RIN proteins serve as guanine nucleotide exchange factors for Rab5a. They are characterized by the presence of a RIN homology domain and a C-terminal Vps9 domain. Currently three family members have been described and analyzed. Here we report the identification of a novel RIN family member, Rin-like (Rinl), that represents a new interaction partner of the receptor tyrosine kinase MuSK, which is an essential key regulator of neuromuscular synapse development. Rinl is localized to neuromuscular synapses but shows the highest expression in thymus and spleen. Rinl preferentially binds to nucleotide-free Rab5a and catalyzes the exchange of GDP for GTP. Moreover, Rinl also binds GDP-bound Rab22 and increases the GDP/GTP exchange implicating Rinl in endocytotic processes regulated by Rab5a and Rab22. Interestingly, Rinl shows a higher catalytic rate for Rab22 compared to Rab5a. Rinl is closely associated with the cytoskeleton and thus contributes to the spatial control of Rab5a and Rab22 signaling at actin-positive compartments. Most importantly, overexpression of Rinl affects fluid-phase as well as EGFR endocytosis.
► Rinl is a novel member of the RIN protein family and specifically binds MuSK. ► Rinl catalyzes the nucleotide exchange on Rab5a and Rab22. ► Rinl shows a higher catalytic activity for Rab22 than Rab5a. ► Rinl regulates the localization of Rab5a and Rab22 to actin-positive membrane ruffles. ► Overexpression of Rinl increases both fluid-phase and receptor-mediated endocytosis.