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J Biol Chem. 2013 Sep 6;288(36):26323-34. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M112.439380. Epub 2013 Jul 29.

Metastasis suppressor tetraspanin CD82/KAI1 regulates ubiquitylation of epidermal growth factor receptor.

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  • 1School of Cancer Sciences, College of Medical and Dental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT, United Kingdom.


Ligand-induced ubiquitylation of EGF receptor (EGFR) is an important regulatory mechanism that controls endocytic trafficking of the receptor and its signaling potential. Here we report that tetraspanin CD82/KAI1 specifically suppresses ubiquitylation of EGFR after stimulation with heparin-binding EGF or amphiregulin and alters the rate of recruitment of the activated receptor to EEA1-positive endosomes. The suppressive effect of CD82 is dependent on the heparin-binding domain of the ligand. Deletion of the C-terminal cytoplasmic domain of CD82 (CD82ΔC mutant) inhibits endocytic trafficking of the tetraspanin and compromises its activity toward heparin-binding EGF-activated EGFR. Reduced ubiquitylation of EGFR is accompanied by PKC-dependent increase in serine phosphorylation of c-Cbl in cells expressing elevated levels of CD82. Furthermore, phosphorylation of threonine 654 (PKC phosphorylation site) in the juxtamembrane domain of the receptor is considerably increased in CD82-expressing cells. These results describe previously unsuspected links between tetraspanin proteins and ubiquitylation of their molecular partners (e.g., EGFR). Our data identify CD82 as a new regulator of c-Cbl, which discriminatively controls the activity of this E3 ubiquitin ligase toward heparin-binding ligand-EGFR pairs. Taken together, these observations provide an important new insight into the modulatory role of CD82 in endocytic trafficking of EGF receptor.


CD82; Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR); Heparin-binding Protein; Tetraspanins; Trafficking; Ubiquitylation

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