The small GTPase Rab32 resides on lysosomes to regulate mTORC1 signaling

Kristina Drizyte-Miller, Jing Chen, Hong Cao, Micah B. Schott, Mark A. McNiven

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Epithelial cells, such as liver-resident hepatocytes, rely heavily on the Rab family of small GTPases to perform membrane trafficking events that dictate cell physiology andmetabolism. Not surprisingly, disruption of several Rab proteins can manifest in metabolic diseases or cancer. Rab32 is expressed in many secretory epithelial cells but its role in cellular metabolism is virtually unknown. In this study, we find that Rab32 associates with lysosomes and regulates proliferation and cell size of Hep3B hepatoma and HeLa cells. Specifically, we identify that Rab32 supports the mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) signaling under basal and amino acid-stimulated conditions. Consistent with inhibited mTORC1, an increase in nuclear TFEB localization and lysosome biogenesis is also observed in Rab32-depleted cells. Finally, we find that Rab32 interacts with mTOR kinase, and that loss of Rab32 reduces the association of mTOR and mTORC1 pathway proteins with lysosomes, suggesting that Rab32 regulates lysosomal mTOR trafficking. In summary, these findings suggest that Rab32 functions as a novel regulator of cellular metabolism through supporting mTORC1 signaling. This article has an associated First Person interview with the first author of the paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberjcs236661
JournalJournal of cell science
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 2020


  • Lysosome
  • S6K
  • Small Rab GTPase
  • TFEB
  • mTORC1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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