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Pfanner, Nikolaus and Neupert, Walter (1987): Distinct steps in the import of ADP/ATP carrier into mitochondria. In: The Journal of Biological Chemistry, Vol. 262, No. 16: pp. 7528-7536
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Abstract

Transport of the precursor to the ADP/ATP carrier from the cytosol into the mitochondrial inner membrane was resolved into several consecutive steps. The precursor protein was trapped at distinct stages of the import pathway and subsequently chased to the mature form. In a first reaction, the precursor interacts with a protease-sensitive component on the mitochondrial surface. It then reaches intermediate sites in the outer membrane which are saturable and where it is protected against proteases. This translocation intermediate can be extracted at alkaline pH. We suggest that it is anchored to the membrane by a so far unknown proteinaceous component. The membrane potential delta psi-dependent entrance of the ADP/ATP carrier into the inner membrane takes place at contact sites between outer and inner membranes. Completion of translocation into the inner membrane can occur in the absence of delta psi. A cytosolic component which is present in reticulocyte lysate and which interacts with isolated mitochondria is required for the specific binding of the precursor to mitochondria.