Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Genetic studies have suggested a functional link between cholesterol/sphingolipid metabolism and endocytic membrane traffic. Here we show that perturbing the cholesterol/sphingomyelin balance in the plasma membrane results in the massive formation of clusters of narrow endocytic tubular invaginations positive for N-BAR proteins. These tubules are intensely positive for sphingosine kinase 1 (SPHK1). SPHK1 is also targeted to physiologically occurring early endocytic intermediates, and is highly enriched in nerve terminals, which are cellular compartments specialized for exo/endocytosis. Membrane recruitment of SPHK1 involves a direct, curvature-sensitive interaction with the lipid bilayer mediated by a hydrophobic patch on the enzymes surface. The knockdown of SPHKs results in endocytic recycling defects, and a mutation that disrupts the hydrophobic patch of Caenorhabditis elegans SPHK fails to rescue the neurotransmission defects in loss-of-function mutants of this enzyme. Our studies support a role for sphingosine phosphorylation in endocytic membrane trafficking beyond the established function of sphingosine-1-phosphate in intercellular signalling. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Original publication

DOI

10.1038/ncb2987

Type

Journal article

Journal

Nature Cell Biology

Publication Date

01/01/2014

Volume

16

Pages

652 - 662