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

CD38 is associated with lipid rafts and upon receptor stimulation leads to Akt/protein kinase B and Erk activation in the absence of the CD3-zeta immune receptor tyrosine-based activation motifs.

T lymphocytes can be activated via the T cell receptor (TCR) or by triggering through a number of other cell surface structures, including the CD38 co-receptor molecule. Here, we show that in TCR+ T cells that express a CD3-zeta lacking the cytoplasmic domain, cross-linking with CD38- or CD3-specific monoclonal antibodies induces tyrosine phosphorylation of CD3-epsilon, zeta-associated protein-70, linker for activation of T cells, and Shc. Moreover, in these cells, anti-CD38 or anti-CD3 stimulation leads to protein kinase B/ Akt and Erk activation, suggesting that the CD3-zeta-immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motifs are not required for CD38 signaling in T cells. Interestingly, in unstimulated T cells, lipid rafts are highly enriched in CD38, including the T cells lacking the cytoplasmic tail of CD3-zeta. Moreover, CD38 clustering by extensive cross-linking with an anti-CD38 monoclonal antibody and a secondary antibody leads to an increased resistance of CD38 to detergent solubilization, suggesting that CD38 is constitutively associated with membrane rafts. Consistent with this, cholesterol depletion with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin substantially reduces CD38- mediated Akt activation while enhancing CD38- mediated Erk activation. CD38/raft association may improve the signaling capabilities of CD38 via formation of protein/lipid domains to which signaling-competent molecules, such as immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif-bearing CD3 molecules and protein-tyrosine kinases, are recruited.[1]


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