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Keywords:

  • Arabidopsis thaliana;
  • endoplasmic reticulum;
  • FRAP;
  • Golgi;
  • organelle shape;
  • plant;
  • protein transport;
  • reticulon;
  • secretory pathway

We have cloned a member of the reticulon (RTN) family of Arabidopsis thaliana (RTNLB13). When fused to yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) and expressed in tobacco leaf epidermal cells, RTNLB13 is localized in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Coexpression of a soluble ER luminal marker reveals that YFP-tagged, myc-tagged or untagged RTNLB13 induces severe morphological changes to the lumen of the ER. We show, using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) analysis, that RTNLB13 overexpression greatly reduces diffusion of soluble proteins within the ER lumen, possibly by introducing constrictions into the membrane. In spite of this severe phenotype, Golgi shape, number and dynamics appear unperturbed and secretion of a reporter protein remains unaffected.