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Trends Cell Biol. 2013 Oct;23(10):511-7. doi: 10.1016/j.tcb.2013.05.005. Epub 2013 Jun 24.

Anchors aweigh: protein localization and transport mediated by transmembrane domains.

Author information

1
Département de Physiologie Cellulaire et Métabolisme, Centre Médical Universitaire, 1 rue Michel Servet, 1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland. Electronic address: Pierre.Cosson@unige.ch.

Abstract

The transmembrane domains (TMDs) of integral membrane proteins have emerged as major determinants of intracellular localization and transport in the secretory and endocytic pathways. Unlike sorting signals in cytosolic domains, TMD sorting determinants are not conserved amino acid sequences but physical properties such as the length and hydrophilicity of the transmembrane span. The underlying sorting machinery is still poorly characterized, but several mechanisms have been proposed, including TMD recognition by transmembrane sorting receptors and partitioning into membrane lipid domains. Here we review the nature of TMD sorting determinants and how they may dictate transmembrane protein localization and transport.

KEYWORDS:

endomembrane system; lipid domains; protein sorting; protein traffic; transmembrane domains; transmembrane receptors

PMID:
23806646
PMCID:
PMC3783643
DOI:
10.1016/j.tcb.2013.05.005
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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