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SNARE proteins (VAMP2, syntaxin4, and SNAP23) have been thought to play a key role in GLUT4 trafficking by mediating the tethering, docking and subsequent fusion of GLUT4-containing vesicles with the plasma membrane. The precise functions of these proteins have remained elusive, however. We have now shown that depletion of the vesicle SNARE (v-SNARE) VAMP2 by RNA interference in 3T3-L1 adipocytes inhibited the fusion of GLUT4 vesicles with the plasma membrane but did not affect tethering of the vesicles to the membrane. In contrast, depletion of the target SNAREs (t-SNAREs) syntaxin4 or SNAP23 resulted in impairment of GLUT4 vesicle tethering to the plasma membrane. Our results indicate that the t-SNAREs syntaxin4 and SNAP23 are indispensable for the tethering of GLUT4 vesicles to the plasma membrane, whereas the v-SNARE VAMP2 is not required for this step but is essential for the subsequent fusion event. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Takayuki Kawaguchi, Yoshikazu Tamori, Hajime Kanda, Mari Yoshikawa, Sanshiro Tateya, Naonobu Nishino, Masato Kasuga. The t-SNAREs syntaxin4 and SNAP23 but not v-SNARE VAMP2 are indispensable to tether GLUT4 vesicles at the plasma membrane in adipocyte. Biochemical and biophysical research communications. 2010 Jan 15;391(3):1336-41

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PMID: 20006577

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