The origin of C1A-C2 interdomain interactions in protein kinase Cα

Robert V. Stahelin, Jiyao Wang, Nichole R. Blatner, John D. Rafter, Diana Murray, Wonhwa Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Scopus citations


The regulatory domain of protein kinase Cα (PKCα) contains three membrane-targeting modules, two C1 domains (C1A and C1B) that bind diacylglycerol and phorbol ester, and the C2 domain that is responsible for the Ca2+-dependent membrane binding. Accumulating evidence suggests that C1A and C2 domains of PKCα are tethered in the resting state and that the tethering is released upon binding to the membrane containing phosphatidylserine. The homology modeling and the docking analysis of C1A and C2 domains of PKCα revealed a highly complementary interface that comprises Asp55-Arg252 and Arg42-Glu282 ion pairs and a Phe72-Phe255 aromatic pair. Mutations of these residues in the predicted C1A-C2 interface showed large effects on in vitro membrane binding, enzyme activity, phosphatidylserine selectivity, and cellular membrane translocation of PKCα, supporting their involvement in interdomain interactions. In particular, D55A (or D55K) and R252A (or R252E) mutants showed much higher basal membrane affinity and enzyme activity and faster subcellular translocation than wild type, whereas a double charge-reversal mutant (D55K/ R252E) behaved analogously to wild type, indicating that a direct electrostatic interaction between the two residues is essential for the C1A-C2 tethering. Collectively, these studies provide new structural insight into PKCα C1A-C2 interdomain interactions and the mechanism of lipid-mediated PKCα activation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36452-36463
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number43
StatePublished - Oct 28 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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