Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva mutant ACVR1 signals by multiple modalities in the developing zebrafish.Elife. 2020 09 08; 9E
Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) is a rare human genetic disorder characterized by altered skeletal development and extraskeletal ossification. All cases of FOP are caused by activating mutations in the type I BMP/TGFβ cell surface receptor ACVR1, which over-activates signaling through phospho-Smad1/5 (pSmad1/5). To investigate the mechanism by which FOP-ACVR1 enhances pSmad1/5 activation, we used zebrafish embryonic dorsoventral (DV) patterning as an assay for BMP signaling. We determined that the FOP mutants ACVR1-R206H and -G328R do not require their ligand binding domain to over-activate BMP signaling in DV patterning. However, intact ACVR1-R206H has the ability to respond to both Bmp7 and Activin A ligands. Additionally, BMPR1, a type I BMP receptor normally required for BMP-mediated patterning of the embryo, is dispensable for both ligand-independent signaling pathway activation and ligand-responsive signaling hyperactivation by ACVR1-R206H. These results demonstrate that FOP-ACVR1 is not constrained by the same receptor/ligand partner requirements as WT-ACVR1.