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Characterization of RanBPM Molecular Determinants that Control Its Subcellular Localization

posted on 06.02.2015, 03:00 by Louisa M. Salemi, Sandra O. Loureiro, Caroline Schild-Poulter

RanBPM/RanBP9 is a ubiquitous, nucleocytoplasmic protein that is part of an evolutionary conserved E3 ubiquitin ligase complex whose function and targets in mammals are still unknown. RanBPM itself has been implicated in various cellular processes that involve both nuclear and cytoplasmic functions. However, to date, little is known about how RanBPM subcellular localization is regulated. We have conducted a systematic analysis of RanBPM regions that control its subcellular localization using RanBPM shRNA cells to examine ectopic RanBPM mutant subcellular localization without interference from the endogenously expressed protein. We show that several domains and motifs regulate RanBPM nuclear and cytoplasmic localization. In particular, RanBPM comprises two motifs that can confer nuclear localization, one proline/glutamine-rich motif in the extreme N-terminus which has a dominant effect on RanBPM localization, and a second motif in the C-terminus which minimally contributes to RanBPM nuclear targeting. We also identified a nuclear export signal (NES) which mutation prevented RanBPM accumulation in the cytoplasm. Likewise, deletion of the central RanBPM conserved domains (SPRY and LisH/CTLH) resulted in the relocalization of RanBPM to the nucleus, suggesting that RanBPM cytoplasmic localization is also conferred by protein-protein interactions that promote its cytoplasmic retention. Indeed we found that in the cytoplasm, RanBPM partially colocalizes with microtubules and associates with α-tubulin. Finally, in the nucleus, a significant fraction of RanBPM is associated with chromatin. Altogether, these analyses reveal that RanBPM subcellular localization results from the combined effects of several elements that either confer direct transport through the nucleocytoplasmic transport machinery or regulate it indirectly, likely through interactions with other proteins and by intramolecular folding.