Epithelial cells have an apical–basolateral axis of polarity, which is required for epithelial functions including barrier formation, vectorial ion transport and sensory perception. Here we review what is known about the sorting signals, machineries and pathways that maintain this asymmetry, and how polarity proteins interface with membrane-trafficking pathways to generate membrane domains de novo. It is becoming apparent that membrane traffic does not simply reinforce polarity, but is critical for the generation of cortical epithelial cell asymmetry.
Rab11a and Rab8 work in conjunction with myosin5B to promote discoidal/fusiform vesicle exocytosis at the apical surface of umbrella cells. It is predicted that similar Rab cascades will be common to other regulated secretory pathways.
Multiple Rabs are associated with secretory granules/vesicles, but how these GTPases are coordinated to promote regulated exocytosis is not well understood. In bladder umbrella cells a subapical pool of discoidal/fusiform-shaped vesicles (DFVs) undergoes Rab11a-dependent regulated exocytosis in response to bladder filling. We show that Rab11a-associated vesicles are enmeshed in an apical cytokeratin meshwork and that Rab11a likely acts upstream of Rab8a to promote exocytosis. Surprisingly, expression of Rabin8, a previously described Rab11a effector and guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Rab8, stimulates stretch-induced exocytosis in a manner that is independent of its catalytic activity. Additional studies demonstrate that the unconventional motor protein myosin5B motor (Myo5B) works in association with the Rab8a–Rab11a module to promote exocytosis, possibly by ensuring transit of DFVs through a subapical, cortical actin cytoskeleton before fusion. Our results indicate that Rab11a, Rab8a, and Myo5B function as part of a network to promote stretch-induced exocytosis, and we predict that similarly organized Rab networks will be common to other regulated secretory pathways.
Localized synthesis of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PtdIns(4,5)P2] at clathrin coated pits (CCPs) is crucial for the recruitment of adaptors and other components of the internalization machinery, as well as for regulating actin dynamics during endocytosis. PtdIns(4,5)P2 is synthesized from phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate by any of three phosphatidylinositol 5-kinase type I (PIP5KI) isoforms (α, β or γ). PIP5KIβ localizes almost exclusively to the apical surface in polarized mouse cortical collecting duct cells, whereas the other isoforms have a less polarized membrane distribution. We therefore investigated the role of PIP5KI isoforms in endocytosis at the apical and basolateral domains. Endocytosis at the apical surface is known to occur more slowly than at the basolateral surface. Apical endocytosis was selectively stimulated by overexpression of PIP5KIβ whereas the other isoforms had no effect on either apical or basolateral internalization. We found no difference in the affinity for PtdIns(4,5)P2-containing liposomes of the PtdIns(4,5)P2 binding domains of epsin and Dab2, consistent with a generic effect of elevated PtdIns(4,5)P2 on apical endocytosis. Additionally, using apical total internal reflection fluorescence imaging and electron microscopy we found that cells overexpressing PIP5KIβ have fewer apical CCPs but more internalized coated structures than control cells, consistent with enhanced maturation of apical CCPs. Together, our results suggest that synthesis of PtdIns(4,5)P2 mediated by PIP5KIβ is rate limiting for apical but not basolateral endocytosis in polarized kidney cells. PtdIns(4,5)P2 may be required to overcome specific structural constraints that limit the efficiency of apical endocytosis.
The epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) is the rate-limiting step for sodium reabsorption across tight epithelia. Cyclic-AMP (cAMP) stimulation promotes ENaC trafficking to the apical surface to increase channel number and transcellular Na+ transport. Removal of corticosteroid supplementation in a cultured cortical collecting duct cell line reduced ENaC expression. Concurrently, the number of vesicles trafficked in response to cAMP stimulation, as measured by a change in membrane capacitance, also decreased. Stimulation with aldosterone restored both the basal and cAMP-stimulated ENaC activity and increased the number of exocytosed vesicles. Knocking down ENaC directly decreased both the cAMP-stimulated short-circuit current and capacitance response in the presence of aldosterone. However, constitutive apical recycling of the Immunoglobulin A receptor was unaffected by alterations in ENaC expression or trafficking. Fischer Rat Thyroid cells, transfected with α,β,γ-mENaC had a significantly greater membrane capacitance response to cAMP stimulation compared to non-ENaC controls. Finally, immunofluorescent labeling and quantitation revealed a smaller number of vesicles in cells where ENaC expression was reduced. These findings indicate that ENaC is not a passive passenger in regulated epithelial vesicle trafficking, but plays a role in establishing and maintaining the pool of vesicles that respond to cAMP stimulation.
Ser-227 phosphorylation of Rab11-FIP2 by Par1b/MARK2 regulates the establishment of polarized epithelial monolayers in three-dimensional MDCK cell cultures and has an ongoing influence on the composition of both adherens and tight junctions in polarized epithelial cells.
The Rab11 effector Rab11-family interacting protein 2 (Rab11-FIP2) regulates transcytosis through its interactions with Rab11a and myosin Vb. Previous studies implicated Rab11-FIP2 in the establishment of polarity in Madin–Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells through phosphorylation of Ser-227 by MARK2. Here we examine the dynamic role of Rab11-FIP2 phosphorylation on MDCK cell polarity. Endogenous Rab11-FIP2 phosphorylated on Ser-227 coalesces on vesicular plaques during the reestablishment of polarity after either monolayer wounding or calcium switch. Whereas expression of the nonphosphorylatable Rab11-FIP2(S227A) elicits a loss in lumen formation in MDCK cell cysts grown in Matrigel, the putative pseudophosphorylated Rab11-FIP2(S227E) mutant induces the formation of cysts with multiple lumens. On permeable filters, Rab11-FIP2(S227E)–expressing cells exhibit alterations in the composition of both the adherens and tight junctions. At the adherens junction, p120 catenin and K-cadherin are retained, whereas the majority of the E-cadherin is lost. Although ZO-1 is retained at the tight junction, occludin is lost and the claudin composition is altered. Of interest, the effects of Rab11-FIP2 on cellular polarity did not involve myosin Vb or Rab11a. These results indicate that Ser-227 phosphorylation of Rab11-FIP2 regulates the composition of both adherens and tight junctions and is intimately involved in the regulation of polarity in epithelial cells.
Uroplakin (UP)3a is critical for urinary tract development and function; however, its role in these processes is unknown. We examined the function of the UP3a-like protein Upk3l, which was expressed at the apical surfaces of the epithelial cells that line the pronephric tubules (PTs) of the zebrafish pronephros. Embryos treated with upk3l-targeted morpholinos showed decreased pronephros function, which was attributed to defects in PT epithelial cell morphogenesis and polarization including: loss of an apical brush border and associated phospho-ERM proteins, apical redistribution of the basolateral Na+/K+–ATPase, and altered or diminished expression of the apical polarity complex proteins Prkcz (atypical protein kinase C zeta) and Pard3 (Par3). Upk3l missing its C-terminal cytoplasmic domain or containing mutations in conserved tyrosine or proline residues did not rescue, or only partially rescued the effects of Upk3l depletion. Our studies indicate that Upk3l promotes epithelial polarization and morphogenesis, likely by forming or stimulating interactions with cytoplasmic signaling or polarity proteins, and that defects in this process may underlie the pathology observed in UP3a knockout mice or patients with renal abnormalities that result from altered UP3a expression.
Vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP) is an immunomodulatory neuropeptide widely distributed in neural pathways that regulate micturition. VIP is also an endogenous anti-inflammatory agent that has been suggested for the development of therapies for inflammatory disorders. In the present study, we examined urinary bladder function, hindpaw and pelvic sensitivity in VIP-/- and littermate wildtype controls. We demonstrated increased bladder mass and fewer but larger urine spots on filter paper in VIP-/- mice. Using cystometry in conscious, unrestrained mice, VIP-/- mice exhibited increased void volumes and shorter intercontraction intervals with continuous intravesical infusion of saline. No differences in transepithelial resistance or water permeability were demonstrated between VIP-/- and WT mice; however, an increase in urea permeability was demonstrated in VIP-/- mice. With the induction of bladder inflammation by acute administration of cyclophosphamide (CYP), an exaggerated or prolonged bladder hyperreflexia, hindpaw and pelvic sensitivity were demonstrated in VIP-/- mice. The changes in bladder hyperreflexia and somatic sensitivity in VIP-/- mice may reflect increased expression of neurotrophins and/or or proinflammatory cytokines in the urinary bladder. Thus, these changes may further regulate the neural control of micturition.
neurotrophins; cytokines; cystometry; pelvic pain; bladder permeability
Epithelial cells respond to mechanical stimuli by increasing exocytosis, endocytosis, and ion transport, but how these processes are initiated and coordinated and the mechanotransduction pathways involved are not well understood. We observed that in response to a dynamic mechanical environment, increased apical membrane tension, but not pressure, stimulated apical membrane exocytosis and ion transport in bladder umbrella cells. The exocytic response was independent of temperature but required the cytoskeleton and the activity of a nonselective cation channel and the epithelial sodium channel. The subsequent increase in basolateral membrane tension had the opposite effect and triggered the compensatory endocytosis of added apical membrane, which was modulated by opening of basolateral K+ channels. Our results indicate that during the dynamic processes of bladder filling and voiding apical membrane dynamics depend on sequential and coordinated mechanotransduction events at both membrane domains of the umbrella cell.
The transcytotic pathway allows for the bidirectional transport of endocytosed solutes, lipids, and proteins between the two membrane domains of polarized epithelial cells while maintaining the functional integrity of the epithelial tissue. A method is described to measure basolateral-to-apical transcytosis of immunoglobulin A (IgA) in polarized Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells expressing the polymeric immunoglobulin receptor (pIgR). The cells are grown on porous Transwell filter supports, and radiolabeled 125I-immunoglobulin A (IgA) is internalized from the basolateral pole of MDCK cells. During a subsequent 2-h chase, the amount of 125I-IgA that is recycled, degraded, or transcytosed is quantified. This assay can be adapted to follow the postendocytic fate of other 125I-labeled ligands and proteins.
Apical; basolateral; immunoglobulin A (IgA); iodination; polarized Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells; polymeric immunoglobulin receptor (pIgR); transcytosis
Annexin A4 (anxA4) is a member of the Ca2+-dependent membrane-binding family of proteins implicated in the regulation of ion conductances, Ca2+ homeostasis, and membrane trafficking. We demonstrate, in mice, that annexins 1-6 are present in whole bladder and exhibit differential expression in the urothelium. An anxA4a-knockout (anxA4a-/-) mouse model shows no protein in the urothelium by immunofluorescence and immunoblotting. In wild-type bladders, anxA4a in umbrella cells showed uniform cytoplasmic staining and some association with the nuclear membrane. Application of a hydrostatic pressure to bladders mounted in Ussing chambers resulted in redistribution of anxA4a from cytoplasm to cellular boundaries in the basal and intermediate cells but not in superficial umbrella cells. We hypothesized that anxA4a might be important for barrier function or for stretch-activated membrane trafficking. To test these hypotheses, we conducted a series of functional and morphological analyses on bladders from control and anxA4a-/- animals. The transepithelial resistances, water permeabilities, and urea permeabilities of anxA4a-/- bladders were not different from controls, indicating that barrier function was intact. Membrane trafficking in response to hydrostatic pressure as measured by capacitance increases was also normal for anxA4a-/- bladders. Cystometrograms performed on live animals showed that voiding frequency and intrabladder pressures were also not different. There were no differences in bladder surface morphology or cellular architecture examined by scanning and transmission electron microscopy, respectively. We conclude that loss of anxA4 from the urothelium does not affect barrier function, membrane trafficking, or normal bladder-voiding behavior.
permeability; barrier; trafficking
The octameric exocyst complex is associated with the junctional complex and recycling endosomes and is proposed to selectively tether cargo vesicles directed toward the basolateral surface of polarized Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells. We observed that the exocyst subunits Sec6, Sec8, and Exo70 were localized to early endosomes, transferrin-positive common recycling endosomes, and Rab11a-positive apical recycling endosomes of polarized MDCK cells. Consistent with its localization to multiple populations of endosomes, addition of function-blocking Sec8 antibodies to streptolysin-O–permeabilized cells revealed exocyst requirements for several endocytic pathways including basolateral recycling, apical recycling, and basolateral-to-apical transcytosis. The latter was selectively dependent on interactions between the small GTPase Rab11a and Sec15A and was inhibited by expression of the C-terminus of Sec15A or down-regulation of Sec15A expression using shRNA. These results indicate that the exocyst complex may be a multipurpose regulator of endocytic traffic directed toward both poles of polarized epithelial cells and that transcytotic traffic is likely to require Rab11a-dependent recruitment and modulation of exocyst function, likely through interactions with Sec15A.
The apical surface of polarized epithelial cells receives input from mediators, growth factors, and mechanical stimuli. How these stimuli are coordinated to regulate complex cellular functions such as polarized membrane traffic is not understood. We analyzed the requirement for growth factor signaling and mechanical stimuli in umbrella cells, which line the mucosal surface of the bladder and dynamically insert and remove apical membrane in response to stretch. We observed that stretch-stimulated exocytosis required apical epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor activation and that activation occurred in an autocrine manner downstream of heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor precursor cleavage. Long-term changes in apical exocytosis depended on protein synthesis, which occurred upon EGF receptor-dependent activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling. Our results indicate a novel physiological role for the EGF receptor that couples upstream mechanical stimuli to downstream apical EGF receptor activation that may regulate apical surface area changes during bladder filling.
Rab11a, myosin Vb, and the Rab11-family interacting protein 2 (FIP2) regulate plasma membrane recycling in epithelial cells. This study sought to characterize more fully Rab11-FIP2 function by identifying kinase activities modifying Rab11-FIP2. We have found that gastric microsomal membrane extracts phosphorylate Rab11-FIP2 on serine 227. We identified the kinase that phosphorylated Rab11-FIP2 as MARK2/EMK1/Par-1Bα (MARK2), and recombinant MARK2 phosphorylated Rab11-FIP2 only on serine 227. We created stable Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cell lines expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein-Rab11-FIP2 wild type or a nonphosphorylatable mutant [Rab11-FIP2(S227A)]. Analysis of these cell lines demonstrates a new role for Rab11-FIP2 in addition to that in the plasma membrane recycling system. In calcium switch assays, cells expressing Rab11-FIP2(S227A) showed a defect in the timely reestablishment of p120-containing junctional complexes. However, Rab11-FIP2(S227A) did not affect localization with recycling system components or the normal function of apical recycling and transcytosis pathways. These results indicate that phosphorylation of Rab11-FIP2 on serine 227 by MARK2 regulates an alternative pathway modulating the establishment of epithelial polarity.
The umbrella cells that line the bladder are mechanosensitive, and bladder filling increases the apical surface area of these cells; however, the upstream signals that regulate this process are unknown. Increased pressure stimulated ATP release from the isolated uroepithelium of rabbit bladders, which was blocked by inhibitors of vesicular transport, connexin hemichannels, ABC protein family members, and nucleoside transporters. Pressure-induced increases in membrane capacitance (a measure of apical plasma membrane surface area where 1 μF ≈ 1 cm2) were inhibited by the serosal, but not mucosal, addition of apyrase or the purinergic receptor antagonist PPADS. Upon addition of purinergic receptor agonists, increased capacitance was observed even in the absence of pressure. Moreover, knockout mice lacking expression of P2X2 and/or P2X3 receptors failed to show increases in apical surface area when exposed to hydrostatic pressure. Treatments that prevented release of Ca2+ from intracellular stores or activation of PKA blocked ATPγS-stimulated changes in capacitance. These results indicate that increased hydrostatic pressure stimulates release of ATP from the uroepithelium and that upon binding to P2X and possibly P2Y receptors on the umbrella cell, downstream Ca2+ and PKA second messenger cascades may act to stimulate membrane insertion at the apical pole of these cells.
The epithelium of the urinary bladder must maintain a highly impermeable barrier despite large variations in urine volume during bladder filling and voiding. To study how the epithelium accommodates these volume changes, we mounted bladder tissue in modified Ussing chambers and subjected the tissue to mechanical stretch. Stretching the tissue for 5 h resulted in a 50% increase in lumenal surface area (from ∼2900 to 4300 μm2), exocytosis of a population of discoidal vesicles located in the apical cytoplasm of the superficial umbrella cells, and release of secretory proteins. Surprisingly, stretch also induced endocytosis of apical membrane and 100% of biotin-labeled membrane was internalized within 5 min after stretch. The endocytosed membrane was delivered to lysosomes and degraded by a leupeptin-sensitive pathway. Last, we show that the exocytic events were mediated, in part, by a cyclic adenosine monophosphate, protein kinase A-dependent process. Our results indicate that stretch modulates mucosal surface area by coordinating both exocytosis and endocytosis at the apical membrane of umbrella cells and provide insight into the mechanism of how mechanical forces regulate membrane traffic in nonexcitable cells.
Efficient postendocytic membrane traffic in polarized epithelial cells is thought to be regulated in part by the actin cytoskeleton. RhoA modulates assemblies of actin in the cell, and it has been shown to regulate pinocytosis and phagocytosis; however, its effects on postendocytic traffic are largely unexplored. To this end, we expressed wild-type RhoA (RhoAWT), dominant active RhoA (RhoAV14), and dominant inactive RhoA (RhoAN19) in Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells expressing the polymeric immunoglobulin receptor. RhoAV14 expression stimulated the rate of apical and basolateral endocytosis, whereas RhoAN19 expression decreased the rate from both membrane domains. Polarized basolateral recycling of transferrin was disrupted in RhoAV14-expressing cells as a result of increased ligand release at the apical pole of the cell. Degradation of basolaterally internalized epidermal growth factor was slowed in RhoAV14-expressing cells. Although apical recycling of immunoglobulin A (IgA) was largely unaffected in cells expressing RhoAV14, transcytosis of basolaterally internalized IgA was severely impaired. Morphological and biochemical analyses demonstrated that a large proportion of IgA internalized from the basolateral pole of RhoAV14-expressing cells remained within basolateral early endosomes and was slow to exit these compartments. RhoAN19 and RhoAWT expression had little effect on these postendocytic pathways. These results indicate that in polarized MDCK cells activated RhoA may modulate endocytosis from both membrane domains and postendocytic traffic at the basolateral pole of the cell.
Na,K-ATPase is a key enzyme that regulates a variety of transport functions in epithelial cells. In this study, we demonstrate a role for Na,K-ATPase in the formation of tight junctions, desmosomes, and epithelial polarity with the use of the calcium switch model in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells. Inhibition of Na,K-ATPase either by ouabain or potassium depletion prevented the formation of tight junctions and desmosomes and the cells remained nonpolarized. The formation of bundled stress fibers that appeared transiently in control cells was largely inhibited in ouabain-treated or potassium-depleted cells. Failure to form stress fibers correlated with a large reduction of RhoA GTPase activity in Na,K-ATPase-inhibited cells. In cells overexpressing wild-type RhoA GTPase, Na,K-ATPase inhibition did not affect the formation of stress fibers, tight junctions, or desmosomes, and epithelial polarity developed normally, suggesting that RhoA GTPase is an essential component downstream of Na,K-ATPase-mediated regulation of these junctions. The effects of Na,K-ATPase inhibition were mimicked by treatment with the sodium ionophore gramicidin and were correlated with the increased intracellular sodium levels. Furthermore, ouabain treatment under sodium-free condition did not affect the formation of junctions and epithelial polarity, suggesting that the intracellular Na+ homeostasis plays a crucial role in generation of the polarized phenotype of epithelial cells. These results thus demonstrate that the Na,K-ATPase activity plays an important role in regulating both the structure and function of polarized epithelial cells.
The function of acidification along the endocytic pathway is not well understood, in part because the perturbants used to modify compartmental pH have global effects and in some cases alter cytoplasmic pH. We have used a new approach to study the effect of pH perturbation on postendocytic traffic in polarized Madin–Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells. Influenza M2 is a small membrane protein that functions as an acid-activated ion channel and can elevate the pH of the trans-Golgi network and endosomes. We used recombinant adenoviruses to express the M2 protein of influenza virus in polarized MDCK cells stably transfected with the polymeric immunoglobulin (Ig) receptor. Using indirect immunofluorescence and immunoelectron microscopy, M2 was found to be concentrated at the apical plasma membrane and in subapical vesicles; intracellular M2 colocalized partly with internalized IgA in apical recycling endosomes as well as with the trans-Golgi network marker TGN-38. Expression of M2 slowed the rate of IgA transcytosis across polarized MDCK monolayers. The delay in transport occurred after IgA reached the apical recycling endosome, consistent with the localization of intracellular M2. Apical recycling of IgA was also slowed in the presence of M2, whereas basolateral recycling of transferrin and degradation of IgA were unaffected. By contrast, ammonium chloride affected both apical IgA and basolateral transferrin release. Together, our data suggest that M2 expression selectively perturbs acidification in compartments involved in apical delivery without disrupting other postendocytic transport steps.
Polarized epithelial cells maintain the asymmetric composition of
their apical and basolateral membrane domains by at least two different
processes. These include the regulated trafficking of macromolecules
from the biosynthetic and endocytic pathway to the appropriate membrane
domain and the ability of the tight junction to prevent free mixing of
membrane domain-specific proteins and lipids. Cdc42, a Rho family
GTPase, is known to govern cellular polarity and membrane traffic in
several cell types. We examined whether this protein regulated tight
junction function in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells and pathways that
direct proteins to the apical and basolateral surface of these cells.
We used Madin-Darby canine kidney cells that expressed dominant-active
or dominant-negative mutants of Cdc42 under the control of a
tetracycline-repressible system. Here we report that expression of
dominant-active Cdc42V12 or dominant-negative Cdc42N17 altered tight
junction function. Expression of Cdc42V12 slowed endocytic and
biosynthetic traffic, and expression of Cdc42N17 slowed apical
endocytosis and basolateral to apical transcytosis but stimulated
biosynthetic traffic. These results indicate that Cdc42 may modulate
multiple cellular pathways required for the maintenance of epithelial
When fluid-phase markers are internalized from opposite poles of polarized Madin-Darby canine kidney cells, they accumulate in distinct apical and basolateral early endosomes before meeting in late endosomes. Recent evidence suggests that significant mixing of apically and basolaterally internalized membrane proteins occurs in specialized apical endosomal compartments, including the common recycling endosome and the apical recycling endosome (ARE). The relationship between these latter compartments and the fluid-labeled apical early endosome is unknown at present. We report that when the apical recycling marker, membrane-bound immunoglobulin A (a ligand for the polymeric immunoglobulin receptor), and fluid-phase dextran are cointernalized from the apical poles of Madin-Darby canine kidney cells, they enter a shared apical early endosome (≤2.5 min at 37°C) and are then rapidly segregated from one another. The dextran remains in the large supranuclear EEA1-positive early endosomes while recycling polymeric immunoglobulin receptor–bound immunoglobulin A is delivered to a Rab11-positive subapical recycling compartment. This latter step requires an intact microtubule cytoskeleton. Receptor-bound transferrin, a marker of the basolateral recycling pathway, has limited access to the fluid-rich apical early endosome but is excluded from the subapical elements of the Rab11-positive recycling compartment. We propose that the term ARE be used to describe the subapical Rab11-positive compartment and that the ARE is distinct from both the transferrin-rich common recycling endosome and the fluid-rich apical early endosome.
MUC1 is a mucin-like type 1 transmembrane protein associated with the apical surface of epithelial cells. In human tumors of epithelial origin MUC1 is overexpressed in an underglycosylated form with truncated O-glycans and accumulates in intracellular compartments. To understand the basis for this altered subcellular localization, we compared the synthesis and trafficking of various glycosylated forms of MUC1 in normal (Chinese hamster ovary) cells and glycosylation-defective (ldlD) cells that lack the epimerase to make UDP-Gal/GalNAc from UDP-Glc/GlcNAc. Although the MUC1 synthesized in ldlD cells was rapidly degraded, addition of GalNAc alone to the culture media resulted in stabilization and near normal surface expression of MUC1 with truncated but sialylated O-glycans. Interestingly, the initial rate of endocytosis of this underglycosylated MUC1 was stimulated by twofold compared with fully glycosylated MUC1. However, the half-lives of the two forms were not different, indicating that trafficking to lysosomes was not affected. Both the normal and stimulated internalization of MUC1 could be blocked by hypertonic media, a hallmark of clathrin-mediated endocytosis. MUC1 endocytosis was also blocked by expression of a dominant-negative mutant of dynamin-1 (K44A), and MUC1 was observed in both clathrin-coated pits and vesicles by immunoelectron microscopy of ultrathin cryosections. Our data suggest that the subcellular redistribution of MUC1 in tumor cells could be a direct result of altered endocytic trafficking induced by its aberrant glycosylation; potential models are discussed. These results also implicate a new role for O-glycans on mucin-like membrane proteins entering the endocytic pathway through clathrin-coated pits.
Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells expressing constitutively active Rac1 (Rac1V12) accumulate a large central aggregate of membranes beneath the apical membrane that contains filamentous actin, Rac1V12, rab11, and the resident apical membrane protein GP-135. To examine the roles of Rac1 in membrane traffic and the formation of this aggregate, we analyzed endocytic and biosynthetic trafficking pathways in MDCK cells expressing Rac1V12 and dominant inactive Rac1 (Rac1N17). Rac1V12 expression decreased the rates of apical and basolateral endocytosis, whereas Rac1N17 expression increased those rates from both membrane domains. Basolateral-to-apical transcytosis of immunoglobulin A (IgA) (a ligand for the polymeric immunoglobulin receptor [pIgR]), apical recycling of pIgR-IgA, and accumulation of newly synthesized GP-135 at the apical plasma membrane were all decreased in cells expressing Rac1V12. These effects of Rac1V12 on trafficking pathways to the apical membrane were the result of the delivery and trapping of these proteins in the central aggregate. In contrast to abnormalities in apical trafficking events, basolateral recycling of transferrin, degradation of EGF internalized from the basolateral membrane, and delivery of newly synthesized pIgR from the Golgi to the basolateral membrane were all relatively unaffected by Rac1V12 expression. Rac1N17 expression had little or no effect on these postendocytic or biosynthetic trafficking pathways. These results show that in polarized MDCK cells activated Rac1 may regulate the rate of endocytosis from both membrane domains and that expression of dominant active Rac1V12 specifically alters postendocytic and biosynthetic membrane traffic directed to the apical, but not the basolateral, membrane.