The key endosomal regulators Rab5, EEA1, and APPL1 are frequently applied in fluorescence microscopy to mark early endosomes, whereas Rab7 is used as a marker for late endosomes and lysosomes. However, endogenous levels of these proteins localize poorly in immuno-EM, and systematic studies on their native ultrastructural distributions are lacking. To address this gap, we here present a quantitative, on-section correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM) approach. Using the sensitivity of fluorescence microscopy, we label hundreds of organelles that are subsequently visualized by EM and classified by ultrastructure. We show that Rab5 predominantly marks small, endocytic vesicles and early endosomes. EEA1 colocalizes with Rab5 on early endosomes, but unexpectedly also labels Rab5-negative late endosomes, which are positive for PI(3)P but lack Rab7. APPL1 is restricted to small Rab5-positive, tubulo-vesicular profiles. Rab7 primarily labels late endosomes and lysosomes. These data increase our understanding of the structural–functional organization of the endosomal system and introduce quantitative CLEM as a sensitive alternative for immuno-EM.

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