Covalent inhibitors of EGFR family protein kinases induce degradation of human Tribbles 2 (TRIB2) pseudokinase in cancer cells

Foulkes, Daniel M, Byrne, Dominic P, Yeung, Wayland, Shrestha, Safal, Bailey, Fiona P, Ferries, Samantha, Eyers, Claire E ORCID: 0000-0002-3223-5926, Keeshan, Karen, Wells, Carrow, Drewry, David H
et al (show 3 more authors) (2018) Covalent inhibitors of EGFR family protein kinases induce degradation of human Tribbles 2 (TRIB2) pseudokinase in cancer cells. SCIENCE SIGNALING, 11 (549).

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A major challenge associated with biochemical and cellular analysis of pseudokinases is a lack of target-validated small-molecule compounds with which to probe function. Tribbles 2 (TRIB2) is a cancer-associated pseudokinase with a diverse interactome, including the canonical AKT signaling module. There is substantial evidence that human TRIB2 promotes survival and drug resistance in solid tumors and blood cancers and therefore is of interest as a therapeutic target. The unusual TRIB2 pseudokinase domain contains a unique cysteine-rich C-helix and interacts with a conserved peptide motif in its own carboxyl-terminal tail, which also supports its interaction with E3 ubiquitin ligases. We found that TRIB2 is a target of previously described small-molecule protein kinase inhibitors, which were originally designed to inhibit the canonical kinase domains of epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase family members. Using a thermal shift assay, we discovered TRIB2-binding compounds within the Published Kinase Inhibitor Set (PKIS) and used a drug repurposing approach to classify compounds that either stabilized or destabilized TRIB2 in vitro. TRIB2 destabilizing agents, including the covalent drug afatinib, led to rapid TRIB2 degradation in human AML cancer cells, eliciting tractable effects on signaling and survival. Our data reveal new drug leads for the development of TRIB2-degrading compounds, which will also be invaluable for unraveling the cellular mechanisms of TRIB2-based signaling. Our study highlights that small molecule–induced protein down-regulation through drug “off-targets” might be relevant for other inhibitors that serendipitously target pseudokinases.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Hela Cells, U937 Cells, Humans, Neoplasms, Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins, Enzyme Inhibitors, Signal Transduction, Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic, Protein Binding, Alleles, Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases, Small Molecule Libraries, ErbB Receptors, Protein Domains, Afatinib
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2018 09:12
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2023 01:15
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aat7951
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