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J Biol Chem. 2010 Jun 25;285(26):20015-21. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M109.094821. Epub 2010 Apr 26.

Novel function and intracellular localization of methionine adenosyltransferase 2beta splicing variants.

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Division of Gastroenterology and Liver Diseases, University of Southern California (USC) Research Center for Liver Diseases, USC-UCLA Research Center for Alcoholic Liver and Pancreatic Diseases, Keck School of Medicine USC, Los Angeles, CA 90033, USA.


Human methionine adenosyltransferase 2beta (MAT2beta) encodes for two major splicing variants, V1 and V2, which are differentially expressed in normal tissues. Both variants are induced in human liver cancer and positively regulate growth. The aim of this work was to identify interacting proteins of V1 and V2. His-tagged V1 and V2 were overexpressed in Rosetta pLysS cells, purified, and used in a pulldown assay to identify interacting proteins from human colon cancer cell line RKO cell lysates. The eluted lysates were subjected to Western blot and in solution proteomic analyses. HuR, an mRNA-binding protein known to stabilize the mRNA of several cyclins, was identified to interact with V1 and V2. Immunoprecipitation and Western blotting confirmed their interaction in both liver and colon cancer cells. These variant proteins are located in both nucleus and cytoplasm in liver and colon cancer cells and, when overexpressed, increased the cytoplasmic HuR content. This led to increased expression of cyclin D1 and cyclin A, known targets of HuR. When endogenous expression of V1 or V2 is reduced by small interference RNA, cytoplasmic HuR content fell and the expression of these HuR target genes also decreased. Knockdown of cyclin D1 or cyclin A blunted, whereas knockdown of HuR largely prevented, the ability of V1 or V2 overexpression to induce growth. In conclusion, MAT2beta variants reside mostly in the nucleus and regulate HuR subcellular content to affect cell proliferation.

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