Spatial control of exocytosis underlies polarized cell morphogenesis. In rod-shaped fission yeast, exocytic vesicles are conveyed along the actin cytoskeleton by myosin V motors toward growing cell ends [1, 2], the major sites for exocytosis. However, actomyosin-based vesicle delivery is dispensable for polarized secretion and cylindrical cell shape of fission yeast . Thus, additional mechanisms should function in the spatial confinement of exocytosis. Here we report a novel role of endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-plasma membrane (PM) contacts in restricting exocytic sites for polarized fission yeast morphogenesis. We show that fission yeast cells deficient in both ER-PM contacts and actomyosin-based secretory vesicle transport display aberrant globular cell shape due to delocalized exocytosis. By artificially manipulating the strength and extent of ER-PM contacts in wild-type and mutant cells that exhibit induced ectopic exocytosis, we demonstrate that exocytosis and ER-PM contact formation are spatially incompatible. Furthermore, extensive ER-PM junctions at the non-growing lateral cell cortex prevent the PM from exocytic vesicle tethering and hence attenuate growth potential at cell sides. We thus propose that ER-PM contacts function as a new morphogenetic module by limiting exocytosis to growing cell tips in fission yeast. A similar mechanism could apply to other cell types with prominent ER-PM contacts.
Current Biology – Elsevier
Published: Jan 8, 2018
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