Determinants of specificity in TGF-beta signal transduction

Genes Dev. 1998 Jul 15;12(14):2144-52. doi: 10.1101/gad.12.14.2144.

Abstract

Signal transduction by the TGF-beta family involves sets of receptor serine/threonine kinases, Smad proteins that act as receptor substrates, and Smad-associated transcription factors that target specific genes. We have identified discrete structural elements that dictate the selective interactions between receptors and Smads and between Smads and transcription factors in the TGF-beta and BMP pathways. A cluster of four residues in the L45 loop of the type I receptor kinase domain, and a matching set of two residues in the L3 loop of the Smad carboxy-terminal domain establish the specificity of receptor-Smad interactions. A cluster of residues in the highly exposed alpha-helix 2 of the Smad carboxy-terminal domain specify the interaction with the DNA-binding factor Fast1 and, as a result, the gene responses mediated by the pathway. By establishing specific interactions, these determinants keep the TGF-beta and BMP pathways segregated from each other.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Activin Receptors, Type I*
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Binding Sites
  • COS Cells
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / genetics
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / physiology
  • Receptor, Transforming Growth Factor-beta Type I
  • Receptors, Transforming Growth Factor beta / genetics
  • Receptors, Transforming Growth Factor beta / metabolism
  • Receptors, Transforming Growth Factor beta / physiology
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Smad Proteins
  • Smad2 Protein
  • Smad3 Protein
  • Trans-Activators*
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / metabolism*
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Xenopus
  • Xenopus Proteins*

Substances

  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • FOXH1 protein, Xenopus
  • FOXH1 protein, human
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors
  • Foxh1 protein, mouse
  • Receptors, Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • SMAD2 protein, human
  • SMAD3 protein, human
  • Smad Proteins
  • Smad2 Protein
  • Smad2 protein, Xenopus
  • Smad3 Protein
  • Trans-Activators
  • Transcription Factors
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • Xenopus Proteins
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • Activin Receptors, Type I
  • Receptor, Transforming Growth Factor-beta Type I