Assembly of Membrane Proteins in Escherichia coli. A Genetic Approach
Each type of membrane present in a eukaryotic cell contains a specific set of proteins. With the exception of some of the proteins present in mitochondria or chloroplasts, and formed within these organelles, all membrane proteins are synthesized in the cytoplasm. There seems to be a consensus that these proteins can follow either of two routes from their site of formation to their final location. The first route was originally uncovered for secreted proteins. It starts by a synthesis on polysomes bound to the rough endoplasmic reticulum (RER). It concerns proteins which end up in the RER itself, in the Golgi apparatus, in lysosomes, in the plasma membrane, and perhaps in other organelles as well (Palade 1975; Rothman and Lenard 1977; Katz et al. 1977; Rothman and Lodish 1977). The other route is that followed by several of the proteins which end up in mitochondria or chloroplasts. These are synthesized on free polysomes, like the cytoplasmic proteins, and they reach directly their final location (Chua and Schmidt 1978, 1979; Highfield and Ellis 1978; Schatz 1979; Raymond and Shore 1979; Poyton and McKemmie 1979).
KeywordsRough Endoplasmic Reticulum Outer Membrane Protein Hybrid Gene Hybrid Protein Signal Hypothesis
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