Structural transitions of the RING1B C-terminal region upon binding the polycomb cbox domain

Renjing Wang, Udayar Ilangovan, Angela K. Robinson, Virgil Schirf, Patricia M. Schwarz, Eileen M. Lafer, Borries Demeler, Andrew P. Hinck, Chongwoo A. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Polycomb group (PcG) proteins are required for maintaining cell identity and stem cell self-renewal. RING1B and Polycomb (Pc) are two components of a multiprotein complex called polycomb repression complex 1 (PRC1) that is essential for establishing and maintaining long-term repressed gene states. Here we characterize the interaction between the C-terminal region of RING1B (C-RING1B) and the Pc cbox domain. The C-RING1B-cbox interaction displays a 1:1 stoichiometry with dissociation constants ranging from 9.2 to 180 nM for the different Pc orthologues. NMR analysis of C-RING1B alone reveals line broadening. However, when it is in complex with the cbox domain, there is a striking change to the NMR spectrum indicative of conformational tightening. This conformational change may arise from the organization of the C-RING1B subdomains. The C-terminal regions of all PcG RING1 proteins are composed of two stretches of conserved sequences separated by a variable linker sequence. While the entire C-RING1B region is required for cbox binding, the N- and C-terminal halves of C-RING1B can be separated and are able to interact, suggesting the presence of an intramolecular interaction within C-RING1B. The flexibility within the C-RING1B structure allowing transitions between the intramolecular bound and unbound states may cause the broadened peaks of the C-RING1B NMR spectrum. Binding the cbox domain stabilizes C-RING1B, whereby broadening is eliminated. The presence of flexible regions could allow C-RING1B to bind a variety of different factors, ultimately recruiting RING1B and its associated PcG proteins to different genomic loci.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8007-8015
Number of pages9
Issue number31
StatePublished - Aug 5 2008


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