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J Cell Sci. 2007 Nov 1;120(Pt 21):3729-37.

RILP is required for the proper morphology and function of late endosomes.

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Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Biologiche ed Ambientali, Università del Salento, Via Provinciale Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy.


Lysosomal degradation of signalling receptors such as the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor (EGFR) is an important mechanism for termination of cell signalling. Such degradation involves the endosomal sorting of ubiquitylated receptors into intralumenal vesicles (ILVs) of multivesicular endosomes (MVEs) that move along microtubules to fuse with perinuclear lysosomes. The Rab7-interacting lysosomal protein RILP is interesting in this context as it interacts with Vps22 (also known as EAP30) and Vps36 (also known as EAP45), subunits of the endosomal sorting complex required for transport II (ESCRT-II), as well as with the dynein-dynactin motor complex. Because previous functional studies of RILP have been based on its overexpression, we have asked here whether RILP is required for endocytic trafficking of receptors. Depletion of RILP caused elevated levels of four late-endosomal molecules, lyso-bisphosphatidic acid, Lamp1, CD63 and cation-independent mannose-6-phosphate receptors. Electron microscopy showed that endosomes of RILP-depleted cells were morphologically distinct from normal late endosomes and had a strongly reduced content of ILVs. As in Vps22-depleted cells, ligand-mediated degradation of EGFRs was strongly inhibited in RILP-depleted cells, in which endocytosed EGFRs were found to accumulate in early endosomes. By contrast, endocytosis and recycling of transferrin receptors occurred normally in RILP-depleted cells. These results establish that RILP, like the ESCRT proteins, is required for biogenesis of MVEs and degradative trafficking of EGFRs but not for trafficking of transferrin receptors through early endosomes. We propose that RILP might coordinate the biogenesis of MVEs with dynein-mediated motility.

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