Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Molecular mechanism provides intra-cellular traffic signal

20.10.2006
City planners could learn a lesson or two from tiny cells on how to maximize traffic flow.

Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago have found that intra-cellular trafficking is tightly coordinated for maximum flow through cellular compartments -- much as vehicles on a crowded road are allowed to pass quickly through a succession of green traffic lights.

The molecular mechanism that underlies this coordination is reported by lead researcher Nava Segev, UIC professor of biological sciences, in the November issue of Nature Cell Biology.

While the finding was made using yeast cells, intra-cellular mechanisms discovered in yeast almost invariably correspond to processes in mammalian cells, including humans, and the mechanism Segev described may find applicability in the biomedical field.

... more about:
»Golgi »Segev »TRAPP »Ypt »compartment »intra-cellular

"Every system in our body depends on intra-cellular trafficking, because anything that goes from the inside of a cell to the outside, or from outside to inside, uses this process," Segev said. "Malfunctioning of this pathway can cause a variety of human diseases. For example, problems in insulin secretion or presentation of insulin-receptors on the cell membrane result in diabetes. Defects in growth factor secretion and presentation of their receptors on cells result in cancer. Defects in neurotransmitter release or internalization result in brain disorders."

A special set of proteins is responsible for the coordination. Molecular switches that go by the letters Ypt allow membrane-enclosed vesicles to pass in and out of cellular compartments. Activator proteins flip the switches on. One activator protein, called TRAPP, coordinates two Ypt switches for quick entrance and subsequent exit from a central cellular compartment known as the Golgi apparatus.

"The Golgi is a central station in all cells, through which all intra-cellular traffic passes," Segev explained.

Specific subunits of TRAPP previously identified by the UIC researchers were found to be the key to coordinated switching and traffic flow through the Golgi. They have now shown that components of TRAPP act in sequence to direct the flow. One form of TRAPP turns on the first Ypt for entry into the Golgi, while at the other end of the Golgi, two subunits join TRAPP to activate the Ypt required for exit from the Golgi, Segev said.

Segev said the mechanism that her lab identified must now be shown to exist in mammalian cells. Her earlier discovery of the Ypt molecular switches in yeast and the subsequent finding of their homologues in mammalian cells, together with the fact that TRAPP is conserved in evolution from yeast to man, lead her to believe the entire coordinated switching mechanism is universal.

Paul Francuch | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.uic.edu

Further reports about: Golgi Segev TRAPP Ypt compartment intra-cellular

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Closing the carbon loop
08.12.2016 | University of Pittsburgh

nachricht Newly discovered bacteria-binding protein in the intestine
08.12.2016 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Closing the carbon loop

08.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Applicability of dynamic facilitation theory to binary hard disk systems

08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Scientists track chemical and structural evolution of catalytic nanoparticles in 3-D

08.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>