In the yeast secretory pathway, two genes SEC12 and SAR1, which encode a 70-kD integral membrane protein and a 21-kD GTP-binding protein, respectively, cooperate in protein transport from the ER to the Golgi apparatus. In vivo, the elevation of the SAR1 dosage suppresses temperature sensitivity of the sec12 mutant. In this paper, we show cell-free reconstitution of the ER-to-Golgi transport that depends on both of these gene products. First, the membranes from the sec12 mutant cells reproduce temperature sensitivity in the in vitro ER-to-Golgi transport reaction. Furthermore, the addition of the Sar1 protein completely suppresses this temperature-sensitive defect of the sec12 membranes. The analysis of Sar1p partially purified by E. coli expression suggests that GTP hydrolysis is essential for Sar1p to execute its function.

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