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Drug Metab Dispos. 2014 Jan;42(1):62-9. doi: 10.1124/dmd.113.054536. Epub 2013 Oct 10.

Oatp1a1 requires PDZK1 to traffic to the plasma membrane by selective recruitment of microtubule-based motor proteins.

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Department of Anatomy and Structural Biology, Marion Bessin Liver Research Center, Division of Gastroenterology and Liver Diseases, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York.


Previous studies identified a family of organic anion transport proteins (OATPs), many of which have C-terminal PDZ binding consensus sequences. In particular, the C-terminal four amino acids of Oatp1a1, a transporter on rat and mouse hepatocytes, comprise a consensus binding site for PDZK1. In PDZK1 knockout mice and in transfected cells where PDZK1 expression was knocked down, Oatp1a1 accumulates in intracellular vesicles. The present study tests the hypothesis that Oatp1a1 traffics to and from the cell surface in vesicles along microtubules, and that PDZK1 guides recruitment of specific motors to these vesicles. Oatp1a1-containing vesicles were prepared from wild-type and PDZK1 knockout mice. As seen by immunofluorescence, kinesin-1, a microtubule plus-end directed motor, was largely associated with vesicles from wild-type mouse liver, whereas dynein, a minus-end directed motor, was largely associated with vesicles from PDZK1 knockout mouse liver. Quantification of motility on directionally marked microtubules following addition of 50 µM ATP showed that wild-type vesicles moved equally toward the plus and minus ends whereas PDZK1 knockout vesicles moved predominantly toward the minus end, consistent with net movement toward the cell interior. These studies provide a novel mechanism by which PDZK1 regulates intracellular trafficking of Oatp1a1 by recruiting specific motors to Oatp1a1-containing vesicles. In the absence of PDZK1, Oatp1a1-containing vesicles cannot recruit kinesin-1 and associate with dynein as a predominant minus-end directed motor. Whether this is a result of direct interaction of the Oatp1a1 cytoplasmic domain with dynein or with a dynein-containing protein complex remains to be established.

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