AbstractsBiology & Animal Science

Investigation of hPin1 mediated phosphorylation dependency in degradation control of c-Myc oncoprotein

by Malin Johansson

Institution: Linköping University
Year: 2012
Keywords: Protein-protein interaction; structure biology; phosphorylation; oncoprotein; c-Myc; hPin1; Surface Plasmon Resonance; Nuclear Magnetic Resonance; Natural Sciences; Naturvetenskap; Kemisk biologi; Chemical Biology
Record ID: 1368097
Full text PDF: http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-92718


Cancer is the main cause of death in economically developed countries and the second leading cause of death in developing countries. Along with today’s knowledge that more than two hundred different diseases lie in the category of this prognosis there is an urge for more detailed and case-specific treatments to replace the dramatic actions of available radiation- and chemotherapy, which in many cases do not make a difference between healthy and cancer cells. The transcription factor and onco-protein c-Myc has, after being extensively studied during the past decades, become a prognostic marker for almost all cancer forms known. Still, many questions remain regarding how c-Myc interacts with its many different target proteins involved in cell-cycle regulation, proliferation and apoptosis. Current cell biology states that one of the regulating proteins, hPin1, interacts with c-Myc in a phosphorylation-dependent manner which appears to direct the correct timing of c-Myc activation and degradation through the ubiquitin/proteasome-pathway. The critical phosphorylation sites, T58 and S62, are located in the Myc-Box-I (MBI) region, a highly conserved sequence strongly coupled to aggressive tumourigenesis by hotspot mutations. Interestingly, preliminary results in the Sunnerhagen group suggested that MBI alone did not bind hPin1, suggesting hPin1 targeting a site distal from the residues to be phosphorylated. In this thesis, results from Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) show that the docking WW-domain of hPin1 binds unphosphorylated c-Myc at a region distal from the phosphorylation site, including residues 13-34. Furthermore, SPR experiments revealed that hPin1 binds unphosphorylated c-Myc with apparently greater affinity and with much slower kinetics than phosphorylated c-Myc. Thus, hPin1 recognition and interaction with c-Myc appears not to be dependent on phosphorylation of c-Myc prior binding. The newly identified binding region of c-Myc, located N-terminal of MBI, may further increase the understanding of protein degradation control and c-Myc function. The studies presented in this thesis provide a brick in the puzzle of c-Myc and hPin1 coupled oncogenesis for further development of new therapeutic strategies.