Organization of lipids into membrane microdomains is a vital mechanism of protein processing. Here we show that overexpression of ERG6, a gene involved in ergosterol synthesis, elevates sterol levels 1.5-fold on the vacuole membrane and enhances their homotypic fusion. The mechanism of sterol-enhanced fusion is not via more efficient sorting, but instead promotes increased kinetics of fusion subreactions. We initially isolated ERG6 as a suppressor of a vrp1Delta growth defect selective for vacuole function. VRP1 encodes verprolin, an actin-binding protein that colocalizes to vacuoles. The vrp1Delta mutant has fragmented vacuoles in vivo and isolated vacuoles do not fuse in vitro, indicative of a Vrp1p requirement for membrane fusion. ERG6 overexpression rescues vrp1Delta vacuole fusion in a cytosol-dependent manner. Cytosol prepared from the vrp1Delta strain remains active; therefore, cytosol is not resupplying Vrp1p. Las17p (Vrp1p functional partner) antibodies, which inhibit wild-type vacuole fusion, do not inhibit the fusion of vacuoles from the vrp1Delta-ERG6 overexpression strain. Vacuole-associated actin turnover is decreased in the vrp1Delta strain, but recovered by ERG6 overexpression linking sterol enrichment to actin remodeling. Therefore, the Vrp1p/Las17p requirement for membrane fusion is bypassed by increased sterols, which promotes actin remodeling as part the membrane fusion mechanism.
|Evidence ID||Analyze ID||Interactor||Interactor Systematic Name||Interactor||Interactor Systematic Name||Type||Assay||Annotation||Action||Modification||Phenotype||Source||Reference||Note|
|Evidence ID||Analyze ID||Gene||Gene Systematic Name||Gene Ontology Term||Gene Ontology Term ID||Qualifier||Aspect||Method||Evidence||Source||Assigned On||Annotation Extension||Reference|
|Evidence ID||Analyze ID||Gene||Gene Systematic Name||Phenotype||Experiment Type||Experiment Type Category||Mutant Information||Strain Background||Chemical||Details||Reference|
|Evidence ID||Analyze ID||Regulator||Regulator Systematic Name||Target||Target Systematic Name||Experiment||Assay||Construct||Conditions||Strain Background||Reference|