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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Heparan sulfate proteoglycan modulates keratinocyte growth factor signaling through interaction with both ligand and receptor.

Keratinocyte growth factor ( KGF) is an unusual fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family member in that its activity is largely restricted to epithelial cells, and added heparin/heparan sulfate inhibits its activity in most cell types. The effects of heparan sulfate proteoglycan ( HSPG) on binding and signaling by acidic FGF ( aFGF) and KGF via the KGFR were studied using surface- bound and soluble receptor isoforms expressed in wild type and mutant Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells lacking HSPG. Low concentrations of added heparin (1 microgram/mL) enhanced the affinity of ligand binding to surface-bound KGFR in CHO mutants, as well as ligand-stimulated MAP kinase activation and c-fos induction, but had little effect on binding or signaling in wild type CHO cells. Higher heparin concentrations inhibited KGF, but not aFGF, binding and signaling. In addition to the known interaction between HSPG and KGF, we found that the KGFR also bound heparin. The biphasic effect of heparin on KGF, but not aFGF, binding and signaling suggests that occupancy of the HSPG binding site on the KGFR may specifically inhibit KGF signaling. In contrast to events on the cell surface, added heparin was not required for high-affinity soluble KGF-KGFR interaction. These results suggest that high-affinity ligand binding is an intrinsic property of the receptor, and that the difference between the HSPG-dependent ligand binding to receptor on cell surfaces and the HSPG-independent binding to soluble receptor may be due to other molecule(s) present on cell surfaces.[1]


  1. Heparan sulfate proteoglycan modulates keratinocyte growth factor signaling through interaction with both ligand and receptor. LaRochelle, W.J., Sakaguchi, K., Atabey, N., Cheon, H.G., Takagi, Y., Kinaia, T., Day, R.M., Miki, T., Burgess, W.H., Bottaro, D.P. Biochemistry (1999) [Pubmed]
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