SIX3 and SIX6 interact with GEMININ via C-terminal regions
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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The histoarchitecture and function of eye and forebrain depend on a well-controlled balance between cell proliferation and differentiation. For example, the binding of the cell cycle regulator GEMININ to CDT1, which is a part of the pre-replication complex, promotes cell differentiation. Homeodomain transcription factors SIX3 and SIX6 also interact with GEMININ of which SIX3-GEMININ interaction promotes cell proliferation, whereas the nature of SIX6-GEMININ interaction has not been studied to date. We investigated SIX3/SIX6 and GEMININ interactions using bimolecular fluorescence complementation, surface plasmon resonance and isothermal titration calorimetry. Interactions between SIX3/SIX6 and GEMININ were detected in mammalian cells in culture. The presence of the C-terminal regions of SIX3 and SIX6 proteins, but not their SIX domains or homeodomains as previously thought, were required for interaction with GEMININ. Interestingly, the disordered C- and N- terminal regions of GEMININ were involved in binding to SIX3/SIX6. The coiled-coil region of GEMININ, which is the known protein-binding domain and also interacts with CDT1, was not involved in GEMININ-SIX3/SIX6 interaction. Using SPR and ITC, SIX3 bound GEMININ with a micromolar affinity and the binding stoichiometry was 1:2 (SIX3 - GEMININ). The present study gives new insights into the binding properties of SIX proteins, especially the role of their variable and disordered C-terminal regions.