Numb regulates endocytosis in many metazoans, but the mechanism by which it functions is not completely understood. Here we report that the Caenorhabditis elegans Numb ortholog, NUM-1A, a regulator of endocytic recycling, binds the C isoform of transbilayer amphipath transporter-1 (TAT-1), a P4 family adenosine triphosphatase and putative aminophospholipid translocase that is required for proper endocytic trafficking. We demonstrate that TAT-1 is differentially spliced during development and that TAT-1C-specific splicing occurs in the intestine where NUM-1A is known to function. NUM-1A and TAT-1C colocalize in vivo. We have mapped the binding site to an NXXF motif in TAT-1C. This motif is not required for TAT-1C function but is required for NUM-1A's ability to inhibit recycling. We demonstrate that num-1A and tat-1 defects are both suppressed by the loss of the activity of PSSY-1, a phosphatidylserine (PS) synthase. PS is mislocalized in intestinal cells with defects in tat-1 or num-1A function. We propose that NUM-1A inhibits recycling by inhibiting TAT-1C's ability to translocate PS across the membranes of recycling endosomes.
© 2011 John Wiley & Sons A/S.