FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology

Lipid raft-associated stomatin enhances cell fusion.

PMID 27663861


Membrane fusions that occur during vesicle transport, virus infection, and tissue development, involve receptors that mediate membrane contact and initiate fusion and effectors that execute membrane reorganization and fusion pore formation. Some of these fusogenic receptors/effectors are preferentially recruited to lipid raft membrane microdomains. Therefore, major constituents of lipid rafts, such as stomatin, may be involved in the regulation of cell-cell fusion. Stomatin produced in cells can be released to the extracellular environment, either through protein refolding to pass across lipid bilayer or through exosome trafficking. We report that cells expressing more stomatin or exposed to exogenous stomatin are more prone to undergoing cell fusion. During osteoclastogenesis, depletion of stomatin inhibited cell fusion but had little effect on tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase production. Moreover, in stomatin transgenic mice, increased cell fusion leading to enhanced bone resorption and subsequent osteoporosis were observed. With its unique molecular topology, stomatin forms molecular assembly within lipid rafts or on the appositional plasma membranes, and promotes membrane fusion by modulating fusogenic protein engagement.-Lee, J.-H., Hsieh, C.-F., Liu, H.-W., Chen, C.-Y., Wu, S.-C., Chen, T.-W., Hsu, C.-S., Liao, Y.-H., Yang, C.-Y., Shyu, J.-F., Fischer, W. B., Lin, C.-H. Lipid raft-associated stomatin enhances cell fusion.