Identification and characterization of mouse Rab32 by mRNA and protein expression analysis

Karine A. Cohen-Solal, Raman Sood, Yari Marin, Steven M. Crespo-Carbone, Daniel Sinsimer, Jeffrey J. Martino, Christiane Robbins, Izabela Makalowska, Jeffrey Trent, Suzie Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Rab proteins, a subfamily of the ras superfamily, are low molecular weight GTPases involved in the regulation of intracellular vesicular transport. Cloning of human RAB32 was recently described. Presently, we report the cloning and characterization of the mouse homologue of Rab32. We show that murine Rab32 exhibits a ubiquitous expression pattern, with tissue-specific variation in expression level. Three cell types with highly specialized organelles, melanocytes, platelets and mast cells, exhibit relatively high level of Rab32. We show that in murine amelanotic in vitro transformed melanocytes as well as in human amelanotic metastatic melanoma cell lines, the expression of Rab32 is markedly reduced or absent, in parallel with the loss of expression of two key enzymes for the production of melanin, tyrosinase and Tyrp1. Therefore, in both mouse and human systems, the expression of Rab32 correlates with the expression of genes involved in pigment production. However, in melanoma samples, amelanotic due to a mutation in the tyrosinase gene, the expression of Rab32 remains at levels comparable to those observed in pigmented melanoma samples. Finally, we observed co-localization of Rab32 and the melanosomal proteins, Tyrp1 and Dct, indicating an association of Rab32 with melanosomes. Based on these data, we propose the inclusion of Rab32 to the so-called melanocyte/platelet family of Rab proteins.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-75
Number of pages8
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Proteins and Proteomics
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Sep 23 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Melanosome
  • Rab protein
  • Storage disease
  • Transport

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


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