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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Mannose 6-phosphate receptors, Niemann-Pick C2 protein, and lysosomal cholesterol accumulation.

Niemann-Pick disease type C (NPC), caused by mutations in the NPC1 gene or the NPC2 gene, is characterized by the accumulation of unesterified cholesterol and other lipids in endo/lysosomal compartments. NPC2 is a small, soluble, lysosomal protein that is targeted to this compartment via a mannose 6-phosphate-inhibitable pathway. To obtain insight into the roles of mannose 6-phosphate receptors (MPRs) in NPC2 targeting, we here examine the trafficking and function of NPC2 in fibroblast lines deficient in one or both of the two MPRs, MPR46 and MPR300. We demonstrate that either MPR alone is sufficient to transport NPC2 to the endo/lysosomal compartment, although MPR300 seems to be more efficient than MPR46. In the absence of both MPRs, NPC2 is secreted into the culture medium, and only a small amount of intracellular NPC2 can be detected, mainly in the endoplasmic reticulum. This leads to massive accumulation of unesterified cholesterol in the endo/lysosomal compartment of the MPR46/300-deficient fibroblasts, a phenotype similar to that of the NPC patient fibroblasts. In addition, we observed an upregulation of NPC1 protein and mRNA in the MPR-double-deficient cells. Taken together, our results suggest that the lysosomal targeting of NPC2 is strictly dependent on MPRs in fibroblasts.[1]


  1. Mannose 6-phosphate receptors, Niemann-Pick C2 protein, and lysosomal cholesterol accumulation. Willenborg, M., Schmidt, C.K., Braun, P., Landgrebe, J., von Figura, K., Saftig, P., Eskelinen, E.L. J. Lipid Res. (2005) [Pubmed]
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