Membrane-bound trafficking regulates nuclear transport of integral epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and ErbB-2

Ying Nai Wang, Heng Huan Lee, Hong Jen Lee, Yi Du, Hirohito Yamaguchi, Mien Chie Hung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Nuclear localization of multiple receptor-tyrosine kinases (RTKs), such as EGF receptor (EGFR), ErbB-2, FGF receptor (FGFR), and many others, has been reported by several groups. Wepreviously showed that cell surface EGFR is trafficked to the nucleus through a retrograde pathway from the Golgi to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and that EGFR is then translocated to the inner nuclear membrane (INM) through the INTERNET (integral trafficking from the ER to the nuclear envelope transport) pathway. However, the nuclear trafficking mechanisms of other membrane RTKs, apart from EGFR, remain unclear. The purpose of this study was to compare the nuclear transport of EGFR family proteins with that of FGFR-1. Interestingly, we found that digitonin permeabilization, which selectively releases soluble nuclear transporters from the cytoplasm and has been shown to inhibit nuclear transport of FGFR-1, had no effects on EGFR nuclear transport, raising the possibility that EGFR and FGFR-1 use different pathways to be translocated into the nucleus. Using the subnuclear fractionation assay, we further demonstrated that biotinylated cell surface ErbB-2, but not FGFR-1, is targeted to the INM, associating with Sec61β in the INM, similar to the nuclear trafficking of EGFR. Thus, ErbB-2, but not FGFR-1, shows a similar trafficking pathway to EGFR for translocation to the nucleus, indicating that at least two different pathways of nuclear transport exist for cell surface receptors. This finding provides a new direction for investigating the trafficking mechanisms of various nuclear RTKs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16869-16879
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number20
StatePublished - May 11 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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