NYAP: a phosphoprotein family that links PI3K to WAVE1 signalling in neurons

EMBO J. 2011 Sep 23;30(23):4739-54. doi: 10.1038/emboj.2011.348.


The phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway has been extensively studied in neuronal function and morphogenesis. However, the precise molecular mechanisms of PI3K activation and its downstream signalling in neurons remain elusive. Here, we report the identification of the Neuronal tYrosine-phosphorylated Adaptor for the PI 3-kinase (NYAP) family of phosphoproteins, which is composed of NYAP1, NYAP2, and Myosin16/NYAP3. The NYAPs are expressed predominantly in developing neurons. Upon stimulation with Contactin5, the NYAPs are tyrosine phosphorylated by Fyn. Phosphorylated NYAPs interact with PI3K p85 and activate PI3K, Akt, and Rac1. Moreover, the NYAPs interact with the WAVE1 complex which mediates remodelling of the actin cytoskeleton after activation by PI3K-produced PIP(3) and Rac1. By simultaneously interacting with PI3K and the WAVE1 complex, the NYAPs bridge a PI3K-WAVE1 association. Disruption of the NYAP genes in mice affects brain size and neurite elongation. In conclusion, the NYAPs activate PI3K and concomitantly recruit the downstream effector WAVE complex to the close vicinity of PI3K and regulate neuronal morphogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing* / genetics
  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing* / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Brain / embryology
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Models, Biological
  • Neocortex* / embryology
  • Neocortex* / metabolism
  • Neocortex* / pathology
  • Neurites / pathology*
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation / physiology
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fyn / metabolism
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Signal Transduction
  • Tyrosine / metabolism
  • Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome Protein Family / metabolism*


  • Actins
  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome Protein Family
  • Tyrosine
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Fyn protein, mouse
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fyn