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Mol Cell Biochem. 2012 Nov;370(1-2):23-33. doi: 10.1007/s11010-012-1394-8. Epub 2012 Jul 22.

Characterization of the expression and cell-surface localization of transmembrane protein 132A.

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Department of Biomolecular Science, Faculty of Engineering, Gifu University, Gifu, Japan.


Transmembrane protein 132A (TMEM132A, KIAA1583) was first isolated as a novel gene that is enriched during the embryonic and postnatal stages of rat brain development and interacts with GRP78. However, the biological functions of TMEM132A are scarcely characterized because the protein does not contain any known structural domains. Using a cell-surface biotinylation assay and immunocytochemical staining, we found that TMEM132A is a transmembrane glycoprotein consisting of a large extracellular domain in the N-terminal region and a small cytosolic domain in the C-terminal region. Partial deletions of the intracellular domain of TMEM132A had little effect on its expression level and cell-surface localization in transfected HEK293 cells, whereas deletions of the extracellular domain hampered transport to the cell surface. The expression pattern of each N-terminal mutant was immunocytochemically confirmed in HeLa cells transfected with the same constructs. Treatment with tunicamycin, an inhibitor of protein glycosylation, led to the accumulation of the unglycosylated form of TMEM132A in inverse proportion to the glycosylated form; however, both forms were localized at the cell surface at almost equal rates. In contrast, GRP78 overexpression led to the accumulation of unglycosylated TMEM132A, which was not detected on the cell surface. Inhibition of ER-Golgi transport by treatment with brefeldin A or the overexpression of mutant Sar1 attenuated the amount of cell-surface localized TMEM132A in HEK293 cells. Treatment with reagents disrupting intracellular calcium rapidly down-regulated the amount of TMEM132A protein in Neuro2a cells without affecting the expression level of its mRNA. Taken together, our data show that the novel cell-surface localized glycoprotein, TMEM132A, is regulated by several factors, including GRP78, Sar1, and intracellular calcium, in a post-transcriptional manner.

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