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Biochemistry. 2010 Jun 8;49(22):4635-43. doi: 10.1021/bi1001486.

Mesd is a universal inhibitor of Wnt coreceptors LRP5 and LRP6 and blocks Wnt/beta-catenin signaling in cancer cells.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Drug Discovery Division, Southern Research Institute, 2000 Ninth Avenue South, Birmingham, Alabama 35255-5305, USA.


Mesd is a specialized chaperone for low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 5 (LRP5) and LRP6. In our previous studies, we found that Mesd binds to mature LRP6 on the cell surface and blocks the binding of Wnt antagonist Dickkopf-1 (Dkk1) to LRP6. Herein, we demonstrate that Mesd also binds to LRP5 with a high affinity and is a universal inhibitor of LRP5 and LRP6 ligands. Mesd not only blocks binding of Wnt antagonists Dkk1 and Sclerostin to LRP5 and LRP6 but also inhibits Wnt3A and Rspondin1-induced Wnt/beta-catenin signaling in LRP5- and LRP6-expressing cells. We also found that Mesd, Dkk1, and Sclerostin compete with one another for binding to LRP5 and LRP6 at the cell surface. More importantly, we demonstrated that Mesd is able to suppress LRP6 phosphorylation and Wnt/beta-catenin signaling in prostate cancer PC-3 cells and inhibits PC-3 cell proliferation. Our results indicate that recombinant Mesd protein is a useful tool for studying Wnt/beta-catenin signaling on the cell surface and has a potential therapeutic role in Wnt-dependent cancers.

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