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J Cell Biochem. 2002;84(2):377-88.

FAK regulates tyrosine phosphorylation of CAS, paxillin, and PYK2 in cells expressing v-Src, but is not a critical determinant of v-Src transformation.

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Department of Cell Biology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee 37232, USA.


FAK (focal adhesion kinase) is a nonreceptor protein-tyrosine kinase activated by tyrosine phosphorylation following integrin-mediated cell adhesion. Oncogenic Src promotes enhanced and deregulated FAK tyrosine phosphorylation which has been proposed to contribute to altered cell growth and/or morphological properties associated with transformation. In this study, an inducible FAK expression system was used to study the potential role of FAK in v-Src transformation. Our results portray FAK as a major v-Src substrate that also plays a role in recruiting v-Src to phosphorylate substrates CAS (Crk-associated substrate) and paxillin. The FAK Tyr-397 autophosphorylation site was necessary for this scaffolding function, but was not required for v-Src to stably interact with and phosphorylate FAK. FAK was also shown to negatively regulate v-Src mediated phosphorylation of the FAK-related kinase PYK2. Despite these effects, FAK does not play an essential role in targeting v-Src to major cellular substrates including CAS and paxillin. Nor is FAK strictly required to achieve the altered morphological and growth characteristics of v-Src transformed cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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