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Mol Cell Biol. 2000 Apr;20(7):2326-33.

Nedd8 modification of cul-1 activates SCF(beta(TrCP))-dependent ubiquitination of IkappaBalpha.

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LeukoSite, Inc., Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.


Regulation of NF-kappaB occurs through phosphorylation-dependent ubiquitination of IkappaBalpha, which is degraded by the 26S proteasome. Recent studies have shown that ubiquitination of IkappaBalpha is carried out by a ubiquitin-ligase enzyme complex called SCF(beta(TrCP)). Here we show that Nedd8 modification of the Cul-1 component of SCF(beta(TrCP)) is important for function of SCF(beta(TrCP)) in ubiquitination of IkappaBalpha. In cells, Nedd8-conjugated Cul-1 was complexed with two substrates of SCF(beta(TrCP)), phosphorylated IkappaBalpha and beta-catenin, indicating that Nedd8-Cul-1 conjugates are part of SCF(beta(TrCP)) in vivo. Although only a minute fraction of total cellular Cul-1 is modified by Nedd8, the Cul-1 associated with ectopically expressed betaTrCP was highly enriched for the Nedd8-conjugated form. Moreover, optimal ubiquitination of IkappaBalpha required Nedd8 and the Nedd8-conjugating enzyme, Ubc12. The site of Nedd8 ligation to Cul-1 is essential, as SCF(beta(TrCP)) containing a K720R mutant of Cul-1 only weakly supported IkappaBalpha ubiquitination compared to SCF(beta(TrCP)) containing WT Cul-1, suggesting that the Nedd8 ligation of Cul-1 affects the ubiquitination activity of SCF(beta(TrCP)). These observations provide a functional link between the highly related ubiquitin and Nedd8 pathways of protein modification and show how they operate together to selectively target the signal-dependent degradation of IkappaBalpha.

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