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Nature

The same pocket in menin binds both MLL and JUND but has opposite effects on transcription

Publication: Nature

Publication Date: 02/2012

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In a series of projects made possible in part by grant support from the Caring for Carcinoid Foundation, a group of researchers recently solved the three-dimensional crystal structure of menin. Menin is a protein encoded by the multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1) gene. Patients with MEN1 syndrome have a mutation in this gene. They have an increased risk of developing neuroendocrine tumors in several organs. Other CFCF-funded research projects show that sporadic pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors can have mutations in the MEN1 gene.

In an article published in the prestigious journal Nature, researchers reported two distinct cases in which menin may either promote or suppress gene expression, depending on the protein with which it interacts. Through structural and functional analysis, researchers provide a mechanistic explanation for how menin can both positively and negatively regulate gene transcription. These analyses are an important step in understanding how the menin protein may promote neuroendocrine tumor development.

Authors: Huang, J., Gurung, B., Wan, B., Matkar, S., Veniaminova, N., Wan, K., Merchant, J., Hua, X., Lei, M.

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