Journal Articles

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Cell Reports


The TMEM127 gene encodes a transmembrane protein of poorly known function that is mutated in pheochromocytomas, neural crest-derived tumors of adrenomedullary cells. Here, we report that, at single-nucleus resolution, TMEM127-mutant tumors share precursor cells and transcription regulatory elements with pheochromocytomas carrying mutations of the tyrosine kinase receptor RET. Additionally, TMEM127-mutant pheochromocytomas, human cells, and mouse knockout models of TMEM127 accumulate RET and increase its signaling. TMEM127 contributes to RET cellular positioning, trafficking, and lysosome-mediated degradation. Mechanistically, TMEM127 binds to RET and recruits the NEDD4 E3 ubiquitin ligase for RET ubiquitination and degradation via TMEM127 C-terminal PxxY motifs. Lastly, increased cell proliferation and tumor burden after TMEM127 loss can be reversed by selective RET inhibitors in vitro and in vivo. Our results define TMEM127 as a component of the ubiquitin system and identify aberrant RET stabilization as a likely mechanism through which TMEM127 loss-of-function mutations cause pheochromocytoma.


Cp: Cancer, Nedd4, Ret, Tmem127, Degradation, Oncogene, Paraganglioma, Pheochromocytoma, Positioning, Single-Nucleus Sequencing, Tumor Suppressor Gene, Ubiquitin



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