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

FGF3 attached to a phosholipid membrane anchor gains a high transforming capacity. Implications of microdomains for FGF3 cell transformation.

NIH3T3 cells transformed by mouse FGF3-cDNA (DMI cells) selected for their ability to grow as anchorage-independent colonies in soft agar and in defined medium lacking growth factors exhibit a highly transformed phenotype. We have used dominant negative (DN) fibroblast growth factor (FGF) receptor 2 (FGFR2) isoforms to block the FGF response in DMI cells. When the DN-FGFR was expressed in DMI cells, their transformed phenotype can be reverted. The truncated FGFR2(IIIb), the high affinity FGFR for FGF3, is significantly more efficient at reverting the transformed phenotype as the IIIc isoform, reaffirming the notion that the affinity of the ligand to the DN-FGFR2 isoform determines the effect. Heparin or heparan sulfate displaces FGF3 from binding sites on the cell surface inhibiting the growth of DMI cells and reverts the transformed phenotype (). However, the presence of heparin is necessary to induce a mitogenic response in NIH3T3 cells when stimulated with soluble purified mouse FGF3. We have investigated the importance of cell surface binding of FGF3 for its ability to transform NIH3T3 cells by creating an FGF3 mutant anchored to the membrane via glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI). The GPI anchor renders the cell surface association of FGF3 independent from binding to heparan sulfate-proteoglycan of the cell surface membrane. Attachment of a GPI anchor to FGF3 also confers a much higher transforming potential to the growth factor. Even more, the purified GPI-attached FGF3 is as much transforming as the secreted protein acting in an autocrine mode. Because NIH3T3 cells do not express the high affinity tyrosine kinase FGF receptors for FGF3, these findings suggest that FGF3 attached to GPI-linked heparan sulfate-proteoglycan may have a broader biological activity as when bound to transmembrane or soluble heparan sulfate-proteoglycan.[1]


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