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Mol Cell Biol. 2003 Mar;23(5):1674-87.

Beta-catenin binds to the activation function 2 region of the androgen receptor and modulates the effects of the N-terminal domain and TIF2 on ligand-dependent transcription.

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Department of Oncology, Lombardi Cancer Center, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, D.C. 20007-2197, USA.


Beta-catenin is a multifunctional molecule that is activated by signaling through WNT receptors. beta-Catenin can also enhance the transcriptional activity of some steroid hormone receptors such as the androgen receptor and retinoic acid receptor alpha. Androgens can affect nuclear translocation of beta-catenin and influence its subcellular distribution. Using mammalian two-hybrid binding assays, analysis of reporter gene transcription, and coimmunoprecipitation, we now show that beta-catenin binds to the androgen receptor ligand-binding domain (LBD) and modulates the transcriptional effects of TIF2 and the androgen receptor N-terminal domain (NTD). In functional assays, beta-catenin bound to androgen receptor only in the presence of ligand agonists, not antagonists. Beta-catenin binding to the androgen receptor LBD was independent of and cooperative with the androgen receptor NTD and the p160 coactivator TIF2, both of which bind to the activation function 2 (AF-2) region of the androgen receptor. Different mutations of androgen receptor helix 3 amino acids disrupted binding of androgen receptor NTD and beta-catenin. beta-Catenin, androgen receptor NTD, and TIF2 binding to the androgen receptor LBD were affected similarly by a subset of helix 12 mutations, but disruption of two sites on helix 12 affected only binding of beta-catenin and not of TIF2 or the androgen receptor NTD. Mutational disruption of each of five LXXLL peptide motifs in the beta-catenin armadillo repeats did not disrupt either binding to androgen receptor or transcriptional coactivation. ICAT, an inhibitor of T-cell factor 4 (TCF-4), and E-cadherin binding to beta-catenin also blocked binding of the androgen receptor LBD. We also demonstrated cross talk between the WNT and androgen receptor signaling pathways because excess androgen receptor could interfere with WNT signaling and excess TCF-4 inhibited the interaction of beta-catenin and androgen receptor. Taken together, the data show that beta-catenin can bind to the androgen receptor LBD and modulate the effects of the androgen receptor NTD and TIF2 on transcription.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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