Very-KIND, a KIND domain containing RasGEF, controls dendrite growth by linking Ras small GTPases and MAP2.
The regulation of cytoskeletal components in the dendritic shaft core is critical for dendrite elongation and branching. Here, we report that a brain-specific Ras guanine nucleotide exchange factor (RasGEF) carrying two kinase non-catalytic C-lobe domains (KINDs), very-KIND (v-KIND), regulates microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2). v-KIND is expressed in developing mouse brain, predominantly in the cerebellar granule cells. v-KIND not only activates Ras small GTPases via the C-terminal RasGEF domain, but also specifically binds to MAP2 via the second KIND domain (KIND2), leading to threonine phosphorylation of MAP2. v-KIND overexpression suppresses dendritic extension and branching of hippocampal neurons and cerebellar granule cells, whereas knockdown of endogenous v-KIND expression promotes dendrite growth. These findings suggest that v-KIND mediates a signaling pathway that links Ras and MAP2 to control dendrite growth.