Phosphorylation-dependent protein ubiquitylation and degradation provides an irreversible mechanism to terminate protein kinase signaling. Here, we report that mammary epithelial cells require cullin-5-RING-E3-ubiquitin-ligase complexes (Cul5-CRLs) to prevent transformation by a Src-Cas signaling pathway. Removal of Cul5 stimulates growth-factor-independent growth and migration, membrane dynamics and colony dysmorphogenesis, which are all dependent on the endogenous tyrosine kinase Src. Src is activated in Cul5-deficient cells, but Src activation alone is not sufficient to cause transformation. We found that Cul5 and Src together stimulate degradation of the Src substrate p130Cas (Crk-associated substrate). Phosphorylation stimulates Cas binding to the Cul5-CRL adaptor protein SOCS6 and consequent proteasome-dependent degradation. Cas is necessary for the transformation of Cul5-deficient cells. Either knockdown of SOCS6 or use of a degradation-resistant Cas mutant stimulates membrane ruffling, but not other aspects of transformation. Our results show that endogenous Cul5 suppresses epithelial cell transformation by several pathways, including inhibition of Src-Cas-induced ruffling through SOCS6.
Keywords: Cas; Cul5; Cullin 5; Migration; Src; Transformation; Ubiquitin.