Open Access Open Badges Research

Dynamic subcellular localization of the mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase ARTD10 and interaction with the ubiquitin receptor p62

Henning Kleine14, Andreas Herrmann15, Trond Lamark2, Alexandra H Forst1, Patricia Verheugd1, Juliane Lüscher-Firzlaff1, Barbara Lippok1, Karla LH Feijs1, Nicolas Herzog1, Elisabeth Kremmer3, Terje Johansen2, Gerhard Müller-Newen1 and Bernhard Lüscher1*

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical School, RWTH Aachen University, Pauwelsstraße 30, Aachen, 52074, Germany

2 Molecular Cancer Research Group, Institute of Medical Biology, University of Tromsø, Tromsø, 9037, Norway

3 Helmholtz Zentrum München, Institut für Molekulare Immunologie, Marchioninistr. 25, München, 81377, Germany

4 Present address: Abbott GmbH & Co. KG, Max-Planck-Ring 2a, Wiesbaden, 65205, Germany

5 Present address: Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, CA, 91010, USA

For all author emails, please log on.

Cell Communication and Signaling 2012, 10:28  doi:10.1186/1478-811X-10-28

Published: 20 September 2012



ADP-ribosylation is a posttranslational modification catalyzed in cells by ADP-ribosyltransferases (ARTD or PARP enzymes). The ARTD family consists of 17 members. Some ARTDs modify their substrates by adding ADP-ribose in an iterative process, thereby synthesizing ADP-ribose polymers, the best-studied example being ARTD1/PARP1. Other ARTDs appear to mono-ADP-ribosylate their substrates and are unable to form polymers. The founding member of this latter subclass is ARTD10/PARP10, which we identified as an interaction partner of the nuclear oncoprotein MYC. Biochemically ARTD10 uses substrate-assisted catalysis to modify its substrates. Our previous studies indicated that ARTD10 may shuttle between the nuclear and cytoplasmic compartments. We have now addressed this in more detail.


We have characterized the subcellular localization of ARTD10 using live-cell imaging techniques. ARTD10 shuttles between the cytoplasmic and nuclear compartments. When nuclear, ARTD10 can interact with MYC as measured by bimolecular fluorescence complementation. The shuttling is controlled by a Crm1-dependent nuclear export sequence and a central ARTD10 region that promotes nuclear localization. The latter lacks a classical nuclear localization sequence and does not promote full nuclear localization. Rather this non-conventional nuclear localization sequence results in an equal distribution of ARTD10 between the cytoplasmic and the nuclear compartments. ARTD10 forms discrete and dynamic bodies primarily in the cytoplasm but also in the nucleus. These contain poly-ubiquitin and co-localize in part with structures containing the poly-ubiquitin receptor p62/SQSTM1. The co-localization depends on the ubiquitin-associated domain of p62, which mediates interaction with poly-ubiquitin.


Our findings demonstrate that ARTD10 is a highly dynamic protein. It shuttles between the nuclear and cytosolic compartments dependent on a classical nuclear export sequence and a domain that mediates nuclear uptake. Moreover ARTD10 forms discrete bodies that exchange subunits rapidly. These bodies associate at least in part with the poly-ubiquitin receptor p62. Because this protein is involved in the uptake of cargo into autophagosomes, our results suggest a link between the formation of ARTD10 bodies and autophagy.

Lay abstract

Post-translational modifications refer to changes in the chemical appearance of proteins and occur, as the name implies, after proteins have been synthesized. These modifications frequently affect the behavior of proteins, including alterations in their activity or their subcellular localization. One of these modifications is the addition of ADP-ribose to a substrate from the cofactor NAD+. The enzymes responsible for this reaction are ADP-ribosyltransferases (ARTDs or previously named PARPs). Presently we know very little about the role of mono-ADP-ribosylation of proteins that occurs in cells. We identified ARTD10, a mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase, as an interaction partner of the oncoprotein MYC. In this study we have analyzed how ARTD10 moves within a cell. By using different live-cell imaging technologies that allow us to follow the position of ARTD10 molecules over time, we found that ARTD10 shuttles constantly in and out of the nucleus. In the cytosol ARTD10 forms distinct structures or bodies that themselves are moving within the cell and that exchange ARTD10 subunits rapidly. We have identified the regions within ARTD10 that are required for these movements. Moreover we defined these bodies as structures that interact with p62. This protein is known to play a role in bringing other proteins to a structure referred to as the autophagosome, which is involved in eliminating debris in cells. Thus our work suggests that ARTD10 might be involved in and is regulated by ADP-riboslyation autophagosomal processes.

ARTD10/PARP10; Autophagy; FRAP; iFLAP; Live-cell imaging; NES; NLS; Nucleocytoplasmic shuttling; SQSTM1