Background: PARP, a 116 kDa nuclear poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase, appears to be involved in DNA repair in response to environmental stress (1). This protein can be cleaved by many ICE-like caspases in vitro (2,3) and is one of the main cleavage targets of caspase-3 in vivo (4,5). In human PARP, the cleavage occurs between Asp214 and Gly215, which separates the PARP amino-terminal DNA binding domain (24 kDa) from the carboxy-terminal catalytic domain (89 kDa) (2,4). PARP helps cells to maintain their viability; cleavage of PARP facilitates cellular disassembly and serves as a marker of cells undergoing apoptosis (6).
Background: The receptor-interacting protein (RIP) family of serine-threonine kinases (RIP, RIP2, RIP3, and RIP4) are important regulators of cellular stress that trigger pro-survival and inflammatory responses through the activation of NF-κB, as well as pro-apoptotic pathways (1). In addition to the kinase domain, RIP contains a death domain responsible for interaction with the death domain receptor Fas and recruitment to TNF-R1 through interaction with TRADD (2,3). RIP-deficient cells show a failure in TNF-mediated NF-κB activation, making the cells more sensitive to apoptosis (4,5). RIP also interacts with TNF-receptor-associated factors (TRAFs) and can recruit IKKs to the TNF-R1 signaling complex via interaction with NEMO, leading to IκB phosphorylation and degradation (6,7). Overexpression of RIP induces both NF-κB activation and apoptosis (2,3). Caspase-8-dependent cleavage of the RIP death domain can trigger the apoptotic activity of RIP (8).
Background: Syk is a protein tyrosine kinase that plays an important role in intracellular signal transduction in hematopoietic cells (1-3). Syk interacts with immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motifs (ITAMs) located in the cytoplasmic domains of immune receptors (4). It couples the activated immunoreceptors to downstream signaling events that mediate diverse cellular responses, including proliferation, differentiation, and phagocytosis (4). There is also evidence of a role for Syk in nonimmune cells and investigators have indicated that Syk is a potential tumor suppressor in human breast carcinomas (5). Tyr323 is a negative regulatory phosphorylation site within the SH2-kinase linker region in Syk. Phosphorylation at Tyr323 provides a direct binding site for the TKB domain of Cbl (6,7). Tyr352 of Syk is involved in the association of PLCγ1 (8). Tyr525 and Tyr526 are located in the activation loop of the Syk kinase domain; phosphorylation at Tyr525/526 of human Syk (equivalent to Tyr519/520 of mouse Syk) is essential for Syk function (9).