Routing misfolded proteins through the multivesicular body (MVB) pathway protects against proteotoxicity

J Biol Chem. 2011 Aug 19;286(33):29376-29387. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M111.233346. Epub 2011 Jun 27.


The secretory pathway maintains multiple quality control checkpoints. Initially, endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation pathways monitor protein folding to retain and eliminate aberrant products. Despite its broad client range, some molecules escape detection and traffic to Golgi membranes. There, a poorly understood mechanism termed Golgi quality control routes aberrant proteins for lysosomal/vacuolar degradation. To better understand Golgi quality control, we examined the processing of the obligate substrate Wsc1p. Misfolded Wsc1p does not use routes of typical vacuolar membrane proteins. Instead, it partitions into intralumenal vesicles of the multivesicular body (MVB) pathway, mediated by the E3 ubiquitin ligase Rsp5p. Its subsequent transport to the vacuolar lumen is essential for complete molecule breakdown. Surprisingly, the transport mode plays a second crucial function in neutralizing potential substrate toxicity. Eliminating the MVB sorting signal diverted molecules to the vacuolar limiting membrane, resulting in the generation of toxic by-products. These data demonstrate a new role of the MVB pathway in protein quality control.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Endosomal Sorting Complexes Required for Transport / genetics
  • Endosomal Sorting Complexes Required for Transport / metabolism*
  • Golgi Apparatus / genetics
  • Golgi Apparatus / metabolism
  • Lysosomes / genetics
  • Lysosomes / metabolism
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism*
  • Protein Folding*
  • Protein Transport / physiology
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / metabolism*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins / metabolism*
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligase Complexes / genetics
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligase Complexes / metabolism*
  • Vacuoles / genetics
  • Vacuoles / metabolism


  • Endosomal Sorting Complexes Required for Transport
  • Membrane Proteins
  • SLG1 protein, S cerevisiae
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligase Complexes
  • RSP5 protein, S cerevisiae