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Cardoso A.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Pereira A.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Ambrosio A.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Consonni S.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | And 5 more authors.

Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) has emerged as a mediator of mechanotransduction in cardiomyocytes, regulating gene expression during hypertrophic remodeling. However, how FAK signaling is relayed onward to the nucleus is unclear. Here, we show that FAK interacts with and regulates myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2), a master cardiac transcriptional regulator. In cardiomyocytes exposed to biomechanical stimulation, FAK accumulates in the nucleus, binds to and upregulates the transcriptional activity of MEF2 through an interaction with the FAK focal adhesion targeting (FAT) domain. In the crystal structure (2.9 Å resolution), FAT binds to a stably folded groove in the MEF2 dimer, known to interact with regulatory cofactors. FAK cooperates with MEF2 to enhance the expression of . Jun in cardiomyocytes, an important component of hypertrophic response to mechanical stress. These findings underscore a connection between the mechanotransduction involving FAK and transcriptional regulation by MEF2, with potential relevance to the pathogenesis of cardiac disease. Cardoso et al. report the crystal structure of the FAK FAT domain in complex with transcription factor MEF2, and present biochemical and cell-based data that FAK upregulates MEF2 transcriptional activity in cardiomyocytes to regulate the expression of the stress responsive gene . Jun in response to biomechanical stimulation. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Silva J.C.,University of Campinas | Silva J.C.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Silva J.C.,European Synchrotron Radiation Facility | Borges J.C.,University of Sao Paulo | And 4 more authors.
BMC Structural Biology

Background: Ydj1 and Sis1 are structurally and functionally distinct Hsp40 proteins of the yeast cytosol. Sis1 is an essential gene whereas the ydj1 gene is essential for growth at elevated temperatures and cannot complement sis1 gene deletion. Truncated polypeptides capable of complementing the sis1 gene deletion comprise the J-domain of either Sis1 or Ydj1 connected to the G/F region of Sis1 (but not Ydj1). Sis1 mutants in which the G/F was deleted but G/M maintained were capable of complementing the sis1 gene deletion. Results: To investigate the relevance of central domains on the structure and function of Ydj1 and Sis1 we prepared Sis1 constructs deleting specific domains. The mutants had decreased affinity for heated luciferase but were equally capable of stimulating ATPase activity of Hsp70. Detailed low resolution structures were obtained and the overall flexibility of Hsp40 and its mutants were assessed using SAXS methods. Deletion of either the G/M or the G/M plus CTDI domains had little impact on the quaternary structure of Sis1 analyzed by the SAXS technique. However, deletion of the ZFLR-CTDI changed the relative position of the J-domains in Ydj1 in such a way that they ended up resembling that of Sis1. The results revealed that the G/F and G/M regions are not the only flexible domains. All model structures exhibit a common clamp-like conformation. Conclusions: Our results suggest that the central domains, previously appointed as important features for substrate binding, are also relevant keeping the J-domains in their specific relative positions. The clamp-like architecture observed seems also to be favorable to the interactions of Hsp40 with Hsp70. © 2011 Silva et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Pereira M.B.M.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Santos A.M.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Goncalves D.C.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | Cardoso A.C.,Center for Research in Energy and Materials | And 11 more authors.
Nature Communications

Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) contributes to cellular homeostasis under stress conditions. Here we show that αB-crystallin interacts with and confers protection to FAK against calpain-mediated proteolysis in cardiomyocytes. A hydrophobic patch mapped between helices 1 and 4 of the FAK FAT domain was found to bind to the β4-β8 groove of αB-crystallin. Such an interaction requires FAK tyrosine 925 and is enhanced following its phosphorylation by Src, which occurs upon FAK stimulation. αB-crystallin silencing results in calpain-dependent FAK depletion and in the increased apoptosis of cardiomyocytes in response to mechanical stress. FAK overexpression protects cardiomyocytes depleted of αB-crystallin against the stretch-induced apoptosis. Consistently, load-induced apoptosis is blunted in the hearts from cardiac-specific FAK transgenic mice transiently depleted of αB-crystallin by RNA interference. These studies define a role for αB-crystallin in controlling FAK function and cardiomyocyte survival through the prevention of calpain-mediated degradation of FAK. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. Source

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