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Mol Cell. 2001 Nov;8(5):995-1004.

Mutation of the c-Cbl TKB domain binding site on the Met receptor tyrosine kinase converts it into a transforming protein.

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Department of Biochemistry, McGill University, Molecular Oncology Group, McGill University Health Centre, Montréal, Québec H3A 1A1, Canada.


The c-Cbl protooncogene is a negative regulator for several receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) through its ability to promote their polyubiquitination. Hence, uncoupling c-Cbl from RTKs may lead to their deregulation. In testing this, we show that c-Cbl promotes ubiquitination of the Met RTK. This requires the c-Cbl tyrosine kinase binding (TKB) domain and a juxtamembrane tyrosine residue on Met. This tyrosine provides a direct binding site for the c-Cbl TKB domain, and is absent in the rearranged oncogenic Tpr-Met variant. A Met receptor, where the juxtamembrane tyrosine is replaced by phenylalanine, is not ubiquitinated and has transforming activity in fibroblast and epithelial cells. We propose the uncoupling of c-Cbl from RTKs as a mechanism contributing to their oncogenic activation.

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