Distinct functional domains in emerin bind lamin A and DNA-bridging protein BAF

Kenneth K. Lee, Tokuko Haraguchi, Richard S. Lee, Takako Koujin, Yasushi Hiraoka, Katherine L. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

238 Scopus citations


Loss of emerin, a lamin-binding nuclear membrane protein, causes Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy. We analyzed 13 site-directed mutations, and four disease-causing mutations that do not disrupt emerin stability or localization. We show that emerin binds directly to barrier-to-autointegration factor (BAF), a DNA-bridging protein, and that this binding to BAF requires conserved residues in the LEM-motif of emerin. Emerin has two distinct functional domains: the LEM-domain at the N-terminus, which mediates binding to BAF, and a second functional domain in the central region, which mediates binding to lamin A. Disease mutation Δ95-99 mapped to the lamin-binding domain and disrupted lamin A binding in vitro. Two other disease-linked residues, Ser54 and Pro183, mapped outside the BAF and lamin-binding domains, suggesting that emerin may have additional functional domains relevant to disease. The disease-linked emerin proteins all remained active for binding to BAF, both in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that disease can result from the loss of specific molecular interactions between emerin and either lamin A or putative novel partner(s). The demonstration that emerin binds directly to BAF, coupled to similar results for LAP2, provides proof in principle that all LEM-domain nuclear proteins can interact with BAF, with interesting implications for chromatin attachment to the nuclear envelope.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4567-4573
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of cell science
Issue number24
StatePublished - 2001


  • Barrier to autointegration factor
  • Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy
  • LEM-domain
  • Lamin A
  • Lamin-associated polypeptide 2
  • MAN1
  • Nuclear envelope
  • Nuclear lamina

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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