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Söllner, Thomas; Rassow, Joachim; Wiedmann, Martin; Schlossmann, Jens; Keil, Petra; Neupert, Walter; Pfanner, Nikolaus (2. January 1992): Mapping of the protein import machinery in the mitochondrial outer membrane by crosslinking of translocation intermediates. In: Nature, Vol. 355, No. 6355: pp. 84-87


Mitochondria contain a complex machinery for the import of nuclear-encoded proteins. Receptor proteins exposed on the outer membrane surface are required for the specific binding of precursor proteins to mitochondria, either by binding of cytosolic signal recognition factors or by direct recognition of the precursor polypeptides. Subsequently, the precursors are inserted into the outer membrane at the general insertion site GIP (general insertion protein. Here we report the analysis of receptors and GIP by crosslinking of translocation intermediates and by coimmunoprecipitation. Surface-accumulated precursors were cross-linked to the receptors MOM19 and MOM72, suggesting a direct interaction of preproteins with surface receptors. We identified three novel mitochondrial outer membrane proteins, MOM7, MOMS, and MOM30 that, together with the previously identified MOM38, seem to form the GIP site and are present in the mitochondrial receptor complex.