Crystal structure of IRAK-4
[IRAK4_HUMAN] Defects in IRAK4 are the cause of recurrent isolated invasive pneumococcal disease type 1 (IPD1) [MIM:610799]. Recurrent invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) is defined as two episodes of IPD occurring at least 1 month apart, whether caused by the same or different serotypes or strains. Recurrent IPD occurs in at least 2% of patients in most series, making IPD the most important known risk factor for subsequent IPD. Defects in IRAK4 are the cause of IRAK4 deficiency (IRAK4D) [MIM:607676]. IRAK4 deficiency causes extracellular pyogenic bacterial and fungal infections in otherwise healthy children. 
[IRAK4_HUMAN] Serine/threonine-protein kinase that plays a critical role in initiating innate immune response against foreign pathogens. Involved in Toll-like receptor (TLR) and IL-1R signaling pathways. Is rapidly recruited by MYD88 to the receptor-signaling complex upon TLR activation to form the Myddosome together with IRAK2. Phosphorylates initially IRAK1, thus stimulating the kinase activity and intensive autophosphorylation of IRAK1. Phosphorylates E3 ubiquitin ligases Pellino proteins (PELI1, PELI2 and PELI3) to promote pellino-mediated polyubiquitination of IRAK1. Then, the ubiquitin-binding domain of IKBKG/NEMO binds to polyubiquitinated IRAK1 bringing together the IRAK1-MAP3K7/TAK1-TRAF6 complex and the NEMO-IKKA-IKKB complex. In turn, MAP3K7/TAK1 activates IKKs (CHUK/IKKA and IKBKB/IKKB) leading to NF-kappa-B nuclear translocation and activation. Alternatively, phosphorylates TIRAP to promote its ubiquitination and subsequent degradation. Phosphorylates NCF1 and regulates NADPH oxidase activation after LPS stimulation suggesting a similar mechanism during microbial infections.      
Publication Abstract from PubMed
Interleukin-1 (IL-1) receptor-associated kinase-4 (IRAK-4) is a serine/threonine kinase that plays an essential role in signal transduction by Toll/IL-1 receptors (TIRs). Here, we report the crystal structures of the phosphorylated human IRAK-4 kinase domain in complex with a potent inhibitor and with staurosporine to 2.0 and 2.2 A, respectively. The structures reveal that IRAK-4 has a unique tyrosine gatekeeper residue that interacts with the conserved glutamate from helix alphaC. Consequently, helix alphaC is "pulled in" to maintain the active orientation, and the usual pre-existing hydrophobic back pocket of the ATP-binding site is abolished. The peptide substrate-binding site is more open when compared with other protein kinases due to a marked movement of helix alphaG. The pattern of phosphate ligand interactions in the activation loop bears a close resemblance to that of a tyrosine kinase. Our results provide insights into IRAK-4 function and the design of selective inhibitors.
Crystal structures of IRAK-4 kinase in complex with inhibitors: a serine/threonine kinase with tyrosine as a gatekeeper.,Wang Z, Liu J, Sudom A, Ayres M, Li S, Wesche H, Powers JP, Walker NP Structure. 2006 Dec;14(12):1835-44. PMID:17161373
From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.