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Recycling of MUC1 is dependent on its palmitoylation.

Kinlough C.L., McMahan R.J., Poland P.A., Bruns J.B., Harkleroad K.L., Stremple R.J., Kashlan O.B., Weixel K.M., Weisz O.A., Hughey R.P.

MUC1 is a mucin-like transmembrane protein expressed on the apical surface of epithelia, where it protects the cell surface. The cytoplasmic domain has numerous sites for phosphorylation and docking of proteins involved in signal transduction. In a previous study, we showed that the cytoplasmic YXXphi motif Y20HPM and the tyrosine-phosphorylated Y60TNP motif are required for MUC1 clathrin-mediated endocytosis through binding AP-2 and Grb2, respectively (Kinlough, C. L., Poland, P. A., Bruns, J. B., Harkleroad, K. L., and Hughey, R. P. (2004) J. Biol. Chem. 279, 53071-53077). Palmitoylation of transmembrane proteins can affect their membrane trafficking, and the MUC1 sequence CQC3RRK at the boundary of the transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains mimics reported site(s) of S-palmitoylation. [3H]Palmitate labeling of Chinese hamster ovary cells expressing MUC1 with mutations in CQC3RRK revealed that MUC1 is dually palmitoylated at the CQC motif independent of RRK. Lack of palmitoylation did not affect the cold detergent solubility profile of a chimera (Tac ectodomain and MUC1 transmembrane and cytoplasmic domains), the rate of chimera delivery to the cell surface, or its half-life. Calculation of rate constants for membrane trafficking of wild-type and mutant Tac-MUC1 indicated that the lack of palmitoylation blocked recycling, but not endocytosis, and caused the chimera to accumulate in a EGFP-Rab11-positive endosomal compartment. Mutations CQC/AQA and Y20N inhibited Tac-MUC1 co-immunoprecipitation with AP-1, although mutant Y20N had reduced rates of both endocytosis and recycling, but a normal subcellular distribution. The double mutant chimera AQA+Y20N had reduced endocytosis and recycling rates and accumulated in EGFP-Rab11-positive endosomes, indicating that palmitoylation is the dominant feature modulating MUC1 recycling from endosomes back to the plasma membrane.

J. Biol. Chem. 281:12112-12122(2006) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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