Protrudin Induces Neurite Formation by Directional Membrane Trafficking

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Science  03 Nov 2006:
Vol. 314, Issue 5800, pp. 818-821
DOI: 10.1126/science.1134027

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Guanosine triphosphatases of the Rab family are key regulators of membrane trafficking, with Rab11 playing a specific role in membrane recycling. We identified a mammalian protein, protrudin, that promoted neurite formation through interaction with the guanosine diphosphate (GDP)–bound form of Rab11. Phosphorylation of protrudin by extracellular signal–regulated kinase (ERK) in response to nerve growth factor promoted protrudin association with Rab11-GDP. Down-regulation of protrudin by RNA interference induced membrane extension in all directions and inhibited neurite formation. Thus, protrudin regulates Rab11-dependent membrane recycling to promote the directional membrane trafficking required for neurite formation.

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