, Volume 249, Supplement 1, pp 11–18 | Cite as

The Gp78 ubiquitin ligase: probing endoplasmic reticulum complexity

  • Pascal St. Pierre
  • Ivan R. NabiEmail author
Review Article


The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) has been classically divided, based on electron microscopy analysis, into parallel ribosome-studded rough ER sheets and a tubular smooth ER network. Recent studies have identified molecular constituents of the ER, the reticulons and DP1, that drive ER tubule formation and whose expression determines expression of ER sheets and tubules and thereby rough and smooth ER. However, segregation of the ER into only two domains remains simplistic and multiple functionally distinct ER domains necessarily exist. In this review, we will discuss the sub-organization of the ER in different domains focusing on the localization and role of the gp78 ubiquitin ligase in the mitochondria-associated smooth ER and on the evidence for a quality control ERAD domain.


Ubiquitin ligase Endoplasmic reticulum Mitochondria ERAD 



Work on this project is supported by a grant from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR MT-15132). PSP is the recipient of a CIHR Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarship.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material


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© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Cellular and Physiological SciencesLife Sciences Institute, University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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