Press Release(2016.10.27)

The research results by project Leader Kenji Mizuguchi and Dr. Yuko Tsuchiya, and with collaborative group member has been press released.

Please see more details on the website.(These sites are written by Japanese text)


Tokushima University

National Institute of Biomedical Innovation, Health and Nutrition

”Ligand-induced Ordering of the C-terminal Tail Primes STING for Phosphorylation by TBK1” has been publised in EBioMedicine.(2016.6.1)

Ligand-induced Ordering of the C-terminal Tail Primes STING for Phosphorylation by TBK1

Tsuchiya Y., Jounai N., Takeshita F., Ishii J K., Mizuguchi K.,


The innate immune protein Stimulator of interferon genes (STING) promotes the induction of interferon beta (IFN-β) production via the phosphorylation of its C-terminal tail (CTT) by TANK-binding kinase 1 (TBK1). Potent ligands of STING are, therefore, promising candidates for novel anti-cancer drugs or vaccine adjuvants. However, the intrinsically flexible CTT poses serious problems in in silico drug discovery. Here, we performed molecular dynamics simulations of the STING fragment containing the CTT in ligand-bound and unbound forms and observed that the binding of a potent ligand cyclic GMP-AMP (cGAMP) induced a local structure in the CTT, reminiscent of the known structure of a TBK1 substrate. The subsequent molecular biological experiments confirmed the observed dynamics of the CTT and identified essential residues for the activation of the IFN-β promoter, leading us to propose a new mechanism of STING activation.