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The c-Myc protein is a transcription factor that is a central regulator of cell growth and proliferation. Thr-58 is a major phosphorylation site in c-Myc and is a mutational hotspot in Burkitt's and other aggressive human lymphomas, indicating that Thr-58 phosphorylation restricts the oncogenic potential of c-Myc. Mutation of Thr-58 is also associated with increased c-Myc protein stability. Here we show that inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) activity with lithium increases c-Myc stability and inhibits phosphorylation of c-Myc specifically at Thr-58 in vivo. Conversely, overexpression of GSK-3 alpha or GSK-3 beta enhances Thr-58 phosphorylation and ubiquitination of c-Myc. Together, these observations suggest that phosphorylation of Thr-58 mediated by GSK-3 facilitates c-Myc rapid proteolysis by the ubiquitin pathway. Furthermore, we demonstrate that GSK-3 binds c-Myc in vivo and in vitro and that GSK-3 colocalizes with c-Myc in the nucleus, strongly arguing that GSK-3 is the c-Myc Thr-58 kinase. We found that c-MycS, which lacks the N-terminal 100 amino acids of c-Myc, is unable to bind GSK-3; however, mutation of Ser-62, the priming phosphorylation site necessary for Thr-58 phosphorylation, does not disrupt GSK-3 binding. Finally, we show that Thr-58 phosphorylation alters the subnuclear localization of c-Myc, enhancing its localization to discrete nuclear bodies together with GSK-3.
p120-catenin (p120) was originally identified as a tyrosine kinase substrate, and subsequently shown to regulate cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion. Binding of the p120 Arm domain to E-cadherin appears to be necessary to maintain adequate cadherin levels for strong adhesion. In contrast, the sequence amino-terminal to the Arm domain confers a negative regulatory function that is likely to be modulated by phosphorylation. Several agents that induce rapid changes in cell-cell adhesion, including PDBu, histamine, thrombin, and LPA, result in significant changes in p120 S/T phosphorylation. In some cases, these changes are PKC-dependent, but the relationship among adhesion, PKC activation, and p120 phosphorylation is unclear, in part because the relevant p120 phosphorylation sites are unknown. As a crucial step toward directly identifying the function of these modifications in adhesion, we have used two-dimensional tryptic mapping and site-directed mutagenesis to pinpoint the constitutive and PKC-modulated sites of p120 S/T phosphorylation. Of eight sites that have been identified, two were selectively phosphorylated in vitro by GSK3 beta, but in vivo treatment of cells with GSK3 beta inhibitors did not eliminate these sites. PKC stimulation in vivo induced potent dephosphorylation at S268, and partial dephosphorylation of several additional sites. Surprisingly, PKC also strongly induced phosphorylation at S873. These data directly link PKC activation to specific changes in p120 phosphorylation, and identify the target sites associated with the mechanism of PKC-dependent adhesive changes induced by agents such as histamine and PDBu.
We have previously shown that PTH induction of c-fos expression in the rat osteoblastic cell line UMR 106-01 requires the phosphorylation of cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) at serine 133. Here we show that this event is not sufficient for induced transcriptional activity in UMR cells. Serine 129, but not the casein kinase II sites (serines 108, 111, 114, 117, and 121), also plays a role in the activation of CREB. First, by metabolically labeling an epitope-tagged CREB, we determined that, in addition to serine 133, other residues are phosphorylated in vivo. Using mutational analysis of a GAL4-CREB reporter system we demonstrate that serines 129 and 133 are both required for PTH-induced transcriptional activity, whereas the casein kinase II sites are not. Furthermore, PTH failed to induce transcriptional activity of GAL4-CREB in cells treated with genistein, a general tyrosine kinase inhibitor known to inhibit glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) activity, or LiCl, the most specific GSK-3-inhibiting agent known, strongly implicating GSK-3beta in this process. Importantly, although genistein and LiCl each inhibit GSK-3beta activity, neither prevented the phosphorylation of serine 133 induced by PTH. Lastly, when serine 129 is replaced with a negatively charged aspartic acid, LiCl has no effect on the PTH-induced trans-activation of CREB. We propose that GSK-3beta phosphorylates CREB at serine 129 and thus is required for the increased transcriptional activity of CREB in response to PTH.
The wnt pathway regulates the steady state level of beta-catenin, a transcriptional coactivator for the Tcf3/Lef1 family of DNA binding proteins. We demonstrate that Tcf3 can inhibit beta-catenin turnover via its competition with axin and adenomatous polyposis for beta-catenin binding. A mutant of beta-catenin that cannot bind Tcf3 is degraded faster than the wild-type protein in Xenopus embryos and extracts. A fragment of beta-catenin and a peptide encoding the NH2 terminus of Tcf4 that block the interaction between beta-catenin and Tcf3 stimulate beta-catenin degradation, indicating this interaction normally plays an important role in regulating beta-catenin turnover. Tcf3 is a substrate for both glycogen synthase kinase (GSK) 3 and casein kinase (CK) 1epsilon, and phosphorylation of Tcf3 by CKIepsilon stimulates its binding to beta-catenin, an effect reversed by GSK3. Tcf3 synergizes with CK1epsilon to inhibit beta-catenin degradation, whereas CKI-7, an inhibitor of CK1epsilon, reduces the inhibitory effect of Tcf3. Finally, we provide evidence that CK1epsilon stimulates the binding of dishevelled (dsh) to GSk3 binding protein (GBP) in extracts. Along with evidence that a significant amount of Tcf protein is nonnuclear, these findings suggest that CK1epsilon can modulate wnt signaling in vivo by regulating both the beta-catenin-Tcf3 and the GBP-dsh interfaces.
Regulation of beta-catenin degradation by intracellular components of the wnt pathway was reconstituted in cytoplasmic extracts of Xenopus eggs and embryos. The ubiquitin-dependent beta-catenin degradation in extracts displays a biochemical requirement for axin, GSK3, and APC. Axin dramatically accelerates while dishevelled inhibits beta-catenin turnover. Through another domain, dishevelled recruits GBP/Frat1 to the APC-axin-GSK3 complex. Our results confirm and extend models in which inhibition of GSK3 has two synergistic effects: (1) reduction of APC phosphorylation and loss of affinity for beta-catenin and (2) reduction of beta-catenin phosphorylation and consequent loss of its affinity for the SCF ubiquitin ligase complex. Dishevelled thus stabilizes beta-catenin, which can dissociate from the APC/axin complex and participate in transcriptional activation.
The cellular responses to activated Ras vary depending on cell type. Normal cells are often induced into pathways that lead to cell growth arrest, senescence, and/or apoptosis in response to activated Ras expression. These are important protective anti-tumorigenic responses that restrict the propagation of cells bearing activated oncogenes. Here we show that induction of Ha-Ras(Val-12) in Rat-1 fibroblasts resulted in G(1) growth arrest and apoptosis with loss of viable cells that is accompanied by a marked decrease in cyclin D1 levels via increased ubiquitin-proteasome-dependent cyclin D1 turnover. This is in contrast with a rat intestinal epithelial cell line in which induction of Ha-Ras(Val-12) results in transformation associated with sustained proliferation and increased levels of cyclin D1, that is not accompanied by anoikis or apoptosis. Expression of the cyclin D1 mutant (T286A) that contains an alanine for threonine 286 substitution and is resistant to ubiquitin-proteasome degradation in the Ha-Ras(Val-12) expressing Rat-1 cells resulted in a sustained transformed phenotype with no accumulation of cells in G(1). Inhibition of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MEK1/2) pathway partially reversed the Ras-mediated decrease in cyclin D1. Induction of Ha-Ras(Val-12) resulted in activation of Akt kinase and inactivation of glycogen-synthase-3beta kinase that are associated with reduction of cyclin D1 protein. These results suggest that Ras-mediated cyclin D1 degradation in Rat-1 cells appears to be partially dependent on activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway and independent of glycogen-synthase-3beta kinase pathway.
We report the cloning of the skp1+ gene, a Schizosaccharomyces pombe homolog of the glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK-3) family whose members in higher eukaryotes are involved in cell fate determination, nuclear signalling, and hormonal regulation. skp1 is 67% identical to mammalian GSK-3 beta and displays similar biochemical properties in vitro. Like GSK-3 beta, skp1 is phosphorylated on a conserved tyrosine residue, and this phosphorylation is required for efficient activity. skp1 is also phosphorylated at a serine which has been identified as S-335. Phosphorylation at this site is likely to inhibit its function. Unlike the mammalian enzyme, skp1 both tyrosine autophosphorylates in yeast cells and can phosphorylate other proteins on tyrosine in bacteria. The skp1+ gene is not essential. However, cells with deletions in skp1+ are sensitive to heat shock and exhibit defects in sporulation. Overexpression of wild-type skp1+ specifically complements cdc14-118, one of several mutations causing a defect in cytokinesis. In addition, certain phosphorylation site mutants induce a delay or block in cytokinesis when overexpressed. Together, these data identify novel interactions of a fission yeast GSK-3 homolog with elements of the cytokinesis machinery.