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EMBO J. 1999 May 17;18(10):2823-35.

Interaction of axin and Dvl-2 proteins regulates Dvl-2-stimulated TCF-dependent transcription.

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  • 1Developmental Biology, Section of Cell Biology and Experimental Pathology, Toby Robins Breakthrough Breast Cancer Research Centre, London, UK.

Abstract

Axin promotes the phosphorylation of beta-catenin by GSK-3beta, leading to beta-catenin degradation. Wnt signals interfere with beta-catenin turnover, resulting in enhanced transcription of target genes through the increased formation of beta-catenin complexes containing TCF transcription factors. Little is known about how GSK-3beta-mediated beta-catenin turnover is regulated in response to Wnt signals. We have explored the relationship between Axin and Dvl-2, a member of the Dishevelled family of proteins that function upstream of GSK-3beta. Expression of Dvl-2 activated TCF-dependent transcription. This was blocked by co-expression of GSK-3beta or Axin. Expression of a 59 amino acid GSK-3beta-binding region from Axin strongly activated transcription in the absence of an upstream signal. Introduction of a point mutation into full-length Axin that prevented GSK-3beta binding also generated a transcriptional activator. When co-expressed, Axin and Dvl-2 co-localized within expressing cells. When Dvl-2 localization was altered using a C-terminal CAAX motif, Axin was also redistributed, suggesting a close association between the two proteins, a conclusion supported by co-immunoprecipitation data. Deletion analysis suggested that Dvl-association determinants within Axin were contained between residues 603 and 810. The association of Axin with Dvl-2 may be important in the transmission of Wnt signals from Dvl-2 to GSK-3beta.

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