Biophysical parameters of the Sec14 phospholipid exchange cycle - Effect of lipid packing in membranes.
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Sec14, a yeast phosphatidylinositol/phosphatidylcholine transfer protein, functions at the trans-Golgi membranes. It lacks domains involved in protein-protein or protein-lipid interactions and consists solely of the Sec14 domain; hence, the mechanism underlying Sec14 function at proper sites remains unclear. In this study, we focused on the lipid packing of membranes and evaluated its association with in vitro Sec14 lipid transfer activity. Phospholipid transfer assays using pyrene-labelled phosphatidylcholine suggested that increased membrane curvature as well as the incorporation of phosphatidylethanolamine accelerated the lipid transfer. The quantity of membrane-bound Sec14 significantly increased in these membranes, indicating that "packing defects" of the membranes promote the membrane binding and phospholipid transfer of Sec14. Increased levels of phospholipid unsaturation promoted Sec14-mediated PC transfer, but had little effect on the membrane binding of the protein. Our results demonstrate the possibility that the location and function of Sec14 are regulated by the lipid packing states produced by a translocase activity at the trans-Golgi network.