Regulation of Hippo pathway transcription factor TEAD by p38 MAPK-induced cytoplasmic translocation.
ABSTRACT: The Hippo pathway controls organ size and tissue homeostasis, with deregulation leading to cancer. The core Hippo components in mammals are composed of the upstream serine/threonine kinases Mst1/2, MAPK4Ks and Lats1/2. Inactivation of these upstream kinases leads to dephosphorylation, stabilization, nuclear translocation and thus activation of the major functional transducers of the Hippo pathway, YAP and its paralogue TAZ. YAP/TAZ are transcription co-activators that regulate gene expression primarily through interaction with the TEA domain DNA-binding family of transcription factors (TEAD). The current paradigm for regulation of this pathway centres on phosphorylation-dependent nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of YAP/TAZ through a complex network of upstream components. However, unlike other transcription factors, such as SMAD, NF-?B, NFAT and STAT, the regulation of TEAD nucleocytoplasmic shuttling has been largely overlooked. In the present study, we show that environmental stress promotes TEAD cytoplasmic translocation via p38 MAPK in a Hippo-independent manner. Importantly, stress-induced TEAD inhibition predominates YAP-activating signals and selectively suppresses YAP-driven cancer cell growth. Our data reveal a mechanism governing TEAD nucleocytoplasmic shuttling and show that TEAD localization is a critical determinant of Hippo signalling output.
Project description:Nucleocytoplasmic distribution of Yap/TAZ is regulated by the Hippo pathway and the cytoskeleton. While interactions with cytosolic and nuclear "retention factors" (14-3-3 and TEAD) are known to control their localization, fundamental aspects of Yap/TAZ shuttling remain undefined. It is unclear if translocation occurs only by passive diffusion or via mediated transport, and neither the potential nuclear localization and efflux signals (NLS, NES) nor their putative regulation have been identified. Here we show that TAZ cycling is a mediated process and identify the underlying NLS and NES. The C-terminal NLS, representing a new class of import motifs, is necessary and sufficient for efficient nuclear uptake via a RAN-independent mechanism. RhoA activity directly stimulates this import. The NES lies within the TEAD-binding domain and can be masked by TEAD, thereby preventing efflux. Thus, we describe a RhoA-regulated NLS, a TEAD-regulated NES and propose an improved model of nucleocytoplasmic TAZ shuttling beyond "retention".
Project description:Transcriptional enhanced associate domain (TEAD) transcription factors play important roles during development, cell proliferation, regeneration, and tissue homeostasis. TEAD integrates with and coordinates various signal transduction pathways including Hippo, Wnt, transforming growth factor beta (TGF?), and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) pathways. TEAD deregulation affects well-established cancer genes such as KRAS, BRAF, LKB1, NF2, and MYC, and its transcriptional output plays an important role in tumor progression, metastasis, cancer metabolism, immunity, and drug resistance. To date, TEADs have been recognized to be key transcription factors of the Hippo pathway. Therefore, most studies are focused on the Hippo kinases and YAP/TAZ, whereas the Hippo-dependent and Hippo-independent regulators and regulations governing TEAD only emerged recently. Deregulation of the TEAD transcriptional output plays important roles in tumor progression and serves as a prognostic biomarker due to high correlation with clinicopathological parameters in human malignancies. In addition, discovering the molecular mechanisms of TEAD, such as post-translational modifications and nucleocytoplasmic shuttling, represents an important means of modulating TEAD transcriptional activity. Collectively, this review highlights the role of TEAD in multistep-tumorigenesis by interacting with upstream oncogenic signaling pathways and controlling downstream target genes, which provides unprecedented insight and rationale into developing TEAD-targeted anticancer therapeutics.
Project description:To investigate the role of Hippo pathway signaling during vertebrate development transgenic zebrafish lines were generated and validated to dynamically monitor and manipulate Yap/Taz-Tead activity. Spatial and temporal analysis of Yap/Taz-Tead activity suggested the importance of Hippo signaling during cardiac precursor migration and other developmental processes. When the transcriptional co-activators, Yap and Taz were restricted from interacting with DNA-binding Tead transcription factors through expression of a dominant negative transgene, cardiac precursors failed to migrate completely to the midline resulting in strong cardia bifida. Yap/Taz-Tead activity reporters also allowed us to investigate upstream and downstream factors known to regulate Hippo signaling output in Drosophila. While Crumbs mutations in Drosophila eye disc epithelia increase nuclear translocation and activity of Yorkie (the fly homolog of Yap/Taz), zebrafish crb2a mutants lacked nuclear Yap positive cells and down-regulated Yap/Taz-Tead activity reporters in the eye epithelia, despite the loss of apical-basal cell polarity in those cells. However, as an example of evolutionary conservation, the Tondu-domain containing protein Vestigial-like 4b (Vgll4b) was found to down-regulate endogenous Yap/Taz-Tead activity in the retinal pigment epithelium, similar to Drosophila Tgi in imaginal discs. In conclusion, the Yap/Taz-Tead activity reporters revealed the dynamics of Yap/Taz-Tead signaling and novel insights into Hippo pathway regulation for vertebrates. These studies highlight the utility of this transgenic tool-suite for ongoing analysis into the mechanisms of Hippo pathway regulation and the consequences of signaling output.
Project description:The Hippo pathway is a tumor suppressor pathway that is implicated in the regulation of organ size. The pathway has three components: the upstream regulatory factors, the kinase core, and the downstream transcriptional machinery, which consists of YAP, TAZ (transcription co-activators) and TEAD (transcription factor). Formation of YAP/TAZ-TEAD complexes leads to the transcription of growth-promoting genes. Herein, we report the crystal structure of TAZ-TEAD4 complex, which reveals two binding modes. The first is similar to the published YAP-TEAD structure. The second is a unique binding mode, whereby two molecules of TAZ bind to and bridge two molecules of TEAD4. We validated the latter using cross-linking and multi-angle light scattering. Using siRNA, we showed that TAZ knockdown leads to a decrease in TEAD4 dimerization. Lastly, results from luciferase assays, using YAP/TAZ transfected or knockdown cells, give support to the non-redundancy of YAP/TAZ co-activators in regulating gene expression in the Hippo pathway.
Project description:The Hippo pathway plays major roles in development, regeneration, and cancer. Its activity is tightly regulated by both diffusible chemical ligands and mechanical stimuli. The pathway consists of a series of kinases that can control the sub-cellular localization and stability of YAP or TAZ, homologous transcriptional co-factors. Caveolae, small (60-100 nm) bulb-like invaginations of the plasma membrane, are comprised predominantly of caveolin and cavin proteins and can respond to mechanical stimuli. Here, we show that YAP/TAZ, the major transcriptional mediators of the Hippo pathway, are critical for expression of caveolae components and therefore caveolae formation in both mammalian cells and zebrafish. In essence, without YAP/TAZ, the cell loses an entire organelle. CAVEOLIN1 and CAVIN1, the two essential caveolar genes, are direct target genes of YAP/TAZ, regulated via TEA domain (TEAD) transcription factors. Notably, YAP/TAZ become nuclear enriched and facilitate target gene transcription in cells with diminished levels of caveolae. Furthermore, caveolar-mediated shear stress response activates YAP/TAZ. These data link caveolae to Hippo signaling in the context of cellular responses to mechanical stimuli and suggest activity-based feedback regulation between components of caveolae and the outputs of the Hippo pathway.
Project description:The Hippo signaling pathway controls cell-cell contact, cell proliferation, as well as organ size by integrating changes in the cellular microenvironment. In recent years, the pivotal role of Hippo signaling in cancers has been well recognized. Inhibition of the pathway promotes the translocation of the major Hippo pathway effectors, the yes-associated protein (YAP) and its paralog TAZ, to the nucleus, where they interact with the transcription factor family transcriptional enhancer associate domain (TEAD), thus coactivating the expression of downstream genes, leading to cell transformation, tissue overgrowth, and tumor development. Therefore, the interruption of the YAP-TEAD transcriptional complex represents a novel opportunity for the treatment of cancer. Here, we established a fluorescence polarization (FP)-based assay for the identification and evaluation of YAP-TEAD protein-protein interface (PPI) inhibitors at the YAP ?-loop binding region of TEAD, which is also called interface 3?at the YAP-TEAD binding surface. Furthermore, a patented small molecule (Patent-22) was evaluated by the FP assay, which confirmed that it was a YAP-TEAD PPI inhibitor at interface 3. Possessing great application value, this FP method is reliable, robust, and economical for inhibitor assessment and drug discovery.
Project description:YAP (Yes-associated protein) and TAZ (transcriptional coactivator with PDZ-binding motif) are major downstream effectors of the Hippo pathway that influences tissue homeostasis, organ size, and cancer development. Aberrant hyperactivation of YAP/TAZ causes tissue overgrowth and tumorigenesis, whereas their inactivation impairs tissue development and regeneration. Dynamic and precise control of YAP/TAZ activity is thus important to ensure proper physiological regulation and homeostasis of the cells. Here, we show that YAP/TAZ activation results in activation of their negative regulators, LATS1/2 (large tumor suppressor 1/2) kinases, to constitute a negative feedback loop of the Hippo pathway in both cultured cells and mouse tissues. YAP/TAZ in complex with the transcription factor TEAD (TEA domain family member) directly induce LATS2 expression. Furthermore, YAP/TAZ also stimulate the kinase activity of LATS1/2 through inducing NF2 (neurofibromin 2). This feedback regulation is responsible for the transient activation of YAP upon lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) stimulation and the inhibition of YAP-induced cell migration. Thus, this LATS-mediated feedback loop provides an efficient mechanism to establish the robustness and homeostasis of YAP/TAZ regulation.
Project description:The Hippo signaling pathway, which is implicated in the regulation of organ size, has emerged as a potential target for the development of cancer therapeutics. YAP, TAZ (transcription co-activators) and TEAD (transcription factor) are the downstream transcriptional machinery and effectors of the pathway. Formation of the YAP/TAZ-TEAD complex leads to transcription of growth-promoting genes. Conversely, disrupting the interactions of the complex decreases cell proliferation. Herein, we screened a 1000-member fragment library using Thermal Shift Assay and identified a hit fragment. We confirmed its binding at the YAP/TAZ-TEAD interface by X-ray crystallography, and showed that it occupies the same hydrophobic pocket as a conserved phenylalanine of YAP/TAZ. This hit fragment serves as a scaffold for the development of compounds that have the potential to disrupt YAP/TAZ-TEAD interactions. Structure-activity relationship studies and computational modeling were also carried out to identify more potent compounds that may bind at this validated druggable binding site.
Project description:The Hippo pathway is a critical transcriptional signaling pathway that regulates cell growth, proliferation and organ development. The transcriptional enhanced associate domain (TEAD) protein family consists of four paralogous transcription factors that function to modulate gene expression in response to the Hippo signaling pathway. Transcriptional activation of these proteins occurs upon binding to the co-activator YAP/TAZ whose entry into the nucleus is regulated by Lats1/2 kinase. In recent years, it has become apparent that the dysregulation and/or overexpression of Hippo pathway effectors is implicated in a wide range of cancers, including prostate, gastric and liver cancer. A large body of work has been dedicated to understanding the therapeutic potential of modulating the phosphorylation and localization of YAP/TAZ. However, YAP/TAZ are considered to be natively unfolded and may be intractable as drug targets. Therefore, TEAD proteins present themselves as an excellent therapeutic target for intervention of the Hippo pathway. This review summarizes the functional role of TEAD proteins in cancer and assesses the therapeutic potential of antagonizing TEAD function in vivo.
Project description:The Hippo pathway has emerged as a key signaling pathway that regulates a broad range of biological functions, and dysregulation of the Hippo pathway is a feature of a variety of cancers. Given this, some have suggested that disrupting the interaction of the Hippo core component YAP and its paralog TAZ with transcriptional factor TEAD may be an effective strategy for cancer therapy. However, there are currently no clinically available drugs targeting the YAP/TAZ-TEAD interaction for cancer treatment. To facilitate screens for small molecule compounds that disrupt the YAP-TEAD interaction, we have developed the first ultra-bright NanoLuc biosensor to quantify YAP/TAZ-TEAD protein-protein interaction (PPI) both in living cells and also in vitro using biosensor fusion proteins purified from bacteria. Using this biosensor, we have performed an in vitro high throughput screen (HTS) of small molecule compounds and have identified and validated the drug Celastrol as a novel inhibitor of YAP/TAZ-TEAD interaction. We have also demonstrated that Celastrol can inhibit cancer cell proliferation, transformation, and cell migration. In this study, we describe a new inhibitor of the YAP/TAZ-TEAD interaction warranting further investigation and offer a novel biosensor tool for the discovery of other new Hippo-targeting drugs in future work.