Structural basis for the assembly of caveolae (2015–2018)
Caveolae are small invaginations of the plasma membrane and are a characteristic feature of eukaryotic
cells. Described morphologically in the early 1950s their many important functions are only just beginning to
be revealed. Caveolae are multifunctional organelles, that play a vital role in normal cellular processes such
as signalling and membrane homeostasis, and are perturbed in cancer, lipid storage and muscle diseases. A
new family of coat proteins called "cavins" have recently been discovered that are essential for the formation
of caveolae, and this proposal seeks to understand how these multiprotein complexes are assembled at the
membrane interface and control caveola function at the molecular level.