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J Biol Chem. 2010 Mar 5;285(10):7818-26. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M109.053975. Epub 2010 Jan 5.

The scaffold protein Shoc2/SUR-8 accelerates the interaction of Ras and Raf.

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Laboratory of Bioimaging and Cell Signaling, Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan.


Shoc2/SUR-8 positively regulates Ras/ERK MAP kinase signaling by serving as a scaffold for Ras and Raf. Here, we examined the role of Shoc2 in the spatio-temporal regulation of Ras by using a fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based biosensor, together with computational modeling. In epidermal growth factor-stimulated HeLa cells, RNA-mediated Shoc2 knockdown reduced the phosphorylation of MEK and ERK with half-maximal inhibition, but not the activation of Ras. For the live monitoring of Ras binding to Raf, we utilized a FRET biosensor wherein Ras and the Ras-binding domain of Raf were connected tandemly and sandwiched with acceptor and donor fluorescent proteins for the FRET measurement. With this biosensor, we found that Shoc2 was required for the rapid interaction of Ras with Raf upon epidermal growth factor stimulation. To decipher the molecular mechanisms underlying the kinetics, we developed two computational models that might account for the action of Shoc2 in the Ras-ERK signaling. One of these models, the Shoc2 accelerator model, provided a reasonable explanation of the experimental observations. In this Shoc2 accelerator model, Shoc2 accelerated both the association and dissociation of Ras-Raf interaction. We propose that Shoc2 regulates the spatio-temporal patterns of the Ras-ERK signaling pathway primarily by accelerating the Ras-Raf interaction.

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