Truncation mutants define and locate cytoplasmic barriers to lateral mobility of membrane glycoproteins

Michael Edidin, Martha C. Zúñiga, Michael P. Sheetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The lateral mobility of cell membrane glycoproteins is often restricted by dynamic barriers. These barriers have been detected by measurements of fluorescence photobleaching and recovery (FPR) and barrier-free path (BFP). To define the location and properties of the barriers, we compared the lateral mobility, measured by FPR and BFP, of wild-type class I major histocompatibility complex (MHC) membrane glycoproteins with the lateral mobility of mutant class I MHC glycoproteins truncated in their cytoplasmic domains. Mutants with 0 or 4 residues in the cytoplasmic domain were as mobile as lipid-anchored class I MHC molecules, molecules whose lateral mobility is relatively unrestricted by barriers. In contrast, mobility of class I MHC molecules with 7-residue cytoplasmic domains was as restricted as mobility of class I molecules with full-length, 31-residue cytoplasmic domains. Though some of the difference between the mobilities of mutants with 4- or 0-residue domains and the other class I molecules may be due to differences in the net charge of the cytoplasmic domain, FPR measurements of the mobility of molecules with 7-residue domains show that length of the cytoplasmic domain has an important influence on the lateral mobility. Model calculations suggest that the barriers to lateral mobility are 2-3 nm below the membrane bilayer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3378-3382
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 12 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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