Smad ubiquitylation regulatory factor 1/2 (Smurf1/2) promotes p53 degradation by stabilizing the E3 ligase MDM2.
ABSTRACT The tumor suppressor p53 protein is tightly regulated by a ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation mechanism. Several E3 ubiquitin ligases, including MDM2 (mouse double minute 2), have been reported to play an essential role in the regulation of p53 stability. However, it remains unclear how the activity of these E3 ligases is regulated. Here, we show that the HECT-type E3 ligase Smurf1/2 (Smad ubiquitylation regulatory factor 1/2) promotes p53 degradation by enhancing the activity of the E3 ligase MDM2. We provide evidence that the role of Smurf1/2 on the p53 stability is not dependent on the E3 activity of Smurf1/2 but rather is dependent on the activity of MDM2. We find that Smurf1/2 stabilizes MDM2 by enhancing the heterodimerization of MDM2 with MDMX, during which Smurf1/2 interacts with MDM2 and MDMX. We finally provide evidence that Smurf1/2 regulates apoptosis through p53. To our knowledge, this is the first report to demonstrate that Smurf1/2 functions as a factor to stabilize MDM2 protein rather than as a direct E3 ligase in regulation of p53 degradation.
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ABSTRACT: The ubiquitin ligase Smad ubiquitination regulatory factor-1 (Smurf1) negatively regulates bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) pathway by ubiquitinating certain signal components for degradation. Thus, it can be an eligible pharmacological target for increasing BMP signal responsiveness. We established a strategy to discover small molecule compounds that block the WW1 domain of Smurf1 from interacting with Smad1/5 by structure based virtual screening, molecular experimental examination and cytological efficacy evaluation. Our selected hits could reserve the protein level of Smad1/5 from degradation by interrupting Smurf1-Smad1/5 interaction and inhibiting Smurf1 mediated ubiquitination of Smad1/5. Further, these compounds increased BMP-2 signal responsiveness and the expression of certain downstream genes, enhanced the osteoblastic activity of myoblasts and osteoblasts. Our work indicates targeting Smurf1 for inhibition could be an accessible strategy to discover BMP-sensitizers that might be applied in future clinical treatments of bone disorders such as osteopenia.Scientific Reports 01/2014; 4:4965. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Attempts to target mutant KRAS have been unsuccessful. Here, we report the identification of Smad ubiquitination regulatory factor 2 (SMURF2) and UBCH5 as a critical E3:E2 complex maintaining KRAS protein stability. Loss of SMURF2 either by small interfering RNA/short hairpin RNA (siRNA/shRNA) or by overexpression of a catalytically inactive mutant causes KRAS degradation, whereas overexpression of wild-type SMURF2 enhances KRAS stability. Importantly, mutant KRAS is more susceptible to SMURF2 loss where protein half-life decreases from >12 hours in control siRNA-treated cells to <3 hours on Smurf2 silencing, whereas only marginal differences were noted for wild-type protein. This loss of mutant KRAS could be rescued by overexpressing a siRNA-resistant wild-type SMURF2. Our data further show that SMURF2 monoubiquitinates UBCH5 at lysine 144 to form an active complex required for efficient degradation of a RAS-family E3, β-transducing repeat containing protein 1 (β-TrCP1). Conversely, β-TrCP1 is accumulated on SMURF2 loss, leading to increased KRAS degradation. Therefore, as expected, β-TrCP1 knockdown following Smurf2 siRNA treatment rescues mutant KRAS loss. Further, we identify two conserved proline (P) residues in UBCH5 critical for SMURF2 interaction; mutation of either of these P to alanine also destabilizes KRAS. As a proof of principle, we demonstrate that Smurf2 silencing reduces the clonogenic survival in vitro and prolongs tumor latency in vivo in cancer cells including mutant KRAS-driven tumors. Taken together, we show that SMURF2:UBCH5 complex is critical in maintaining KRAS protein stability and propose that targeting such complex may be a unique strategy to degrade mutant KRAS to kill cancer cells.Neoplasia (New York, N.Y.) 02/2014; 16(2):115-IN5. · 5.48 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Neddylation, the covalent attachment of ubiquitin-like protein Nedd8, of the Cullin-RING E3 ligase family regulates their ubiquitylation activity. However, regulation of HECT ligases by neddylation has not been reported to date. Here we show that the C2-WW-HECT ligase Smurf1 is activated by neddylation. Smurf1 physically interacts with Nedd8 and Ubc12, forms a Nedd8-thioester intermediate, and then catalyses its own neddylation on multiple lysine residues. Intriguingly, this autoneddylation needs an active site at C426 in the HECT N-lobe. Neddylation of Smurf1 potently enhances ubiquitin E2 recruitment and augments the ubiquitin ligase activity of Smurf1. The regulatory role of neddylation is conserved in human Smurf1 and yeast Rsp5. Furthermore, in human colorectal cancers, the elevated expression of Smurf1, Nedd8, NAE1 and Ubc12 correlates with cancer progression and poor prognosis. These findings provide evidence that neddylation is important in HECT ubiquitin ligase activation and shed new light on the tumour-promoting role of Smurf1.Nature Communications 01/2014; 5:3733. · 10.74 Impact Factor