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Genes Cells. 2015 Feb;20(2):135-52. doi: 10.1111/gtc.12209. Epub 2014 Dec 3.

BNIP-2 binds phosphatidylserine, localizes to vesicles, and is transported by kinesin-1.

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Laboratory of Gene Function in Animals, Nara Institute of Science and Technology, 9816-5 Takayama, Ikoma, Nara, 630-0192, Japan.


BNIP-2 shows high homology with the Cayman ataxia protein, caytaxin, which functions as a kinesin-1 adapter bridging cargos and kinesin light chains (KLCs). BNIP-2 is known to induce cell shape changes when over-expressed in culture cells, but its physiological functions are mostly unknown. BNIP-2 interacts with KLC through the conserved WED motif in the N-terminal region of BNIP-2. Interaction with KLC and transportation by kinesin-1 are essential for over-expressed BNIP-2 to elongate cells and induce cellular processes. Endogenous BNIP-2 localizes to the Golgi apparatus, early and recycling endosomes and mitochondria, aligned with microtubules, and moves at a speed compatible with kinesin-1 transportation. The CRAL-TRIO domain of BNIP-2 specifically interacts with phosphatidylserine, and the vesicular localization of BNIP-2 requires interaction with this phospholipid. BNIP-2 mutants which do not bind phosphatidylserine do not induce morphological changes in cells. These data show that similar to caytaxin, BNIP-2 is a kinesin-1 adapter involved in vesicular transportation in the cytoplasm and that association with cargos depends on interaction of the CRAL-TRIO domain with membrane phosphatidylserine.

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