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

Amino acid changes in Drosophila alphaPS2betaPS integrins that affect ligand affinity.

We developed a ligand-mimetic antibody Fab fragment specific for Drosophila alphaPS2betaPS integrins to probe the ligand binding affinities of these invertebrate receptors. TWOW-1 was constructed by inserting a fragment of the extracellular matrix protein Tiggrin into the H-CDR3 of the alphavbeta3 ligand-mimetic antibody WOW-1. The specificity of alphaPS2betaPS binding to TWOW-1 was demonstrated by numerous tests used for other integrin-ligand interactions. Binding was decreased in the presence of EDTA or RGD peptides and by mutation of the TWOW-1 RGD sequence or the betaPS metal ion-dependent adhesion site (MIDAS) motif. TWOW-1 binding was increased by mutations in the alphaPS2 membrane-proximal cytoplasmic GFFNR sequence or by exposure to Mn2+. Although Mn2+ is sometimes assumed to promote maximal integrin activity, TWOW-1 binding in Mn2+ could be increased further by the alphaPS2 GFFNR --> GFANA mutation. A mutation in the betaPS I domain (betaPS-b58; V409D) greatly increased ligand binding affinity, explaining the increased cell spreading mediated by alphaPS2betaPS-b58. Further mutagenesis of this residue suggested that Val-409 normally stabilizes the closed head conformation. Mutations that potentially reduce interaction of the integrin beta subunit plexin-semaphorin-integrin (PSI) and stalk domains have been shown to have activating properties. We found that complete deletion of the betaPS PSI domain enhanced TWOW-1 binding. Moreover the PSI domain is dispensable for at least some other integrin functions because betaPS-DeltaPSI displayed an enhanced ability to mediate cell spreading. These studies establish a means to evaluate mechanisms and consequences of integrin affinity modulation in a tractable model genetic system.[1]


  1. Amino acid changes in Drosophila alphaPS2betaPS integrins that affect ligand affinity. Bunch, T.A., Helsten, T.L., Kendall, T.L., Shirahatti, N., Mahadevan, D., Shattil, S.J., Brower, D.L. J. Biol. Chem. (2006) [Pubmed]
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