Regulated exocytosis in many permeabilized cells can be triggered by calcium and nonhydrolyzable GTP analogues. Here we examine the role of these effectors in exocytosis of constitutive vesicles using a system that reconstitutes transport between the trans-Golgi region and the plasma membrane. Transport is assayed by two independent methods: the movement of a transmembrane glycoprotein (vesicular stomatitis virus glycoprotein [VSV G protein]) to the cell surface; and the release of a soluble marker, sulfated glycosaminoglycan (GAG) chains, that have been synthesized and radiolabeled in the trans-Golgi. The plasma membrane of CHO cells was selectively perforated with the bacterial cytolysin streptolysin-O. These perforated cells allow exchange of ions and cytosolic proteins but retain intracellular organelles and transport vesicles. Incubation of the semi-intact cells with ATP and a cytosolic fraction results in transport of VSV G protein and GAG chains to the cell surface. The transport reaction is temperature dependent, requires hydrolyzable ATP, and is inhibited by N-ethylmaleimide. Nonhydrolyzable GTP analogs such as GTP gamma S, which stimulate the fusion of regulated secretory granules, completely abolish constitutive secretion. The rate and extent of constitutive transport between the trans-Golgi and the plasma membrane is independent of free Ca2+ concentrations. This is in marked contrast to fusion of regulated secretory granules with the plasma membrane, and transport between the ER and the cis-Golgi (Beckers, C. J. M., and W. E. Balch. 1989. J. Cell Biol. 108:1245-1256; Baker, D., L. Wuestehube, R. Schekman, and D. Botstein. 1990. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 87:355-359).

This content is only available as a PDF.