G2Cdb::Gene report

Gene id
Gene symbol
Homo sapiens
catenin (cadherin-associated protein), delta 1
G00000555 (Mus musculus)

Databases (8)

ENSG00000198561 (Ensembl human gene)
1500 (Entrez Gene)
974 (G2Cdb plasticity & disease)
CTNND1 (GeneCards)
601045 (OMIM)
Marker Symbol
HGNC:2515 (HGNC)
Protein Expression
3837 (human protein atlas)
Protein Sequence
O60716 (UniProt)

Synonyms (4)

  • KIAA0384
  • p120
  • p120cas
  • p120ctn

Literature (108)

Pubmed - other

  • An acidic extracellular pH disrupts adherens junctions in HepG2 cells by Src kinases-dependent modification of E-cadherin.

    Chen Y, Chen CH, Tung PY, Huang SH and Wang SM

    Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10051, Taiwan.

    We have previously shown that culturing HepG2 cells in pH 6.6 culture medium increases the c-Src-dependent tyrosine phosphorylation of beta-catenin and induces disassembly of adherens junctions (AJs). Here, we investigated the upstream mechanism leading to this pH 6.6-induced modification of E-cadherin. In control cells cultured at pH 7.4, E-cadherin staining was linear and continuous at cell-cell contact sites. Culturing cells at pH 6.6 was not cytotoxic, and resulted in weak and discontinuous junctional E-cadherin staining, consistent with the decreased levels of E-cadherin in membrane fractions. pH 6.6 treatment activated c-Src and Fyn kinase and induced tyrosine phosphorylation of p120 catenin (p120ctn) and E-cadherin. Inhibition of Src family kinases by PP2 attenuated the pH 6.6-induced tyrosine phosphorylation of E-cadherin and p120ctn, and prevented the loss of these proteins from AJs. In addition, E-cadherin was bound to Hakai and ubiquitinated. Furthermore, pH 6.6-induced detachment of E-cadherin from AJs was blocked by pretreatment with MG132 or NH(4)Cl, indicating the involvement of ubiquitin-proteasomal/lysosomal degradation of E-cadherin. An early loss of p120ctn prior to E-cadherin detachment from AJs was noted, concomitant with a decreased association between p120ctn and E-cadherin at pH 6.6. PP2 pretreatment prevented the dissociation of these two proteins. In conclusion, pH 6.6 activated Src kinases, resulting in tyrosine phosphorylation of E-cadherin and p120ctn and a weakening of the association of E-cadherin with p120ctn and contributing to the instability of E-cadherin at AJs.

    Journal of cellular biochemistry 2009;108;4;851-9

  • GSK-3 phosphorylates delta-catenin and negatively regulates its stability via ubiquitination/proteosome-mediated proteolysis.

    Oh M, Kim H, Yang I, Park JH, Cong WT, Baek MC, Bareiss S, Ki H, Lu Q, No J, Kwon I, Choi JK and Kim K

    College of Pharmacy and Research Institute of Drug Development, Chonnam National University, Gwangju 500-757, Korea.

    Delta-catenin was first identified because of its interaction with presenilin-1, and its aberrant expression has been reported in various human tumors and in patients with Cri-du-Chat syndrome, a form of mental retardation. However, the mechanism whereby delta-catenin is regulated in cells has not been fully elucidated. We investigated the possibility that glycogen-synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) phosphorylates delta-catenin and thus affects its stability. Initially, we found that the level of delta-catenin was greater and the half-life of delta-catenin was longer in GSK-3beta(-/-) fibroblasts than those in GSK-3beta(+/+) fibroblasts. Furthermore, four different approaches designed to specifically inhibit GSK-3 activity, i.e. GSK-3-specific chemical inhibitors, Wnt-3a conditioned media, small interfering RNAs, and GSK-3alpha and -3beta kinase dead constructs, consistently showed that the levels of endogenous delta-catenin in CWR22Rv-1 prostate carcinoma cells and primary cortical neurons were increased by inhibiting GSK-3 activity. In addition, it was found that both GSK-3alpha and -3beta interact with and phosphorylate delta-catenin. The phosphorylation of DeltaC207-delta-catenin (lacking 207 C-terminal residues) and T1078A delta-catenin by GSK-3 was noticeably reduced compared with that of wild type delta-catenin, and the data from liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry analyses suggest that the Thr(1078) residue of delta-catenin is one of the GSK-3 phosphorylation sites. Treatment with MG132 or ALLN, specific inhibitors of proteosome-dependent proteolysis, increased delta-catenin levels and caused an accumulation of ubiquitinated delta-catenin. It was also found that GSK-3 triggers the ubiquitination of delta-catenin. These results suggest that GSK-3 interacts with and phosphorylates delta-catenin and thereby negatively affects its stability by enabling its ubiquitination/proteosome-mediated proteolysis.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA111891, R01 CA111891; NIA NIH HHS: AG026630, R03 AG026630

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2009;284;42;28579-89

  • CagA associates with c-Met, E-cadherin, and p120-catenin in a multiproteic complex that suppresses Helicobacter pylori-induced cell-invasive phenotype.

    Oliveira MJ, Costa AM, Costa AC, Ferreira RM, Sampaio P, Machado JC, Seruca R, Mareel M and Figueiredo C

    Institute of Molecular Pathology and Immunology, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.

    Background: Helicobacter pylori induces an invasive phenotype in gastric epithelial cells through a mechanism that requires the type IV secretion system and the phosphorylation of c-Met. The E-cadherin-catenin complex is a major component of the adherens junctions and functions as an invasion suppressor. We investigated whether E-cadherin has a role in H. pylori-induced, c-Met phosphorylation-dependent cell-invasive phenotype.

    Methods: AGS cells that lack E-cadherin and that are invasive to H. pylori stimulation were transduced with E-cadherin and infected with H. pylori. NCI-N87 cells, which endogenously express E-cadherin, were also used for infection experiments.

    Results: E-cadherin was sufficient to suppress not only H. pylori-mediated cell-invasive phenotype but also c-Met and p120-catenin tyrosine phosphorylation. H. pylori infection led to increased interactions between E-cadherin and p120-catenin, c-Met and E-cadherin, and c-Met and p120-catenin. Using in vitro infection assays, we showed that H. pylori CagA interacts with E-cadherin, p120-catenin, and c-Met. Finally, using small interfering RNA, we showed that interactions between CagA and E-cadherin and between CagA and p120-catenin were established through c-Met.

    Conclusions: We suggest that H. pylori alters the E-cadherin-catenin complex, leading to formation of a multiproteic complex composed of CagA, c-Met, E-cadherin, and p120-catenin. This complex abrogates c-Met and p120-catenin tyrosine phosphorylation and suppresses the cell-invasive phenotype induced by H. pylori.

    The Journal of infectious diseases 2009;200;5;745-55

  • Defining the human deubiquitinating enzyme interaction landscape.

    Sowa ME, Bennett EJ, Gygi SP and Harper JW

    Department of Pathology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

    Deubiquitinating enzymes (Dubs) function to remove covalently attached ubiquitin from proteins, thereby controlling substrate activity and/or abundance. For most Dubs, their functions, targets, and regulation are poorly understood. To systematically investigate Dub function, we initiated a global proteomic analysis of Dubs and their associated protein complexes. This was accomplished through the development of a software platform called CompPASS, which uses unbiased metrics to assign confidence measurements to interactions from parallel nonreciprocal proteomic data sets. We identified 774 candidate interacting proteins associated with 75 Dubs. Using Gene Ontology, interactome topology classification, subcellular localization, and functional studies, we link Dubs to diverse processes, including protein turnover, transcription, RNA processing, DNA damage, and endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation. This work provides the first glimpse into the Dub interaction landscape, places previously unstudied Dubs within putative biological pathways, and identifies previously unknown interactions and protein complexes involved in this increasingly important arm of the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway.

    Funded by: NIA NIH HHS: AG085011, R01 AG011085, R01 AG011085-16; NIDDK NIH HHS: K01 DK098285; NIGMS NIH HHS: GM054137, GM67945, R01 GM054137, R01 GM054137-14, R01 GM067945

    Cell 2009;138;2;389-403

  • Overexpression of E-cadherin on melanoma cells inhibits chemokine-promoted invasion involving p190RhoGAP/p120ctn-dependent inactivation of RhoA.

    Molina-Ortiz I, Bartolomé RA, Hernández-Varas P, Colo GP and Teixidó J

    Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiopathology, Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas, 28040 Madrid, Spain.

    Melanoma cells express the chemokine receptor CXCR4 that confers high invasiveness upon binding to its ligand CXCL12. Melanoma cells at initial stages of the disease show reduction or loss of E-cadherin expression, but recovery of its expression is frequently found at advanced phases. We overexpressed E-cadherin in the highly invasive BRO lung metastatic cell melanoma cell line to investigate whether it could influence CXCL12-promoted cell invasion. Overexpression of E-cadherin led to defective invasion of melanoma cells across Matrigel and type I collagen in response to CXCL12. A decrease in individual cell migration directionality toward the chemokine and reduced adhesion accounted for the impaired invasion. A p190RhoGAP-dependent inhibition of RhoA activation was responsible for the impairment in chemokine-stimulated E-cadherin melanoma transfectant invasion. Furthermore, we show that p190RhoGAP and p120ctn associated predominantly on the plasma membrane of cells overexpressing E-cadherin, and that E-cadherin-bound p120ctn contributed to RhoA inactivation by favoring p190RhoGAP-RhoA association. These results suggest that melanoma cells at advanced stages of the disease could have reduced metastatic potency in response to chemotactic stimuli compared with cells lacking E-cadherin, and the results indicate that p190RhoGAP is a central molecule controlling melanoma cell invasion.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2009;284;22;15147-57

  • delta-Catenin promotes prostate cancer cell growth and progression by altering cell cycle and survival gene profiles.

    Zeng Y, Abdallah A, Lu JP, Wang T, Chen YH, Terrian DM, Kim K and Lu Q

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA. zy717@yeah.net

    Background: delta-Catenin is a unique member of beta-catenin/armadillo domain superfamily proteins and its primary expression is restricted to the brain. However, delta-catenin is upregulated in human prostatic adenocarcinomas, although the effects of delta-catenin overexpression in prostate cancer are unclear. We hypothesized that delta-catenin plays a direct role in prostate cancer progression by altering gene profiles of cell cycle regulation and cell survival.

    Results: We employed gene transfection and small interfering RNA to demonstrate that increased delta-catenin expression promoted, whereas its knockdown suppressed prostate cancer cell viability. delta-Catenin promoted prostate cancer cell colony formation in soft agar as well as tumor xenograft growth in nude mice. Deletion of either the amino-terminal or carboxyl-terminal sequences outside the armadillo domains abolished the tumor promoting effects of delta-catenin. Quantitative RT2 Profiler PCR Arrays demonstrated gene alterations involved in cell cycle and survival regulation. delta-Catenin overexpression upregulated cyclin D1 and cdc34, increased phosphorylated histone-H3, and promoted the entry of mitosis. In addition, delta-catenin overexpression resulted in increased expression of cell survival genes Bcl-2 and survivin while reducing the cell cycle inhibitor p21Cip1.

    Conclusion: Taken together, our studies suggest that at least one consequence of an increased expression of delta-catenin in human prostate cancer is the alteration of cell cycle and survival gene profiles, thereby promoting tumor progression.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA111891, R01 CA111891

    Molecular cancer 2009;8;19

  • P120-catenin isoforms 1A and 3A differently affect invasion and proliferation of lung cancer cells.

    Liu Y, Dong QZ, Zhao Y, Dong XJ, Miao Y, Dai SD, Yang ZQ, Zhang D, Wang Y, Li QC, Zhao C and Wang EH

    Department of Pathology, College of Basic Medical Sciences, China Medical University and Department of Pathology, First Affiliated Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang 110001, China.

    Different isoforms of p120-catenin (p120ctn), a member of the Armadillo gene family, are variably expressed in different tissues as a result of alternative splicing and the use of multiple translation initiation codons. When expressed in cancer cells, these isoforms may confer different properties with respect to cell adhesion and invasion. We have previously reported that the p120ctn isoforms 1 and 3 were the most highly expressed isoforms in normal lung tissues, and their expression level was reduced in lung tumor cells. To precisely define their biological roles, we transfected p120ctn isoforms 1A and 3A into the lung cancer cell lines A549 and NCI-H460. Enhanced expression of p120ctn isoform 1A not only upregulated E-cadherin and beta-catenin, but also downregulated the Rac1 activity, and as a result, inhibited the ability of cells to invade. In contrast, overexpression of p120ctn isoform 3A led to the inactivation of Cdc42 and the activation of RhoA, and had a smaller influence on invasion. However, we found that isoform 3A had a greater ability than isoform 1A in both inhibiting the cell cycle and reducing tumor cell proliferation. The present study revealed that p120ctn isoforms 1A and 3A differently regulated the adhesive, proliferative, and invasive properties of lung cancer cells through distinct mechanisms.

    Experimental cell research 2009;315;5;890-8

  • Identification of extracellular delta-catenin accumulation for prostate cancer detection.

    Lu Q, Zhang J, Allison R, Gay H, Yang WX, Bhowmick NA, Frelix G, Shappell S and Chen YH

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina 27858, USA. luq@ecu.edu

    Background: Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men, and early detection is essential to reduce mortality and increase survival. delta-Catenin is a unique beta-catenin superfamily protein primarily expressed in the brain but is upregulated in human prostatic adenocarcinomas. Despite its close correlation with the disease, it is unclear whether delta-catenin presents the potential in prostate cancer screening because it is an intracellular protein. In this study, we investigated the hypothesis of delta-catenin accumulation in the urine of prostate cancer patients and its potential pathways of excretion into extracellular milieu.

    Methods: Prostate cancer cell cultures, human tissue biopsies, and voided urines were characterized to determine extracellular delta-catenin accumulation and co-isolation with exosomes/prostasomes.

    Results: We identified delta-catenin in culture media and in the stroma of human prostate cancer tissues. In PC-3 cells in culture, delta-catenin was partially co-localized and co-isolated with raft-associated membrane protein caveolin-1 and glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored protein CD59, suggesting its potential excretion into extracellular milieu through exosome/prostasome associated pathways. Interference with endocytic pathway using wortmannin did not block prostasome excretion, but delta-catenin overexpression promoted the extracellular accumulation of caveolin-1. delta-Catenin, caveolin-1, and CD59 were all detected in cell-free human voided urine prostasomes. delta-Catenin immunoreactivity was significantly increased in the urine of prostate cancer patients (P < 0.0005).

    Conclusions: This study demonstrated, for the first time, the extracellular accumulation of delta-catenin in urine supporting its potential utility for non-invasive prostate cancer detection.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA111891, R01 CA111891, R01 CA111891-03, R01 CA111891-04

    The Prostate 2009;69;4;411-8

  • Ablation of p120-catenin enhances invasion and metastasis of human lung cancer cells.

    Liu Y, Li QC, Miao Y, Xu HT, Dai SD, Wei Q, Dong QZ, Dong XJ, Zhao Y, Zhao C and Wang EH

    Department of Pathology, College of Basic Medical Sciences, China Medical University, Heping District, Shenyang City, Liaoning Province, China.

    p120-catenin, a member of the Armadillo gene family, has emerged as both a master regulator of cadherin stability and an important modulator of small GTPase activities. Therefore, it plays novel roles in tumor malignant phenotype, such as invasion and metastasis. We have reported previously that abnormal expression of p120-catenin is associated with lymph node metastasis in lung squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) and adenocarcinomas. To investigate the role and possible mechanism of p120-catenin in lung cancer, we knocked down p120-catenin using small interfering RNA (siRNA). We found that ablation of p120-catenin reduced the levels of E-cadherin and beta-catenin proteins, as well as the mRNA of beta-catenin. Furthermore, p120-catenin depletion inactivated RhoA, but increased the activity of Cdc42 and Rac1, and promoted proliferation and the invasive ability of lung cancer cells both in vitro and in vivo. Our data reveal that p120-catenin gene knockdown enhances the metastasis of lung cancer cells, probably by either depressing cell-cell adhesion due to lower levels of E-cadherin and beta-catenin, or altering the activity of small GTPase, such as inactivation of RhoA and activation of Cdc42/Rac1.

    Cancer science 2009;100;3;441-8

  • Abnormal expression of p120-catenin, E-cadherin, and small GTPases is significantly associated with malignant phenotype of human lung cancer.

    Liu Y, Wang Y, Zhang Y, Miao Y, Zhao Y, Zhang PX, Jiang GY, Zhang JY, Han Y, Lin XY, Yang LH, Li QC, Zhao C and Wang EH

    Department of Pathology, College of Basic Medical Sciences, China Medical University, Shenyang 110001, China.

    Studies on a variety of cell lines have shown that p120-catenin can directly regulate the stability of E-cadherin complexes and control the activity of small GTPases to influence cell adhesion. Despite this data, clinical studies of human solid tumors have not been reported to investigate these protein interactions. To explore the correlation between p120-catenin, E-cadherin, and small GTPases in human lung cancer, we examined the expression patterns of p120-catenin, E-cadherin, RhoA, Cdc42, and Rac1, and their prognostic significance in 138 patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). While normal bronchial epithelium showed strong membrane expression of p120-catenin and E-cadherin, lung cancer tissues had reduced membrane expression and ectopic cytoplasmic expression of p120-catenin and E-cadherin. Expression of RhoA, Cdc42, and Rac1 was also found to be higher in tumor tissue than in normal lung tissue. A correlation between abnormal p120-catenin, E-cadherin expression, and overexpression of specific small GTPases was also associated with poor differentiation, high TNM stage, and lymph node metastasis in NSCLC patients. We also used an in vitro model to evaluate their expression, and to determine whether protein expression correlated with the invasive capacity of lung cancer cell lines. Consistent with our in vivo data, abnormal expression of p120-catenin and E-cadherin with overexpression of specific small GTPases were significantly associated with the high metastatic capacity of BE1 cells. Based on our results, we conclude that abnormal p120-catenin expression correlates with abnormal E-cadherin expression and specific small GTPase overexpression, which contribute to the malignancy-related to NSCLC.

    Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands) 2009;63;3;375-82

  • p120 catenin recruits cadherins to gamma-secretase and inhibits production of Abeta peptide.

    Kouchi Z, Barthet G, Serban G, Georgakopoulos A, Shioi J and Robakis NK

    Department of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York 10029, USA.

    The gamma-secretase complex cleaves many transmembrane proteins, including amyloid precursor protein, EphB and ErbB tyrosine kinase receptors, Notch1 receptors, and adhesion factors. Presenilin 1, the catalytic subunit of gamma-secretase, associates with the cadherin/catenin cell-cell adhesion/communication system and promotes cadherin processing (Georgakopoulos, A., et al. (1999) Mol. Cell 4, 893-902; Marambaud, P., et al. (2002) EMBO J. 21, 1948-1956), but the mechanism by which gamma-secretase and cadherins associate is unclear. Here we report that p120 catenin (p120ctn), a component of the cadherin-catenin complex, recruits gamma-secretase to cadherins, thus stimulating their processing while inhibiting production of Abeta peptide and the amyloid precursor protein intracellular domain. This function of p120ctn depends on both p120ctn-cadherin and p120ctn-presenilin 1 binding, indicating that p120ctn is the central factor that bridges gamma-secretase and cadherin-catenin complexes. Our data show that p120ctn is a unique positive regulator of the gamma-secretase processing of cadherins and a negative regulator of the amyloid precursor protein processing. Furthermore, our data suggest that specific members of the gamma-secretase complex may be used to recruit different substrates and that distinct PS1 sequences are required for processing of APP and cadherins.

    Funded by: NIA NIH HHS: AG-08200, AG-17926, R37 AG017926; NINDS NIH HHS: NS047229, R01 NS047229

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2009;284;4;1954-61

  • PDGF receptor activation induces p120-catenin phosphorylation at serine 879 via a PKCalpha-dependent pathway.

    Brown MV, Burnett PE, Denning MF and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232, USA.

    p120-catenin (p120) is required for cadherin stability and is thought to have a central role in modulating cell-cell adhesion. Several lines of evidence suggest that S/T phosphorylation may regulate p120 activity, but the upstream kinases involved have not been established, nor has a discreet measurable function been assigned to an individual site. To approach these issues, we have generated p120 phospho-specific monoclonal antibodies to several individual phosphorylation sites and are using them to pinpoint upstream kinases and signaling pathways that control p120 activity. Protein Kinase C (PKC) has been implicated as a signaling intermediate in several cadherin-associated cellular activities. Signaling events that activate PKC induce rapid phosphorylation at p120 Serine 879 (S879), suggesting that p120 activity is regulated, in part, by one or more PKC isoforms. Here, we find that physiologic activation of a G-protein coupled receptor (i.e., endothelin receptor), as well as several Receptor Tyrosine Kinases, induce rapid and robust p120 phosphorylation at S879, suggesting that these pathways crosstalk to cadherin complexes via p120. Using Va2 cells and PDGF stimulation, we show for the first time that PDGFR-mediated phosphorylation at this site is dependent on PKCalpha, a conventional PKC isoform implicated previously in disruption of adherens junctions.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA055724, CA111947, R01 CA055724, R01 CA055724-18, R01 CA111947, R01 CA111947-05, T32 CA009592; NIAMS NIH HHS: P30AR41943

    Experimental cell research 2009;315;1;39-49

  • N-cadherin levels in endothelial cells are regulated by monolayer maturity and p120 availability.

    Ferreri DM, Minnear FL, Yin T, Kowalczyk AP and Vincent PA

    Center for Cardiovascular Sciences, Albany Medical College, Albany, New York 12208, USA.

    Endothelial cells (ECs) express VE-cadherin and N-cadherin, and recent data suggest that VE-cadherin levels are dependent on N-cadherin expression. While investigating changes in N-cadherin levels during endothelial monolayer maturation, the authors found that VE-cadherin levels are maintained in ECs despite a decrease in N-cadherin, suggesting that VE-cadherin levels may not depend on N-cadherin. Knockdown of N-cadherin did not affect VE-cadherin levels in ECs with low endogenous N-cadherin expression. Surprisingly, however, knockdown of N-cadherin in ECs with high endogenous N-cadherin expression increased VE-cadherin levels, suggesting an inverse relationship between the two. This was further supported by a decrease in VE-cadherin following overexpression of N-cadherin. Experiments in which p120, a catenin that binds N- and VE-cadherin, was knocked down or overexpressed indicate that these two cadherins compete for p120. These data demonstrate that VE-cadherin levels are not directly related to N-cadherin levels but may be inversely related due to competition for p120.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-68079, HL-77870, R01 HL068079, R01 HL077870, R01 HL077870-03; NIAMS NIH HHS: AR-050501, R01 AR050501

    Cell communication & adhesion 2008;15;4;333-49

  • Reduced expression of E-cadherin/catenin complex in hepatocellular carcinomas.

    Zhai B, Yan HX, Liu SQ, Chen L, Wu MC and Wang HY

    Department of Ultrasonic Intervention, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai 200438, China.

    Aim: To examine the immunoreactivity of E-cadherin and four subtypes of catenin family in human hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and to investigate the correlation between expression of E-cadherin/catenin complex and clinicopathologic parameters of HCC patients.

    Methods: An immunohistochemical study for E-cadherin and catenins was performed on 97 formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded specimens of HCC.

    Results: Reduced expression of E-cadherin, alpha-, beta-, gamma-catenin and p120 was observed in 69%, 76%, 63%, 71% and 73%, respectively. Both expressions of E-cadherin and catenin components were significantly correlated with tumor grade (P = 0.000). It showed significant difference between expression of catenin members and tumor stage (P = 0.003, P = 0.017, P = 0.007 and P = 0.000, respectively). The reduced expression of E-cadherin in HCCs was significantly correlated with intrahepatic metastasis (IM) and capsular invasion (P = 0.008, P = 0.03, respectively). A close correlation was also observed between the expression of catenins and the tumor size (P = 0.002, P = 0.034, P = 0.016 and P = 0.000, respectively). In addition, the expression of each catenin was found correlated with IM (P = 0.012, P = 0.049, P = 0.026 and P = 0.014, respectively). No statistically significant difference was observed between the expression level of E-cadherin/catenin complex and lymph node permission, vascular invasion and satellite nodules. Interestingly, only expression of p120 showed correlation with AFP value (P = 0.035). The expression of E-cadherin was consistent with alpha-, beta-, gamma-catenin and p120 expression (P = 0.000). Finally, the abnormal expression of E-cadherin/catenin complex was significantly associated with patients' survival (P = 0.0253, P = 0.0052, P = 0.003, P = 0.0105 and P = 0.0016, respectively). Nevertheless, no component of E-cadherin/catenin complex was the independent prognostic factor of HCC patients.

    Conclusion: Down-regulated expressions of E-cadherin, catenins and p120 occur frequently in HCCs and contribute to the progression and development of tumor. It may be more exact and valuable to detect the co-expression of E-cadherin/catenin complex than to explore one of them in predicting tumor invasion, metastasis and patient's survival.

    World journal of gastroenterology 2008;14;37;5665-73

  • p120-Catenin regulates leukocyte transmigration through an effect on VE-cadherin phosphorylation.

    Alcaide P, Newton G, Auerbach S, Sehrawat S, Mayadas TN, Golan DE, Yacono P, Vincent P, Kowalczyk A and Luscinskas FW

    Center for Excellence in Vascular Biology, Department of Pathology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

    Vascular endothelial-cadherin (VE-cad) is localized to adherens junctions at endothelial cell borders and forms a complex with alpha-, beta-, gamma-, and p120-catenins (p120). We previously showed that the VE-cad complex disassociates to form short-lived "gaps" during leukocyte transendothelial migration (TEM); however, whether these gaps are required for leukocyte TEM is not clear. Recently p120 has been shown to control VE-cad surface expression through endocytosis. We hypothesized that p120 regulates VE-cad surface expression, which would in turn have functional consequences for leukocyte transmigration. Here we show that endothelial cells transduced with an adenovirus expressing p120GFP fusion protein significantly increase VE-cad expression. Moreover, endothelial junctions with high p120GFP expression largely prevent VE-cad gap formation and neutrophil leukocyte TEM; if TEM occurs, the length of time required is prolonged. We find no evidence that VE-cad endocytosis plays a role in VE-cad gap formation and instead show that this process is regulated by changes in VE-cad phosphorylation. In fact, a nonphosphorylatable VE-cad mutant prevented TEM. In summary, our studies provide compelling evidence that VE-cad gap formation is required for leukocyte transmigration and identify p120 as a critical intracellular mediator of this process through its regulation of VE-cad expression at junctions.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL077870, HL32854, HL36028, P01 HL036028, P01 HL036028-230005, P01 HL036028-239002, R01 HL032854, R01 HL053993, R01 HL053993-13, R01 HL077870, R37 HL032854; NIAMS NIH HHS: R01 AR050501, R01AR050501

    Blood 2008;112;7;2770-9

  • p120 and Kaiso regulate Helicobacter pylori-induced expression of matrix metalloproteinase-7.

    Ogden SR, Wroblewski LE, Weydig C, Romero-Gallo J, O'Brien DP, Israel DA, Krishna US, Fingleton B, Reynolds AB, Wessler S and Peek RM

    Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232-2279, USA.

    Helicobacter pylori is the strongest known risk factor for gastric adenocarcinoma, yet only a fraction of infected persons develop cancer. One H. pylori constituent that augments disease risk is the cytotoxin-associated gene (cag) pathogenicity island, which encodes a secretion system that translocates bacterial effector molecules into host cells. Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-7, a member of a family of enzymes with tumor-initiating properties, is overexpressed in premalignant and malignant gastric lesions, and H. pylori cag(+) strains selectively increase MMP-7 protein levels in gastric epithelial cells in vitro and in vivo. We now report that H. pylori-mediated mmp-7 induction is transcriptionally regulated via aberrant activation of p120-catenin (p120), a component of adherens junctions. H. pylori increases mmp-7 mRNA levels in a cag- and p120-dependent manner and induces translocation of p120 to the nucleus in vitro and in a novel ex vivo gastric gland culture system. Nuclear translocation of p120 in response to H. pylori relieves Kaiso-mediated transcriptional repression of mmp-7, which is implicated in tumorigenesis. These results indicate that selective and coordinated induction of mmp-7 expression by H. pylori cag(+) isolates may explain in part the augmentation in gastric cancer risk associated with these strains.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: T32 CA009592; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK-058404, DK-58587, DK-73902, DK-77955, K01 DK077955, P30 DK058404, R01 DK058587, R01 DK073902

    Molecular biology of the cell 2008;19;10;4110-21

  • p120-catenin is a key component of the cadherin-gamma-secretase supercomplex.

    Kiss A, Troyanovsky RB and Troyanovsky SM

    Division of Dermatology, Washington University Medical School, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA.

    In this work, we show several previously unknown features of p120-catenin in a cadherin-catenin complex that are critical for our understanding of cadherin-based adhesion and signaling. We show that in human epithelial A-431 cells, nearly all p120 molecules engage in high-affinity interaction with E-cadherin-catenin complexes located at the cellular surface. p120 is positioned in proximity to alpha-catenin in the complex with cadherin. These findings suggest a functional cooperation between p120 and alpha-catenin in cadherin-based adhesion. A low level of cadherin-free p120 molecules, in contrast, could facilitate p120-dependent signaling. Finally, we present compelling evidence that p120 is a key linker cementing the E-cadherin-catenin complex with the transmembrane protease gamma-secretase. The cell-cell contact location of this supercomplex makes it an important candidate for conducting different signals that rely on gamma-secretase proteolytic activity.

    Funded by: NIAMS NIH HHS: AR44016-04, R01 AR044016, R56 AR044016

    Molecular biology of the cell 2008;19;10;4042-50

  • Nuclear targeting of beta-catenin and p120ctn during thrombin-induced endothelial barrier dysfunction.

    Beckers CM, García-Vallejo JJ, van Hinsbergh VW and van Nieuw Amerongen GP

    Department for Physiology, VU University Medical Center, Institute for Cardiovascular Research, van der Boechorststraat 7, 1081 BT Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

    Aims: Cytosolic and nuclear localization of beta-catenin was observed in leaky vessels and in tumours. Several lines of evidence indicate that nuclear beta-catenin facilitates angiogenesis. We hypothesized that nuclear beta-catenin liberated from endothelial junctional complexes marks the transition from hyperpermeability to angiogenesis. The aim of this study was, therefore, to investigate the fate of beta-catenin and the related catenin p120catenin (p120ctn), during disruption of the endothelial barrier function in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (ECs).

    The hyperpermeability-inducer thrombin caused a Rho kinase-dependent redistribution of beta-catenin from the membrane to the cytosol as evidenced by the western blot analysis of membrane and cytosol fractions and by immunohistochemistry. Glycogen synthase kinase 3beta, which phosphorylates cytosolic beta-catenin and thereby facilitates its proteasomal degradation, was inhibited by thrombin. The analysis of nuclear extracts demonstrated a thrombin-induced nuclear accumulation of beta-catenin as well as p120ctn. Thrombin stimulation activated beta-catenin-mediated transcriptional activity as evidenced by reporter assays. Finally, real-time-PCR revealed increased mRNA levels of several beta-catenin target genes.

    Conclusion: Thrombin induced a cytosolic stabilization of membrane-liberated beta-catenin, which, together with p120ctn, subsequently translocated to the nucleus where it induces several beta-catenin target genes. This supports the suggestion that membrane-liberated beta-catenin and p120ctn contribute to angiogenic responses of ECs following episodes of vascular leakage.

    Cardiovascular research 2008;79;4;679-88

  • p120 catenin reduction and cytoplasmic relocalization leads to dysregulation of E-cadherin in solid pseudopapillary tumors of the pancreas.

    Chetty R, Jain D and Serra S

    Departments of Pathology, University Health Network and University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada. runjan.chetty@uhn.on.ca

    Solid pseudopapillary tumors (SPTs) of the pancreas have characteristic morphologic features and show consistent beta-catenin abnormalities and loss of E-cadherin protein. The loss of cell-to-cell adhesion is thought to contribute to frequent cystic degeneration and pseudopapillae formation. p120 regulates E-cadherin and is responsible for its degradation.A tissue microarray of 20 cases and whole sections from another 9 cases of SPT were stained with p120, beta-catenin, and E-cadherin. All 29 cases showed cytoplasmic and nuclear staining for beta-catenin, loss of E-cadherin, and decrease or loss of p120 membrane localization but cytoplasmic staining instead. Loss of membrane p120 staining with relocalization to the cytoplasm was seen in cystic and solid areas of the tumors. This study indicates that p120 expression in SPTs is abnormal and loss of E-cadherin is probably consequent on p120 loss or decrease. Aberrations and other alterations of the E-cadherin gene are unlikely to be responsible for the loss of E-cadherin in SPTs.

    American journal of clinical pathology 2008;130;1;71-6

  • A p120 catenin isoform switch affects Rho activity, induces tumor cell invasion, and predicts metastatic disease.

    Yanagisawa M, Huveldt D, Kreinest P, Lohse CM, Cheville JC, Parker AS, Copland JA and Anastasiadis PZ

    Department of Cancer Biology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA.

    p120 catenin is a cadherin-associated protein that regulates Rho GTPases and promotes the invasiveness of E-cadherin-deficient cancer cells. Multiple p120 isoforms are expressed in cells via alternative splicing, and all of them are essential for HGF signaling to Rac1. However, only full-length p120 (isoform 1) promotes invasiveness. This selective ability of p120 isoform 1 is mediated by reduced RhoA activity, both under basal conditions and following HGF treatment. All p120 isoforms can bind RhoA in vitro, via a central RhoA binding site. However, only the cooperative binding of RhoA to the central p120 domain and to the alternatively spliced p120 N terminus stabilizes RhoA binding and inhibits RhoA activity. Consistent with this, increased expression of p120 isoform 1, when compared with other p120 isoforms, is predictive of renal tumor micrometastasis and systemic progression, following nephrectomy. Furthermore, ectopic expression of the RhoA-binding, N-terminal domain of p120 is sufficient to block the ability of p120 isoform 1 to inhibit RhoA and to promote invasiveness. The data indicate that the increased expression of p120 isoform 1 during tumor progression contributes to the invasive phenotype of cadherin-deficient carcinomas and that the N-terminal domain of p120 is a valid therapeutic target.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA 100467, R01 CA 104505, R01 CA100467, R01 CA104505

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2008;283;26;18344-54

  • Reduced expression of P120 catenin in cholangiocarcinoma correlated with tumor clinicopathologic parameters.

    Zhai B, Yan HX, Liu SQ, Chen L, Wu MC and Wang HY

    Department of Ultrasonic Intervention, Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Hospital, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai 200438, China.

    Aim: To investigate the relationship between the expression of P120 and the clinicopathologic parameters in intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC).

    Methods: An immunohistochemical study of E-cadherin and P120 catenin was performed on 42 specimens of ICC with a Dako Envision kit.

    Results: The expression of E-cadherin and P120 was reduced in 27 cases (64.3%) and 31 cases (73.8%), respectively. Both E-cadherin and P120 expressions were significantly correlated with the tumor histological grade (chi2 = 9.333, P = 009 and chi2 = 11.71, P = 0.003), TNM stage (chi2= 8.627, P = 0.035 and chi2 = 13.123, P = 0.004), intrahepatic metastasis (chi2= 7.292, P = 0.007 and chi2 = 4.657, P = 0.041, respectively) and patients' survival (chi2= 6.351, P = 0.002 and chi2 = 4.023, P = 0.000, respectively). In addition, the expression of P120 was in concordance with that of E-cadherin (chi2 = 13.797, P = 0.000), indicating that the expression of P120 may be dependent on that of E-cadherin. Finally, only P120 expression was found to be an independent prognostic factor in Cox regression model (r = 0.088, P = 0.049).

    Conclusion: Down-regulated expression of E-cadherin and P120 occurs frequently in ICC and contributes to the progression and development of tumor. Both of them may be valuable biologic markers for predicting tumor invasion, metastasis and patients' survival, but only P120 is an independent prognostic factor for ICC.

    World journal of gastroenterology 2008;14;23;3739-44

  • P120-catenin is a novel desmoglein 3 interacting partner: identification of the p120-catenin association site of desmoglein 3.

    Kanno M, Isa Y, Aoyama Y, Yamamoto Y, Nagai M, Ozawa M and Kitajima Y

    Department of Dermatology, Gifu University School of Medicine, Gifu City 501-1194, Japan.

    P120-catenin (p120ctn) is an armadillo-repeat protein that directly binds to the intracytoplasmic domains of classical cadherins. p120ctn binding promotes the stabilization of cadherin complexes on the plasma membrane and thus positively regulates the adhesive activity of cadherins. Using co-immunoprecipitation, we show here that p120ctn associates to desmogleins (Dsg) 1 and 3. To determine which region is involved in the association between Dsg3 and p120ctn, we constructed mutant Dsg3 proteins, in which various cytoplasmic subdomains were removed. The tailless Dsg3 constructs Delta IA:AA1-641Dsg3 and Delta 641-714Dsg3, which do not contain the intracellular anchor (IA) region, did not coprecipitate with p120cn, nor did they colocalize at the plasma membrane. Immunocytochemical analysis revealed that p120ctn does not localize to desmosomes, but colocalizes with Dsg3 at the cell surface. A biotinylation assay for Dsg3 showed that biotinylated Delta 641-714Dsg3 was turned over more rapidly than wild-type Dsg3. These results indicate that the membrane proximal region (corresponding to residues 641-714) in the IA region of Dsg3 is necessary for complex formation with p120ctn, and to maintain free Dsg3 at the cell surface before it is integrated into desmosomes. In summary, we show that p120ctn is a novel interactor of the Dsg proteins, and may play a role in desmosome remodeling.

    Experimental cell research 2008;314;8;1683-92

  • Toward a confocal subcellular atlas of the human proteome.

    Barbe L, Lundberg E, Oksvold P, Stenius A, Lewin E, Björling E, Asplund A, Pontén F, Brismar H, Uhlén M and Andersson-Svahn H

    Department of Biotechnology, AlbaNova University Center, Royal Institute of Technology, SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden.

    Information on protein localization on the subcellular level is important to map and characterize the proteome and to better understand cellular functions of proteins. Here we report on a pilot study of 466 proteins in three human cell lines aimed to allow large scale confocal microscopy analysis using protein-specific antibodies. Approximately 3000 high resolution images were generated, and more than 80% of the analyzed proteins could be classified in one or multiple subcellular compartment(s). The localizations of the proteins showed, in many cases, good agreement with the Gene Ontology localization prediction model. This is the first large scale antibody-based study to localize proteins into subcellular compartments using antibodies and confocal microscopy. The results suggest that this approach might be a valuable tool in conjunction with predictive models for protein localization.

    Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP 2008;7;3;499-508

  • Compartmentalization in membrane rafts defines a pool of N-cadherin associated with catenins and not engaged in cell-cell junctions in melanoma cells.

    Rossier-Pansier L, Baruthio F, Rüegg C and Mariotti A

    Division of Experimental Oncology, Centre Pluridisciplinaire d'Oncologie, Lausanne Cancer Center and Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research, CH-1066 Epalinges s/Lausanne, Switzerland.

    Melanoma progression is associated with changes in adhesion receptor expression, in particular upregulation of N-cadherin which promotes melanoma cell survival and invasion. Plasma membrane lipid rafts contribute to the compartmentalization of signaling complexes thereby regulating their function, but how they may affect the properties of adhesion molecules remains elusive. In this study, we addressed the question whether lipid rafts in melanoma cells may contribute to the compartmentalization of N-cadherin. We show that a fraction of N-cadherin in a complex with catenins is associated with cholesterol/sphingolipid-rich membrane microdomains in aggressive melanoma cells in vitro and experimental melanomas in vivo. Partitioning of N-cadherin in membrane rafts is not modulated by growth factors and signaling pathways relevant to melanoma progression, is not necessary for cell-cell junctions' establishment or maintenance, and is not affected by cell-cell junctions' and actin cytoskeleton disruption. These results reveal that two independent pools of N-cadherin exist on melanoma cell surface: one pool is independent of lipid rafts and is engaged in cell-cell junctions, while a second pool is localized in membrane rafts and does not participate in cell-cell adhesions. Targeting to membrane rafts may represent a previously unrecognized mechanism regulating N-cadherin function in melanoma cells.

    Journal of cellular biochemistry 2008;103;3;957-71

  • The regulatory or phosphorylation domain of p120 catenin controls E-cadherin dynamics at the plasma membrane.

    Fukumoto Y, Shintani Y, Reynolds AB, Johnson KR and Wheelock MJ

    Eppley Institute for Research in Cancer and Allied Diseases, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, Nebraska 68198-7696, USA.

    In contrast to growth factor-stimulated tyrosine phosphorylation of p120, its relatively constitutive serine/threonine phosphorylation is not well understood. Here we examined the role of serine/threonine phosphorylation of p120 in cadherin function. Expression of cadherins in cadherin-null cells converted them to an epithelial phenotype, induced p120 phosphorylation and localized it to sites of cell contact. Detergent solubility and immunofluorescence confirmed that phosphorylated p120 was at the plasma membrane. E-cadherin constructs incapable of traveling to the plasma membrane did not induce serine/threonine phosphorylation of p120, nor did cadherins constructs incapable of binding p120. However, an E-cadherin cytoplasmic domain construct artificially targeted to the plasma membrane did induce serine/threonine phosphorylation of p120, suggesting phosphorylation occurs independently of signals from cadherin dimerization and trafficking through the ER/Golgi. Solubility assays following calcium switch showed that p120 isoform 3A was more effective at stabilizing E-cadherin at the plasma membrane relative to isoform 4A. Since the major phosphorylation domain of p120 is included in isoform 3A but not 4A, we tested p120 mutated in the known phosphorylation sites in this domain and found that it was even less effective at stabilizing E-cadherin. These data suggest that serine/threonine phosphorylation of p120 influences the dynamics of E-cadherin in junctions.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: P30 CA036727, P30 CA036727-23, P30 CA36727; NIDCR NIH HHS: R01 DE012308, R01 DE012308-11, R01-DE12308; NIGMS NIH HHS: R01 GM051188, R01 GM051188-14, R01-GM51188

    Experimental cell research 2008;314;1;52-67

  • p120-catenin is required for the collective invasion of squamous cell carcinoma cells via a phosphorylation-independent mechanism.

    Macpherson IR, Hooper S, Serrels A, McGarry L, Ozanne BW, Harrington K, Frame MC, Sahai E and Brunton VG

    The Beatson Institute for Cancer Research, Glasgow, UK.

    Loss of E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell junctions has been correlated with cancer cell invasion and poor patient survival. p120-catenin has emerged as a key player in promoting E-cadherin stability and adherens junction integrity and has been proposed as a potential invasion suppressor by preventing release of cells from the constraints imposed by cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion. However, it has been proposed that tyrosine phosphorylation of p120 may contribute to cadherin-dependent junction disassembly during invasion. Here, we use small interfering RNA (siRNA) in A431 cells to show that knockdown of p120 promotes two-dimensional migration of cells. In contrast, p120 knockdown impairs epidermal growth factor-induced A431 invasion into three-dimensional matrix gels or in organotypic culture, whereas re-expression of siRNA-resistant p120, or a p120 isoform that cannot be phosphorylated on tyrosine, restores the collective mode of invasion employed by A431 cells in vitro. Thus, p120 promotes A431 cell invasion in a phosphorylation-independent manner. We show that the collective invasion of A431 cells depends on the presence of cadherin-mediated (P- and E-cadherin) cell-cell contacts, which are lost in cells where p120 expression is knocked down. Furthermore, membranous p120 is maintained in invasive squamous cell carcinomas in tumours suggesting that p120 may be important for the collective invasion of tumours cells in vivo.

    Oncogene 2007;26;36;5214-28

  • Expression of E-cadherin, beta-catenin and p120ctn in the pulmonary sclerosing hemangioma.

    Dai SD, Zhang XW, Qi FJ, Xu HT and Wang EH

    Department of Pathology, College of Basic Medical Sciences, China Medical University, Shenyang 110001, China.

    Background: The major two types of cells in pulmonary sclerosing hemangiomas (PSH) may be not equally maturity, but this viewpoint needs more evidences.

    Aim: To determine E-cadherin, beta-catenin and p120(ctn) expression phenotype in cuboidal and polygonal cells, which are the two major cell types in pulmonary sclerosing hemangiomas.

    Methods: Specimens were obtained from 25 patients with PSH and 8 patients with pulmonary inflammatory pseudotumors. The expression levels of E-cadherin, beta-catenin and p120(ctn) were detected using a streptavidin peroxidase (SP) immunohistochemical method.

    Results: E-cadherin, beta-catenin and p120(ctn) were expressed strongly on the cuboidal cell membranes, while beta-catenin was also expressed the cuboid cytoplams in 25 PSH patients. However, in the polygonal cell membranes, the expression levels of these molecules were decreased, and mainly cytoplamic. Specifically, E-cadherin, beta-catenin and p120(ctn) were expressed in both the cytoplasm and on the cell membranes in the intracavitary lining cells of the hemorrhagic regions. The expression phenotype in proliferating type II pneumocytes in the eight pulmonary inflammatory pseudotumors was similar to that in the cuboidal cells in PSH patients.

    Conclusion: The cuboidal cells, resembling inflammatory proliferative type II pneumocytes, display several characteristics of epithelial cells, including normal expression of E-cadherin and catenin. Comparatively, polygonal cells are not as mature as cuboidal cells and lack of expression of E-cadherin and catenin.

    Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands) 2007;57;1;54-9

  • p120 catenin regulates lamellipodial dynamics and cell adhesion in cooperation with cortactin.

    Boguslavsky S, Grosheva I, Landau E, Shtutman M, Cohen M, Arnold K, Feinstein E, Geiger B and Bershadsky A

    *Department of Molecular Cell Biology, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel.

    The armadillo-family protein, p120 catenin (p120), binds to the juxtamembrane domain of classical cadherins and increases cell-cell junction stability. Overexpression of p120 modulates the activity of Rho family GTPases and augments cell migratory ability. Here we show that down-regulation of p120 in epithelial MCF-7 cells by siRNA leads to a striking decrease in lamellipodial persistence and focal adhesion formation. Similar alterations in lamellipodial activity were observed in MCF-7 cells treated with siRNA to cortactin, an activator of Arp2/3-dependent actin polymerization. We found that, in many cell types, p120 is colocalized with cortactin-containing actin structures not only at cell-cell junctions, but also at extrajunctional sites including membrane ruffles and actin-rich halos around endocytotic vesicles. p120 depletion led to dramatic loss of cortactin and its partner, Arp3, from the cell leading edges. Cortactin and p120 are shown to directly interact with each other via the cortactin N-terminal region. We propose that the mechanism underlying p120 functions at the leading edge involves its cooperation with cortactin.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2007;104;26;10882-7

  • The transcriptional repressor Glis2 is a novel binding partner for p120 catenin.

    Hosking CR, Ulloa F, Hogan C, Ferber EC, Figueroa A, Gevaert K, Birchmeier W, Briscoe J and Fujita Y

    Medical Research Council Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology and Cell Biology Unit, Department of Biology, University College London, London WC1E 6BT, UK.

    In epithelial cells, p120 catenin (p120) localizes at cell-cell contacts and regulates adhesive function of the cadherin complex. In addition, p120 has been reported to localize in the nucleus, although the nuclear function of p120 is not fully understood. Here, we report the identification of Gli-similar 2 (Glis2) as a novel binding protein for p120. Glis2 is a Krüppel-like transcriptional repressor with homology to the Gli family, but its physiological function has not been well characterized. In this study, we show that coexpression of Glis2 and Src induces nuclear translocation of p120. Furthermore, p120 induces the C-terminal cleavage of Glis2, and this cleavage is further enhanced by Src. The cleaved form of Glis2 loses one of its five zinc finger domains, but it is still able to bind DNA. Functional studies in chick neural tube indicate that full-length Glis2 can affect neuronal differentiation, whereas the cleaved form requires coexpression of p120 to have a similar effect. These data indicate that p120 has additional novel functions in the nucleus together with Glis2.

    Funded by: Medical Research Council: MC_U117560541, MC_U122669938

    Molecular biology of the cell 2007;18;5;1918-27

  • Purification and identification of G protein-coupled receptor protein complexes under native conditions.

    Daulat AM, Maurice P, Froment C, Guillaume JL, Broussard C, Monsarrat B, Delagrange P and Jockers R

    Department of Cell Biology, Institut Cochin, INSERM U567, CNRS UMR 8104, Université Paris Descartes, France.

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) constitute the largest family of membrane receptors and are of major therapeutic importance. The identification of GPCR-associated proteins is an important step toward a better understanding of these receptors. However, current methods are not satisfying as only isolated receptor domains (intracellular loops or carboxyl-terminal tails) can be used as "bait." We report here a method based on tandem affinity purification coupled to mass spectrometry that overcomes these limitations as the entire receptor is used to identify protein complexes formed in living mammalian cells. The human MT(1) and MT(2) melatonin receptors were chosen as model GPCRs. Both receptors were tagged with the tandem affinity purification tag at their carboxyl-terminal tails and expressed in human embryonic kidney 293 cells. Receptor solubilization and purification conditions were optimized. The method was validated by the co-purification of G(i) proteins, which are well known GPCR interaction partners but which are difficult to identify with current protein-protein interaction assays. Several new and functionally relevant MT(1)- and MT(2)-associated proteins were identified; some of them were common to both receptors, and others were specific for each subtype. Taken together, our protocol allowed for the first time the purification of GPCR-associated proteins under native conditions in quantities suitable for mass spectrometry analysis.

    Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP 2007;6;5;835-44

  • The recruitment of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase to the E-cadherin-catenin complex at the plasma membrane is required for calcium-induced phospholipase C-gamma1 activation and human keratinocyte differentiation.

    Xie Z and Bikle DD

    Endocrine Unit, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Northern California Institute for Research and Education and University of California, San Francisco, California 94121, USA. Zhongjian.Xie@ucsf.edu

    Calcium induces epidermal keratinocyte differentiation, but the mechanism is not completely understood. We have previously demonstrated that calcium-induced human keratinocyte differentiation requires an intracellular calcium rise caused by phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)-dependent activation of phospholipase C-gamma1. In this study we sought to identify the upstream signaling pathway necessary for calcium activation of PI3K and its subsequent activation of phospholipase C-gamma1. We found that calcium induces the recruitment of PI3K to the E-cadherin-catenin complex at the plasma membrane of human keratinocytes. Knocking-down E-cadherin, beta-catenin, or p120-catenin expression blocked calcium activation of PI3K and phospholipase C-gamma1 and calcium-induced keratinocyte differentiation. However, knocking-down gamma-catenin expression had no effect. Calcium-induced PI3K recruitment to E-cadherin stabilized by p120-catenin at the plasma membrane requires beta-catenin but not gamma-catenin. These data indicate that the recruitment of PI3K to the E-cadherin/beta-catenin/p120-catenin complex via beta-catenin at the plasma membrane is required for calcium-induced phospholipase C-gamma1 activation and, ultimately, keratinocyte differentiation.

    Funded by: NIAMS NIH HHS: P01AR39448, R01 AR038386

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2007;282;12;8695-703

  • Beyond regulation of cell adhesion: local control of RhoA at the cleavage furrow by the p0071 catenin.

    Keil R, Wolf A, Hüttelmaier S and Hatzfeld M

    Institute for Pathophysiology, Division of Pathobiochemistry, Martin Luther University-Halle, Halle, Germany.

    P120(ctn) is the prototype of a subfamily of armadillo proteins that also comprises p0071, delta-catenin, ARVCF and the more distantly related plakophilins 1-3. These proteins have well established roles in regulating adherens junction and desmosome formation which critically depends on their capacity to cluster cadherins. Besides this function in cell adhesion that is mediated by a membrane associated pool, these proteins also show cytoplasmic and nuclear localization. While their nuclear function is still enigmatic, major progress in understanding their cytoplasmic role has been made. In the cytoplasm, the p120 catenins appear responsible for the spatio-temporal control of small Rho-GTPases in various cellular contexts. Whereas p120(ctn) has a major function in regulating cell adhesion and motility through controlling Rho-GTPases, a recent report shows that the closely related protein p0071 associates and regulates RhoA at the cleavage furrow during cytokinesis. Overexpression and knockdown of p0071 induced a cytokinesis defect that was mediated by up- or downregulation of RhoA activity at the contractile ring. There, p0071 interacted directly with RhoA itself and with the Rho-GEF Ect2. Full activation of RhoA required Ect2 as well as p0071 indicating that these two proteins act in conjunction to regulate RhoA during cytokinesis. Here we discuss the function of p120 catenins as versatile scaffolds that confer specificity to the complex regulation of Rho-GTPases. By controlling numerous stimulating guanine exchange factors (GEFs) and inhibiting GTPase activating proteins (GAPs) via the formation of multiprotein complexes at the right time and place, they direct the spatio-temporal control of Rho-signalling.

    Cell cycle (Georgetown, Tex.) 2007;6;2;122-7

  • Expression of p120-catenin isoforms correlates with genomic and transcriptional phenotype of breast cancer cell lines.

    Paredes J, Correia AL, Ribeiro AS and Schmitt F

    Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS), School of Health Sciences, University of Minho, Braga, Portugal. jparedes@ecsaude.uminho.pt

    Background: P120-catenin is a member of the Armadillo protein family, which is involved in intercellular adhesion and cell signalling. It directly interacts with the classical cadherins juxtamembrane domain and contributes for both junction formation and its disassembly. Accumulating evidences indicate that p120-catenin is important in tumour formation and progression, although the role of their multiple spliced isoforms in the regulation of cadherin-mediated adhesion of malignant cells is still not well understood. We investigated the expression of p120-catenin isoforms in a collection of breast cancer cell lines with distinct molecular profiles and expressing different cadherins.

    Methods: We assessed the expression by RT-PCR and Western-blotting analysis.

    Results: We observed that the expression of p120-catenin isoforms was associated with the genomic and transcriptional phenotype of breast cancer cells. Besides, the recruitment of p120-catenin isoforms was not apparently related with the particular expression of E-, P- or N-cadherin.

    Conclusion: We demonstrate that mammary tumour cells exhibit a characteristic p120-catenin isoform expression profile, depending from their specific genomic and transcriptional properties. These particular expression patterns, combined with other regulatory proteins and in a specific cellular context, may explain how p120-catenin can either contribute to strength intercellular adhesions or instead to promote cell motility.

    Cellular oncology : the official journal of the International Society for Cellular Oncology 2007;29;6;467-76

  • Helicobacter pylori alters the distribution of ZO-1 and p120ctn in primary human gastric epithelial cells.

    Krueger S, Hundertmark T, Kuester D, Kalinski T, Peitz U and Roessner A

    Department of Pathology, Otto-von-Guericke University, Leipziger Str. 44, D-39120 Magdeburg, Germany. Sabine.Krueger@medizin.uni-magdeburg.de

    Helicobacter pylori infection is related to the development of diverse gastric pathologies, possibly by affecting epithelial junctional complexes that define cell polarity and play an essential role in transepithelial transport and cell-cell adhesion. Using primary gastric epithelial cell cultures, effects of H. pylori on the expression and localization of tight/adherence junction proteins and the resulting morphological changes and migratory capabilities were studied under in vivo-like conditions. Gastric epithelial cells were isolated from biopsies or gastrectomies and maintained in Quantum286 on collagen I-coated culture dishes or cover-slips. Cell cultures were characterized and further analyzed by western blot and immunofluorescent staining for ZO-1, p120ctn, and H. pylori CagA. Morphological changes and migratory response were monitored by time-lapse digital image microscopy. ZO-1 and p120ctn protein expression levels remain unaffected by H. pylori infection. Immunocytochemistry on H. pylori-infected primary cell monolayers focally showed disruption of intercellular ZO-1 staining and accumulation of ZO-1 in small vesicles. H. pylori infection recruited non-phosphorylated p120ctn to perinuclear vesicles. The fraction of phosphorylated p120ctn increased and could be detected in the nucleus, at the cell membrane, and at the leading edge of migrating cells. These alterations, triggered by H. pylori infection, are associated with an elongation phenotype and increased migration.

    Pathology, research and practice 2007;203;6;433-44

  • Global, in vivo, and site-specific phosphorylation dynamics in signaling networks.

    Olsen JV, Blagoev B, Gnad F, Macek B, Kumar C, Mortensen P and Mann M

    Center for Experimental BioInformatics, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Southern Denmark, DK-5230 Odense, Denmark.

    Cell signaling mechanisms often transmit information via posttranslational protein modifications, most importantly reversible protein phosphorylation. Here we develop and apply a general mass spectrometric technology for identification and quantitation of phosphorylation sites as a function of stimulus, time, and subcellular location. We have detected 6,600 phosphorylation sites on 2,244 proteins and have determined their temporal dynamics after stimulating HeLa cells with epidermal growth factor (EGF) and recorded them in the Phosida database. Fourteen percent of phosphorylation sites are modulated at least 2-fold by EGF, and these were classified by their temporal profiles. Surprisingly, a majority of proteins contain multiple phosphorylation sites showing different kinetics, suggesting that they serve as platforms for integrating signals. In addition to protein kinase cascades, the targets of reversible phosphorylation include ubiquitin ligases, guanine nucleotide exchange factors, and at least 46 different transcriptional regulators. The dynamic phosphoproteome provides a missing link in a global, integrative view of cellular regulation.

    Cell 2006;127;3;635-48

  • p120 serine and threonine phosphorylation is controlled by multiple ligand-receptor pathways but not cadherin ligation.

    Xia X, Carnahan RH, Vaughan MH, Wildenberg GA and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, 771 Preston Research Building, Nashville, TN 37232, USA.

    p120-catenin (p120) regulates cadherin turnover and is required for cadherin stability. Extensive and dynamic phosphorylation on tyrosine, serine and threonine residues in the N-terminal regulatory domain has been postulated to regulate p120 function, possibly through modulation of the efficiency of p120/cadherin interaction. Here we have utilized novel phospho-specific monoclonal antibodies to four major p120 serine and threonine phosphorylation sites to monitor individual phosphorylation events and their consequences. Surprisingly, membrane-localization and not cadherin interaction is the main determinant in p120 serine and threonine phosphorylation and dephosphorylation. Furthermore, the phospho-status of these four residues had no obvious effect on p120's role in cadherin complex stabilization or cell-cell adhesion. Interestingly, dephosphorylation was dramatically induced by PKC activation, but PKC-independent pathways were also evident. The data suggest that p120 dephosphorylation at these sites is modulated by multiple cell surface receptors primarily through PKC-dependent pathways, but these changes do not seem to reduce p120/cadherin affinity.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, CA68684, CA95103

    Experimental cell research 2006;312;17;3336-48

  • p120 catenin is essential for mesenchymal cadherin-mediated regulation of cell motility and invasiveness.

    Yanagisawa M and Anastasiadis PZ

    Mayo Clinic Comprehensive Cancer Center, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA.

    During epithelial tumor progression, the loss of E-cadherin expression and inappropriate expression of mesenchymal cadherins coincide with increased invasiveness. Reexpression experiments have established E-cadherin as an invasion suppressor. However, the mechanism by which E-cadherin suppresses invasiveness and the role of mesenchymal cadherins are poorly understood. We show that both p120 catenin and mesenchymal cadherins are required for the invasiveness of E-cadherin-deficient cells. p120 binding promotes the up-regulation of mesenchymal cadherins and the activation of Rac1, which are essential for cell migration and invasiveness. p120 also promotes invasiveness by inhibiting RhoA activity, independently of cadherin association. Furthermore, association of endogenous p120 with E-cadherin is required for E-cadherin-mediated suppression of invasiveness and is accompanied by a reduction in mesenchymal cadherin levels. The data indicate that p120 acts as a rheostat, promoting a sessile cellular phenotype when associated with E-cadherin or a motile phenotype when associated with mesenchymal cadherins.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA100467

    The Journal of cell biology 2006;174;7;1087-96

  • Expression of inappropriate cadherins by epithelial tumor cells promotes endocytosis and degradation of E-cadherin via competition for p120(ctn).

    Maeda M, Johnson E, Mandal SH, Lawson KR, Keim SA, Svoboda RA, Caplan S, Wahl JK, Wheelock MJ and Johnson KR

    Department of Oral Biology, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198, USA.

    Cadherin cell-cell adhesion proteins play an important role in modulating the behavior of tumor cells. E-cadherin serves as a suppressor of tumor cell invasion, and when tumor cells turn on the expression of a non-epithelial cadherin, they often express less E-cadherin, enhancing the tumorigenic phenotype of the cells. Here, we show that when A431 cells are forced to express R-cadherin, they dramatically downregulate the expression of endogenous E- and P-cadherin. In addition, we show that this downregulation is owing to increased turnover of the endogenous cadherins via clathrin-dependent endocytosis. p120(ctn) binds to the juxtamembrane domain of classical cadherins and has been proposed to regulate cadherin adhesive activity. One way p120(ctn) may accomplish this is to serve as a rheostat to regulate the levels of cadherin. Here, we show that the degradation of E-cadherin in response to expression of R-cadherin is owing to competition for p120(ctn).

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: P30-CA36727, T32-CA09746; NCRR NIH HHS: P20-RR018759; NIDCR NIH HHS: R01-DE12308; NIGMS NIH HHS: R01-GM51188

    Oncogene 2006;25;33;4595-604

  • P120ctn overexpression enhances beta-catenin-E-cadherin binding and down regulates expression of survivin and cyclin D1 in BEL-7404 hepatoma cells.

    Nong CZ, Pan LL, He WS, Zha XL, Ye HH and Huang HY

    Department of Experimental Center, Guangxi Hospital for Nationalities, Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, China.

    Aim: To understand the role of P120ctn in E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion and signaling as well as in hepatoma cell biological function.

    Methods: We stably overexpressed p120ctn isoform 3A in BEL-7404 human hepatoma cells and studied the effect of p120ctn on beta-catenin and E-cadherin binding as well as p120ctn and beta-catenin subcellular localization using immunoprecipitation, Western blotting and confocal microscopy. We also investigated the inhibitory effect of p120ctn transfection on the expression of apoptotic protein survivin survivin and cell cycle regulator cyclin D1 in the cells.

    Results: Western blotting indicated that p120ctn expression increased after cells were transfected with p120ctn isoform 3A. The protein was located mainly at membrane under immunofluorescent microscope. Beta-catenin nuclear expression was reduced after overexpression of p120ctn isoform 3A. The p120ctn-E-cadherin binding increased after transfection of p120ctn isoform 3A. Furthermore, overexpression of p120ctn down regulated the expression of apoptotic protein survivin and cell cycle regulator cyclin D1. These effects led to reduction of cell proliferation.

    Conclusion: Our results indicate that p120ctn plays an important role in regulating the formation of E-cadherin and -catenin complex, cell apoptosis, cell cycle and cancer cell biological function.

    World journal of gastroenterology 2006;12;8;1187-91

  • Diversification of transcriptional modulation: large-scale identification and characterization of putative alternative promoters of human genes.

    Kimura K, Wakamatsu A, Suzuki Y, Ota T, Nishikawa T, Yamashita R, Yamamoto J, Sekine M, Tsuritani K, Wakaguri H, Ishii S, Sugiyama T, Saito K, Isono Y, Irie R, Kushida N, Yoneyama T, Otsuka R, Kanda K, Yokoi T, Kondo H, Wagatsuma M, Murakawa K, Ishida S, Ishibashi T, Takahashi-Fujii A, Tanase T, Nagai K, Kikuchi H, Nakai K, Isogai T and Sugano S

    Life Science Research Laboratory, Central Research Laboratory, Hitachi, Ltd., Kokubunji, Tokyo, 185-8601, Japan.

    By analyzing 1,780,295 5'-end sequences of human full-length cDNAs derived from 164 kinds of oligo-cap cDNA libraries, we identified 269,774 independent positions of transcriptional start sites (TSSs) for 14,628 human RefSeq genes. These TSSs were clustered into 30,964 clusters that were separated from each other by more than 500 bp and thus are very likely to constitute mutually distinct alternative promoters. To our surprise, at least 7674 (52%) human RefSeq genes were subject to regulation by putative alternative promoters (PAPs). On average, there were 3.1 PAPs per gene, with the composition of one CpG-island-containing promoter per 2.6 CpG-less promoters. In 17% of the PAP-containing loci, tissue-specific use of the PAPs was observed. The richest tissue sources of the tissue-specific PAPs were testis and brain. It was also intriguing that the PAP-containing promoters were enriched in the genes encoding signal transduction-related proteins and were rarer in the genes encoding extracellular proteins, possibly reflecting the varied functional requirement for and the restricted expression of those categories of genes, respectively. The patterns of the first exons were highly diverse as well. On average, there were 7.7 different splicing types of first exons per locus partly produced by the PAPs, suggesting that a wide variety of transcripts can be achieved by this mechanism. Our findings suggest that use of alternate promoters and consequent alternative use of first exons should play a pivotal role in generating the complexity required for the highly elaborated molecular systems in humans.

    Genome research 2006;16;1;55-65

  • p120-Catenin regulates clathrin-dependent endocytosis of VE-cadherin.

    Xiao K, Garner J, Buckley KM, Vincent PA, Chiasson CM, Dejana E, Faundez V and Kowalczyk AP

    Department of Dermatology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.

    VE-cadherin is an adhesion molecule critical to vascular barrier function and angiogenesis. VE-cadherin expression levels are regulated by p120 catenin, which prevents lysosomal degradation of cadherins by unknown mechanisms. To test whether the VE-cadherin cytoplasmic domain mediates endocytosis, and to elucidate the nature of the endocytic machinery involved, the VE-cadherin tail was fused to the interleukin (IL)-2 receptor (IL-2R) extracellular domain. Internalization assays demonstrated that the VE-cadherin tail dramatically increased endocytosis of the IL-2R in a clathrin-dependent manner. Interestingly, p120 inhibited VE-cadherin endocytosis via a mechanism that required direct interactions between p120 and the VE-cadherin cytoplasmic tail. However, p120 did not inhibit transferrin internalization, demonstrating that p120 selectively regulates cadherin internalization rather than globally inhibiting clathrin-dependent endocytosis. Finally, cell surface labeling experiments in cells expressing green fluorescent protein-tagged p120 indicated that the VE-cadherin-p120 complex dissociates upon internalization. These results support a model in which the VE-cadherin tail mediates interactions with clathrin-dependent endocytic machinery, and this endocytic processing is inhibited by p120 binding to the cadherin tail. These findings suggest a novel mechanism by which a cytoplasmic binding partner for a transmembrane receptor can serve as a selective plasma membrane retention signal, thereby modulating the availability of the protein for endo-lysosomal processing.

    Funded by: NIAMS NIH HHS: R01 AR048266, R01 AR050501, R01 AR05051, R01 AR48266

    Molecular biology of the cell 2005;16;11;5141-51

  • Increased expression of delta-catenin/neural plakophilin-related armadillo protein is associated with the down-regulation and redistribution of E-cadherin and p120ctn in human prostate cancer.

    Lu Q, Dobbs LJ, Gregory CW, Lanford GW, Revelo MP, Shappell S and Chen YH

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA. luq@mail.ecu.edu

    delta-Catenin, or neural plakophilin-related armadillo protein, is a unique armadillo domain-containing protein in that it is neural-specific and primarily expressed in the brain. However, our recent analysis of the human genome revealed a consistent association of delta-catenin messenger RNA sequences with malignant cells, although the significance of these findings was unclear. In this study, we report that a number of delta-catenin epitopes were expressed in human prostate cancer cells. Western blot and tissue microarray revealed a close association between increased delta-catenin expression and human primary prostatic adenocarcinomas. The analyses of 90 human prostate cancer and 90 benign prostate tissue samples demonstrated that an estimated 85% of prostatic adenocarcinomas showed enhanced delta-catenin immunoreactivity. delta-Catenin expression increased with prognostically significant increased Gleason scores. By analyzing the same tumor cell clusters using consecutive sections, we showed that an increased delta-catenin immunoreactivity was accompanied by the down-regulation and redistribution of E-cadherin and p120ctn, major cell junction proteins whose inactivation is frequently associated with cancer progression. Furthermore, overexpression of delta-catenin in tumorigenic CWR-R1 cells that are derived from human prostate cancer xenograft resulted in reduced immunoreactivity for E-cadherin and p120ctn at the cell-cell junction. This is the first study comparing overexpression of delta-catenin with the E-cadherin/catenin system in cancer and shows that delta-catenin may be intimately involved in regulating E-cadherin/p120ctn cell-cell adhesion in prostate cancer progression.

    Human pathology 2005;36;10;1037-48

  • Phosphoproteome analysis of HeLa cells using stable isotope labeling with amino acids in cell culture (SILAC).

    Amanchy R, Kalume DE, Iwahori A, Zhong J and Pandey A

    McKusick-Nathans Institute for Genetic Medicine and the Department of Biological Chemistry and Oncology, Johns Hopkins University, 733 N. Broadway, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.

    Identification of phosphorylated proteins remains a difficult task despite technological advances in protein purification methods and mass spectrometry. Here, we report identification of tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins by coupling stable isotope labeling with amino acids in cell culture (SILAC) to mass spectrometry. We labeled HeLa cells with stable isotopes of tyrosine, or, a combination of arginine and lysine to identify tyrosine phosphorylated proteins. This allowed identification of 118 proteins, of which only 45 proteins were previously described as tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins. A total of 42 in vivo tyrosine phosphorylation sites were mapped, including 34 novel ones. We validated the phosphorylation status of a subset of novel proteins including cytoskeleton associated protein 1, breast cancer anti-estrogen resistance 3, chromosome 3 open reading frame 6, WW binding protein 2, Nice-4 and RNA binding motif protein 4. Our strategy can be used to identify potential kinase substrates without prior knowledge of the signaling pathways and can also be applied to profiling to specific kinases in cells. Because of its sensitivity and general applicability, our approach will be useful for investigating signaling pathways in a global fashion and for using phosphoproteomics for functional annotation of genomes.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA 88843; NHLBI NIH HHS: HV 28180

    Journal of proteome research 2005;4;5;1661-71

  • Time-resolved mass spectrometry of tyrosine phosphorylation sites in the epidermal growth factor receptor signaling network reveals dynamic modules.

    Zhang Y, Wolf-Yadlin A, Ross PL, Pappin DJ, Rush J, Lauffenburger DA and White FM

    Biological Engineering Division, Massachusetts Institute of Technnology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.

    Ligand binding to cell surface receptors initiates a cascade of signaling events regulated by dynamic phosphorylation events on a multitude of pathway proteins. Quantitative features, including intensity, timing, and duration of phosphorylation of particular residues, may play a role in determining cellular response, but experimental data required for analysis of these features have not previously been available. To understand the dynamic operation of signaling cascades, we have developed a method enabling the simultaneous quantification of tyrosine phosphorylation of specific residues on dozens of key proteins in a time-resolved manner, downstream of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) activation. Tryptic peptides from four different EGFR stimulation time points were labeled with four isoforms of the iTRAQ reagent to enable downstream quantification. After mixing of the labeled samples, tyrosine-phosphorylated peptides were immunoprecipitated with an anti-phosphotyrosine antibody and further enriched by IMAC before LC/MS/MS analysis. Database searching and manual confirmation of peptide phosphorylation site assignments led to the identification of 78 tyrosine phosphorylation sites on 58 proteins from a single analysis. Replicate analyses of a separate biological sample provided both validation of this first data set and identification of 26 additional tyrosine phosphorylation sites and 18 additional proteins. iTRAQ fragment ion ratios provided time course phosphorylation profiles for each site. The data set of quantitative temporal phosphorylation profiles was further characterized by self-organizing maps, which resulted in identification of several cohorts of tyrosine residues exhibiting self-similar temporal phosphorylation profiles, operationally defining dynamic modules in the EGFR signaling network consistent with particular cellular processes. The presence of novel proteins and associated tyrosine phosphorylation sites within these modules indicates additional components of this network and potentially localizes the topological action of these proteins. Additional analysis and modeling of the data generated in this study are likely to yield more sophisticated models of receptor tyrosine kinase-initiated signal transduction, trafficking, and regulation.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA96504; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK070172, DK42816; NIGMS NIH HHS: GM68762

    Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP 2005;4;9;1240-50

  • Global phosphoproteome of HT-29 human colon adenocarcinoma cells.

    Kim JE, Tannenbaum SR and White FM

    Biological Engineering Division, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massassachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA.

    Phosphorylation events in cellular signaling cascades triggered by a variety of cellular stimuli modulate protein function, leading to diverse cellular outcomes including cell division, growth, death, and differentiation. Abnormal regulation of protein phosphorylation due to mutation or overexpression of signaling proteins often results in various disease states. We provide here a list of protein phosphorylation sites identified from HT-29 human colon adenocarcinoma cell line by immobilized metal affinity chromatography (IMAC) combined with liquid chromatography (LC)-tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) analysis. In this study, proteins extracted from HT-29 whole cell lysates were digested with trypsin and carboxylate groups on the resulting peptides were converted to methyl esters. Derivatized phosphorylated peptides were enriched using Fe(3+)-chelated metal affinity resin. Phosphopeptides retained by IMAC were separated by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and analyzed by electrospray ionization-quadrupole-time-of-flight (ESI-Q-TOF) mass spectrometry. We identified 238 phosphorylation sites, 213 of which could be conclusively localized to a single residue, from 116 proteins by searching MS/MS spectra against the human protein database using MASCOT. Peptide identification and phosphorylation site assignment were confirmed by manual inspection of the MS/MS spectra. Many of the phosphorylation sites identified in our results have not been described previously in the scientific literature. We attempted to ascribe functionality to the sites identified in this work by searching for potential kinase motifs with Scansite (http://scansite.mit.edu) and obtaining information on kinase substrate selectivity from Pattern Explorer (http://scansite.mit.edu/pe). The list of protein phosphorylation sites identified in the present experiment provides broad information on phosphorylated proteins under normal (asynchronous) cell culture conditions. Sites identified in this study may be utilized as surrogate bio-markers to assess the activity of selected kinases and signaling pathways from different cell states and exogenous stimuli.

    Funded by: NIEHS NIH HHS: P30 ES 002109, P30 ES002109; NIGMS NIH HHS: 1P50 GM 68762-01

    Journal of proteome research 2005;4;4;1339-46

  • Regulation of E-cadherin endocytosis by nectin through afadin, Rap1, and p120ctn.

    Hoshino T, Sakisaka T, Baba T, Yamada T, Kimura T and Takai Y

    Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine/Faculty of Medicine, Osaka 565-0871, Japan.

    Adherens junctions (AJs) are a major cell-cell adhesion structure in epithelial cells that are formed by two major cell-cell adhesion molecules, E-cadherin and nectin. We have previously shown that nectin first forms cell-cell adhesion and then recruits non-trans-interacting E-cadherin to the nectin-based cell-cell adhesion sites, which gradually trans-interact there, eventually forming AJs. We have examined here the effect of trans-interacting nectin on non-trans-interacting E-cadherin endocytosis. Trans-interacting nectin capable of associating with afadin, but not trans-interacting nectin mutant incapable of associating with afadin, inhibited non-trans-interacting E-cadherin endocytosis in intact cells. Afadin is a nectin- and actin filament-binding protein that connects nectin to the actin cytoskeleton. Studies on the mode of action of the nectin-afadin system using cell-free assay revealed that afadin associated with nectin bound Rap1 activated by trans-interacting nectin, interacted with p120ctn, and strengthened the binding of p120ctn to E-cadherin, eventually reducing non-trans-interacting E-cadherin endocytosis. Afadin, which did not bind Rap1, was inactive in this capacity. These results indicate that trans-interacting nectin inhibits non-trans-interacting E-cadherin endocytosis through afadin, Rap1, and p120ctn and thereby further accumulates non-trans-interacting E-cadherin to the nectin-based cell-cell adhesion sites for the formation of AJs.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;25;24095-103

  • The catenin p120ctn inhibits Kaiso-mediated transcriptional repression of the beta-catenin/TCF target gene matrilysin.

    Spring CM, Kelly KF, O'Kelly I, Graham M, Crawford HC and Daniel JM

    Department of Biology, LSB-331, McMaster University, 1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8S 4K1.

    The POZ-zinc finger transcription factor Kaiso was first identified as a specific binding partner for the Armadillo catenin and cell adhesion cofactor, p120ctn. Kaiso is a unique POZ protein with bi-modal DNA-binding properties; it associates with a sequence-specific DNA consensus Kaiso binding site (KBS) or methylated CpG dinucleotides, and regulates transcription of artificial promoters containing either site. Interestingly, the promoter of the Wnt/beta-catenin/TCF target gene matrilysin possesses two conserved copies of the KBS, which suggested that Kaiso might regulate matrilysin expression. In this study, we demonstrate using chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis that Kaiso associates with the matrilysin promoter in vivo. Minimal promoter assays further confirmed that Kaiso specifically repressed transcription of the matrilysin promoter; mutation of the KBS element or RNAi-mediated depletion of Kaiso abrogated this effect. More importantly, Kaiso blocked beta-catenin-mediated activation of the matrilysin promoter. Consistent with our previous findings, both Kaiso-DNA binding and Kaiso-mediated transcriptional repression of the matrilysin promoter were inhibited by overexpression of wild-type p120ctn, but not by a p120ctn mutant exhibiting impaired nuclear import. Collectively, our data establish Kaiso as a sequence-specific transcriptional repressor of the matrilysin promoter, and suggest that p120ctn and beta-catenin act in a synergistic manner, via distinct mechanisms, to activate matrilysin expression.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA-10012601

    Experimental cell research 2005;305;2;253-65

  • Overexpressed P-cadherin/CDH3 promotes motility of pancreatic cancer cells by interacting with p120ctn and activating rho-family GTPases.

    Taniuchi K, Nakagawa H, Hosokawa M, Nakamura T, Eguchi H, Ohigashi H, Ishikawa O, Katagiri T and Nakamura Y

    Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, Human Genome Center, Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo, 4-6-1 Shirokanedai, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-8639, Japan.

    P-Cadherin/CDH3 belongs to the family of classic cadherins that are engaged in various cellular activities including motility, invasion, and signaling of tumor cells, in addition to cell adhesion. However, the biological roles of P-cadherin itself are not fully characterized. Based on information derived from a previous genome-wide cDNA microarray analysis of microdissected pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), we focused on P-cadherin as one of the genes most strongly overexpressed in the great majority of PDACs. To investigate the consequences of overexpression of P-cadherin in terms of pancreatic carcinogenesis and tumor progression, we used a P-cadherin-deficient PDAC cell line, Panc-1, to construct a cell line (Panc1-CDH3) that stably overexpressed P-cadherin. Induction of P-cadherin in Panc1-CDH3 increased the motility of the cancer cells, but a blocking antibody against P-cadherin suppressed the motility in vitro. Overexpression of P-cadherin was strongly associated with cytoplasmic accumulation of one of the catenins, p120ctn, and cadherin switching in PDAC cells. Moreover, P-cadherin-dependent activation of cell motility was associated with activation of Rho GTPases, Rac1 and Cdc42, through accumulation of p120ctn in cytoplasm and cadherin switching. These findings suggest that overexpression of P-cadherin is likely to be related to the biological aggressiveness of PDACs; blocking of P-cadherin activity or its associated signaling could be a novel therapeutic approach for treatment of aggressive pancreatic cancers.

    Cancer research 2005;65;8;3092-9

  • Monoallelic expression and asynchronous replication of p120 catenin in mouse and human cells.

    Gimelbrant AA, Ensminger AW, Qi P, Zucker J and Chess A

    Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142, USA.

    The number of autosomal mammalian genes subject to random monoallelic expression has been limited to genes highly specific to the function of chemosensory neurons or lymphocytes, making this phenomenon difficult to address systematically. Here we demonstrate that asynchronous DNA replication can be used as a marker for the identification of novel genes with monoallelic expression and identify p120 catenin, a gene involved in cell adhesion, as belonging to this class. p120 is widely expressed; its presence in available cell lines allowed us to address quantitative aspects of monoallelic expression. We show that the epigenetic choice of active allele is clonally stable and that biallelic clones express p120 at twice the level of monoallelic clones. Unlike previous reports about genes of this type, we found that expression of p120 can be monoallelic in one cell type and strictly biallelic in another. We show that in human lymphoblasts, the silencing of one allele is incomplete. These unexpected properties are likely to be wide-spread, as we show that the Tlr4 gene shares them. Identification of monoallelic expression of a nearly ubiquitous gene indicates that this type of gene regulation is more common than previously thought. This has important implications for carcinogenesis and definition of cell identity.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;2;1354-9

  • Immunoaffinity profiling of tyrosine phosphorylation in cancer cells.

    Rush J, Moritz A, Lee KA, Guo A, Goss VL, Spek EJ, Zhang H, Zha XM, Polakiewicz RD and Comb MJ

    Cell Signaling Technology Inc., 166B Cummings Center, Beverly, Massachusetts 01915, USA.

    Tyrosine kinases play a prominent role in human cancer, yet the oncogenic signaling pathways driving cell proliferation and survival have been difficult to identify, in part because of the complexity of the pathways and in part because of low cellular levels of tyrosine phosphorylation. In general, global phosphoproteomic approaches reveal small numbers of peptides containing phosphotyrosine. We have developed a strategy that emphasizes the phosphotyrosine component of the phosphoproteome and identifies large numbers of tyrosine phosphorylation sites. Peptides containing phosphotyrosine are isolated directly from protease-digested cellular protein extracts with a phosphotyrosine-specific antibody and are identified by tandem mass spectrometry. Applying this approach to several cell systems, including cancer cell lines, shows it can be used to identify activated protein kinases and their phosphorylated substrates without prior knowledge of the signaling networks that are activated, a first step in profiling normal and oncogenic signaling networks.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 1R43CA101106

    Nature biotechnology 2005;23;1;94-101

  • Substrate-trapping techniques in the identification of cellular PTP targets.

    Blanchetot C, Chagnon M, Dubé N, Hallé M and Tremblay ML

    McGill Cancer Centre, McGill University, 3655 Sir William-Osler, Room 715, Montreal, Quebec, H3G1Y6 Canada. christophe.blanchetot@mcgill.ca

    Tyrosine phosphorylation is negatively regulated by the protein-tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs). In order to find the physiological substrates of these enzymes, diverse PTP mutants that do not possess any catalytic activities but appear to bind tightly to their tyrosine phosphorylated substrates have been designed. Hence, they can be used as tools to pull out their respective substrates from heterogeneous extracts. Named PTP "substrate-trapping" mutants by the Tonks laboratory, they represent a diverse variety of defective PTPs that are epitomized by the Cys to Ser mutant (C/S) where the active cysteine residue of the signature motif is mutated to a serine residue. In addition, new mutants have been developed which are expected to help characterize novel and less abundant substrates. In this article, we review and describe all the different substrate-trapping mutants that have successfully been used or that hold interesting promises. We present their methodology to identify substrates in vivo (co-immunoprecipitation) and in vitro (GST pulldown), and provide a current list of substrates that have been identified using these technologies.

    Methods (San Diego, Calif.) 2005;35;1;44-53

  • Kaiso is a genome-wide repressor of transcription that is essential for amphibian development.

    Ruzov A, Dunican DS, Prokhortchouk A, Pennings S, Stancheva I, Prokhortchouk E and Meehan RR

    Department of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Edinburgh, Hugh Robson Building, George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9XD, UK.

    DNA methylation in animals is thought to repress transcription via methyl-CpG specific binding proteins, which recruit enzymatic machinery promoting the formation of inactive chromatin at targeted loci. Loss of DNA methylation can result in the activation of normally silent genes during mouse and amphibian development. Paradoxically, global changes in gene expression have not been observed in mice that are null for the methyl-CpG specific repressors MeCP2, MBD1 or MBD2. Here, we demonstrate that xKaiso, a novel methyl-CpG specific repressor protein, is required to maintain transcription silencing during early Xenopus laevis development. In the absence of xKaiso function, premature zygotic gene expression occurs before the mid-blastula transition (MBT). Subsequent phenotypes (developmental arrest and apoptosis) strongly resemble those observed for hypomethylated embryos. Injection of wild-type human kaiso mRNA can rescue the phenotype and associated gene expression changes of xKaiso-depleted embryos. Our results, including gene expression profiling, are consistent with an essential role for xKaiso as a global repressor of methylated genes during early vertebrate development.

    Development (Cambridge, England) 2004;131;24;6185-94

  • Regulation of cadherin stability and turnover by p120ctn: implications in disease and cancer.

    Reynolds AB and Carnahan RH

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University, 440 PRB, 2220 Pierce Ave., Nashville, TN 37232-6840, USA. al.reynolds@vanderbilt.edu

    The strength of cadherin based cell-cell adhesion is modulated by signaling events that control the amount of cadherin present at the cell surface, and the clustering of cadherins into strong adhesive junctions. p120ctn has been indirectly implicated in clustering for some time, but it now appears that its main function is to regulate cadherin turnover. Forced p120 downregulation (e.g., by siRNA targeting) results in a striking dose-dependant loss of endogenous cadherins, indicating that p120 is essential for cadherin stability. These data challenge some important paradigms and suggest novel interpretations of existing data. For example, most of the effects of DN-cadherin expression can be accounted for by sequestration of p120. Thus, DN-cadherins phenocopy p120-downregulation, and a significant literature exists already that suggests consequences of p120-deficiency in disease and cancer. Moreover, p120 downregulation occurs frequently in essentially all of the major carcinoma types. Thus, it is possible that the classic observation of E-cadherin-deficiency in metastatic cancer may in some cases be due to p120 downregulation rather than better understood mechanisms acting at the level of E-cadherin transcription.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 1P50CA95103, R01-CA55724

    Seminars in cell & developmental biology 2004;15;6;657-63

  • Nephrin forms a complex with adherens junction proteins and CASK in podocytes and in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells expressing nephrin.

    Lehtonen S, Lehtonen E, Kudlicka K, Holthöfer H and Farquhar MG

    Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA.

    Mutations in the NPHS1 gene encoding nephrin lead to congenital nephrotic syndrome of the Finnish type. Nephrin is a key component of the glomerular slit diaphragms between epithelial foot processes, but its role in the pathogenesis of this disease is poorly understood. To further clarify the molecular mechanisms involved we investigated the interactions between nephrin and other components of the foot processes and filtration slits, especially adherens junction proteins, and searched for novel nephrin interacting proteins. Using co-immunoprecipitation and pull-down assays we show here that nephrin forms a multiprotein complex with cadherins and p120 catenin and with three scaffolding proteins, ZO-1, CD2AP, and CASK, in kidney glomeruli and when expressed in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells. CASK was identified as a novel binding partner of nephrin by mass spectrometry and was localized to podocytes in the glomerulus. CASK is a scaffolding protein that participates in maintenance of polarized epithelial cell architecture by linking membrane proteins and signaling molecules to the actin cytoskeleton. Our results support a model whereby the glomerular slit diaphragms are composed of cell adhesion molecules of the immunoglobulin and cadherin superfamilies that are connected to each other and to the actin cytoskeleton and signaling networks via the cytoplasmic scaffolding proteins CASK, CD2AP, and ZO-1.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK 17724, R01 DK017724, R37 DK017724

    The American journal of pathology 2004;165;3;923-36

  • Sequence comparison of human and mouse genes reveals a homologous block structure in the promoter regions.

    Suzuki Y, Yamashita R, Shirota M, Sakakibara Y, Chiba J, Mizushima-Sugano J, Nakai K and Sugano S

    Human Genome Center, The Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo, Minato-ku, Tokyo, 108-8639, Japan. ysuzuki@ims.u-tokyo.ac.jp

    Comparative sequence analysis was carried out for the regions adjacent to experimentally validated transcriptional start sites (TSSs), using 3324 pairs of human and mouse genes. We aligned the upstream putative promoter sequences over the 1-kb proximal regions and found that the sequence conservation could not be further extended at, on average, 510 bp upstream positions of the TSSs. This discontinuous manner of the sequence conservation revealed a "block" structure in about one-third of the putative promoter regions. Consistently, we also observed that G+C content and CpG frequency were significantly different inside and outside the blocks. Within the blocks, the sequence identity was uniformly 65% regardless of their length. About 90% of the previously characterized transcription factor binding sites were located within those blocks. In 46% of the blocks, the 5' ends were bounded by interspersed repetitive elements, some of which may have nucleated the genomic rearrangements. The length of the blocks was shortest in the promoters of genes encoding transcription factors and of genes whose expression patterns are brain specific, which suggests that the evolutional diversifications in the transcriptional modulations should be the most marked in these populations of genes.

    Genome research 2004;14;9;1711-8

  • Proteomic, functional, and domain-based analysis of in vivo 14-3-3 binding proteins involved in cytoskeletal regulation and cellular organization.

    Jin J, Smith FD, Stark C, Wells CD, Fawcett JP, Kulkarni S, Metalnikov P, O'Donnell P, Taylor P, Taylor L, Zougman A, Woodgett JR, Langeberg LK, Scott JD and Pawson T

    Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital, 600 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1X5, Canada.

    Background: 14-3-3 proteins are abundant and conserved polypeptides that mediate the cellular effects of basophilic protein kinases through their ability to bind specific peptide motifs phosphorylated on serine or threonine.

    Results: We have used mass spectrometry to analyze proteins that associate with 14-3-3 isoforms in HEK293 cells. This identified 170 unique 14-3-3-associated proteins, which show only modest overlap with previous 14-3-3 binding partners isolated by affinity chromatography. To explore this large set of proteins, we developed a domain-based hierarchical clustering technique that distinguishes structurally and functionally related subsets of 14-3-3 target proteins. This analysis revealed a large group of 14-3-3 binding partners that regulate cytoskeletal architecture. Inhibition of 14-3-3 phosphoprotein recognition in vivo indicates the general importance of such interactions in cellular morphology and membrane dynamics. Using tandem proteomic and biochemical approaches, we identify a phospho-dependent 14-3-3 binding site on the A kinase anchoring protein (AKAP)-Lbc, a guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) for the Rho GTPase. 14-3-3 binding to AKAP-Lbc, induced by PKA, suppresses Rho activation in vivo.

    Conclusion: 14-3-3 proteins can potentially engage around 0.6% of the human proteome. Domain-based clustering has identified specific subsets of 14-3-3 targets, including numerous proteins involved in the dynamic control of cell architecture. This notion has been validated by the broad inhibition of 14-3-3 phosphorylation-dependent binding in vivo and by the specific analysis of AKAP-Lbc, a RhoGEF that is controlled by its interaction with 14-3-3.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK44239

    Current biology : CB 2004;14;16;1436-50

  • A role for Galpha12/Galpha13 in p120ctn regulation.

    Krakstad BF, Ardawatia VV and Aragay AM

    Department of Biomedicine, Section for Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Bergen, Jonas Lies Vei 91, 5009 Bergen, Norway.

    The catenin p120 (p120ctn) is an armadillo repeat domain protein that binds to cadherins and has been shown to facilitate strong cell-cell adhesion. We have investigated a possible link between heterotrimeric G proteins and p120ctn, and found that both Galpha12 and Galpha13 can completely and selectively abrogate the p120ctn-induced branching phenotype in different cell types. Consistent with these observations, the expression of Galpha12 or Galpha13 compensates for the reduction of Rho activity induced by p120ctn. On the other hand, p120ctn can be selectively coimmunoprecipitated with Galpha12, and the coimmunoprecipitation was favored by activation of the G protein. A specific interaction between p120ctn and Galpha12Q231L was also observed in in vitro binding experiments. In addition, p120ctn can be immunoprecipitated along with Galpha12Q231L in L cells in absence of E-cadherin. Interestingly, the expression of Galpha12Q231L increases the amount of p120ctn associated with E-cadherin. These findings demonstrate that Galpha12 and p120ctn are binding partners, and they also suggest a role for Galpha12 in regulating p120ctn activity and its interaction with cadherins. We propose that the Galpha12-p120ctn interaction acts as a molecular switch, which regulates cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2004;101;28;10314-9

  • Cytoplasmic p120ctn regulates the invasive phenotypes of E-cadherin-deficient breast cancer.

    Shibata T, Kokubu A, Sekine S, Kanai Y and Hirohashi S

    Pathology Division, National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.

    In a search for signaling molecules that act downstream of E-cadherin inactivation in cancer, we examined the expression and localization of E-cadherin-associated proteins in lobular carcinoma, in which the E-cadherin gene is frequently inactivated, and found that E-cadherin down-regulation correlated with the cytoplasmic localization of p120ctn. Similar cytoplasmic localization of p120ctn and growth factor-induced accumulation of tyrosine-phosphorylated p120ctn in the protrusive domain were observed in E-cadherin-deficient breast cancer cells. Down-regulation of endogenous p120ctn by RNA interference promoted stress fiber formation and induced a flattened morphology with an increase of Rho-GTPase activity; it also reduced the development of membranous protrusions and migratory activity in E-cadherin-deficient breast cancer cells. Inactivation of E-cadherin in cancer cells is associated with the conversion from epithelial to mesenchymal phenotype, which also occurs in physiological conditions such as developmental processes. Cytoplasmic localization of p120ctn accompanied by E-cadherin down-regulation was observed in mesoderm cells that had undergone epithelial-mesenchymal transition during early mouse embryogenesis. Collectively, our results suggest that cytoplasmic p120ctn may contribute to the invasive phenotype of E-cadherin-deficient breast cancer cells.

    The American journal of pathology 2004;164;6;2269-78

  • Transcriptome characterization elucidates signaling networks that control human ES cell growth and differentiation.

    Brandenberger R, Wei H, Zhang S, Lei S, Murage J, Fisk GJ, Li Y, Xu C, Fang R, Guegler K, Rao MS, Mandalam R, Lebkowski J and Stanton LW

    Geron Corporation, Menlo Park, California 94025, USA. rbrandenberger@geron.com

    Human embryonic stem (hES) cells hold promise for generating an unlimited supply of cells for replacement therapies. To characterize hES cells at the molecular level, we obtained 148,453 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) from undifferentiated hES cells and three differentiated derivative subpopulations. Over 32,000 different transcripts expressed in hES cells were identified, of which more than 16,000 do not match closely any gene in the UniGene public database. Queries to this EST database revealed 532 significantly upregulated and 140 significantly downregulated genes in undifferentiated hES cells. These data highlight changes in the transcriptional network that occur when hES cells differentiate. Among the differentially regulated genes are several components of signaling pathways and transcriptional regulators that likely play key roles in hES cell growth and differentiation. The genomic data presented here may facilitate the derivation of clinically useful cell types from hES cells.

    Nature biotechnology 2004;22;6;707-16

  • Laminar shear stress differentially modulates gene expression of p120 catenin, Kaiso transcription factor, and vascular endothelial cadherin in human coronary artery endothelial cells.

    Kondapalli J, Flozak AS and Albuquerque ML

    Critical Care Laboratory of Vascular Research, Division of Critical Care Medicine, Children's Memorial Hospital, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

    We demonstrated previously that laminar shear stress (LSS) enhances human coronary artery endothelial cell (HCAEC) wound closure via a vascular endothelial cadherin (VE-cadherin)-dependent mechanism. VE-cadherin can interact with p120 catenin (p120(ctn)) to mediate cell locomotion and proliferation. In this study, we hypothesized that p120(ctn) and an interacting protein, Kaiso, a transcriptional factor with which p120(ctn) may interact, would be expressed differentially at the wound border and away from the wound border in HCAEC exposed to LSS. One of the major goals in this study was to assess the differential gene expression of p120(ctn), Kaiso, and VE-cadherin in HCAEC at specific locations along the wound border to further our understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in wound closure. We combined the technique of laser capture microdissection with quantitative real time PCR to compare p120(ctn), Kaiso, and VE-cadherin mRNA expression in HCAEC at and away from the wound border under LSS. Total RNA was isolated from 200-1,000 laser-captured HCAEC and reverse transcribed into cDNA. Detection of p120(ctn), Kaiso, and VE-cadherin mRNA was carried out using quantitative real time PCR. Normalization of cDNA templates was achieved by glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) quantification. Quantitative real time PCR analysis revealed p120(ctn):GAPDH ratios, Kaiso: GAPDH ratios, and VE-cadherin:GAPDH ratios, relative to static control for each set, of 0.99-4.18 (mean +/- S.E., 1.94 +/- 0.404), 1.0-5.24 (2.11 +/- 0.51), and 0.99-1.42 (1.09 +/- 0.09) after 3 h of LSS, respectively. With these techniques, we found that p120(ctn) and Kaiso transcripts were increased in laser-captured HCAEC at the wound border compared with HCAEC away from the wound border. In addition, differential expression of p120(ctn) and Kaiso mRNA was observed in HCAEC depending on how LSS was applied in relation to the wounding process. These techniques may have wide applicability for studying wound healing because gene expression of key adhesion molecules in HCAEC may now be determined from select regions of the endothelial wound border.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: R01 GM59931

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;12;11417-24

  • EGFR signaling to p120-catenin through phosphorylation at Y228.

    Mariner DJ, Davis MA and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232-6840, USA.

    Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) signals to p120(ctn) (p120), implying a role for EGFR in modulating cell-cell adhesion in epithelial tissues. p120 controls cadherin turnover, and may have other roles that modulate cadherin adhesiveness. To clarify the role for EGFR and other tyrosine kinases in regulating p120 function, we have generated and characterized a new phosphospecific antibody to p120 Y228, as well as a novel siRNA-based reconstitution system for analyzing roles of individual p120 phosphorylation events. In A431 cells, epidermal growth factor induced striking p120 phosphorylation at Y228. Y228-phosphorylated p120 localized to adherens junctions and lamellipodia, and was significantly enhanced in cells around the colony periphery. A screen of carcinoma cell lines revealed that some contain unusually high steady state levels of Y228 phosphorylation, suggesting that disregulated kinase activity in tumors may affect adhesion by constitutive cross talk to cadherin complexes. Despite these observations, mutation of Y228 and other prominent Src-associated p120 phosphorylation sites did not noticeably reduce the ability of E-cadherin to assemble junctions and induce compaction of cultured cells. Although A431 cells display significant activation of both EGFR and Src kinases, our data suggest that these account for only a fraction of the steady state activity that targets p120 Y228, and that Src family kinases are not necessary intermediates for epidermal growth factor-induced signaling to p120 Y228.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 1P50CA95103, P30CA68485, R01 CA55724

    Journal of cell science 2004;117;Pt 8;1339-50

  • p120 catenin associates with microtubules: inverse relationship between microtubule binding and Rho GTPase regulation.

    Franz CM and Ridley AJ

    Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Royal Free and University College School of Medicine, 91 Riding House Street, London W1W 7BS, UK.

    p120 catenin (p120ctn), an armadillo protein and component of the cadherin adhesion complex, has been found recently to induce a dendritic morphology by regulating Rho family GTPases. We have identified specific serines within the Arm repeat domain that, when mutated to alanine, promote p120ctn association with interphase microtubules, leading to microtubule reorganization and stabilization. The mutant p120ctn also localized to the mitotic spindle and centrosomes. In contrast to wild-type p120ctn, the microtubule-associated p120ctn mutant did not activate Rac1 and did not induce a dendritic morphology. In addition, we show that a basic motif within the p120ctn Arm repeat domain known to be required for the inhibition of RhoA is also required for binding to microtubules. We therefore propose that binding of p120ctn to microtubules is inversely related to its ability to regulate Rho GTPases.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;8;6588-94

  • A novel cell-cell junction system: the cortex adhaerens mosaic of lens fiber cells.

    Straub BK, Boda J, Kuhn C, Schnoelzer M, Korf U, Kempf T, Spring H, Hatzfeld M and Franke WW

    Division of Cell Biology, German Cancer Research Center, Im Neuenheimer Feld 280, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.

    The anucleate prismoid fiber cells of the eye lens are densely packed to form a tissue in which the plasma membranes and their associated cytoplasmic coat form a single giant cell-cell adhesive complex, the cortex adhaerens. Using biochemical and immunoprecipitation methods in various species (cow, pig, rat), in combination with immunolocalization microscopy, we have identified two different major kinds of cortical complex. In one, the transmembrane glycoproteins N-cadherin and cadherin-11 [which also occur in heterotypic ('mixed') complexes] are associated with alpha- and beta-catenin, plakoglobin (proportions variable among species), p120ctn and vinculin. The other complex contains ezrin, periplakin, periaxin and desmoyokin (and so is called the EPPD complex), usually together with moesin, spectrin(s) and plectin. In sections through lens fiber tissue, the short sides of the lens fiber hexagons appear to be enriched in the cadherin-based complexes, whereas the EPPD complexes also occur on the long sides. Moreover, high resolution double-label fluorescence microscopy has revealed, on the short sides, a finer, almost regular mosaicism of blocks comprising the cadherin-based, catenin-containing complexes, alternating with patches formed by the EPPD complexes. The latter, a new type of junctional plaque ensemble of proteins hitherto known only from certain other cell types, must be added to the list of major lens cortex proteins. We here discuss its possible functional importance for the maintenance of lens structure and functions, notably clear and sharp vision.

    Journal of cell science 2003;116;Pt 24;4985-95

  • A core function for p120-catenin in cadherin turnover.

    Davis MA, Ireton RC and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37232-6840, USA.

    p120-catenin stabilizes epithelial cadherin (E-cadherin) in SW48 cells, but the mechanism has not been established. Here, we show that p120 acts at the cell surface to control cadherin turnover, thereby regulating cadherin levels. p120 knockdown by siRNA expression resulted in dose-dependent elimination of epithelial, placental, neuronal, and vascular endothelial cadherins, and complete loss of cell-cell adhesion. ARVCF and delta-catenin were functionally redundant, suggesting that proper cadherin-dependent adhesion requires the presence of at least one p120 family member. The data reveal a core function of p120 in cadherin complexes, and strongly predict a dose-dependent loss of E-cadherin in tumors that partially or completely down-regulate p120.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 1P50 CA95103, CA55724, CA69485, P50 CA095103, R01 CA055724

    The Journal of cell biology 2003;163;3;525-34

  • Cellular levels of p120 catenin function as a set point for cadherin expression levels in microvascular endothelial cells.

    Xiao K, Allison DF, Buckley KM, Kottke MD, Vincent PA, Faundez V and Kowalczyk AP

    Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.

    The mechanisms by which catenins regulate cadherin function are not fully understood, and the precise function of p120 catenin (p120ctn) has remained particularly elusive. In microvascular endothelial cells, p120ctn colocalized extensively with cell surface VE-cadherin, but failed to colocalize with VE-cadherin that had entered intracellular degradative compartments. To test the possibility that p120ctn binding to VE-cadherin regulates VE-cadherin internalization, a series of approaches were undertaken to manipulate p120ctn availability to endogenous VE-cadherin. Expression of VE-cadherin mutants that competed for p120ctn binding triggered the degradation of endogenous VE-cadherin. Similarly, reducing levels of p120ctn using siRNA caused a dramatic and dose-related reduction in cellular levels of VE-cadherin. In contrast, overexpression of p120ctn increased VE-cadherin cell surface levels and inhibited entry of cell surface VE-cadherin into degradative compartments. These results demonstrate that cellular levels of p120ctn function as a set point mechanism that regulates cadherin expression levels, and that a major function of p120ctn is to control cadherin internalization and degradation.

    Funded by: NIAMS NIH HHS: 1R01AR048266, P30 AR042687, P30AR042687, R01 AR048266

    The Journal of cell biology 2003;163;3;535-45

  • Adhesion-associated and PKC-modulated changes in serine/threonine phosphorylation of p120-catenin.

    Xia X, Mariner DJ and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University, PRBII 771, Nashville, Tennessee 37232-6840, USA.

    p120-catenin (p120) was originally identified as a tyrosine kinase substrate, and subsequently shown to regulate cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion. Binding of the p120 Arm domain to E-cadherin appears to be necessary to maintain adequate cadherin levels for strong adhesion. In contrast, the sequence amino-terminal to the Arm domain confers a negative regulatory function that is likely to be modulated by phosphorylation. Several agents that induce rapid changes in cell-cell adhesion, including PDBu, histamine, thrombin, and LPA, result in significant changes in p120 S/T phosphorylation. In some cases, these changes are PKC-dependent, but the relationship among adhesion, PKC activation, and p120 phosphorylation is unclear, in part because the relevant p120 phosphorylation sites are unknown. As a crucial step toward directly identifying the function of these modifications in adhesion, we have used two-dimensional tryptic mapping and site-directed mutagenesis to pinpoint the constitutive and PKC-modulated sites of p120 S/T phosphorylation. Of eight sites that have been identified, two were selectively phosphorylated in vitro by GSK3 beta, but in vivo treatment of cells with GSK3 beta inhibitors did not eliminate these sites. PKC stimulation in vivo induced potent dephosphorylation at S268, and partial dephosphorylation of several additional sites. Surprisingly, PKC also strongly induced phosphorylation at S873. These data directly link PKC activation to specific changes in p120 phosphorylation, and identify the target sites associated with the mechanism of PKC-dependent adhesive changes induced by agents such as histamine and PDBu.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, CA68684-06

    Biochemistry 2003;42;30;9195-204

  • Protein kinase C modifications of VE-cadherin, p120, and beta-catenin contribute to endothelial barrier dysregulation induced by thrombin.

    Konstantoulaki M, Kouklis P and Malik AB

    Department of Pharmacology, University of Illinois, Chicago, IL 60612, USA.

    The adherens junction is a multiprotein complex consisting of the transmembrane vascular endothelial cadherin (VEC) and cytoplasmic catenins (p120, beta-catenin, plakoglobin, alpha-catenin) responsible for the maintenance of endothelial barrier function. Junctional disassembly and modifications in cadherin/catenin complex lead to increased paracellular permeability of the endothelial barrier. However, the mechanisms of junctional disassembly remain unclear. In this study, we used the proinflammatory mediator thrombin to compromise the barrier function and test the hypothesis that phosphorylation-induced alterations of VEC, beta-catenin, and p120 regulate junction disassembly and mediate the increased endothelial permeability response. The study showed that thrombin induced dephosphorylation of VEC, which is coupled to disassembly of cell-cell contacts, but VEC remained in aggregates at the plasma membrane. The cytoplasmic catenins dissociated from the VEC cytoplasmic domain in thin membrane projections formed in interendothelial gaps. We also showed that thrombin induced dephosphorylation of beta-catenin and phosphorylation of p120. Thrombin-induced interendothelial gap formation and increased endothelial permeability were blocked by protein kinase C inhibition using chelerythrine and Gö-6976 but not by LY-379196. Chelerythrine also prevented thrombin-induced phosphorylation changes of the cadherin/catenin complex. Thus the present study links posttranslational modifications of VEC, beta-catenin, and p120 to the mechanism of thrombin-induced increase in endothelial permeability.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-20352

    American journal of physiology. Lung cellular and molecular physiology 2003;285;2;L434-42

  • Characterization of cadherin-24, a novel alternatively spliced type II cadherin.

    Katafiasz BJ, Nieman MT, Wheelock MJ and Johnson KR

    University of Nebraska Medical Center, Department of Oral Biology, College of Dentistry and Eppley Cancer Center, Omaha, Nebraska 68198, USA.

    Cadherins comprise a superfamily of calcium-dependent cell-cell adhesion molecules. Within the superfamily are six subfamilies including type I and type II cadherins. Both type I and type II cadherins are composed of five extracellular repeat domains with conserved calcium-binding motifs, a single pass transmembrane domain, and a highly conserved cytoplasmic domain that interacts with beta-catenin and p120 catenin. In this study, we describe a novel cadherin, cadherin-24. It is a type II cadherin with a 781-codon open reading frame, which encodes a type II cadherin protein complete with five extracellular repeats containing calcium-binding motifs, a transmembrane domain, and a conserved cytoplasmic domain. Cadherin-24 has the unusual feature of being alternatively spliced in extracellular repeat 4. This alternative exon encodes 38 in-frame amino acids, resulting in an 819-amino-acid protein. Sequence analysis suggests the presence of beta-catenin and p120 catenin-binding sequences, and immunoprecipitation experiments confirm the ability of both forms of the novel cadherin to associate with alpha-catenin, beta-catenin, and p120 catenin. In addition, aggregation assays show that both forms of cadherin-24 mediate strong cell-cell adhesion.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM51188

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;30;27513-9

  • Dual regulation of neuronal morphogenesis by a delta-catenin-cortactin complex and Rho.

    Martinez MC, Ochiishi T, Majewski M and Kosik KS

    Dept. of Neurology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Harvard Institute of Medicine, 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

    Delta-catenin is a neuronal protein that contains 10 Armadillo motifs and binds to the juxtamembrane segment of classical cadherins. We report that delta-catenin interacts with cortactin in a tyrosine phosphorylation-dependent manner. This interaction occurs within a region of the delta-catenin sequence that is also essential for the neurite elongation effects. Src family kinases can phosphorylate delta-catenin and bind to delta-catenin through its polyproline tract. Under conditions when tyrosine phosphorylation is reduced, delta-catenin binds to cortactin and cells extend unbranched primary processes. Conversely, increasing tyrosine phosphorylation disrupts the delta-catenin-cortactin complex. When RhoA is inhibited, delta-catenin enhances the effects of Rho inhibition on branching. We conclude that delta-catenin contributes to setting a balance between neurite elongation and branching in the elaboration of a complex dendritic tree.

    The Journal of cell biology 2003;162;1;99-111

  • N-cadherin-catenin complexes form prior to cleavage of the proregion and transport to the plasma membrane.

    Wahl JK, Kim YJ, Cullen JM, Johnson KR and Wheelock MJ

    University of Nebraska Medical Center, College of Dentistry and Eppley Cancer Center, Omaha, Nebraska 68198-7696, USA. Jwahl@unmc.edu

    Cadherins are calcium-dependent glycoproteins that function as cell-cell adhesion molecules and are linked to the actin cytoskeleton via catenins. Newly synthesized cadherins contain a prosequence that must be proteolytically removed to generate a functional adhesion molecule. The goal of this study was to examine the proteolytic processing of N-cadherin and the assembly of the cadherin-catenin complex in cells that express endogenous N-cadherin. A monoclonal antibody specific for the proregion of human N-cadherin was generated and used to examine N-cadherin processing. Our data show that newly synthesized proN-cadherin is phosphorylated and proteolytically processed prior to transport to the plasma membrane. In addition, we show that beta-catenin and plakoglobin associate only with phosphorylated proN-cadherin, whereas p120(ctn) can associate with both phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated proN-cadherin. Immunoprecipitations using anti-proN-cadherin showed that cadherin-catenin complexes are assembled prior to localization at the plasma membrane. These data suggest that a core N-cadherin-catenin complex assembles in the endoplasmic reticulum or Golgi compartment and is transported to the plasma membrane where linkage to the actin cytoskeleton can be established.

    Funded by: NIDCR NIH HHS: DE12308; NIGMS NIH HHS: GM51188

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;19;17269-76

  • Defining desmosomal plakophilin-3 interactions.

    Bonné S, Gilbert B, Hatzfeld M, Chen X, Green KJ and van Roy F

    Molecular Cell Biology Unit, Department for Molecular Biomedical Research, Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology (VIB)-Ghent University, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium.

    Plakophilin 3 (PKP3) is a recently described armadillo protein of the desmosomal plaque, which is synthesized in simple and stratified epithelia. We investigated the localization pattern of endogenous and exogenous PKP3 and fragments thereof. The desmosomal binding properties of PKP3 were determined using yeast two-hybrid, coimmunoprecipitation and colocalization experiments. To this end, novel mouse anti-PKP3 mAbs were generated. We found that PKP3 binds all three desmogleins, desmocollin (Dsc) 3a and -3b, and possibly also Dsc1a and -2a. As such, this is the first protein interaction ever observed with a Dsc-b isoform. Moreover, we determined that PKP3 interacts with plakoglobin, desmoplakin (DP) and the epithelial keratin 18. Evidence was found for the presence of at least two DP-PKP3 interaction sites. This finding might explain how lateral DP-PKP interactions are established in the upper layers of stratified epithelia, increasing the size of the desmosome and the number of anchoring points available for keratins. Together, these results show that PKP3, whose epithelial and epidermal desmosomal expression pattern and protein interaction repertoire are broader than those of PKP1 and -2, is a unique multiprotein binding element in the basic architecture of a vast majority of epithelial desmosomes.

    Funded by: NIAMS NIH HHS: AR41836, AR43380, R01 AR041836, R01 AR043380, R37 AR043380; NIDCR NIH HHS: P01 DE012328, P01 DE12328

    The Journal of cell biology 2003;161;2;403-16

  • p120 Catenin-associated Fer and Fyn tyrosine kinases regulate beta-catenin Tyr-142 phosphorylation and beta-catenin-alpha-catenin Interaction.

    Piedra J, Miravet S, Castaño J, Pálmer HG, Heisterkamp N, García de Herreros A and Duñach M

    Unitat de Biofísica, Departament de Bioquímica i Biologia Molecular, Facultat de Medicina, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, E-08193 Bellaterra, Spain.

    beta-Catenin has a key role in the formation of adherens junction through its interactions with E-cadherin and alpha-catenin. We show here that interaction of beta-catenin with alpha-catenin is regulated by the phosphorylation of beta-catenin Tyr-142. This residue can be phosphorylated in vitro by Fer or Fyn tyrosine kinases. Transfection of these kinases to epithelial cells disrupted the association between both catenins. We have also examined whether these kinases are involved in the regulation of this interaction by K-ras. Stable transfectants of the K-ras oncogene in intestinal epithelial IEC18 cells were generated which show little alpha-catenin-beta-catenin association with respect to control clones; this effect is accompanied by increased Tyr-142 phosphorylation and activation of Fer and Fyn kinases. As reported for Fer, Fyn kinase is constitutively bound to p120 catenin; expression of K-ras induces the phosphorylation of p120 catenin on tyrosine residues increasing its affinity for E-cadherin and, consequently, promotes the association of Fyn with the adherens junction complex. Yes tyrosine kinase also binds to p120 catenin but only upon activation, and stimulates Fer and Fyn tyrosine kinases. These results indicate that p120 catenin acts as a docking protein facilitating the activation of Fer/Fyn tyrosine kinases by Yes and demonstrate the role of these p120 catenin-associated kinases in the regulation of beta-catenin-alpha-catenin interaction.

    Molecular and cellular biology 2003;23;7;2287-97

  • Up-regulation, nuclear import, and tumor growth stimulation of the adhesion protein p120 in pancreatic cancer.

    Mayerle J, Friess H, Büchler MW, Schnekenburger J, Weiss FU, Zimmer KP, Domschke W and Lerch MM

    Department of Medicine B, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany.

    Cell adhesion proteins have been implicated as tumor suppressors because they prevent malignant cells from dissociating their cell contacts. We have studied the role of p120(ctn), a recently discovered member of the cadherin/catenin family, in human pancreatic cancer.

    Methods: In 32 resection specimens of pancreatic adenocarcinoma and 10 control samples the expression of p120(ctn) was studied by Northern blot, immunocytochemistry, and immunogold electron microscopy. Patient survival data, tumor grading, and staging were correlated to the experimental results. In PaTu 8889 T pancreatic cancer cells, p120(ctn) expression was suppressed with 21-nucleotide small interfering RNA (siRNA) duplexes and proliferation was determined by bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation.

    Results: In pancreatic cancer p120(ctn) messenger RNA (mRNA) was increased 3- to 4-fold. Although p120(ctn) was localized exclusively at cell contacts in controls it was found in the cytosol and nucleus of pancreatic cancer cells. This redistribution correlated to the degree of tumor dedifferentiation but was independent of tumor stage. The mean survival of patients with predominant membrane localization of p120(ctn) was 24 +/- 7 (SEM) months vs. 9 +/- 2 months for patients with predominant cytoplasmic p120(ctn) expression (P < 0.05). Silencing of p120(ctn) with siRNA duplexes reduced pancreatic cancer cell growth by 40%.

    Conclusions: Up-regulation, cytoplasmic redistribution, and nuclear import of p120(ctn) are associated with a more malignant phenotype of pancreatic cancer. This study further represents conclusive evidence for a direct involvement of p120(ctn) in malignant tumor cell proliferation. Both p120(ctn)-defective tumor cell contacts and p120(ctn)-mediated growth signals appear to contribute to the aggressive spread of pancreatic cancer.

    Gastroenterology 2003;124;4;949-60

  • Altered expression of the catenin p120 in human cancer: implications for tumor progression.

    Thoreson MA and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232-2175, USA.

    Tumor progression in epithelial tissues is characterized by a series of genetic and epigenetic changes that lead ultimately to metastasis. Alterations in E-cadherin and its cytoplasmic regulators, the catenins, have been implicated as central to this process. Here, we focus on p120-catenin and its rising incidence in the pathology literature as a molecule altered in human tumors. The data show that p120 is frequently altered and/or lost in tumors of the colon, bladder, stomach, breast, prostate, lung, and pancreas. Moreover, in some cases p120 loss appears to be an early event in tumor progression, possibly preceding loss of E-cadherin. Potential roles of p120 as a tumor suppressor or metastasis promoter are discussed.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA 55724

    Differentiation; research in biological diversity 2002;70;9-10;583-9

  • A novel role for p120 catenin in E-cadherin function.

    Ireton RC, Davis MA, van Hengel J, Mariner DJ, Barnes K, Thoreson MA, Anastasiadis PZ, Matrisian L, Bundy LM, Sealy L, Gilbert B, van Roy F and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232, USA.

    Indirect evidence suggests that p120-catenin (p120) can both positively and negatively affect cadherin adhesiveness. Here we show that the p120 gene is mutated in SW48 cells, and that the cadherin adhesion system is impaired as a direct consequence of p120 insufficiency. Restoring normal levels of p120 caused a striking reversion from poorly differentiated to cobblestone-like epithelial morphology, indicating a crucial role for p120 in reactivation of E-cadherin function. The rescue efficiency was enhanced by increased levels of p120, and reduced by the presence of the phosphorylation domain, a region previously postulated to confer negative regulation. Surprisingly, the rescue was associated with substantially increased levels of E-cadherin. E-cadherin mRNA levels were unaffected by p120 expression, but E-cadherin half-life was more than doubled. Direct p120-E-cadherin interaction was crucial, as p120 deletion analysis revealed a perfect correlation between E-cadherin binding and rescue of epithelial morphology. Interestingly, the epithelial morphology could also be rescued by forced expression of either WT E-cadherin or a p120-uncoupled mutant. Thus, the effects of uncoupling p120 from E-cadherin can be at least partially overcome by artificially maintaining high levels of cadherin expression. These data reveal a cooperative interaction between p120 and E-cadherin and a novel role for p120 that is likely indispensable in normal cells.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA 55724, CA 68684-06, R01 CA055724

    The Journal of cell biology 2002;159;3;465-76

  • The transmembrane receptor protein tyrosine phosphatase DEP1 interacts with p120(ctn).

    Holsinger LJ, Ward K, Duffield B, Zachwieja J and Jallal B

    SUGEN Inc., 230 East Grand Avenue, South San Francisco, California, CA 94080, USA. leslie-holsinger@sugen.com

    The receptor-like protein tyrosine phosphatase DEP1, also known as CD148, is expressed predominantly in epithelial cells, in a variety of tumor cell lines, and in lymphocytes. Expression of DEP1 is enhanced at high cell density, and this observation suggests that DEP1 may function in the regulation of cell adhesion and possibly contact inhibition of cell growth. In order to investigate the function of DEP1, substrate-trapping mutants of the phosphatase were used to identify potential substrates. GST-fusion proteins containing the DEP1 catalytic domain with a substrate-trapping D/A mutation were found to interact with p120(ctn), a component of adherens junctions. DEP1 also interacted with other members of the catenin gene family including beta-catenin and gamma-catenin. The interaction with p120(ctn) is likely to be direct, as the interaction occurs in K562 cells lacking functional adherens junctions and E-cadherin expression. Catalytic domains of the tyrosine phosphatases PTP-PEST, CD45, and PTPbeta did not interact with proteins of the catenin family to detectable levels, suggesting that the interaction of DEP1 with these proteins is specific. DEP1 expression was concentrated at sites of cell-cell contact in A549 cells. p120(ctn) was found to colocalize with these structures. Together these data suggest an important role for DEP-1 in the function of cell-cell contacts and adherens junctions.

    Oncogene 2002;21;46;7067-76

  • Recruitment of the kainate receptor subunit glutamate receptor 6 by cadherin/catenin complexes.

    Coussen F, Normand E, Marchal C, Costet P, Choquet D, Lambert M, Mège RM and Mulle C

    Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique Unité Mixte de Recherche 5091, Institut François Magendie, Paris 75005, France.

    Kainate receptors modulate synaptic transmission by acting either at presynaptic or at postsynaptic sites. The precise localization of kainate receptors as well as the mechanisms of targeting and stabilization of these receptors in neurons are largely unknown. We have generated transgenic mice expressing the kainate receptor subunit glutamate receptor 6 (GluR6) bearing an extracellular myc epitope (myc-GluR6), in forebrain neurons, in which it assembles with endogenous kainate receptor subunits. In transgenic mice crossed with GluR6-deficient mice, myc-GluR6 efficiently rescues the missing subunit. Immunoprecipitation of transgenic brain extracts with anti-myc antibodies demonstrates an interaction with cadherins, beta-catenin, and p120 catenin, as well as with the associated proteins calcium calmodulin-dependent serine kinase and Velis, but not with alpha-catenin. In glutathione S-transferase-pulldown experiments, beta-catenin interacts, although indirectly, with the last 14 aa of GluR6. Transfected myc-GluR6 colocalizes with beta-catenin at cell-cell junctions in non-neuronal cells. Finally, activation of N-cadherins by ligand-covered latex beads recruits GluR6 to cadherin/catenin complexes. These results suggest an important role for cadherin/catenin complexes in the stabilization of kainate receptors at the synaptic membrane during synapse formation and remodeling.

    The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience 2002;22;15;6426-36

  • Expression analysis of delta-catenin and prostate-specific membrane antigen: their potential as diagnostic markers for prostate cancer.

    Burger MJ, Tebay MA, Keith PA, Samaratunga HM, Clements J, Lavin MF and Gardiner RA

    Queensland Institute of Medical Research, PO Royal Brisbane Hospital, Herston, Brisbane, Australia.

    The current approach to prostate cancer diagnosis has major limitations including the inability of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) assays to accurately differentiate between prostate cancer and benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) and the imprecision of transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) biopsy sampling. We have employed cDNA microarray screening to compare gene expression patterns in BPH and tumour samples to identify expression markers that may be useful in discriminating between these conditions. Screening of 3 individual cDNA arrays identified 8 genes with expression 3-fold greater in 6 tumour tissues than in 1 nontumour sample and 1 BPH sample. Real-time PCR was used to confirm the overexpression of these 8 genes and 12 genes selected from the literature against a panel of 17 tumours and 11 BPH samples. Two genes, delta-catenin (delta-catenin; CTNND2) and prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA; FOLH1), were significantly overexpressed in prostate cancer compared to BPH. Prostate epithelial cells stained positively for delta-catenin and PSMA in our prostate cancer tissues, whereas the majority of our BPH tissues were negative for both markers. Thus we have identified delta-catenin (not previously associated with prostatic adenocarcinoma) and confirmed the potential of PSMA as potential candidates for the diagnosis and management of prostate cancer.

    International journal of cancer 2002;100;2;228-37

  • Dendrite-like process formation and cytoskeletal remodeling regulated by delta-catenin expression.

    Kim K, Sirota A, Chen Yh YH, Jones SB, Dudek R, Lanford GW, Thakore C and Lu Q

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, The Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina 27858, USA.

    Actin- and microtubule-mediated changes in cell shape are essential for many cellular activities. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the interplay between the two are complex and remain obscure. Here we show that the expression of delta-catenin (or NPRAP/Neurojungin), a member of p120(ctn) subfamily of armadillo proteins can induce the branching of dendrite-like processes in 3T3 cells and enhance dendritic morphogenesis in primary hippocampal neurons. This induction of branching phenotype involves initially the disruption of filamentous actin, and requires the growth of microtubules. The carboxyl-terminal truncation mutant of delta-catenin can cluster and redistribute the full-length protein, and dominantly inhibit its branching effect. delta-Catenin forms protein complexes and can bind directly to actin in vitro. The carboxyl-terminal truncation of delta-catenin does not interfere with its actin-binding capability; therefore the actin interaction alone is not sufficient for the induction of dendrite-like processes. When delta-catenin-transformed cells establish elaborate dendrite-like branches, the main cellular processes become stabilized and resist the disruption of both actin filaments and microtubules, as determined by fluorescent light microscopy and time-lapse recording analyses. We suggest that delta-catenin can effect a biphasic cytoskeletal remodeling event which differentially regulates actin and microtubules and promotes cellular morphogenesis.

    Funded by: NEI NIH HHS: EY09721

    Experimental cell research 2002;275;2;171-84

  • The Erbin PDZ domain binds with high affinity and specificity to the carboxyl termini of delta-catenin and ARVCF.

    Laura RP, Witt AS, Held HA, Gerstner R, Deshayes K, Koehler MF, Kosik KS, Sidhu SS and Lasky LA

    Department of Molecular Oncology, Genentech, Inc., 1 DNA Way, South San Francisco, California 94080, USA.

    Erbin is a recently described member of the LAP (leucine-rich repeat and PDZ domain) protein family. We used a C-terminally displayed phage peptide library to identify optimal ligands for the Erbin PDZ domain. Phage-selected peptides were type 1 PDZ ligands that bound with high affinity and specificity to the Erbin PDZ domain in vitro. These peptides most closely resembled the C-terminal PDZ domain-binding motifs of three p120-related catenins: delta-catenin, ARVCF, and p0071 (DSWV-COOH). Analysis of the interactions of the Erbin PDZ domain with synthetic peptides matching the C termini of ARVCF or delta-catenin also demonstrated specific high affinity binding. We characterized the interactions between the Erbin PDZ domain and both ARVCF and delta-catenin in vitro and in vivo. The Erbin PDZ domain co-localized and coprecipitated with ARVCF or delta-catenin complexed with beta-catenin and E/N-cadherin. Mutagenesis and peptide competition experiments showed that the association of Erbin with the cadherin-catenin complex was mediated by the interaction of its PDZ domain with the C-terminal PDZ domain-binding motifs (DSWV-COOH) of ARVCF and delta-catenin. Finally, we showed that endogenous delta-catenin and Erbin co-localized in and co-immunoprecipitated from neurons. These results suggest that delta-catenin and ARVCF may function to mediate the association of Erbin with the junctional cadherin-catenin complex. They also demonstrate that C-terminal phage-display technology can be used to predict physiologically relevant ligands for PDZ domains.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;15;12906-14

  • An octapeptide in the juxtamembrane domain of VE-cadherin is important for p120ctn binding and cell proliferation.

    Ferber A, Yaen C, Sarmiento E and Martinez J

    Cardeza Foundation for Hematological Research, Department of Medicine, Jefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107-5099, USA. andres.ferber@mail.tju.edu

    The cadherins are a family of adhesive proteins involved in cell-cell homophilic interactions. VE-cadherin, expressed in endothelial cells, is involved in morphogenesis, regulation of permeability, and cellular proliferation. The cytoplasmic tails of cadherins contain two major domains, the juxtamembrane domain that plays a role in the intercellular localization of the protein and also serves for binding of p120ctn, and a C-terminal domain that associates with beta- or gamma-catenin. A highly conserved region present in the juxtamembrane domain of the cadherins has been shown to be necessary for p120ctn binding in E-cadherin. Using a mutant VE-cadherin lacking a highly conserved octapeptide, we demonstrated that it is required for p120ctn binding to VE-cadherin as determined by immunoprecipitation and colocalization studies. By immunofluorescence, this mutant protein has a topographical distribution similar to that of the wild-type VE-cadherin and, therefore, we conclude that the topographical distribution of VE-cadherin is independent of this motif. In addition, although cell-cell association is present in cells expressing this mutant form of VE-cadherin, we found that the strength of adhesion is decreased. Finally, our results for the first time demonstrate that the interaction of VE-cadherin with p120 catenin plays an important role in cellular growth, suggesting that the binding of p120 catenin to cadherins may regulate cell proliferation.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: K01 HL67707-01, R01 HL59227-01A1

    Experimental cell research 2002;274;1;35-44

  • Expression and interaction of different catenins in colorectal carcinoma cells.

    Kucerová D, Sloncová E, Tuhácková Z, Vojtechová M and Sovová V

    Institute of Molecular Genetics, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, 166 37 Praha 6, Czech Republic.

    Aberrant signalling activities of beta-catenin, originally identified as a component of cell-adhesion complexes, are now considered to be an important factor in colorectal carcinogenesis. However, recently it was shown that also gamma- as well as p120 catenins have a dual role either in cell adhesion or in affecting some gene activation. Therefore, the levels and interactions of these three catenins in human colorectal carcinoma cell lines were analysed. A great heterogeneity in the expression of all catenins tested was found in colorectal carcinoma cell lines HT29 and LS174T. Detailed analysis of beta-catenin interactions was done. GST-APC fragment-fused proteins were used to absorb beta-catenin and its complexes from cell lysates. Similarly, the E-cadherin binding capacity of the residual pool of beta-catenin was analysed using the GST-ECT construct. It was found that the level of beta-catenin does not necessarily depend either on the APC or beta-catenin gene mutations and that co-precipitation of beta-, gamma-, and p120 catenins is not limited to cells that express E-cadherin.

    International journal of molecular medicine 2001;8;6;695-8

  • Identification of Src phosphorylation sites in the catenin p120ctn.

    Mariner DJ, Anastasiadis P, Keilhack H, Böhmer FD, Wang J and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cancer Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee 37232-2175, USA.

    p120-catenin (p120(ctn)) interacts with the cytoplasmic tail of cadherins and is thought to regulate cadherin clustering during formation of adherens junctions. Several observations suggest that p120 can both positively and negatively regulate cadherin adhesiveness depending on signals that so far remain unidentified. Although p120 tyrosine phosphorylation is a leading candidate, the role of this modification in normal and Src-transformed cells remains unknown. Here, as a first step toward pinpointing this role, we have employed two-dimensional tryptic mapping to directly identify the major sites of Src-induced p120 phosphorylation. Eight sites were identified by direct mutation of candidate tyrosines to phenylalanine and elimination of the accompanying spots on the two-dimensional maps. Identical sites were observed in vitro and in vivo, strongly suggesting that the physiologically important sites have been correctly identified. Changing all of these sites to phenylalanine resulted in a p120 mutant, p120-8F, that could not be efficiently phosphorylated by Src and failed to interact with SHP-1, a tyrosine phosphatase shown previously to interact selectively with tyrosine-phosphorylated p120 in cells stimulated with epidermal growth factor. Using selected tyrosine to phenylalanine p120 mutants as dominant negative reagents, it may now be possible to selectively block events postulated to be dependent on p120 tyrosine phosphorylation.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, CA69485

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2001;276;30;28006-13

  • alpha-, beta-, gamma-catenin, and p120(CTN) expression during the terminal differentiation and fusion of human mononucleate cytotrophoblasts in vitro and in vivo.

    Getsios S, Chen GT and MacCalman CD

    Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

    The cadherins play key roles in the formation and organization of the mammalian placenta by mediating cellular interactions and the terminal differentiation of trophoblastic cells. Although cadherin function is regulated by the cytoplasmic proteins, known as the catenins, the identity and expression pattern(s) of the catenins present in the trophoblastic cells of the human placenta have not been characterized. In these studies, we have determined that alpha-, beta-, gamma-catenin, and p120(ctn) expression levels are high in villous cytotrophoblasts isolated from the human term placenta but decline as these cells undergo aggregation and fusion to form syncytium with time in culture. In contrast, the expression levels of these four catenin subtypes remained constant in non-fusing JEG-3 choriocarcinoma cells at all of the time points examined in these studies. alpha-, beta-, gamma-catenin, and p120(ctn) expression was further immunolocalized to the mononucleate cells present in these two trophoblastic cell cultures. Similarly, intense immunostaining for all four catenins was detected in the mononucleate villous cytotrophoblasts of the human first trimester placenta. Collectively, these observations demonstrate that the expression levels of alpha-, beta-, gamma-catenin, and p120(ctn) are tightly regulated during the formation of multinucleated syncytium in vitro and in vivo.

    Molecular reproduction and development 2001;59;2;168-77

  • Presenilin-1 binds cytoplasmic epithelial cadherin, inhibits cadherin/p120 association, and regulates stability and function of the cadherin/catenin adhesion complex.

    Baki L, Marambaud P, Efthimiopoulos S, Georgakopoulos A, Wen P, Cui W, Shioi J, Koo E, Ozawa M, Friedrich VL and Robakis NK

    Department of Psychiatry, Fishberg Research Center for Neurobiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, One Gustave Levy Place, New York, NY 10029, USA.

    Here we show that presenilin-1 (PS1), a protein involved in Alzheimer's disease, binds directly to epithelial cadherin (E-cadherin). This binding is mediated by the large cytoplasmic loop of PS1 and requires the membrane-proximal cytoplasmic sequence 604-615 of mature E-cadherin. This sequence is also required for E-cadherin binding of protein p120, a known regulator of cadherin-mediated cell adhesion. Using wild-type and PS1 knockout cells, we found that increasing PS1 levels suppresses p120/E-cadherin binding, and increasing p120 levels suppresses PS1/E-cadherin binding. Thus PS1 and p120 bind to and mutually compete for cellular E-cadherin. Furthermore, PS1 stimulates E-cadherin binding to beta- and gamma-catenin, promotes cytoskeletal association of the cadherin/catenin complexes, and increases Ca(2+)-dependent cell-cell aggregation. Remarkably, PS1 familial Alzheimer disease mutant DeltaE9 increased neither the levels of cadherin/catenin complexes nor cell aggregation, suggesting that this familial Alzheimer disease mutation interferes with cadherin-based cell-cell adhesion. These data identify PS1 as an E-cadherin-binding protein and a regulator of E-cadherin function in vivo.

    Funded by: NIA NIH HHS: AG-05138, AG-08200, AG-17926, P50 AG005138, R01 AG008200, R01 AG017926, R37 AG017926

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2001;98;5;2381-6

  • The Human DF3/MUC1 carcinoma-associated antigen signals nuclear localization of the catenin p120(ctn).

    Li Y and Kufe D

    Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.

    The human DF3/MUC1 glycoprotein is aberrantly overexpressed by carcinoma cells. The present studies show that MUC1 associates with the Armadillo protein, p120(ctn). The cytoplasmic domain of MUC1 binds directly to p120. The functional significance of the MUC1-p120 association is supported by the demonstration that MUC1 induces nuclear localization of p120. These findings demonstrate that MUC1 confers cell membrane to nuclear signaling by interactions with p120.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA87421

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2001;281;2;440-3

  • The protein-tyrosine phosphatase SHP-1 binds to and dephosphorylates p120 catenin.

    Keilhack H, Hellman U, van Hengel J, van Roy F, Godovac-Zimmermann J and Böhmer FD

    Research Unit "Molecular Cell Biology," Klinikum der Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Drackendorfer Strasse 1, D-07747 Jena, Germany.

    A prominent tyrosine-phosphorylated protein of approximately 100 kDa (designated pp100) in epidermal growth factor (EGF)-stimulated A431 cells was found to be a main interaction partner of the protein-tyrosine phosphatase SHP-1 in pull-down experiments with a glutathione S-transferase-SHP-1 fusion protein. Binding was largely mediated by the N-terminal SH2 domain of SHP-1 and apparently direct and independent from the previously described association of SHP-1 with the activated EGF receptor. pp100 was partially purified and identified by mass spectrometric analysis of tryptic fragments, partial amino acid sequencing, and use of authentic antibodies as the 3A isoform of the Armadillo repeat protein superfamily member p120 catenin (p120(ctn)). Different p120(ctn) isoforms expressed in human embryonal kidney 293 cells, exhibited differential binding to SHP-1 that correlated partly with the extent of EGF-dependent p120(ctn) tyrosine phosphorylation. Despite strong phosphorylation, p120(ctn) isoforms 3B and 3AB bound, however, less readily to SHP-1. SHP-1 associated transiently with p120(ctn) in EGF-stimulated A431 cells stably transfected with a tetracycline-responsive SHP-1 expression construct, and p120(ctn) exhibited elevated phosphorylation upon a tetracycline-mediated decrease in the SHP-1 level. Functions of p120(ctn), which are regulated by tyrosine phosphorylation, may be modulated by the described SHP-1-p120(ctn) interaction.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2000;275;34;26376-84

  • E-cadherin-catenin cell-cell adhesion complex and human cancer.

    Wijnhoven BP, Dinjens WN and Pignatelli M

    Departments of Surgery and Pathology, Erasmus University Medical Centre, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

    Background: The E-cadherin-catenin complex plays a crucial role in epithelial cell-cell adhesion and in the maintenance of tissue architecture. Perturbation in the expression or function of this complex results in loss of intercellular adhesion, with possible consequent cell transformation and tumour progression. Recently, much progress has been made in understanding the interaction between the different components of this protein complex and how this cell-cell adhesion complex is modulated in cancer cells.

    Methods: This is an update of the role of the E-cadherin-catenin complex in human cancers. It emphasizes new features and the possible role of the complex in clinical practice, discussed in the light of 165 references obtained from the Medline database from 1995 to 1999.

    Results: More evidence is now appearing to suggest that disturbance in protein-protein interaction in the E-cadherin-catenin adhesion complex is one of the main events in the early and late steps of cancer development. An inverse correlation is found between expression of the E-cadherin-catenin complex and the invasive behaviour of tumour cells. Therefore, E-cadherin-catenin may become a significant prognostic marker for tumour behaviour. Besides its role in establishing tight cell-cell adhesion, beta- catenin plays a major role in cell signalling and promotion of neoplastic growth. This suggests its dual role as a tumour suppressor and as an oncogene in human cancers.

    Conclusion: Recent developments show that the E-cadherin-catenin complex is more than a 'sticky molecular complex'. Further studies may yield greater insight into the early molecular interactions critical to the initiation and progression of tumours. This should aid the development of novel strategies for both prevention and treatment of cancer.

    The British journal of surgery 2000;87;8;992-1005

  • Receptor protein-tyrosine phosphatase RPTPmu binds to and dephosphorylates the catenin p120(ctn).

    Zondag GC, Reynolds AB and Moolenaar WH

    Division of Cellular Biochemistry, Netherlands Cancer Institute, Plesmanlaan 121, 1066 CX Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

    RPTPmu is a prototypic receptor-like protein-tyrosine phosphatase (RPTP) that mediates homotypic cell-cell interactions. Intracellularly, RPTPmu consists of a relatively large juxtamembrane region and two phosphatase domains, but little is still known about its substrate(s). Here we show that RPTPmu associates with the catenin p120(ctn), a tyrosine kinase substrate and an interacting partner of cadherins. No interaction is detectable between RPTPmu and beta-catenin. Furthermore, we show that tyrosine-phosphorylated p120(ctn) is dephosphorylated by RPTPmu both in vitro and in intact cells. Complex formation between RPTPmu and p120(ctn) does not require tyrosine phosphorylation of p120(ctn). Mutational analysis reveals that both the juxtamembrane region and the second phosphatase domain of RPTPmu are involved in p120(ctn) binding. The RPTPmu-interacting domain of p120(ctn) maps to its unique N terminus, a region distinct from the cadherin-interacting domain. A mutant form of p120(ctn) that fails to bind cadherins can still associate with RPTPmu. Our findings indicate that RPTPmu interacts with p120(ctn) independently of cadherins, and they suggest that this interaction may serve to control the tyrosine phosphorylation state of p120(ctn) at sites of cell-cell contact.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2000;275;15;11264-9

  • Selective uncoupling of p120(ctn) from E-cadherin disrupts strong adhesion.

    Thoreson MA, Anastasiadis PZ, Daniel JM, Ireton RC, Wheelock MJ, Johnson KR, Hummingbird DK and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cell Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee 37232-2175, USA.

    p120(ctn) is a catenin whose direct binding to the juxtamembrane domain of classical cadherins suggests a role in regulating cell-cell adhesion. The juxtamembrane domain has been implicated in a variety of roles including cadherin clustering, cell motility, and neuronal outgrowth, raising the possibility that p120 mediates these activities. We have generated minimal mutations in this region that uncouple the E-cadherin-p120 interaction, but do not affect interactions with other catenins. By stable transfection into E-cadherin-deficient cell lines, we show that cadherins are both necessary and sufficient for recruitment of p120 to junctions. Detergent-free subcellular fractionation studies indicated that, in contrast to previous reports, the stoichiometry of the interaction is extremely high. Unlike alpha- and beta-catenins, p120 was metabolically stable in cadherin-deficient cells, and was present at high levels in the cytoplasm. Analysis of cells expressing E-cadherin mutant constructs indicated that p120 is required for the E-cadherin-mediated transition from weak to strong adhesion. In aggregation assays, cells expressing p120-uncoupled E-cadherin formed only weak cell aggregates, which immediately dispersed into single cells upon pipetting. As an apparent consequence, the actin cytoskeleton failed to insert properly into peripheral E-cadherin plaques, resulting in the inability to form a continuous circumferential ring around cell colonies. Our data suggest that p120 directly or indirectly regulates the E-cadherin-mediated transition to tight cell-cell adhesion, possibly blocking subsequent events necessary for reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton and compaction.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, CA69485, R01 CA055724

    The Journal of cell biology 2000;148;1;189-202

  • p120(ctn) binds to the membrane-proximal region of the E-cadherin cytoplasmic domain and is involved in modulation of adhesion activity.

    Ohkubo T and Ozawa M

    Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Kagoshima University, Kagoshima 890-8520, Japan.

    Cadherins are transmembrane glycoproteins involved in Ca(2+)-dependent cell-cell adhesion. Previously, we showed that the conserved membrane-proximal region of the E-cadherin cytoplasmic domain negatively regulates adhesion activity. In this report, we provide several lines of evidence that p120(ctn) is involved in this negative regulation. p120(ctn) binds to the membrane-proximal region of the nonfunctional carboxyl-terminally deleted E-cadherin protein. An additional internal deletion in this region prevented the association with p120(ctn) and activated the protein, as seen in an aggregation assay. Furthermore, the nonfunctional E-cadherin can be activated through coexpression of p120(ctn) proteins with amino-terminal deletions, which eliminate several potential serine/threonine phosphorylation sites but do not affect the ability to bind to cadherins. Finally, we show that staurosporine, a kinase inhibitor, induces an increased electrophoretic mobility of p120(ctn) bound to E-cadherin polypeptides, activates the nonfunctional E-cadherin protein, and converts the wild-type E-cadherin and an E-cadherin-alpha-catenin chimeric protein from a cytochalasin D-sensitive to a cytochalasin D-insensitive state. Together, these results indicate that p120(ctn) is a modulator of E-cadherin-mediated cell adhesion.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1999;274;30;21409-15

  • Nuclear localization of the p120(ctn) Armadillo-like catenin is counteracted by a nuclear export signal and by E-cadherin expression.

    van Hengel J, Vanhoenacker P, Staes K and van Roy F

    Molecular Cell Biology Unit, Department of Molecular Biology, Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology (VIB), University of Ghent, Ledeganckstraat 35, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium.

    The Armadillo protein p120(ctn) associates with the cytoplasmic domain of cadherins and accumulates at cell-cell junctions. Particular Armadillo proteins such as beta-catenin and plakophilins show a partly nuclear location, suggesting gene-regulatory activities. For different human E-cadherin-negative carcinoma cancer cell lines we found expression of endogenous p120(ctn) in the nucleus. Expression of E-cadherin directed p120(ctn) out of the nucleus. Previously, we reported that the human p120(ctn) gene might encode up to 32 protein isoforms as products of alternative splicing. Overexpression of p120(ctn) isoforms B in various cell lines resulted in cytoplasmic immunopositivity but never in nuclear staining. In contrast, upon expression of p120(ctn) cDNAs lacking exon B, the isoforms were detectable within both nuclei and cytoplasm. A putative nuclear export signal (NES) with a characteristic leucine-rich motif is encoded by exon B. This sequence element was shown to be required for nuclear export and to function autonomously when fused to a carrier protein and microinjected into cell nuclei. Moreover, the NES function of endogenously or exogenously expressed p120(ctn) isoforms B was sensitive to the nuclear export inhibitor leptomycin B. Expression of exogenous E-cadherin down-regulated nuclear p120(ctn) whereas activation of protein kinase C increased the level of nuclear p120(ctn). These results reveal molecular mechanisms controlling the subcellular distribution of p120(ctn).

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 1999;96;14;7980-5

  • Human p120ctn catenin: tissue-specific expression of isoforms and molecular interactions with BP180/type XVII collagen.

    Aho S, Rothenberger K and Uitto J

    Department of Dermatology, Jefferson Medical College, and Jefferson Institute of Molecular Medicine, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA. aho1@mail.tju.edu

    Catenins, a family of structurally related proteins, are involved in epidermal keratinocyte cell-cell adhesion by interacting through their central Armadillo repeats with the intracellular domains of cadherins, transmembrane components of the adhesion junctions. p120ctn is a catenin expressed in different isoforms due to alternative splicing and multiple translation start sites. BP180 is a collagenous transmembrane protein (type XVII collagen) localized to hemidesmosomal attachment complexes in basal keratinocytes. In this study, we have delineated the molecular interaction between these two proteins utilizing the yeast two-hybrid system, which was confirmed by an in vitro protein-protein interaction assay. Specifically, it was shown that an amino-terminal segment of BP180 (aa. 13-25) contains the information necessary for binding to p120ctn isoforms 1-3, but not to the isoform 4, suggesting that the interacting domain is located immediately upstream from the Armadillo repeats and is encoded by exons 5 and 6, which are subject to alternative splicing only in a minority of transcripts. In addition to epidermal keratinocytes, p120ctn was shown to be expressed in a variety of adult and fetal tissues as well as in a number of human tumors. The expression pattern of various p120ctn transcripts, reflecting alternative splicing of the 5' exons, was strikingly similar between the corresponding adult and fetal tissues, while the expression patterns were discordant between certain tumors and their normal parental tissues, suggesting a functional role for the tissue-specific expression of the p120ctn isoforms. Finally, the tissue-specific expression of BP180 was shown to partially overlap with that of p120ctn, suggesting that the interaction of these two proteins may contribute to the modulation of cell-cell/matrix interactions in such tissues.

    Funded by: NIAMS NIH HHS: P01-AR38923

    Journal of cellular biochemistry 1999;73;3;390-9

  • p120(ctn) acts as an inhibitory regulator of cadherin function in colon carcinoma cells.

    Aono S, Nakagawa S, Reynolds AB and Takeichi M

    Department of Biophysics, Faculty of Science, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan.

    p120(ctn) binds to the cytoplasmic domain of cadherins but its role is poorly understood. Colo 205 cells grow as dispersed cells despite their normal expression of E-cadherin and catenins. However, in these cells we can induce typical E-cadherin-dependent aggregation by treatment with staurosporine or trypsin. These treatments concomitantly induce an electrophoretic mobility shift of p120(ctn) to a faster position. To investigate whether p120(ctn) plays a role in this cadherin reactivation process, we transfected Colo 205 cells with a series of p120(ctn) deletion constructs. Notably, expression of NH2-terminally deleted p120(ctn) induced aggregation. Similar effects were observed when these constructs were introduced into HT-29 cells. When a mutant N-cadherin lacking the p120(ctn)-binding site was introduced into Colo 205 cells, this molecule also induced cell aggregation, indicating that cadherins can function normally if they do not bind to p120(ctn). These findings suggest that in Colo 205 cells, a signaling mechanism exists to modify a biochemical state of p120(ctn) and the modified p120(ctn) blocks the cadherin system. The NH2 terminus-deleted p120(ctn) appears to compete with the endogenous p120(ctn) to abolish the adhesion-blocking action.

    The Journal of cell biology 1999;145;3;551-62

  • The catenin p120(ctn) interacts with Kaiso, a novel BTB/POZ domain zinc finger transcription factor.

    Daniel JM and Reynolds AB

    Department of Cell Biology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee 37232-2175, USA.

    p120(ctn) is an Armadillo repeat domain protein with structural similarity to the cell adhesion cofactors beta-catenin and plakoglobin. All three proteins interact directly with the cytoplasmic domain of the transmembrane cell adhesion molecule E-cadherin; beta-catenin and plakoglobin bind a carboxy-terminal region in a mutually exclusive manner, while p120 binds the juxtamembrane region. Unlike beta-catenin and plakoglobin, p120 does not interact with alpha-catenin, the tumor suppressor adenomatous polyposis coli (APC), or the transcription factor Lef-1, suggesting that it has unique binding partners and plays a distinct role in the cadherin-catenin complex. Using p120 as bait, we conducted a yeast two-hybrid screen and identified a novel transcription factor which we named Kaiso. Kaiso's deduced amino acid sequence revealed an amino-terminal BTB/POZ protein-protein interaction domain and three carboxy-terminal zinc fingers of the C2H2 DNA-binding type. Kaiso thus belongs to a rapidly growing family of POZ-ZF transcription factors that include the Drosophila developmental regulators Tramtrak and Bric à brac, and the human oncoproteins BCL-6 and PLZF, which are causally linked to non-Hodgkins' lymphoma and acute promyelocytic leukemia, respectively. Monoclonal antibodies to Kaiso were generated and used to immunolocalize the protein and confirm the specificity of the p120-Kaiso interaction in mammalian cells. Kaiso specifically coprecipitated with a variety of p120-specific monoclonal antibodies but not with antibodies to alpha- or beta-catenin, E-cadherin, or APC. Like other POZ-ZF proteins, Kaiso localized to the nucleus and was associated with specific nuclear dots. Yeast two-hybrid interaction assays mapped the binding domains to Arm repeats 1 to 7 of p120 and the carboxy-terminal 200 amino acids of Kaiso. In addition, Kaiso homodimerized via its POZ domain but it did not heterodimerize with BCL-6, which heterodimerizes with PLZF. The involvement of POZ-ZF proteins in development and cancer makes Kaiso an interesting candidate for a downstream effector of cadherin and/or p120 signaling.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA 55724, CA 68485, P30 CA068485, R01 CA055724

    Molecular and cellular biology 1999;19;5;3614-23

  • Isolation of human delta-catenin and its binding specificity with presenilin 1.

    Tanahashi H and Tabira T

    Division of Demyelinating Disease and Aging, National Institute of Neuroscience, Kodaira, Tokyo, Japan.

    We screened proteins for interaction with presenilin (PS) 1, and cloned the full-length cDNA of human delta-catenin, which encoded 1225 amino acids. Yeast two-hybrid assay, GST binding assay and immunoprecipitation demonstrated that delta-catenin interacted with a hydrophilic loop region in the endoproteolytic C-terminal fragment of PS1, but not with that of PS-2. These results suggest that PS1 and PS2 partly differ in function. PS1 loop fragment containing the pathogenic mutation retained the binding ability. We also found another armadillo-protein, p0071, interacted with PS1.

    Neuroreport 1999;10;3;563-8

  • Modification of the E-cadherin-catenin complex in mitotic Madin-Darby canine kidney epithelial cells.

    Bauer A, Lickert H, Kemler R and Stappert J

    Department of Molecular Embryology, Max-Planck Institute of Immunobiology, Stübeweg 51, D-79108 Freiburg, Germany.

    One of the hallmarks of polarized epithelial cells undergoing mitosis is their rounded morphology. This phenotype correlates with a reduced cell-substratum adhesion, apparently caused by a modulation of integrin function. However, it is still unclear whether the cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion is affected as well. To address this question, the cadherin complex was analyzed in different cell cycle stages of Madin-Darby canine kidney cells. By immunofluorescence, mitotic Madin-Darby canine kidney cells showed an increased staining of E-cadherin and the catenins (alpha-catenin, beta-catenin, plakoglobin, p120(ctn)) in the cytosol, suggesting a reorganization of the cadherin-catenin complex during mitosis. Biochemical analysis revealed that the overall amount of these components, as well as the proportion of the complex associated with the actin cytoskeleton, remained unchanged in mitotic cells. However, we found evidence for an internalization of E-cadherin during mitosis. In addition, the cadherin-catenin complex was analyzed for mitosis-specific changes in phosphorylation. We report a decrease in the tyrosine phosphorylation of beta-catenin, plakoglobin, and p120(ctn) during mitosis. Moreover, we observed a mitosis-specific Ser/Thr-phosphorylation of p120(ctn), as detected by the MPM-2 antibody. Hence, the cadherin/catenin complex is a target for different posttranslational modifications during mitosis, which may also have a profound impact on cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1998;273;43;28314-21

  • Molecular cloning of the human p120ctn catenin gene (CTNND1): expression of multiple alternatively spliced isoforms.

    Keirsebilck A, Bonné S, Staes K, van Hengel J, Nollet F, Reynolds A and van Roy F

    Department of Molecular Biology, Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology (VIB)-University of Gent, Belgium.

    Catenins were discovered as proteins that are linked to the cytoplasmic domain of transmembrane cadherins. Among these junctional plaque proteins are several members of the Armadillo gene family: beta-catenin, plakoglobin, and p120ctn. Recently it became clear that some catenins also mediate nuclear signaling. We performed a detailed analysis of the human p120ctn gene (HGMW-approved symbol CTNND1) and its transcripts. The human p120ctn gene comprises 21 exons, potentially encoding up to 32 protein isoforms as products of alternative splicing. Human isoforms, designated 1 to 4, differ from each other by the start codon used. Additional isoforms are derived from combinations with alternatively used exons A (exon 18) and B (20), near the end of the open reading frame, and also with exon C (11) in the middle of the open reading frame. Hence, the longest isoform is of type 1ABC and comprises 968 amino acid residues. The functional consequence of the observed multitude of p120ctn splice variants awaits further study, but tissue-specific expression was obvious. Further, we demonstrate that the exon organization, which is not simply related to the Armadillo repeat structure, is very well conserved between the p120ctn gene and the related ARVCF gene, but not at all between these two genes and the beta-catenin or plakoglobin genes. The present data favor the concept that p120ctn is the prototype of a subfamily of Armadillo proteins, comprising ARVCF, p0071, delta-catenin/NPRAP, and plakophilins 1 and 2, that are more related to each other than to other Armadillo proteins.

    Genomics 1998;50;2;129-46

  • The epidermal growth factor receptor modulates the interaction of E-cadherin with the actin cytoskeleton.

    Hazan RB and Norton L

    Department of Surgery, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York 10021, USA. rhazan@smtplink.mssm.edu

    Alterations in the expression or function of molecules that affect cellular adhesion and proliferation are thought to be critical events for tumor progression. Loss of expression of the cell adhesion molecule E-cadherin and increased expression of the epidermal growth factor receptor are two prominent molecular events that are associated with tumorigenesis. The regulation of E-cadherin-dependent cell adhesion by epidermal growth factor (EGF) was therefore examined in the human breast cancer cell line, MDA-MB-468. In this study, changes were observed in the subcellular distribution of components that mediate the cytoplasmic connection between E-cadherin and the actin-based cytoskeleton in response to activation of the EGF receptor. Serum withdrawal activated E-cadherin-dependent cell-cell aggregation in MDA-MB-468 cells, and this treatment stimulated the interaction of actin, alpha-actinin, and vinculin with E-cadherin complexes, despite the absence of alpha-catenin in these cells. By contrast, the co-precipitation of actin with E-cadherin was not detected in several alpha-catenin positive epithelial cell lines. Treatment with EGF inhibited cellular aggregation but did not affect either the levels of E-cadherin or catenin expression nor the association of catenins (beta-catenin, plakoglobin/gamma-catenin, or p120(cas)) with E-cadherin. However, EGF treatment of the MDA-MB-468 cell line dissociated actin, alpha-actinin, and vinculin from the E-cadherin-catenin complex, and this coincided with a robust phosphorylation of beta-catenin, plakoglobin/gamma-catenin, and p120(cas) on tyrosine residues. Furthermore, inactivation of the EGF receptor in serum-treated MDA-MB-468 cells with either a function-blocking antibody or EGF receptor kinase inhibitors mimicked the effects of serum starvation by stimulating both cellular aggregation and assembly of E-cadherin complexes with vinculin and actin. These results demonstrate that the EGF receptor directly regulates cell-cell adhesion through modulation of the interaction of E-cadherin with the actin cytoskeleton and thus substantiates the coordinate role of both of these molecules in tumor progression and metastasis.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 1P50CA68425

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1998;273;15;9078-84

  • Cell confluence regulates tyrosine phosphorylation of adherens junction components in endothelial cells.

    Lampugnani MG, Corada M, Andriopoulou P, Esser S, Risau W and Dejana E

    Mario Negri Institute for Pharmacological Research, Milano, Italy. lampugnani@irfmn.mnegri.it

    In src- and ras-transformed cells, tyrosine phosphorylation of adherens junction (AJ) components is related to impairment of cell-cell adhesion. In this paper we report that in human endothelial cells (EC), tyrosine phosphorylation of AJ can be a physiological process regulated by cell density. Immunofluorescence analysis revealed that a phosphotyrosine (P-tyr) antibody could stain cell-cell junctions only in sparse or loosely confluent EC, while the staining was markedly reduced in tightly confluent cultures. This process was reversible, since on artificial wounding of EC monolayers, the cells at the migrating front reacquired P-tyr labelling at cell contacts. In EC, the major cadherin at intercellular AJ is the cell-type-specific VE-cadherin. We therefore analyzed whether this molecule was at least in part responsible for the changes in P-tyr content at cell junctions. Tyrosine phosphorylation of VE-cadherin, beta-catenin and p120, occurred in looser AJ, i.e. in recently confluent cells, and was notably reduced in tightly confluent cultures. Changes in P-tyr content paralleled changes in the molecular organization of AJ. VE-cadherin was mostly associated with beta-catenin and p120 in loose EC monolayers, while in long-confluent cells, these two catenins were largely replaced by plakoglobin. Inhibition of P-tyr phosphatases (PTPases) by PV markedly augmented the P-tyr content of VE-cadherin, which bound p120 and beta-catenin more efficiently, but not plakoglobin. Transfection experiments in CHO cells showed that p120 could bind to a VE-cadherin cytoplasmic region different from that responsible for beta-catenin binding, and PV stabilized this association. Overall these data indicate that endothelial AJ are dynamic structures that can be affected by the state of confluence of the cells. Tyrosine phosphorylation of VE-cadherin and its association to p120 and beta-catenin characterizes early cell contacts, while the formation of mature and cytoskeleton-connected junctions is accompanied by dephosphorylation and plakoglobin association.

    Journal of cell science 1997;110 ( Pt 17);2065-77

  • Prediction of the coding sequences of unidentified human genes. VII. The complete sequences of 100 new cDNA clones from brain which can code for large proteins in vitro.

    Nagase T, Ishikawa K, Nakajima D, Ohira M, Seki N, Miyajima N, Tanaka A, Kotani H, Nomura N and Ohara O

    Kazusa DNA Research Institute, Chiba, Japan.

    In this series of projects of sequencing human cDNA clones which correspond to relatively long transcripts, we newly determined the entire sequences of 100 cDNA clones which were screened on the basis of the potentiality of coding for large proteins in vitro. The cDNA libraries used were the fractions with average insert sizes from 5.3 to 7.0 kb of the size-fractionated cDNA libraries from human brain. The randomly sampled clones were single-pass sequenced from both the ends to select clones that are not registered in the public database. Then their protein-coding potentialities were examined by an in vitro transcription/translation system, and the clones that generated proteins larger than 60 kDa were entirely sequenced. Each clone gave a distinct open reading frame (ORF), and the length of the ORF was roughly coincident with the approximate molecular mass of the in vitro product estimated from its mobility on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The average size of the cDNA clones sequenced was 6.1 kb, and that of the ORFs corresponded to 1200 amino acid residues. By computer-assisted analysis of the sequences with DNA and protein-motif databases (GenBank and PROSITE databases), the functions of at least 73% of the gene products could be anticipated, and 88% of them (the products of 64 clones) were assigned to the functional categories of proteins relating to cell signaling/communication, nucleic acid managing, and cell structure/motility. The expression profiles in a variety of tissues and chromosomal locations of the sequenced clones have been determined. According to the expression spectra, approximately 11 genes appeared to be predominantly expressed in brain. Most of the remaining genes were categorized into one of the following classes: either the expression occurs in a limited number of tissues (31 genes) or the expression occurs ubiquitously in all but a few tissues (47 genes).

    DNA research : an international journal for rapid publication of reports on genes and genomes 1997;4;2;141-50

  • The novel catenin p120cas binds classical cadherins and induces an unusual morphological phenotype in NIH3T3 fibroblasts.

    Reynolds AB, Daniel JM, Mo YY, Wu J and Zhang Z

    Department of Tumor Cell Biology, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee 38105, USA.

    p120cas (CAS) is a tyrosine kinase substrate whose phosphorylation has been implicated in cell transformation by Src and in ligand-induced signaling through the EGF, PDGF, and CSF-1 receptors. More recently, CAS has been shown to associate with E-cadherin and its cofactors (catenins), molecules that are involved in cell adhesion. Although both CAS and beta-catenin contain armadillo repeat domains (Arm domains), the amino acid identity between these proteins in this region is only 22%, and it is not yet clear whether CAS will emulate other catenins by associating with other members of the cadherin family. Here we report that in addition to binding E-cadherin, wild-type CAS associated with N-cadherin and P-cadherin. Transient transfection of cloned CAS isoforms into MDCK epithelial cells indicated that CAS1 and CAS2 isoforms are equally capable of binding to E-cadherin even though these cells preferentially express CAS2 isoforms. In addition, CAS colocalized with N-cadherin in NIH3T3 cells and analysis of CAS mutants in vivo indicated that the CAS-N-cadherin interaction requires an intact CAS Arm domain. The data suggest that CAS-cadherin interactions in general are dictated by the conserved armadillo repeats and are not heavily influenced by sequences added outside the Arm domain by alternative splicing. Interestingly, overexpression of CAS in NIH3T3 cells induced a striking morphological phenotype characterized by the presence of long dendrite-like processes. This branching phenotype was specific for CAS, since (i) overexpression of the structurally similar beta-catenin had little effect on cell morphology, and (ii) the branching was abolished by deletions in the CAS Arm domain. Our data indicate that, like other catenins, CAS is a cofactor for multiple members of the cadherin family. However, the dramatically distinct phenotype exhibited by fibroblasts overexpressing CAS, versus beta-catenin, support recent data suggesting that these catenins have fundamentally different and possibly opposing roles in cadherin complexes.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, P30 CA21756

    Experimental cell research 1996;225;2;328-37

  • The gene encoding p120cas, a novel catenin, localizes on human chromosome 11q11 (CTNND) and mouse chromosome 2 (Catns).

    Reynolds AB, Jenkins NA, Gilbert DJ, Copeland NG, Shapiro DN, Wu J and Daniel JM

    Department of Tumor Cell Biology, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee 38105, USA.

    The p120cas gene encodes a protein tyrosine kinase substrate that associates with the cell-cell adhesion protein complex containing E-cadherin and its cytoplasmic cofactors alpha-catenin, beta-catenin, and plakoglobin. Like other components of the cadherin/catenin complex, defects in p120cas may contribute to cell malignancy. We have determined the chromosomal location of the p120cas gene in human and mouse using fluorescence in situ hybridization and interspecific backcross analysis, respectively. The human p120cas gene (CTNND) is localized immediately adjacent to the centromere on the long arm of chromosome 11 in band 11q11. The murine p120cas gene (Catns) was assigned to the middle of chromosome 2. Neither locus is currently known to be associated with disease or malignancy.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, N01-CO-46000, P30 CA21756

    Genomics 1996;31;1;127-9

  • The tyrosine kinase substrate p120cas binds directly to E-cadherin but not to the adenomatous polyposis coli protein or alpha-catenin.

    Daniel JM and Reynolds AB

    Department of Tumor Cell Biology, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee 38105, USA.

    The tyrosine kinase substrate p120cas (CAS), which is structurally similar to the cell adhesion proteins beta-catenin and plakoglobin, was recently shown to associate with the E-cadherin-catenin cell adhesion complex. beta-catenin, plakoglobin, and CAS all have an Arm domain that consists of 10 to 13 repeats of a 42-amino-acid motif originally described in the Drosophila Armadillo protein. To determine if the association of CAS with the cadherin cell adhesion machinery is similar to that of beta-catenin and plakoglobin, we examined the CAS-cadherin-catenin interactions in a number of cell lines and in the yeast two-hybrid system. In the prostate carcinoma cell line PC3, CAS associated normally with cadherin complexes despite the specific absence of alpha-catenin in these cells. However, in the colon carcinoma cell line SW480, which has negligible E-cadherin expression, CAS did not associate with beta-catenin, plakoglobin, or alpha-catenin, suggesting that E-cadherin is the protein which bridges CAS to the rest of the complex. In addition, CAS did not associate with the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) tumor suppressor protein in any of the cell lines analyzed. Interestingly, expression of the various CAS isoforms was quite heterogeneous in these tumor cell lines, and in the colon carcinoma cell line HCT116, which expresses normal levels of E-cadherin and the catenins, the CAS1 isoforms were completely absent. By using the yeast two-hybrid system, we confirmed the direct interaction between CAS and E-cadherin and determined that CAS Arm repeats 1 to 10 are necessary and sufficient for this interaction. Hence, like beta-catenin and plakoglobin, CAS interacts directly with E-cadherin in vivo; however, unlike beta-catenin and plakoglobin, CAS does not interact with APC or alpha-catenin.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA55724, P30 CA21756

    Molecular and cellular biology 1995;15;9;4819-24

  • Tyrosine phosphorylation regulates the adhesions of ras-transformed breast epithelia.

    Kinch MS, Clark GJ, Der CJ and Burridge K

    Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill 27599, USA.

    Transformed epithelial cells often are characterized by a fibroblastic or mesenchymal morphology. These cells exhibit altered cell-cell and cell-substrate interactions. Here we have identified changes in the adhesions and cytoskeletal interactions of transformed epithelial cells that contribute to their altered morphology. Using MCF-10A human breast epithelial cells as a model system, we have found that transformation by an activated form of ras is characterized by less developed adherens-type junctions between cells but increased focal adhesions. Contributing to the modified adherens junctions of the transformed cells are decreased interactions among beta-catenin, E-cadherin, and the actin cytoskeleton. The ras-transformed cells reveal elevated phosphotyrosine in many proteins, including beta-catenin and p120 Cas. Whereas in the normal cells beta-catenin is found in association with E-cadherin, p120 Cas is not. In the ras-transformed cells, the situation is reversed; tyrosine-phosphorylated p120 Cas, but not tyrosine-phosphorylated beta-catenin, now is detected in E-cadherin complexes. The tyrosine-phosphorylated beta-catenin also shows increased detergent solubility, suggesting a decreased association with the actin cytoskeleton. p120 Cas, whether tyrosine phosphorylated or not, partitions into the detergent soluble fraction, suggesting that it is not tightly bound to the actin cytoskeleton in either the normal or ras-transformed cells. Inhibitors of tyrosine kinases decrease the level of tyrosine phosphorylation and restore a normal epithelial morphology to the ras-transformed cells. In particular, decreased tyrosine phosphorylation of beta-catenin is accompanied by increased interaction with both E-cadherin and the detergent insoluble cytoskeletal fraction. These results suggest that elevated tyrosine phosphorylation of proteins such as beta-catenin and p120 Cas contribute to the altered adherens junctions of ras-transformed epithelia.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 5 T32 CA09156; NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-45100; NIGMS NIH HHS: GM-29860

    The Journal of cell biology 1995;130;2;461-71

  • Association of p120, a tyrosine kinase substrate, with E-cadherin/catenin complexes.

    Shibamoto S, Hayakawa M, Takeuchi K, Hori T, Miyazawa K, Kitamura N, Johnson KR, Wheelock MJ, Matsuyoshi N, Takeichi M et al.

    Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Setsunan University, Osaka, Japan.

    p120 was originally identified as a substrate of pp60src and several receptor tyrosine kinases, but its function is not known. Recent studies revealed that this protein shows homology to a group of proteins, beta-catenin/Armadillo and plakoglobin (gamma-catenin), which are associated with the cell adhesion molecules cadherins. In this study, we examined whether p120 is associated with E-cadherin using the human carcinoma cell line HT29, as well as other cell lines, which express both of these proteins. When proteins that copurified with E-cadherin were analyzed, not only alpha-catenin, beta-catenin, and plakoglobin but also p120 were detected. Conversely, immunoprecipitates of p120 contained E-cadherin and all the catenins, although a large subpopulation of p120 was not associated with E-cadherin. Analysis of these immunoprecipitates suggests that 20% or less of the extractable E-cadherin is associated with p120. When p120 immunoprecipitation was performed with cell lysates depleted of E-cadherin, beta-catenin was no longer coprecipitated, and the amount of plakoglobin copurified was greatly reduced. This finding suggests that there are various forms of p120 complexes, including p120/E-cadherin/beta-catenin and p120/E-cadherin/plakoglobin complexes; this association profile contrasts with the mutually exclusive association of beta-catenin and plakoglobin with cadherins. When the COOH-terminal catenin binding site was truncated from E-cadherin, not only beta-catenin but also p120 did not coprecipitate with this mutated E-cadherin. Immunocytological studies showed that p120 colocalized with E-cadherin at cell-cell contact sites, even after non-ionic detergent extraction. Treatment of cells with hepatocyte growth factor/scatter factor altered the level of tyrosine phosphorylation of p120 as well as of beta-catenin and plakoglobin. These results suggest that p120 associates with E-cadherin at its COOH-terminal region, but the mechanism for this association differs from that for the association of beta-catenin and plakoglobin with E-cadherin, and thus, that p120, whose function could be modulated by growth factors, may play a unique role in regulation of the cadherin-catenin adhesion system.

    The Journal of cell biology 1995;128;5;949-57

  • E-cadherin and APC compete for the interaction with beta-catenin and the cytoskeleton.

    Hülsken J, Birchmeier W and Behrens J

    Max-Delbrück-Center for Molecular Medicine, Berlin, Germany.

    beta-Catenin is involved in the formation of adherens junctions of mammalian epithelia. It interacts with the cell adhesion molecule E-cadherin and also with the tumor suppressor gene product APC, and the Drosophila homologue of beta-catenin, armadillo, mediates morphogenetic signals. We demonstrate here that E-cadherin and APC directly compete for binding to the internal, armadillo-like repeats of beta-catenin; the NH2-terminal domain of beta-catenin mediates the interaction of the alternative E-cadherin and APC complexes to the cytoskeleton by binding to alpha-catenin. Plakoglobin (gamma-catenin), which is structurally related to beta-catenin, mediates identical interactions. We thus show that the APC tumor suppressor gene product forms strikingly similar associations as found in cell junctions and suggest that beta-catenin and plakoglobin are central regulators of cell adhesion, cytoskeletal interaction, and tumor suppression.

    The Journal of cell biology 1994;127;6 Pt 2;2061-9

Gene lists (6)

Gene List Source Species Name Description Gene count
L00000009 G2C Homo sapiens Human PSD Human orthologues of mouse PSD adapted from Collins et al (2006) 1080
L00000016 G2C Homo sapiens Human PSP Human orthologues of mouse PSP adapted from Collins et al (2006) 1121
L00000059 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-HUMAN-PSD-CONSENSUS Human cortex PSD consensus 748
L00000061 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-MOUSE-PSD-CONSENSUS Mouse cortex PSD consensus (ortho) 984
L00000069 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-HUMAN-PSD-FULL Human cortex biopsy PSD full list 1461
L00000071 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-MOUSE-PSD-FULL Mouse cortex PSD full list (ortho) 1556
© G2C 2014. The Genes to Cognition Programme received funding from The Wellcome Trust and the EU FP7 Framework Programmes:
EUROSPIN (FP7-HEALTH-241498), SynSys (FP7-HEALTH-242167) and GENCODYS (FP7-HEALTH-241995).

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