RasGRP1, a Ras guanine-nucleotide exchange factor, critically mediates T cell development and function and controls immunodeficiency and autoimmunity. In this study, we describe a unique mechanism of mobilization and activation of RasGRP1 in response to SDF-1, a chemokine that signals via the G protein-coupled receptor CXCR4. Depletion of RasGRP1 impaired SDF-1-stimulated human T cell migration, expression of the activation marker CD69, and activation of the ERK MAPK pathway, indicating that RasGRP1 mediates SDF-1 functions. SDF-1 treatment caused RasGRP1 to localize to the plasma membrane to activate K-Ras and to the Golgi to activate N-Ras. These events were required for cellular migration and for ERK activation that mediates downstream transcriptional events in response to SDF-1. SDF-1-dependent localization of RasGRP1 did not require its diacylglycerol-binding domain, even though diacyglycerol was previously shown to mediate localization of RasGRP1 in response to Ag stimulation. This domain was, however, required for activity of RasGRP1 after its localization. Intriguingly, SDF-1 treatment of T cells induced the formation of a novel molecular signaling complex containing RasGRP1, Gai2, and ZAP-70. Moreover, SDF-1-mediated signaling by both Gi proteins and ZAP-70 was required for RasGRP1 mobilization. In addition, RasGRP1 mobilization and activation in response to SDF-1 was dependent on TCR expression, suggesting that CXCR4 heterodimerizes with the TCR to couple to ZAP-70 and mobilize RasGRP1. These results increase understanding of the molecular mechanisms that mediate SDF-1 effects on T cells and reveal a novel mechanism of RasGRP1 regulation. Other G protein-coupled receptors may similarly contribute to regulation of RasGRP1.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy