Dephosphorylated parafibromin is a transcriptional coactivator of the Wnt/Hedgehog/Notch pathways

Nat Commun. 2016 Sep 21;7:12887. doi: 10.1038/ncomms12887.


Evolutionally conserved Wnt, Hedgehog (Hh) and Notch morphogen pathways play essential roles in the development, homeostasis and pathogenesis of multicellular organisms. Nevertheless, mechanisms that intracellularly coordinate these signal inputs remain poorly understood. Here we found that parafibromin, a component of the PAF complex, competitively interacts with β-catenin and Gli1, thereby potentiating transactivation of Wnt- and Hh-target genes in a mutually exclusive manner. Parafibromin also binds to the Notch intracellular domain (NICD), enabling concerted activation of Wnt- and Notch-target genes. The transcriptional platform function of parafibromin is potentiated by tyrosine dephosphorylation, mediated by SHP2 phosphatase, while it is attenuated by tyrosine phosphorylation, mediated by PTK6 kinase. Consequently, acute loss of parafibromin in mice disorganizes the normal epithelial architecture of the intestine, which requires coordinated activation/inactivation of Wnt, Hh and/or Notch signalling. Parafibromin integrates and converts signals conveyed by these morphogen pathways into appropriate transcriptional outputs in a tyrosine phosphorylation/dephosphorylation-regulated manner.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Gene Deletion
  • Hedgehog Proteins / genetics
  • Hedgehog Proteins / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Plasmids
  • Receptors, Notch / genetics
  • Receptors, Notch / metabolism*
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / genetics
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / metabolism*
  • Wnt Proteins / genetics
  • Wnt Proteins / metabolism*


  • CDC73 protein, human
  • HRPT2 protein, mouse
  • Hedgehog Proteins
  • Receptors, Notch
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Wnt Proteins