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J Biol Chem. 2002 Oct 4;277(40):37479-86. Epub 2002 Jul 22.

Frizzled-9 is activated by Wnt-2 and functions in Wnt/beta -catenin signaling.

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Child Study Center and Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.


Frizzled has been known to function as a Wnt receptor. Although there have been a number of mammalian Frizzled members identified, their binding specificities with Wnt and functions in mammalian cells have been poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that rat Frizzled-9 (Rfz9) functions in Wnt/beta-catenin signaling in 293T cells. Rfz9 overexpression induces the hyperphosphorylation and relocalization of mouse Dishevelled-1 (Dvl-1) from the cytoplasm to the cell membrane and the accumulation of cytosolic beta-catenin. Transfections of Rfz9 with each of several Wnt members show that only Wnt-2 activates Rfz9 in T cell factor (TCF)-dependent transcription. Deletion mutant analysis determines that there is a difference in Rfz9 C-terminal residues required for the modifications of Dvl-1 and those required for the inductions of beta-catenin stabilization and TCF transactivation. Deletion of the Wnt-binding domain does not abolish Rfz9 activity completely, although it causes the inactivation of Wnt-2-dependent TCF transcription. Rfz9 also relocalizes Axin from the cytoplasm to the plasma membrane in the presence of Dvl-1, suggesting that one of the consequences of Dvl-1 relocalization by Rfz9 is to bring Axin to the cell membrane.

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