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Dev Cell. 2002 Apr;2(4):411-23.

GPI-anchored proteins are delivered to recycling endosomes via a distinct cdc42-regulated, clathrin-independent pinocytic pathway.

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National Centre for Biological Sciences, UAS-GKVK Campus, Bellary Road, 560 065, Bangalore, India.


Endocytosis of cell-surface proteins via specific pathways is critical for their function. We show that multiple glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored proteins (GPI-APs) are endocytosed to the recycling endosomal compartment but not to the Golgi via a nonclathrin, noncaveolae mediated pathway. GPI anchoring is a positive signal for internalization into rab5-independent tubular-vesicular endosomes also responsible for a major fraction of fluid-phase uptake; molecules merely lacking cytoplasmic extensions are not included. Unlike the internalization of detergent-resistant membrane (DRM)-associated interleukin 2 receptor, endocytosis of DRM-associated GPI-APs is unaffected by inhibition of RhoA or dynamin 2 activity. Inhibition of Rho family GTPase cdc42, but not Rac1, reduces fluid-phase uptake and redistributes GPI-APs to the clathrin-mediated pathway. These results describe a distinct constitutive pinocytic pathway, specifically regulated by cdc42.

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