In the preceding paper [Riedel & Fasold (1987) Biochem. J. 241, 203-212] we have described a procedure for the preparation of nuclear-envelope vesicles (NE vesicles) from rat liver nuclei. These vesicles, which are largely free of components of the nuclear interior, were employed in an assay system in vitro to study protein translocation across the NE. We found that nuclear proteins such as histones, high-mobility-group proteins and acidic chromosomal proteins are specifically taken up and accumulated in the NE vesicles, whereas there is little or no affinity for non-nuclear proteins like immunoglobulin, myoglobin and cytochrome c. The kinetics of histone uptake into the NE vesicles are similar to those obtained for whole rat liver nuclei, and comparative studies with non-vesicular NEs prepared by deoxyribonuclease I-treatment (DNAase-NEs) indicate that the NE of the vesicles affects the uptake kinetics and increases the capacity for nuclear proteins. The uptake of histones into NE vesicles, but not the binding to DNAase-NEs, can be stimulated by GTP and GDP. Furthermore, we found that even very large molecules can be entrapped in the vesicles during their preparation. These results indicate that the NE vesicles might provide a useful system in vitro with which to investigate the structures and mechanisms involved in protein translocation across the NE.
- © 1987 London: The Biochemical Society