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Differential regulation of EGF receptor internalization and degradation by multiubiquitination within the kinase domain.

Huang F., Kirkpatrick D., Jiang X., Gygi S.P., Sorkin A.

Ubiquitination of the EGF receptor (EGFR) is believed to play a critical role in regulating both its localization and its stability. To elucidate the role of EGFR ubiquitination, tandem mass spectrometry was used to identify six distinct lysine residues within the kinase domain of the EGFR, which can be conjugated to ubiquitin following growth factor stimulation. Substitution of these lysine residues with arginines resulted in a dramatic decrease in overall ubiquitination but preserved normal tyrosine phosphorylation of EGFR. Ubiquitination-deficient EGFR mutants displayed a severe defect in their turnover rates but were internalized at rates comparable to those of wild-type receptors. Finally, quantitative mass spectrometry demonstrated that more than 50% of all EGFR bound ubiquitin was in the form of polyubiquitin chains, primarily linked through Lys63. Taken together, these data provide direct evidence for the role of EGFR ubiquitination in receptor targeting to the lysosome and implicate Lys63-linked polyubiquitin chains in this sorting process.

Mol. Cell 21:737-748(2006) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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