Munc13-4 reconstitutes calcium-dependent SNARE-mediated membrane fusion

Kristin L. Boswell, Declan J. James, Joseph M. Esquibel, Stephen Bruinsma, Ryutaro Shirakawa, Hisanori Horiuchi, Thomas F.J. Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)


Munc13-4 is a widely expressed member of the CAPS/Munc13 protein family proposed to function in priming secretory granules for exocytosis. Munc13-4 contains N- and C-terminal C2 domains (C2A and C2B) predicted to bind Ca 2+, but Ca 2+-dependent regulation of Munc13-4 activity has not been described. The C2 domains bracket a predicted SNARE-binding domain, but whether Munc13-4 interacts with SNARE proteins is unknown. We report that Munc13-4 bound Ca 2+ and restored Ca 2+-dependent granule exocytosis to permeable cells (platelets, mast, and neuroendocrine cells) dependent on putative Ca 2+-binding residues in C2A and C2B. Munc13-4 exhibited Ca 2+-stimulated SNARE interactions dependent on C2A and Ca 2+-dependent membrane binding dependent on C2B. In an apparent coupling of membrane and SNARE binding, Munc13-4 stimulated SNARE-dependent liposome fusion dependent on putative Ca 2+-binding residues in both C2A and C2B domains. Munc13-4 is the first priming factor shown to promote Ca 2+-dependent SNARE complex formation and SNARE-mediated liposome fusion. These properties of Munc13-4 suggest its function as a Ca 2+ sensor at ratelimiting priming steps in granule exocytosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)301-312
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Apr

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Munc13-4 reconstitutes calcium-dependent SNARE-mediated membrane fusion'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this