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    ATP-binding cassette sub-family G member 2 (ABCG2) is a homodimeric ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter that not only has a key role in helping cancer cells to evade the cytotoxic effects of chemotherapy, but also in protecting organisms from multiple xeno- and endobiotics. Structural studies indicate that substrate and inhibitor (ligands) binding to ABCG2 can be differentiated quantitatively by the number of amino acid contacts, with inhibitors displaying more contacts. Although binding is the obligate initial step in the transport cycle, there is no empirical evidence for one amino acid being primarily responsible for ligand binding. By mutagenesis and biochemical studies, we demonstrated that the phylogenetically conserved amino acid residue, F439, was critical for both transport and the binding of multiple substrates and inhibitors. Structural modeling implied that the π-π interactions from each F439 monomer mediated the binding of a surprisingly diverse array of structurally unrelated substrates and inhibitors and that this symmetrical π-π interaction "clamps" the ligand into the binding pocket. Key molecular features of diverse ABCG2 ligands using the π-π clamp along with structural studies created a pharmacophore model. These novel findings have important therapeutic implications because key properties of ligands interacting with ABCG2 have been disovered. Furthermore, mechanistic insights have been revealed by demonstrating that for ABCG2 a single amino acid is essential for engaging and initiating transport of multiple drugs and xenobiotics. © 2020 Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.


    Tomoka Gose, Talha Shafi, Yu Fukuda, Sourav Das, Yao Wang, Alice Allcock, Ailsa Gavan McHarg, John Lynch, Taosheng Chen, Ikumi Tamai, Anang Shelat, Robert C Ford, John D Schuetz. ABCG2 requires a single aromatic amino acid to "clamp" substrates and inhibitors into the binding pocket. FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. 2020 Apr;34(4):4890-4903

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    PMID: 32067270

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