Munc 18-1 and granuphilin collaborate during insulin granule exocytosis

Alejandra Tomas, Paolo Meda, Romano Regazzi, Jeffrey E. Pessin, Philippe A. Halban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Munc 18-1 is a member of the Sec/Munc family of syntaxin-binding proteins known to bind to the plasma membrane Q-SNARE syntaxin1 and whose precise role in regulated exocytosis remains controversial. Here, we show that Munc 18-1 plays a positive role in regulated insulin secretion from pancreatic beta cells. Munc 18-1 depletion caused a loss in the secretory capacity of both transiently transfected INS 1E cells and a stable clone with tetracycline-regulated Munc 18-1 RNA interference. In addition, Munc 18-1-depleted cells exhibited defective docking of insulin granules to the plasma membrane and accumulated insulin in the trans Golgi network. Furthermore, glucose stimulation after Munc 18-1 depletion resulted in the rapid formation of autophagosomes. In contrast, overexpression of Munc 18-1 had no effect on insulin secretion. Although there was no detectable interaction between Munc 18-1 and Munc-18-interacting protein 1 or calcium/ calmodulin-dependent serine protein kinase, Munc 18-1 associated with the granular protein granuphilin. This association was regulated by glucose and was required for the specific interaction of insulin granules with syntaxin1. We conclude that Munc 18-1 and granuphilin collaborate in the docking of insulin granules to the plasma membrane in an initial fusion-incompetent state, with Munc 18-1 subsequently playing a positive role in a later stage of insulin granule exocytosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)813-832
Number of pages20
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Autophagy
  • Docking
  • Granuphilin
  • Insulin granule
  • Munc 18-1
  • Trans Golgi network

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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