From rat livers labeled in vivo for 30 min with [35S] cys-met, we have isolated two classes of vesicular carriers operating between the Golgi complex and the basolateral (sinusoidal) plasmalemma. The starting preparation is a Golgi light fraction (GLF) isolated by flotation in a discontinuous sucrose density gradient and processed through immunoisolation on magnetic beads coated with an antibody against the last 11 aa. of the pIgA-R tail. GLF and the ensuing subfractions (bound vs nonbound) were lysed, and the lysates processed through immunoprecipitation with anti-pIgA-R and anti-albumin antibodies followed by radioactivity counting, SDS-PAGE, and fluorography. The recovery of newly synthesized pIgA-R was > 90% and the distribution was 90% vs 10% in the bound vs nonbound subfractions, respectively. Albumin radioactivity was recovered to approximately 80%, with 20% and 80% in bound vs nonbound subfractions, respectively. Other proteins studied were: (a) secretory-apolipoprotein-B, prothrombin, C3 component of the complement, and caeruloplasmin; (b) membrane-transferrin receptor, EGR-receptor, asialoglycoprotein receptor, and the glucose transporter. In all the experiments we have performed, the secretory proteins distributed up to 85% in the nonbound subfraction (large secretory vacuoles), whereas the membrane proteins were segregated up to 95% in the bound subfraction (small vesicular carriers). These results suggest that in hepatocytes, membrane and secretory proteins are transported from the Golgi to the basolateral plasmalemma by separate vesicular carriers as in glandular cells capable of constitutive and regulated secretion.

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