The Evolution of Organellar Coat Complexes and Organization of the Eukaryotic Cell

Michael P. Rout (Lead / Corresponding author), Mark C. Field

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

78 Citations (Scopus)


Eukaryotic cells possess a remarkably diverse range of organelles that provide compartmentalization for distinct cellular functions and are likely responsible for the remarkable success of these organisms. The origins and subsequent elaboration of these compartments represent a key aspect in the transition between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cellular forms. The protein machinery required to build, maintain, and define many membranebound compartments is encoded by several paralog families, including small GTPases, coiled-bundle proteins, and proteins with β-propeller and α-solenoid secondary structures. Together these proteins provide the membrane coats and control systems to structure and coordinate the endomembrane system. Mechanistically and evolutionarily, they unite not only secretory or endocytic organelles but also the flagellum and nucleus. The ancient origins for these families have been revealed by recent findings, providing new perspectives on the deep evolutionary processes and relationships that underlie eukaryotic cell structure. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Biochemistry Volume 86 is June 20, 2017. Please see for revised estimates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)637-657
Number of pages21
JournalAnnual Review of Biochemistry
Early online date3 May 2017
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2017


  • Journal article
  • Membrane trafficking
  • Nucleocytoplasmic transport
  • Nuclear pore complex
  • Coated vesicle
  • Coatomer
  • Clathrin
  • Intraflagellar transport,
  • Molecular evolution
  • Protocoatomer
  • Eukaryogenesis


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