Internally tagged ubiquitin: a tool to identify linear polyubiquitin-modified proteins by mass spectrometry


Ubiquitination controls a plethora of cellular processes. Modifications by linear polyubiquitin have so far been linked with acquired and innate immunity, lymphocyte development and genotoxic stress response. Until now, a single E3 ligase complex (LUBAC), one specific deubiquitinase (OTULIN) and a very few linear polyubiquitinated substrates have been identified. Current methods for studying lysine-based polyubiquitination are not suitable for the detection of linear polyubiquitin-modified proteins. Here, we present an approach to discovering linear polyubiquitin-modified substrates by combining a lysine-less internally tagged ubiquitin (INT-Ub.7KR) with SILAC-based mass spectrometry. We applied our approach in TNFα-stimulated T-REx HEK293T cells and validated several newly identified linear polyubiquitin targets. We demonstrated that linear polyubiquitination of the novel LUBAC substrate TRAF6 is essential for NFκB signaling.

Journal details

Journal Nature Methods
Volume 14
Issue number 5
Pages 504-512
Available online
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