RLP, a novel Ras-like protein, is an immediate-early transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) target gene that negatively regulates transcriptional activity induced by TGF-β

Ester Piek*, Maarten Van Dinther, W. Tony Parks, John M. Sallee, Erwin P. Böttinger, Anita B. Roberts, Peter Ten Dijke

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

We have described previously the use of microarray technology to identify novel target genes of TGF-β (transforming growth factor-β) signalling in mouse embryo fibroblasts deficient in Smad2 or Smad3 [Yang, Piek, Zavadil, Liang, Xie, Heyer, Pavlidis, Kucherlapati, Roberts and Böttinger (2003) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 100, 10269-10274]. Among the TGF-β target genes identified, a novel gene with sequence homology to members of the Ras superfamily was identified, which we have designated as RLP (Ras-like protein). RLP is a Smad3-dependent immediate-early TGF-β target gene, its expression being induced within 45 min. Bone morphogenetic proteins also induce expression of RLP, whereas epidermal growth factor and phorbol ester PMA suppress TGF-β-induced expression of RLP. Northern-blot analysis revealed that RLP was strongly expressed in heart, brain and kidney, and below the detection level in spleen and skeletal muscles. At the protein level, RLP is approx. 30% homologous with members of the Ras superfamily, particularly in domains characteristic for small GTPases. However, compared with prototypic Ras, RLP contains a modified P-loop, lacks the consensus G2 loop and the C-terminal prenylation site and harbours amino acid substitutions at positions that render prototypic Ras oncogenic. However, RLP does not have transforming activity, does not affect phosphorylation of mitogen-activated protein kinase and is unable to bind GTP or GDP. RLP was found to associate with certain subtypes of the TGF-β receptor family, raising the possibility that RLP plays a role in TGF-β signal transduction. Although RLP did not interact with Smads and did not affect TGF-β receptor-induced Smad2 phosphorylation, it inhibited TGF-β-induced transcriptional reporter activation, suggesting that it is a novel negative regulator of TGF-β signalling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-199
Number of pages13
JournalBiochemical Journal
Volume383
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2004

Keywords

  • GTPase
  • Ras
  • Sorting nexin
  • Transcriptional regulation
  • Transforming growth factor-β

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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