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    Signal peptides (SPs) consist of short peptide sequences present at the N-terminal of newly synthesizing proteins and act as a zip code for the translocation of the proteins to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). It was thought that the SPs are intracellularly degraded after translocation to the ER; however, recent studies showed cleaved SPs have diverse roles for controlling cell functions in auto- and/or intercellular manners. In addition, it still remains obscure how SP fragments translocate away from the site where they are produced. Extracellular vesicles (EV) are important for intercellular communication and can transport functional molecules to specific cells. In this study, we show that SPs are involved in EV from T-REx AspALP cells that were transfected with a human APP SP-inducible expression vector. There was no difference in the average particle size or particle concentration of EV collected from T-REx AspALP cells and T-REx Mock cells. When the SP content in the EV was examined by mass spectrometry, the C-terminal fragment of APP SP was identified in the exosomes (SEV) of T-REx AspALP cells. In our preparation of SEV fractions, no ER-specific proteins were detected; therefore, SPs may be included in SEV but not in the debris of degraded ER. This is the first indication that SPs are secreted from cells via EV. Copyright © 2021 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


    Kenji Ono, Mikio Niwa, Hiromi Suzuki, Nahoko Bailey Kobayashi, Tetsuhiko Yoshida, Makoto Sawada. Secretion of signal peptides via extracellular vesicles. Biochemical and biophysical research communications. 2021 Jun 30;560:21-26

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    PMID: 33964503

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