Identification of a druggable protein–protein interaction site between mutant p53 and its stabilizing chaperone DNAJA1

Xin Tong, Dandan Xu, Rama K. Mishra, Ryan D. Jones, Leyu Sun, Gary E. Schiltz, Jie Liao, Guang Yu Yang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

The TP53 gene is the most frequently mutated gene in human cancers, and the majority of TP53 mutations are missense mutations. As a result, these mutant p53 (mutp53) either directly lose wildtype p53 (wtp53) tumor suppressor function or exhibit a dominant negative effect over wtp53. In addition, some mutp53 have acquired new oncogenic function (gain of function). Therefore, targeting mutp53 for its degradation may serve as a promising strategy for cancer prevention and therapy. Based on our previous finding that farnesylated DNAJA1 is a crucial chaperone in maintaining mutp53 stabilization, and by using an in silico approach, we built 3D homology models of human DNAJA1 and mutp53R175H proteins, identified the interacting pocket in the DNAJA1–mutp53R175H complex, and found one critical druggable small molecule binding site in the DNAJA1 glycine/phenylalanine-rich region. We confirmed that the interacting pocket in the DNAJA1–mutp53R175H complex was crucial for stabilizing mutp53R175H using a site-directed mutagenesis approach. We further screened a drug-like library to identify a promising small molecule hit (GY1-22) against the interacting pocket in the DNAJA1–mutp53R175H complex. The GY1-22 compound displayed an effective activity against the DNAJA1–mutp53R175H complex. Treatment with GY1-22 significantly reduced mutp53 protein levels, enhanced Waf1p21 expression, suppressed cyclin D1 expression, and inhibited mutp53-driven pancreatic cancer growth both in vitro and in vivo. Together, our results indicate that the interacting pocket in the DNAJA1–mutp53R175H complex is critical for mutp53’s stability and oncogenic function, and DNAJA1 is a robust therapeutic target for developing the efficient small molecule inhibitors against oncogenic mutp53.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100098
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume296
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Identification of a druggable protein–protein interaction site between mutant p53 and its stabilizing chaperone DNAJA1'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this