ER protein quality control and proteasome-mediated protein degradation

Semin Cell Dev Biol. 1999 Oct;10(5):507-13. doi: 10.1006/scdb.1999.0321.


A variety of mutant polypeptides that are associated with human disease are targeted for degradation by an endoplasmic reticulum (ER) quality control system. In addition, physiological signals and viral gene products can target the degradation of several ER resident proteins and secreted proteins passing through the ER. Although the mechanism of protein quality control and the site of degradation were obscure, recent data indicate that degradation requires the cytosolic proteasome. Biochemical and genetic analyses have indicated that both lumenal and integral membrane proteins are selected for proteolysis and exported to the cytosol by a process that in several cases requires ER associated molecular chaperones.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cysteine Endopeptidases / metabolism*
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / metabolism*
  • Fungal Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism*
  • Molecular Chaperones / metabolism
  • Multienzyme Complexes / metabolism*
  • Proteasome Endopeptidase Complex
  • Translocation, Genetic
  • Ubiquitins / metabolism
  • Yeasts / genetics


  • Fungal Proteins
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Molecular Chaperones
  • Multienzyme Complexes
  • Ubiquitins
  • Cysteine Endopeptidases
  • Proteasome Endopeptidase Complex