Small GTPase Rab35 is an important molecular switch for endocytic recycling that regulates various cellular processes, including cytokinesis, cell migration, and neurite outgrowth. We previously showed that active Rab35 promotes nerve growth factor (NGF)-induced neurite outgrowth of PC12 cells by recruiting MICAL-L1, a multiple Rab-binding protein, to Arf6-positive recycling endosomes. However, the physiological significance of the multiple Rab-binding ability of MICAL-L1 during neurite outgrowth remained completely unknown. Here we report that Rab35 and MICAL-L1 promote the recruitment of Rab8, Rab13, and Rab36 to Arf6-positive recycling endosomes during neurite outgrowth. We found that Rab35 functions as a master Rab that determines the intracellular localization of MICAL-L1, which in turn functions as a scaffold for Rab8, Rab13, and Rab36. We further showed by functional ablation experiments that each of these downstream Rabs regulates neurite outgrowth in a non-redundant manner downstream of Rab35 and MICAL-L1, e.g. by showing that knockdown of Rab36 inhibited recruitment of Rab36-specific effector JIP4 to Arf6-positive recycling endosomes, and caused inhibition of neurite outgrowth without affecting accumulation of Rab8 and Rab13 in the same Arf6-positive area. Our findings suggest the existence of a novel mechanism that recruits multiple Rab proteins at the Arf6-positive compartment by MICAL-L1.
- Neurite outgrowth
- Recycling endosome