Crystal structure of the alpha-E-catenin actin-binding domain

Experimental Data Snapshot

  • Resolution: 2.20 Å
  • R-Value Free: 0.252 
  • R-Value Work: 0.206 
  • R-Value Observed: 0.211 

wwPDB Validation   3D Report Full Report

This is version 1.1 of the entry. See complete history


Force-dependent allostery of the alpha-catenin actin-binding domain controls adherens junction dynamics and functions.

Ishiyama, N.Sarpal, R.Wood, M.N.Barrick, S.K.Nishikawa, T.Hayashi, H.Kobb, A.B.Flozak, A.S.Yemelyanov, A.Fernandez-Gonzalez, R.Yonemura, S.Leckband, D.E.Gottardi, C.J.Tepass, U.Ikura, M.

(2018) Nat Commun 9: 5121-5121

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-07481-7
  • Primary Citation of Related Structures:  
    6DUW, 6DUY, 6DV1

  • PubMed Abstract: 

    α-catenin is a key mechanosensor that forms force-dependent interactions with F-actin, thereby coupling the cadherin-catenin complex to the actin cytoskeleton at adherens junctions (AJs). However, the molecular mechanisms by which α-catenin engages F-actin under tension remained elusive. Here we show that the α1-helix of the α-catenin actin-binding domain (αcat-ABD) is a mechanosensing motif that regulates tension-dependent F-actin binding and bundling. αcat-ABD containing an α1-helix-unfolding mutation (H1) shows enhanced binding to F-actin in vitro. Although full-length α-catenin-H1 can generate epithelial monolayers that resist mechanical disruption, it fails to support normal AJ regulation in vivo. Structural and simulation analyses suggest that α1-helix allosterically controls the actin-binding residue V796 dynamics. Crystal structures of αcat-ABD-H1 homodimer suggest that α-catenin can facilitate actin bundling while it remains bound to E-cadherin. We propose that force-dependent allosteric regulation of αcat-ABD promotes dynamic interactions with F-actin involved in actin bundling, cadherin clustering, and AJ remodeling during tissue morphogenesis.

  • Organizational Affiliation

    Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, Toronto, ON, M5G 1L7, Canada. mitsu.ikura@uhnresearch.ca.

Find similar proteins by:  (by identity cutoff)  |  3D Structure
Entity ID: 1
MoleculeChains Sequence LengthOrganismDetailsImage
Catenin alpha-1
A, B
263Mus musculusMutation(s): 0 
Gene Names: Ctnna1Catna1
Find proteins for P26231 (Mus musculus)
Explore P26231 
Go to UniProtKB:  P26231
Entity Groups  
Sequence Clusters30% Identity50% Identity70% Identity90% Identity95% Identity100% Identity
UniProt GroupP26231
Sequence Annotations
  • Reference Sequence
Experimental Data & Validation

Experimental Data

  • Resolution: 2.20 Å
  • R-Value Free: 0.252 
  • R-Value Work: 0.206 
  • R-Value Observed: 0.211 
  • Space Group: P 21 21 21
Unit Cell:
Length ( Å )Angle ( ˚ )
a = 56.292α = 90
b = 80.607β = 90
c = 104.488γ = 90
Software Package:
Software NamePurpose
HKL-2000data reduction
SCALEPACKdata scaling

Structure Validation

View Full Validation Report

Entry History & Funding Information

Deposition Data

Funding OrganizationLocationGrant Number
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)Canada--

Revision History  (Full details and data files)

  • Version 1.0: 2018-12-19
    Type: Initial release
  • Version 1.1: 2020-01-08
    Changes: Author supporting evidence