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Traffic. 2006 Nov;7(11):1473-81. Epub 2006 Oct 1.

Cargo selectivity of the ERGIC-53/MCFD2 transport receptor complex.

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Biozentrum, University of Basel, CH-4056 Basel, Switzerland.


Exit of soluble secretory proteins from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) can occur by receptor-mediated export as exemplified by blood coagulation factors V and VIII. Their efficient secretion requires the membrane lectin ER Golgi intermediate compartment protein-53 (ERGIC-53) and its soluble luminal interaction partner multiple coagulation factor deficiency protein 2 (MCFD2), which form a cargo receptor complex in the early secretory pathway. ERGIC-53 also interacts with the two lysosomal glycoproteins cathepsin Z and cathepsin C. Here, we tested the subunit interdependence and cargo selectivity of ERGIC-53 and MCFD2 by short interference RNA-based knockdown. In the absence of ERGIC-53, MCFD2 was secreted, whereas knocking down MCFD2 had no effect on the localization of ERGIC-53. Cargo binding properties of the ERGIC-53/MCFD2 complex were analyzed in vivo using yellow fluorescent protein fragment complementation. We found that MCFD2 is dispensable for the binding of cathepsin Z and cathepsin C to ERGIC-53. The results indicate that ERGIC-53 can bind cargo glycoproteins in an MCFD2-independent fashion and suggest that MCFD2 is a recruitment factor for blood coagulation factors V and VIII.

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