The Elongin BC complex interacts with the conserved SOCS-box motif present in members of the SOCS, ras, WD-40 repeat, and ankyrin repeat families.
ABSTRACT: The Elongin BC complex was identified initially as a positive regulator of RNA polymerase II (Pol II) elongation factor Elongin A and subsequently as a component of the multiprotein von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) tumor suppressor complex, in which it participates in both tumor suppression and negative regulation of hypoxia-inducible genes. Elongin B is a ubiquitin-like protein, and Elongin C is a Skp1-like protein that binds to a BC-box motif that is present in both Elongin A and VHL and is distinct from the conserved F-box motif recognized by Skp1. In this report, we demonstrate that the Elongin BC complex also binds to a functional BC box present in the SOCS box, a sequence motif identified recently in the suppressor of cytokine signaling-1 (SOCS-1) protein, as well as in a collection of additional proteins belonging to the SOCS, ras, WD-40 repeat, SPRY domain, and ankyrin repeat families. In addition, we present evidence (1) that the Elongin BC complex is a component of a multiprotein SOCS-1 complex that attenuates Jak/STAT signaling by binding to Jak2 and inhibiting Jak2 kinase, and (2) that by interacting with the SOCS box, the Elongin BC complex can increase expression of the SOCS-1 protein by inhibiting its degradation. These results suggest that Elongin BC is a multifunctional regulatory complex capable of controlling multiple pathways in the cell through interaction with a short degenerate sequence motif found in many different proteins.
Project description:Growth hormone (GH) signaling is tightly controlled by ubiquitination of GH receptors, phosphorylation levels, and accessibility of binding sites for downstream signaling partners. Members of the suppressors of cytokine signaling (SOCS) family function as key regulators at all levels of this pathway, and mouse knockout studies implicate SOCS2 as the primary suppressor. To elucidate the structural basis for SOCS2 function, we determined the 1.9-A crystal structure of the ternary complex of SOCS2 with elongin C and elongin B. The structure defines a prototypical SOCS box ubiquitin ligase with a Src homology 2 (SH2) domain as a substrate recognition motif. Overall, the SOCS box and SH2 domain show a conserved spatial domain arrangement with the BC box and substrate recognition domain of the von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) tumor suppressor protein, suggesting a common mechanism of ubiquitination in these cullin-dependent E3 ligases. The SOCS box binds elongin BC in a similar fashion to the VHL BC box and shows extended structural conservation with the F box of the Skp2 ubiquitin ligase. A previously unrecognized feature of the SOCS box is revealed with the burial of the C terminus, which packs together with the N-terminal extended SH2 subdomain to create a stable interface between the SOCS box and SH2 domain. This domain organization is conserved in SOCS1-3 and CIS1, which share a strictly conserved length of their C termini, but not in SOCS4, 5, and 7, which have extended C termini defining two distinct classes of inter- and intramolecular SOCS box interactions.
Project description:The ECS (Elongin B/C-Cul2/Cul5-SOCS-box protein) complex is a member of a family of ubiquitin ligases that share a Cullin-Rbx module. SOCS-box proteins recruit substrates to the ECS complex and are linked to Cullin-Rbx via Elongin B/C. VHL has been implicated as a SOCS-box protein, but lacks a C-terminal sequence (downstream of the BC box) of the SOCS box. We now show that VHL specifically interacts with endogenous Cul2-Rbx1 in mammalian cells, whereas SOCS-box proteins associate with Cul5-Rbx2. We also identify LRR-1 and FEM1B as proteins that share a region of homology with VHL (the VHL box, including the BC box and downstream residues) and associate with Cul2-Rbx1. ECS complexes can thus be classified into two distinct protein assemblies, that is, those that contain a subunit with a VHL box (composed of the BC box and a downstream Cul2 box) that interacts with Cul2-Rbx1, and those that contain a subunit with a SOCS box (BC box and downstream Cul5 box) that interacts with Cul5-Rbx2. Domain-swapping analyses showed that the specificity of interaction of VHL-box and SOCS-box proteins with Cullin-Rbx modules is determined by the Cul2 and Cul5 boxes, respectively. Finally, RNAi-mediated knockdown of the Cul2-Rbx1 inhibited the VHL-mediated degradation of HIF-2alpha, whereas knockdown of Cul5-Rbx2 did not affect it. These data suggest that the functions of the Cul2-Rbx1 and Cul5-Rbx2 modules are distinct.
Project description:The tumor suppressor VHL (von Hippel-Lindau) protein is a substrate receptor for Ubiquitin Cullin Ring Ligase complexes (CRLs), containing a BC-box domain that associates to the adaptor Elongin B/C. VHL targets hypoxia-inducible factor 1? to proteasome-dependent degradation. Gam1 is an adenoviral protein, which also possesses a BC-box domain that interacts with the host Elongin B/C, thereby acting as a viral substrate receptor. Gam1 associates with both Cullin2 and Cullin5 to form CRL complexes targeting the host protein SUMO enzyme SAE1 for proteasomal degradation. We show that Gam1 protein expression induces VHL protein degradation leading to hypoxia-inducible factor 1? stabilization and induction of its downstream targets. We also characterize the CRL-dependent mechanism that drives VHL protein degradation via proteasome. Interestingly, expression of Suppressor of Cytokine Signaling (SOCS) domain-containing viral proteins and cellular BC-box proteins leads to VHL protein degradation, in a SOCS domain-containing manner. Our work underscores the exquisite ability of viral domains to uncover new regulatory mechanisms by hijacking key cellular proteins.
Project description:The HIV-1 viral infectivity factor (Vif) protein recruits an E3 ubiquitin ligase complex, comprising the cellular proteins elongin B and C (EloBC), cullin 5 (Cul5) and RING-box 2 (Rbx2), to the anti-viral proteins APOBEC3G (A3G) and APOBEC3F (A3F) and induces their polyubiquitination and proteasomal degradation. In this study, we used purified proteins and direct in vitro binding assays, isothermal titration calorimetry and NMR spectroscopy to describe the molecular mechanism for assembly of the Vif-EloBC ternary complex. We demonstrate that Vif binds to EloBC in two locations, and that both interactions induce structural changes in the SOCS box of Vif as well as EloBC. In particular, in addition to the previously established binding of Vif's BC box to EloC, we report a novel interaction between the conserved Pro-Pro-Leu-Pro motif of Vif and the C-terminal domain of EloB. Using cell-based assays, we further show that this interaction is necessary for the formation of a functional ligase complex, thus establishing a role of this motif. We conclude that HIV-1 Vif engages EloBC via an induced-folding mechanism that does not require additional co-factors, and speculate that these features distinguish Vif from other EloBC specificity factors such as cellular SOCS proteins, and may enhance the prospects of obtaining therapeutic inhibitors of Vif function.
Project description:The HIV-1 viral infectivity factor (Vif) neutralizes cell-encoded antiviral APOBEC3 proteins by recruiting a cellular ElonginB (EloB)/ElonginC (EloC)/Cullin5-containing ubiquitin ligase complex, resulting in APOBEC3 ubiquitination and proteolysis. The suppressors-of-cytokine-signalling-like domain (SOCS-box) of HIV-1 Vif is essential for E3 ligase engagement, and contains a BC box as well as an unusual proline-rich motif. Here, we report the NMR solution structure of the Vif SOCS-ElonginBC (EloBC) complex. In contrast to SOCS-boxes described in other proteins, the HIV-1 Vif SOCS-box contains only one ?-helical domain followed by a ?-sheet fold. The SOCS-box of Vif binds primarily to EloC by hydrophobic interactions. The functionally essential proline-rich motif mediates a direct but weak interaction with residues 101-104 of EloB, inducing a conformational change from an unstructured state to a structured state. The structure of the complex and biophysical studies provide detailed insight into the function of Vif's proline-rich motif and reveal novel dynamic information on the Vif-EloBC interaction.
Project description:Cellular protein degradation pathways can be utilized by viruses to establish an environment that favors their propagation. Here we report that the Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV)-encoded latency-associated nuclear antigen (LANA) directly functions as a component of the EC5S ubiquitin complex targeting the tumor suppressors von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) and p53 for degradation. We have characterized a suppressor of cytokine signaling box-like motif within LANA composed of an Elongin B and C box and a Cullin box, which is spatially located at its amino and carboxyl termini. This motif is necessary for LANA interaction with the Cul5-Elongin BC complex, to promote polyubiquitylation of cellular substrates VHL and p53 in vitro via its amino- and carboxyl-terminal binding domain, respectively. In transfected cells as well as KSHV-infected B lymphoma cells, LANA expression stimulates degradation of VHL and p53. Additionally, specific RNA interference-mediated LANA knockdown stabilized VHL and p53 in primary effusion lymphoma cells. Thus, manipulation of tumor suppressors by LANA potentially provides a favorable environment for progression of KSHV-infected tumor cells.
Project description:Elongin is a heterotrimeric transcription elongation factor composed of subunits A, B, and C in mammals. Elongin A and C are F-box-containing and SKP1 homologue proteins, respectively, and are therefore of interest for their potential roles in cell cycle-dependent proteolysis. Mammalian elongin C interacts with both elongin A and elongin B, as well as with the von Hippel-Lindau tumor suppressor protein VHL. To investigate the corresponding interactions in yeast, we have utilized NMR spectroscopy combined with ultracentrifugal sedimentation experiments to examine complexes of yeast elongin C (Elc1) with yeast elongin A (Ela1) and two peptides from homologous regions of Ela1 and human VHL. Elc1 alone is a homotetramer composed of subunits with a structured N-terminal region and a dynamically unstable C-terminal region. Binding of a peptide fragment of the Elc1-interaction domain of Ela1 or with a homologous peptide from VHL promotes folding of the C-terminal region of Elc1 into two regular helical structures and dissociates Elc1 into homodimers. Moreover, analysis of the complex of Elc1 with the full Elc1-interaction domain of Ela1 reveals that the Elc1 homodimer is dissociated to preferentially form an Ela1/Elc1 heterodimer. Thus, elongin C is found to oligomerize in solution and to undergo significant structural rearrangements upon binding of two different partner proteins. These results suggest a structural basis for the interaction of an F-box-containing protein with a SKP1 homologue and the modulation of this interaction by the tumor suppressor VHL.
Project description:Neuromodulatory cells transduce environmental information into long-lasting behavioral responses. However, the mechanisms governing how neuronal cells influence behavioral plasticity are difficult to characterize. Here, we adapted the translating ribosome affinity purification (TRAP) approach in C. elegans to profile ribosome-associated mRNAs from three major tissues and the neuromodulatory dopaminergic and serotonergic cells. We identified elc-2, an Elongin C ortholog, specifically expressed in stress-sensing amphid neuron dual ciliated sensory ending (ADF) serotonergic sensory neurons, and we found that it plays a role in mediating a long-lasting change in serotonin-dependent feeding behavior induced by heat stress. We demonstrate that ELC-2 and the von Hippel-Lindau protein VHL-1, components of an Elongin-Cullin-SOCS box (ECS) E3 ubiquitin ligase, modulate this behavior after experiencing stress. Also, heat stress induces a transient redistribution of ELC-2, becoming more nuclearly enriched. Together, our results demonstrate dynamic regulation of an E3 ligase and a role for an ECS complex in neuromodulation and control of lasting behavioral states.
Project description:In cullin-RING E3 ubiquitin ligases, substrate binding proteins, such as VHL-box, SOCS-box or the F-box proteins, recruit substrates for ubiquitination, accurately positioning and orienting the substrates for ubiquitin transfer. Yet, how the E3 machinery precisely positions the substrate is unknown. Here, we simulated nine substrate binding proteins: Skp2, Fbw7, beta-TrCP1, Cdc4, Fbs1, TIR1, pVHL, SOCS2, and SOCS4, in the unbound form and bound to Skp1, ASK1 or Elongin C. All nine proteins have two domains: one binds to the substrate; the other to E3 ligase modules Skp1/ASK1/Elongin C. We discovered that in all cases the flexible inter-domain linker serves as a hinge, rotating the substrate binding domain, optimally and accurately positioning it for ubiquitin transfer. We observed a conserved proline in the linker of all nine proteins. In all cases, the prolines pucker substantially and the pucker is associated with the backbone rotation toward the E2/ubiquitin. We further observed that the linker flexibility could be regulated allosterically by binding events associated with either domain. We conclude that the flexible linker in the substrate binding proteins orients the substrate for the ubiquitin transfer. Our findings provide a mechanism for ubiquitination and polyubiquitination, illustrating that these processes are under conformational control.
Project description:Multi-subunit Cullin-RING E3 ligases often use repeat domain proteins as substrate-specific adaptors. Structures of these macromolecular assemblies are determined for the F-box-containing leucine-rich repeat and WD40 repeat families, but not for the suppressor of cytokine signaling (SOCS)-box-containing ankyrin repeat proteins (ASB1-18), which assemble with Elongins B and C and Cul5. We determined the crystal structures of the ternary complex of ASB9-Elongin B/C as well as the interacting N-terminal domain of Cul5 and used structural comparisons to establish a model for the complete Cul5-based E3 ligase. The structures reveal a distinct architecture of the ASB9 complex that positions the ankyrin domain coaxial to the SOCS box-Elongin B/C complex and perpendicular to other repeat protein complexes. This alternative architecture appears favorable to present the ankyrin domain substrate-binding site to the E2-ubiquitin, while also providing spacing suitable for bulky ASB9 substrates, such as the creatine kinases. The presented Cul5 structure also differs from previous models and deviates from other Cullins via a rigid-body rotation between Cullin repeats. This work highlights the adaptability of repeat domain proteins as scaffolds in substrate recognition and lays the foundation for future structure-function studies of this important E3 family.