The insulin receptor contains a calmodulin-binding domain

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Science  15 Nov 1985:
Vol. 230, Issue 4727, pp. 827-829
DOI: 10.1126/science.3904001


Substantial evidence suggests that calcium has a pivotal role in regulating the initial events through which insulin alters plasma membrane metabolism. Because binding of insulin to its receptor represents the initial site of insulin action in the plasma membrane, studies were undertaken to determine whether the insulin receptor is a calmodulin-binding protein. Preparations enriched in the insulin receptor and calmodulin-binding proteins were isolated from detergent-solubilized rat adipocyte membranes by chromatography with wheat germ agglutinin agarose and calmodulin-conjugated Sepharose, respectively. Substantial purification of a manganese-dependent, insulin-sensitive phosphoprotein of 95K identified as the beta subunit of the insulin receptor was accomplished. Binding and photocovalent cross-linking of iodine-125-labeled calmodulin to these affinity-purified preparations and to isolated plasma membranes, followed by immunoadsorption with insulin receptor antibodies bound to protein A Sepharose, resulted in significant purification of a binding complex of 110K to 140K. These results indicate that the adipocyte insulin receptor or a polypeptide closely associated with the receptor is a calmodulin-binding protein.