MemPrep, a new technology for isolating organellar membranes provides fingerprints of lipid bilayer stress

John Reinhard, Leonhard Starke, Christian Klose, Per Haberkant, Henrik Hammarén, Frank Stein, Ofir Klein, Charlotte Berhorst, Heike Stumpf, James P. Sáenz, Jochen Hub, Maya Schuldiner, Robert Ernst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Biological membranes have a stunning ability to adapt their composition in response to physiological stress and metabolic challenges. Little is known how such perturbations affect individual organelles in eukaryotic cells. Pioneering work has provided insights into the subcellular distribution of lipids in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, but the composition of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane, which also crucially regulates lipid metabolism and the unfolded protein response, remains insufficiently characterized. Here, we describe a method for purifying organelle membranes from yeast, MemPrep. We demonstrate the purity of our ER membrane preparations by proteomics, and document the general utility of MemPrep by isolating vacuolar membranes. Quantitative lipidomics establishes the lipid composition of the ER and the vacuolar membrane. Our findings provide a baseline for studying membrane protein biogenesis and have important implications for understanding the role of lipids in regulating the unfolded protein response (UPR). The combined preparative and analytical MemPrep approach uncovers dynamic remodeling of ER membranes in stressed cells and establishes distinct molecular fingerprints of lipid bilayer stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1653-1685
Number of pages33
JournalEMBO Journal
Issue number8
Early online date15 Mar 2024
StatePublished - 16 Apr 2024


  • ER Stress
  • Lipid Bilayer Stress
  • MemPrep
  • Organelle Lipidomics
  • UPR

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology


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