Caveolin-2 is an accessory molecule and the binding partner of caveolin-1. Previously, we showed that c-Src expression leads to the tyrosine phosphorylation of Cav-2 at position 19. To further investigate the tyrosine phosphorylation of Cav-2, we have now generated a novel phospho-specific antibody directed against phospho-Cav-2 (pY27). Here, we show that Cav-2 is phosphorylated at both tyrosines 19 and 27. We reconstituted this phosphorylation event by recombinantly coexpressing c-Src and Cav-2. We generated a series of Cav-2 constructs harboring the mutation of each tyrosine to alanine, singly or in combination, i.e., Cav-2 Y19A, Y27A, and Y19A/Y27A. Recombinant expression of these mutants in Cos-7 cells demonstrated that neither tyrosine is the unique phosphorylation site, and that double mutation of tyrosines 19 and 27 to alanine abrogates Cav-2 tyrosine phosphorylation. Immunofluorescence analysis of NIH 3T3 cells revealed that the two tyrosine-phosphorylated forms of Cav-2 exhibited some distinct properties. Phospho-Cav-2 (pY19) is concentrated at cell edges and at cell-cell contacts, whereas phospho-Cav-2 (pY27) is distributed in a dotlike pattern throughout the cell surface and cytoplasm. Further functional analysis revealed that tyrosine phosphorylation of Cav-2 has no effect on its targeting to lipid rafts, but clearly disrupts the hetero-oligomerization of Cav-2 with Cav-1. In an attempt to identify upstream mediators, we investigated Cav-2 tyrosine phosphorylation in an endogenous setting. We found that in A431 cells, EGF stimulation is sufficient to induce Cav-2 phosphorylation at tyrosines 19 and 27. However, the behavior of the two phosphorylated forms of Cav-2 diverges upon EGF stimulation. First, phospho-Cav-2 (pY19) and phospho-Cav-2 (pY27) display different localization patterns. In addition, the temporal response to EGF stimulation appears to be different. Cav-2 is phosphorylated at tyrosine 19 in a rapid and transient fashion, whereas phosphorylation at tyrosine 27 is sustained over time. Three SH2 domain-containing proteins, c-Src, Nck, and Ras-GAP, were found to associate with Cav-2 in a phosphorylation-dependent manner. However, phosphorylation at tyrosine 27 appears to be more critical than phosphorylation at tyrosine 19 for this binding to occur. Taken together, these results suggest that, in addition to the common characteristics that these two sites appear to share, phospho-Cav-2 (pY19) and phospho-Cav-2 (pY27) may each possess a set of unique functional roles.
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