An Arabidopsis immunophilin, AtFKBP12, binds to AtFIP37 (FKBP interacting protein) in an interaction that is disrupted by FK506


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AtFKBP12 is an Arabidopsis cDNA that encodes a protein similar to the mammalian immunophilin, FKBP12. AtFKBP12 was used as ‘bait’ in a yeast 2-hybrid system to screen for cDNAs in Arabidopsis encoding proteins that bind to FKBP12. Two partial cDNAs were recovered encoding the C-terminus of a protein we have calledArabidopsis thalianaFKBP12 interacting protein 37 (AtFIP37). AtFIP37 is similar to a mammalian protein, FAP48, that also binds to FKBP12. The interaction between AtFKBP12 and AtFIP37 in the 2-hybrid system, as assessed by histidine auxotrophy and β-galactosidase activity, was disrupted by FK506, but not by cyclosporin A, a drug that binds to cyclophilin A. AtFIP37 was also shown to bindin vitroto AtFKBP12 in GST-fusion protein binding assays. The binding was abolished by prior incubation of AtFKBP12 with FK506. These findings indicate that an Arabidopsis FKBP12 ortholog encodes a protein that binds FK506 and that the interaction between AtFKBP12 and AtFIP37 may involve the FK506 binding site of AtFKBP12. The interaction provides interesting new opportunities for controlling protein:protein interactionsin vivoin plants.