Nkx2-2 homeoprotein is essential for the development of the central nervous system and pancreas. Although the nuclear localization signals of Nkx2-2 have been identified, the responsible transport receptor is still unknown. Here, we demonstrate that imp α1 not only interacts with Nkx2-2 but also transports it into the nucleus in vitro by acting together with imp β1. However, the nuclear import of Nkx2-2 in cells was not inhibited in response to knockdown expression of endogenous imp β1 or over-expression of Bimax2. Furthermore, imp β1 and imp 13, but not imp 4, directly interact with Nkx2-2 and are capable of transporting Nkx2-2 in an in vitro import assay. By GST pull-down assay, we demonstrate that mutation of NLS1 or NLS2 has no effect on interaction with imp α1 or imp 13, but significantly reduced binding to imp β1. Thus, the nuclear import of Nkx2-2 is mediated not only by the classical import pathway but also directly by imp β1 or imp 13.
Lin, W., Xu, P. P., Guo, Y. Y., Jia, Q., & Tao, T. (2017). Nuclear import of Nkx2-2 is mediated by multiple pathways. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, 482(4), 1511–1516. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2016.12.065