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J Biol Chem. 2011 Sep 16;286(37):32344-54. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M111.249003. Epub 2011 Jul 27.

Cullin 4B protein ubiquitin ligase targets peroxiredoxin III for degradation.

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Key Laboratory of Experimental Teratology, Ministry of Education, Institute of Medical Genetics, Shandong University School of Medicine, Jinan, Shandong 250012, China.


Cullin 4B (CUL4B) is a scaffold protein that assembles cullin-RING ubiquitin ligase (E3) complexes. Recent studies have revealed that germ-line mutations in CUL4B can cause mental retardation, short stature, and many other abnormalities in humans. Identifying specific CUL4B substrates will help to better understand the physiological functions of CUL4B. Here, we report the identification of peroxiredoxin III (PrxIII) as a novel substrate of the CUL4B ubiquitin ligase complex. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis coupled with mass spectrometry showed that PrxIII was among the proteins up-regulated in cells after RNAi-mediated CUL4B depletion. The impaired degradation of PrxIII observed in CUL4B knockdown cells was confirmed by Western blot. We further demonstrated that DDB1 and ROC1 in the DDB1-CUL4B-ROC1 complex are also indispensable for the proteolysis of PrxIII. In addition, the degradation of PrxIII is independent of CUL4A, a cullin family member closely related to CUL4B. In vitro and in vivo ubiquitination assays revealed that CUL4B promoted the polyubiquitination of PrxIII. Furthermore, we observed a significant decrease in cellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in CUL4B-silenced cells, which was associated with increased resistance to hypoxia and H(2)O(2)-induced apoptosis. These findings are discussed with regard to the known function of PrxIII as a ROS scavenger and the high endogenous ROS levels required for neural stem cell proliferation. Together, our study has identified a specific target substrate of CUL4B ubiquitin ligase that may have significant implications for the pathogenesis observed in patients with mutations in CUL4B.

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