Signaling by high-kinase activity BRAF mutants

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Homo sapiens
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BRAF is mutated in about 8% of human cancers, with high prevalence in hairy cell leukemia, melanoma, papillary thyroid and ovarian carcinomas, colorectal cancer and a variety of other tumors (Davies et al, 2002; reviewed in Samatar and Poulikakos, 2014). Most BRAF mutations fall in the activation loop region of the kinase or the adjacent glycine rich region. These mutations promote increased kinase activity either by mimicking the effects of activation loop phosphorylations or by promoting the active conformation of the enzyme (Davies et al, 2002; Wan et al, 2004). Roughly 90% of BRAF mutants are represented by the single missense mutation BRAF V600E (Davies et al, 2002; Wan et al, 2004). Other highly active kinase mutants of BRAF include BRAF G469A and BRAF T599dup. G469 is in the glycine rich region of the kinase domain which plays a role in orienting ATP for catalysis, while T599 is one of the two conserved regulatory phosphorylation sites of the activation loop. Each of these mutants has highly enhanced basal kinase activities, phosphorylates MEK and ERK in vitro and in vivo and is transforming when expressed in vivo (Davies et al, 2002; Wan et al, 2004; Eisenhardt et al, 2011). Further functional characterization shows that these highly active mutants are largely resistant to disruption of the BRAF dimer interface, suggesting that they are able to act as monomers (Roring et al, 2012; Brummer et al, 2006; Freeman et al, 2013; Garnett et al, 2005). Activating BRAF mutations occur for the most part independently of RAS activating mutations, and RAS activity levels are generally low in BRAF mutant cells. Moreover, the kinase activity of these mutants is only slightly elevated by coexpression of G12V KRAS, and biological activity of the highly active BRAF mutants is independent of RAS binding (Brummer et al, 2006; Wan et al, 2004; Davies et al, 2002; Garnett et al, 2005). Although BRAF V600E is inhibited by RAF inhibitors such as vemurafenib, resistance frequently develops, in some cases mediated by the expression of a splice variant that lacks the RAS binding domain and shows elevated dimerization compared to the full length V600E mutant (Poulikakos et al, 2011; reviewed in Lito et al, 2013).

Literature References
PubMed ID Title Journal Year
16702958 Functional analysis of the regulatory requirements of B-Raf and the B-Raf(V600E) oncoprotein

Daly, RJ, Brummer, T, Reth, M, Misawa, Y, Martin, P, Herzog, S

Oncogene 2006
22510884 Distinct requirement for an intact dimer interface in wild-type, V600E and kinase-dead B-Raf signalling

Fiala, GJ, Herr, R, Röring, M, Heilmann, K, Schamel, WW, Saunders, DN, Halbach, S, Capper, D, Brummer, T, Braun, S, von Deimling, A, Eisenhardt, AE

EMBO J. 2012
12068308 Mutations of the BRAF gene in human cancer

Maitland, N, Jayatilake, H, Futreal, PA, Yuen, ST, Marshall, CJ, Menzies, A, Parker, A, Chenevix-Trench, G, Leung, SY, Garnett, MJ, Davis, N, Shipley, J, Cooper, C, Darrow, TL, Marais, R, Paterson, H, Palmieri, G, Floyd, Y, Bottomley, W, Bigner, DD, Bignell, GR, Stevens, C, Cossu, A, Hall, S, Ho, JW, Wilson, R, Mould, C, Gusterson, BA, Watt, S, Cox, C, Riggins, GJ, Flanagan, A, Gray, K, Wooster, R, Hooper, S, Teague, J, Ewing, R, Edkins, S, Seigler, HF, Hargrave, D, Hawes, R, Kosmidou, V, Nicholson, A, Stephens, P, Weber, BL, Hughes, J, Davies, H, Woffendin, H, Stratton, MR, Clegg, S, Dicks, E, Pritchard-Jones, K

Nature 2002
16364920 Wild-type and mutant B-RAF activate C-RAF through distinct mechanisms involving heterodimerization

Garnett, MJ, Barford, D, Paterson, H, Rana, S, Marais, R

Mol. Cell 2005
23352452 Effects of Raf dimerization and its inhibition on normal and disease-associated Raf signaling

Freeman, AK, Ritt, DA, Morrison, DK

Mol. Cell 2013
21190184 Functional characterization of a BRAF insertion mutant associated with pilocytic astrocytoma

Olbrich, H, Röring, M, Janzarik, W, Witt, H, Anh, TN, Korshunov, A, Pfister, SM, Cin, H, Remke, M, Brummer, T, Omran, H, Eisenhardt, AE

Int. J. Cancer 2011
24202393 Tumor adaptation and resistance to RAF inhibitors

Lito, P, Solit, DB, Rosen, N

Nat. Med. 2013
22113612 RAF inhibitor resistance is mediated by dimerization of aberrantly spliced BRAF(V600E)

Graeber, TG, Dahlman, KB, Persaud, Y, Sosman, JA, Kong, X, Ribas, A, Gabay, MT, Shi, H, Lo, RS, Poulikakos, PI, Wargo, JA, Kelley, MC, Misteli, T, Chapman, PB, Titz, B, Flaherty, KT, Janakiraman, M, Ng, C, Tadi, M, Moriceau, G, Atefi, M, Solit, DB, Rosen, N, Salton, M

Nature 2011
15035987 Mechanism of activation of the RAF-ERK signaling pathway by oncogenic mutations of B-RAF

Niculescu-Duvaz, D, Lee, S, Marais, R, Marshall, CJ, Barford, D, Jones, CM, Good, VM, Springer, CJ, Wan, PT, Garnett, MJ, Roe, SM

Cell 2004
25435214 Targeting RAS-ERK signalling in cancer: promises and challenges

Poulikakos, PI, Samatar, AA

Nat Rev Drug Discov 2014
Name Identifier Synonyms
cancer DOID:162 malignant tumor, malignant neoplasm, primary cancer
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