Systematic analysis of membrane contact sites in Saccharomyces cerevisiae uncovers modulators of cellular lipid distribution

Inês Gomes Castro, Shawn P Shortill, Samantha Katarzyna Dziurdzik, Angela Cadou, Suriakarthiga Ganesan, Rosario Valenti, Yotam David, Michael Davey, Carsten Mattes, Ffion B Thomas, Reut Ester Avraham, Hadar Meyer, Amir Fadel, Emma J Fenech, Robert Ernst, Vanina Zaremberg, Tim P Levine, Christopher Stefan, Elizabeth Conibear, Maya Schuldiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Actively maintained close appositions between organelle membranes, also known as contact sites, enable the efficient transfer of biomolecules between cellular compartments. Several such sites have been described as well as their tethering machineries. Despite these advances we are still far from a comprehensive understanding of the function and regulation of most contact sites. To systematically characterize contact site proteomes, we established a high-throughput screening approach in Saccharomyces cerevisiae based on co-localization imaging. We imaged split fluorescence reporters for six different contact sites, several of which are poorly characterized, on the background of 1165 strains expressing a mCherry-tagged yeast protein that has a cellular punctate distribution (a hallmark of contact sites), under regulation of the strong TEF2 promoter. By scoring both co-localization events and effects on reporter size and abundance, we discovered over 100 new potential contact site residents and effectors in yeast. Focusing on several of the newly identified residents, we identified three homologs of Vps13 and Atg2 that are residents of multiple contact sites. These proteins share their lipid transport domain, thus expanding this family of lipid transporters. Analysis of another candidate, Ypr097w, which we now call Lec1 (Lipid-droplet Ergosterol Cortex 1), revealed that this previously uncharacterized protein dynamically shifts between lipid droplets and the cell cortex, and plays a role in regulation of ergosterol distribution in the cell. Overall, our analysis expands the universe of contact site residents and effectors and creates a rich database to mine for new functions, tethers, and regulators.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere74602
Number of pages31
StatePublished - 10 Nov 2022


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