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EMBO J. 2001 Mar 15;20(6):1232-44.

A novel function for the Tec family tyrosine kinase Itk in activation of beta 1 integrins by the T-cell receptor.

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  • 1Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA.


Stimulation of T cells via the CD3--T-cell receptor (TCR) complex results in rapid increases in beta 1 integrin-mediated adhesion via poorly defined intracellular signaling events. We demonstrate that TCR-mediated activation of beta 1 integrins requires activation of the Tec family tyrosine kinase Itk and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-K)-dependent recruitment of Itk to detergent-insoluble glycosphingolipid-enriched microdomains (DIGs) via binding of the pleckstrin homology domain of Itk to the PI 3-K product PI(3,4,5)-P(3). Activation of PI 3-K and the src family kinase Lck, via stimulation of the CD4 co-receptor, can initiate beta 1 integrin activation that is dependent on Itk function. Targeting of Itk specifically to DIGs, coupled with CD4 stimulation, can also activate beta 1 integrin function independently of TCR stimulation. Changes in beta 1 integrin function mediated by TCR activation of Itk are also accompanied by Itk-dependent modulation of the actin cytoskeleton. Thus, TCR-mediated activation of beta 1 integrins involves membrane relocalization and activation of Itk via coordinate action of PI 3-K and a src family tyrosine kinase.

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