Munc18-1 is a neuronal protein that interacts with syntaxin 1 and is required for synaptic vesicle exocytosis. We have now identified two Munc18-1-interacting proteins called Mint1 and Mint2 that may mediate the function of Munc18-1. Mint proteins are detectable only in brain and are composed of an N-terminal sequence that binds Munc18-1, a middle phosphotyrosine-binding domain, and two C-terminal PDZ domains thought to attach proteins to the plasma membrane. In brain, Mint proteins are part of a multimeric complex containing Munc18-1 and syntaxin that likely functions as an intermediate in synaptic vesicle docking/fusion. The phosphotyrosine-binding domain specifically binds to phosphatidylinositol phosphates known to be produced during vesicle exocytosis (Hay, J. C., Fisette, P. L., Jenkins, G. H., Fukami, K., Takonawa, T., Anderson, R. A., and Martin, T. F. J. (1995) Nature 374, 173-177). Our data suggest a model whereby local production of phosphatidylinositol phosphates may trigger the binding of vesicles to the active zone via the Mint.Munc18-1 complex in conjunction with syntaxin 1.
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