Septins are GTP-binding proteins involved in several membrane remodeling mechanisms. They associate with membranes, presumably using a polybasic domain (PB1)that interacts with phosphoinositides (PIs). Membrane-bound septins assemble into microscopic structures that regulate membrane shape. How septins interact with PIs and then assemble and shape membranes is poorly understood. Here, we found that septin 9 has a second polybasic domain (PB2)conserved in the human septin family. Similar to PB1, PB2 binds specifically to PIs, and both domains are critical for septin filament formation. However, septin 9 membrane association is not dependent on these PB domains, but on putative PB-adjacent amphipathic helices. The presence of PB domains guarantees protein enrichment in PI-contained membranes, which is critical for PI-enriched organelles. In particular, we found that septin 9 PB domains control the assembly and functionality of the Golgi apparatus. Our findings offer further insight into the role of septins in organelle morphology.
- Cell Biology
- Functional Aspects of Cell Biology
- Membrane Architecture
- Molecular Interaction