Critical roles for p22phox in the structural maturation and subcellular targeting of Nox3

Yoko Nakano, Botond Banfi, Algirdas J. Jesaitis, Mary C. Dinauer, Lee Ann H. Allen, William M. Nauseef

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Otoconia are small biominerals in the inner ear that are indispensable for the normal perception of gravity and motion. Normal otoconia biogenesis requires Nox3, a Nox (NADPH oxidase) highly expressed in the vestibular system. In HEK-293 cells (human embryonic kidney cells) transfected with the Nox regulatory subunits NoxO1 (Nox organizer 1) and NoxA1 (Nox activator 1), functional murine Nox3 was expressed in the plasma membrane and exhibited a haem spectrum identical with that of Nox2, the electron transferase of the phagocyte Nox. In vitro Nox3 cDNA expressed an ∼ 50 kDa primary translation product that underwent N-linked glycosylation in the presence of canine microsomes. RNAi (RNA interference)-mediated reduction of endogenous p22phox, a subunit essential for stabilization of Nox2 in phagocytes, decreased Nox3 activity in reconstituted HEK-293 cells. p22phox co-precipitated not only with Nox3 and NoxO1 from transfectants expressing all three proteins, but also with NoxO1 in the absence of Nox3, indicating that p22phox physically associated with both Nox3 and with NoxO1. The plasma membrane localization of Nox3 but not of NoxO1 required p22phox. Moreover, the glycosylation and maturation of Nox3 required p22phox expression, suggesting that p22phox was required for the proper biosynthesis and function of Nox3. Taken together, these studies demonstrate critical roles for p22 phox at several distinct points in the maturation and assembly of a functionally competent Nox3 in the plasma membrane.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-108
Number of pages12
JournalBiochemical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1 2007


  • Flavocytochrome b
  • Glycosylation
  • Haem spectrum
  • NADPH oxidase 3 (Nox3)
  • Nox organizer 1 (NOXO1)
  • p22


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