The AP2 adaptor complex works on the plasma membrane to internalise cargo in clathrin-mediated endocytosis. It is a stable complex of four proteins which give rise to a structure that has a core domain and two appendage domains attached to the core domain by polypeptide linkers. These appendage domains are sometimes called ears. The core domain binds to the membrane and to cargo destined for internalisation. The alpha and beta appendage domains bind to accessory proteins and to clathrin. Their interactions allow the temporal and spatial regulation of the assembly of clathrin-coated vesicles and their endocytosis.
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