bims-pimaco Biomed News
on PI3K and MAPK signalling in colorectal cancer
Issue of 2023‒12‒31
one paper selected by
Lucas B. Zeiger, Beatson Institute for Cancer Research

  1. Elife. 2023 Dec 27. pii: RP88836. [Epub ahead of print]12
      BRAF is a key member in the MAPK signaling pathway essential for cell growth, proliferation, and differentiation. Mutant BRAF is often the underlying cause of various types of cancer and mutant RAS, the upstream regulator of BRAF, is a driver of up to one-third of all cancers. BRAF interacts with RAS and undergoes a conformational change from an inactive, autoinhibited monomer to an active dimer, which propagates downstream signaling. Because of BRAF's complex regulation mechanism, the exact order and magnitude of its activation steps have yet to be confirmed experimentally. By studying the inter- and intramolecular interactions of BRAF, we unveil the domain-specific and isoform-specific details of BRAF regulation through pulldown assays, open surface plasmon resonance (OpenSPR), and hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry (HDX-MS). We demonstrate that the BRAF specific region (BSR) and cysteine rich domain (CRD) play a crucial role in regulating the activation of BRAF in a RAS isoform-specific manner. Moreover, we quantified the binding affinities between BRAF N-terminal and kinase domains (KD) to reveal their individual roles in autoinhibition. Our findings also indicate that oncogenic BRAF-KDD594G mutant has a lower affinity for the N-terminal domains, implicating that pathogenic BRAF acts through decreased propensity for autoinhibition. Collectively, our study provides valuable insight into the activation mechanism of BRAF kinase to guide the development of new therapeutic strategies for cancer treatment.
    Keywords:  E. coli; MAPK signaling; RAF kinase; RAS; biochemistry; chemical biology