Blood Journal
Leading the way in experimental and clinical research in hematology

Role of the intracellular domains of CXCR4 in SDF-1–mediated signaling

  1. Joachim Roland,
  2. Brendan J. Murphy,
  3. Barbara Ahr,
  4. Véronique Robert-Hebmann,
  5. Vincent Delauzun,
  6. Keith E. Nye,
  7. Christian Devaux, and
  8. Martine Biard-Piechaczyk
  1. 1 From the Laboratoire Infections Rétrovirales et Signalisation Cellulaire CNRS UMR 5121, Institut de Biologie, Montpellier, France; St Bartholomew's and The Royal London School of Medicine and Dentistry, London, United Kingdom.


The CXCR4 chemokine receptor is a Gi protein–coupled receptor that triggers multiple intracellular signals in response to stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF-1), including calcium mobilization and p44/42 extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK1/2). Transduced signals lead to cell chemotaxis and are terminated through receptor internalization depending on phosphorylation of the C terminus part of CXCR4. Receptor endocytosis is also required for some receptors to stimulate ERK1/2 and to migrate through a chemokine gradient. In this study, we explored the role played by the 3 intracellular loops (ICL1-3) and the C terminus domain of CXCR4 in SDF-1–mediated signaling by using human embryonic kidney (HEK)–293 cells stably expressing wild-type or mutated forms of CXCR4. ICL3 of CXCR4 is specifically involved in Gi-dependent signals such as calcium mobilization and ERK activation, but does not trigger CXCR4 internalization after SDF-1 binding, indicating that ERK phosphorylation is independent of CXCR4 endocytosis. Surprisingly, ICL2, with or without the aspartic acid, arginine, and tyrosine (DRY) motif, is dispensable for Gi signaling. However, ICL2 and ICL3, as well as the C terminus part of CXCR4, are needed to transduce SDF-1–mediated chemotaxis, suggesting that this event involves multiple activation pathways and/or cooperation of several cytoplasmic domains of CXCR4.

  • Submitted August 6, 2002.
  • Accepted August 21, 2002.
View Full Text