Development of Orthogonal Split-Kinase and Split-Phosphatase Systems for Interrogating and Rewiring Signal Transduction
Chemical Inducer of Dimerization
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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EmbargoRelease after 05-Jan-2019
AbstractThe function of most proteins is regulated by post-translational modifications, of which phosphorylation in particular has been shown to be ubiquitous and of paramount importance to cell signaling. Two enzyme families, protein kinases and phosphatases, regulate phosphorylation, and aberrant activities of family members have been implicated in many diseases such as cancer and neurological disorders. Thus, understanding the function of these enzymes in living cells is important for understanding their biology and for designing new therapies, but a challenging task due to their highly conserved architecture. The major focus of the dissertation is on the development of a new approach to selectively turn-on multiple specific kinases and/or phosphatases using orthogonal ligands as chemical inducers of dimerization (CIDs). Specific kinases or phosphatases were dissected at particular sites into two inactive fragments or split-proteins. The split fragments are attached to interacting protein pairs of CID systems, such that upon addition of the specific ligand they heterodimerize with subsequent reassembly of the split-protein and concomitant activity. We demonstrated the in vitro and in cellulo feasibility of this approach using three orthogonal CIDs, rapamycin, abscisic acid, and gibberellic acid, to turn-on members of the tyrosine kinase group such as Lyn and Src, and of the tyrosine phosphatase group such as PTP1B and SHP1. We have also developed a new synthetic photocleavable di-trimethoprim CID that allows for ligand-gated turn-on of desired kinases in live cells. The new CID can be cleaved or turned-off by UV irradiation which results in a turn-off of kinase activity. Small molecule controlled split-proteins allow for developing logic gates and we demonstrate that the systems we have developed can be used to construct 7 out of the 10 basic, circuit-type Boolean phosphorylation-based logic gates in living cells. These post-translational logic gates may have interesting applications in synthetic biology. Finally, we present an initial approach to use redesigned kinases and redesigned ligands as potential scaffolds for developing new CIDs. Thus, we provide and extend new methodologies that potentially allow for posttranslational control over the activity of user defined split-kinases and split-phosphatases for interrogating and redesigning signaling pathways. The last section of this work focuses on understanding small-molecule selectivity toward protein kinases. We systematically analyzed different reported kinase screens to further understand the reliability of large scale data in the kinome field as the design of selective inhibitors is one the most useful approaches for understanding the function of enzymes or the development of drugs in a natural setting such as a primary cell or an organism.
Degree ProgramGraduate College