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J Biol Chem. 2011 Dec 9;286(49):42303-15. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M111.227462. Epub 2011 Oct 12.

Cellular settings mediating Src Substrate switching between focal adhesion kinase tyrosine 861 and CUB-domain-containing protein 1 (CDCP1) tyrosine 734.

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  • 1Mater Medical Research Institute, Aubigny Place, Raymond Terrace, South Brisbane, Queensland 4101, Australia.


Reciprocal interactions between Src family kinases (SFKs) and focal adhesion kinase (FAK) are critical during changes in cell attachment. Recently it has been recognized that another SFK substrate, CUB-domain-containing protein 1 (CDCP1), is differentially phosphorylated during these events. However, the molecular processes underlying SFK-mediated phosphorylation of CDCP1 are poorly understood. Here we identify a novel mechanism in which FAK tyrosine 861 and CDCP1-Tyr-734 compete as SFK substrates and demonstrate cellular settings in which SFKs switch between these sites. Our results show that stable CDCP1 expression induces robust SFK-mediated phosphorylation of CDCP1-Tyr-734 with concomitant loss of p-FAK-Tyr-861 in adherent HeLa cells. SFK substrate switching in these cells is dependent on the level of expression of CDCP1 and is also dependent on CDCP1-Tyr-734 but is independent of CDCP1-Tyr-743 and -Tyr-762. In HeLa CDCP1 cells, engagement of SFKs with CDCP1 is accompanied by an increase in phosphorylation of Src-Tyr-416 and a change in cell morphology to a fibroblastic appearance dependent on CDCP1-Tyr-734. SFK switching between FAK-Tyr-861 and CDCP1-Tyr-734 also occurs during changes in adhesion of colorectal cancer cell lines endogenously expressing these two proteins. Consistently, increased p-FAK-Tyr-861 levels and a more epithelial morphology are seen in colon cancer SW480 cells silenced for CDCP1. Unlike protein kinase Cδ, FAK does not appear to form a trimeric complex with Src and CDCP1. These data demonstrate novel aspects of the dynamics of SFK-mediated cell signaling that may be relevant during cancer progression.

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