The G protein-coupled receptor MC4R (Melanocortin-4 Receptor) and its associated protein MRAP2 (Melanocortin Receptor-Associated Protein 2) are both essential for the regulation of food intake and body weight in humans and mice. MC4R localizes and functions at the neuronal primary cilium, a microtubule-based organelle that senses and relays extracellular signals. Here, we demonstrate that MRAP2 is critical for the ciliary localization and weight-regulating function of MC4R. Our data reveal that GPCR localization to primary cilia can require specific accessory proteins that may not be present in heterologous cell systems. Our findings also demonstrate the essential role of neuronal primary cilia localization of MC4R for adequate control of energy homeostasis and the obesity-promoting effect of genetic disruption of this pathway.
bioRxiv Subject Collection: Neuroscience