Interaction with WDR5 promotes target gene recognition and tumorigenesis by MYC.

Thomas LR, Wang Q, Grieb BC, Phan J, Foshage AM, Sun Q, Olejniczak ET, Clark T, Dey S, Lorey S, Alicie B, Howard GC, Cawthon B, Ess KC, Eischen CM, Zhao Z, Fesik SW, Tansey WP
Mol Cell. 2015 58 (3): 440-52

PMID: 25818646 · PMCID: PMC4427524 · DOI:10.1016/j.molcel.2015.02.028

MYC is an oncoprotein transcription factor that is overexpressed in the majority of malignancies. The oncogenic potential of MYC stems from its ability to bind regulatory sequences in thousands of target genes, which depends on interaction of MYC with its obligate partner, MAX. Here, we show that broad association of MYC with chromatin also depends on interaction with the WD40-repeat protein WDR5. MYC binds WDR5 via an evolutionarily conserved "MYC box IIIb" motif that engages a shallow, hydrophobic cleft on the surface of WDR5. Structure-guided mutations in MYC that disrupt interaction with WDR5 attenuate binding of MYC at ∼80% of its chromosomal locations and disable its ability to promote induced pluripotent stem cell formation and drive tumorigenesis. Our data reveal WDR5 as a key determinant for MYC recruitment to chromatin and uncover a tractable target for the discovery of anticancer therapies against MYC-driven tumors.

Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

MeSH Terms (23)

Amino Acid Motifs Amino Acid Sequence Animals Anisotropy Binding Sites Carcinogenesis Chromatin Fluorescence Polarization HEK293 Cells Humans Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins Mice Mice, Nude Models, Molecular Molecular Sequence Data Mutation NIH 3T3 Cells Protein Binding Proteins Protein Structure, Tertiary Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc Sequence Homology, Amino Acid Two-Hybrid System Techniques

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