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Eur J Cancer. 2005 Nov;41(16):2549-60. Epub 2005 Oct 13.

RNF11 is a multifunctional modulator of growth factor receptor signalling and transcriptional regulation.

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Department of Anatomic Pathology and Division of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre, 2075 Bayview Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4N 3M5.


Our laboratory has found that the 154aa RING finger protein 11 (RNF11), has modular domains and motifs including a RING-H2 finger domain, a PY motif, an ubiquitin interacting motif (UIM), a 14-3-3 binding sequence and an AKT phosphorylation site. RNF11 represents a unique protein with no other known immediate family members yet described. Comparative genetic analysis has shown that RNF11 is highly conserved throughout evolution. This may indicate a conserved and non-redundant role for the RNF11 protein. Molecular binding assays using RNF11 have shown that RNF11 has important roles in growth factor signalling, ubiquitination and transcriptional regulation. RNF11 has been shown to interact with HECT-type E3 ubiquitin ligases Nedd4, AIP4, Smurf1 and Smurf2, as well as with Cullin1, the core protein in the multi-subunit SCF E3 ubiquitin ligase complex. Work done in our laboratory has shown that RNF11 is capable of antagonizing Smurf2-mediated inhibition of TGFbeta signalling. Furthermore, RNF11 is capable of degrading AMSH, a positive regulator of both TGFbeta and EGFR signalling pathways. Recently, we have found that RNF11 can directly enhance TGFbeta signalling through a direct association with Smad4, the common signal transducer and transcription factor in the TGFbeta, BMP, and Activin pathways. Through its association with Smad4 and other transcription factors, RNF11 may have a role in direct transcriptional regulation. Our laboratory and others have found nearly 80 protein interactions for RNF11, placing RNF11 at the cross-roads of cell signalling and transcriptional regulation. RNF11 is highly expressed in breast tumours. Deregulation of RNF11 function may prove to be harmful to patient therapeutic outcomes. RNF11 may therefore provide a novel target for cancer therapeutics. The purpose of this review is to discuss the role of RNF11 in cell signalling and transcription factor modulation with special attention given to the ubiquitin-proteasomal pathway, TGFbeta pathway and EGFR pathway.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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