Adhesion g protein-coupled receptors: signaling, pharmacology, and mechanisms of activation.
ABSTRACT The adhesion G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are a distinct family of more than 30 receptors in vertebrate genomes. These receptors have been shown to play pivotal roles in a diverse range of biological functions and are characterized by extremely large N termini featuring various adhesion domains capable of mediating cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions. The adhesion GPCR N termini also contain GPCR proteolytic site motifs that undergo autocatalytic cleavage during receptor processing to create mature GPCRs existing as noncovalently attached complexes between the N terminus and transmembrane regions. There is mounting evidence that adhesion GPCRs can couple to G proteins to activate a variety of different downstream signaling pathways. Furthermore, recent studies have demonstrated that adhesion GPCR N termini can bind to multiple ligands, which may differentially activate receptor signaling and/or mediate cell adhesion. In addition, studies on several distinct adhesion GPCRs have revealed that truncations of the N termini result in constitutively active receptors, suggesting a model of receptor activation in which removal of the N terminus may be a key event in stimulating receptor signaling. Because mutations to certain adhesion GPCRs cause human disease and because many members of this receptor family exhibit highly discrete distribution patterns in different tissues, the adhesion GPCRs represent a class of potentially important drug targets that have not yet been exploited. For this reason, understanding the mechanisms of activation for these receptors and elucidating their downstream signaling pathways can provide insights with the potential to lead to novel therapeutic agents.
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ABSTRACT: G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) play a central role in signal transmission, thereby controlling many facets of cellular function. Overwhelming evidence now implicates GPCRs, G proteins and their downstream signaling targets in cancer initiation and progression, where they can influence aberrant cell growth and survival, largely through activation of AKT/mTOR, MAPKs, and Hippo signaling pathways. GPCRs also play critical roles in the invasion and metastasis of cancer cells via activation of Rho GTPases and cytoskeletal changes, and angiogenesis to supply the tumor with nutrients and provide routes for metastasis. Lastly, GPCRs contribute to the establishment and maintenance of a permissive tumor microenvironment. Understanding GPCR involvement in cancer malignancy may help identify novel therapeutic opportunities for cancer prevention and treatment.Current opinion in cell biology 02/2014; 27C:126-135. · 14.15 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The brain-specific angiogenesis inhibitors 1-3 (BAI1-3) comprise a subfamily of adhesion G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). These receptors are highly expressed in the brain and were first studied for their ability to inhibit angiogenesis and tumor formation. Subsequently, BAI1 was found to play roles in apoptotic cell phagocytosis and myoblast fusion. Until recently, however, little was known about the physiological importance of the BAI subfamily in the context of normal brain function. Recent work has provided evidence for key roles of BAI1-3 in the regulation of synaptogenesis and dendritic spine formation. In this review, we summarize the current understanding of the BAI subfamily with regard to downstream signaling pathways, physiological actions, and potential importance as novel drug targets in the treatment of psychiatric and neurological diseases.Trends in Pharmacological Sciences 03/2014; · 9.25 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Identification of prognostic melanoma-associated copy number alterations (CNAs) is still an area of active research. Here, we investigated by high-resolution array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) a cohort of 31 paraffin-preserved primary malignant melanomas (MMs), whose prognosis was not predictable on the basis of conventional histopathological parameters. Although we identified a variety of highly recurrent sites of genomic lesions, the total number of CNAs per patient was not a discriminator of MM outcome. Furthermore, validation of aCGH by quantitative PCR on an extended population of 65 MM samples confirmed the absence of predictive value for the most recurrent CNA loci. Instead, our analysis revealed specific prognostic potential of the frequency of homozygous deletions (representing less than 3% of the total CNAs on average per sample), which was strongly associated with sentinel lymph node (SLN) invasion (P = 0.003), and distant metastasis (P = 0.003). Increased number of homozygous deletions was also indicative of poor patient survival (P = 0.01), both in our samples and in an independent validation of public dataset of primary and metastatic MMs. Moreover, we identified 77 hotspots of minimal common homozygous deletions, enriched in genes involved in cell adhesion processes and cell-communication functions, which preferentially accumulated in primary MMs showing the most severe outcome. Therefore, specific loss of gene loci in regions of minimal homozygous deletion may represent a pivotal type of genomic alteration accumulating during MM progression with potential prognostic implication. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.Genes Chromosomes and Cancer 02/2014; · 3.55 Impact Factor