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Biochem J. 2007 Jan 1;401(1):257-67.

The C-terminus of CIS defines its interaction pattern.

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Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology, Department of Medical Protein Research (VIB09), Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, Baertsoenkaai 3, 9000 Ghent, Belgium.


Proteins of the SOCS (suppressors of cytokine signalling) family are characterized by a conserved modular structure with pre-SH2 (Src homology 2), SH2 and SOCS-box domains. Several members, including CIS (cytokine-inducible SH2 protein), SOCS1 and SOCS3, are induced rapidly upon cytokine receptor activation and function in a negative-feedback loop, attenuating signalling at the receptor level. We used a recently developed mammalian two-hybrid system [MAPPIT (mammalian protein-protein interaction trap)] to analyse SOCS protein-interaction patterns in intact cells, allowing direct comparison with biological function. We find that, besides the SH2 domain, the C-terminal part of the CIS SOCS-box is required for functional interaction with the cytokine receptor motifs examined, but not with the N-terminal death domain of the TLR (Toll-like receptor) adaptor MyD88. Mutagenesis revealed that one single tyrosine residue at position 253 is a critical binding determinant. In contrast, substrate binding by the highly related SOCS2 protein, and also by SOCS1 and SOCS3, does not require their SOCS-box.

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