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J Biol Chem. 2005 Apr 22;280(16):15992-6001. Epub 2005 Jan 12.

The integral inner nuclear membrane protein MAN1 physically interacts with the R-Smad proteins to repress signaling by the transforming growth factor-{beta} superfamily of cytokines.

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  • 1Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley and Life Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.


Smad proteins are critical intracellular mediators of the transforming growth factor-beta, bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs), and activin signaling. Upon ligand binding, the receptor-associated R-Smads are phosphorylated by the active type I receptor serine/threonine kinases. The phosphorylated R-Smads then form heteromeric complexes with Smad4, translocate into the nucleus, and interact with various transcription factors to regulate the expression of downstream genes. Interaction of Smad proteins with cellular partners in the cytoplasm and nucleus is a critical mechanism by which the activities and expression of the Smad proteins are modulated. Here we report a novel step of regulation of the R-Smad function at the inner nuclear membrane through a physical interaction between the integral inner nuclear membrane protein MAN1 and R-Smads. MAN1, through the RNA recognition motif, associates with R-Smads but not Smad4 at the inner nuclear membrane in a ligand-independent manner. Overexpression of MAN1 results in inhibition of R-Smad phosphorylation, heterodimerization with Smad4 and nuclear translocation, and repression of transcriptional activation of the TGFbeta, BMP2, and activin-responsive promoters. This repression of TGFbeta, BMP2, and activin signaling is dependent on the MAN1-Smad interaction because a point mutation that disrupts this interaction abolishes the transcriptional repression by MAN1. Thus, MAN1 represents a new class of R-Smad regulators and defines a previously unrecognized regulatory step at the nuclear periphery.

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