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J Biol Chem. 1995 Mar 24;270(12):6523-30.

The conserved box 1 motif of cytokine receptors is required for association with JAK kinases.

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Center for Immunology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri 63110.


The JAK2 tyrosine kinase is known to associate with the receptors for growth hormone (GH) and erythropoietin (EPO) and with the interleukin-6 receptor signal transducing protein, gp130. Here we demonstrate that chimeric cytokine receptors which contain the cytoplasmic domain of the receptors for GH and EPO or for gp130 can form complexes with JAK2 when transiently co-expressed in HeLa cells. Mutational analyses of chimeras for the the GH and EPO receptors and gp130 demonstrated that box 1, a motif critical for cytokine receptor signal transduction, was required for the association of JAK2. Although JAK2 was capable of associating with all three of the chimeras, JAK1 co-precipitated only with the gp130 chimera. Association of JAK1 and JAK2 with cytokine receptor proteins, therefore, requires the highly conserved box 1 domain, but other sequences within the receptor proteins may influence the specificity of JAK binding. Mutational analysis of JAK2 revealed that multiple or complex protein sequences within JAK2 are required for association with cytokine receptors.

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