The specific phosphatase inhibitor okadaic acid (OA) induced fragmentation of the Golgi apparatus in interphase HeLa cells. Immunoelectron microscopy for galactosyltransferase identified a major Golgi fragment composed of a cluster of vesicles and tubules that was morphologically indistinguishable from the ‘Golgi cluster’ previously described in mitotic cells. The presence of homogeneous immunofluorescence staining for galactosyltransferase in OA-treated cells also suggested that isolated Golgi vesicles, previously found in mitotic cells, existed along with the clusters. After removal of OA, both clusters and vesicles appeared to participate in a reassembly pathway that strongly resembled that occurring during telophase. OA also induced inhibition of intracellular transport, another feature of mitotic cells. OA treatment prevented newly synthesised G protein of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) from acquiring resistance to endoglycosidase H and from arriving at the cell surface. In addition, fluid phase endocytosis of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) was reduced to less than 10% of control values. All these effects were dose-dependent and reversible. OA should be a useful tool to study the Golgi division and membrane traffic.

This content is only available via PDF.