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The C-terminus of interferon gamma receptor beta chain (IFNgammaR2) has antiapoptotic activity as a Bax inhibitor.

Gomez JA, Sun W, Gama V, Hajkova D, Yoshida T, Wu Z, Miyagi M, Pink JJ, Jackson MW, Danielpour D, Matsuyama S
Cancer Biol Ther. 2009 8 (18): 1771-86

PMID: 19657228 · PMCID: PMC2927208 · DOI:10.4161/cbt.8.18.9323

Bax is a pro-apoptotic protein that mediates intrinsic cell-death signaling. Using a yeast-based functional screening approach, we identified interferon gamma receptor beta chain (IFNgammaR2) as a new Bax suppressor. IFNgammaR2 is a component of the IFNgamma receptor complex along with the IFNgammaR alpha chain (IFNgammaR1). Upon IFNgamma binding, a conformational change in the receptor complex occurs that activates the Jak2/STAT1 signaling cascade. We found that the C-terminal region (amino acids 296-337) of IFNgammaR2 (IFNgammaR2(296-337)) contains a novel Bax inhibitory domain. This portion does not contain the Jak2-binding domain; therefore, the antiapoptotic function of IFNgammaR2 is independent of JAK/STAT signaling. IFNgammaR2(296-337) rescued human cells from apoptosis induced by overexpression of Bax but not Bak. Overexpression of IFNgammaR2 (wild type and IFNgammaR2(296-337)) rescued cells from etoposide and staurosporine, which are known to induce Bax-mediated cell death. Interestingly, IFNgammaR2 inhibited apoptosis induced by the BH3-only protein Bim-EL, suggesting that IFNgammaR2 inhibits Bax activation through a BH3-only protein. Bax and IFNgammaR2 were co-immunoprecipitated from cell lysates prepared from HEK293 and DAMI cells. Furthermore, direct binding of purified recombinant proteins of Bax and IFNgammaR2 was also confirmed. Addition of recombinant Bcl-2 protein to cell lysates significantly reduced the interaction of IFNgammaR2 and Bax, suggesting that Bcl-2 and IFNgammaR2 bind a similar domain of Bax. We found that the C-terminal fragment (cytoplasmic domain) of IFNgammaR2 is expressed in human cancer cell lines of megakaryocytic cancer (DAMI), breast cancer (MDA-MD-468), and prostate cancer (PC3 cells). The presence of the C-terminal fragment of IFNgammaR2 may confer on cancer cells resistance to apoptotic stresses. Our discovery of the anti-Bax activity of the cytoplasmic domain of IFNgammaR2 may shed new light on the mechanism of how cell death is controlled by IFNgamma and Bax.

MeSH Terms (28)

Apoptosis Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins bcl-2 Homologous Antagonist-Killer Protein bcl-2-Associated X Protein Bcl-2-Like Protein 11 Binding Sites Blotting, Western Cell Line Cell Line, Tumor Cell Membrane Cytosol Green Fluorescent Proteins HeLa Cells Humans Immunoprecipitation Janus Kinase 2 Mass Spectrometry Membrane Proteins Microscopy, Fluorescence Mitochondria Protein Binding Proto-Oncogene Proteins Receptors, Interferon RNA Interference Signal Transduction STAT1 Transcription Factor Transfection Yeasts

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