The diverse functions of oxysterol-binding proteins

Sumana Raychaudhuri, William A. Prinz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

140 Scopus citations


Oxysterol-binding protein (OSBP)-related proteins (ORPs) are lipidbinding proteins that are conserved from yeast to humans. They are implicated in many cellular processes including signaling, vesicular trafficking, lipid metabolism, and nonvesicular sterol transport. All ORPs contain an OSBP-related domain (ORD) that has a hydrophobic pocket that binds a single sterol. ORDs also contain additional membranebinding surfaces, some of which bind phosphoinositides and may regulate sterol binding. Studies in yeast suggest that ORPs function as sterol transporters, perhaps in regions where organelle membranes are closely apposed. Yeast ORPs also participate in vesicular trafficking, although their role is unclear. In mammalian cells, some ORPs function as sterol sensors that regulate the assembly of protein complexes in response to changes in cholesterol levels. This review will summarize recent advances in our understanding of how ORPs bind lipids and membranes and how they function in diverse cellular processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-177
Number of pages21
JournalAnnual Review of Cell and Developmental Biology
StatePublished - Nov 10 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • cholesterol
  • lipid transport
  • lipid transport proteins
  • membrane contact sites
  • membranes
  • phosphoinositides
  • signaling
  • sterol

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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