Transcriptional regulation by the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) is mediated by hormone binding, receptor dimerization, and coactivator recruitment. Here, we report the crystal structure of the human GR ligand binding domain (LBD) bound to dexamethasone and a coactivator motif derived from the transcriptional intermediary factor 2. Despite structural similarity to other steroid receptors, the GR LBD adopts a surprising dimer configuration involving formation of an intermolecular beta sheet. Functional studies demonstrate that the novel dimer interface is important for GR-mediated activation. The structure also reveals an additional charge clamp that determines the binding selectivity of a coactivator and a distinct ligand binding pocket that explains its selectivity for endogenous steroid hormones. These results establish a framework for understanding the roles of protein-hormone and protein-protein interactions in GR signaling pathways.
SciCrunch is a data sharing and display platform. Anyone can create a custom portal where they can select searchable subsets of hundreds of data sources, brand their web pages and create their community. SciCrunch will push data updates automatically to all portals on a weekly basis. User communities can also add their own data to SciCrunch, however this is not currently a free service.