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Curr Biol. 2001 Jul 10;11(13):1074-8.

A yeast homolog of the mammalian mannose 6-phosphate receptors contributes to the sorting of vacuolar hydrolases.

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Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Hills Road, CB2 2QH, Cambridge, United Kingdom.


The soluble hydrolases of the mammalian lysosome are marked for delivery to this organelle by the addition of mannose 6-phosphate to their N-glycans. Two related mannose 6-phosphate receptors (MPRs) recognize this feature in the trans Golgi network (TGN) and deliver the hydrolases to the late endosome. In contrast, the vacuolar hydrolases of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae do not contain 6-phosphate monoesters on their N-glycans, and the only sorting receptor so far identified in this organism is the product of the VPS10 gene. This protein also cycles between the Golgi and the late endosome, but is unrelated to the vertebrate MPRs, and recognizes a specific amino acid sequence of carboxypeptidase Y (CPY). This has led to the notion that although yeast and mammals share many components in Golgi to endosome traffic, they use unrelated receptor systems to sort their abundant soluble hydrolases. In this paper, we report that the yeast genome does in fact contain an uncharacterized ORF (YPR079w) that encodes a membrane protein that is distantly related to mammalian MPRs. The protein encoded by this gene (which we term MRL1) cycles through the late endosome. Moreover, there is a strong synergistic effect on the maturation of proteinases A and B when both MRL1 and VPS10 are deleted, which suggests that Mrl1p may serve as a sorting receptor in the delivery of vacuolar hydrolases.

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