Flotillin-1/reggie-2 protein plays dual role in activation of receptor-tyrosine kinase/mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling.
ABSTRACT: Our previous work has shown that the membrane microdomain-associated flotillin proteins are potentially involved in epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor signaling. Here we show that knockdown of flotillin-1/reggie-2 results in reduced EGF-induced phosphorylation of specific tyrosines in the EGF receptor (EGFR) and in inefficient activation of the downstream mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase and Akt signaling. Although flotillin-1 has been implicated in endocytosis, its depletion affects neither the endocytosis nor the ubiquitination of the EGFR. However, EGF-induced clustering of EGFR at the cell surface is altered in cells lacking flotillin-1. Furthermore, we show that flotillins form molecular complexes with EGFR in an EGF/EGFR kinase-independent manner. However, knockdown of flotillin-1 appears to affect the activation of the downstream MAP kinase signaling more directly. We here show that flotillin-1 forms a complex with CRAF, MEK1, ERK, and KSR1 (kinase suppressor of RAS) and that flotillin-1 knockdown leads to a direct inactivation of ERK1/2. Thus, flotillin-1 plays a direct role during both the early phase (activation of the receptor) and late (activation of MAP kinases) phase of growth factor signaling. Our results here unveil a novel role for flotillin-1 as a scaffolding factor in the regulation of classical MAP kinase signaling. Furthermore, our results imply that other receptor-tyrosine kinases may also rely on flotillin-1 upon activation, thus suggesting a general role for flotillin-1 as a novel factor in receptor-tyrosine kinase/MAP kinase signaling.
Project description:Aberrant expression, activation, and down-regulation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) have causal roles in many human cancers, and post-translational modifications including phosphorylation and ubiquitination and protein-protein interactions directly modulate EGFR function. Quantitative mass spectrometric analyses including selected reaction monitoring (also known as multiple reaction monitoring) were applied to the EGFR and associated proteins. In response to epidermal growth factor (EGF) stimulation of cells, phosphorylations at EGFR Ser(991) and Tyr(998) accumulated more slowly than at receptor sites involved in RAS-ERK signaling. Phosphorylation-deficient mutant receptors S991A and Y998F activated ERK in response to EGF but were impaired for receptor endocytosis. Consistent with these results, the mutant receptors retained a network of interactions with known signaling proteins including EGF-stimulated binding to the adaptor GRB2. Compared with wild type EGFR the Y998F variant had diminished EGF-stimulated interaction with the ubiquitin E3 ligase CBL, and the S991A variant had decreased associated ubiquitin. The endocytosis-defective mutant receptors were found to have elevated phosphorylation at positions Ser(1039) and Thr(1041). These residues reside in a serine/threonine-rich region of the receptor previously implicated in p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase-dependent stress/cytokine-induced EGFR internalization and recycling (Zwang, Y., and Yarden, Y. (2006) p38 MAP kinase mediates stress-induced internalization of EGFR: implications for cancer chemotherapy. EMBO J. 25, 4195-4206). EGF-induced phosphorylations at Ser(1039) and Thr(1041) were blocked by treatment of cells with SB-202190, a selective inhibitor of p38. These results suggest that coordinated phosphorylation of EGFR involving sites Tyr(998), Ser(991), Ser(1039), and Thr(1041) governs the trafficking of EGF receptors. This reinforces the notion that EGFR function is manifest through spatially and temporally controlled protein-protein interactions and phosphorylations.
Project description:Signaling by epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) must be controlled tightly because aberrant EGFR activity may cause cell transformation. Receptor-associated late transducer (RALT) is a feedback inhibitor of EGFR whose genetic ablation in the mouse causes phenotypes due to EGFR-driven excess cell proliferation. RALT inhibits EGFR catalytic activation by docking onto EGFR kinase domain. We report here an additional mechanism of EGFR suppression mediated by RALT, demonstrating that RALT-bound EGF receptors undergo endocytosis and eventual degradation into lysosomes. Moreover, RALT rescues the endocytic deficit of EGFR mutants unable to undergo either endocytosis (Dc214) or degradation (Y1045F) and mediates endocytosis via a domain distinct from that responsible for EGFR catalytic suppression. Consistent with providing a scaffolding function for endocytic proteins, RALT drives EGFR endocytosis by binding to AP-2 and Intersectins. These data suggest a model in which binding of RALT to EGFR integrates suppression of EGFR kinase with receptor endocytosis and degradation, leading to durable repression of EGFR signaling.
Project description:Flotillin-1 and flotillin-2 co-assemble into plasma membrane microdomains that are involved in the endocytosis of molecules such as glycosyl phosphatidylinositol (GPI)-linked proteins. Previous studies suggest that budding of flotillin microdomains from the plasma membrane is a tightly regulated process. Here, we demonstrate that endocytosis of flotillins is regulated by the Src family kinase Fyn. The Src kinase inhibitor PP2 prevents EGF-induced flotillin internalisation, and EGF-induced internalisation does not occur in SYF cells lacking Src, Yes and Fyn. Expression of Fyn, but not Src or Yes, restores EGF-induced internalisation in SYF cells. Expression of an active form of Fyn but not other Src kinases is sufficient to induce redistribution of flotillins from the plasma membrane to late endosomes and lysosomes. Using two partial Fyn constructs that form a functional kinase upon addition of rapamycin to cells, we show that flotillin internalisation from the plasma membrane occurs shortly after Fyn activation. Tyr160 in flotillin-1 and Tyr163 in flotillin-2 are directly phosphorylated by Fyn, and mutation of these residues to phenylalanine prevents Fyn-induced flotillin internalisation. Uptake of the GPI-linked protein CD59 is reduced by expression of the phenylalanine-mutated flotillins. These data establish uptake of flotillin microdomains as a tyrosine-kinase-regulated endocytic process.
Project description:Flotillin-1 and flotillin-2 are two homologous and ubiquitously expressed proteins that are involved in signal transduction and membrane trafficking. Recent studies have reported that flotillins promote breast cancer progression, thus making them interesting targets for breast cancer treatment. In the present study, we have investigated the underlying molecular mechanisms of flotillins in breast cancer.Human adenocarcinoma MCF7 breast cancer cells were stably depleted of flotillins by means of lentivirus mediated short hairpin RNAs. Western blotting, immunofluorescence and quantitative real-time PCR were used to analyze the expression of proteins of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) family. Western blotting was used to investigate the effect of EGFR stimulation or inhibition as well as phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibition on mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling. Rescue experiments were performed by stable transfection of RNA intereference resistant flotillin proteins.We here show that stable knockdown of flotillin-1 in MCF7 cells resulted in upregulation of EGFR mRNA and protein expression and hyperactivation of MAPK signaling, whereas ErbB2 and ErbB3 expression were not affected. Treatment of the flotillin knockdown cells with an EGFR inhibitor reduced the MAPK signaling, demonstrating that the increased EGFR expression and activity is the cause of the increased signaling. Stable ectopic expression of flotillins in the knockdown cells reduced the increased EGFR expression, demonstrating a direct causal relationship between flotillin-1 expression and EGFR amount. Furthermore, the upregulation of EGFR was dependent on the PI3K signaling pathway which is constitutively active in MCF7 cells, and PI3K inhibition resulted in reduced EGFR expression.This study demonstrates that flotillins may not be suitable as cancer therapy targets in cells that carry certain other oncogenic mutations such as PI3K activating mutations, as unexpected effects are prone to emerge upon flotillin knockdown which may even facilitate cancer cell growth and proliferation.
Project description:The actin-binding protein filamin A (FLNa) affects the intracellular trafficking of various classes of receptors and has a potential role in oncogenesis. However, it is unclear whether FLNa regulates the signaling capacity and/or down-regulation of the activated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). Here it is shown that partial knockdown of FLNa gene expression blocked ligand-induced EGFR responses in metastatic human melanomas. To gain greater insights into the role of FLNa in EGFR activation and intracellular sorting, we used M2 melanoma cells that lack endogenous FLNa and a subclone in which human FLNa cDNA has been stably reintroduced (M2A7 cells). Both tyrosine phosphorylation and ubiquitination of EGFR were significantly lower in epidermal growth factor (EGF)-stimulated M2 cells when compared with M2A7 cells. Moreover, the lack of FLNa interfered with EGFR interaction with the ubiquitin ligase c-Cbl. M2 cells exhibited marked resistance to EGF-induced receptor degradation, which was very active in M2A7 cells. Despite comparable rates of EGF-mediated receptor endocytosis, internalized EGFR colocalized with the lysosomal marker lysosome-associated membrane protein-1 in M2A7 cells but not M2 cells, in which EGFR was found to be sequestered in large vesicles and subsequently accumulated in punctated perinuclear structures after EGF stimulation. These results suggest the requirement of FLNa for efficient EGFR kinase activation and the sorting of endocytosed receptors into the degradation pathway.
Project description:Aberrant expression, activation, and stabilization of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) are causally associated with several human cancers. Post-translational modifications and protein-protein interactions directly modulate the signaling and trafficking of the EGFR. Activated EGFR is internalized by endocytosis and then either recycled back to the cell surface or degraded in the lysosome. EGFR internalization and recycling also occur in response to stresses that activate p38 MAP kinase. Mass spectrometry was applied to comprehensively analyze the phosphorylation, ubiquitination, and protein-protein interactions of wild type and endocytosis-defective EGFR variants before and after internalization in response to EGF ligand and stress. Prior to internalization, EGF-stimulated EGFR accumulated ubiquitin at 7 K residues and phosphorylation at 7 Y sites and at S(1104). Following internalization, these modifications diminished and there was an accumulation of S/T phosphorylations. EGFR internalization and many but not all of the EGF-induced S/T phosphorylations were also stimulated by anisomycin-induced cell stress, which was not associated with receptor ubiquitination or elevated Y phosphorylation. EGFR protein interactions were dramatically modulated by ligand, internalization, and stress. In response to EGF, different E3 ubiquitin ligases became maximally associated with EGFR before (CBL, HUWE1, and UBR4) or after (ITCH) internalization, whereas CBLB was distinctively most highly EGFR associated following anisomycin treatment. Adaptin subunits of AP-1 and AP-2 clathrin adaptor complexes also became EGFR associated in response to EGF and anisomycin stress. Mutations preventing EGFR phosphorylation at Y(998) or in the S(1039) region abolished or greatly reduced EGFR interactions with AP-2 and AP-1, and impaired receptor trafficking. These results provide new insight into spatial, temporal, and mechanistic aspects of EGFR regulation.
Project description:The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) regulates normal growth and differentiation, but dysregulation of the receptor or one of the EGFR ligands is involved in the pathogenesis of many cancers. There are eight ligands for EGFR, however most of the research into trafficking of the receptor after ligand activation focuses on the effect of epidermal growth factor (EGF) and transforming growth factor-? (TGF-?). For a long time it was believed that clathrin-mediated endocytosis was the major pathway for internalization of the receptor, but recent work suggests that different pathways exist. Here we show that clathrin ablation completely inhibits internalization of EGF- and TGF-?-stimulated receptor, however the inhibition of receptor internalization in cells treated with heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor (HB-EGF) or betacellulin (BTC) was only partial. In contrast, clathrin knockdown fully inhibits EGFR degradation after all ligands tested. Furthermore, inhibition of dynamin function blocked EGFR internalization after stimulation with all ligands. Knocking out a number of clathrin-independent dynamin-dependent pathways of internalization had no effect on the ligand-induced endocytosis of the EGFR. We suggest that EGF and TGF-? lead to EGFR endocytosis mainly via the clathrin-mediated pathway. Furthermore, we suggest that HB-EGF and BTC also lead to EGFR endocytosis via a clathrin-mediated pathway, but can additionally use an unidentified internalization pathway or better recruit the small amount of clathrin remaining after clathrin knockdown.
Project description:Activation of epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor (EGFR) leads to its interaction with Grb2, a dual-function adapter mediating both signaling through Ras and receptor endocytosis. We used time-lapse three-dimensional imaging by spinning disk confocal microscopy to analyze trafficking of EGFR and Grb2 in living HeLa cells stimulated with low, physiological concentrations of EGFR ligands. Endogenous Grb2 was replaced in these cells by Grb2 fused to yellow fluorescent protein (YFP). After transient residence in the plasma membrane, Rhodamine-conjugated EGF (EGF-Rh) and Grb2-YFP were rapidly internalized and accumulated in endosomes. Quantitative image analysis revealed that on average two Grb2-YFP molecules were colocalized with one EGF-Rh in cells stimulated with 2 ng/ml EGF-Rh, and the excess of Grb2-YFP over EGF-Rh was even higher when a receptor-saturating concentration of EGF-Rh was used. Therefore, we hypothesize that a single EGFR molecule can be simultaneously associated with functionally distinct Grb2 interaction partners during and after endocytosis. Continuous presence of Grb2-YFP in endosomes was also observed when EGFR was activated by transforming growth factor-α and amphiregulin, suggesting that endosomal EGFRs remain ligand occupied and signaling competent, despite the fact that these growth factors are thought to dissociate from the receptor at acidic pH. The prolonged localization and activity of EGFR-Grb2 complexes in endosomes correlated with the sustained activation of extracellular stimulus-regulated kinase 1/2, suggesting that endosomal EGFRs contribute significantly to this signaling pathway. We propose that endosomal EGFRs function to extend signaling in time and space to compensate for rapid downregulation of surface EGFRs in cells with low receptor expression levels.
Project description:Stress exposure triggers ligand-independent EGF receptor (EGFR) endocytosis, but its post-endocytic fate and role in regulating signalling are unclear. We show that the p38 MAP kinase-dependent, EGFR tyrosine kinase (TK)-independent EGFR internalization induced by ultraviolet light C (UVC) or the cancer therapeutic cisplatin, is followed by diversion from the canonical endocytic pathway. Instead of lysosomal degradation or plasma membrane recycling, EGFR accumulates in a subset of LBPA-rich perinuclear multivesicular bodies (MVBs) distinct from those carrying EGF-stimulated EGFR. Stress-internalized EGFR co-segregates with exogenously expressed pre-melanosomal markers OA1 and fibrillar PMEL, following early endosomal sorting by the actin polymerization-promoting WASH complex. Stress-internalized EGFR is retained intracellularly by continued p38 activity in a mechanism involving ubiquitin-independent, ESCRT/ALIX-dependent incorporation onto intraluminal vesicles (ILVs) of MVBs. In contrast to the internalization-independent EGF-stimulated activation, UVC/cisplatin-triggered EGFR activation depends on EGFR internalization and intracellular retention. EGFR signalling from this MVB subpopulation delays apoptosis and might contribute to chemoresistance.
Project description:Upon activation, the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor becomes phosphorylated and triggers a vast signaling network that has profound effects on cell growth. The EGF receptor is observed to assemble into clusters after ligand binding and tyrosine kinase autophosphorylation, but the role of these assemblies in the receptor signaling pathway remains unclear. To address this question, we measured the phosphorylation of EGFR when the EGF ligand was anchored onto laterally mobile and immobile surfaces. We found that cells generated clusters of ligand-receptor complex on mobile EGF surfaces, and displayed a lower ratio of phosphorylated EGFR to EGF when compared to immobilized EGF that is unable to cluster. This result was verified by tuning the lateral assembly of ligand-receptor complexes on the surface of living cells using patterned supported lipid bilayers. Nanoscale metal lines fabricated into the supported membrane constrained lipid diffusion and EGF receptor assembly into micron and sub-micron scale corrals. Single cell analysis indicated that clustering impacts EGF receptor activation, and larger clusters (>1 ?m(2)) of ligand-receptor complex generated lower EGF receptor phosphorylation per ligand than smaller assemblies (<1 ?m(2)) in HCC1143 cells that were engaged to ligand-functionalized surfaces. We investigated the mechanism of EGFR clustering by treating cells with compounds that disrupt the cytoskeleton (Latrunculin B), clathrin-mediated endocytosis (Pitstop2), and inhibit EGFR activation (Gefitinib). These results help elucidate the nature of large-scale EGFR clustering, thus underscoring the general significance of receptor spatial organization in tuning biochemical function.