Eukaryotic cells are divided into distinct membrane-bound organelles with unique identities and specialized metabolic functions. Communication between organelles must take place to regulate the size, shape, and composition of individual organelles, as well as to coordinate transport between organelles. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) forms an expansive membrane network that contacts and participates in crosstalk with several other organelles in the cell, most notably the plasma membrane (PM). ER-PM junctions have well-established functions in the movement of small molecules, such as lipids and ions, between the ER and PM. Recent discoveries have revealed additional exciting roles for ER-PM junctions in the regulation of cell signaling, ER shape and architecture, and PM domain organization.
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