The three-dimensional structure of the ZAP-70 kinase domain in complex with staurosporine: implications for the design of selective inhibitors

J Biol Chem. 2004 Oct 8;279(41):42818-25. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M407096200. Epub 2004 Jul 29.


The ZAP-70 tyrosine kinase plays a critical role in T cell activation and the immune response and therefore is a logical target for immunomodulatory therapies. Although the crystal structure of the tandem Src homology-2 domains of human ZAP-70 in complex with a peptide derived from the zeta subunit of the T cell receptor has been reported (Hatada, M. H., Lu, X., Laird, E. R., Green, J., Morgenstern, J. P., Lou, M., Marr, C. S., Phillips, T. B., Ram, M. K., Theriault, K., Zoller, M. J., and Karas, J. L. (1995) Nature 377, 32-38), the structure of the kinase domain has been elusive to date. We crystallized and determined the three-dimensional structure of the catalytic subunit of ZAP-70 as a complex with staurosporine to 2.3 A resolution, utilizing an active kinase domain containing residues 327-606 identified by systematic N- and C-terminal truncations. The crystal structure shows that this ZAP-70 kinase domain is in an active-like conformation despite the lack of tyrosine phosphorylation in the activation loop. The unique features of the ATP-binding site, identified by structural and sequence comparison with other kinases, will be useful in the design of ZAP-70-selective inhibitors.

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / chemistry
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Baculoviridae / metabolism
  • Binding Sites
  • COS Cells
  • Catalytic Domain
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Design
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer
  • Humans
  • Models, Chemical
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Peptides / chemistry
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Conformation
  • Protein Folding
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / chemistry*
  • Recombinant Proteins / chemistry
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Staurosporine / pharmacology*
  • Stereoisomerism
  • Time Factors
  • Transfection
  • Tyrosine / chemistry
  • ZAP-70 Protein-Tyrosine Kinase
  • src Homology Domains


  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Peptides
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Tyrosine
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • ZAP-70 Protein-Tyrosine Kinase
  • ZAP70 protein, human
  • Staurosporine

Associated data

  • PDB/1U59