A distinct PAR complex associates physically with VE-cadherin in vertebrate endothelial cells.
ABSTRACT: A cell polarity complex consisting of partitioning defective 3 (PAR-3), atypical protein kinase C (aPKC) and PAR-6 has a central role in the development of cell polarity in epithelial cells. In vertebrate epithelial cells, this complex localizes to tight junctions. Here, we provide evidence for the existence of a distinct PAR protein complex in endothelial cells. Both PAR-3 and PAR-6 associate directly with the adherens junction protein vascular endothelial cadherin (VE-cadherin). This association is direct and mediated through non-overlapping domains in VE-cadherin. PAR-3 and PAR-6 are recruited independently to cell-cell contacts. Surprisingly, the VE-cadherin-associated PAR protein complex lacks aPKC. Ectopic expression of VE-cadherin in epithelial cells affects tight junction formation. Our findings suggest that in endothelial cells, another PAR protein complex exists that localizes to adherens junctions and does not promote cellular polarization through aPKC activity. They also point to a direct role of a cadherin in the regulation of cell polarity in vertebrates.
Project description:In epithelia, cells adhere to each other in a dynamic fashion, allowing the cells to change their shape and move along each other during morphogenesis. The regulation of adhesion occurs at the belt-shaped adherens junction, the zonula adherens (ZA). Formation of the ZA depends on components of the Par-atypical PKC (Par-aPKC) complex of polarity regulators. We have identified the Lin11, Isl-1, Mec-3 (LIM) protein Smallish (Smash), the orthologue of vertebrate LMO7, as a binding partner of Bazooka/Par-3 (Baz), a core component of the Par-aPKC complex. Smash also binds to Canoe/Afadin and the tyrosine kinase Src42A and localizes to the ZA in a planar polarized fashion. Animals lacking Smash show loss of planar cell polarity (PCP) in the embryonic epidermis and reduced cell bond tension, leading to severe defects during embryonic morphogenesis of epithelial tissues and organs. Overexpression of Smash causes apical constriction of epithelial cells. We propose that Smash is a key regulator of morphogenesis coordinating PCP and actomyosin contractility at the ZA.
Project description:The Par-3/Baz family of polarity determinants is highly conserved across metazoans and includes C. elegans PAR-3, Drosophila Bazooka (Baz), human Par-3 (PARD3), and human Par-3-like (PARD3B). The C. elegans PAR-3 protein localises to the anterior pole of asymmetrically dividing zygotes with cell division cycle 42 (CDC42), atypical protein kinase C (aPKC), and PAR-6. The same C. elegans 'PAR complex' can also localise in an apical ring in epithelial cells. Drosophila Baz localises to the apical pole of asymmetrically dividing neuroblasts with Cdc42-aPKC-Par6, while in epithelial cells localises both in an apical ring with Cdc42-aPKC-Par6 and with E-cadherin at adherens junctions. These apical and junctional localisations have become separated in human PARD3, which is strictly apical in many epithelia, and human PARD3B, which is strictly junctional in many epithelia. We discuss the molecular basis for this fundamental difference in localisation, as well as the possible functions of Par-3/Baz family proteins as oligomeric clustering agents at the apical domain or at adherens junctions in epithelial stem cells. The evolution of Par-3 family proteins into distinct apical PARD3 and junctional PARD3B orthologs coincides with the emergence of stratified squamous epithelia in vertebrates, where PARD3B, but not PARD3, is strongly expressed in basal layer stem cells - which lack a typical apical domain. We speculate that PARD3B may contribute to clustering of E-cadherin, signalling from adherens junctions via Src family kinases or mitotic spindle orientation by adherens junctions in response to mechanical forces.
Project description:Bazooka (PAR-3), PAR-6, and aPKC form a complex that plays a key role in the polarization of many cell types. In epithelial cells, however, Bazooka localizes below PAR-6 and aPKC at the apical/lateral junction. Here, we show that Baz is excluded from the apical aPKC domain in epithelia by aPKC phosphorylation, which disrupts the Baz/aPKC interaction. Removal of Baz from the complex is epithelial-specific because it also requires the Crumbs complex, which prevents the Baz/PAR-6 interaction. In the absence of Crumbs or aPKC phosphorylation of Baz, mislocalized Baz recruits adherens junction components apically, leading to a loss of the apical domain and an expansion of lateral. Thus, apical exclusion of Baz by Crumbs and aPKC defines the apical/lateral border. Although Baz acts as an aPKC targeting and specificity factor in nonepithelial cells, our results reveal that it performs a complementary function in positioning the adherens junction in epithelia.
Project description:Blood vessel tubulogenesis requires the formation of stable cell-to-cell contacts and the establishment of apicobasal polarity of vascular endothelial cells. Cell polarity is regulated by highly conserved cell polarity protein complexes such as the Par3-aPKC-Par6 complex and the CRB3-Pals1-PATJ complex, which are expressed by many different cell types and regulate various aspects of cell polarity. Here we describe a functional interaction of VE-cadherin with the cell polarity protein Pals1. Pals1 directly interacts with VE-cadherin through a membrane-proximal motif in the cytoplasmic domain of VE-cadherin. VE-cadherin clusters Pals1 at cell-cell junctions. Mutating the Pals1-binding motif in VE-cadherin abrogates the ability of VE-cadherin to regulate apicobasal polarity and vascular lumen formation. In a similar way, deletion of the Par3-binding motif at the C-terminus of VE-cadherin impairs apicobasal polarity and vascular lumen formation. Our findings indicate that the biological activity of VE-cadherin in regulating endothelial polarity and vascular lumen formation is mediated through its interaction with the two cell polarity proteins Pals1 and Par3.
Project description:We have previously shown that during early Caenorhabditis elegans embryogenesis PKC-3, a C. elegans atypical PKC (aPKC), plays critical roles in the establishment of cell polarity required for subsequent asymmetric cleavage by interacting with PAR-3 [Tabuse, Y., Y. Izumi, F. Piano, K.J. Kemphues, J. Miwa, and S. Ohno. 1998. Development (Camb.). 125:3607--3614]. Together with the fact that aPKC and a mammalian PAR-3 homologue, aPKC-specific interacting protein (ASIP), colocalize at the tight junctions of polarized epithelial cells (Izumi, Y., H. Hirose, Y. Tamai, S.-I. Hirai, Y. Nagashima, T. Fujimoto, Y. Tabuse, K.J. Kemphues, and S. Ohno. 1998. J. Cell Biol. 143:95--106), this suggests a ubiquitous role for aPKC in establishing cell polarity in multicellular organisms. Here, we show that the overexpression of a dominant-negative mutant of aPKC (aPKCkn) in MDCK II cells causes mislocalization of ASIP/PAR-3. Immunocytochemical analyses, as well as measurements of paracellular diffusion of ions or nonionic solutes, demonstrate that the biogenesis of the tight junction structure itself is severely affected in aPKCkn-expressing cells. Furthermore, these cells show increased interdomain diffusion of fluorescent lipid and disruption of the polarized distribution of Na(+),K(+)-ATPase, suggesting that epithelial cell surface polarity is severely impaired in these cells. On the other hand, we also found that aPKC associates not only with ASIP/PAR-3, but also with a mammalian homologue of C. elegans PAR-6 (mPAR-6), and thereby mediates the formation of an aPKC-ASIP/PAR-3-PAR-6 ternary complex that localizes to the apical junctional region of MDCK cells. These results indicate that aPKC is involved in the evolutionarily conserved PAR protein complex, and plays critical roles in the development of the junctional structures and apico-basal polarization of mammalian epithelial cells.
Project description:Cadherin trafficking controls tissue morphogenesis and cell polarity. The endocytic adaptor Numb participates in apicobasal polarity by acting on intercellular adhesions in epithelial cells. However, it remains largely unknown how Numb controls cadherin-based adhesion. Here, we found that Numb directly interacted with p120 catenin (p120), which is known to interact with E-cadherin and prevent its internalization. Numb accumulated at intercellular adhesion sites and the apical membrane in epithelial cells. Depletion of Numb impaired E-cadherin internalization, whereas depletion of p120 accelerated internalization. Expression of the Numb-binding fragment of p120 inhibited E-cadherin internalization in a dominant-negative fashion, indicating that Numb interacts with the E-cadherin/p120 complex and promotes E-cadherin endocytosis. Impairment of Numb induced mislocalization of E-cadherin from the lateral membrane to the apical membrane. Atypical protein kinase C (aPKC), a member of the PAR complex, phosphorylated Numb and inhibited its association with p120 and ?-adaptin. Depletion or inhibition of aPKC accelerated E-cadherin internalization. Wild-type Numb restored E-cadherin internalization in the Numb-depleted cells, whereas a phosphomimetic mutant or a mutant with defective ?-adaptin-binding ability did not restore the internalization. Thus, we propose that aPKC phosphorylates Numb to prevent its binding to p120 and ?-adaptin, thereby attenuating E-cadherin endocytosis to maintain apicobasal polarity.
Project description:Atypical protein kinase C (aPKC) is a key apical-basal polarity determinant and Par complex component. It is recruited by Par3/Baz (Bazooka in Drosophila) into epithelial apical domains through high-affinity interaction. Paradoxically, aPKC also phosphorylates Par3/Baz, provoking its relocalization to adherens junctions (AJs). We show that Par3 conserved region 3 (CR3) forms a tight inhibitory complex with a primed aPKC kinase domain, blocking substrate access. A CR3 motif flanking its PKC consensus site disrupts the aPKC kinase N lobe, separating P-loop/?B/?C contacts. A second CR3 motif provides a high-affinity anchor. Mutation of either motif switches CR3 to an efficient in vitro substrate by exposing its phospho-acceptor site. In vivo, mutation of either CR3 motif alters Par3/Baz localization from apical to AJs. Our results reveal how Par3/Baz CR3 can antagonize aPKC in stable apical Par complexes and suggests that modulation of CR3 inhibitory arms or opposing aPKC pockets would perturb the interaction, promoting Par3/Baz phosphorylation.
Project description:In Drosophila, the adaptor protein Stardust is essential for the stabilization of the polarity determinant Crumbs in various epithelial tissues, including the embryonic epidermis, the follicular epithelium and photoreceptor cells of the compound eye. In turn, Stardust recruits another adaptor protein, PATJ, to the subapical region to support adherens junction formation and morphogenetic events. Moreover, Stardust binds to Lin-7, which is dispensable in epithelial cells but functions in postsynaptic vesicle fusion. Finally, Stardust has been reported to bind directly to PAR-6, thereby linking the Crumbs-Stardust-PATJ complex to the PAR-6/aPKC complex. PAR-6 and aPKC are also capable of directly binding Bazooka (the Drosophila homologue of PAR-3) to form the PAR/aPKC complex, which is essential for apical-basal polarity and cell-cell contact formation in most epithelia. However, little is known about the physiological relevance of these interactions in the embryonic epidermis of Drosophila in vivo. Thus, we performed a structure-function analysis of the annotated domains with GFP-tagged Stardust and evaluated the localization and function of the mutant proteins in epithelial cells of the embryonic epidermis. The data presented here confirm a crucial role of the PDZ domain in binding Crumbs and recruiting the protein to the subapical region. However, the isolated PDZ domain is not capable of being recruited to the cortex, and the SH3 domain is essential to support the binding to Crumbs. Notably, the conserved N-terminal regions (ECR1 and ECR2) are not crucial for epithelial polarity. Finally, the GUK domain plays an important role for the protein's function, which is not directly linked to Crumbs stabilization, and the L27N domain is essential for epithelial polarization independently of recruiting PATJ.
Project description:Cdc42-GTP is required for apical domain formation in epithelial cells, where it recruits and activates the Par-6-aPKC polarity complex, but how the activity of Cdc42 itself is restricted apically is unclear. We used sequence analysis and 3D structural modeling to determine which Drosophila GTPase-activating proteins (GAPs) are likely to interact with Cdc42 and identified RhoGAP19D as the only high-probability Cdc42GAP required for polarity in the follicular epithelium. RhoGAP19D is recruited by α-catenin to lateral E-cadherin adhesion complexes, resulting in exclusion of active Cdc42 from the lateral domain. rhogap19d mutants therefore lead to lateral Cdc42 activity, which expands the apical domain through increased Par-6/aPKC activity and stimulates lateral contractility through the myosin light chain kinase, Genghis khan (MRCK). This causes buckling of the epithelium and invasion into the adjacent tissue, a phenotype resembling that of precancerous breast lesions. Thus, RhoGAP19D couples lateral cadherin adhesion to the apical localization of active Cdc42, thereby suppressing epithelial invasion.
Project description:par3 is a multiple-PDZ-containing scaffold protein that is central to the organization of an evolutionarily conserved cell polarity complex consisting of par3, par6, and aPKC. The ability of par3 PDZ domains to target various adhesion molecules and enzymes at the plasma membrane leads to the controlled localization of par6 and aPKC, which has firmly established its role in epithelial cell polarity. Of the numerous PDZ ligands associated with par3, interaction of its third PDZ domain with the class II ligand found within the C-terminal tail of vascular endothelial cadherin (VE-Cad) suggests a role in endothelial cell polarity as well, but the molecular details of the interaction are unknown. Previously determined structures of par3-PDZ3 bound to the class I ligand found within the C-terminal tail of the phosphoinositide phosphatase PTEN revealed two discrete binding sites: a canonical PDZ-ligand interaction site and a distal site involving charge-charge complements. Currently, it is unclear if par3-PDZ3 employs both canonical and distal binding modes in its association with VE-Cad or if these modes are unique to the PTEN interaction, suggesting a possible mechanism for ligand specificity within the polarity network. The structure of par3-PDZ3 bound to the C-terminal tail of VE-Cad presented in this work shows that both canonical and distal interactions are utilized in binding. Biophysical measurements using fluorescence polarization and two-dimensional NMR implicate the intermolecular charge pairing of aspartic acid 777 (VE-Cad) and arginine 609 (par3-PDZ3) as a crucial modulator of complex formation. Phosphorylation of VE-Cad at serine 776 increases its affinity for par3, demonstrating that post-translational modifications outside of the canonical carboxylate binding site can enhance PDZ-ligand interactions. Comparison of the VE-Cad and PTEN complexes highlights how the unique molecular architecture of par3-PDZ3 can accommodate both canonical and distal interaction modes that allow dual-class specificity for these two ligand types.