rab27A, which encodes a small GTP-binding protein, was recently identified as a gene in which mutations caused human hemophagocytic syndrome (Griscelli syndrome) and ashen mice, which exhibit defects in melanosome transport as well as in regulated granule exocytosis in cytotoxic T lymphocytes. However, little is known about the molecular mechanism of Rab27A-dependent membrane trafficking or the specific effector molecules of Rab27A. In this study, we discovered that the Slp (synaptotagmin-like protein) homology domain (SHD) of Slp1-3 and Slac2-a/b specifically and directly binds the GTP-bound form of Rab27A both in vitro and in intact cells but not of the other Rabs tested (Rab1, Rab2, Rab3A, Rab4, Rab5A, Rab6A, Rab7, Rab8, Rab9, Rab10, Rab11A, Rab17, Rab18, Rab20, Rab22, Rab23, Rab25, Rab28, and Rab37). Immunocytochemical analysis revealed that Slp2 (or Slp1) colocalized with Rab27A in the melanosomes of melanoma cells. Slp2 and Rab27A were distributed to the periphery of the cells (especially at the dendritic tips) in the wild-type melanoma cells, whereas they accumulated in the perinuclear region in the melanosome transport-defective cells (S91/Cloudman). These results strongly indicated that the SHD of Slp1-3 and Slac2 functions as an in vivo Rab27A binding domain.
ASJC Scopus subject areas