Nuclear transport of paxillin depends on focal adhesion dynamics and FAT domains

Aneesh R. Sathe, G. V. Shivashankar, Michael P. Sheetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The nuclear transport of paxillin appears to be crucial for paxillin function but the mechanism of transport remains unclear. Here, we show that the nuclear transport of paxillin is regulated by focal adhesion turnover and the presence of FAT domains. Focal adhesion turnover was controlled using triangular or circular fibronectin islands. Circular islands caused higher focal adhesion turnover and increased the nuclear transport of paxillin relative to triangular islands. Mutating several residues of paxillin had no effect on its nuclear transport, suggesting that the process is controlled by multiple domains. Knocking out FAK (also known as PTK2) and vinculin caused an increase in nuclear paxillin. This could be reversed by rescue with wild-type FAK but not by FAK with a mutated FAT domain, which inhibits paxillin binding. Expressing just the FAT domain of FAK not only brought down nuclear levels of paxillin but also caused a large immobile fraction of paxillin to be present at focal adhesions, as demonstrated by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) studies. Taken together, focal adhesion turnover and FAT domains regulate the nuclear localization of paxillin, suggesting a possible role for transcriptional control, through paxillin, by focal adhesions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1981-1988
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cell Science
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 15 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • FAT domain
  • Focal adhesion
  • Nucleus
  • Paxillin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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