Modulation of PDGF Receptor Signaling via the Phosphatase SHP-2 and the Docking Protein Gab1

University dissertation from Uppsala : Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis

Abstract: Platelet-derived growth factors (PDGF), a family of potent mitogens and chemoattractants for cells of mesenchymal origin, elicit their biological effects through the binding of two related receptor tyrosine kinases, denoted ?- and ?-receptors. The binding of PDGF to the receptors causes receptor dimerization and autophosphorylation on tyrosine residues. Src homology 2 (SH2) domain-containing proteins then bind the phosphorylated receptors, mediating further propagation of the signal. This thesis describes how the interaction between the PDGF receptors and some of their downstream targets can modify the cellular response to PDGF.The tyrosine phosphatase SHP-2 has been implicated in activation of the Ras/MAPK pathway downstream of several receptor tyrosine kinases. We found that SHP-2 binds to phosphorylated Y763 in the PDGF ?-receptor, in addition to the already reported binding to Y1009. Cells expressing PDGF ?-receptors with Y763 and Y1009 mutated to phenylalanine exhibited decreased Ras-GTP loading and reduced activation of Erk2 in response to PDGF. Whereas these cells did not show any change in the mitogenic response to PDGF, the PDGF-induced chemotaxis was significantly reduced in cells expressing mutant compared to wild-type receptor.The phosphorylation of Y771 of the PDGF ?-receptor had been shown to be significantly lower in the ??-heterodimeric receptor compared to in the ??-homodimer, causing reduced binding of RasGAP to the heterodimer and increased Ras/MAPK activation. We could demonstrate that the reduced phosphorylation of Y771 is due to dephosphorylation by tyrosine phosphatases, including SHP-2.SHP-2 had been shown to associate with the docking protein Gab1 after growth factor stimulation. We showed that the adaptor protein Grb2 was required for PDGF mediated phosphorylation of Gab1, and that phosphorylated Gab1, Grb2 and SHP-2 create a complex upon PDGF stimulation. Using a cell system with an inducible Gab1 expression, we further demonstrated that Gab1 increased SHP-2 activity in response to PDGF, without affecting the interaction between SHP-2 and the b-receptor. Induction of Gab1 correlated with an increase in both PDGF-induced Erk and p38 MAPK activation, whereas Akt activation was unaffected. The latter finding was in line with our observation that PDGF had no effect on the interaction between Gab1 and p85 of PI3’-kinase. The increase in MAPK activity after Gab1 induction and PDGF treatment did not correlate with an increase in PDGF-induced mitogenicity; instead these cells displayed more pronounced actin reorganization in response to PDGF.In conclusion, our data indicate that SHP-2 regulates the PDGF response both through direct dephosphorylation of the receptor and through its interaction with Gab1. PDGF stimulated activation of SHP-2 seems to be correlated not only with mitogenesis, but also with reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton and cell migration.