Loss-of-function of the ciliopathy protein Cc2d2a disorganizes the vesicle fusion machinery at the periciliary membrane and indirectly affects Rab8-trafficking in zebrafish photoreceptors

Ojeda Naharros, I., Gesemann, M., Mateos, J.M., Barmettler, G., Forbes, A., Ziegler, U., Neuhauss, S.C.F., Bachmann-Gagescu, R.
PLoS Genetics   13: e1007150 (Journal)
Registered Authors
Bachmann-Gagescu, Ruxandra, Forbes, Austin, Gesemann, Matthias, Neuhauss, Stephan
MeSH Terms
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Biological Transport
  • Cell Movement
  • Cilia/genetics
  • Cilia/metabolism
  • Humans
  • Membranes/metabolism
  • Opsins/genetics
  • Opsins/metabolism
  • Photoreceptor Cells, Vertebrate/metabolism
  • Protein Transport
  • Vesicular Transport Proteins/genetics*
  • Vesicular Transport Proteins/metabolism*
  • Zebrafish
  • Zebrafish Proteins/genetics*
  • Zebrafish Proteins/metabolism*
  • rab GTP-Binding Proteins/genetics
  • rab GTP-Binding Proteins/metabolism*
29281629 Full text @ PLoS Genet.
Ciliopathies are human disorders caused by dysfunction of primary cilia, ubiquitous organelles involved in transduction of environmental signals such as light sensation in photoreceptors. Concentration of signal detection proteins such as opsins in the ciliary membrane is achieved by RabGTPase-regulated polarized vesicle trafficking and by a selective barrier at the ciliary base, the transition zone (TZ). Dysfunction of the TZ protein CC2D2A causes Joubert/Meckel syndromes in humans and loss of ciliary protein localization in animal models, including opsins in retinal photoreceptors. The link between the TZ and upstream vesicle trafficking has been little explored to date. Moreover, the role of the small GTPase Rab8 in opsin-carrier vesicle (OCV) trafficking has been recently questioned in a mouse model. Using correlative light and electron microscopy and live imaging in zebrafish photoreceptors, we provide the first live characterization of Rab8-mediated trafficking in photoreceptors in vivo. Our results support a possibly redundant role for both Rab8a/b paralogs in OCV trafficking, based on co-localization of Rab8 and opsins in vesicular structures, and joint movement of Rab8-tagged particles with opsin. We further investigate the role of the TZ protein Cc2d2a in Rab8-mediated trafficking using cc2d2a zebrafish mutants and identify a requirement for Cc2d2a in the latest step of OCV trafficking, namely vesicle fusion. Progressive accumulation of opsin-containing vesicles in the apical portion of photoreceptors lacking Cc2d2a is caused by disorganization of the vesicle fusion machinery at the periciliary membrane with mislocalization and loss of the t-SNAREs SNAP25 and Syntaxin3 and of the exocyst component Exoc4. We further observe secondary defects on upstream Rab8-trafficking with cytoplasmic accumulation of Rab8. Taken together, our results support participation of Rab8 in OCV trafficking and identify a novel role for the TZ protein Cc2d2a in fusion of incoming ciliary-directed vesicles, through organization of the vesicle fusion machinery at the periciliary membrane.
Genes / Markers
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Mutations / Transgenics
Human Disease / Model
Sequence Targeting Reagents
Engineered Foreign Genes