Endocytic cargos are transported to recycling endosomes (RE) but how these sorting platforms are generated is not well understood. Here we describe our biochemical and live imaging studies of the conserved MON2-DOPEY complex in RE formation. MON2 mainly co-localized with RE marker RAB4B in peripheral dots and perinuclear region. The peripheral RE approached, interacted with, and separated from sorting nexin 3 (SNX3)-positive early endosomes (EE). Membrane-bound DOPEY2 was recruited to RE dependent upon MON2 expression, and showed binding abilities to kinesin and dynein/dynactin motor proteins. MON2-knockout impaired segregation of RE from EE and led to a decreased tubular recycling endosomal network, whereas RE was accumulated at perinuclear regions in DOPEY2-knockout cells. MON2 depletion also impaired intracellular transferrin receptor recycling, as well as retrograde transport of Wntless during its passage through RE before delivery from EE to the Golgi. Together, these data suggest that the MON2 drives separation of RE from EE and is required for efficient transport of endocytic cargo molecules.
Key words: membrane trafficking, MON2, recycling endosomes, Wntless