A study was conducted to examine the effect of multivesicular body (MVB) sorting on membrane protein function. MVB sorting reaction within the endocytic pathway showed a cellular mechanism for terminating the function of integral membrane proteins destined for degradation within the lysosome. It was found that MVB sorting recognized a subset of endocytic cargoes and concentrated them into regions within the endosomal membrane. Fusion of the MVB with the lysosome delivered intralumenal vesicles to the hydrolytic environment of the lysosome, where the lipid and protein contents of the vesicles were degraded. The topology of membrane invagination into the endosomal lumen during MVB sorting was found similar to the budding process. The MVB sorting can be used for viral replication and for lysosomal delivery of endocytosed proteins.
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