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Unexpected survival of mice carrying a mutation in Pygo2 that strongly reduces its binding to Bcl9/9l


Cantù, Claudio; Zimmerli, Dario; Basler, Konrad (2016). Unexpected survival of mice carrying a mutation in Pygo2 that strongly reduces its binding to Bcl9/9l. Matters Select:1-5.

Abstract

Pygopus is a transcriptional activator important for the Wnt signaling pathway. It binds to the beta-catenin transcriptional complex via the adaptor proteins Bcl9 and Bcl9l (Bcl9/9l). This complex is considered to be a suitable target for the treatment of tumors that display activated Wnt signaling. In the mouse, there are two Pygopus-encoding genes, Pygo1 and Pygo2 (Pygo1/2), with the latter playing a major role. Here we introduce a single amino acid substitution in Pygo2, which was previously shown to abrogate binding to Bcl9/9l, and cause lethality in Drosophila melanogaster. We confirm that mutant Pygo2 protein fails in interacting with Bcl9 but, unexpectedly, homozygous mice with this mutation are viable and fertile, even when this mutant allele is combined with a null mutation of the potentially redundant Pygo1. Based on this observation, we conjecture that the Pygo-Bcl9/9l interaction requires scant affinity in vivo to fulfill developmental functions and thrust forward the notion that this interaction surface could be targeted in cancer therapy without major consequences on homeostatic functions.

Abstract

Pygopus is a transcriptional activator important for the Wnt signaling pathway. It binds to the beta-catenin transcriptional complex via the adaptor proteins Bcl9 and Bcl9l (Bcl9/9l). This complex is considered to be a suitable target for the treatment of tumors that display activated Wnt signaling. In the mouse, there are two Pygopus-encoding genes, Pygo1 and Pygo2 (Pygo1/2), with the latter playing a major role. Here we introduce a single amino acid substitution in Pygo2, which was previously shown to abrogate binding to Bcl9/9l, and cause lethality in Drosophila melanogaster. We confirm that mutant Pygo2 protein fails in interacting with Bcl9 but, unexpectedly, homozygous mice with this mutation are viable and fertile, even when this mutant allele is combined with a null mutation of the potentially redundant Pygo1. Based on this observation, we conjecture that the Pygo-Bcl9/9l interaction requires scant affinity in vivo to fulfill developmental functions and thrust forward the notion that this interaction surface could be targeted in cancer therapy without major consequences on homeostatic functions.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Molecular Life Sciences
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
Language:English
Date:3 May 2016
Deposited On:19 Jan 2018 19:58
Last Modified:02 Feb 2018 12:35
Publisher:ScienceMatters AG
ISSN:2297-9239
OA Status:Green
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.19185/matters.201604000006

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