Mutations in RPGRIP1L result in severe human diseases called ciliopathies. To unravel the molecular function of RPGRIP1L, we analyzed Rpgrip1l(-/-) mouse embryos, which display a ciliopathy phenotype and die, at the latest, around birth. In these embryos, cilia-mediated signaling was severely disturbed. Defects in Shh signaling suggested that the Rpgrip1l deficiency causes an impairment of protein degradation and protein processing. Indeed, we detected a cilia-dependent decreased proteasomal activity in the absence of Rpgrip1l. We found different proteasomal components localized to cilia and identified Psmd2, a component of the regulatory proteasomal 19S subunit, as an interaction partner for Rpgrip1l. Quantifications of proteasomal substrates demonstrated that Rpgrip1l regulates proteasomal activity specifically at the basal body. Our study suggests that Rpgrip1l controls ciliary signaling by regulating the activity of the ciliary proteasome via Psmd2.
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