Letter

Nature 441, 1007-1010 (22 June 2006) | doi:10.1038/nature04737; Received 14 December 2005; Accepted 22 March 2006; Published online 14 May 2006

Live imaging of yeast Golgi cisternal maturation

Kumi Matsuura-Tokita1, Masaki Takeuchi1,4, Akira Ichihara1,2, Kenta Mikuriya2 and Akihiko Nakano1,3

  1. Molecular Membrane Biology Laboratory, RIKEN Discovery Research Institute, Wako, Saitama 351-0198, Japan
  2. Biocenter, Yokogawa Electric Corporation, Musashino, Tokyo 180-8750, Japan
  3. Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, University of Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan
  4. †Present address: Department of Molecular Structure, Institute for Molecular Science, National Institutes of Natural Sciences, Okazaki, Aichi 444-8585, Japan

Correspondence to: Akihiko Nakano1,3 Correspondence and requests for materials should be addressed to A.N. (Email: nakano@riken.jp).

There is a debate over how protein trafficking is performed through the Golgi apparatus1, 2, 3, 4. In the secretory pathway, secretory proteins that are synthesized in the endoplasmic reticulum enter the early compartment of the Golgi apparatus called cis cisternae, undergo various modifications and processing, and then leave for the plasma membrane from the late (trans) cisternae. The cargo proteins must traverse the Golgi apparatus in the cis-to-trans direction. Two typical models propose either vesicular transport or cisternal progression and maturation for this process. The vesicular transport model predicts that Golgi cisternae are distinct stable compartments connected by vesicular traffic, whereas the cisternal maturation model predicts that cisternae are transient structures that form de novo, mature from cis to trans, and then dissipate. Technical progress in live-cell imaging has long been awaited to address this problem. Here we show, by the use of high-speed three-dimensional confocal microscopy, that yeast Golgi cisternae do change the distribution of resident membrane proteins from the cis nature to the trans over time, as proposed by the maturation model, in a very dynamic way.

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