Arrestins in apoptosis.

Kook S, Gurevich VV, Gurevich EV
Handb Exp Pharmacol. 2014 219: 309-39

PMID: 24292837 · PMCID: PMC4516163 · DOI:10.1007/978-3-642-41199-1_16

Programmed cell death (apoptosis) is a coordinated set of events eventually leading to the massive activation of specialized proteases (caspases) that cleave numerous substrates, orchestrating fairly uniform biochemical changes than culminate in cellular suicide. Apoptosis can be triggered by a variety of stimuli, from external signals or growth factor withdrawal to intracellular conditions, such as DNA damage or ER stress. Arrestins regulate many signaling cascades involved in life-or-death decisions in the cell, so it is hardly surprising that numerous reports document the effects of ubiquitous nonvisual arrestins on apoptosis under various conditions. Although these findings hardly constitute a coherent picture, with the same arrestin subtypes, sometimes via the same signaling pathways, reported to promote or inhibit cell death, this might reflect real differences in pro- and antiapoptotic signaling in different cells under a variety of conditions. Recent finding suggests that one of the nonvisual subtypes, arrestin-2, is specifically cleaved by caspases. Generated fragment actively participates in the core mechanism of apoptosis: it assists another product of caspase activity, tBID, in releasing cytochrome C from mitochondria. This is the point of no return in committing vertebrate cells to death, and the aspartate where caspases cleave arrestin-2 is evolutionary conserved in vertebrate, but not in invertebrate arrestins. In contrast to wild-type arrestin-2, its caspase-resistant mutant does not facilitate cell death.

MeSH Terms (11)

Animals Apoptosis Arrestins beta-Arrestins Caspases DNA Damage Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress Humans MAP Kinase Signaling System Signal Transduction Tumor Suppressor Protein p53

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