G2Cdb::Gene report

Gene id
Gene symbol
Homo sapiens
protein kinase C, epsilon
G00000160 (Mus musculus)

Databases (8)

ENSG00000171132 (Ensembl human gene)
5581 (Entrez Gene)
50 (G2Cdb plasticity & disease)
PRKCE (GeneCards)
176975 (OMIM)
Marker Symbol
HGNC:9401 (HGNC)
Protein Expression
1948 (human protein atlas)
Protein Sequence
Q02156 (UniProt)

Diseases (1)

Disease Nervous effect Mutations Found Literature Mutations Type Genetic association?
D00000081: Thyroid cancer N N (11994357) No mutation found (N) N


  • Isozyme-specific abnormalities of PKC in thyroid cancer: evidence for post-transcriptional changes in PKC epsilon.

    Knauf JA, Ward LS, Nikiforov YE, Nikiforova M, Puxeddu E, Medvedovic M, Liron T, Mochly-Rosen D and Fagin JA

    Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio 45267, USA.

    PKC isozymes are the major binding proteins for tumor-promoting phorbol esters, and PKC activity is abnormal in a number of different human cancers. Less is known about putative structural and functional changes of specific PKC isozymes in human neoplasms. A single-point mutation of PKCalpha at position 881 of the coding sequence has been observed in human pituitary adenomas and up to 50% of thyroid follicular neoplasms, and a rearrangement of PKCepsilon was reported in a thyroid follicular carcinoma cell line, suggesting that these signaling proteins may play a role in thyroid tumorigenesis. To explore this possibility, we examined thyroid neoplasms for mutations and changes in expression levels of PKCepsilon or alpha. None of the 57 follicular adenomas, 26 papillary carcinomas (PCs), 7 follicular carcinomas, or the anaplastic carcinoma harbored the PKCalpha 881A>G mutation. Moreover, none of 15 PCs, 10 follicular adenomas, or 6 follicular carcinomas showed evidence of mutations of PKCepsilon. However, 8 of 11 PCs had major isozyme-specific reductions of the PKCepsilon protein, which occurred through either translational or posttranslational mechanisms. These data indicate that post-transcriptional changes in PKCepsilon are highly prevalent in thyroid tumors and may play a significant role in their development.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA50706, CA72597; NCRR NIH HHS: M01-RR08084; NIDDK NIH HHS: K01DK02781

    The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism 2002;87;5;2150-9

Literature (191)

Pubmed - other

  • PKC{epsilon}-dependent and -independent effects of taurolithocholate on PI3K/PKB pathway and taurocholate uptake in HuH-NTCP cell line.

    Schonhoff CM, Yamazaki A, Hohenester S, Webster CR, Bouscarel B and Anwer MS

    Dept. of Biomedical Sciences, Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, N. Grafton, MA 01536, USA.

    The cholestatic bile acid taurolithocholate (TLC) inhibits biliary secretion of organic anions and hepatic uptake of taurocholate (TC). TLC has been suggested to induce retrieval of Mrp2 from the canalicular membrane via the phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K)/PKB-dependent activation of novel protein kinase Cepsilon (nPKCepsilon) in rat hepatocytes. The aim of the present study was to determine whether TLC-induced inhibition of TC uptake may also involve PI3K-dependent activation of PKCepsilon in HuH7 cells stably transfected with human Na(+)-dependent TC-cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) (HuH-NTCP cells). To avoid direct competition for uptake, cells were pretreated with TLC, washed, and then incubated with (3)H-TC to determine TC uptake. TLC produced time- and dose-dependent inhibition of TC uptake. TLC inhibited TC uptake competitively without affecting NTCP membrane translocation. A PI3K inhibitor failed to reverse TLC-induced TC uptake inhibition and TLC-inhibited PKB phosphorylation. TLC did activate nPKCepsilon as evidenced by increased membrane translocation and nPKCepsilon-Ser(729) phosphorylation. Overexpression of dominant negative-nPKCepsilon reversed TLC-induced inhibition of PKB phosphorylation but not of TC uptake. Finally, cAMP prevented TLC-induced inhibition of TC uptake via the PI3K pathway, and the prevention is due to the sum of cAMP-induced stimulation and TLC-induced inhibition of TC uptake. Taken together, these results suggest that TLC-induced inhibition of PKB, but not of TC uptake, is mediated via nPKCepsilon. Activation of nPKCepsilon and inhibition of TC uptake by TLC are not mediated via the PI3K/PKB pathway.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK-33436, DK-56108, DK-65975, R01 DK065975, R01 DK090010

    American journal of physiology. Gastrointestinal and liver physiology 2009;297;6;G1259-67

  • Multiple loci influence erythrocyte phenotypes in the CHARGE Consortium.

    Ganesh SK, Zakai NA, van Rooij FJ, Soranzo N, Smith AV, Nalls MA, Chen MH, Kottgen A, Glazer NL, Dehghan A, Kuhnel B, Aspelund T, Yang Q, Tanaka T, Jaffe A, Bis JC, Verwoert GC, Teumer A, Fox CS, Guralnik JM, Ehret GB, Rice K, Felix JF, Rendon A, Eiriksdottir G, Levy D, Patel KV, Boerwinkle E, Rotter JI, Hofman A, Sambrook JG, Hernandez DG, Zheng G, Bandinelli S, Singleton AB, Coresh J, Lumley T, Uitterlinden AG, Vangils JM, Launer LJ, Cupples LA, Oostra BA, Zwaginga JJ, Ouwehand WH, Thein SL, Meisinger C, Deloukas P, Nauck M, Spector TD, Gieger C, Gudnason V, van Duijn CM, Psaty BM, Ferrucci L, Chakravarti A, Greinacher A, O'Donnell CJ, Witteman JC, Furth S, Cushman M, Harris TB and Lin JP

    National Human Genome Research Institute, Division of Intramural Research, Bethesda, MD, USA. ganeshs@mail.nih.gov

    Measurements of erythrocytes within the blood are important clinical traits and can indicate various hematological disorders. We report here genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for six erythrocyte traits, including hemoglobin concentration (Hb), hematocrit (Hct), mean corpuscular volume (MCV), mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH), mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC) and red blood cell count (RBC). We performed an initial GWAS in cohorts of the CHARGE Consortium totaling 24,167 individuals of European ancestry and replication in additional independent cohorts of the HaemGen Consortium totaling 9,456 individuals. We identified 23 loci significantly associated with these traits in a meta-analysis of the discovery and replication cohorts (combined P values ranging from 5 x 10(-8) to 7 x 10(-86)). Our findings include loci previously associated with these traits (HBS1L-MYB, HFE, TMPRSS6, TFR2, SPTA1) as well as new associations (EPO, TFRC, SH2B3 and 15 other loci). This study has identified new determinants of erythrocyte traits, offering insight into common variants underlying variation in erythrocyte measures.

    Funded by: Medical Research Council: G0000111; NHLBI NIH HHS: R01 HL086694, R01 HL086694-01A1, R01 HL086694-02, R01 HL086694-03; NIDDK NIH HHS: K24 DK078737, P30 DK063491, P30 DK063491-019004, P30 DK063491-029004, P30 DK063491-039004, P30 DK063491-049004, P30 DK063491-05, U01 DK066174

    Nature genetics 2009;41;11;1191-8

  • PKC(alpha) and PKC(epsilon) differentially regulate Legionella pneumophila-induced GM-CSF.

    Vardarova K, Scharf S, Lang F, Schmeck B, Opitz B, Eitel J, Hocke AC, Slevogt H, Flieger A, Hippenstiel S, Suttorp N and N'guessan PD

    Dept of Internal Medicine/Infectious Diseases and Pulmonary Medicine, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Augustenburger Platz 1, 13353 Berlin, Germany. dje_philippe.nguessan@charite.de

    Legionella pneumophila is an important causative agent of severe pneumonia in humans. The human alveolar epithelium is an effective barrier for inhaled microorganisms and actively participates in the initiation of innate host defense. Although secretion of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is essential for the elimination of invading Legionella spp., mechanisms of Legionella pneumophila-induced release of this cytokine are widely unknown. In this study, we have demonstrated a toll-like receptor (TLR)2- and TLR5-dependent release of GM-CSF in L. pneumophila-infected human alveolar epithelial cells. GM-CSF secretion was not dependent on the bacteria type II or type IV secretion system. Furthermore, an increase in protein kinase C (PKC) activity, particularly PKC(alpha) and PKC(epsilon), was noted. Blocking of PKC(alpha) and PKC(epsilon) activity or expression, but not of PKC(beta), PKC(delta), PKC(eta), PKC(theta), and PKC(zeta), significantly reduced the synthesis of GM-CSF in infected cells. While PKC(alpha) was critical for the initiation of a nuclear factor-kappaB-mediated GM-CSF expression, PKC(epsilon) regulated GM-CSF production via activator protein 1. Thus, differential regulation of GM-CSF, production by PKC isoforms, contributes to the host response in Legionnaires' disease.

    The European respiratory journal 2009;34;5;1171-9

  • Genetical genomic determinants of alcohol consumption in rats and humans.

    Tabakoff B, Saba L, Printz M, Flodman P, Hodgkinson C, Goldman D, Koob G, Richardson HN, Kechris K, Bell RL, Hübner N, Heinig M, Pravenec M, Mangion J, Legault L, Dongier M, Conigrave KM, Whitfield JB, Saunders J, Grant B, Hoffman PL and WHO/ISBRA Study on State and Trait Markers of Alcoholism

    Department of Pharmacology, University of Colorado, Denver, Aurora, CO, USA. boris.tabakoff@ucdenver.edu

    Background: We have used a genetical genomic approach, in conjunction with phenotypic analysis of alcohol consumption, to identify candidate genes that predispose to varying levels of alcohol intake by HXB/BXH recombinant inbred rat strains. In addition, in two populations of humans, we assessed genetic polymorphisms associated with alcohol consumption using a custom genotyping array for 1,350 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Our goal was to ascertain whether our approach, which relies on statistical and informatics techniques, and non-human animal models of alcohol drinking behavior, could inform interpretation of genetic association studies with human populations.

    Results: In the HXB/BXH recombinant inbred (RI) rats, correlation analysis of brain gene expression levels with alcohol consumption in a two-bottle choice paradigm, and filtering based on behavioral and gene expression quantitative trait locus (QTL) analyses, generated a list of candidate genes. A literature-based, functional analysis of the interactions of the products of these candidate genes defined pathways linked to presynaptic GABA release, activation of dopamine neurons, and postsynaptic GABA receptor trafficking, in brain regions including the hypothalamus, ventral tegmentum and amygdala. The analysis also implicated energy metabolism and caloric intake control as potential influences on alcohol consumption by the recombinant inbred rats. In the human populations, polymorphisms in genes associated with GABA synthesis and GABA receptors, as well as genes related to dopaminergic transmission, were associated with alcohol consumption.

    Conclusion: Our results emphasize the importance of the signaling pathways identified using the non-human animal models, rather than single gene products, in identifying factors responsible for complex traits such as alcohol consumption. The results suggest cross-species similarities in pathways that influence predisposition to consume alcohol by rats and humans. The importance of a well-defined phenotype is also illustrated. Our results also suggest that different genetic factors predispose alcohol dependence versus the phenotype of alcohol consumption.

    Funded by: Howard Hughes Medical Institute; NHLBI NIH HHS: HL35018, P01 HL035018; NIAAA NIH HHS: AA006420, AA013162, AA013517-INIA, AA013522-INIA, AA016649-INIA, AA016663-INIA, AA16922, K01 AA016922, P50 AA006420, P60 AA006420, R01 AA013162, R24 AA013162, R24 AA015512, U01 AA013517, U01 AA013522, U01 AA016649, U01 AA016663, U24 AA013517, U24 AA013522; NIDDK NIH HHS: R01 DK100340; Wellcome Trust

    BMC biology 2009;7;70

  • Protein kinases A and C in post-mortem prefrontal cortex from persons with major depression and normal controls.

    Shelton RC, Hal Manier D and Lewis DA

    Department of Psychiatry, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37212, USA. richard.shelton@vanderbilt.edu

    Major depression (MDD) is a common and potentially life-threatening condition. Widespread neurobiological abnormalities suggest abnormalities in fundamental cellular mechanisms as possible physiological mediators. Cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase [also known as protein kinase A (PKA)] and protein kinase C (PKC) are important components of intracellular signal transduction cascades that are linked to G-coupled receptors. Previous research using both human peripheral and post-mortem brain tissue specimens suggests that a subset of depressed patients exhibit reduced PKA and PKC activity, which has been associated with reduced levels of specific protein isoforms. Prior research also suggests that specific clinical phenotypes, particularly melancholia and suicide, may be particularly associated with low activity. This study examined PKA and PKC protein levels in human post-mortem brain tissue samples from persons with MDD (n=20) and age- and sex-matched controls (n=20). Specific PKA subunits and PKC isoforms were assessed using Western blot analysis in post-mortem samples from Brodmann area 10, which has been implicated in reinforcement and reward mechanisms. The MDD sample exhibited significantly lower protein expression of PKA regulatory Ialpha (RIalpha), PKA catalytic alpha (Calpha) and Cbeta, PKCbeta1, and PKCepsilon relative to controls. The melancholic subgroup showed low PKA RIalpha and PKA Cbeta, while the portion of the MDD sample who died by suicide had low PKA RIalpha and PKA Calpha. These data continue to support the significance of abnormalities of these two key kinases, and suggest linkages between molecular endophenotypes and specific clinical phenotypes.

    Funded by: NIMH NIH HHS: MH073630, MH084053, P50 MH084053, R01 MH073630

    The international journal of neuropsychopharmacology 2009;12;9;1223-32

  • Hyaluronan-CD44 interaction with protein kinase C(epsilon) promotes oncogenic signaling by the stem cell marker Nanog and the Production of microRNA-21, leading to down-regulation of the tumor suppressor protein PDCD4, anti-apoptosis, and chemotherapy resistance in breast tumor cells.

    Bourguignon LY, Spevak CC, Wong G, Xia W and Gilad E

    Endocrine Unit, Department of Medicine, University of California at San Francisco, and Veterans Affairs Medical Center, San Francisco, California 94121, USA. lilly.bourguignon@ucsf.edu

    Multidrug resistance and disease relapse is a challenging clinical problem in the treatment of breast cancer. In this study, we investigated the hyaluronan (HA)-induced interaction between CD44 (a primary HA receptor) and protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon), which regulates a number of human breast tumor cell functions. Our results indicate that HA binding to CD44 promotes PKCepsilon activation, which, in turn, increases the phosphorylation of the stem cell marker, Nanog, in the breast tumor cell line MCF-7. Phosphorylated Nanog is then translocated from the cytosol to the nucleus and becomes associated with RNase III DROSHA and the RNA helicase p68. This process leads to microRNA-21 (miR-21) production and a tumor suppressor protein (e.g. PDCD4 (program cell death 4)) reduction. All of these events contribute to up-regulation of inhibitors of apoptosis proteins (IAPs) and MDR1 (multidrug-resistant protein), resulting in anti-apoptosis and chemotherapy resistance. Transfection of MCF-7 cells with PKCepsilon or Nanog-specific small interfering RNAs effectively blocks HA-mediated PKCepsilon-Nanog signaling events, abrogates miR-21 production, and increases PDCD4 expression/eIF4A binding. Subsequently, this PKCepsilon-Nanog signaling inhibition causes IAP/MDR1 down-regulation, apoptosis, and chemosensitivity. To further evaluate the role of miR-21 in oncogenesis and chemoresistance, MCF-7 cells were also transfected with a specific anti-miR-21 inhibitor in order to silence miR-21 expression and inhibit its target functions. Our results indicate that anti-miR-21 inhibitor not only enhances PDCD4 expression/eIF4A binding but also blocks HA-CD44-mediated tumor cell behaviors. Thus, this newly discovered HA-CD44 signaling pathway should provide important drug targets for sensitizing tumor cell apoptosis and overcoming chemotherapy resistance in breast cancer cells.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA 78633, R01 CA066163, R01 CA078633, R01 CA66163; NIAMS NIH HHS: P01 AR039448, P01 AR39448

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2009;284;39;26533-46

  • Recognition of an intra-chain tandem 14-3-3 binding site within PKCepsilon.

    Kostelecky B, Saurin AT, Purkiss A, Parker PJ and McDonald NQ

    Structural Biology Laboratory, London Research Institute, Cancer Research UK, 44 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PX, UK.

    The phosphoserine/threonine binding protein 14-3-3 stimulates the catalytic activity of protein kinase C-epsilon (PKCepsilon) by engaging two tandem phosphoserine-containing motifs located between the PKCepsilon regulatory and catalytic domains (V3 region). Interaction between 14-3-3 and this region of PKCepsilon is essential for the completion of cytokinesis. Here, we report the crystal structure of 14-3-3zeta bound to a synthetic diphosphorylated PKCepsilon V3 region revealing how a consensus 14-3-3 site and a divergent 14-3-3 site cooperate to bind to 14-3-3 and so activate PKCepsilon. Thermodynamic data show a markedly enhanced binding affinity for two-site phosphopeptides over single-site 14-3-3 binding motifs and identifies Ser 368 as a gatekeeper phosphorylation site in this physiologically relevant 14-3-3 ligand. This dual-site intra-chain recognition has implications for other 14-3-3 targets, which seem to have only a single 14-3-3 motif, as other lower affinity and cryptic 14-3-3 gatekeeper sites might exist.

    EMBO reports 2009;10;9;983-9

  • MATER protein as substrate of PKCepsilon in human cumulus cells.

    Maraldi T, Riccio M, Sena P, Marzona L, Nicoli A, La Marca A, Marmiroli S, Bertacchini J, La Sala G and De Pol A

    Department of Anatomy and Histology, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Via Del Pozzo 71, 41100 Modena, Italy. tullia.maraldi@unimo.it

    High activity of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase/Akt pathway in cumulus cells plays an important role in FSH regulation of cell function and Protein Kinase C epsilon (PKCepsilon) collaborates with these signalling pathways to regulate cell proliferation. Relevant roles in follicular development are played by Maternal Antigen That Embryos Require (MATER) that is a cumulus cell- and oocyte-specific protein dependent on the maternal genome. We recently demonstrated that human MATER localizes at specific domains of oocytes and, for the first time, also in cumulus cells. MATER contains a carboxy-terminal leucine-rich repeat domain involved in protein-protein interactions regulating different cellular functions. Here we investigated the functional role of MATER. Thus, we performed coimmunoprecipitation experiments using HEK293T cells expressing human MATER; a similar approach was then followed in human cumulus/follicular cells. In MATER(+)HEK293T cells, we observed that this protein acts as a phosphorylation substrate of PKCepsilon. Western blot experiments indicate that, unlike oocytes, human cumulus cells express PKCepsilon. Immunoprecipitation and confocal analysis suggest for the first time that MATER protein interacts with this protein kinase in cumulus cells under physiological conditions. Since PKCepsilon is known to collaborate with antiapoptotic signalling pathways, this suggests a novel mechanism for the function of MATER in follicular maturation.

    Molecular human reproduction 2009;15;8;499-506

  • PKC epsilon has an alcohol-binding site in its second cysteine-rich regulatory domain.

    Das J, Pany S, Rahman GM and Slater SJ

    Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, University of Houston, Houston, TX 77204, USA. jdas@uh.edu

    Alcohols regulate the expression and function of PKC (protein kinase C), and it has been proposed that an alcohol-binding site is present in PKC alpha in its C1 domain, which consists of two cysteine-rich subdomains, C1A and C1B. A PKC epsilon-knockout mouse showed a significant decrease in alcohol consumption compared with the wild-type. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether an alcohol-binding site could be present in PKC epsilon. Here we show that ethanol inhibited PKC epsilon activity in a concentration-dependent manner with an EC50 (equilibrium ligand concentration at half-maximum effect) of 43 mM. Ethanol, butanol and octanol increased the binding affinity of a fluorescent phorbol ester SAPD (sapintoxin-D) to PKC epsilon C1B in a concentration-dependent manner with EC50 values of 78 mM, 8 mM and 340 microM respectively, suggesting the presence of an allosteric alcohol-binding site in this subdomain. To identify this site, PKC epsilon C1B was photolabelled with 3-azibutanol and 3-azioctanol and analysed by MS. Whereas azibutanol preferentially labelled His236, Tyr238 was the preferred site for azioctanol. Inspection of the model structure of PKC epsilon C1B reveals that these residues are 3.46 A (1 A=0.1 nm) apart from each other and form a groove where His236 is surface-exposed and Tyr238 is buried inside. When these residues were replaced by alanine, it significantly decreased alcohol binding in terms of both photolabelling and alcohol-induced SAPD binding in the mutant H236A/Y238A. Whereas Tyr238 was labelled in mutant H236A, His236 was labelled in mutant Y238A. The present results provide direct evidence for the presence of an allosteric alcohol-binding site on protein kinase C epsilon and underscore the role of His236 and Tyr238 residues in alcohol binding.

    Funded by: PHS HHS: G096452

    The Biochemical journal 2009;421;3;405-13

  • A 20-amino acid module of protein kinase C{epsilon} involved in translocation and selective targeting at cell-cell contacts.

    Diouf B, Collazos A, Labesse G, Macari F, Choquet A, Clair P, Gauthier-Rouvière C, Guérineau NC, Jay P, Hollande F and Joubert D

    CNRS UMR5203, INSERM, U661, University of Montpellier I and II, France.

    In the pituitary gland, activated protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms accumulate either selectively at the cell-cell contact (alpha and epsilon) or at the entire plasma membrane (beta1 and delta). The molecular mechanisms underlying these various subcellular locations are not known. Here, we demonstrate the existence within PKCepsilon of a cell-cell contact targeting sequence (3CTS) that, upon stimulation, is capable of targeting PKCdelta, chimerin-alpha1, and the PKCepsilon C1 domain to the cell-cell contact. We show that this selective targeting of PKCepsilon is lost upon overexpression of 3CTS fused to a (R-Ahx-R)(4) (where Ahx is 6-aminohexanoic acid) vectorization peptide, reflecting a dominant-negative effect of the overexpressed 3CTS on targeting selectivity. 3CTS contains a putative amphipathic alpha-helix, a 14-3-3-binding site, and the Glu-374 amino acid, involved in targeting selectivity. We show that the integrity of the alpha-helix is important for translocation but that 14-3-3 is not involved in targeting selectivity. However, PKCepsilon translocation is increased when PKCepsilon/14-3-3 interaction is abolished, suggesting that phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate activation may initiate two sets of PKCepsilon functions, those depending on 14-3-3 and those depending on translocation to cell-cell contacts. Thus, 3CTS is involved in the modulation of translocation via its 14-3-3-binding site, in cytoplasmic desequestration via the alpha-helix, and in selective PKCepsilon targeting at the cell-cell contact via Glu-374.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2009;284;28;18808-15

  • Formation of endothelial lumens requires a coordinated PKCepsilon-, Src-, Pak- and Raf-kinase-dependent signaling cascade downstream of Cdc42 activation.

    Koh W, Sachidanandam K, Stratman AN, Sacharidou A, Mayo AM, Murphy EA, Cheresh DA and Davis GE

    Department of Medical Pharmacology and Physiology, School of Medicine, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65212, USA.

    In this study, we present data showing that Cdc42-dependent lumen formation by endothelial cells (ECs) in three-dimensional (3D) collagen matrices involves coordinated signaling by PKCepsilon in conjunction with the Src-family kinases (SFKs) Src and Yes. Activated SFKs interact with Cdc42 in multiprotein signaling complexes that require PKCepsilon during this process. Src and Yes are differentially expressed during EC lumen formation and siRNA suppression of either kinase, but not Fyn or Lyn, results in significant inhibition of EC lumen formation. Concurrent with Cdc42 activation, PKCepsilon- and SFK-dependent signaling converge to activate p21-activated kinase (Pak)2 and Pak4 in steps that are also required for EC lumen formation. Pak2 and Pak4 further activate two Raf kinases, B-Raf and C-Raf, leading to ERK1 and ERK2 (ERK1/2) activation, which all seem to be necessary for EC lumen formation. This work reveals a multicomponent kinase signaling pathway downstream of integrin-matrix interactions and Cdc42 activation involving PKCepsilon, Src, Yes, Pak2, Pak4, B-Raf, C-Raf and ERK1/2 to control EC lumen formation in 3D collagen matrices.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL59373, HL79460, R01 HL059373

    Journal of cell science 2009;122;Pt 11;1812-22

  • The divergent roles of protein kinase C epsilon and delta in simulated ischaemia-reperfusion injury in human myocardium.

    Sivaraman V, Hausenloy DJ, Kolvekar S, Hayward M, Yap J, Lawrence D, Di Salvo C and Yellon DM

    The Hatter Institute and Centre for Cardiology, University College London Hospital, 67 Chenies Mews, London WC1E6HX, UK.

    Experimental studies suggest that cardioprotection can be achieved through either the activation of PKC-epsilon prior to the index ischaemic episode or the inhibition of PKC-delta at the onset of reperfusion. However, whether these PKC isoforms exert such divergent roles in human myocardium, subjected to simulated ischaemia-reperfusion injury, is unclear. Human atrial trabeculae were isolated from right atrial appendages harvested from patients undergoing elective cardiac surgery. These were subjected to 90 min of hypoxia followed by 120 min of reoxygenation, at the end of which the recovery of baseline contractile function was determined. Atrial trabeculae were randomised to receive various treatment protocols comprising a peptide activator of PKC-epsilon, a peptide inhibitor of PKC-delta and their respective inactive control peptides. Administering the PKC-delta peptide inhibitor at reoxygenation improved the recovery of function at all the concentrations tested (39.3+/-1.4% at 5 nM, 52.4+/-2.9% at 50 nM and 46.8+/-2.9% at 500 nM versus the control group, 27.5+/-1.4%: N > or = 6/group: P<0.02). Preconditioning with the PKC-epsilon peptide activator improved the recovery of function (40.0+/-0.8% at 50 nM and 49.7+/-3.1% at 500 nM versus the control group 27.5+/-1.4%: N > or = 6/group: P<0.02). This cardioprotective effect was comparable to that achieved by a standard hypoxic preconditioning protocol (52.3+/-3.2%). Interestingly, administering the PKC-epsilon activator (500 nM) at the onset of reperfusion also improved the recovery of contractile function (40.7+/-2.1% versus 27.5+/-1.5%: N > or = 6/group: P < 0.05). In human myocardium, cardioprotection can be achieved by either inhibiting PKC-delta or activating PKC-epsilon at the onset of reperfusion. In addition, PKC-epsilon activation offers cardioprotection when administered as a preconditioning strategy.

    Funded by: British Heart Foundation: RG/08/015/26411; Department of Health

    Journal of molecular and cellular cardiology 2009;46;5;758-64

  • Signal transduction of constitutively active protein kinase C epsilon.

    Garczarczyk D, Toton E, Biedermann V, Rosivatz E, Rechfeld F, Rybczynska M and Hofmann J

    Division of Medical Biochemistry, Biocenter, Innsbruck Medical University, Innsbruck, Austria.

    The protein kinase C (PKC) family is the most prominent target of tumor-promoting phorbol esters. For the PKCepsilon isozyme, different intracellular localizations and oncogenic potential in several but not all experimental systems have been reported. To obtain information about PKCepsilon-signaling, we investigated the effects of constitutively active rat PKCepsilon (PKCepsilonA/E, alanine 159 is replaced by glutamic acid) in HeLa cells in a doxycycline-inducible vector. Upon induction of PKCepsilonA/E expression by doxycycline, the major part of PKCepsilonA/E was localized to the Golgi. This led (i) to phosphorylations of PKCepsilon(S729), Elk-1(S383), PDK1(S241) and Rb(S807/S811), (ii) to elevated expression of receptor of activated C kinase 2 (RACK2) after 12 h, and (iii) increased colony formation in soft agar, increased cell migration and invasion, but not to decreased doubling time. Following induction of PKCepsilonA/E-expression by doxycycline for 24 h and additional short-term treatment with 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA), PKCepsilonA/E translocated to the plasma membrane and increased phosphorylation of MARCKS(S152/156). Treatment with doxycycline/TPA or TPA alone increased phosphorylations of Elk-1(S383), PDK1(S241), Rb(S807/S811), PKCdelta(T505), p38MAPK(T180/Y182), MEK1/2(S217/S221) and ERK2(T185/T187). MARCKS was not phosphorylated after treatment with TPA alone, demonstrating that in this system it is phosphorylated only by PKCepsilon localized to the plasma membrane but not by PKCalpha or delta, the other TPA-responsive PKC isozymes in HeLa cells. These results demonstrate that PKCepsilon can induce distinctly different signaling from the Golgi and from the plasma membrane.

    Cellular signalling 2009;21;5;745-52

  • Phorbol ester-induced PKCepsilon down-modulation sensitizes AML cells to TRAIL-induced apoptosis and cell differentiation.

    Gobbi G, Mirandola P, Carubbi C, Micheloni C, Malinverno C, Lunghi P, Bonati A and Vitale M

    Department of Anatomy, Pharmacology and Forensic Medicine, Human Anatomy Section, University of Parma, Ospedale Maggiore, Parma, Italy.

    Despite the relevant therapeutic progresses made in these last 2 decades, the prognosis of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) remains poor. Phorbol esters are used at very low concentrations as differentiating agents in the therapy of myeloid leukemias. Tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), in turn, is a death ligand that spares normal cells and is therefore currently under clinical trials for cancer therapy. Emerging evidence, however, suggests that TRAIL is also involved in nonapoptotic functions, like cell differentiation. PKCepsilon is differentially modulated along normal hematopoiesis, and its levels modulate the response of hematopoietic precursors to TRAIL. Here, we investigated the effects of the combination of phorbol esters (phorbol ester 4-beta-phorbol-12,13-dibutyrate [PDBu]) and TRAIL in the survival/differentiation of AML cells. We demonstrate here that PDBu sensitizes primary AML cells to both the apoptogenic and the differentiative effects of TRAIL via PKCepsilon down-modulation, without affecting TRAIL receptor surface expression. We believe that the use of TRAIL in combination with phorbol esters (or possibly more specific PKCepsilon down-modulators) might represent a significative improvement of our therapeutic arsenal against AML.

    Blood 2009;113;13;3080-7

  • miR-205 Exerts tumor-suppressive functions in human prostate through down-regulation of protein kinase Cepsilon.

    Gandellini P, Folini M, Longoni N, Pennati M, Binda M, Colecchia M, Salvioni R, Supino R, Moretti R, Limonta P, Valdagni R, Daidone MG and Zaffaroni N

    Department of Experimental Oncology and Laboratories, Fondazione Istituto Di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan, Italy.

    Limited information is available concerning the expression and role of microRNAs in prostate cancer. In this study, we investigated the involvement of miR-205 in prostate carcinogenesis. Significantly lower miR-205 expression levels were found in cancer than in normal prostate cell lines as well as in tumor compared with matched normal prostate tissues, with a particularly pronounced reduction in carcinomas from patients with local-regionally disseminated disease. Restoring the expression of miR-205 in prostate cancer cells resulted in cell rearrangements consistent with a mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition, such as up-regulation of E-cadherin and reduction of cell locomotion and invasion, and in the down-regulation of several oncogenes known to be involved in disease progression (i.e., interleukin 6, caveolin-1, EZH2). Our evidence suggests that these events are driven by the concurrent repression of specific predicted miR-205 targets, namely N-chimaerin, ErbB3, E2F1, E2F5, ZEB2, and protein kinase Cepsilon. Strikingly, the latter seemed to play a direct role in regulating epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. In fact, its down-regulation led to a cell phenotype largely reminiscent of that of cells ectopically expressing miR-205. Overall, we showed for the first time that miR-205 exerts a tumor-suppressive effect in human prostate by counteracting epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and reducing cell migration/invasion, at least in part through the down-regulation of protein kinase Cepsilon.

    Cancer research 2009;69;6;2287-95

  • Protein kinase C-epsilon induces caveolin-dependent internalization of vascular adenosine 5'-triphosphate-sensitive K+ channels.

    Jiao J, Garg V, Yang B, Elton TS and Hu K

    Division of Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA.

    Vascular ATP-sensitive K(+) (K(ATP)) channels are critical regulators of arterial tone and, thus, blood flow in response to local metabolic needs. They are important targets for clinically used drugs to treat hypertensive emergency and angina. It is known that protein kinase C (PKC) activation inhibits K(ATP) channels in vascular smooth muscles. However, the mechanism by which PKC inhibits the channel remains unknown. Here we report that caveolin-dependent internalization is involved in PKC-epsilon-mediated inhibition of vascular K(ATP) channels (Kir6.1 and SUR2B) by phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate or angiotensin II in human embryonic kidney 293 cells and human dermal vascular smooth muscle cells. We showed that Kir6.1 substantially overlapped with caveolin-1 at the cell surface. Cholesterol depletion with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin significantly reduced, whereas overexpression of caveolin-1 largely enhanced, PKC-induced inhibition of Kir6.1/SUR2B currents. Importantly, we demonstrated that activation of PKC-epsilon caused internalization of K(ATP) channels, the effect that was blocked by depletion of cholesterol with methyl-beta-cyclodextrin, expression of dominant-negative dynamin mutant K44E, or knockdown of caveolin-1 with small interfering RNA. Moreover, patch-clamp studies revealed that PKC-epsilon-mediated inhibition of the K(ATP) current induced by PMA or angiotensin II was reduced by a dynamin mutant, as well as small interfering RNA targeting caveolin-1. The reduction in the number of plasma membrane K(ATP) channels by PKC activation was further confirmed by cell surface biotinylation. These studies identify a novel mechanism by which the levels of vascular K(ATP) channels could be rapidly downregulated by internalization. This finding provides a novel mechanistic insight into how K(ATP) channels are regulated in vascular smooth muscle cells.

    Hypertension (Dallas, Tex. : 1979) 2008;52;3;499-506

  • The major chemical-detoxifying system of UDP-glucuronosyltransferases requires regulated phosphorylation supported by protein kinase C.

    Basu NK, Kole L, Basu M, Chakraborty K, Mitra PS and Owens IS

    Heritable Disorders Branch, NICHD, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892-1830, USA.

    Finding rapid, reversible down-regulation of human UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) in LS180 cells following curcumin treatment led to the discovery that UGTs require phosphorylation. UGTs, distributed primarily in liver, kidney, and gastrointestinal tract, inactivate aromatic-like metabolites and a vast number of dietary and environmental chemicals, which reduces the risk of toxicities, mutagenesis, and carcinogenesis. Our aim here is to determine relevant kinases and mechanism(s) regulating phosphorylation of constitutive UGTs in LS180 cells and 10 different human UGT cDNA-transfected COS-1 systems. Time- and concentration-dependent inhibition of immunodetectable [(33)P]orthophosphate in UGTs and protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon), following treatment of LS180 cells with curcumin or the PKC inhibitor calphostin-C, suggested UGT phosphorylation is supported by active PKC(s). Immunofluorescent and co-immunoprecipitation studies with UGT-transfected cells showed co-localization of UGT1A7His and PKCepsilon and of UGT1A10His and PKCalpha or PKCdelta. Inhibition of UGT activity by PKCepsilon-specific antagonist peptide or by PKCepsilon-targeted destruction with PKCepsilon-specific small interference RNA and activation of curcumin-down-regulated UGTs with typical PKC agonists verified a central PKC role in glucuronidation. Moreover, in vitro phosphorylation of nascent UGT1A7His by PKCepsilon confirms it is a bona fide PKC substrate. Finally, catalase or herbimycin-A inhibition of constitutive or hydrogen peroxide-activated-UGTs demonstrated that reactive oxygen species-related oxidants act as second messengers in maintaining constitutive PKC-dependent signaling evidently sustaining UGT phosphorylation and activity. Because cells use signal transduction collectively to detect and respond appropriately to environmental changes, this report, combined with our earlier demonstration that specific phospho-groups in UGT1A7 determined substrate selections, suggests regulated phosphorylation allows adaptations regarding differential phosphate utilization by UGTs to function efficiently.

    Funded by: Intramural NIH HHS

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2008;283;34;23048-61

  • The scaffold MyD88 acts to couple protein kinase Cepsilon to Toll-like receptors.

    Faisal A, Saurin A, Gregory B, Foxwell B and Parker PJ

    Protein Phosphorylation Laboratory, London Research Institute, Cancer Research UK, London WC2A 3PX, United Kingdom.

    Mice lacking protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) are hypersensitive to both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial infections; however, the mechanism of PKCepsilon coupling to the Toll-like receptors (TLRs), responsible for pathogen detection, is poorly understood. Here we sought to investigate the mechanism of PKCepsilon involvement in TLR signaling and found that PKCepsilon is recruited to TLR4 and phosphorylated on two recently identified sites in response to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulation. Phosphorylation at both of these sites (Ser-346 and Ser-368) resulted in PKCepsilon binding to 14-3-3beta. LPS-induced PKCepsilon phosphorylation, 14-3-3beta binding, and recruitment to TLR4 were all dependent on expression of the scaffold protein MyD88. In mouse embryo fibroblasts and activated macrophages from MyD88 knock-out mice, LPS-stimulated PKCepsilon phosphorylation was reduced compared with wild type cells. Acute knockdown of MyD88 in LPS-responsive 293 cells also resulted in complete loss of Ser-346 phosphorylation and TLR4/PKCepsilon association. By contrast, MyD88 overexpression in 293 cells resulted in constitutive phosphorylation of PKCepsilon. A general role for MyD88 was evidenced by the finding that phosphorylation of PKCepsilon was induced by the activation of all TLRs tested that signal through MyD88 (i.e. all except TLR3) both in RAW cells and in primary human macrophages. Functionally, it is established that phosphorylation of PKCepsilon at these two sites is required for TLR4- and TLR2-induced NFkappaB reporter activation and IkappaB degradation in reconstituted PKCepsilon(-/-) cells. This study therefore identifies the scaffold protein MyD88 as the link coupling TLRs to PKCepsilon recruitment, phosphorylation, and downstream signaling.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2008;283;27;18591-600

  • Phorbol ester-stimulated NF-kappaB-dependent transcription: roles for isoforms of novel protein kinase C.

    Holden NS, Squires PE, Kaur M, Bland R, Jones CE and Newton R

    Airways Inflammation Group, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

    Since protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms are variously implicated in the activation of NF-kappaB, we have investigated the role of PKC in the activation of NF-kappaB-dependent transcription by the diacyl glycerol (DAG) mimetic, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), and by tumour necrosis factor (TNF) alpha in pulmonary A549 cells. The PKC selective inhibitors, Ro31-8220, Gö6976, GF109203X and Gö6983, revealed no effect on TNFalpha-induced NF-kappaB DNA binding and a similar lack of effect on serine 32/36 phosphorylated IkappaBalpha and the loss of total IkappaBalpha indicates that activation of the core IKK-IkappaBalpha-NF-kappaB cascade by TNFalpha does not involve PKC. In contrast, differential sensitivity of an NF-kappaB-dependent reporter to Ro31-8220, Gö6976, GF109203X and Gö6983 (EC(50)s 0.46 microM, 0.34 microM, >10 microM and >10 microM respectively) suggests a role for protein kinase D in transcriptional activation by TNFalpha. Compared with TNFalpha, PMA weakly induces NF-kappaB DNA binding and this effect was not associated with serine 32/36 phosphorylation of IkappaBalpha. However, PMA-stimulated NF-kappaB DNA binding was inhibited by Ro31-8220 (10 microM), GF109203X (10 microM) and Gö6983 (10 microM), but not by Gö6976 (10 microM), suggesting a role for novel PKC isoforms. Furthermore, a lack of positive effect of calcium mobilising agents on both NF-kappaB DNA binding and on transcriptional activation argues against major roles for classical PKCs. This, combined with the ability of both GF109203X and Gö6983 to prevent enhancement of TNFalpha-induced NF-kappaB-dependent transcription by PMA, further indicates a role for novel PKCs in NF-kappaB transactivation. Finally, siRNA-mediated knockdown of PKCdelta and epsilon expression did not affect TNFalpha-induced NF-kappaB-dependent transcription. However, knockdown of PKCdelta expression significantly inhibited PMA-stimulated luciferase activity, whereas knockdown of PKCepsilon was without effect. Furthermore, combined knockdown of PKCdelta and epsilon revealed an increased inhibitory effect on PMA-stimulated NF-kappaB-dependent transcription suggesting that PMA-induced NF-kappaB-dependent transcription is driven by novel PKC isoforms, particularly PKCdelta and epsilon.

    Cellular signalling 2008;20;7;1338-48

  • Preconditioning mediated by sublethal oxygen-glucose deprivation-induced cyclooxygenase-2 expression via the signal transducers and activators of transcription 3 phosphorylation.

    Kim EJ, Raval AP and Perez-Pinzon MA

    Cerebral Vascular Disease Research Center, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida, USA.

    The signal transducers and activators of transcription (STATs) were found to be essential for cardioprotection. However, their role in preconditioning (PC) neuroprotection remains undefined. Previously, our studies showed that PC mediated a signaling cascade that involves activation of epsilon protein kinase C (varepsilonPKC), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2), and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) pathways. However, the intermediate pathway by which ERK1/2 activates COX-2 was not defined. In this study, we investigated whether the PC-induced signaling pathway requires phosphorylation of STAT isoforms for COX-2 expression. To mimic PC or lethal ischemia, mixed cortical neuron/astrocyte cell cultures were subjected to 1 and/or 4 h of oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD), respectively. The results indicated serine phosphorylation of STAT3 after PC or varepsilonPKC activation. Inhibition of either varepsilonPKC or ERK1/2 activation abolished PC-induced serine phosphorylation of STAT3. Additionally, inhibition of STAT3 prevented PC-induced COX-2 expression and neuroprotection against OGD. Therefore, our findings suggest that PC signaling cascade involves STAT3 activation after varepsilonPKC and ERK1/2 activation. Finally, we show that STAT3 activation mediates COX-2 expression and ischemic tolerance.

    Funded by: NINDS NIH HHS: NS045676, NS054147, NS05820, NS34773, P01 NS005820, P01 NS005820-390027, R01 NS034773, R01 NS034773-09, R01 NS045676, R01 NS045676-04, R01 NS054147, R01 NS054147-03, R29 NS034773

    Journal of cerebral blood flow and metabolism : official journal of the International Society of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 2008;28;7;1329-40

  • Protein kinase C epsilon confers resistance of MCF-7 cells to TRAIL by Akt-dependent activation of Hdm2 and downregulation of p53.

    Shankar E, Sivaprasad U and Basu A

    Department of Molecular Biology and Immunology, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, TX 76107, USA.

    Protein kinase C epsilon (PKC epsilon ) acts as an antiapoptotic protein and inhibits tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF)-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL)-induced apoptosis in MCF-7 breast cancer cells. Members of the TNF receptor superfamily trigger apoptosis independent of the tumor suppressor protein p53, which primarily affects DNA damage-induced apoptosis. We have previously shown that PKC epsilon acts upstream of Akt to inhibit receptor-initiated cell death. Since Akt can regulate p53, we have examined the involvement of p53 in PKC epsilon-mediated TRAIL resistance. Overexpression of PKC epsilon in MCF-7 cells (MCF-7/PKC epsilon ) caused a decrease in p53 and an increase in human homolog of murine double minute 2 (Hdm2) and phospho-Hdm2. Depletion of p53 by siRNA attenuated, whereas depletion of Hdm2 enhanced TRAIL-mediated apoptosis. Knockdown of Akt decreased Hdm2 phosphorylation, increased p53 level and potentiated TRAIL-induced cell death. Depletion of epsilon from MCF-7 cells caused an increase in p53, whereas knockdown of p53 caused a decrease in Bid mRNA. Depletion of Akt from MCF-7/PKC epsilon cells resulted in an increase in p53 and Bid. These results suggest that PKC epsilon mediates TRAIL resistance by Akt-mediated phosphorylation of Hdm2 resulting in suppression of p53 expression and downregulation of Bid in MCF-7 breast cancer cells.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA71727

    Oncogene 2008;27;28;3957-66

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon binds peripherin and induces its aggregation, which is accompanied by apoptosis of neuroblastoma cells.

    Sunesson L, Hellman U and Larsson C

    Center for Molecular Pathology, Lund University, Entrance 78, 3rd floor, Malmö University Hospital, UMAS SE-205 02 Malmö

    A hallmark of the afflicted nervous tissue in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is the presence of protein aggregates, which to a large extent contain the intermediate filament protein peripherin. Here we show that activation of protein kinase C (PKC) or overexpression of PKCepsilon induces the aggregation of peripherin in cultured neuroblastoma cells with elevated amounts of peripherin. The formation of aggregates was coupled to an increased apoptosis, suggesting a functional link between these events. Both induction of aggregates and apoptosis were suppressed in cells that had been transfected with small interfering RNAs targeting PKCepsilon. PKCepsilon and peripherin associate as shown by co-immunoprecipitation, and the interaction is dependent on and mediated by the C1b domain of PKCepsilon. The interaction was specific for PKCepsilon since corresponding structures from other isoforms did not co-precipitate peripherin, with the exception for PKCeta and -, which pulled down minute amounts. PKCepsilon interacts with vimentin through the same structures but does not induce its aggregation. When the PKCepsilon C1b domain is expressed in neuroblastoma cells together with peripherin, both phorbol ester-induced peripherin aggregation and apoptosis are abolished, supporting a model in which PKCepsilon through its interaction with peripherin facilitates its aggregation and subsequent cell death. These events may be prevented by expressing molecules that bind peripherin at the same site as PKCepsilon.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2008;283;24;16653-64

  • Differential modulation of unapposed connexin 43 hemichannel electrical conductance by protein kinase C isoforms.

    Hawat G and Baroudi G

    Centre de Biomédecine, Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur de Montréal, Montréal, Québec, Canada.

    Opening of unapposed connexin 43 hemichannels (Cx43Hc) in the plasma membrane results in altered ionic homeostasis leading to cell damage. Although it is generally acknowledged that Cx43Hc function is regulated by protein kinase C (PKC), information regarding the functional role of PKC in the modulation of Cx43Hc electrical conductance is lacking. In this work, we used the patch-clamp technique to study the effect of phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), a general PKC activator, on the electrical conductance of exogenous Cx43Hc expressed in tsA201 cells. Subsequently, a matrix of synthetic PKC isoform-specific inhibitor peptides was used to dissect the functional role of individual PKC isoforms in Cx43Hc regulation. Superfusion with 10 nM PMA abolished Cx43Hc currents by 74%, an effect that was prevented by pretreatment with a general PKC inhibitor, GF109203X. It is interesting to note that intracellular diffusion of epsilon V1-2 (0.1 microM), an epsilon PKC-specific inhibitor peptide, completely antagonized PMA-induced current inhibition. Cell dialysis with either beta II- or delta PKC inhibitor peptides partially decreased PMA effect. Neither alpha- nor beta I PKC inhibition altered PMA-induced current reduction. This study shows for the first time that Cx43Hc electrical conductance is inhibited after PKC activation. Moreover, this inhibition is predominantly mediated by the "novel" epsilon PKC isoform, whereas partial inhibition may be provided by the "conventional" beta II PKC as well as the "novel" delta PKC isoforms.

    Pflugers Archiv : European journal of physiology 2008;456;3;519-27

  • Role of PKCepsilon in PGF2alpha-stimulated MMP-2 secretion from human ciliary muscle cells.

    Husain S and Crosson CE

    Department of Ophthalmology, Hewitt Laboratory of the Ola B. Williams Glaucoma Center, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC 29425, USA. Husain@musc.edu

    Studies were designed to examine the roles of individual protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms in the prostaglandin F(2alpha) (PGF(2alpha))-induced matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) secretion from human ciliary muscle cells. Studies utilized primary cultures of human ciliary muscle cells. Individual PKC isoforms were detected by Western blotting, using PKC-isoform-specific antibodies. To evaluate MMP-2 secretion, cells were serum-starved overnight, treated with PGF(2alpha) (1 micromol/L) for 4 h and the media analyzed for MMP-2 by Western blotting. To assess ERK1/2 activation, cells were serum-starved overnight, treated with PGF(2alpha) (1 micromol/L) for 5 min and cell lysates analyzed for ERK1/2 phosphorylation by Western blot analysis. To evaluate the roles of individual PKC isoforms, cells were pretreated with PKC inhibitors or siRNAs prior to the addition of PGF(2alpha). In cultured human ciliary muscle cells, the PKC isoforms exhibiting the highest level of expression were PKCalpha, epsilon, iota and lambda. The delta and eta isoforms exhibited moderate levels of expression and beta, gamma, and phi were not detected. The administration of PGF(2alpha) (1 micromol/L) primarily induced the translocation of PKCepsilon from cytosol to the membrane fraction, as well as increased MMP-2 secretion and ERK1/2 phosphorylation. The secretion of MMP-2 was inhibited by pretreatment with the broad-range PKC inhibitor, chelerythrine chloride; however, this response was not blocked by Go-6976, an inhibitor of conventional PKC isoforms. The PGF(2alpha)-induced secretion of MMP-2 was also blocked by pretreatment with the PKCepsilon-selective peptide translocation inhibitor, EAVSLKPT, or the transfection of siRNA-targeting PKCepsilon. The activation of ERK1/2 was inhibited by chelerythrine and the PKCepsilon translocation inhibitor. Human ciliary muscle cells express the alpha, epsilon, iota and lambda PKC isoforms. Stimulation of FP receptors in these cells activates PKCepsilon, resulting in ERK1/2 activation and an eventual increase in MMP-2 secretion. These data support the idea that the activation of FP receptors in vivo modulate uveoscleral outflow through the PKCepsilon-dependent secretion of MMPs.

    Funded by: NEI NIH HHS: EY-09741, EY-14793

    Journal of ocular pharmacology and therapeutics : the official journal of the Association for Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics 2008;24;3;268-77

  • Protein kinase C-epsilon regulates sphingosine 1-phosphate-mediated migration of human lung endothelial cells through activation of phospholipase D2, protein kinase C-zeta, and Rac1.

    Gorshkova I, He D, Berdyshev E, Usatuyk P, Burns M, Kalari S, Zhao Y, Pendyala S, Garcia JG, Pyne NJ, Brindley DN and Natarajan V

    Department of Medicine, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60637, USA.

    The signaling pathways by which sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) potently stimulates endothelial cell migration and angiogenesis are not yet fully defined. We, therefore, investigated the role of protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms, phospholipase D (PLD), and Rac in S1P-induced migration of human pulmonary artery endothelial cells (HPAECs). S1P-induced migration was sensitive to S1P(1) small interfering RNA (siRNA) and pertussis toxin, demonstrating coupling of S1P(1) to G(i). Overexpression of dominant negative (dn) PKC-epsilon or -zeta, but not PKC-alpha or -delta, blocked S1P-induced migration. Although S1P activated both PLD1 and PLD2, S1P-induced migration was attenuated by knocking down PLD2 or expressing dnPLD2 but not PLD1. Blocking PKC-epsilon, but not PKC-zeta, activity attenuated S1P-mediated PLD stimulation, demonstrating that PKC-epsilon, but not PKC-zeta, was upstream of PLD. Transfection of HPAECs with dnRac1 or Rac1 siRNA attenuated S1P-induced migration. Furthermore, transfection with PLD2 siRNA, infection of HPAECs with dnPKC-zeta, or treatment with myristoylated PKC-zeta peptide inhibitor abrogated S1P-induced Rac1 activation. These results establish that S1P signals through S1P(1) and G(i) to activate PKC-epsilon and, subsequently, a PLD2-PKC-zeta-Rac1 cascade. Activation of this pathway is necessary to stimulate the migration of lung endothelial cells, a key component of the angiogenic process.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL R01 79396

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2008;283;17;11794-806

  • The identification and characterization of novel PKCepsilon phosphorylation sites provide evidence for functional cross-talk within the PKC superfamily.

    Durgan J, Cameron AJ, Saurin AT, Hanrahan S, Totty N, Messing RO and Parker PJ

    Protein Phosphorylation Laboratory, London Research Institute, Cancer Research UK, 44 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PX, UK.

    PKCepsilon (protein kinase Cepsilon) is a phospholipid-dependent serine/threonine kinase that has been implicated in a broad array of cellular processes, including proliferation, survival, migration, invasion and transformation. Here we demonstrate that, in vitro, PKCepsilon undergoes autophosphorylation at three novel sites, Ser(234), Ser(316) and Ser(368), each of which is unique to this PKC isoform and is evolutionarily conserved. We show that these sites are phosphorylated over a range of mammalian cell lines in response to a number of different stimuli. Unexpectedly, we find that, in a cellular context, these phosphorylation events can be mediated in-trans by cPKC (classical PKC) isoforms. The functional significance of this cross-talk is illustrated through the observation that the cPKC-mediated phosphorylation of PKCepsilon at residue Ser(368) controls an established PKCepsilon scaffold interaction. Thus our current findings identify three new phosphorylation sites that contribute to the isoform-specific function of PKCepsilon and highlight a novel and direct means of cross-talk between different members of the PKC superfamily.

    Funded by: Medical Research Council; NIAAA NIH HHS: AA013588

    The Biochemical journal 2008;411;2;319-31

  • Cdc42- and Rac1-mediated endothelial lumen formation requires Pak2, Pak4 and Par3, and PKC-dependent signaling.

    Koh W, Mahan RD and Davis GE

    Department of Medical Pharmacology and Physiology, School of Medicine, Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO 65212, USA.

    Rho GTPases regulate a diverse spectrum of cellular functions involved in vascular morphogenesis. Here, we show that Cdc42 and Rac1 play a key role in endothelial cell (EC) lumen and tube formation as well as in EC invasion in three-dimensional (3D) collagen matrices and that their regulation is mediated by various downstream effectors, including Pak2, Pak4, Par3 and Par6. RNAi-mediated or dominant-negative suppression of Pak2 or Pak4, two major regulators of cytoskeletal signaling downstream of Cdc42 or Rac1, markedly inhibits EC lumen and tube formation. Both Pak2 and Pak4 phosphorylation strongly correlate with the lumen formation process in a manner that depends on protein kinase C (PKC)-mediated signaling. We identify PKCepsilon and PKCzeta as regulators of EC lumenogenesis in 3D collagen matrices. Two polarity proteins, Par3 and Par6, are also required for EC lumen and tube formation, as they establish EC polarity through their association with Cdc42 and atypical PKC. In our model, disruption of any member in the Cdc42-Par3-Par6-PKCzeta polarity complex impairs EC lumen and tube formation in 3D collagen matrices. This work reveals novel regulators that control the signaling events mediating the crucial lumen formation step in vascular morphogenesis.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL59373, HL79460

    Journal of cell science 2008;121;Pt 7;989-1001

  • Differential regulation of Moraxella catarrhalis-induced interleukin-8 response by protein kinase C isoforms.

    Slevogt H, Maqami L, Vardarowa K, Beermann W, Hocke AC, Eitel J, Schmeck B, Weimann A, Opitz B, Hippenstiel S, Suttorp N and N'Guessan PD

    Dept of Internal Medicine/Infectious Diseases and Respiratory Medicine, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany. hortense.slevogt@charite.de

    Moraxella catarrhalis is a major cause of infectious exacerbations of chronic obstructive lung disease. In pulmonary epithelial cells, M. catarrhalis induces release of the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin (IL)-8, which plays a pivotal role in orchestrating airway inflammation. The present study demonstrated that protein kinase (PK)C was activated by Moraxella infection and positively regulated M. catarrhalis-triggered nuclear factor (NF)-kappaB activation and subsequent IL-8 release. Activation of the PKC/NF-kappaB signalling pathway was found to be dependent on expression of the Moraxella-specific ubiquitous surface protein A2. In addition, it was shown that specific isoforms of PKC play differential roles in the fine-tuning of the M. catarrhalis-induced NF-kappaB-dependent gene expression through controlling il8 promoter activity. Inhibition of PKCalpha and epsilon with chemical inhibitors or using short interfering RNA-mediated gene silencing significantly suppressed, whereas inhibition of PKCtheta increased, the M. catarrhalis-induced IL-8 transcription and cytokine release. In conclusion, it was shown that Moraxella catarrhalis infection activates protein kinase C and its isoforms alpha, epsilon and theta, which differentially regulate interleukin-8 transcription in human pulmonary epithelial cells.

    The European respiratory journal 2008;31;4;725-35

  • Probiotics ameliorate the hydrogen peroxide-induced epithelial barrier disruption by a PKC- and MAP kinase-dependent mechanism.

    Seth A, Yan F, Polk DB and Rao RK

    Dept. of Physiology, Univ. of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN 38163, USA.

    Probiotics promote intestinal epithelial integrity and reduce infection and diarrhea. We evaluated the effect of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG-produced soluble proteins (p40 and p75) on the hydrogen peroxide-induced disruption of tight junctions and barrier function in Caco-2 cell monolayers. Pretreatment of cell monolayers with p40 or p75 attenuated the hydrogen peroxide-induced decrease in transepithelial resistance and increase in inulin permeability in a time- and dose-dependent manner. p40 and p75 also prevented hydrogen peroxide-induced redistribution of occludin, ZO-1, E-cadherin, and beta-catenin from the intercellular junctions and their dissociation from the detergent-insoluble fractions. Both p40 and p75 induced a rapid increase in the membrane translocation of PKCbetaI and PKCepsilon. The attenuation of hydrogen peroxide-induced inulin permeability and redistribution of tight junction proteins by p40 and p75 was abrogated by Ro-32-0432, a PKC inhibitor. p40 and p75 also rapidly increased the levels of phospho-ERK1/2 in the detergent-insoluble fractions. U0126 (a MAP kinase inhibitor) attenuated the p40- and p75-mediated reduction of hydrogen peroxide-induced tight junction disruption and inulin permeability. These studies demonstrate that probiotic-secretory proteins protect the intestinal epithelial tight junctions and the barrier function from hydrogen peroxide-induced insult by a PKC- and MAP kinase-dependent mechanism.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: AA12307, R01 AA012307; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK065788, DK54993, DK55532, R01 DK054993, R01 DK054993-05, R01 DK055532, R01 DK056008, R01 DK056008-09, R56 DK055532

    American journal of physiology. Gastrointestinal and liver physiology 2008;294;4;G1060-9

  • D4 dopamine receptor enhances angiotensin II-stimulated aldosterone secretion through PKC-epsilon and calcium signaling.

    Chang HW, Wu VC, Huang CY, Huang HY, Chen YM, Chu TS, Wu KD and Hsieh BS

    Nephrology Division, Department of Internal Medicine, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.

    Aldosterone secretion is subjected to dopaminergic regulation. Our previous study showed that both human D2 and D4 dopamine receptors (D2R and D4R) modulate aldosterone secretion, but in opposing directions. The inhibitory effect of D2R is mediated by attenuating protein kinase C-micro (PKC-micro) and calcium-dependent signaling. The mechanism of D4R effect on angiotensin II (AII)-stimulated aldosterone secretion is explored in this study. Experiments were done with primary human adrenal cortical cells and human adrenocarcinoma (NCI-H295R) cells. Activation of different PKC isoforms was detected by specific phospho-PKC antibodies and PKC translocation. The role of calcium-dependent signaling was examined by measuring the cytoplasmic inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate (IP(3)) and calcium ([Ca(2+)](i)). The D4R agonist PD-168,077 enhanced AII-stimulated aldosterone synthesis and secretion as early as 30 min following exposure independently of the modulation of aldosterone synthase (CYP11B2) transcription. CYP11B2 mRNA level elevated by AII was augmented by D4R in the later period. These effects were reversed by the D4R antagonist L-745,870. AII activated PKC-alpha/betaII, -epsilon, and -micro but not PKC-delta, -theta, or -zeta/lambda of H295R cells. The D4R agonist selectively enhanced AII-stimulated PKC-epsilon phosphorylation and its translocation to the cell membrane. Furthermore, the D4R agonist enhanced the AII-stimulated elevation of intracellular IP(3) and [Ca(2+)](i). Inhibition of PKC-epsilon translocation by the PKC-epsilon-specific inhibitory peptide attenuated AII-stimulated aldosterone secretion, CYP11B2 mRNA expression, and elevation of intracellular IP(3) and [Ca(2+)](i). We conclude that D4R augmented aldosterone synthesis/secretion induced by AII. The mechanisms responsible for this augmentation are mediated through enhancing PKC-epsilon phosphorylation and [Ca(2+)](i) elevation.

    American journal of physiology. Endocrinology and metabolism 2008;294;3;E622-9

  • Participation of p38 MAPK and a novel-type protein kinase C in the control of mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake.

    Szanda G, Koncz P, Rajki A and Spät A

    Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Semmelweis University and Laboratory of Neurobiochemistry and Molecular Physiology, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, PO Box 259, H-1444 Budapest, Hungary.

    Angiotensin II elicits cytosolic and mitochondrial Ca2+ signal in H295R adrenocortical cells. We found that Ca2+ uptake rate and peak values in small mitochondrial regions both depend on the colocalization of these mitochondrial regions with GFP-marked endoplasmic reticular (ER) vesicles. The dependence of the Ca2+ response on this colocalization is abolished by SB202190 and PD169316, inhibitors of p38 MAPK, as well as by transfection with siRNA against p38 MAPK mRNA. The same manoeuvres result in an increased ratio of global mitochondrial to global cytosolic Ca2+ response, indicating that inhibition of p38 MAPK is followed by enhanced mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake. alpha-Toxin and TNFalpha, agents which similarly to angiotensin II increase the phosphorylation of p38, failed to affect mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake, indicating that activation of p38 MAPK is necessary but not sufficient for the inhibition of Ca2+ uptake. Bisindolylmaleimide, an inhibitor of the conventional and novel-type protein kinase C isoforms also evokes enhanced mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake, whereas Gö6976 that inhibits the conventional isoforms only failed to exert any effect. These data show that angiotensin II attenuates Ca2+ uptake predominantly into mitochondria that do not colocalize with ER, by a mechanism involving p38 MAPK and a novel-type PKC.

    Cell calcium 2008;43;3;250-9

  • Role of phospholipase Cgamma-induced activation of protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) and PKCbetaI in epidermal growth factor-mediated protection of tight junctions from acetaldehyde in Caco-2 cell monolayers.

    Suzuki T, Seth A and Rao R

    Department of Physiology, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, Tennessee 38163, USA.

    Epidermal growth factor (EGF) protects the intestinal epithelial tight junctions from acetaldehyde-induced insult. The role of phospholipase Cgamma (PLCgamma) and protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms in the mechanism of EGF-mediated protection of tight junction from acetaldehyde was evaluated in Caco-2 cell monolayers. EGF-mediated prevention of acetaldehyde-induced decrease in transepithelial electrical resistance and an increase in inulin permeability, and subcellular redistribution of occludin and ZO-1 was attenuated by reduced expression of PLCgamma1 by short hairpin RNA. EGF induced a rapid activation of PLCgamma1 and PLC-dependent membrane translocation of PKCepsilon and PKCbetaI. Inhibition of PKC activity or selective interference of membrane translocation of PKCepsilon and PKCbetaI by RACK interference peptides attenuated EGF-mediated prevention of acetaldehyde-induced increase in inulin permeability and redistribution of occludin and ZO-1. BAPTA-AM and thapsigargin blocked EGF-induced membrane translocation of PKCbetaI and attenuated EGF-mediated prevention of acetaldehyde-induced disruption of tight junctions. EGF-induced translocation of PKCepsilon and PKCbetaI was associated with organization of F-actin near the perijunctional region. This study shows that PLCgamma-mediated activation of PKCepsilon and PKCbetaI and intracellular calcium is involved in EGF-mediated protection of tight junctions from acetaldehyde-induced insult.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: R01 AA012307, R01-AA12307; NIDDK NIH HHS: R01 DK055532, R01-DK55532

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2008;283;6;3574-83

  • Differential roles of the PKC novel isoforms, PKCdelta and PKCepsilon, in mouse and human platelets.

    Pears CJ, Thornber K, Auger JM, Hughes CE, Grygielska B, Protty MB, Pearce AC and Watson SP

    Department of Biochemistry, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom. catherine.pears@bioch.ox.ac.uk

    Background: Increasing evidence suggests that individual isoforms of protein kinase C (PKC) play distinct roles in regulating platelet activation.

    In this study, we focus on the role of two novel PKC isoforms, PKCdelta and PKCepsilon, in both mouse and human platelets. PKCdelta is robustly expressed in human platelets and undergoes transient tyrosine phosphorylation upon stimulation by thrombin or the collagen receptor, GPVI, which becomes sustained in the presence of the pan-PKC inhibitor, Ro 31-8220. In mouse platelets, however, PKCdelta undergoes sustained tyrosine phosphorylation upon activation. In contrast the related isoform, PKCepsilon, is expressed at high levels in mouse but not human platelets. There is a marked inhibition in aggregation and dense granule secretion to low concentrations of GPVI agonists in mouse platelets lacking PKCepsilon in contrast to a minor inhibition in response to G protein-coupled receptor agonists. This reduction is mediated by inhibition of tyrosine phosphorylation of the FcRgamma-chain and downstream proteins, an effect also observed in wild-type mouse platelets in the presence of a PKC inhibitor.

    Conclusions: These results demonstrate a reciprocal relationship in levels of the novel PKC isoforms delta and epsilon in human and mouse platelets and a selective role for PKCepsilon in signalling through GPVI.

    Funded by: British Heart Foundation; Wellcome Trust

    PloS one 2008;3;11;e3793

  • Phosphorylation of Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa by protein kinase C epsilon is important for its subcellular localisation.

    Sapountzi V, Logan IR, Nelson G, Cook S and Robson CN

    Surgical Oncology Laboratory, Northern Institute for Cancer Research, Paul O'Gorman Building, Framlington Place, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 4HH, UK.

    Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa is a nuclear acetyltransferase that both coactivates and corepresses transcription factors and has a definitive function in the DNA damage response. Here, we provide evidence that Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa is phosphorylated by protein kinase C epsilon. In vitro, protein kinase C epsilon phosphorylates Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa on at least two sites within the acetyltransferase domain. In whole cells, activation of protein kinase C increases the levels of phosphorylated Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa and the interaction of Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa with protein kinase C epsilon. A phosphomimetic mutant Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa has distinct subcellular localisation compared to the wild-type protein in whole cells. Taken together, these findings suggest that the protein kinase C epsilon phosphorylation sites on Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa are important for its subcellular localisation. Regulation of the subcellular localisation of Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa via phosphorylation provides a novel means of controlling Tat-interactive protein 60 kDa function.

    Funded by: Medical Research Council: G0500966

    The international journal of biochemistry & cell biology 2008;40;2;236-44

  • A protein kinase Cepsilon-anti-apoptotic kinase signaling complex protects human vascular endothelial cells against apoptosis through induction of Bcl-2.

    Steinberg R, Harari OA, Lidington EA, Boyle JJ, Nohadani M, Samarel AM, Ohba M, Haskard DO and Mason JC

    Bywaters Center for Vascular Inflammation and Histopathology Section, Imperial College London, Hammersmith Hospital, London, W12 ONN United Kingdom.

    Endothelial cell apoptosis is associated with vascular injury and predisposes to atherogenesis. Endothelial cells express anti-apoptotic genes including Bcl-2, Bcl-XL and survivin, which also contribute to angiogenesis and vascular remodeling. We report a central role for protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) in the regulation of Bcl-2 expression and cytoprotection of human vascular endothelium against apoptosis. Using myristoylated inhibitory peptides, a predominant role for PKCepsilon in vascular endothelial growth factor-mediated endothelial resistance to apoptosis was revealed. Immunoblotting of endothelial cells infected with an adenovirus expressing a constitutively active form of PKCepsilon (Adv-PKCepsilon-CA) or control Adv-beta-galactosidase demonstrated a 3-fold, PKCepsilon-dependent increase in Bcl-2 expression, with no significant change in Bcl-XL, Bad, Bak, or Bax. The induction of Bcl-2 inhibited apoptosis induced by serum starvation or etoposide, and PKCepsilon activation attenuated etoposide-induced caspase-3 cleavage. The functional role of Bcl-2 was confirmed with Bcl-2 antagonist HA-14-1. Inhibition of phosphoinositide 3-kinase attenuated vascular endothelial growth factor-induced protection against apoptosis, and this was rescued by overexpression of constitutively active PKCepsilon, suggesting PKCepsilon acts downstream of phosphoinositide 3-kinase. Co-immunoprecipitation studies demonstrated a physical interaction between PKCepsilon and Akt, which resulted in formation of a signaling complex, leading to optimal induction of Bcl-2. This study reveals a pivotal role for PKCepsilon in endothelial cell cytoprotection against apoptosis. We demonstrate that PKCepsilon forms a signaling complex and acts co-operatively with Akt to protect human vascular endothelial cells against apoptosis through induction of the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and inhibition of caspase-3 cleavage.

    Funded by: British Heart Foundation: FS/13/12/30037

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2007;282;44;32288-97

  • Protein kinase C-epsilon protects MCF-7 cells from TNF-mediated cell death by inhibiting Bax translocation.

    Lu D, Sivaprasad U, Huang J, Shankar E, Morrow S and Basu A

    Department of Molecular Biology & Immunology, University of North Texas Health Science Center, 3500 Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth, TX 76107, USA.

    We have previously shown that protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) acts as an antiapoptotic protein and protects breast cancer MCF-7 cells from tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF)-mediated apoptosis. In the present study, we have investigated the mechanism by which PKCepsilon inhibits TNF-induced cell death. Overexpression of wild-type PKCepsilon (WT-PKCepsilon) in MCF-7 cells decreased TNF-induced mitochondrial depolarization. Depletion of Bax by small interfering RNA (siRNA) attenuated TNF-induced cell death. Overexpression of PKCepsilon in MCF-7 cells decreased dimerization of Bax and its translocation to the mitochondria. Knockdown of PKCepsilon using siRNA induced Bax dimerization and mitochondrial translocation. PKCepsilon was coimmunoprecipitated with Bax in MCF-7 cells. These results suggest that PKCepsilon mediates its antiapoptotic effect partly by preventing activation and translocation of Bax to the mitochondria.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA71727

    Apoptosis : an international journal on programmed cell death 2007;12;10;1893-900

  • Phosphorylation of claudin-4 by PKCepsilon regulates tight junction barrier function in ovarian cancer cells.

    D'Souza T, Indig FE and Morin PJ

    Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Biology, National Institute on Aging, Baltimore, MD 21224, USA.

    Claudin proteins belong to a large family of transmembrane proteins essential to the formation and maintenance of tight junctions (TJs). In ovarian cancer, TJ protein claudin-4 is frequently overexpressed and may have roles in survival and invasion, but the molecular mechanisms underlying its regulation are poorly understood. In this report, we show that claudin-4 can be phosphorylated by protein kinase C (PKC) at Thr189 and Ser194 in ovarian cancer cells and overexpression of a claudin-4 mutant protein mimicking the phosphorylated state results in the disruption of the barrier function. Furthermore, upon phorbol ester-mediated PKC activation of OVCA433 cells, TJ strength is decreased and claudin-4 localization is altered. Analyses using PKC inhibitors and siRNA suggest that PKCepsilon, an isoform typically expressed in ovarian cancer cells, may be important in the TPA-mediated claudin-4 phosphorylation and weakening of the TJs. Furthermore, immunofluorescence studies showed that claudin-4 and PKCepsilon are co-localized at the TJs in these cells. The modulation of claudin-4 activity by PKCepsilon may not only provide a mechanism for disrupting TJ function in ovarian cancer, but may also be important in the regulation of TJ function in normal epithelial cells.

    Funded by: Intramural NIH HHS: Z01 AG000512-10

    Experimental cell research 2007;313;15;3364-75

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon may act as EGF-inducible scaffold protein for phospholipase Cgamma1.

    Valkova C, Maerz S, Imhof D and Liebmann C

    Institut für Biochemie und Biophysik, Biologisch-Pharmazeutische Fakultät, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Philosophenweg 12, D-07743 Jena, Germany.

    Phospholipase Cgamma1 (PLCgamma1) represents a major downstream signalling component of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor (EGFR) and is activated by tyrosine phosphorylation. Here we show for the first time that cellular knockdown of protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) leads to decreased activation of PLCgamma1 by EGF and that EGF induces tyrosine phosphorylation of PKCepsilon as well as association of PKCepsilon with both EGFR and PLCgamma1. Using several mutants, co-immunoprecipitation and phosphopeptide-based pull-down experiments we found that in dependency on c-Src and EGF-stimulation PKCepsilon may bind to the c-Src-specific phosphorylation site pY845-EGFR. Furthermore, we identified a single tyrosine residue, PKCepsilon-Y573, within a consensus binding sequence of the C-terminal SH2 domain of PLCgamma1 which is critical for both tyrosine phosphorylation of PKCepsilon and its association with PLCgamma1. Thus, in particular cells and independent of the kinase activity PKCepsilon may form a signalling module with EGFR and PLCgamma1. Thereby the tyrosine phosphorylation of PLCgamma1 via the EGFR may be facilitated. This is a novel function of PKCepsilon upstream of PLCgamma1 and a novel paradigm for the EGF-induced formation of multi-protein complexes.

    Cellular signalling 2007;19;9;1830-43

  • Timing and expression level of protein kinase C epsilon regulate the megakaryocytic differentiation of human CD34 cells.

    Gobbi G, Mirandola P, Sponzilli I, Micheloni C, Malinverno C, Cocco L and Vitale M

    Department of Anatomy, Pharmacology & Forensic Medicine, Human Anatomy Section, University of Parma, Ospedale Maggiore, Via Gramsci, 14, I-43100 Parma, Italy.

    Protein kinase C (PKC)-mediated intracellular signaling participates in several key steps of hematopoietic cell differentiation. The epsilon isoform of PKC has been associated with erythroid differentiation as well as with the early phases of megakaryocytic (MK) lineage commitment. Here, we worked on the hypothesis that PKCepsilon expression levels might be modulated during MK differentiation, with a specific role in the early as well as in the late phases of thrombopoiesis. We demonstrate that--at variance with the erythroid lineage development--PKCepsilon is completely downmodulated in TPO-induced CD34 cells from day 6 onward. The forced expression of PKCepsilon in the late phases of MK differentiation delays the phenotypic differentiation of progenitors likely via Bcl-xL upregulation. Moreover, tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), known as a negative regulator of early erythroid expansion, is not apoptogenic for thrombopoietin-induced CD34 cells, but rather accelerates their maturation. However, PKCepsilon levels negatively interfere also with the effects of TRAIL in MK differentiation. PKCepsilon can therefore be considered a signaling intermediate whose expression levels are finely tuned, with a virtually opposite kinetic, in erythroid versus megakaryocytic lineages, to adequately respond to the signaling requirements of the specific hematopoietic lineage.

    Stem cells (Dayton, Ohio) 2007;25;9;2322-9

  • Protein kinase C epsilon is overexpressed in primary human non-small cell lung cancers and functionally required for proliferation of non-small cell lung cancer cells in a p21/Cip1-dependent manner.

    Bae KM, Wang H, Jiang G, Chen MG, Lu L and Xiao L

    University of Florida Shands Cancer Center, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, Florida 32610-3633, USA.

    The protein kinase C (PKC) family of proteins plays important roles in growth regulation and is implicated in tumorigenesis. It has become clear that the role of PKC in tumorigenesis is cell context dependent and/or isoform specific. In this study, we showed for the first time by immunohistochemistry that overexpression of PKC epsilon was detected in the vast majority (>90%) of primary human non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) compared with normal lung epithelium. Inhibition of the PKC epsilon pathway using a kinase-inactive, dominant-negative PKC epsilon, PKC epsilon(KR), led to a significant inhibition of proliferation and anchorage-independent growth of human NSCLC cells in a p53-independent manner. This was accompanied by a specific induction of the cyclin-dependent kinase (cdk) inhibitor p21/Cip1 but not p27/Kip1. In response to serum stimulation, PKC epsilon(KR)-expressing cells showed a prolonged G(1)-S transition and delayed and reduced activation of cdk2 complexes, which was likely attributed to the increased binding of p21/Cip1 to cdk2. Furthermore, inhibition of PKC epsilon function either by expressing PKC epsilon(KR) or by small interfering RNA (siRNA)-mediated gene knockdown resulted in c-Myc down-regulation, which, in turn, regulated p21/Cip1 expression. Knockdown of PKC epsilon or c-Myc expression using siRNA led to induction of p21/Cip1 and attenuation of G(1)-S transition in NSCLC cells. Using p21(+/+) and p21(-/-) HCT116 isogenic cell lines, we further showed that growth inhibition by PKC epsilon(KR) required the function of p21/Cip1. Collectively, these results reveal an important role for PKC epsilon signaling in lung cancer and suggest that one potential mechanism by which PKC epsilon exerts its oncogenic activity is through deregulation of the cell cycle via a p21/Cip1-dependent mechanism.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA88815

    Cancer research 2007;67;13;6053-63

  • Fatty acid represses insulin receptor gene expression by impairing HMGA1 through protein kinase Cepsilon.

    Dey D, Bhattacharya A, Roy S and Bhattacharya S

    Molecular Endocrinology Laboratory, Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, 4, Raja S.C. Mullick Road, Kolkata 700032, India.

    It is known that free fatty acid (FFA) contributes to the development of insulin resistance and type2 diabetes. However, the underlying mechanism in FFA-induced insulin resistance is still unclear. In the present investigation we have demonstrated that palmitate significantly (p <0.001) inhibited insulin-stimulated phosphorylation of PDK1, the key insulin signaling molecule. Consequently, PDK1 phosphorylation of plasma membrane bound PKCepsilon was also inhibited. Surprisingly, phosphorylation of cytosolic PKCepsilon was greatly stimulated by palmitate; this was then translocated to the nuclear region and associated with the inhibition of insulin receptor (IR) gene transcription. A PKCepsilon translocation inhibitor peptide, epsilonV1, suppressed this inhibitory effect of palmitate, suggesting requirement of phospho-PKCepsilon migration to implement palmitate effect. Experimental evidences indicate that phospho-PKCepsilon adversely affected HMGA1. Since HMGA1 regulates IR promoter activity, expression of IR gene was impaired causing reduction of IR on cell surface and that compromises with insulin sensitivity.

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2007;357;2;474-9

  • Comparison of the PKCalpha and the PKCepsilon C1b domains: identification of residues critical for PKCepsilon-mediated neurite induction.

    Ling M, Sunesson L and Larsson C

    Lund University, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Malmö University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden.

    We showed earlier that over-expression of protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon induces neurite outgrowth. The effect is mediated by a region (PKCepsilonPSC1V3) encompassing the pseudosubstrate, the two C1 domains and part of the V3 region, and is independent of the catalytic activity of the enzyme. In this region, residues immediately N-terminal of the C1b domain are crucial for neurite outgrowth. However, in this study we show that the PKCepsilon C1b domain itself is necessary for neurite induction, since a mutant in which the PKCepsilon C1b domain has been replaced with the C1b domain from PKCalpha, PKCepsilonPSC1a(alphaC1b)V3 lacks neurite-inducing capacity. The molecular basis for the importance of the PKCepsilon C1b domain was investigated by mutation studies of the PKCalpha C1b domain. Point mutations were done in the PKCalpha C1b domain of the PKCepsilonPSC1a(alphaC1b)V3 construct, in which the PKCalpha residues were mutated into the corresponding residues in PKCepsilon. This highlighted residues in the C-terminal part of the primary sequence of the C1b domain, located in the base of the C1b domain, as important for neurite outgrowth. The mutations S48P, D32K and L49N all influenced neurite induction positively. Furthermore, the mutation of L49N alone was sufficient to make PKCepsilonPSC1a(alphaC1b)V3 neuritogenic in phorbol ester-stimulated cells, and mutation of this residue in full-length PKCepsilon into the corresponding residue in PKCalpha, N291L reduced the neurite-inducing effect of PKCepsilon. In conclusion, we have identified residues in the PKCepsilon C1b domain, in particular Asn49, that are essential for neurite outgrowth.

    Journal of molecular biology 2007;368;4;951-65

  • Angiotensin II activates p44/42 MAP kinase partly through PKCepsilon in H295R cells.

    Lehoux JG and Lefebvre A

    Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada J1H 5N4. jean-guy.lehoux@usherbrooke.ca

    Using pharmaceutical and overexpression approaches we have previously reported that in H295R cells, (a) angiotensin II (AII) activates PKCepsilon, PKCalpha and p44/42 MAPK pathway, (b) PKCepsilon, PKCalpha and p44/42 MAPK overexpression inhibits AII-induced CYP11B2 gene transcription and (c) overexpression of PKCepsilon inhibits CYP11B2 gene transcription through p44/42 MAPK activation [LeHoux, J.G., Dupuis, G., Lefebvre, A., 2001. Control of CYP11B2 gene expression through differential regulation of its promoter by atypical and conventional protein kinase C isoforms. J. Biol. Chem. 276 (11), 8021-8028; LeHoux, J.G., Lefebvre, A., 2006. Novel protein kinase C-epsilon inhibits human CYP11B2 gene expression through ERK1/2 signalling pathway and JunB. J. Mol. Endocrinol. 36 (1), 51-64]. The aim of the present work was to evaluate the physiological role of endogenous PKCepsilon and PKCalpha isoforms in the activation of p44/42 MAPK by AII. A 50% reduction of PKCepsilon protein by siRNA-PKCepsilon resulted in 35% inhibition of AII-induced p44/42 MAPK activation. Knockdown of PKCepsilon stimulated AII-induced CYP11B2 transcription indicating that the PKCepsilon is not involved in the activation of CYP11B2 gene expression by AII. Furthermore, knockdown of PKCalpha enhanced AII-stimulated CYP11B2 transcription without altering p44/42 MAPK indicating that inhibition of AII-stimulated CYP11B2 gene by PKCalpha does not involve the p44/42 MAPK signalling pathway. These results thus establish that physiologically, PKCepsilon and PKCalpha act through different signalling pathways to inhibit AII-stimulated CYP11B2 gene expression.

    Molecular and cellular endocrinology 2007;265-266;121-5

  • aPKC-mediated phosphorylation regulates asymmetric membrane localization of the cell fate determinant Numb.

    Smith CA, Lau KM, Rahmani Z, Dho SE, Brothers G, She YM, Berry DM, Bonneil E, Thibault P, Schweisguth F, Le Borgne R and McGlade CJ

    Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

    In Drosophila, the partition defective (Par) complex containing Par3, Par6 and atypical protein kinase C (aPKC) directs the polarized distribution and unequal segregation of the cell fate determinant Numb during asymmetric cell divisions. Unequal segregation of mammalian Numb has also been observed, but the factors involved are unknown. Here, we identify in vivo phosphorylation sites of mammalian Numb and show that both mammalian and Drosophila Numb interact with, and are substrates for aPKC in vitro. A form of mammalian Numb lacking two protein kinase C (PKC) phosphorylation sites (Numb2A) accumulates at the cell membrane and is refractory to PKC activation. In epithelial cells, mammalian Numb localizes to the basolateral membrane and is excluded from the apical domain, which accumulates aPKC. In contrast, Numb2A is distributed uniformly around the cell cortex. Mutational analysis of conserved aPKC phosphorylation sites in Drosophila Numb suggests that phosphorylation contributes to asymmetric localization of Numb, opposite to aPKC in dividing sensory organ precursor cells. These results suggest a model in which phosphorylation of Numb by aPKC regulates its polarized distribution in epithelial cells as well as during asymmetric cell divisions.

    The EMBO journal 2007;26;2;468-80

  • Protein kinase C-dependent enhancement of activity of rat brain NCKX2 heterologously expressed in HEK293 cells.

    Lee JY, Visser F, Lee JS, Lee KH, Soh JW, Ho WK, Lytton J and Lee SH

    National Research Laboratory for Cell Physiology, Department of Physiology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 28 Yongon-Dong, Chongno-Ku, Seoul 110-799, South Korea.

    Different members of the Na+/Ca2++K+ exchanger (NCKX) family are present in distinct brain regions, suggesting that they may have cell-specific functions. Many neuronal channels and transporters are regulated via phosphorylation. Regulation of the rat brain NCKXs by protein kinases, however, has not been described. Here, we report an increase in NCKX2 activity in response to protein kinase C (PKC) activation. Outward current of NCKX2 heterologously expressed in HEK293 cells was enhanced by beta-phorbol dibutyrate (PDBu), whereas PDBu had little effect on activity of NCKX3 or NCKX4. The PDBu-induced enhancement (PIE) of NCKX2 activity was abolished by PKC inhibitors and significantly reduced when the dominant negative mutant of PKCepsilon (K437R) was overexpressed. Moreover, PDBu accelerated the decay rate of the Ca2+ transient at the calyx of Held, where NCKX is the major Ca2+-clearance mechanism. Intracellular perfusion with alkaline phosphatase completely inhibited PIE. Consistently, beta-phorbol myristate acetate (PMA), but not 4alpha-PMA, induced a 3-fold stimulation of 32P incorporation into NCKX2 expressed in HEK293 cells. To investigate the sites involved, PIE of wild-type NCKX2 was compared with mutant NCKX2 in which the three putative PKC consensus sites were replaced with alanine, either individually or in combination. Double-site mutation involving Thr-476 (T166A/T476A and T476A/S504A) disrupted PIE, whereas single mutation of Thr-166, Thr-476, or Ser-504 or the double mutant T166A/S504A failed to completely prevent PIE. These findings suggest that PKC-mediated activation of NCKX2 is sensitive to mutation of multiple PKC consensus sites via a mechanism that may involve several phosphorylation events.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2006;281;51;39205-16

  • Cdc42 is involved in PKCepsilon- and delta-induced neurite outgrowth and stress fibre dismantling.

    Trollér U and Larsson C

    Lund University, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Molecular Medicine, Entrance 78, 3rd floor, Malmö University Hospital, SE-205 02 Malmö, Sweden.

    We have shown that protein kinase C (PKC)epsilon, independently of the catalytic domain, induces outgrowth of cellular processes via its regulatory domain in both neural cells and fibroblasts. This was accompanied by stress fibre loss. Here, we have examined the role of the small GTPases, Rac1, and Cdc42, in these PKC-mediated morphological and cytoskeletal changes. Both constitutively active and dominant negative Rac1 and Cdc42 attenuated the PKC-mediated outgrowth of processes. The suppression was larger for Cdc42 than for Rac1. The PKC-mediated dismantling of the stress fibres in both HiB5 and fibroblasts was inhibited by the expression of the Cdc42 mutants whereas they had smaller effects on the stress fibre dismantling induced by the ROCK inhibitor, Y-27632, indicating a more crucial role for Cdc42 in the PKC-mediated pathway. We conclude that Cdc42 is an important downstream factor in the pathway through which PKC mediates morphological and cytoskeletal effects.

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2006;349;1;91-8

  • Targeted disruption of protein kinase C epsilon reduces cell invasion and motility through inactivation of RhoA and RhoC GTPases in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

    Pan Q, Bao LW, Teknos TN and Merajver SD

    Division of Hematology and Oncology, Department of Internal Medicine, Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA. qpan@med.umich.edu

    Over 70% of patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) present with locoregionally advanced stage III and IV disease. In spite of aggressive therapy, locoregional disease recurs in 60% and metastatic disease develops in 15% to 25% of patients causing a major decline in quality and length of life. Therefore, there is a need to identify and understand genes that are responsible for inducing an aggressive HNSCC phenotype. Evidence has shown that protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon is a transforming oncogene and may play a role in HNSCC progression. In this study, we determine the downstream signaling pathway mediated by PKC epsilon to promote an aggressive HNSCC phenotype. RNA interference knockdown of PKC epsilon in UMSCC11A and UMSCC36, two highly invasive and motile HNSCC cell lines with elevated endogenous PKC epsilon levels, resulted in cells that were significantly less invasive and motile than the small interfering RNA-scrambled control transfectants; 51 +/- 5% (P < 0.006) and 49 +/- 3% (P < 0.010) inhibition in invasion and 69 +/- 1% (P < 0.0005) and 66 +/- 3% (P < 0.0001) inhibition in motility, respectively. PKC epsilon-deficient UMSCC11A clones had reduced levels of active and serine-phosphorylated RhoA and RhoC. Moreover, constitutive active RhoA completely rescued the invasion and motility defect, whereas constitutive active RhoC completely rescued the invasion and partially rescued the motility defect of PKC epsilon-deficient UMSCC11A clones. These results indicate that RhoA and RhoC are downstream of PKC epsilon and critical for PKC epsilon-mediated cell invasion and motility. Our study shows, for the first time, that PKC epsilon is involved in a coordinated regulation of RhoA and RhoC activation, possibly through direct post-translational phosphorylation.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA77612, P50 CA097248, P50CA97248, R01 CA077612

    Cancer research 2006;66;19;9379-84

  • Protease-activated receptor 2 sensitizes TRPV1 by protein kinase Cepsilon- and A-dependent mechanisms in rats and mice.

    Amadesi S, Cottrell GS, Divino L, Chapman K, Grady EF, Bautista F, Karanjia R, Barajas-Lopez C, Vanner S, Vergnolle N and Bunnett NW

    Department of Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, Room C317, 521 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94143-0660, USA.

    Proteases that are released during inflammation and injury cleave protease-activated receptor 2 (PAR2) on primary afferent neurons to cause neurogenic inflammation and hyperalgesia. PAR2-induced thermal hyperalgesia depends on sensitization of transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor 1 (TRPV1), which is gated by capsaicin, protons and noxious heat. However, the signalling mechanisms by which PAR2 sensitizes TRPV1 are not fully characterized. Using immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy, we observed that PAR2 was colocalized with protein kinase (PK) Cepsilon and PKA in a subset of dorsal root ganglia neurons in rats, and that PAR2 agonists promoted translocation of PKCepsilon and PKA catalytic subunits from the cytosol to the plasma membrane of cultured neurons and HEK 293 cells. Subcellular fractionation and Western blotting confirmed this redistribution of kinases, which is indicative of activation. Although PAR2 couples to phospholipase Cbeta, leading to stimulation of PKC, we also observed that PAR2 agonists increased cAMP generation in neurons and HEK 293 cells, which would activate PKA. PAR2 agonists enhanced capsaicin-stimulated increases in [Ca2+]i and whole-cell currents in HEK 293 cells, indicating TRPV1 sensitization. The combined intraplantar injection of non-algesic doses of PAR2 agonist and capsaicin decreased the latency of paw withdrawal to radiant heat in mice, indicative of thermal hyperalgesia. Antagonists of PKCepsilon and PKA prevented sensitization of TRPV1 Ca2+ signals and currents in HEK 293 cells, and suppressed thermal hyperalgesia in mice. Thus, PAR2 activates PKCepsilon and PKA in sensory neurons, and thereby sensitizes TRPV1 to cause thermal hyperalgesia. These mechanisms may underlie inflammatory pain, where multiple proteases are generated and released.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK39957, DK43207, DK57480

    The Journal of physiology 2006;575;Pt 2;555-71

  • Possible role of duration of PKC-induced ERK activation in the effects of agonists and phorbol esters on DNA synthesis in Panc-1 cells.

    Rácz GZ, Szucs A, Szlávik V, Vág J, Burghardt B, Elliott AC and Varga G

    Molecular Oral Biology Research Group, Department of Oral Biology, Semmelweis University and Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary.

    Protein kinase C (PKC) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) have been implicated in the effects of regulatory peptides on proliferation. We studied how ERK was activated by PKC following regulatory peptide or phorbol ester stimulation and we also investigated the effect of ERK activation on proliferation in Panc-1 cells. Panc-1 cells transfected with CCK1 receptors were treated with cholecystokinin (CCK), neurotensin (NT), or phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA). DNA synthesis was studied by measuring tritiated thymidine incorporation. PKC isoforms were selectively inhibited with Gö6983 and 200 nM Ro-32-0432, their translocation was detected by confocal microscopy and by subcellular fractionation followed by immunoblotting. ERK cascade activation was detected with phosphoERK immunoblotting and inhibited with 20 microM PD98059. PMA and CCK inhibited, NT stimulated DNA synthesis. These effects were inhibited by Ro-32-0432 but not by Gö6983 suggesting the involvement of PKCepsilon in proliferation control. Confocal microscopy and subcellular fractionation demonstrated that PMA, CCK, and NT caused cytosol to membrane translocation of PKCepsilon and ERK activation that was inhibited by Ro-32-0432 but not by Gö6983. ERK activation was prolonged following PMA and CCK, but transient after NT treatment. PMA, CCK, and NT all activated cyclinD1, while p21CIP1 expression was increased by only PMA and CCK, but not by NT; each of these effects is inhibited by PD98059. In conclusion, our results provide evidence for PKCepsilon-mediated differential ERK activation and growth regulation in Panc-1C cells. Identification of the mechanisms by which these key signaling pathways are modulated could provide a basis for the development of novel therapeutic interventions to treat pancreatic cancer.

    Funded by: Wellcome Trust

    Journal of cellular biochemistry 2006;98;6;1667-80

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon activates protein kinase B/Akt via DNA-PK to protect against tumor necrosis factor-alpha-induced cell death.

    Lu D, Huang J and Basu A

    Department of Molecular Biology & Immunology, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, Texas 76107, USA.

    We have previously shown that protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) protects breast cancer cells from tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF)-induced cell death. In the present study, we have investigated if the antiapoptotic function of PKCepsilon is mediated via Akt and the mechanism by which PKCepsilon regulates Akt activity. TNF caused a transient increase in Akt phosphorylation at Ser473 in MCF-7 cells. Overexpression of PKCepsilon in MCF-7 cells increased TNF-induced Akt phosphorylation at Ser473 resulting in its activation. Knockdown of PKCepsilon by small interfering RNA (siRNA) decreased TNF-induced Akt phosphorylation/activation and increased cell death. Introduction of constitutively active Akt protected breast cancer MCF-7 cells from TNF-mediated cell death and partially restored cell survival in PKCepsilon-depleted cells. Depletion of Akt in MCF-7 cells abolished the antiapoptotic effect of PKCepsilon on TNF-mediated cell death. Akt was constitutively associated with PKCepsilon and DNA-dependent protein kinase (DNA-PK), and this association was increased by TNF treatment. Overexpression of PKCepsilon enhanced the interaction between Akt and DNA-PK. Knockdown of DNA-PK by siRNA inhibited TNF-induced Akt phosphorylation and the antiapoptotic effect of Akt and PKCepsilon. These results suggest that PKCepsilon activates Akt via DNA-PK to mediate its antiapoptotic function. Furthermore, we report for the first time that DNA-PK can regulate receptor-initiated apoptosis via Akt.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA71727

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2006;281;32;22799-807

  • FGF-2 protects small cell lung cancer cells from apoptosis through a complex involving PKCepsilon, B-Raf and S6K2.

    Pardo OE, Wellbrock C, Khanzada UK, Aubert M, Arozarena I, Davidson S, Bowen F, Parker PJ, Filonenko VV, Gout IT, Sebire N, Marais R, Downward J and Seckl MJ

    Lung Cancer Biology Group, Cancer Research UK, Imperial College London, Hammersmith Hospitals Campus, Du Cane Road, London, UK.

    Patients with small cell lung cancer (SCLC) die because of chemoresistance. Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) increases the expression of antiapoptotic proteins, XIAP and Bcl-X(L), and triggers chemoresistance in SCLC cells. Here we show that these effects are mediated through the formation of a specific multiprotein complex comprising B-Raf, PKCepsilon and S6K2. S6K1, Raf-1 and other PKC isoforms do not form similar complexes. RNAi-mediated downregulation of B-Raf, PKCepsilon or S6K2 abolishes FGF-2-mediated survival. In contrast, overexpression of PKCepsilon increases XIAP and Bcl-X(L) levels and chemoresistance in SCLC cells. In a tetracycline-inducible system, increased S6K2 kinase activity triggers upregulation of XIAP, Bcl-X(L) and prosurvival effects. However, increased S6K1 kinase activity has no such effect. Thus, S6K2 but not S6K1 mediates prosurvival/chemoresistance signalling.

    The EMBO journal 2006;25;13;3078-88

  • PKCepsilon increases endothelin converting enzyme activity and reduces amyloid plaque pathology in transgenic mice.

    Choi DS, Wang D, Yu GQ, Zhu G, Kharazia VN, Paredes JP, Chang WS, Deitchman JK, Mucke L and Messing RO

    Ernest Gallo Clinic and Research Center, Emeryville, CA 94608, USA.

    Deposition of plaques containing amyloid beta (Abeta) peptides is a neuropathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here we demonstrate that neuronal overexpression of the epsilon isozyme of PKC decreases Abeta levels, plaque burden, and plaque-associated neuritic dystrophy and reactive astrocytosis in transgenic mice expressing familial AD-mutant forms of the human amyloid precursor protein (APP). Compared with APP singly transgenic mice, APP/PKCepsilon doubly transgenic mice had decreased Abeta levels but showed no evidence for altered cleavage of APP. Instead, PKCepsilon overexpression selectively increased the activity of endothelin-converting enzyme, which degrades Abeta. The activities of other Abeta-degrading enzymes, insulin degrading enzyme and neprilysin, were unchanged. These results indicate that increased neuronal PKCepsilon activity can promote Abeta clearance and reduce AD neuropathology through increased endothelin-converting enzyme activity.

    Funded by: NIA NIH HHS: AG022074, AG05834, AG11385, F32 AG005834, P01 AG022074, R01 AG011385, R37 AG011385; NIAAA NIH HHS: AA013588, R01 AA013588, R37 AA013588; NINDS NIH HHS: NS41787, R01 NS041787

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2006;103;21;8215-20

  • Novel protein kinase C-epsilon inhibits human CYP11B2 gene expression through ERK1/2 signalling pathway and JunB.

    LeHoux JG and Lefebvre A

    Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, J1H 5N4. jean-guy.lehoux@usherbrooke.ca

    We previously reported that H295R cells co-express three diacylglycerol (DAG)-dependent protein kinase Cs (PKCs), namely conventional (c) PKCalpha and novel (n) PKCepsilon and PKCtheta. The aim of the present work was to evaluate the implication of DAG-dependent PKCs in the activation of p44/42 MAP kinase (MAPK) by angiotensin II (Ang II) and to define the role of this pathway towards CYP11B2 regulation in H295R cells. The PKC inhibitor bisindolylmaleimide 1 (Bis) inhibited Ang II-induced p44/42 MAPK phosphorylation whereas the cPKC inhibitor Gö6976 failed to do so, thus ruling out the participation of PKCalpha. Ang II activated nPKCepsilon and did not affect nPKCtheta, pinpointing PKCepsilon as the mediator of Ang II in p44/42 MAPK activation. Overexpression of wild-type ERK1 and ERK2 significantly reduced basal as well as Ang II-stimulated human -2023CYP11B2-CAT activity; conversely, the two dominant negative mutants increased them. Overexpression of constitutively active (ca) PKCsuppressed Ang II-induced -2023CYP11B2-CAT activity. Infection of H295R cells with adenoviruses (Adv) expressing caPKCepsilon activated endogenous MEK1/2 and p44/42 MAPK. Adv-caPKCepsilon inhibited Ang II-stimulated aldosterone synthase mRNA levels and this action was reversed by the MEK1 inhibitor, PD98059. Also, Ang II increased JunB protein levels and this effect was inhibited by PD98059 and Bis. Adv-caPKCepsilon enhanced JunB protein levels and PD98059 attenuated the increase. JunB overexpression abolished the Ang II-induced promoter activity within -138 bp of the 5'-flanking region of CYP11B2. Collectively, these results demonstrate that PKCepsilon inhibits CYP11B2 transcription through the p44/42 MAPK pathway and JunB in H295R cells.

    Journal of molecular endocrinology 2006;36;1;51-64

  • A role for proteinase-activated receptor 2 and PKC-epsilon in thrombin-mediated induction of decay-accelerating factor on human endothelial cells.

    Lidington EA, Steinberg R, Kinderlerer AR, Landis RC, Ohba M, Samarel A, Haskard DO and Mason JC

    Cardiovascular Medicine Unit, Imperial College, Hammersmith Hospital, DuCane Road, London W12 ONN, UK.

    Thrombin, an important mediator of thrombosis and inflammation, may also enhance vascular cytoprotection. Thus thrombin induces expression of the complement-inhibitory protein decay-accelerating factor (DAF) in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs), thus increasing protection against complement-mediated injury. Using PKC isozyme-specific peptide antagonists and adenoviral constructs, we have shown in the present study that PKC-epsilon is the primary isozyme involved in DAF induction by thrombin. Experiments with proteinase-activated receptor-1 (PAR1) and PAR2 activating peptides (APs) showed that DAF expression induced by PAR1-AP was PKC-alpha-dependent; in contrast, PAR2-AP induction of DAF required activation of PKC-epsilon. PAR1-AP and PAR2-AP in combination exerted an additive effect on DAF protein expression, which was equivalent to that observed with thrombin alone. These data implied a specific role for PAR2 in DAF induction, which was supported by the observation that upregulation of endothelial cell (EC) PAR2-enhanced DAF induction by thrombin. ERK1/2, p38, and JNK MAPK were also involved in thrombin-induced DAF upregulation, with evidence of interdependence between ERK1/2 and JNK. A role for transactivation of PAR2 by PAR1 was suggested by partial inhibition of thrombin-induced DAF expression by the PAR1 signaling antagonists BMS-200261 and SCH79797, whereas inhibition of thrombin-induced cleavage of PAR1 by specific MAbs or hirudin completely abrogated the response. Together, these data imply that the predominant pathway for thrombin-induced DAF expression involves transactivation of PAR2 by PAR1 and signaling via PKC-epsilon/MAPK. This may represent an important, novel pathway for endothelial cytoprotection during inflammation and angiogenesis and suggests that PAR2 may play a central role in some thrombin-induced responses.

    American journal of physiology. Cell physiology 2005;289;6;C1437-47

  • Evidence that insulin-like growth factor-1 requires protein kinase C-epsilon, PI3-kinase and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways to protect human vascular smooth muscle cells from apoptosis.

    Allen TR, Krueger KD, Hunter WJ and Agrawal DK

    Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, Nebraska 68178, USA.

    Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-1 has been implicated in the development of occlusive vascular lesions. Although its role in vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) growth and migration are fairly well characterized, anti-apoptotic signals of IGF-1 in human VSMC remain largely unknown. In this study, we examined IGF-1 signals that protect human and rat VSMC from staurosporine (STAU)- and c-myc- induced apoptosis, respectively. Treatment with STAU resulted in apoptotic DNA fragmentation, phosphatidylserine externalization and cell shrinkage, but only occasional VSMC 'blebbing'. STAU-induced death and IGF-1-mediated survival were concentration dependent, while time-lapse video microscopy showed that IGF-1 inhibited c-myc-induced apoptosis by 90%. Pretreatment with mitogen-activated protein kinase/extracellular signal regulated kinase kinase (MEK) inhibitors UO126 and PD098059, or with the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-K) inhibitor wortmannin, reversed IGF-1-mediated human VSMC survival by 25-27% and 66%, respectively. Translocation studies showed that IGF-1 activated protein kinase C (PKC)-epsilon, but not PKC-alpha or PKC-delta, even in the presence of STAU, while pharmacological PKC inhibition (Ro-318220 or Go6976) implicated PKC-zeta or a novel PKC isozyme in IGF-1-mediated survival. Transient expression of activated PKC-epsilon but not activated PKC-zeta decreased myc-induced apoptosis in rat VSMC. In human VSMC, antisense oligodeoxynucleotides to PKC-epsilon partially reversed IGF-1-induced survival. In addition, IGF-1 elicited a mild but sustained activation of extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK)1/2 in human VSMC that was abolished after 1 h in the presence of STAU. PKC downregulation reversed both IGF-1- and PMA-induced ERK activity, but platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-induced activity was unchanged. These results indicate for the first time that IGF-1 can protect human VSMC via multiple signals, including PKC-epsilon, PI3-K and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: R01HL070885, R01HL073349

    Immunology and cell biology 2005;83;6;651-67

  • Protein kinase C phosphorylation of the metabotropic glutamate receptor mGluR5 on Serine 839 regulates Ca2+ oscillations.

    Kim CH, Braud S, Isaac JT and Roche KW

    NINDS, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA.

    The activation of Group 1 metabotropic glutamate receptors, mGluR5 and mGluR1alpha, triggers intracellular calcium release; however, mGluR5 activation is unique in that it elicits Ca2+ oscillations. A short region of the mGluR5 C terminus is the critical determinant and differs from the analogous region of mGluR1alpha by a single amino acid residue, Thr-840, which is an aspartic acid (Asp-854) in mGluR1alpha. Previous studies show that mGluR5-elicited Ca2+ oscillations require protein kinase C (PKC)-dependent phosphorylation and identify Thr-840 as the phosphorylation site. However, direct phosphorylation of mGluR5 has not been studied in detail. We have used biochemical analyses to directly investigate the phosphorylation of the mGluR5 C terminus. We showed that Ser-839 on mGluR5 is directly phosphorylated by PKC, whereas Thr-840 plays a permissive role. Although Ser-839 is conserved in mGluR1alpha (Ser-853), it is not phosphorylated, as the adjacent residue (Asp-854) is not permissive; however, mutagenesis of Asp-854 to a permissive alanine residue allows phosphorylation of Ser-853 on mGluR1alpha. We investigated the physiological consequences of mGluR5 Ser-839 phosphorylation using Ca2+ imaging. Mutations that eliminate Ser-839 phosphorylation prevent the characteristic mGluR5-dependent Ca2+ oscillations. However, mutation of Thr-840 to alanine, which prevents potential Thr-840 phosphorylation but is still permissive for Ser-839 phosphorylation, has no effect on Ca2+ oscillations. Thus, we showed that it is phosphorylation of Ser-839, not Thr-840, that is absolutely required for the unique Ca2+ oscillations produced by mGluR5 activation. The Thr-840 residue is important only in that it is permissive for the PKC-dependent phosphorylation of Ser-839.

    Funded by: Wellcome Trust

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;27;25409-15

  • Protein kinase C epsilon mediates angiotensin II-induced activation of beta1-integrins in cardiac fibroblasts.

    Stawowy P, Margeta C, Blaschke F, Lindschau C, Spencer-Hänsch C, Leitges M, Biagini G, Fleck E and Graf K

    Department of Medicine-Cardiology, Deutsches Herzzentrum Berlin, Augustenburger Platz 1, D-13353 Berlin, Germany.

    Objective: Angiotensin II (AII) promotes cardiac fibrosis by increased extracellular matrix production and enhanced interaction of matrix proteins with their cellular receptors, including integrins. AII and other growth factors augment beta(1)-integrin-dependent adhesion and spreading by "inside-out signaling" without affecting the total number of integrin receptors. "Inside-out signaling" involves specific signaling pathways, including protein kinase C (PKC), leading to activation of beta1-integrins. In the present study we investigated the mechanisms involved in AII-increased adhesion of adult rat cardiac fibroblasts (CFBs), obtained from Sprague-Dawley rats, to collagen I mediated by beta1-integrin.

    Treatment of CFBs with AII induced a concentration-dependent increase in adhesion to collagen I (2.2-fold, p<0.01) within 3-6 h of treatment. This effect was mediated by beta1-integrin via the angiotensin AT1 receptor and was significantly reduced by protein kinase C inhibition. AII significantly induced phosphorylation of PKC epsilon (PKCepsilon), which is involved in beta1-integrin-dependent adhesion and motility, and phosphorylation of the cytoplasmatic tail of beta1-integrin at threonine 788/789, required for adhesion. Phosphorylation of beta1-integrin and an increase in adhesion was also induced by l-alpha-phosphatidylinositol-3,4,5-triphosphate (l-alpha-PIP3), an activator of endogenous PKCepsilon. AII failed to increase adhesion in myofibroblasts obtained from PKCepsilon (-/-) mice, but not in cells obtained from control mice. Co-immunoprecipitation and double immunofluorescence demonstrated that AII induced a close association of PKCepsilon with beta1-integrin in CFBs.

    Conclusion: The present study demonstrates that AII increased beta1-integrin-dependent adhesion to collagen I in cardiac fibroblasts by inside-out signaling via PKCepsilon and phosphorylation of the cytoplasmatic tail of the beta1-integrin.

    Cardiovascular research 2005;67;1;50-9

  • Insights into regulation of human Schwann cell proliferation by Erk1/2 via a MEK-independent and p56Lck-dependent pathway from leprosy bacilli.

    Tapinos N and Rambukkana A

    Laboratory of Bacterial Pathogenesis and Immunology, The Rockefeller University, Bronk Building Room 501, 1230 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021, USA.

    Activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk) 1/2, which plays a critical role in diverse cellular processes, including cell proliferation, is known to be mediated by the canonical Raf-mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK) kinase cascade. Alternative MEK-independent signaling pathways for Erk1/2 activation in mammalian cells are not known. During our studies of human primary Schwann cell response to long-term infection of Mycobacterium leprae, the causative organism of leprosy, we identified that intracellular M. leprae activated Erk1/2 directly by lymphoid cell kinase (p56Lck), a Src family member, by means of a PKCepsilon-dependent and MEK-independent signaling pathway. Activation of this signaling induced nuclear accumulation of cyclin D1, G1/S-phase progression, and continuous proliferation, but without transformation. Thus, our data reveal a previously unknown signaling mechanism of glial cell proliferation, which might play a role in dedifferentiation as well as nerve regeneration and degeneration. Our findings may also provide a potential mechanism by which an obligate intracellular bacterial pathogen like M. leprae subverts nervous system signaling to propagate its cellular niche for colonization and long-term bacterial survival.

    Funded by: NINDS NIH HHS: R01 NS045187, R01 NS045187-01, R01 NS045187-02, R01 NS045187-03, R01 NS45187

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2005;102;26;9188-93

  • A novel protein kinase C (PKCepsilon) is required for fMet-Leu-Phe-induced activation of NF-kappaB in human peripheral blood monocytes.

    Chen LY, Doerner A, Lehmann PF, Huang S, Zhong G and Pan ZK

    Department of Medicine, and Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, Medical College of Ohio, 3055 Arlington Avenue, Toledo, OH 43614, USA.

    We have reported that the chemoattractant, fMet-Leu-Phe (fMLP), induces the activation of NF-kappaB in human peripheral blood monocytes and that this requires the activity of small GTPase, RhoA (Huang, S., Chen, L.-Y., Zuraw, B. L., Ye, R. D., and Pan, Z. K. (2001) J. Biol. Chem. 276, 40977-40981). Here we showed that the novel protein kinase C isozyme, PKCepsilon, associates functionally with RhoA in fMLP-stimulated monocytes and that PKCepsilon acted as a signaling component downstream of the GTPase RhoA during fMLP-induced activation of NF-kappaB. Stimulation of monocytes with fMLP resulted in activation of both PKCepsilon and NF-kappaB. This latter activation was largely blocked by specific inhibitors of PKCepsilon by transient expression of a dominant-negative form of PKCepsilon and by PKCepsilon-specific short interfering RNA. These findings demonstrate, for the first time, that fMLP-induced activation of NF-kappaB utilizes a signaling pathway, which requires activity of PKCepsilon, and that PKCepsilon acts as a signaling component downstream of RhoA in cytokine gene transcription stimulated by a chemoattractant. The specificity of this response suggests an important role for the Rho GTPase-PKCepsilon-NF-kappaB pathway in host defense and represents a novel and potentially important mechanism through which fMLP not only attracts leukocytes but may also contribute directly to inflammation.

    Funded by: NCRR NIH HHS: M01 RR 00833; NIAID NIH HHS: AI 43524, AI043524-11, R01 AI043524, R01 AI043524-11, T32 AI 07469

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;23;22497-501

  • Endogenous calcitonin gene-related peptide protects human alveolar epithelial cells through protein kinase Cepsilon and heat shock protein.

    Wang W, Jia L, Wang T, Sun W, Wu S and Wang X

    Institute of Vascular Medicine, Peking University Third Hospital, Beijing 100083, China.

    The intracellular mechanisms of ischemic preconditioning (PC) in preventing lung dysfunction following transplantation, shock, and trauma remain poorly understood. Previously, we have shown that alveolar epithelial cells secrete calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) under inflammatory stress. Using a hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R) and PC model, we found that CGRP was also secreted from human type II alveolar epithelial cells (A549) after PC. The locally released CGRP interacted with its receptor on the membrane of A549 cells and elicited downstream signals mediating the PC effect, because hCGRP(8-37), a specific CGRP receptor antagonist, attenuated the protective effect of PC. Pre-inhibition of CGRP protein synthesis by small interfering RNA exacerbated (but overexpression of the CGRP gene ameliorated) H/R-induced cell death, which supports the autocrine effect of CGRP on A549 cells. Exogenous bioactive CGRP mimicked the beneficial effect of PC and up-regulated the expression of heat shock protein 70 (HSP70), which might act as the end effector to maintain cell viability. These effects were sensitive to hCGRP(8-37), calphostin C (a protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor), and 5-hydroxydecanoic acid (a mitochondrial K(+)(ATP) channel blocker) but were insensitive to protein kinase A blockers. Moreover, CGRP induced the membrane translocation of PKCepsilon. PKCV1-2 (a cell-permeable inhibitory peptide of PKCepsilon) effectively abolished CGRP-induced HSP70 expression and cell protection. Therefore, PC induces CGRP secretion from human alveolar epithelial cells, and the locally released CGRP acts back on these cells, protecting them from H/R injury. The post-receptor signaling of CGRP is through PKCepsilon-dependent expression of HSP70.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;21;20325-30

  • Identification of conserved amino acids N-terminal of the PKC epsilon C1b domain crucial for protein kinase C epsilon-mediated induction of neurite outgrowth.

    Ling M, Trollér U, Zeidman R, Stensman H, Schultz A and Larsson C

    Lund University, Molecular Medicine, Malmö University Hospital, 205 02 Malmö, Sweden.

    We have shown previously that protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon can induce neurite outgrowth independently of its catalytic activity via a region encompassing its C1 domains. In this study we aimed at identifying specific amino acids in this region crucial for induction of neurite outgrowth. Deletion studies demonstrated that only 4 amino acids N-terminal and 20 residues C-terminal of the C1 domains are necessary for neurite induction. The corresponding regions from all other novel isoforms but not from PKCalpha were also neuritogenic. Further mutation studies indicated that amino acids immediately N-terminal of the C1a domain are important for plasma membrane localization and thereby for neurite induction. Addition of phorbol ester made this construct neurite-inducing. However, mutation of amino acids flanking the C1b domain reduced the neurite-inducing capacity even in the presence of phorbol esters. Sequence alignment highlighted an 8-amino acid-long sequence N-terminal of the C1b domain that is conserved in all novel PKC isoforms. Specifically, we found that mutations of either Phe-237, Val-239, or Met-241 in PKCepsilon completely abolished the neurite-inducing capacity of PKCepsilon C1 domains. Phorbol ester treatment could not restore neurite induction but led to a plasma membrane translocation. Furthermore, if 12 amino acids were included N-terminal of the C1b domain, the C1a domain was dispensable for neurite induction. In conclusion, we have identified a highly conserved sequence N-terminal of the C1b domain that is crucial for neurite induction by PKCepsilon, indicating that this motif may be critical for some morphological effects of PKC.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;18;17910-9

  • Opposing effects of protein kinase Calpha and protein kinase Cepsilon on collagen expression by human lung fibroblasts are mediated via MEK/ERK and caveolin-1 signaling.

    Tourkina E, Gooz P, Pannu J, Bonner M, Scholz D, Hacker S, Silver RM, Trojanowska M and Hoffman S

    Division of Rheumatology and Immunology, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina 29425, USA. tourkine@musc.edu

    The roles of MEK, ERK, the epsilon and alpha isoforms of protein kinase C (PKC), and caveolin-1 in regulating collagen expression were studied in normal lung fibroblasts. Knocking down caveolin-1 gave particularly striking results. A 70% decrease caused a 5-fold increase in MEK/ERK activation and collagen expression. The combined data reveal a branched signaling pathway. In its central portion MEK activates ERK, leading to increased collagen expression. Two branches converge on MEK/ERK. In one, increased PKCepsilon leads to MEK/ERK activation. In another, increased PKCalpha induces caveolin-1 expression, which in turn inhibits MEK/ERK activation and collagen expression. Lung fibroblasts from scleroderma patients with pulmonary fibrosis showed altered signaling. Consistent with their overexpression of collagen, scleroderma lung fibroblasts contain more activated MEK/ERK and less caveolin-1 than normal lung fibroblasts. Because cutaneous fibrosis is the hallmark of scleroderma, we also studied dermal fibroblasts. As in lung, there was more activated MEK/ERK in cells from scleroderma patients than in control cells, and MEK inhibition decreased collagen expression. However, the distinctive levels of PKCepsilon, PKCalpha, and caveolin-1 in lung and dermal fibroblasts from scleroderma patients and control subjects indicate that the links between these signaling proteins and MEK/ERK must function differently in the four cell types. Finally, we confirmed the relevance of these signaling cascades in vivo. The combined results demonstrate that a branched signaling pathway involving MEK, ERK, PKCepsilon, PKCalpha, and caveolin-1 regulates collagen expression in normal lung tissue and is perturbed during fibrosis.

    Funded by: NCCIH NIH HHS: R21 AT00382; NHLBI NIH HHS: R01 HL73718; NIAMS NIH HHS: P60 AR049459, R01 AR44883

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;14;13879-87

  • Generation and annotation of the DNA sequences of human chromosomes 2 and 4.

    Hillier LW, Graves TA, Fulton RS, Fulton LA, Pepin KH, Minx P, Wagner-McPherson C, Layman D, Wylie K, Sekhon M, Becker MC, Fewell GA, Delehaunty KD, Miner TL, Nash WE, Kremitzki C, Oddy L, Du H, Sun H, Bradshaw-Cordum H, Ali J, Carter J, Cordes M, Harris A, Isak A, van Brunt A, Nguyen C, Du F, Courtney L, Kalicki J, Ozersky P, Abbott S, Armstrong J, Belter EA, Caruso L, Cedroni M, Cotton M, Davidson T, Desai A, Elliott G, Erb T, Fronick C, Gaige T, Haakenson W, Haglund K, Holmes A, Harkins R, Kim K, Kruchowski SS, Strong CM, Grewal N, Goyea E, Hou S, Levy A, Martinka S, Mead K, McLellan MD, Meyer R, Randall-Maher J, Tomlinson C, Dauphin-Kohlberg S, Kozlowicz-Reilly A, Shah N, Swearengen-Shahid S, Snider J, Strong JT, Thompson J, Yoakum M, Leonard S, Pearman C, Trani L, Radionenko M, Waligorski JE, Wang C, Rock SM, Tin-Wollam AM, Maupin R, Latreille P, Wendl MC, Yang SP, Pohl C, Wallis JW, Spieth J, Bieri TA, Berkowicz N, Nelson JO, Osborne J, Ding L, Meyer R, Sabo A, Shotland Y, Sinha P, Wohldmann PE, Cook LL, Hickenbotham MT, Eldred J, Williams D, Jones TA, She X, Ciccarelli FD, Izaurralde E, Taylor J, Schmutz J, Myers RM, Cox DR, Huang X, McPherson JD, Mardis ER, Clifton SW, Warren WC, Chinwalla AT, Eddy SR, Marra MA, Ovcharenko I, Furey TS, Miller W, Eichler EE, Bork P, Suyama M, Torrents D, Waterston RH and Wilson RK

    Genome Sequencing Center, Washington University School of Medicine, Campus Box 8501, 4444 Forest Park Avenue, St. Louis, Missouri 63108, USA.

    Human chromosome 2 is unique to the human lineage in being the product of a head-to-head fusion of two intermediate-sized ancestral chromosomes. Chromosome 4 has received attention primarily related to the search for the Huntington's disease gene, but also for genes associated with Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome, polycystic kidney disease and a form of muscular dystrophy. Here we present approximately 237 million base pairs of sequence for chromosome 2, and 186 million base pairs for chromosome 4, representing more than 99.6% of their euchromatic sequences. Our initial analyses have identified 1,346 protein-coding genes and 1,239 pseudogenes on chromosome 2, and 796 protein-coding genes and 778 pseudogenes on chromosome 4. Extensive analyses confirm the underlying construction of the sequence, and expand our understanding of the structure and evolution of mammalian chromosomes, including gene deserts, segmental duplications and highly variant regions.

    Nature 2005;434;7034;724-31

  • n-3 PUFAs modulate T-cell activation via protein kinase C-alpha and -epsilon and the NF-kappaB signaling pathway.

    Denys A, Hichami A and Khan NA

    University of Burgundy, Department of Physiology, Unité Propre de Recherche et de l'Enseignement Supérieur (UPRES) Lipids and Nutrition, Faculty of Life Sciences, Dijon 21000, France.

    We elucidated the mechanisms of action of two n-3 PUFAs, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), in Jurkat T-cells. Both DHA and EPA were principally incorporated into phospholipids in the following order: phosphatidylcholine < phosphatidylethanolamine < phosphatidylinositol/phosphatidylserine. Furthermore, two isoforms of phospholipase A(2) (i.e., calcium-dependent and calcium-independent) were implicated in the release of DHA and EPA, respectively, during activation of these cells. The two fatty acids inhibited the phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA)-induced plasma membrane translocation of protein kinase C (PKC)-alpha and -epsilon. The two n-3 PUFAs also inhibited the nuclear translocation of nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB) and the transcription of the interleukin-2 (IL-2) gene in PMA-activated Jurkat T-cells. Together, these results demonstrate that DHA and EPA, being released by two isoforms of phospholipase A(2), modulate IL-2 gene expression by exerting their action on two PKC isoforms and NF-kappaB in Jurkat T-cells.

    Journal of lipid research 2005;46;4;752-8

  • Variable expression of protein kinase C epsilon in human melanoma cells regulates sensitivity to TRAIL-induced apoptosis.

    Gillespie S, Zhang XD and Hersey P

    Immunology and Oncology Unit, Newcastle Mater Hospital, Room 443, David Maddison Clinical Sciences Building, Corner King & Watt Streets, Newcastle, New South Wales 2300, Australia.

    Protein kinase C (PKC) activation is believed to protect against apoptosis induced by death receptors. We have found however that the effect of activation of PKC on tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL)-induced apoptosis of melanoma differs between cell lines. Pretreatment with phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) led to inhibition of apoptosis in the majority of the melanoma cell lines, but those with relatively low PKC epsilon expression were sensitized to TRAIL-induced apoptosis. Introduction of PKC epsilon into PKC epsilon-low cell lines reversed sensitization of the cells to TRAIL-induced apoptosis by PMA. In contrast, a dominant-negative form of PKC epsilon caused an increase in sensitivity. The changes in sensitivity to TRAIL-induced apoptosis were reflected in similar changes in conformation of Bax and its relocation from the cytosol to mitochondria. Similarly, there were concordant increases or decreases in mitochondrial release of second mitochondria-derived activator of caspase/DIABLO, activation of caspase-3, and processing of its substrates. Activation of PKC seemed to mediate its effects upstream of mitochondria but downstream of caspase-8 and Bid in that pretreatment with PMA did not cause significant changes in the expression levels of TRAIL death receptors, alterations in the levels of caspase-8 activation, or cleavage of Bid. PKC activated the anti-apoptotic extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 pathway, but inhibitors of this pathway only partially reversed the protective effect of PKC against TRAIL-induced apoptosis. These results provide further insights into the variable responses of melanoma to TRAIL-induced apoptosis and may help define responsive phenotypes to treatment of melanoma with TRAIL.

    Molecular cancer therapeutics 2005;4;4;668-76

  • Translocation of diacylglycerol kinase theta from cytosol to plasma membrane in response to activation of G protein-coupled receptors and protein kinase C.

    van Baal J, de Widt J, Divecha N and van Blitterswijk WJ

    Division of Cellular Biochemistry, The Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam 1066 CX, The Netherlands.

    Diacylglycerol kinase (DGK) phosphorylates the second messenger diacylglycerol (DAG) to phosphatidic acid. We previously identified DGK as one of nine mammalian DGK isoforms and reported on its regulation by interaction with RhoA and by translocation to the plasma membrane in response to noradrenaline. Here, we have investigated how the localization of DGK, fused to green fluorescent protein, is controlled upon activation of G protein-coupled receptors in A431 cells. Extracellular ATP, bradykinin, or thrombin induced DGK translocation from the cytoplasm to the plasma membrane within 2-6 min. This translocation, independent of DGK activity, was preceded by protein kinase C (PKC) translocation and was blocked by PKC inhibitors. Conversely, activation of PKC by 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate induced DGK translocation. Membrane-permeable DAG (dioctanoylglycerol) also induced DGK translocation but in a PKC (staurosporin)-independent fashion. Mutations in the cysteine-rich domains of DGK abrogated its hormone- and DAG-induced translocation, suggesting that these domains are essential for DAG binding and DGK recruitment to the membrane. We show that DGK interacts selectively with and is phosphorylated by PKCepsilon and -eta and that peptide agonist-induced selective activation of PKCepsilon directly leads to DGK translocation. Our data are consistent with the concept that hormone-induced PKC activation regulates the intracellular localization of DGK, which may be important in the negative regulation of PKCepsilon and/or PKCeta activity.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;11;9870-8

  • Protein kinase C modulates agonist-sensitive release of Ca2+ from internal stores in HEK293 cells overexpressing the calcium sensing receptor.

    Sakwe AM, Rask L and Gylfe E

    Department of Medical Biochemistry and Microbiology, Uppsala University, Biomedical Centre, Box 582, SE-751 23 Uppsala, Sweden.

    This study examined the mechanism of Ca2+ entry and the role of protein kinase C (PKC) in Ca2+ signaling induced by activation of the calcium sensing receptor (CaR) in HEK293 cells stably expressing the CaR. We demonstrate that influx of Ca2+ following CaR activation exhibits store-operated characteristics in being associated with Ca2+ store depletion and inhibited by 2-aminoethoxydiphenyl borate. Inhibition of PKC with GF109203X, Go6983, or Go6976 and down-regulation of PKC activity enhanced the release of Ca2+ from internal stores in response to the polyvalent cationic CaR agonist neomycin, whereas activation of PKC with acute 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate treatment decreased the release. In contrast, overexpression of wild type PKC-alpha or -epsilon augmented the neomycin-induced release of Ca2+ from internal stores, whereas dominant negative PKC-epsilon strongly decreased the release, but dominant negative PKC-alpha had little effect. Prolonged treatment of cells with 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate effectively down-regulated immunoreactive PKC-alpha but had little effect on the expression of PKC-epsilon. Together these results indicate that diacylglycerol-responsive PKC isoforms differentially influence CaR agonist-induced release of Ca2+ from internal stores. The fundamentally different results obtained when overexpressing or functionally down-regulating specific PKC isoforms as compared with pharmacological manipulation of PKC activity indicate the need for caution when interpreting data obtained with the latter approach.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;6;4436-41

  • Signalling crosstalk in FGF2-mediated protection of endothelial cells from HIV-gp120.

    Langford D, Hurford R, Hashimoto M, Digicaylioglu M and Masliah E

    Department of Pathology, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, USA. tdlangford@ucsd.edu

    Background: The blood brain barrier (BBB) is the first line of defence of the central nervous system (CNS) against circulating pathogens, such as HIV. The cytotoxic HIV protein, gp120, damages endothelial cells of the BBB, thereby compromising its integrity, which may lead to migration of HIV-infected cells into the brain. Fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2), produced primarily by astrocytes, promotes endothelial cell fitness and angiogenesis. We hypothesized that treatment of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) with FGF2 would protect the cells from gp120-mediated toxicity via endothelial cell survival signalling.

    Results: Exposure of HUVEC to gp120 resulted in dose- and time-dependent cell death; whereas, pre-treatment of endothelial cells with FGF2 protected cells from gp120 angiotoxicity. Treatment of HUVEC with FGF2 resulted in dose- and time-dependent activation of the extracellular regulated kinase (ERK), with moderate effects on phosphoinositol 3 kinase (PI3K) and protein kinase B (PKB), also known as AKT, but no effects on glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3beta) activity. Using pharmacological approaches, gene transfer and kinase activity assays, we show that FGF2-mediated angioprotection against gp120 toxicity is regulated by crosstalk among the ERK, PI3K-AKT and PKC signalling pathways.

    Conclusions: Taken together, these results suggest that FGF2 may play a significant role in maintaining the integrity of the BBB during the progress of HIV associated cerebral endothelial cell damage.

    Funded by: NIDA NIH HHS: DA12065, P01 DA012065; NIMH NIH HHS: K01 MH071206, MH071206, MH58164, MH59745, MH62962, P50 MH045294, R01 MH062962, R24 MH059745

    BMC neuroscience 2005;6;8

  • G alpha(q)-coupled receptors in human atrium function through protein kinase C epsilon and delta.

    Kilts JD, Grocott HP and Kwatra MM

    Department of Anesthesiology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA.

    Cardiac G alpha(q)-coupled receptors (such as endothelin, angiotensin, and alpha1-adrenergic receptors) mediate cardiac inotropy and chronotropy, as well as the development of hypertrophy. These receptors signal through protein kinase C (PKC), a family of 12 isozymes including PKC alpha, beta I, beta II, gamma, delta, epsilon, theta, eta, lambda, iota, zeta, and mu. Of these PKC isozymes, alpha, beta II, gamma, epsilon, delta, and zeta have been implicated in signaling through cardiac G alpha(q)-coupled receptors in various animal models. However, the profile of which isozymes are activated by a given G alpha(q)-coupled receptor varies among animal species. Thus, these results can not be extrapolated to human heart. In this study, we examine PKC isozymes activated by three different G alpha(q)-coupled receptors in human atrial tissue. Live atrial appendages obtained from the operating room were sliced and treated with agonists of G alpha(q)-coupled receptors, and cellular redistribution of PKC isozymes was examined by immunoblotting. We find that stimulation of G alpha(q)-coupled receptors in human atrium activates PKC epsilon and delta only, under both acute (5 min) and longer (35 min) stimulations. Further, PKC epsilon and delta exhibit distinct subcellular redistribution patterns; while both translocate to the plasma membrane upon G alpha(q) stimulation, PKC delta also redistributes to mitochondria. We conclude that PKC epsilon and delta are the main PKC isozymes involved in G alpha(q)-mediated signaling in human atria.

    Funded by: NIA NIH HHS: AG00029, AG15817

    Journal of molecular and cellular cardiology 2005;38;2;267-76

  • Tumor cell-mediated induction of the stromal factor stromelysin-3 requires heterotypic cell contact-dependent activation of specific protein kinase C isoforms.

    Louis K, Guérineau N, Fromigué O, Defamie V, Collazos A, Anglard P, Shipp MA, Auberger P, Joubert D and Mari B

    INSERM U526, IFR50, Faculté de Médecine Pasteur, 06107 Nice, France.

    Stromelysin-3 (ST3, MMP-11) has been shown to be strongly overexpressed in stromal fibroblasts of most invasive human carcinomas. However, the molecular mechanisms leading to ST3 expression in nonmalignant fibroblasts remain unknown. The aim of the present study was to analyze the signaling pathways activated in normal pulmonary fibroblasts after their interaction with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells and leading to ST3 expression. The use of selective signaling pathway inhibitors showed that conventional and novel protein kinase Cs (PKC) were required for ST3 induction, whereas Src kinases exerted a negative control. We observed by both conventional and real time confocal microscopy that green fluorescent protein-tagged PKCalpha and PKCepsilon, but not PKCdelta, transfected in fibroblasts, accumulate selectively at the cell-cell contacts between fibroblasts and tumor cells. In agreement, RNAi-mediated depletion of PKCalpha and PKCepsilon, but not PKCdelta significantly decreased co-culture-dependent ST3 production. Finally, a tetracycline-inducible expression model allowed us to confirm the central role of these PKC isoforms and the negative regulatory function of c-Src in the control of ST3 expression. Altogether, our data emphasize signaling changes occurring in the tumor microenvironment that may define new stromal targets for therapeutic intervention.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2005;280;2;1272-83

  • Protein kinase C isoforms differentially phosphorylate human choline acetyltransferase regulating its catalytic activity.

    Dobransky T, Doherty-Kirby A, Kim AR, Brewer D, Lajoie G and Rylett RJ

    Department of Physiology, University of Western Ontario and Cell Biology Research Group, and Robarts Research Institute, London, Ontario N6A 5C1, Canada.

    Choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) synthesizes acetylcholine in cholinergic neurons; regulation of its activity or response to physiological stimuli is poorly understood. We show that ChAT is differentially phosphorylated by protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms on four serines (Ser-440, Ser-346, Ser-347, and Ser-476) and one threonine (Thr-255). This phosphorylation is hierarchical, with phosphorylation at Ser-476 required for phosphorylation at other serines. Phosphorylation at some, but not all, sites regulates basal catalysis and activation. Ser-476 with Ser-440 and Ser-346/347 maintains basal ChAT activity. Ser-440 is targeted by Arg-442 for phosphorylation by PKC. Arg-442 is mutated spontaneously (R442H) in congenital myasthenic syndrome, rendering ChAT inactive and causing neuromuscular failure. This mutation eliminates phosphorylation of Ser-440, and Arg-442, not phosphorylation of Ser-440, appears primarily responsible for ChAT activity, with Ser-440 phosphorylation modulating catalysis. Finally, basal ChAT phosphorylation in neurons is mediated predominantly by PKC at Ser-476, with PKC activation increasing phosphorylation at Ser-440 and enhancing ChAT activity.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;50;52059-68

  • Regulation of ADAM12 cell-surface expression by protein kinase C epsilon.

    Sundberg C, Thodeti CK, Kveiborg M, Larsson C, Parker P, Albrechtsen R and Wewer UM

    Institute of Molecular Pathology, University of Copenhagen, Frederik V's Vej 11, Copenhagen, DK-2100, Denmark.

    The ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloprotease) family consists of multidomain cell-surface proteins that have a major impact on cell behavior. These transmembrane-anchored proteins are synthesized as proforms that have (from the N terminus): a prodomain; a metalloprotease-, disintegrin-like-, cysteine-rich, epidermal growth factor-like, and transmembrane domain; and a cytoplasmic tail. The 90-kDa mature form of human ADAM12 is generated in the trans-Golgi through cleavage of the prodomain by a furin-peptidase and is stored intracellularly until translocation to the cell surface as a constitutively active protein. However, little is known about the regulation of ADAM12 cell-surface translocation. Here, we used human RD rhabdomyosarcoma cells, which express ADAM12 at the cell surface, in a temporal pattern. We report that protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon induces ADAM12 translocation to the cell surface and that catalytic activity of PKCepsilon is required for this translocation. The following results support this conclusion: 1) treatment of cells with 0.1 microM phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) enhanced ADAM12 cell-surface immunostaining, 2) ADAM12 and PKCepsilon could be co-immunoprecipitated from membrane-enriched fractions of PMA-treated cells, 3) RD cells transfected with EGFP-tagged, myristoylated PKCepsilon expressed more ADAM12 at the cell surface than did non-transfected cells, and 4) RD cells transfected with a kinase-inactive PKCepsilon mutant did not exhibit ADAM12 cell-surface translocation upon PMA treatment. Finally, we demonstrate that the C1 and C2 domains of PKCepsilon both contain a binding site for ADAM12. These studies show that PKCepsilon plays a critical role in the regulation of ADAM12 cell-surface expression.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;49;51601-11

  • Integrin signaling links protein kinase Cepsilon to the protein kinase B/Akt survival pathway in recurrent prostate cancer cells.

    Wu D, Thakore CU, Wescott GG, McCubrey JA and Terrian DM

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA.

    Failure of hormone therapy often involves an outgrowth of protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon)-positive cells in recurrent prostate cancer. Our previous investigations have uncovered evidence of a complex signaling network operating downstream of this oncogenic protein kinase to actively advance the survival and proliferation of prostate cancer cells. In this study, we present evidence of a functional interplay among integrin receptors, PKCepsilon, and protein kinase B (PKB/Akt) in recurrent CWR-R1 prostate cancer cells. Flow cytometry and confocal microscopy provided evidence that PKCepsilon signaling promoted the assembly of matrix adhesions containing an abundance of colocalized actin filaments and beta1 integrins that exhibited an exposed activation epitope on the surface of live CWR-R1 cells. Reciprocal coimmunoprecipitations provided evidence of signaling complexes containing PKCepsilon, beta1 integrins, Src, and PKB/Akt in CWR-R1 cell cultures. An investigation into the functional significance of these interactions, and of their positive influence on beta1 integrins, demonstrated that PKCepsilon and several key components of the PKB/Akt signaling pathway remain constitutively phosphorylated/activated in adherent but not suspension cultures of PTEN-positive CWR-R1 cells. Gene transfer, antisense and pharmacological experiments provided additional support for the hypothesis that a mutually reinforcing signaling loop sustains the activation of beta1 integrins, PKCepsilon, and PKB/Akt in adherent prostate cancer cells.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA98195

    Oncogene 2004;23;53;8659-72

  • IL-10 production induced by HIV-1 Tat stimulation of human monocytes is dependent on the activation of PKC beta(II) and delta isozymes.

    Contreras X, Bennasser Y and Bahraoui E

    Laboratoire d'immuno-virologie des lentivirus des primates, EA3038, Université Paul Sabatier, 118, route de Narbonne, 31062 Toulouse, France.

    The effect of HIV-1 Tat protein on the production of IL-10, an immunosuppressive cytokine, was examined in human primary monocytes obtained from healthy HIV-1-negative blood donors. As expected and in agreement with our previous data, a dose-dependent induction of IL-10 was observed. In addition, we showed that this induction is mediated by the PKC pathway: in the presence of Ro 31-8220, an inhibitor of all PKC isozymes, or after 48 h of PMA treatment, Tat protein becomes unable to stimulate IL-10 production. Among the 11 PKC isozymes, eight (PKC alpha, beta(I), beta(II), delta, epsilon, eta, zeta, mu) are expressed in monocytes. In this study, by analyzing the translocation to the membrane after Tat stimulation, we showed that PKC alpha, beta(I), beta(II), delta and epsilon isozymes are activated by Tat. Moreover, by combining different approaches including selective PKC inhibitors (Gö6983, Gö6976, hispidin and rottlerin), we showed that PKC beta(II) and delta isozymes are essential for the activation of IL-10 production in human monocytes following stimulation by HIV-1 Tat protein.

    Microbes and infection 2004;6;13;1182-90

  • Decay-accelerating factor induction on vascular endothelium by vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is mediated via a VEGF receptor-2 (VEGF-R2)- and protein kinase C-alpha/epsilon (PKCalpha/epsilon)-dependent cytoprotective signaling pathway and is inhibited by cyclosporin A.

    Mason JC, Steinberg R, Lidington EA, Kinderlerer AR, Ohba M and Haskard DO

    British Heart Foundation Cardiovascular Medicine Unit, Eric Bywaters Center, Imperial College London, Hammersmith Hospital, London W12 0NN, United Kingdom. justin.mason@imperial.ac.uk

    Decay-accelerating factor (DAF), a membrane-bound complement regulatory protein, is up-regulated on endothelial cells (ECs) following treatment with vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), providing enhanced protection from complement-mediated injury. We explored the signaling pathways involved in this response. Incubation of human umbilical vein ECs with VEGF induced a 3-fold increase in DAF expression. Inhibition by flk-1 kinase inhibitor SU1498 and failure of placental growth factor (PlGF) to up-regulate DAF confirmed the role of VEGF-R2. The response was also blocked by pretreatment with phospholipase C-gamma (PLCgamma) inhibitor U71322 and protein kinase C (PKC) antagonist GF109203X. In contrast, no effect was seen with nitric oxide synthase inhibitor N(G)-monomethyl-l-arginine (l-NMMA). Use of PKC agonists and isozyme-specific pseudosubstrate peptide antagonists suggested a role for PKCalpha and -epsilon in VEGF-mediated DAF up-regulation. This was confirmed by transfection of ECs with PKCalpha and -epsilon dominant-negative constructs, which in combination completely abrogated induction of DAF by VEGF. In contrast, LY290042, a phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibitor, significantly augmented DAF expression, suggesting a negative regulatory role for phosphoinositide 3-kinase. The widely used immunosuppressive drug cyclosporin A (CsA) inhibited DAF induction by VEGF in a dose-dependent manner. The VEGF-induced DAF expression was functionally effective, significantly reducing complement-mediated EC lysis, and this cytoprotective effect was reversed by CsA. These data provide evidence for a VEGF-R2-, phospholipase C-gamma-, and PKCalpha/epsilon-mediated cytoprotective pathway in ECs. This may represent an important mechanism for the maintenance of vascular integrity during chronic inflammation involving complement activation. Moreover, inhibition of this pathway by CsA may play a role in CsA-mediated vascular injury.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;40;41611-8

  • The status, quality, and expansion of the NIH full-length cDNA project: the Mammalian Gene Collection (MGC).

    Gerhard DS, Wagner L, Feingold EA, Shenmen CM, Grouse LH, Schuler G, Klein SL, Old S, Rasooly R, Good P, Guyer M, Peck AM, Derge JG, Lipman D, Collins FS, Jang W, Sherry S, Feolo M, Misquitta L, Lee E, Rotmistrovsky K, Greenhut SF, Schaefer CF, Buetow K, Bonner TI, Haussler D, Kent J, Kiekhaus M, Furey T, Brent M, Prange C, Schreiber K, Shapiro N, Bhat NK, Hopkins RF, Hsie F, Driscoll T, Soares MB, Casavant TL, Scheetz TE, Brown-stein MJ, Usdin TB, Toshiyuki S, Carninci P, Piao Y, Dudekula DB, Ko MS, Kawakami K, Suzuki Y, Sugano S, Gruber CE, Smith MR, Simmons B, Moore T, Waterman R, Johnson SL, Ruan Y, Wei CL, Mathavan S, Gunaratne PH, Wu J, Garcia AM, Hulyk SW, Fuh E, Yuan Y, Sneed A, Kowis C, Hodgson A, Muzny DM, McPherson J, Gibbs RA, Fahey J, Helton E, Ketteman M, Madan A, Rodrigues S, Sanchez A, Whiting M, Madari A, Young AC, Wetherby KD, Granite SJ, Kwong PN, Brinkley CP, Pearson RL, Bouffard GG, Blakesly RW, Green ED, Dickson MC, Rodriguez AC, Grimwood J, Schmutz J, Myers RM, Butterfield YS, Griffith M, Griffith OL, Krzywinski MI, Liao N, Morin R, Morrin R, Palmquist D, Petrescu AS, Skalska U, Smailus DE, Stott JM, Schnerch A, Schein JE, Jones SJ, Holt RA, Baross A, Marra MA, Clifton S, Makowski KA, Bosak S, Malek J and MGC Project Team

    The National Institutes of Health's Mammalian Gene Collection (MGC) project was designed to generate and sequence a publicly accessible cDNA resource containing a complete open reading frame (ORF) for every human and mouse gene. The project initially used a random strategy to select clones from a large number of cDNA libraries from diverse tissues. Candidate clones were chosen based on 5'-EST sequences, and then fully sequenced to high accuracy and analyzed by algorithms developed for this project. Currently, more than 11,000 human and 10,000 mouse genes are represented in MGC by at least one clone with a full ORF. The random selection approach is now reaching a saturation point, and a transition to protocols targeted at the missing transcripts is now required to complete the mouse and human collections. Comparison of the sequence of the MGC clones to reference genome sequences reveals that most cDNA clones are of very high sequence quality, although it is likely that some cDNAs may carry missense variants as a consequence of experimental artifact, such as PCR, cloning, or reverse transcriptase errors. Recently, a rat cDNA component was added to the project, and ongoing frog (Xenopus) and zebrafish (Danio) cDNA projects were expanded to take advantage of the high-throughput MGC pipeline.

    Funded by: PHS HHS: N01-C0-12400

    Genome research 2004;14;10B;2121-7

  • G protein-coupled receptor-mediated phosphorylation of the activation loop of protein kinase D: dependence on plasma membrane translocation and protein kinase Cepsilon.

    Rey O, Reeve JR, Zhukova E, Sinnett-Smith J and Rozengurt E

    Department of Medicine, UCLA-CURE Digestive Diseases Research Center and Molecular Biology Institute, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California-Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA.

    Protein kinase D (PKD) is a serine/threonine protein kinase activated by G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) agonists through an incompletely characterized mechanism that includes its reversible plasma membrane translocation and activation loop phosphorylation via a protein kinase C (PKC)-dependent pathway. To gain a better understanding of the mechanism regulating the activation of PKD in response to GPCR stimulation, we investigated the role of its rapid plasma membrane translocation on its activation loop phosphorylation and identified the endogenous PKC isozyme that mediates that event in vivo. We had found that the activation loop of a PKD mutant, with reduced affinity for diacylglycerol and phorbol esters, was only phosphorylated upon its plasma membrane association. We also found that the activation loop phosphorylation and rapid plasma membrane dissociation of PKD were inhibited either by preventing the plasma membrane translocation of PKCepsilon, through abolition of its interaction with receptor for activated C kinase, or by suppressing the expression of PKCepsilon via specific small interfering RNAs. Thus, this study demonstrates that the plasma membrane translocation of PKD, in response to GPCR stimulation, is necessary for the PKCepsilon-mediated phosphorylation of the activation loop of PKD and that this event requires the translocation of both kinases to the plasma membrane. Based on these and previous results, we propose a model of GPCR-mediated PKD regulation that integrates its changes in distribution, catalytic activity, and multisite phosphorylation.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: K01 CA 097956, P50 CA 090388; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK 33580, DK 41301, DK 55003, DK 56930

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;33;34361-72

  • Keratin 8 and 18 hyperphosphorylation is a marker of progression of human liver disease.

    Toivola DM, Ku NO, Resurreccion EZ, Nelson DR, Wright TL and Omary MB

    Department of Medicine, Palo Alto VA Medical Center, Stanford University School of Medicine Digestive Disease Center, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA. dtoivola@stanford.edu

    Keratin 8 and 18 (K8/18) phosphorylation plays a significant and site-specific role in regulating keratin filament organization, association with binding proteins, and modulation of cell cycle progression. Keratin hyperphosphorylation correlates with exposure to a variety of stresses in cultured cells and in mouse models of liver, pancreatic, and gallbladder injury, and it is found in association with mouse and human Mallory bodies. We asked whether K8/18 phosphorylation correlates with human liver disease progression by analyzing liver explants and biopsies of patients with chronic noncirrhotic hepatitis C virus (HCV) or cirrhosis. We also examined the effect of HCV therapy with interleukin-10 on keratin phosphorylation. Using site-specific antiphosphokeratin antibodies we found keratin hyperphosphorylation on most K8/18 sites in all cirrhotic liver explants tested and in most liver biopsies from patients with chronic HCV infection. Immunofluorescence staining of precirrhotic HCV livers showed focal keratin hyperphosphorylation and limited reorganization of keratin filament networks. In cirrhotic livers, keratin hyperphosphorylation occurred preferentially in hepatic nodule cells adjacent to bridging fibrosis and associated with increased stress kinase activation and apoptosis. Histological and serological improvement after interleukin-10 therapy was accompanied by normalization of keratin hyperphosphorylation on some sites in 7 of 10 patients. In conclusion, site-specific keratin phosphorylation in liver disease is a progression marker when increased and a likely regression marker when decreased.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK52951, DK56339

    Hepatology (Baltimore, Md.) 2004;40;2;459-66

  • Differential involvement of protein kinase C alpha and epsilon in the regulated secretion of soluble amyloid precursor protein.

    Lanni C, Mazzucchelli M, Porrello E, Govoni S and Racchi M

    Department of Experimental and Applied Pharmacology, Centre of Excellence in Applied Biology and School of Pharmacy, University of Pavia, Viale Taramelli 14, 27100 Pavia, Italy.

    We investigated the differential role of protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms in the regulated proteolytic release of soluble amyloid precursor protein (sAPPalpha) in SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells. We used cells stably transfected with cDNAs encoding either PKCalpha or PKCepsilon in the antisense orientation, producing a reduction of the expression of PKCalpha and PKCepsilon, respectively. Reduced expression of PKCalpha and/or PKCepsilon did not modify the response of the kinase to phorbol ester stimulation, demonstrating translocation of the respective isoforms from the cytosolic fraction to specific intracellular compartments with an interesting differential localization of PKCalpha to the plasma membrane and PKCepsilon to Golgi-like structures. Reduced expression of PKCalpha significantly impaired the secretion of sAPPalpha induced by treatment with phorbol esters. Treatment of PKCalpha-deficient cells with carbachol induced a significant release of sAPPalpha. These results suggest that the involvement of PKCalpha in carbachol-induced sAPPalpha release is negligible. The response to carbachol is instead completely blocked in PKCepsilon-deficient cells suggesting the importance of PKCepsilon in coupling cholinergic receptors with APP metabolism.

    European journal of biochemistry 2004;271;14;3068-75

  • PKCdelta associates with and is involved in the phosphorylation of RasGRP3 in response to phorbol esters.

    Brodie C, Steinhart R, Kazimirsky G, Rubinfeld H, Hyman T, Ayres JN, Hur GM, Toth A, Yang D, Garfield SH, Stone JC and Blumberg PM

    Faculty of Life Sciences, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan 52900, Israel. chaya@mail.biu.ac.il

    RasGRP is a family of guanine nucleotide exchange factors that activate small GTPases and contain a C1 domain similar to the one present in protein kinase C (PKC). In this study, we examined the interaction of RasGRP3 and PKC in response to the phorbol ester PMA. In Chinese hamster ovary or LN-229 cells heterologously expressing RasGRP3, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) induced translocation of RasGRP3 to the perinuclear region and a decrease in the electrophoretic mobility of RasGRP3. The mobility shift was associated with phosphorylation of RasGRP3 on serine residues and seemed to be PKCdelta-dependent because it was blocked by the PKCdelta inhibitor rottlerin as well as by a PKCdelta kinase-dead mutant. Using coimmunoprecipitation, we found that PMA induced the physical association of RasGRP3 with PKCdelta and, using in situ methods, we showed colocalization of PKCdelta and RasGRP3 in the perinuclear region. PKCdelta phosphorylated RasGRP3 in vitro. Previous studies suggest that ectopic expression of RasGRP3 increases activation of Erk1/2. We found that overexpression of either PKCdelta or RasGRP3 increased the activation of Erk1/2 by PMA. In contrast, coexpression of PKCdelta and RasGRP3 yielded a level of phosphorylation of Erk1/2 similar to that of control vector cells. Our results suggest that PKCdelta may act as an upstream kinase associating with and phosphorylating RasGRP3 in response to PMA. The interaction between RasGRP3 and PKCdelta points to the existence of complex cross-talk between various members of the phorbol ester receptors which can have important impact on major signal transduction pathways and cellular processes induced by phorbol esters or DAG

    Molecular pharmacology 2004;66;1;76-84

  • Protein phosphorylation of human brain glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD)65 and GAD67 and its physiological implications.

    Wei J, Davis KM, Wu H and Wu JY

    Department of Biomedical Sciences, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida 33431, USA.

    Previously, we reported that protein phosphorylation plays an important role in regulating soluble l-glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) [Bao, J. (1995) J. Biol. Chem. 270, 6464-6467] and membrane-associated GAD activity [Hsu, C. C. (1999) J. Biol. Chem. 274, 24366-24371]. Here, we report the effect of phosphorylation on the two well-defined GAD isoforms, namely, GAD65 and GAD67, using highly purified preparations of recombinant human brain GAD65 and GAD67. GAD65 was activated by phosphorylation, while GAD67 was inhibited by phosphorylation. The effect of phosphorylation on GAD65 and GAD67 could be reversed by treatment with protein phosphatases. We further demonstrate that protein kinase A (PKA) and protein kinase C isoform epsilon are the protein kinases responsible for phosphorylation and regulation of GAD67 and GAD65, respectively. Direct phosphorylation of GAD65 and GAD67 was demonstrated by incorporation of [(32)P] from [gamma-(32)P]ATP into purified GAD65 and GAD67 and immunoblotting assay using anti-phosphoserine/threonine antibodies. We have identified one specific phosphorylation site, threonine 91 (T91), in hGAD67 that can be phosphorylated by PKA using MALDI-TOF. Site-directed mutation of T91 to alanine abolished PKA-mediated phosphorylation and inhibition of GAD activity. Furthermore, mutation of T91 to aspartic acid or glutamic acid mimics the effect of phosphorylation. A model depicting the effect of phosphorylation on GAD activity upon neuronal stimulation is also proposed.

    Funded by: NINDS NIH HHS: NS37851

    Biochemistry 2004;43;20;6182-9

  • A critical intramolecular interaction for protein kinase Cepsilon translocation.

    Schechtman D, Craske ML, Kheifets V, Meyer T, Schechtman J and Mochly-Rosen D

    Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305, USA.

    Disruption of intramolecular interactions, translocation from one intracellular compartment to another, and binding to isozyme-specific anchoring proteins termed RACKs, accompany protein kinase C (PKC) activation. We hypothesized that in inactive epsilonPKC, the RACK-binding site is engaged in an intramolecular interaction with a sequence resembling its RACK, termed psiepsilonRACK. An amino acid difference between the psiepsilonRACK sequence in epsilonPKC and its homologous sequence in epsilonRACK constitutes a change from a polar non-charged amino acid (asparagine) in epsilonRACK to a polar charged amino acid (aspartate) in epsilonPKC. Here we show that mutating the aspartate to asparagine in epsilonPKC increased intramolecular interaction as indicated by increased resistance to proteolysis, and slower hormone- or PMA-induced translocation in cells. Substituting aspartate for a non-polar amino acid (alanine) resulted in binding to epsilonRACK without activators, in vitro, and increased translocation rate upon activation in cells. Mathematical modeling suggests that translocation is at least a two-step process. Together our data suggest that intramolecular interaction between the psiepsilonRACK site and RACK-binding site within epsilonPKC is critical and rate limiting in the process of PKC translocation.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: AA1117

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;16;15831-40

  • Cellular protein kinase C isozyme regulation by exogenously delivered physiological disulfides--implications of oxidative protein kinase C regulation to cancer prevention.

    Chu F, Chen LH and O'Brian CA

    Department of Cancer Biology, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA.

    We reported previously that cystine produces regulatory responses in purified, recombinant human protein kinase C-delta (PKCdelta) and PKCepsilon via S-thiolation-triggered mechanisms that are consistent with a cancer preventive effect, i.e. stimulation of the pro-apoptotic, tumor-suppressive isozyme PKCdelta and inactivation of the growth-stimulatory, oncogenic isozyme PKCepsilon, at S-cysteinylation stoichiometries that correspond to modification of a single redox-regulatory cysteine (Cys) switch in each isozyme. In this report, we show that the oxidative regulatory responses of purified PKCdelta and PKCepsilon to cystine are recapitulated in disulfide-treated cells. We report that treatment of COS7-PKCepsilon transfectants with the cystine precursor cystine dimethyl ester (CDME) produced concentration- and time-dependent PKCepsilon inactivation that was associated with oxidative PKCepsilon modification manifested as attenuated band intensity in PKCepsilon immunoblot analyses, and that both PKCepsilon inactivation and modification were reversed by dithiothreitol (DTT) as well as by thioredoxin. We also show that CDME induced biphasic PKCdelta regulation in COS7-PKCdelta transfectants, with DTT-irreversible PKCdelta stimulation at low and DTT-reversible PKCdelta inactivation at high CDME concentrations. The degrees of PKCdelta versus PKCepsilon inactivation by CDME treatment of COS7-PKC transfectants indicate substantial resistance of PKCdelta to inactivation. The PKCdelta stimulatory response in COS7-PKCdelta cells was triggered only by the disulfide agent and not by its reduced thiol counterpart, providing evidence for an oxidative mechanism. Also paralleling the oxidative stimulation of purified PKCdelta by cystine, the stimulation of PKCdelta elicited by CDME treatment of cells involved a stable structural change, which was evident from the stability of the stimulated form of PKCdelta to immunoprecipitation. Demonstration of oxidative regulation of cellular PKCdelta and PKCepsilon by disulfides in this report provides evidence that redox-regulatory sites in PKCdelta and PKCepsilon may offer novel targets for development of cancer preventive or therapeutic agents that selectively inactivate PKCepsilon or stimulate PKCdelta.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA 74831

    Carcinogenesis 2004;25;4;585-96

  • Cooperation between PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon in the regulation of JNK activation in human lung cancer cells.

    Lang W, Wang H, Ding L and Xiao L

    University of Florida Shands Cancer Center, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, College of Medicine, University of Florida, 1600 SW Archer Road, P.O. Box 100232, Gainesville, FL 32610-0232, USA.

    Phorbol esters can induce activation of two mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathways, the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) pathway and the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathway. Unlike ERK activation, JNK activation by phorbol esters is somehow cell-specific. However, the mechanism(s) that contribute to the cell-specific JNK activation remain elusive. In this study, we found that phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) induced JNK activation only in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells, but not in small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cells, whereas ERK activation was detected in both cell types. In NSCLC cells, PMA induced JNK activation in a time- and dose-dependent manner. JNK activation was attenuated by protein kinase C (PKC) down-regulation through prolonged pre-treatment with PMA and significantly inhibited by PKC inhibitors Gö6976 and GF109203X. Subcellular localization studies demonstrated that PMA induced translocation of PKC-alpha, -betaII, and -epsilon isoforms, but not PKC-delta, from the cytosol to the membrane. Analysis of various PKC isoforms revealed that PKC-epsilon was exclusively absent in the SCLC cell lines tested. Ectopic expression of PKC-epsilon in SCLC cells restored PMA activation of JNK signaling only in the presence of PKC-alpha, suggesting that PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon act cooperatively in regulating JNK activation in response to PMA. Furthermore, using dominant negative mutants and pharmacological inhibitors, we define that a putative Rac1/Cdc42/PKC-alpha pathway is convergent with the PKC-epsilon/MEK1/2 pathway in terms of the activation of JNK by PMA.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01-CA88815

    Cellular signalling 2004;16;4;457-67

  • HIV/SIV escape from immune surveillance: focus on Nef.

    Tolstrup M, Ostergaard L, Laursen AL, Pedersen SF and Duch M

    Department of Infectious Disease Q, Skejby Hospital, Denmark.

    During a progressive HIV-1 infection, the gradual decrease in functional CD4+ T(helper) cells leads to immunodeficiency and eventually death in the untreated patient. The virulence role of the lentiviral accessory gene nef was first reported from deletion studies in the macaque model, and research during the past decade has revealed a pluripotent protein capable of multiple points of interference with cellular mechanisms. Importantly, Nef has the capacity to modify the plasma membrane signalling by regulation of receptor/ligand endocytosis as well as to modulate cellular regulation such as apoptosis and lymphocyte activation. This effective defence against an apparent vigorous and specific immune response is crucial for the ability of HIV-1 to persist in the host. Here we review the multitude of functions exerted by Nef and discuss the functional domains of the protein in terms of cellular interaction partners and the effect of nef mutations in the course of AIDS disease progression.

    Current HIV research 2004;2;2;141-51

  • Association of CPI-17 with protein kinase C and casein kinase I.

    Zemlickova E, Johannes FJ, Aitken A and Dubois T

    University of Edinburgh, Division of Biomedical and Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Hugh Robson Building, George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9XD, UK.

    The protein kinase C-potentiated inhibitor protein of 17kDa, called CPI-17, specifically inhibits myosin light chain phosphatase (MLCP). Phosphorylation of Thr-38 in vivo highly potentiates the ability of CPI-17 to inhibit MLCP. Thr-38 has been shown to be phosphorylated in vitro by a number of protein kinases including protein kinase C (PKC), Rho-associated coiled-coil kinase (ROCK), and protein kinase N (PKN). In this study we have focused on the association of protein kinases with CPI-17. Using affinity chromatography and Western blot analysis, we found interaction with all PKC isotypes and casein kinase I isoforms, CKIalpha and CKI. By contrast, ROCK and PKN did not associate with CPI-17, suggesting that PKC may be the relevant kinase that phosphorylates Thr-38 in vivo. CPI-17 interacted with the cysteine-rich domain of PKC and was phosphorylated by all PKC isotypes. We previously found that CPI-17 co-purified with casein kinase I in brain suggesting they are part of a complex and we now show that CPI-17 associates with the kinase domain of CKI isoforms.

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2004;316;1;39-47

  • Effects of the antiandrogen flutamide on the expression of protein kinase C isoenzymes in LNCaP and PC3 human prostate cancer cells.

    Montalvo L, Carmena MJ, Bolaños O, Rodríguez-Henche N, Sánchez-Chapado M and Prieto JC

    Departamento de Bioquímica y Biologia Molecular, Universidad de Alcalá, E-28871 Alcalá de Henares, Spain.

    Flutamide is a nonsteroidal antiandrogen that is frequently used for total androgen blockage in the treatment of advanced prostate cancer. We investigated the effect of this antiandrogen on the expression of protein kinase C (PKC) isoenzymes (alpha, beta1, epsilon, zeta) that are involved in cell growth, apoptosis and neoplastic transformation. Androgen-dependent (LNCaP) and independent (PC3) human prostate cancer cells were cultured in a medium that contained fetal bovine serum (FBS) or charcoal-stripped serum (CSS) and treated with 10 microM flutamide. The expression of PKC isoenzymes and the androgen receptor (AR) were analyzed by Western blot and RT-PCR, respectively. Serum steroids differentially regulate the expression of PKC isoenzymes in LNCaP and PC3 cells. Flutamide up-regulated the expression of alpha, beta1 and zeta, but not epsilon, PKC isoenzymes in CSS-LNCaP cells. These results were not homogeneously reproduced in the presence of androgens. We observed an opposite effect of flutamide, compared to CSS, on PKCbeta1 isoform expression in CSS-LNCaP suggesting that this antiandrogen exerts an agonistic effect. In PC3 cells flutamide potentiated the expression of the four PKC isoenzymes in almost all conditions tested (FBS- and CSS-cultured cells). Such effect of flutamide in PC3 cells is independent of AR since no expression of AR was detected. These results provide new evidence on antagonistic/agonistic responses of prostate cancer cells to antiandrogen drugs that are widely used in therapy and show that flutamide can elicit responses in prostate cancer cells that do not express AR.

    Bioscience reports 2004;24;1;11-21

  • Protein kinase C epsilon: a new target to control inflammation and immune-mediated disorders.

    Aksoy E, Goldman M and Willems F

    Laboratory of Experimental Immunology, Université Libre de Bruxelles, B-1070, Brussels, Belgium

    Recent advances in understanding the molecular basis for mammalian host immune responses to microbial invasion suggest that the first line of defense against microbes is the recognition of pathogen-associated molecular patterns by a set of germline-encoded receptors: the Toll-like receptors (TLRs). TLRs have been identified as being part of a large family of pathogen-recognition receptors that play a decisive role in the induction of both innate and adaptive immunity. Indeed, activation of T lymphocytes depends on their interaction with dendritic cells previously stimulated by TLR agonists such as bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a TLR-4 ligand. A novel PKC epsilon (epsilon) was recently found to be a critical component of TLR-4 signaling pathway and thereby to play a key role in macrophage and dendritic cell (DC) activation in response to LPS. Thus, controlling the kinase activity of PKC epsilon might represent an efficient strategy to prevent or treat certain inflammatory disorders of microbial origin.

    The international journal of biochemistry & cell biology 2004;36;2;183-8

  • Preservation of base-line hemodynamic function and loss of inducible cardioprotection in adult mice lacking protein kinase C epsilon.

    Gray MO, Zhou HZ, Schafhalter-Zoppoth I, Zhu P, Mochly-Rosen D and Messing RO

    Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, California 94110, USA. gray@medicine.ucsf.edu

    Signaling pathways involving protein kinase C isozymes are modulators of cardiovascular development and response to injury. Protein kinase C epsilon activation in cardiac myocytes reduces necrosis caused by coronary artery disease. However, it is unclear whether protein kinase C epsilon function is required for normal cardiac development or inducible protection against oxidative stress. Protein kinase C delta activation is also observed during cardiac preconditioning. However, its role as a promoter or inhibitor of injury is controversial. We examined hearts from protein kinase C epsilon knock-out mice under physiological conditions and during acute ischemia reperfusion. Null-mutant and wild-type mice displayed equivalent base-line morphology and hemodynamic function. Targeted disruption of the protein kinase C epsilon gene blocked cardioprotection caused by ischemic preconditioning and alpha(1)-adrenergic receptor stimulation. Protein kinase C delta activation increased in protein kinase C epsilon knock-out myocytes without altering resistance to injury. These observations support protein kinase C epsilon activation as an essential component of cardioprotective signaling. Our results favor protein kinase C delta activation as a mediator of normal growth. This study advances the understanding of cellular mechanisms responsible for preservation of myocardial integrity as potential targets for prevention and treatment of ischemic heart disease.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: 5R01AA011135; NIGMS NIH HHS: 5T32GM007546

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;5;3596-604

  • Induction of neurites by the regulatory domains of PKCdelta and epsilon is counteracted by PKC catalytic activity and by the RhoA pathway.

    Ling M, Trollér U, Zeidman R, Lundberg C and Larsson C

    Department of Laboratory Medicine, Molecular Medicine, Lund University, Malmö University Hospital, 205 02 Malmö, Sweden.

    We have shown that protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon, independently of its kinase activity, via its regulatory domain (RD), induces neurites in neuroblastoma cells. This study was designed to evaluate whether the same effect is obtained in nonmalignant neural cells and to dissect mechanisms mediating the effect. Overexpression of PKCepsilon resulted in neurite induction in two immortalised neural cell lines (HiB5 and RN33B). Phorbol ester potentiated neurite outgrowth from PKCepsilon-overexpressing cells and led to neurite induction in cells overexpressing PKCdelta. The effects were potentiated by blocking the PKC catalytic activity with GF109203X. Furthermore, kinase-inactive PKCdelta induced more neurites than the wild-type isoform. The isolated regulatory domains of novel PKC isoforms also induced neurites. Experiments with PKCdelta-overexpressing HiB5 cells demonstrated that phorbol ester, even in the presence of a PKC inhibitor, led to a decrease in stress fibres, indicating an inactivation of RhoA. Active RhoA blocked PKC-induced neurite outgrowth, and inhibition of the RhoA effector ROCK led to neurite outgrowth. This demonstrates that neurite induction by the regulatory domain of PKCdelta can be counteracted by PKCdelta kinase activity, that PKC-induced neurite outgrowth is accompanied by stress fibre dismantling indicating an inactivation of RhoA, and that the RhoA pathway suppresses PKC-mediated neurite outgrowth.

    Experimental cell research 2004;292;1;135-50

  • PAR1-type thrombin receptor stimulates migration and matrix adhesion of human colon carcinoma cells by a PKCepsilon-dependent mechanism.

    Heider I, Schulze B, Oswald E, Henklein P, Scheele J and Kaufmann R

    Department of General and Visceral Surgery, Medical Faculty at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Erlanger Allee 101, D-07747, Germany.

    The proteinase-activated receptor1 (PAR1) was characterized as a functional receptor for thrombin in cells from different tumor entities. In colon carcinoma, its function has to be defined. In this study we demonstrate that the PAR1-selective agonist peptide TFLLRN induced activation of protein kinase C isoenzymes alpha and epsilon in human HT-29 colon carcinoma cells expressing PAR1 endogeneously. On the cellular level, TFLLRN and thrombin prompted HT-29 cell migration and matrix adhesion by a PKCepsilon-dependent mechanism as concluded because of the inhibition of PAR1-mediated effects by the PKC inhibitor bisindolylmaleimide I and the PKCepsilon translocation inhibitory peptide EAVSLKPT but not by the PKC inhibitor Gö 6976. In addition, blockade of PAR1 by RWJ 56110, a selective PAR1 antagonist, fully abolished the effect of thrombin on HT-29 cell migration and adhesion. Therefore, PAR1 seems to be the responsible receptor for thrombin-induced migration and adhesion of human colon carcinoma cells including PKCepsilon as an essential signal transducer.

    Oncology research 2004;14;10;475-82

  • PKC epsilon is a unique regulator for hsp90 beta gene in heat shock response.

    Wu JM, Xiao L, Cheng XK, Cui LX, Wu NH and Shen YF

    National Laboratory of Medical Molecular Biology, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, Beijing 100005, China.

    An early event in cellular heat shock response is the transmittance of stress signals from the cell surface into the nuclei, resulting in the induction of heat shock proteins (Hsps). Protein kinase C (PKC) has been implicated as a key player in transducing stress signals. However, mechanism(s) by which PKC regulates heat shock-induced events remains largely unknown. Here we present data that pan-PKC inhibitor GF109203X, but not classic PKC inhibitor Gö6976, specifically repressed heat shock-induced accumulation of mRNA as well as promoter activity of hsp90 beta, but not hsp90 alpha, in Jurkat cells. Subcellular fractionation studies revealed that heat shock exclusively induced PKC-epsilon membrane translocation. Consistently, expression of a constitutively active PKC-epsilon(A159E) resulted in an enhanced promoter activity of hsp90 beta upon heat shock, whereas a dominant-negative PKC-epsilon(K437R) abolished this effect. In contrast, constitutively active-PKC-alpha or dominant-negative-PKC-alpha had no effects on heat shock induction of the gene. The effect of PKC-epsilon on hsp90 beta expression seems to be stimuli-specific, as phorbol myristate acetate-mediated hsp90 beta expression was PKC-epsilon-independent. We conclude that PKC-epsilon is specifically required in the signaling pathway leading to the induction of hsp90 beta gene in response to heat shock.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01-CA88815

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;51;51143-9

  • Localization of functional endothelin receptor signaling complexes in cardiac transverse tubules.

    Robu VG, Pfeiffer ES, Robia SL, Balijepalli RC, Pi Y, Kamp TJ and Walker JW

    Department of Physiology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin 53706, USA.

    Endothelin-1 (ET-1) is an autocrine factor in the mammalian heart important in enhancing cardiac performance, protecting against myocardial ischemia, and initiating the development of cardiac hypertrophy. The ETA receptor is a seven-transmembrane G-protein-coupled receptor whose precise subcellular localization in cardiac muscle is unknown. Here we used fluorescein ET-1 and 125I-ET-1 to provide evidence for ET-1 receptors in cardiac transverse tubules (T-tubules). Moreover, the ETA receptor and downstream effector phospholipase C-beta 1 were co-localized within T-tubules using standard immunofluorescence techniques, and protein kinase C (PKC)-epsilon-enhanced green fluorescent protein bound reversibly to T-tubules upon activation. Localized photorelease of diacylglycerol further suggested compartmentation of PKC signaling, with release at the myocyte "surface" mimicking the negative inotropic effects of bath-applied PKC activators and "deep" release mimicking the positive inotropic effect of ET-1. The functional significance of T-tubular ET-1 receptors was further tested by rendering the T-tubule lumen inaccessible to bath-applied ET-1. Such "detubulated" cardiac myocytes showed no positive inotropic response to 20 nM ET-1, despite retaining both a nearly normal twitch response to field stimulation and a robust positive inotropic response to 20 nm isoproterenol. We propose that ET-1 enhances myocyte contractility by activating ETA receptor-phospholipase C-beta 1-PKC-epsilon signaling complexes preferentially localized in cardiac T-tubules. Compartmentation of ET-1 signaling complexes may explain the discordant effects of ET-1 versus bath applied PKC activators and may contribute to both the specificity and diversity of the cardiac actions of ET-1.

    Funded by: PHS HHS: P01 04573

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;48;48154-61

  • Rapid association of protein kinase C-epsilon with insulin granules is essential for insulin exocytosis.

    Mendez CF, Leibiger IB, Leibiger B, Høy M, Gromada J, Berggren PO and Bertorello AM

    Rolf Luft Center for Diabetes Research, Department of Molecular Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska Hospital, SE-171 76 Stockholm, Sweden.

    Glucose-dependent exocytosis of insulin requires activation of protein kinase C (PKC). However, because of the great variety of isoforms and their ubiquitous distribution within the beta-cell, it is difficult to predict the importance of a particular isoform and its mode of action. Previous data revealed that two PKC isoforms (alpha and epsilon) translocate to membranes in response to glucose (Zaitzev, S. V., Efendic, S., Arkhammar, P., Bertorello, A. M., and Berggren, P. O. (1995) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 92, 9712-9716). Using confocal microscopy, we have now established that in response to glucose, PKC-epsilon but not PKC-alpha associates with insulin granules and that green fluorescent protein-tagged PKC-epsilon changes its distribution within the cell periphery upon stimulation of beta-cells with glucose. Definite evidence of PKC-epsilon requirement during insulin granule exocytosis was obtained by using a dominant negative mutant of this isoform. The presence of this mutant abolished glucose-induced insulin secretion, whereas transient expression of the wild-type PKC-epsilon led to a significant increase in insulin exocytosis. These results suggest that association of PKC-epsilon with insulin granule membranes represents an important component of the secretory network because it is essential for insulin exocytosis in response to glucose.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK-58508

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;45;44753-7

  • Protein kinase C phosphorylation sensitizes but does not activate the capsaicin receptor transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1).

    Bhave G, Hu HJ, Glauner KS, Zhu W, Wang H, Brasier DJ, Oxford GS and Gereau RW

    Division of Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

    Protein kinase C (PKC) modulates the function of the capsaicin receptor transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1). This modulation manifests as increased current when the channel is activated by capsaicin. In addition, studies have suggested that phosphorylation by PKC might directly gate the channel, because PKC-activating phorbol esters induce TRPV1 currents in the absence of applied ligands. To test whether PKC both modulates and gates the TRPV1 function by direct phosphorylation, we used direct sequencing to determine the major sites of PKC phosphorylation on TRPV1 intracellular domains. We then tested the ability of the PKC-activating phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) to potentiate capsaicin-induced currents and to directly gate TRPV1. We found that mutation of S800 to alanine significantly reduced the PMA-induced enhancement of capsaicin-evoked currents and the direct activation of TRPV1 by PMA. Mutation of S502 to alanine reduced PMA enhancement of capsaicin-evoked currents, but had no effect on direct activation of TRPV1 by PMA. Conversely, mutation of T704 to alanine had no effect on PMA enhancement of capsaicin-evoked currents but dramatically reduced direct activation of TRPV1 by PMA. These results, combined with pharmacological studies showing that inactive phorbol esters also weakly activate TRPV1, suggest that PKC-mediated phosphorylation modulates TRPV1 but does not directly gate the channel. Rather, currents induced by phorbol esters result from the combination of a weak direct ligand-like activation of TRPV1 and the phosphorylation-induced enhancement of the TRPV1 function. Furthermore, modulation of the TRPV1 function by PKC appears to involve distinct phosphorylation sites depending on the mechanism of channel activation.

    Funded by: NIMH NIH HHS: F32 MH 65766, F32 MH065766, R01 MH 60230; NINDS NIH HHS: P01 NS 39420, P01 NS039420, R01 NS 18788, R01 NS 42595, R01 NS018788, R01 NS042595

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2003;100;21;12480-5

  • Differential and regulated binding of cAMP-dependent protein kinase and protein kinase C isoenzymes to gravin in human model neurons: Evidence that gravin provides a dynamic platform for the localization for kinases during neuronal development.

    Piontek J and Brandt R

    Department of Neurobiology, IZN, University of Heidelberg, INF 345, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.

    The membrane cortex has an important role in generating and maintaining spatially and functionally distinct domains in neurons. As a tool to functionally characterize molecules of the membrane cortex, we generated novel monoclonal antibodies against a fraction enriched for components of the neuronal membrane skeleton. We obtained two antibodies against the kinase-anchoring protein gravin. Gravin was strongly up-regulated during differentiation of human model neurons (NT2-N neurons) and was enriched at the inner peripheral cortex in close proximity to the plasma membrane where its localization primarily depended on association with membranes. In differentiated neurons, gravin colocalized in putative signaling complexes with protein kinase C (PKCbetaII) and partially with PKCalpha and cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA). Colocalization with PKCepsilon was not observed. PKCbetaII, PKCalpha, and PKA but not PKCepsilon coprecipitated with gravin indicating physical interaction. Binding of gravin to PKCalpha required the presence of Ca2+ and was increased after inhibition of PKC. In contrast, binding of PKCbetaII and PKA were independent of Ca2+ and PKC inhibition. Activation of PKC decreased binding of PKCalpha to gravin, decreased its association with the plasma membrane, and reduced the mean size of gravin particles. Taken together the data suggest that gravin provides a dynamic platform to localize kinases in an isoenzyme-specific and activation-dependent manner at specific sites in neurons.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;40;38970-9

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon interacts with Bax and promotes survival of human prostate cancer cells.

    McJilton MA, Van Sikes C, Wescott GG, Wu D, Foreman TL, Gregory CW, Weidner DA, Harris Ford O, Morgan Lasater A, Mohler JL and Terrian DM

    Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA.

    Prostatic glandular epithelial cells express protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon ), an oncoprotein that coordinately disrupts the reactivation of the tumor suppressor Rb, derepressess transcriptional elongation of the c-myc oncogene, and propagates survival signals in LNCaP cells. Since the activation of such a program may contribute to the progression of human prostate cancer, a proteomic analysis was performed to gain a more global perspective on the signaling network that PKCepsilon might be capable of engaging in prostate cancer cells. Using CWR22 xenografts, we identified at least 18 different structural, signaling, and stress-related proteins that associated with PKCepsilon, including an interaction with the proapoptotic protein Bax that was novel to recurrent CWR22 tumors. An investigation into the biological significance of the PKCepsilon association with Bax provided the first evidence of an inverse relationship between endogenous levels of PKCepsilon and susceptibility of prostate cancer cells to the apoptotic effects of phorbol esters. Western blot and antisense experiments demonstrated that CWR-R1 cells expressed moderate levels of PKCepsilon and relied on this protein to survive in the presence of phorbol esters, while the apoptosis normally induced by phorbol esters in PKCepsilon -deficient LNCaP cells was dependent on the presence of Bax. Forced expression of PKCepsilon in LNCaP cells was sufficient to confer a significant resistance to phorbol esters and this resistance was associated with an inhibition of phorbol ester-induced Bax conformational rearrangements that are important for Bax oligomerization, mitochondrial integration, and cytochrome c release. Considered in their entirety, our data suggest that an association of PKCepsilon with Bax may neutralize apoptotic signals propagated through a mitochondrial death-signaling pathway.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: P01 CA77739; NICHD NIH HHS: U54 HD35041; NIEHS NIH HHS: ES8397

    Oncogene 2003;22;39;7958-68

  • Roles of specific isoforms of protein kinase C in the transcriptional control of cyclin D1 and related genes.

    Soh JW and Weinstein IB

    Department of Medicine and Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, College of Physicians & Surgeons, Columbia University, New York, New York 10032, USA.

    Although protein kinase C (PKC) has been implicated in cell cycle progression, cell proliferation, and tumor promotion, the precise roles of specific isoforms in these processes is not clear. Therefore, we constructed and analyzed a series of expression vectors that encode hemagglutinin-tagged wild type (WT), constitutively active mutants (Delta NPS and CAT), and dominant negative mutants of PKCs alpha, beta 1, beta 2, gamma, delta, epsilon, eta, zeta, and iota. Cyclin D1 promoter reporter assays done in serum-starved NIH3T3 cells indicated that the constitutively active mutants of PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon were the most potent activators of this reporter, whereas the constitutively active mutant of PKC-delta inhibited its activity. Transient transfection studies with a series of 5'-deleted cyclin D1 promoter constructs showed that the proximal 964-base region, which contains AP-1, SP1, and CRE enhancer elements, is required for activation of the cyclin D1 promoter by PKC-alpha. Deletion of the AP-1 enhancer element located at position -954 upstream from the initiation site abolished PKC-alpha-dependent activation of cyclin D1 expression. Deletion of the SP1 or CRE enhancer elements did not have any effect. A dominant negative mutant of c-Jun inhibited activation of the cyclin D1 promoter in a concentration-dependent manner, providing further evidence that AP-1 activity is required for activation of the cyclin D1 promoter by PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon. The constitutively active mutants of PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon also activated c-fos, c-jun, and cyclin E promoter activity. Furthermore, NIH3T3 cells that stably express the constitutively active mutants of PKC-alpha or PKC-epsilon displayed increased expression of endogenous cyclins D1 and E and faster growth rates. These results provide evidence that the activation of PKC-alpha or PKC-epsilon in mouse fibroblasts can play an important role in enhancing cell cycle progression and cell proliferation.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA-26056

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;36;34709-16

  • Centaurin-alpha(1) associates with and is phosphorylated by isoforms of protein kinase C.

    Zemlickova E, Dubois T, Kerai P, Clokie S, Cronshaw AD, Wakefield RI, Johannes FJ and Aitken A

    University of Edinburgh, School of Biomedical and Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Hugh Robson Building, George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9XD, UK.

    Centaurin-alpha(1) is a member of the family of ADP-ribosylation factors (ARF) GTPase activating proteins (GAPs), although ARF GAP activity has not yet been demonstrated. The human homologue, centaurin-alpha(1) functionally complements the ARF GAP activity of Gcs1 in yeast. Although Gcs1 is involved in the formation of actin filaments in vivo, the function of centaurin remains elusive. We have identified a number of novel centaurin-alpha(1) binding partners; including CKIalpha and nucleolin. In this report, we have focused on the interaction of centaurin-alpha(1) with PKC. All groups of PKC associate directly through their cysteine rich domains. Centaurin-alpha(1) is also a substrate for all PKC classes and we have identified the two sites of phosphorylation. This is the first report of a kinase that phosphorylates centaurin-alpha(1).

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2003;307;3;459-65

  • Protein kinase C epsilon dependence of the recovery from down-regulation of S1P1 G protein-coupled receptors of T lymphocytes.

    Graeler MH, Kong Y, Karliner JS and Goetzl EJ

    Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, California 94143-0711, USA.

    Sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) from mononuclear phagocytes and platelets signals T cells predominantly through S1P1 G protein-coupled receptors (Rs) to enhance survival, stimulate and suppress migration, and inhibit other immunologically relevant responses. Cellular S1P1 Rs and their signaling functions are rapidly down-regulated by S1P, through a protein kinase C (PKC)-independent mechanism, but characteristics of cell-surface re-expression of down-regulated S1P1 Rs have not been elucidated. T cell chemotactic responses (CT) to 10 and 100 nm S1P and inhibition of T cell chemotaxis to chemokines (CI) by 1 and 3 microm S1P were suppressed after 1 h of preincubation with 100 nm S1P, but recovered fully after 12-24 h of exposure to S1P. Late recovery of down-regulated CT and CI, but not early down-regulation, was suppressed by PKC and PKCepsilon-selective inhibitors and was absent in T cells from PKCepsilon-null mice. The same PKCepsilon inhibitors blocked S1P-evoked increases in T cell nuclear levels of c-Fos and phosphorylated c-Jun and JunD after 24 h, but not 1 h. A mixture of c-Fos plus c-Jun antisense oligonucleotides prevented late recovery of down-regulated CT and CI, without affecting S1P induction of down-regulation. Similarly, S1P-elicited threonine phosphorylation of S1P1 Rs was suppressed by a selective inhibitor of PKCepsilon after 24 h, but not 1 h. Biochemical requisites for recovery of down-regulated S1P1 Rs thus differ from those for S1P induction of down-regulation.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-31809, HL-68738

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2003;278;30;27737-41

  • Platelet P-selectin expression: requirement for protein kinase C, but not protein tyrosine kinase or phosphoinositide 3-kinase.

    Libersan D and Merhi Y

    Montreal Heart Institute and the University of Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

    P-selectin is translocated from the alpha-granules to the surface of activated platelets where it participates in thrombosis and inflammation. We investigated the signaling pathways involved in thrombin-induced human platelet P-selectin expression. Assessed by flow cytometry, inhibition of protein kinase C (PKC) with chelerythrine reduced P-selectin expression by 66%, platelet/neutrophil binding, GPIIb/IIIa activation and aggregation (p<0.05). Gö 6976, an inhibitor of the conventional PKCs (alpha and beta), did not alter P-selectin expression. However, rottlerin inhibited by 50% its expression (p<0.05), but only at doses that interfere with the novel (epsilon eta) and atypical (zeta) PKCs. Inhibition of protein tyrosine kinase (PTK) and phosphoinosi-tide 3-kinase (PI3-K) did not significantly affect P-selectin expression. In conclusion, thrombin-induced P-selectin expression is PKC-sensitive, but PTK and PI3-K-insensitive. The novel epsilon and eta and atypical zeta, but not the conventional alpha and beta and the novel delta PKCs, may be involved in this process.

    Thrombosis and haemostasis 2003;89;6;1016-23

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon interacts with and inhibits the permeability transition pore in cardiac mitochondria.

    Baines CP, Song CX, Zheng YT, Wang GW, Zhang J, Wang OL, Guo Y, Bolli R, Cardwell EM and Ping P

    Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Louisville, Louisville, Ky, USA. CPBaines@gmx.net

    Although functional coupling between protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) and mitochondria has been implicated in the genesis of cardioprotection, the signal transduction mechanisms that enable this link and the identities of the mitochondrial proteins modulated by PKCepsilon remain unknown. Based on recent evidence that the mitochondrial permeability transition pore may be involved in ischemia/reperfusion injury, we hypothesized that protein-protein interactions between PKCepsilon and mitochondrial pore components may serve as a signaling mechanism to modulate pore function and thus engender cardioprotection. Coimmunoprecipitation and GST-based affinity pull-down from mouse cardiac mitochondria revealed interaction of PKCepsilon with components of the pore, namely voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), adenine nucleotide translocase (ANT), and hexokinase II (HKII). VDAC1, ANT1, and HKII were present in the PKCepsilon complex at approximately 2%, approximately 0.2%, and approximately 1% of their total expression, respectively. Moreover, in vitro studies demonstrated that PKCepsilon can directly bind and phosphorylate VDAC1. Incubation of isolated cardiac mitochondria with recombinant PKCepsilon resulted in a significant inhibition of Ca2+-induced mitochondrial swelling, an index of pore opening. Furthermore, cardiac-specific expression of active PKCepsilon in mice, which is cardioprotective, greatly increased interaction of PKCepsilon with the pore components and inhibited Ca2+-induced pore opening. In contrast, cardiac expression of kinase-inactive PKCepsilon did not affect pore opening. Finally, administration of the pore opener atractyloside significantly attenuated the infarct-sparing effect of PKCepsilon transgenesis. Collectively, these data demonstrate that PKCepsilon forms physical interactions with components of the cardiac mitochondrial pore. This in turn inhibits the pathological function of the pore and contributes to PKCepsilon-induced cardioprotection.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-43151, HL-63901, R01 HL043151, R01 HL055757, R01 HL063901, R01 HL065431, R01 HL068088, R37 HL063901; PHS HHS: 55757, 65431, 68088

    Circulation research 2003;92;8;873-80

  • A PKC epsilon-ENH-channel complex specifically modulates N-type Ca2+ channels.

    Maeno-Hikichi Y, Chang S, Matsumura K, Lai M, Lin H, Nakagawa N, Kuroda S and Zhang JF

    Department of Pharmacology, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, 3620 Hamilton Walk, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.

    Multiple protein kinase C (PKC) isozymes are present in neurons, where they regulate a variety of cellular functions. Due to the lack of specific PKC isozyme inhibitors, it remains unknown how PKC acts on its selective target(s) and achieves its specific actions. Here we show that a PKC binding protein, enigma homolog (ENH), interacts specifically with both PKCepsilon and N-type Ca2+ channels, forming a PKCepsilon-ENH-Ca2+ channel macromolecular complex. Coexpression of ENH facilitated modulation of N-type Ca2+ channel activity by PKC. Disruption of the complex reduced the potentiation of the channel activity by PKC in neurons. Thus, ENH, by interacting specifically with both PKCepsilon and the N-type Ca2+ channel, targets a specific PKC to its substrate to form a functional signaling complex, which is the molecular mechanism for the specificity and efficiency of PKC signaling.

    Funded by: NINDS NIH HHS: NS39355

    Nature neuroscience 2003;6;5;468-75

  • Bryostatin-1 attenuates TNF-induced epithelial barrier dysfunction: role of novel PKC isozymes.

    Yoo J, Nichols A, Song JC, Mammen J, Calvo I, Worrell RT, Cuppoletti J, Matlin K and Matthews JB

    Department of Surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts 02215, USA.

    Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) increases epithelial permeability in many model systems. Protein kinase C (PKC) isozymes regulate epithelial barrier function and alter ligand-receptor interactions. We sought to define the impact of PKC on TNF-induced barrier dysfunction in T84 intestinal epithelia. TNF induced a dose- and time-dependent fall in transepithelial electrical resistance (TER) and an increase in [(3)H]mannitol flux. The TNF-induced fall in TER was not PKC mediated but was prevented by pretreatment with bryostatin-1, a PKC agonist. As demonstrated by a pattern of sensitivity to pharmacological inhibitors of PKC, this epithelial barrier preservation was mediated by novel PKC isozymes. Bryostatin-1 reduced TNF receptor (TNF-R1) surface availability, as demonstrated by radiolabeled TNF binding and cell surface biotinylation assays, and increased TNF-R1 receptor shedding. The pattern of sensitivity to isozyme-selective PKC inhibitors suggested that these effects were mediated by activation of PKC-epsilon. In addition, after bryostatin-1 treatment, PKC-delta and TNF-R1 became associated, as determined by mutual coimmunoprecipitation assay, which has been shown to lead to receptor desensitization in neutrophils. TNF-induced barrier dysfunction occurs independently of PKC, but selective modulation of novel PKC isozymes may regulate TNF-R1 signaling.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK-48010, DK-51630, T32-DK007754

    American journal of physiology. Gastrointestinal and liver physiology 2003;284;4;G703-12

  • PKCepsilon is a permissive link in integrin-dependent IFN-gamma signalling that facilitates JAK phosphorylation of STAT1.

    Ivaska J, Bosca L and Parker PJ

    Protein Phosphorylation Laboratory, Cancer Research UK London Research Institute, Lincoln's Inn Fields Laboratories, 44 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PX, UK.

    The critical dependence of receptor-triggered signals on integrin-mediated cell-substrate interactions represents a fundamental biological paradigm in health and disease. However, the molecular connections of these permissive inputs, which operate through integrin-matrix interactions, has remained largely obscure. Here we show that the serine-threonine kinase protein kinase C epsilon (PKCepsilon) functions as a signal integrator between cytokine and integrin signalling pathways. Integrins are shown to control PKCepsilon phosphorylation acutely by determining complex formation with protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) and the upstream kinase PDK1 (phosphoinositide-dependent kinase 1). The PP2A-induced loss of PKCepsilon function results in attenuated interferon gamma (INF-gamma)-induced phosphorylation of STAT1 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 1) downstream of Janus kinase 1/2 (JAK1/2). PKCepsilon function and the IFN-gamma response can be recovered by inhibition of PP2A if PDK1 is associated with PKCepsilon in this complex. More directly, a PP2A-resistant mutant of PKCepsilon is sufficient for restoration of the IFN-gamma response in suspension culture. Thus, PKCepsilon functions as a central point of integration through which integrin engagement exerts a permissive input on IFN-gamma signalling.

    Nature cell biology 2003;5;4;363-9

  • Protein kinase C-epsilon-null mice have decreased hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction.

    Littler CM, Morris KG, Fagan KA, McMurtry IF, Messing RO and Dempsey EC

    Cardiovascular Pulmonary Research Laboratory, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, Colorado 80262, USA.

    PKC contributes to regulation of pulmonary vascular reactivity in response to hypoxia. The role of individual PKC isozymes is less clear. We used a knockout (null, -/-) mouse to test the hypothesis that PKC-epsilon is important in acute hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction (HPV). We asked whether deletion of PKC-epsilon would decrease acute HPV in adult C57BL6xSV129 mice. In isolated, salt solution-perfused lung, reactivity to acute hypoxic challenges (0% and 3% O(2)) was compared with responses to angiotensin II (ANG II) and KCl. PKC-epsilon -/- mice had decreased HPV, whereas responses to ANG II and KCl were preserved. Inhibition of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) with nitro-l-arginine augmented HPV in PKC-epsilon +/+ but not -/- mice. Inhibition of Ca(2+)-gated K(+) channels (K(Ca)) with charybdotoxin and apamin did not enhance HPV in -/- mice relative to wild-type (+/+) controls. In contrast, the voltage-gated K(+) channel (K(V)) antagonist 4-aminopyridine increased the response of -/- mice beyond that of +/+ mice. This suggested that increased K(V) channel expression could contribute to blunted HPV in PKC-epsilon -/- mice. Therefore, expression of the O(2)-sensitive K(V) channel subunit Kv3.1b (100-kDa glycosylated form and 70-kDa core protein) was compared in whole lung and pulmonary artery smooth muscle cell (PASMC) lysates from +/+ and -/- mice. A subtle increase in Kv3.1b was detected in -/- vs. +/+ whole lung lysates. A much greater rise in Kv3.1b expression was found in -/- vs. +/+ PASMC. Thus deletion of PKC-epsilon blunts murine HPV. The decreased response could not be attributed to a general loss in vasoreactivity or derangements in NOS or K(Ca) channel activity. Instead, the absence of PKC-epsilon allows increased expression of K(V) channels (like Kv3.1b) to occur in PASMC, which likely contributes to decreased HPV.

    Funded by: OAPP OPHS HHS: PPG-HL-14985

    American journal of physiology. Heart and circulatory physiology 2003;284;4;H1321-31

  • Different regulation of PKC isoenzymes and MAPK by PSK and IL-2 in the proliferative and cytotoxic activities of the NKL human natural killer cell line.

    García-Lora A, Martinez M, Pedrinaci S and Garrido F

    Servicio de Análisis Clínicos e Inmunología, Hospital Universitario Virgen de las Nieves, Universidad de Granada, Avda de las Fuerzas Armadas 2, 18014 Granada, Spain.

    The activation of natural killer (NK) cells and induction of cytotoxicity are complex processes whose molecular mechanisms have not been clearly elucidated. Stimulation of the NKL human NK cell line with interleukin-2 (IL-2) or protein-bound polysaccharide K (PSK) leads to sustained growth and cytolytic activity in comparison to unstimulated NKL cells. Our previous results shown that IL-2 and PSK regulate different nuclear transcription factors in NKL cells, and that the signal transduction pathway used by these inducers is different. To determine the molecular basis for the different action of IL-2 and PSK, we investigated the upstream effects generated in human NKL cells by IL-2 and PSK on protein kinase C (PKC) isoenzymes and mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK). Here we report the profile of unstimulated NKL cells as: PKCbeta>PKCalpha>PKCdelta =PKCepsilon. The PKCeta form was not expressed. The effects of PSK and IL-2 on these isoenzymes were different. IL-2 increased the expression of PKCalpha, PKCdelta and PKCepsilon, whereas PSK decreased the expression of PKCalpha, and also increased PKCdelta and PKCepsilon to higher levels than did IL-2. In MAPK expression we found that unstimulated NKL cells have the following profile: ERK2>ERK6>p38gamma>p38beta>ERK1. ERK3, ERK3 rel, ERK5/ERK4 and p38delta were not expressed. IL-2 decreased the expression of ERK2, whereas PSK did not, and both agents increased the expression of ERK3. These results shown that PSK and IL-2 produce different variations in PKC isoenzymes and MAPK in NKL cells.

    Cancer immunology, immunotherapy : CII 2003;52;1;59-64

  • Protein kinase C(mu) regulation of the JNK pathway is triggered via phosphoinositide-dependent kinase 1 and protein kinase C(epsilon).

    Brändlin I, Eiseler T, Salowsky R and Johannes FJ

    Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering, Nobelstrabetae 12, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany.

    The protein kinase C (PKC)-related enzyme PKC(mu)/PKD (protein kinase D) is activated by activation loop phosphorylation through PKC(eta). Here we demonstrate that PKC(mu) is activated by the direct phosphorylation of PKC(epsilon). PKC(mu) colocalizes with PKC(epsilon) in HEK293 and MCF7 cells as shown by confocal immunofluorescence analyses. PDK1, known as the upstream kinase for several PKC isozymes, associates intracellularly with PKC(epsilon) and PKC(eta). PKC(eta) is phosphorylated by PDK1 in vitro, leading to kinase activation as similarly reported for PKC(epsilon) activation by PDK1. Coexpression of PDK1, PKC(epsilon) and PKC(mu) in HEK293 cells results in PKC(mu) activation. In contrast, the coexpression of PDK1 and PKC(eta) with PKC(mu) does not activate PKC(eta) or consequently PKC(mu). PDK1/PKC(epsilon)-triggered activation of PKC(mu) inhibits JNK, a downstream effector of PKC(mu), whereas upon transient expression of PDK1, PKC(eta), and PKC(mu), JNK is not affected. These data implicate PKC(epsilon) as the biologically important upstream kinase for PKC(mu) in HEK293 cells, regulating downstream effectors. Our results further indicate a PDK1/PKC(eta)/PKC(mu) controlled negative regulation of PKC(eta) kinase activity. In this study, we show that differentially activated kinase cascades involving PDK1 and novel PKC isotypes are responsible for the regulation of PKC(mu) activity and consequently inhibit the JNK pathway.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;47;45451-7

  • Signaling pathways triggered by HIV-1 Tat in human monocytes to induce TNF-alpha.

    Bennasser Y, Badou A, Tkaczuk J and Bahraoui E

    Laboratoire d'Immuno-Virologie, EA 3038, Université Paul Sabatier 118, route de Narbonne, 31062, Toulouse Cedex, France.

    In this study we investigated the signaling pathways triggered by Tat in human monocyte to induce TNF-alpha. In monocytes, the calcium, the PKA, and the PKC pathways are highly implicated in the expression of cytokine genes. Thus, these three major signaling pathways were investigated. Our data show that (i) PKC and calcium pathways are required for TNF-alpha production, whereas the PKA pathway seems to be not involved; (ii) downstream from PKC, activation of NFkappaB is essential while ERK1/2 MAP kinases, even though activated by Tat, are not directly involved in the pathway signaling leading to TNF-alpha production.

    Virology 2002;303;1;174-80

  • Proteolytic activation of protein kinase C-epsilon by caspase-mediated processing and transduction of antiapoptotic signals.

    Basu A, Lu D, Sun B, Moor AN, Akkaraju GR and Huang J

    Department of Molecular Biology and Immunology, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth 76107, USA. abasu@hsc.unt.edu

    Several novel protein kinase C (PKC) isozymes have been identified as substrates for caspase-3. We have previously shown that novel PKCepsilon is cleaved during apoptosis in MCF-7 cells that lack any functional caspase-3. In the present study, we show that in vitro-translated PKCepsilon is processed by human recombinant caspase-3, -7, and -9. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF) triggered processing of PKCepsilon to a 43-kDa carboxyl-terminal fragment, and cell-permeable caspase inhibitors prevented TNF-induced processing of PKCepsilon in MCF-7 cells. PKCepsilon was cleaved primarily at the SSPD downward arrow G site to generate two fragments with an approximate molecular mass of 43 kDa. It was also cleaved at the DDVD downward arrow C site to generate two fragments with molecular masses of 52 and 35 kDa. Treatment of MCF-7 cells with TNF resulted in the activation of PKCepsilon, and mutation at the SSPD downward arrow G (D383A) site inhibited proteolytic activation of PKCepsilon. Overexpression of wild-type but not dominant-negative PKCepsilon in MCF-7 cells delayed TNF-induced apoptosis, and mutation at the D383A site prevented antiapoptotic activity of PKCepsilon. These results suggest that cleavage of PKCepsilon by caspase-7 at the SSPD downward arrow G site results in the activation of PKCepsilon. Furthermore, activation of PKCepsilon was associated with its antiapoptotic function.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA71727, CA85682

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;44;41850-6

  • Critical role of protein kinase C epsilon for lipopolysaccharide-induced IL-12 synthesis in monocyte-derived dendritic cells.

    Aksoy E, Amraoui Z, Goriely S, Goldman M and Willems F

    Laboratory of Experimental Immunology, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium.

    In the present study we have investigated the potential involvement of protein kinase C (PKC) in the maturation of human dendritic cells (DC) by bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS). LPS stimulation of DC derived from human monocytes resulted in PKC phosphorylation. Inhibition of PKC activation using bisindolylmaleimide (Bis), a pan-PKC inhibitor, was associated with a dose-dependent decrease of LPS-induced IL-12 production. In contrast, up-regulation of MHC class II, CD80 and CD86 was not altered. Consistent with the diminished IL-12 synthesis, DC stimulated with LPS in presence of Bis were deficient in the induction of IFN-gamma production by allogeneic CD4+ T cells. Furthermore, we found that PKC inhibition impaired LPS-induced I kappa B-alpha degradation and subsequent nuclear factor (NF)-kappa B activation in DC. LPS resulted in the phosphorylation of conventional alpha/beta and novel epsilon PKC isoforms in DC. Inhibition of LPS-induced PKC activity using pseudosubstrate peptides specific for PKC isoforms established that PKC epsilon but not PKC alpha/beta was involved in the production of IL-12 and TNF-alpha. Overall, these data provide evidence that PKC inhibition impairs LPS signaling in DC and identify PKC epsilon as a potential target for the inhibition of Toll-like receptor-4-mediated, IL-12-dependent Th1 type responses.

    European journal of immunology 2002;32;11;3040-9

  • Inhibition of apical Cl-/OH- exchange activity in Caco-2 cells by phorbol esters is mediated by PKCepsilon.

    Saksena S, Gill RK, Syed IA, Tyagi S, Alrefai WA, Ramaswamy K and Dudeja PK

    Section of Digestive and Liver Diseases, Department of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago and West Side Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois 60612, USA.

    The present studies were undertaken to examine the possible regulation of apical membrane Cl-/OH- exchanger in Caco-2 cells by protein kinase C (PKC). The effect of the phorbol ester phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), an in vitro PKC agonist, on OH- gradient-driven 4,4'-diisothiocyanostilbene-2,2'-disulfonic acid (DIDS)-sensitive 36Cl uptake in Caco-2 cells was assessed. The results demonstrated that PMA decreased apical Cl-/OH- exchanger activity via phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-kinase)-mediated activation of PKCepsilon. The data consistent with these conclusions are as follows: 1) short-term treatment of cells for 1-2 h with PMA (100 nM) significantly decreased Cl-/OH- exchange activity compared with control (4alpha-PMA); 2) pretreatment of cells with specific PKC inhibitors chelerythrine chloride, calphostin C, and GF-109203X completely blocked the inhibition of Cl-/OH- exchange activity by PMA; 3) specific inhibitors for PKCepsilon (Ro-318220) but not PKCalpha (Go-6976) significantly blocked the PMA-mediated inhibition; 4) specific PI3-kinase inhibitors wortmannin and LY-294002 significantly attenuated the inhibitory effect of PMA; and 5) PI3-kinase activators IRS-1 peptide and phosphatidylinositol 3,4,5-trisphosphate [PI(3,4,5)P(3)] mimicked the effects of PMA. These findings provide the first evidence for PKCepsilon-mediated inhibition of Cl-/OH- exchange activity in Caco-2 cells and indicate the involvement of the PI3-kinase-mediated pathways in the regulation of Cl- absorption in intestinal epithelial cells.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK-09930, DK-33349, DK-54016

    American journal of physiology. Cell physiology 2002;283;5;C1492-500

  • Opposing effects of PKCalpha and PKCepsilon on basolateral membrane dynamics in intestinal epithelia.

    Song JC, Rangachari PK and Matthews JB

    Department of Surgery, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio 45267, USA.

    PKC is a critical effector of plasma membrane dynamics, yet the mechanism and isoform-specific role of PKC are poorly understood. We recently showed that the phorbol ester PMA (100 nM) induces prompt activation of the novel isoform PKCepsilon followed by late activation of the conventional isoform PKCalpha in T84 intestinal epithelia. PMA also elicited biphasic effects on endocytosis, characterized by an initial stimulatory phase followed by an inhibitory phase. Activation of PKCepsilon was shown to be responsible for stimulation of basolateral endocytosis, but the role of PKCalpha was not defined. Here, we used detailed time-course analysis as well as selective activators and inhibitors of PKC isoforms to infer the action of PKCalpha on basolateral endocytosis. Inhibition of PKC by the selective conventional PKC inhibitor Gö-6976 (5 microM) completely blocked the late inhibitory phase and markedly prolonged the stimulatory phase of endocytosis measured by FITC-dextran uptake. The PKCepsilon-selective agonist carbachol (100 microM) induced prolonged stimulation of endocytosis devoid of an inhibitory phase. Actin disassembly caused by PMA was completely blocked by Gö-6850 but not by Gö-6976, implicating PKCepsilon as the key isoform responsible for actin disruption. The Ca2+ agonist thapsigargin (5 microM) induced early activation of PKC when added simultaneously with PMA. This early activation of PKCalpha blocked the ability of PMA to remodel basolateral F-actin and abolished the stimulatory phase of basolateral endocytosis. Activation of PKCalpha stabilizes F-actin and thereby opposes the effect of PKCepsilon on membrane remodeling in T84 cells.

    American journal of physiology. Cell physiology 2002;283;5;C1548-56

  • Regulation of caveolin-1 expression and secretion by a protein kinase cepsilon signaling pathway in human prostate cancer cells.

    Wu D and Terrian DM

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858, USA. wud@mail.ecu.edu

    Caveolin-1, androgen receptor, c-Myc, and protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) proteins are overrepresented in most advanced prostate cancer tumors. Previously, we demonstrated that PKCepsilon has the capacity to enhance the expression of both caveolin-1 and c-Myc in cultured prostate cancer cells and is sufficient to induce the growth of androgen-independent tumors. In this study, we have uncovered further evidence of a functional interplay among these proteins in the CWR22 model of human prostate cancer. The results demonstrated that PKCepsilon expression was naturally up-regulated in recurrent CWR22 tumors and that this oncoprotein was required to sustain the androgen-independent proliferation of CWR-R1 cells in culture. Gene transfer experiments demonstrated that PKCepsilon had the potential to augment the expression and secretion of a biologically active caveolin-1 protein that supports the growth of the CWR-R1 cell line. Antisense and pharmacological experiments provided additional evidence that the sequential activation of PKCepsilon, mitogen-activated protein kinases, c-Myc, and androgen receptor signaling drove the downstream expression of caveolin-1 in CWR-R1 cells. Finally, we demonstrate that mitogen-activated protein kinases were required downstream of PKCepsilon to derepress the transcriptional elongation of the c-myc gene. Our findings support the hypothesis that PKCepsilon may advance the recurrence of human prostate cancer by promoting the expression of several important downstream effectors of disease progression.

    Funded by: NIEHS NIH HHS: ES 8397

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;43;40449-55

  • Protein kinase C-epsilon promotes survival of lung cancer cells by suppressing apoptosis through dysregulation of the mitochondrial caspase pathway.

    Ding L, Wang H, Lang W and Xiao L

    University of Florida Shands Cancer Center and Department of Anatomy & Cell Biology, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32610, USA.

    The serine/threonine protein kinase C (PKC) has been implicated in the regulation of drug resistance and cell survival in many types of cancer cells. However, the one or more precise mechanisms remain elusive. In this study, we have identified and determined the mechanism by which PKC-epsilon, a novel PKC isoform, modulates drug resistance in lung cancer cells. Western blot analysis demonstrates that expression of PKC-epsilon, but not other PKC isoforms, is associated with the chemo-resistant phenotype of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines. Northern blotting and nuclear run-on transcription analysis further reveals that the failure of expression of PKC-epsilon in the chemo-sensitive phenotype of small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cells results from transcriptional inactivation of the gene. Importantly, forced expression of PKC-epsilon in NCI-H82 human SCLC cells confers a significant resistance to the chemotherapeutic drugs, etoposide and doxorubicin. Resistance is characterized by a significant reduction in apoptosis in PKC-epsilon-expressing cells. Treatment of NCI-H82 cells with etoposide induces a series of time-dependent events, including the release of cytochrome c from the mitochondria to the cytosol, activation of caspase-9 and caspase-3, and cleavage of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP). All of these events are blocked by PKC-epsilon expression. Furthermore, caspase-specific inhibitors, z-VAD-fmk and z-DEVD-fmk, significantly attenuate the accumulation of sub-G(1) population and block the PARP cleavage in response to etoposide. These results suggest that PKC-epsilon prevents cells from undergoing apoptosis through inhibition of the mitochondrial-dependent caspase activation, thereby leading to cell survival. Finally, down-regulation of PKC-epsilon expression by the antisense cDNA in NSCLC cells results in increased sensitivity to etoposide. Taken together, our findings suggest an important role for PKC-epsilon in regulating survival of lung cancer cells.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01-CA88815

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;38;35305-13

  • Protein kinase C-epsilon mediates bradykinin-induced cyclooxygenase-2 expression in human airway smooth muscle cells.

    Pang L, Nie M, Corbett L, Donnelly R, Gray S and Knox AJ

    Division of Respiratory Medicine, City Hospital, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG5 1PB, UK. linhua.pang@nottingham.ac.uk

    We previously reported that proinflammatory mediator bradykinin (BK) induces cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 expression in human airway smooth muscle (HASM), but the mechanism is unknown in any biological system. Here, we studied the role of specific protein kinase C (PKC) isozyme(s) in COX-2 expression. Among the eight PKC isozymes present in HASM cells, the Ca2+-independent PKC-delta and -epsilon and the Ca2+-dependent PKC-alpha and -betaI were translocated to the nucleus upon BK stimulation. BK-induced COX-2 expression and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) accumulation were mimicked by the direct PKC activator phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) and inhibited by the broad spectrum PKC inhibitor bisindolylmaleimide I. However, the selective Ca2+-dependent PKC isozyme inhibitor Go 6976 had no effect. Furthermore, the membrane-permeable calcium chelator BAPTA-AM had no effect on BK-induced COX-2 expression and COX activity despite its inhibition of PGE2 accumulation, suggesting the involvement of Ca2+-independent PKC isozymes. Rottlerin, a PKC-delta inhibitor, also had no effect, likely implicating PKC-epsilon. BK-stimulated transcriptional activation of a COX-2 promoter reporter construct was enhanced by overexpression of wild-type PKC-epsilon and abolished by a dominant negative PKC-epsilon, but it was not affected by wild-type or dominant negative PKC-alpha or -delta. Collectively, our results demonstrate that PKC-e mediates BK-induced COX-2 expression in HASM cells.

    FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology 2002;16;11;1435-7

  • Induction of apoptosis by protein kinase C delta is independent of its kinase activity.

    Goerke A, Sakai N, Gutjahr E, Schlapkohl WA, Mushinski JF, Haller H, Kolch W, Saito N and Mischak H

    Medical School Hanover, Department of Nephrology, Carl-Neuberg-Str. 1, 30625 Hannover, Germany.

    Protein kinase C, a multigene family of phospholipid-dependent and diacylglycerol-activated Ser/Thr protein kinases, is a key component in many signal transduction pathways. The kinase activity was thought to be essential for a plethora of biological processes attributed to these enzymes. Here we show that at least one protein kinase C function, the induction of apoptosis by protein kinase C delta, is independent of the kinase activity. Stimulation of green fluorescent protein-protein kinase C delta fusion protein with phorbol ester or diacylglycerol led to its redistribution within seconds after the stimulus. Membrane blebbing, an early hallmark of apoptosis, was visible as early as 20 min after stimulation, and nuclear condensation was visible after 3-5 h. Apoptosis could be inhibited by expression of Bcl-2 but not by specific protein kinase C inhibitors. In addition, a kinase-negative mutant of protein kinase C delta also induced apoptosis to the same extent as the wild type enzyme. Apoptosis was confined to the protein kinase C delta-overexpressing cells. Stimulation of overexpressed protein kinase C epsilon did not result in increased apoptosis. Our results indicate that distinct protein kinase C isozymes induce apoptosis in vascular smooth muscle cells. More importantly, they show that some protein kinase C effector functions are independent of the catalytic activity.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;35;32054-62

  • PC phosphorylation increases the ability of AFAP-110 to cross-link actin filaments.

    Qian Y, Baisden JM, Cherezova L, Summy JM, Guappone-Koay A, Shi X, Mast T, Pustula J, Zot HG, Mazloum N, Lee MY and Flynn DC

    The Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center and the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, West Virginia University, Morgantown, West Virginia 26506-9300, USA.

    The actin filament-associated protein and Src-binding partner, AFAP-110, is an adaptor protein that links signaling molecules to actin filaments. AFAP-110 binds actin filaments directly and multimerizes through a leucine zipper motif. Cellular signals downstream of Src(527F) can regulate multimerization. Here, we determined recombinant AFAP-110 (rAFAP-110)-bound actin filaments cooperatively, through a lateral association. We demonstrate rAFAP-110 has the capability to cross-link actin filaments, and this ability is dependent on the integrity of the carboxy terminal actin binding domain. Deletion of the leucine zipper motif or PKC phosphorylation affected AFAP-110's conformation, which correlated with changes in multimerization and increased the capability of rAFAP-110 to cross-link actin filaments. AFAP-110 is both a substrate and binding partner of PKC. On PKC activation, stress filament organization is lost, motility structures form, and AFAP-110 colocalizes strongly with motility structures. Expression of a deletion mutant of AFAP-110 that is unable to bind PKC blocked the effect of PMA on actin filaments. We hypothesize that upon PKC activation, AFAP-110 can be cooperatively recruited to newly forming actin filaments, like those that exist in cell motility structures, and that PKC phosphorylation effects a conformational change that may enable AFAP-110 to promote actin filament cross-linking at the cell membrane.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA60731, R01 CA060731

    Molecular biology of the cell 2002;13;7;2311-22

  • Selective association of protein kinase C with 14-3-3 zeta in neuronally differentiated PC12 Cells. Stimulatory and inhibitory effect of 14-3-3 zeta in vivo.

    Gannon-Murakami L and Murakami K

    Department of Biology, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont 05405, USA.

    The 14-3-3 protein is a family of highly conserved acidic proteins found in a wide range of eukaryotes from yeast to mammals. 14-3-3 acts as an adapter protein and interacts with signaling molecules including protein kinase C (PKC). Although 14-3-3 zeta was originally characterized as an endogenous PKC inhibitor, it was reported to activate PKC in vitro, but the in vivo regulation of PKC by 14-3-3 is still not well understood. To examine the regulation of PKC by 14-3-3 in the cell, we have generated a sub-cell line, PC12-B3, that stably expresses FLAG epitope-tagged 14-3-3 zeta isoform in PC12 cells. Here we show that PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon become associated with 14-3-3 zeta when the cells are neuronally differentiated by nerve growth factor. We found that the immunoprecipitate by anti-FLAG antibody contains constitutive and autonomous Ca(2+)-independent non-classical PKC activity. In contrast, the FLAG immunoprecipitate has no Ca(2+)-dependent classical PKC activity despite the fact that PKC-alpha is present in the FLAG immunoprecipitate from differentiated PC12-B3 cells. Our results show that the association with 14-3-3 zeta has distinct effects on classical PKC and non-classical PKC activity.

    Funded by: NIMH NIH HHS: MH48973

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;26;23116-22

  • Protein kinase C epsilon-dependent regulation of cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator involves binding to a receptor for activated C kinase (RACK1) and RACK1 binding to Na+/H+ exchange regulatory factor.

    Liedtke CM, Yun CH, Kyle N and Wang D

    Warren Alan Bernbaum, M.D. Center for Cystic Fibrosis Research, Department of Pediatrics, Rainbow Babies and Children Hospital and Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio 44106-4948, USA. cxl7@po.cwru.edu

    Protein kinase C (PKC) regulation of cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator (CFTR) chloride function has been demonstrated in several cell lines, including Calu-3 cells that express native, wild-type CFTR. We demonstrated previously that PKC epsilon was required for cAMP-dependent CFTR function. The goal of this study was to determine whether PKC epsilon interacts directly with CFTR. Using overlay assay, immunoprecipitation, pulldown and binding assays, we show that PKC epsilon does not bind to CFTR, but does bind to a receptor for activated C kinase (RACK1), a 37-kDa scaffold protein, and that RACK1 binds to Na(+)/H(+) exchange regulatory factor (NHERF1), a binding partner of CFTR. In vitro binding assays demonstrate dose-dependent binding of PKC epsilon to RACK1 which is inhibited by an 8-amino acid peptide based on the sequence of the sixth Trp-Asp repeat in RACK1 or by an 8-amino acid sequence in the V1 region of PKC epsilon, epsilon V1-2. A 4-amino acid sequence INAL (70-73) expressed in CFTR shares 50% homology to the RACK1 inhibitory peptide, but it does not bind PKC epsilon. NHERF1 and RACK1 bind in a dose-dependent manner. Immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy of RACK1 and CFTR revealed colocalization of the proteins to the apical and lateral regions of Calu-3 cells. The results indicate the RACK1 binds PKC epsilon and NHERF1, thus serving as a scaffold protein to anchor the enzyme in proximity to CFTR.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL58598, HL67190; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK27651, DK44484

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;25;22925-33

  • The anchoring protein RACK1 links protein kinase Cepsilon to integrin beta chains. Requirements for adhesion and motility.

    Besson A, Wilson TL and Yong VW

    Department of Oncology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta T2N 4N1, Canada.

    Integrin affinity is modulated by intracellular signaling cascades, in a process known as "inside-out" signaling, leading to changes in cell adhesion and motility. Protein kinase C (PKC) plays a critical role in integrin-mediated events; however, the mechanism that links PKC to integrins remains unclear. Here, we report that PKCepsilon positively regulates integrin-dependent adhesion, spreading, and motility of human glioma cells. PKCepsilon activation was associated with increased focal adhesion and lamellipodia formation as well as clustering of select integrins, and it is required for phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate-induced adhesion and motility. We provide novel evidence that the scaffolding protein RACK1 mediates the interaction between integrin beta chain and activated PKCepsilon. Both depletion of RACK1 by antisense strategy and overexpression of a truncated form of RACK1 which lacks the integrin binding region resulted in decreased PKCepsilon-induced adhesion and migration, suggesting that RACK1 links PKCepsilon to integrin beta chains. Altogether, these results provide a novel mechanistic link between PKC activation and integrin-mediated adhesion and motility.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;24;22073-84

  • The use of fluorescent phorbol esters in studies of protein kinase C-membrane interactions.

    Slater SJ, Ho C and Stubbs CD

    Department of Anatomy, Pathology and Cell Biology, Thomas Jefferson University, Room 271 JAH, 1020 Locust St., Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA.

    The family of protein kinase C (PKC) isozymes belongs to a growing class of proteins that become active by associating with membranes containing anionic phospholipids, such as phosphatidylserine. Depending on the particular PKC isoform, this process is mediated by Ca(2+)-binding to a C2 domain and interaction of activators such as 1,2-diacyl-sn-glycerol or phorbol esters with tandem C1 domains. This cooperation between the C1 and C2 domains in inducing the association of PKC with lipid membranes provides the energy for a conformational change that consists of the release of a pseudosubstrate sequence from the active site, culminating in activation. Thus, the properties of the interactions of the C1 and C2 domains with membranes, both as isolated domains, and as modules in the full length PKC isoforms, have been the subject of intense scrutiny. Here, we review the findings of studies in which fluorescent phorbol esters have been utilized to probe the properties of the C1 domains of PKC with respect to the interaction with activators, the subsequent interaction with membranes, and the role of the activating conformational change that leads to activation.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: AA07186, AA07215, AA07465, AA08022

    Chemistry and physics of lipids 2002;116;1-2;75-91

  • Critical role of diacylglycerol- and phospholipid-regulated protein kinase C epsilon in induction of low-density lipoprotein receptor transcription in response to depletion of cholesterol.

    Mehta KD, Radominska-Pandya A, Kapoor GS, Dave B and Atkins BA

    Department of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, Ohio 43210, USA. mehta.80@osu.edu

    Induction of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor transcription in response to depletion of cellular sterols in animal cells is well established. The intracellular signal or signals involved in regulating this process, however, remain unknown. Using a specific inhibitor of protein kinase C (PKC), calphostin C, we show the requirement of this kinase in the induction process in human hepatoma HepG2 cells. Overexpression of PKC epsilon, but not PKC alpha, -gamma, -delta, or -zeta was found to dramatically induce (approximately 18-fold) LDL receptor promoter activity. Interestingly, PKC epsilon-mediated induction was found to be sterol resistant. To further establish that PKC epsilon is involved in the sterol regulation of LDL receptor gene transcription, endogenous PKC epsilon was specifically inhibited by transfection with antisense PKC epsilon phosphorothionate oligonucleotides. Antisense treatment decreased endogenous PKC epsilon protein levels and completely blocked induction of LDL receptor transcription following sterol depletion. PKC epsilon-induced LDL receptor transcription is independent of the extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (p42/44(MAPK)) cascade, because the MEK-1/2 inhibitor, PD98059 did not inhibit, even though it blocked p42/44(MAPK) activation. Finally, photoaffinity labeling studies showed an isoform-specific interaction between PKC epsilon and sterols, suggesting that sterols may directly modulate its function by hampering binding of activators. This was confirmed by PKC activity assays. Altogether, these results define a novel signaling pathway leading to induction of LDL receptor transcription following sterol depletion, and a model is proposed to account for a new function for PKC epsilon as part of a sterol-sensitive signal transduction pathway in hepatic cells.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: R01 HL079091, R01 HL67760; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK56226

    Molecular and cellular biology 2002;22;11;3783-93

  • PKC epsilon is associated with myosin IIA and actin in fibroblasts.

    England K, Ashford D, Kidd D and Rumsby M

    Department of Biology, University of York, York YO10 5DD, UK. k.england@ucc.ie

    Proteins coimmunoprecipitating with protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon in fibroblasts were identified through matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI TOF m/s). This method identified myosin IIA in PKC epsilon immunoprecipitates, as well as known PKC epsilon binding proteins, actin, beta'Cop and cytokeratin. Myosin is not a substrate for PKC epsilon. Immunofluorescence analysis showed that PKC epsilon is colocalised with actin and myosin in actomyosin stress fibers in fibroblasts. Inhibitors of PKC and myosin ATPase activity, as well as microfilament-disrupting drugs, all inhibited spreading of fibroblasts after passage, suggesting a role for a PKC epsilon-actin-myosin complex in cell spreading.

    Cellular signalling 2002;14;6;529-36

  • Importance of C1B domain for lipid messenger-induced targeting of protein kinase C.

    Kashiwagi K, Shirai Y, Kuriyama M, Sakai N and Saito N

    Laboratory of Molecular Pharmacology, Biosignal Research Center, Kobe University, Kobe 657-8501, Japan.

    The molecular mechanisms by which arachidonic acid (AA) and ceramide elicit translocation of protein kinase C (PKC) were investigated. Ceramide translocated epsilonPKC from the cytoplasm to the Golgi complex, but with a mechanism distinct from that utilized by AA. Using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching, we showed that, upon treatment with AA, epsilonPKC was tightly associated with the Golgi complex; ceramide elicited an accumulation of epsilonPKC which was exchangeable with the cytoplasm. Stimulation with ceramide after AA converted the AA-induced Golgi complex staining to one elicited by ceramide alone; AA had no effect on the ceramide-stimulated localization. Using point mutants and deletions of epsilonPKC, we determined that the epsilonC1B domain was responsible for the ceramide- and AA-induced translocation. Switch chimeras, containing the C1B from epsilonPKC in the context of deltaPKC (delta(epsilonC1B)) and vice versa (epsilon(deltaC1B)), were generated and tested for their translocation in response to ceramide and AA. delta(epsilonC1B) translocated upon treatment with both ceramide and AA; epsilon(deltaC1B) responded only to ceramide. Thus, through the C1B domain, AA and ceramide induce different patterns of epsilonPKC translocation and the C1B domain defines the subtype specific sensitivity of PKCs to lipid second messengers.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;20;18037-45

  • Regulation of novel protein kinase C epsilon by phosphorylation.

    Cenni V, Döppler H, Sonnenburg ED, Maraldi N, Newton AC and Toker A

    Boston Biomedical Research Institute, Watertown, MA 02472, USA.

    The activity and intracellular localization of protein kinase C (PKC) family members are controlled by phosphorylation at three highly conserved sites in the catalytic kinase domain. In the case of the novel PKCepsilon isoform, these are Thr(566) in the activation loop, Thr(710) in the turn motif and Ser(729) in the C-terminal hydrophobic motif. In the present study, we analysed the contribution of the phosphoinositide-dependent kinase 1 (PDK-1) and PKCepsilon kinase activity in controlling the phosphorylation of Thr(566) and Ser(729). In NIH 3T3 fibroblasts, PKCepsilon migrated as a single band, and stimulation with platelet-derived growth factor resulted in the appearance of a second band with a slower electrophoretic mobility, concomitant with an increase in phosphorylation of Thr(566) and Ser(729). Cells transfected with an active PDK-1 allele also resulted in increased PKCepsilon Thr(566) and Ser(729) phosphorylation, whereas an active myristoylated PKCepsilon mutant was constitutively phosphorylated at these sites. Protein kinase-inactive mutants of PKCepsilon were not phosphorylated at Ser(729) in cells, and phosphorylation of this site leads to dephosphorylation of the activation-loop Thr(566), an effect which can be reversed with either okadaic acid or co-transfection with active PDK-1. In vitro, PDK-1 catalysed the phosphorylation of purified PKCepsilon in the presence of mixed micelles containing either diacylglycerol or PtdIns(3,4,5)P(3), concomitant with an increase in Ser(729) phosphorylation. These studies reveal that the mechanism of phosphorylation of a novel PKC is the same as that for conventional PKCs: PDK-1 phosphorylation of the activation loop triggers autophosphorylation of the hydrophobic motif. However, the regulation of this phosphorylation is different for novel and conventional PKCs. Specifically, the phosphorylation of novel PKCs is regulated rather than constitutive.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA75134; NIGMS NIH HHS: GM43154

    The Biochemical journal 2002;363;Pt 3;537-45

  • Isozyme-specific abnormalities of PKC in thyroid cancer: evidence for post-transcriptional changes in PKC epsilon.

    Knauf JA, Ward LS, Nikiforov YE, Nikiforova M, Puxeddu E, Medvedovic M, Liron T, Mochly-Rosen D and Fagin JA

    Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio 45267, USA.

    PKC isozymes are the major binding proteins for tumor-promoting phorbol esters, and PKC activity is abnormal in a number of different human cancers. Less is known about putative structural and functional changes of specific PKC isozymes in human neoplasms. A single-point mutation of PKCalpha at position 881 of the coding sequence has been observed in human pituitary adenomas and up to 50% of thyroid follicular neoplasms, and a rearrangement of PKCepsilon was reported in a thyroid follicular carcinoma cell line, suggesting that these signaling proteins may play a role in thyroid tumorigenesis. To explore this possibility, we examined thyroid neoplasms for mutations and changes in expression levels of PKCepsilon or alpha. None of the 57 follicular adenomas, 26 papillary carcinomas (PCs), 7 follicular carcinomas, or the anaplastic carcinoma harbored the PKCalpha 881A>G mutation. Moreover, none of 15 PCs, 10 follicular adenomas, or 6 follicular carcinomas showed evidence of mutations of PKCepsilon. However, 8 of 11 PCs had major isozyme-specific reductions of the PKCepsilon protein, which occurred through either translational or posttranslational mechanisms. These data indicate that post-transcriptional changes in PKCepsilon are highly prevalent in thyroid tumors and may play a significant role in their development.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA50706, CA72597; NCRR NIH HHS: M01-RR08084; NIDDK NIH HHS: K01DK02781

    The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism 2002;87;5;2150-9

  • Nitric oxide (NO) induces nitration of protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon ), facilitating PKCepsilon translocation via enhanced PKCepsilon -RACK2 interactions: a novel mechanism of no-triggered activation of PKCepsilon.

    Balafanova Z, Bolli R, Zhang J, Zheng Y, Pass JM, Bhatnagar A, Tang XL, Wang O, Cardwell E and Ping P

    Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky 40202, USA.

    Activation of protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon by nitric oxide (NO) has been implicated in the development of cardioprotection. However, the cellular mechanisms underlying the activation of PKCepsilon by NO remain largely unknown. Nitration of protein tyrosine residues has been shown to alter functions of a variety of proteins, and NO-derived peroxynitrite is known as a strong nitrating agent. In this investigation, we demonstrate that NO donors promote translocation and activation of PKCepsilon in an NO- and peroxynitrite-dependent fashion. NO induces peroxynitrite-mediated tyrosine nitration of PKCepsilon in rabbit cardiomyocytes in vitro, and nitrotyrosine residues were also detected on PKCepsilon in vivo in the rabbit myocardium preconditioned with NO donors. Furthermore, coimmunoprecipitation of PKCepsilon and its receptor for activated C kinase, RACK2, illustrated a peroxynitrite-dependent increase in PKCepsilon-RACK2 interactions in NO donor-treated cardiomyocytes. Moreover, using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay-based protein-protein interaction assay, PKCepsilon proteins treated with the peroxynitrite donor SIN-1 exhibited enhanced binding to RACK2 in an acellular environment. Our data demonstrate that post-translational modification of PKCepsilon by NO donors, namely nitration of PKCepsilon, facilitates its interaction with RACK2 and promotes translocation and activation of PKCepsilon. These findings offer a plausible novel mechanism by which NO activates the PKC signaling pathway.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-43151, HL-55757, HL-63901, HL-65431, HL-68088

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;17;15021-7

  • Direct phosphorylation of capsaicin receptor VR1 by protein kinase Cepsilon and identification of two target serine residues.

    Numazaki M, Tominaga T, Toyooka H and Tominaga M

    Department of Physiology, Mie University School of Medicine, Edobashi 2-174, Tsu, Mie 514-8507, Japan.

    The capsaicin receptor, VR1, is a sensory neuron-specific ion channel that serves as a polymodal detector of pain-producing chemical and physical stimuli. It has been reported that ATP, one of the inflammatory mediators, potentiates the VR1 currents evoked by capsaicin or protons and reduces the temperature threshold for activation of VR1 through metabotropic P2Y(1) receptors in a protein Kinase C (PKC)-dependent pathway, suggesting the phosphorylation of VR1 by PKC. In this study, direct phosphorylation of VR1 upon application of phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) was proven biochemically in cells expressing VR1. An in vitro kinase assay using glutathione S-transferase fusion proteins with cytoplasmic segments of VR1 showed that both the first intracellular loop and carboxyl terminus of VR1 were phosphorylated by PKCepsilon. Patch clamp analysis of the point mutants where Ser or Thr residues were replaced with Ala in the total 16 putative phosphorylation sites showed that two Ser residues, Ser(502) and Ser(800) were involved in the potentiation of the capsaicin-evoked currents by either PMA or ATP. In the cells expressing S502A/S800A double mutant, the temperature threshold for activation was not reduced upon PMA treatment. The two sites would be promising targets for the development of substance modulating VR1 function, thereby reducing pain.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;16;13375-8

  • HIV-1 Tat protein induces interleukin-10 in human peripheral blood monocytes: involvement of protein kinase C-betaII and -delta.

    Bennasser Y and Bahraoui E

    Laboratoire d'Immuno-Virologie, EA 3038, Université Paul Sabatier, 31062 Toulouse, France.

    In HIV-infected patients, production of interleukin-10 (IL-10), a highly immunosuppressive cytokine, is associated with the disease progression toward AIDS. We have previously shown that HIV-1 Tat induces IL-10 production by human monocytes via a protein kinase C (PKC) -dependent pathway. Here we show that PKC activation by Tat is essential for IL-10 induction. Among the eight PKC isoforms present in human monocytes, we investigated which isoform(s) plays this crucial role in Tat-mediated IL-10 production and show that 1) Tat can activate PKC-alpha, PKC-betaII, PKC-delta, and PKC-epsilon, 2) of these four potential candidates, only PKC-betaII, PKC-delta, and PKC-epsilon are activated by the active domain Tat 1-45, which is responsible for IL-10 production and depleted by long-term exposure to PMA, which abolishes Tat-mediated IL-10 production, 3) whereas selective inhibition of PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon by specific antisense oligonucleotides has no effect on Tat-mediated IL-10 induction, inhibition of either PKC-betaII or PKC-delta partially inhibits IL-10 production; and 4) the simultaneous inhibition of PKC-betaII and PKC-delta totally inhibits Tat-mediated IL-10. Altogether, these results suggest that the induction of IL-10 by Tat is strictly dependent on the PKC-delta and -betaII isoforms.

    FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology 2002;16;6;546-54

  • Interaction of Bruton's tyrosine kinase and protein kinase Ctheta in platelets. Cross-talk between tyrosine and serine/threonine kinases.

    Crosby D and Poole AW

    Department of Pharmacology, School of Medical Sciences, University Walk, Bristol BS8 1TD, United Kingdom.

    The nonreceptor Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk) has been previously shown to associate physically and functionally with members of the protein kinase C (PKC) family of serine/threonine kinases in a variety of cell types. Here we show evidence for a novel interaction between Btk and PKCtheta; in platelets activated through the adhesion receptors GP Ib-V-IX and GP VI. Alboaggregin A, a snake venom component capable of activating both receptors in combination, leads to tyrosine phosphorylation of Btk downstream of Src family kinases. Inhibition of Btk by the selective antagonist LFM-A13 causes a reduction in calcium entry, although secretion of 5-hydroxytryptamine is potentiated. Btk is also phosphorylated on threonine residues in a PKC-dependent manner and associates with PKCtheta; upon platelet activation by either alboaggregin A or activation of GP Ib-V-IX alone by von Willebrand factor/ristocetin. PKCtheta; in turn becomes tyrosine-phosphorylated in a manner dependent upon Src family and Btk kinase activity. Inhibition of Btk activity by LFM-A13 leads to enhancement of PKCtheta; activity, whereas nonselective inhibition of PKC activity by bisindolylmaleimide I leads to reduction in Btk activity. We propose a reciprocal feedback interaction between Btk and PKCtheta; in platelets, in which PKCtheta; positively modulates activity of Btk, which in turn feeds back negatively upon PKCtheta;.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2002;277;12;9958-65

  • Molecular conformation dictates signaling module formation: example of PKCepsilon and Src tyrosine kinase.

    Song C, Vondriska TM, Wang GW, Klein JB, Cao X, Zhang J, Kang YJ, D'Souza S and Ping P

    Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky 40202, USA.

    Our laboratory has conducted multiple functional proteomic analyses to characterize the components of protein kinase C (PKC)epsilon cardioprotective signaling complexes and found that activation of PKCepsilon induces dynamic modulation of these complexes. In addition, it is known that signal transduction within a complex involves the formation of modules, one of which has been shown to include PKCepsilon and Src tyrosine kinase in the rabbit heart. However, the cellular mechanisms that define the assembly of PKCepsilon modules remain largely unknown. To address this issue, the interactions between PKCepsilon and Src were studied. We used recombinant proteins of wild-type PKCepsilon (PKCepsilon-WT) and open conformation mutants of the kinase (PKCepsilon-AE5 and PKCepsilon-AN59), the regulatory and catalytic domains of PKCepsilon, along with glutathione-S-transferase (GST) fusion proteins of Src (GST-Src) and two domains of Src (GST-SH2 and GST-SH3). GST pulldown assays demonstrated that Src and PKCepsilon are binding partners and that the interaction between PKCepsilon and Src appears to involve multiple sites. This finding was supported for endogenous PKCepsilon and Src in the murine heart using immunofluorescence-based confocal microscopy and coimmunoprecipitation. Furthermore, PKCepsilon-WT and GST-Src interactions were significantly enhanced in the presence of phosphatidyl-L-serine, an activator of PKC, indicating that Src favors interaction with activated PKCepsilon. This finding was confirmed when the PKCepsilon-WT was replaced with PKCepsilon-AE5 or PKCepsilon-AN59, demonstrating that the conformation of PKCepsilon is a critical determinant of its interactions with Src. Together, these results illustrate that formation of a signaling module between PKCepsilon and Src involves specific domains within the two molecules and is governed by the molecular conformation of PKCepsilon.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-43721, HL-59225, HL-63760, HL-63901, HL-65431, HL-66358

    American journal of physiology. Heart and circulatory physiology 2002;282;3;H1166-71

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon actin-binding site is important for neurite outgrowth during neuronal differentiation.

    Zeidman R, Trollér U, Raghunath A, Påhlman S and Larsson C

    Department of Laboratory Medicine, Molecular Medicine, Lund University, Malmö University Hospital, 205 02 Malmö, Sweden.

    We have previously shown that protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) induces neurite outgrowth via its regulatory domain and independently of its kinase activity. This study aimed at identifying mechanisms regulating PKCepsilon-mediated neurite induction. We show an increased association of PKCepsilon to the cytoskeleton during neuronal differentiation. Furthermore, neurite induction by overexpression of full-length PKCepsilon is suppressed if serum is removed from the cultures or if an actin-binding site is deleted from the protein. A peptide corresponding to the PKCepsilon actin-binding site suppresses neurite outgrowth during neuronal differentiation and outgrowth elicited by PKCepsilon overexpression. Neither serum removal, deletion of the actin-binding site, nor introduction of the peptide affects neurite induction by the isolated regulatory domain. Membrane targeting by myristoylation renders full-length PKCepsilon independent of both serum and the actin-binding site, and PKCepsilon colocalized with F-actin at the cortical cytoskeleton during neurite outgrowth. These results demonstrate that the actin-binding site is of importance for signals acting on PKCepsilon in a pathway leading to neurite outgrowth. Localization of PKCepsilon to the plasma membrane and/or the cortical cytoskeleton is conceivably important for its effect on neurite outgrowth.

    Molecular biology of the cell 2002;13;1;12-24

  • Regulation of tumor invasion and metastasis in protein kinase C epsilon-transformed NIH3T3 fibroblasts.

    Tachado SD, Mayhew MW, Wescott GG, Foreman TL, Goodwin CD, McJilton MA and Terrian DM

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina 27858, USA.

    Protein kinase C epsilon is an oncogenic, actin nucleating protein that coordinately regulates changes in cell growth and shape. Cells constitutively expressing PKCepsilon spontaneously acquire a polarized morphology and extend long cellular membrane protrusions. Here we report that the regulatory C1 domain of PKCepsilon contains an actin binding site that is essential for the formation of elongate invadopodial-like structures, increased pericellular metalloproteinase activity, in vitro invasion of a Matrigel barrier, and the invasion and metastasis of tumors grown in vivo by PKCepsilon-transformed NIH3T3 fibroblasts in nude mice. While removing this small actin binding motif caused a dramatic reversion of tumor invasion, the deletion mutant of PKCepsilon remained oncogenic and tumorigenic in this experimental system. We propose that PKCepsilon directly interacts with actin to stimulate polymerization and the extension of membrane protrusions that transformed NIH3T3 cells use in vivo to penetrate and degrade surrounding tissue boundaries.

    Funded by: NIEHS NIH HHS: ES8397

    Journal of cellular biochemistry 2002;85;4;785-97

  • Molecular basis for angiotensin II-induced increase of chloride/bicarbonate exchange in the myocardium.

    Alvarez BV, Fujinaga J and Casey JR

    Department of Physiology, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Group in Molecular Biology of Membrane Proteins, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada.

    Plasma membrane anion exchangers (AEs) regulate myocardial intracellular pH (pH(i)) by Na(+)-independent Cl(-)/HCO(3)(-) exchange. Angiotensin II (Ang II) activates protein kinase C (PKC) and increases anion exchange activity in the myocardium. Elevated anion exchange activity has been proposed to contribute to the development of cardiac hypertrophy. Our Northern blots showed that adult rat heart expresses AE1, AE2, AE3fl, and AE3c. Activity of each AE isoform was individually measured by following changes of pH(i), associated with bicarbonate transport, in transfected HEK293 cells. Exposure to the PKC activator, PMA (150 nmol/L), increased the transport activity of only the AE3fl isoform by 50+/-11% (P<0.05, n=6), consistent with the increase observed in intact myocardium. Cotransfection of HEK293 cells with AE3fl and AT1(a)-Ang II receptors conferred sensitivity of anion transport to Ang II (500 nmol/L), increasing the transport activity by 39+/-3% (P<0.05, n=4). PKC inhibition by chelerythrine (10 micromol/L) blocked the PMA effect. To identify the PKC-responsive site, 7 consensus PKC phosphorylation sites of AE3fl were individually mutated to alanine. Mutation of serine 67 of AE3 prevented the PMA-induced increase of anion transport activity. Inhibition of MEK1/2 by PD98059 (50 micromol/L) did not affect the response of AE3fl to Ang II, indicating that PKC directly phosphorylates AE3fl. We conclude that following Ang II stimulation of cells, PKCepsilon phosphorylates serine 67 of the AE3 cytoplasmic domain, inducing the Ang II-induced increase in anion transport observed in the hypertrophic myocardium.

    Circulation research 2001;89;12;1246-53

  • Enhanced PKC beta II translocation and PKC beta II-RACK1 interactions in PKC epsilon-induced heart failure: a role for RACK1.

    Pass JM, Gao J, Jones WK, Wead WB, Wu X, Zhang J, Baines CP, Bolli R, Zheng YT, Joshua IG and Ping P

    Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky 40202, USA.

    Recent investigations have established a role for the beta II-isoform of protein kinase C (PKC beta II) in the induction of cardiac hypertrophy and failure. Although receptors for activated C kinase (RACKs) have been shown to direct PKC signal transduction, the mechanism through which RACK1, a selective PKC beta II RACK, participates in PKC beta II-mediated cardiac hypertrophy and failure remains undefined. We have previously reported that PKC epsilon activation modulates the expression of RACKs, and that altered epsilon-isoform of PKC (PKC epsilon)-RACK interactions may facilitate the genesis of cardiac phenotypes in mice. Here, we present evidence that high levels of PKC epsilon activity are commensurate with impaired left ventricular function (dP/dt = 6,074 +/- 248 mmHg/s in control vs. 3,784 +/- 269 mmHg/s in transgenic) and significant myocardial hypertrophy. More importantly, we demonstrate that high levels of PKC epsilon activation induce a significant colocalization of PKC beta II with RACK1 (154 +/- 7% of control) and a marked redistribution of PKC beta II to the particulate fraction (17 +/- 2% of total PKC beta II in control mice vs. 49 +/- 5% of total PKC beta II in hypertrophied mice), without compensatory changes of the other eight PKC isoforms present in the mouse heart. This enhanced PKC beta II activation is coupled with increased RACK1 expression and PKC beta II-RACK1 interactions, demonstrating PKC epsilon-induced PKC beta II signaling via a RACK1-dependent mechanism. Taken together with our previous findings regarding enhanced RACK1 expression and PKC epsilon-RACK1 interactions in the setting of cardiac hypertrophy and failure, these results suggest that RACK1 serves as a nexus for at least two isoforms of PKC, the epsilon-isoform and the beta II-isoform, thus coordinating PKC-mediated hypertrophic signaling.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL-43151, HL-55757, HL-63034, HL-63901, HL-65431

    American journal of physiology. Heart and circulatory physiology 2001;281;6;H2500-10

  • Protein kinase Cepsilon is required for macrophage activation and defense against bacterial infection.

    Castrillo A, Pennington DJ, Otto F, Parker PJ, Owen MJ and Boscá L

    Instituto de Bioquímica (Centro Mixto Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas-UCM), Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad Complutense, 28040 Madrid, Spain.

    To assess directly the role of protein kinase C (PKC)epsilon in the immune system, we generated mice that carried a homozygous disruption of the PKCepsilon locus. PKCepsilon(-/-) animals appeared normal and were generally healthy, although female mice frequently developed a bacterial infection of the uterus. Macrophages from PKCepsilon(-/-) animals demonstrated a severely attenuated response to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon (IFN)gamma, characterized by a dramatic reduction in the generation of NO, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha, and interleukin (IL)-1beta. Further analysis revealed that LPS-stimulated macrophages from PKCepsilon(-/-) mice were deficient in the induction of nitric oxide synthase (NOS)-2, demonstrating a decrease in the activation of IkappaB kinase, a reduction in IkappaB degradation, and a decrease in nuclear factor (NF)kappaB nuclear translocation. After intravenous administration of Gram-negative or Gram-positive bacteria, PKCepsilon(-/-) mice demonstrated a significantly decreased period of survival. This study provides direct evidence that PKCepsilon is critically involved at an early stage of LPS-mediated signaling in activated macrophages. Furthermore, we demonstrate that in the absence of PKCepsilon, host defense against bacterial infection is severely compromised, resulting in an increased incidence of mortality.

    The Journal of experimental medicine 2001;194;9;1231-42

  • Opposing cardioprotective actions and parallel hypertrophic effects of delta PKC and epsilon PKC.

    Chen L, Hahn H, Wu G, Chen CH, Liron T, Schechtman D, Cavallaro G, Banci L, Guo Y, Bolli R, Dorn GW and Mochly-Rosen D

    Division of Chemical Biology, Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.

    Conflicting roles for protein kinase C (PKC) isozymes in cardiac disease have been reported. Here, deltaPKC-selective activator and inhibitor peptides were designed rationally, based on molecular modeling and structural homology analyses. Together with previously identified activator and inhibitor peptides of epsilonPKC, deltaPKC peptides were used to identify cardiac functions of these isozymes. In isolated cardiomyocytes, perfused hearts, and transgenic mice, deltaPKC and epsilonPKC had opposing actions on protection from ischemia-induced damage. Specifically, activation of epsilonPKC caused cardioprotection whereas activation of deltaPKC increased damage induced by ischemia in vitro and in vivo. In contrast, deltaPKC and epsilonPKC caused identical nonpathological cardiac hypertrophy; activation of either isozyme caused nonpathological hypertrophy of the heart. These results demonstrate that two related PKC isozymes have both parallel and opposing effects in the heart, indicating the danger in the use of therapeutics with nonselective isozyme inhibitors and activators. Moreover, reduction in cardiac damage caused by ischemia by perfusion of selective regulator peptides of PKC through the coronary arteries constitutes a major step toward developing a therapeutic agent for acute cardiac ischemia.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL43151, HL52141, HL52318, HL55757, P50 HL052318, R01 HL052141, R01 HL055757, R37 HL055757

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2001;98;20;11114-9

  • Isoforms of protein kinase C and their distribution in human adrenal cortex and tumors.

    Mikosha AS, Tron'ko ND, Staren'kii DV and Rybakov SI

    V. P. Komissarenko Institute of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine, Kiev. endo@i.kiev.ua

    The cytosol and microsomal fractions of human adrenal cortex contain 3 isoforms of protein kinase C: alpha, zeta, and epsilon. The latter fraction is present in trace amounts. No isoforms beta1, beta2, gamma and delta were found in these cell fractions. The distribution of alpha-isoform between the cytosol and microsomal fraction is determined by tissue origin: in normal tissue its content differs by no more than 10%, while in most tumors this isoform is translocated into the microsomal fraction. The distribution of zeta-isoform did not depend on tissue origin.

    Bulletin of experimental biology and medicine 2001;132;3;841-3

  • HIV envelope gp120 activates human arterial smooth muscle cells.

    Schecter AD, Berman AB, Yi L, Mosoian A, McManus CM, Berman JW, Klotman ME and Taubman MB

    Zena and Michael A. Wiener Cardiovascular Institute and Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY 10029, USA. alison.schecter@.mssm.edu

    There have been increasing reports of acute coronary thrombotic events in patients with HIV. Although these clinical events have been attributed primarily to dyslipidemia associated with protease inhibitor therapy, autopsy studies in children with HIV suggest the presence of an underlying arteriopathy. This study demonstrates that the HIV envelope protein, gp120, activates human arterial smooth muscle cells to express tissue factor, the initiator of the coagulation cascade. The induction of tissue factor by gp120 is mediated by two biologically relevant coreceptors for HIV infection, CXCR4 and CCR5, and is also dependent on the presence of functional CD4. Induction of tissue factor by gp120 requires activation of mitogen-activating protein kinases, activation of protein kinase C, and generation of reactive oxygen species, signaling pathways that have protean effects on smooth muscle cell physiology. The activation of smooth muscle cells by gp120 may play an important role in the vascular, thrombotic, and inflammatory responses to HIV infection.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL03801, HL29019, P01 HL029019; NIDDK NIH HHS: P01DKJ6492; NIMH NIH HHS: MH52974

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2001;98;18;10142-7

  • Inhibitory actions of ceramide upon PKC-epsilon/ERK interactions.

    Bourbon NA, Yun J, Berkey D, Wang Y and Kester M

    Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, PA 17033, USA.

    We have previously shown that interleukin-1 receptor-generated ceramide induces growth arrest in smooth muscle pericytes by inhibiting an upstream kinase in the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) cascade. Here, we now report the mechanism by which ceramide inhibits ERK activity. Ceramide renders the human embryonic kidney 293 cells (HEK 293) resistant to the mitogenic actions of growth factors and activators of protein kinase C (PKC). A role for PKC to mediate ceramide inhibition of growth factor-induced ERK activity and mitogenesis is suggested, as exogenous ceramide directly inhibits both immunoprecipitated and recombinant PKC-epsilon activities. To confirm that PKC-epsilon is necessary for ceramide-inhibited ERK activity, HEK 293 cells were transfected with a dominant-negative mutant of PKC-epsilon (DeltaPKC-epsilon). These transfected cells respond to insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) with a significantly decreased ERK activity that is not further reduced by ceramide treatment. Coimmunoprecipitation studies reveal that the treatment with IGF-I induces the association of ERK with PKC-epsilon but not with PKC-zeta. Ceramide treatment significantly inhibits the IGF-I-induced PKC-epsilon interaction with bioactive phosphorylated ERK. Ceramide also inhibits IGF-I-induced PKC-epsilon association with Raf-1, an upstream kinase of ERK. Together, these studies demonstrate that ceramide exerts anti-mitogenic actions by limiting the ability of PKC-epsilon to form a signaling complex with Raf-1 and ERK.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK-53715

    American journal of physiology. Cell physiology 2001;280;6;C1403-11

  • Heterologous activation of protein kinase C stimulates phosphorylation of delta-opioid receptor at serine 344, resulting in beta-arrestin- and clathrin-mediated receptor internalization.

    Xiang B, Yu GH, Guo J, Chen L, Hu W, Pei G and Ma L

    National Laboratory of Medical Neurobiology, Fudan University Medical Center, Shanghai 200032, People's Republic of China.

    The purpose of the current study is to investigate the effect of opioid-independent, heterologous activation of protein kinase C (PKC) on the responsiveness of opioid receptor and the underlying molecular mechanisms. Our result showed that removing the C terminus of delta opioid receptor (DOR) containing six Ser/Thr residues abolished both DPDPE- and phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA)-induced DOR phosphorylation. The phosphorylation levels of DOR mutants T352A, T353A, and T358A/T361A/S363S were comparable to that of the wild-type DOR, whereas S344G substitution blocked PMA-induced receptor phosphorylation, indicating that PKC-mediated phosphorylation occurs at Ser-344. PKC-mediated Ser-344 phosphorylation was also induced by activation of G(q)-coupled alpha(1A)-adrenergic receptor or increase in intracellular Ca(2+) concentration. Activation of PKC by PMA, alpha(1A)-adrenergic receptor agonist, and ionomycin resulted in DOR internalization that required phosphorylation of Ser-344. Expression of dominant negative beta-arrestin and hypertonic sucrose treatment blocked PMA-induced DOR internalization, suggesting that PKC mediates DOR internalization via a beta-arrestin- and clathrin-dependent mechanism. Further study demonstrated that agonist-dependent G protein-coupled receptor kinase (GRK) phosphorylation sites in DOR are not targets of PKC. Agonist-dependent, GRK-mediated receptor phosphorylation and agonist-independent, PKC-mediated DOR phosphorylation were additive, but agonist-induced receptor phosphorylation could inhibit PKC-catalyzed heterologous DOR phosphorylation and subsequent internalization. These data demonstrate that the responsiveness of opioid receptor is regulated by both PKC and GRK through agonist-dependent and agonist-independent mechanisms and PKC-mediated receptor phosphorylation is an important molecular mechanism of heterologous regulation of opioid receptor functions.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2001;276;7;4709-16

  • HIV-1 Tat promotes monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 secretion followed by transmigration of monocytes.

    Park IW, Wang JF and Groopman JE

    Division of Experimental Medicine and Hematology/Oncology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Institutes of Medicine, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

    The mechanism whereby HIV-infected cells transit from the bloodstream into tissues is not well defined. This phenomenon was addressed by studying the effects of HIV-1 Tat, a protein secreted by infected cells, on human lung microvascular endothelial cells (HMVEC-Ls). It was found that monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) was released from HMVEC-Ls in a dose- and time-dependent manner after Tat treatment. MCP-1 is a potent beta-chemokine that recruits monocytes and T cells and promotes cell adhesion and transmigration across an endothelial monolayer. It was also observed that MCP-1 and the culture medium from Tat-treated HMVEC-Ls were chemotactic for CD14(+) monocytes from human peripheral blood and for THP-1, a promonocytic cell line used as a model system. To characterize the signaling pathways underlying the observed induction of MCP-1, HMVEC-Ls were treated with 2 different protein kinase inhibitors: PD98059, a MAP kinase inhibitor, and GF109203X, a protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor. MCP-1 release was significantly reduced when PKC was inhibited, and slightly decreased when PI3 kinase was blocked; no effect on MCP-1 release was observed on MAP kinase inhibition. Similarly, transmigration of THP-1 cells was significantly impaired by the PKC inhibitor, but not by the other tested inhibitors. These data indicate that the HIV-1 Tat protein may act as a protocytokine by causing the release of MCP-1 from the endothelial monolayer, and thereby facilitating monocyte transmigration into tissues via a PKC signaling pathway.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL53745, HL61940

    Blood 2001;97;2;352-8

  • [HIV-1 Tat protein induces IL-10 production by human monocytes: implications of the PKC and calcium pathway].

    Bennasser Y, Yamina B, Contreras X, Xavier C, Moreau M, Marc M, Le Clerc C, Catherine L, Badou A, Abdallah B and Bahraoui E

    Laboratoire d'Immuno-Virologie, Université Paul Sabatier 118, route de Narbonne, 31062 Toulouse.

    In asymptomatic patients infected by HIV-1, the level of IL-10, a cytokine with immunosuppressive activity, is associated with the course of HIV infection towards AIDS. We show that HIV-1 Tat, a viral protein secreted by infected cells, induces IL-10 production by human peripheral blood monocytes. The analysis of the signal transduction pathways strongly suggests that the protein kinase C may play an essential role in this induction. Stimulation by Tat induces nuclear translocation of the transcription factor NFkB the activation of which seems to be necessary for IL-10 production. Using microspectrofluorimetry and confocal microscopy, we also show that Tat induces a calcium influx.

    Journal de la Societe de biologie 2001;195;3;319-26

  • Induction of vanilloid receptor channel activity by protein kinase C.

    Premkumar LS and Ahern GP

    Department of Pharmacology, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield 62702, USA. lpremkumar@siumed.edu

    Capsaicin or vanilloid receptors (VRs) participate in the sensation of thermal and inflammatory pain. The cloned (VR1) and native VRs are non-selective cation channels directly activated by harmful heat, extracellular protons and vanilloid compounds. However, considerable attention has been focused on identifying other signalling pathways in VR activation; it is known that VR1 is also expressed in non-sensory tissue and may mediate inflammatory rather than acute thermal pain. Here we show that activation of protein kinase C (PKC) induces VR1 channel activity at room temperature in the absence of any other agonist. We also observed this effect in native VRs from sensory neurons, and phorbol esters induced a vanilloid-sensitive Ca2+ rise in these cells. Moreover, the pro-inflammatory peptide, bradykinin, and the putative endogenous ligand, anandamide, respectively induced and enhanced VR activity, in a PKC-dependent manner. These results suggest that PKC may link a range of stimuli to the activation of VRs.

    Nature 2000;408;6815;985-90

  • Involvement of protein kinase C in HIV-1 gp120-induced apoptosis in primary endothelium.

    Huang MB and Bond VC

    Department of Biochemistry, Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia 30310-1495, USA.

    We previously showed that HIV-1 gp120-induced apoptosis in primary human umbilical vein endothelial cell cultures (HUVEC), through CCR5 and CXCR4. Here, we have found that agonists of protein kinase C (PKC), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), and short exposure to low concentrations of phorbol esters were found to block gp120-induced apoptosis in HUVEC cultures. PKC antagonists, sphingosine, H7, and extended exposure of cultures to high concentrations of phorbol esters were also found to block gp120-induced apoptosis in HUVEC cultures. A significant increase in the total amount of cellular PKC enzymatic activity was observed on exposure of HUVEC to gp120. No increase in total PKC activity was observed on exposure of HUVECs to the natural ligands SDF-1alpha, or regulated-on-activation normal T-expressed and secreted (RANTES) cells, and gp120-induced PKC induction was found to be totally blocked by CXCR4 antibodies and partially blocked by the caspase 3 inhibitor, DEVD-CHO. Alternatively, CXCR4 antibodies and DEVD-CHO totally blocked apoptosis. Finally, gp120-induced effects were found to be insensitive to pertussis toxin. Accumulated evidence suggests PKC involvement at multiple points in the gp120-induced apoptotic pathway; also suggests involvement of the CXCR4 receptor internalization pathway, and potentially suggests different downstream effects of gp120-receptor interactions and natural ligand-receptor interactions.

    Funded by: NCRR NIH HHS: G12-RR03034

    Journal of acquired immune deficiency syndromes (1999) 2000;25;5;375-89

  • Changes in protein kinase C epsilon phosphorylation status and intracellular localization as 3T3 and 3T6 fibroblasts grow to confluency and quiescence: a role for phosphorylation at ser-729?

    England K and Rumsby MG

    Department of Biology, University of York, P.O. Box 373, York YO10 5YW, UK. ke5@york.ac.uk

    Protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon in 3T3 and 3T6 fibroblasts and in C6 glioma cells migrated on SDS/PAGE predominantly as a doublet with molecular masses of 87 and 95 kDa (PKC epsilon(87) and PKC epsilon(95) respectively). PKC epsilon(95) predominates when cells reach confluency but PKC epsilon(87) was the main form detected within 15 min when confluent cells were passaged at low cell density into fresh medium containing serum and allowed to adhere. Matrix-assisted laser-desorption ionization-time-of-flight MS analysis and experiments with phosphospecific antibodies revealed that PKC epsilon(87) is phosphorylated at Thr-566 and Ser-703, and PKC epsilon(95) is additionally phosphorylated at Ser-729. Cell fractionation studies revealed that PKC epsilon(95) is associated with the nuclear fraction, whereas PKC epsilon(87) was found in the 100,000 g cytosol fraction. Immunofluorescence studies confirmed these findings and showed that PKC epsilon(95) had a perinuclear, probably Golgi, localization and PKC epsilon(87) was distributed in the cytosol. It is proposed that phosphorylation at Ser-729 may be important for determining the intracellular localization of PKC epsilon, and that a specific Ser-729 phosphatase may be activated on cell passage to convert PKC epsilon(95) to PKC epsilon(87).

    The Biochemical journal 2000;352 Pt 1;19-26

  • Association of immature hypophosphorylated protein kinase cepsilon with an anchoring protein CG-NAP.

    Takahashi M, Mukai H, Oishi K, Isagawa T and Ono Y

    Biosignal Research Center, Kobe University, Kobe 657-8501, Japan.

    Protein kinase C (PKC) family requires phosphorylation of itself to become competent for responding to second messengers. Much attention has been focused on elucidating the role of phosphorylation in PKC activity; however, it remains unknown where this modification takes place in the cells. This study examines whether anchoring protein is involved in the regulation of PKC phosphorylation. A certain population of PKC epsilon in rat brain extracts as well as that expressed in COS7 cells was associated with an endogenous anchoring protein CG-NAP (centrosome and Golgi localized PKN- associated protein). Pulse chase experiments revealed that the associated PKC epsilon was an immature species at the hypophosphorylated state. In vitro binding studies confirmed that non- or hypophosphorylated PKC epsilon directly bound to CG-NAP via its catalytic domain, whereas sufficiently phosphorylated PKC epsilon did not. PKC epsilon mutant at a potential phosphorylation site of Thr-566 or Ser-729 to Ala, possessing almost no catalytic activity, was associated and co-localized with CG-NAP at Golgi/centrosome area. On the other hand, wild type and a phosphorylation-mimicking mutant at Thr-566 were mainly distributed in cytosol and represented second messenger-dependent catalytic activation. These results suggest that CG-NAP anchors hypophosphorylated PKCepsilon at the Golgi/centrosome area during maturation and serves as a scaffold for the phosphorylation reaction.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2000;275;44;34592-6

  • Tat protein of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 induces interleukin-10 in human peripheral blood monocytes: implication of protein kinase C-dependent pathway.

    Badou A, Bennasser Y, Moreau M, Leclerc C, Benkirane M and Bahraoui E

    Laboratoire d'Immuno-Virologie EA3038, Université Paul Sabatier, 31062 Toulouse Cedex, France.

    The clinical manifestations observed in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-infected patients are primarily due to the capacity of the virus and its components to inactivate the immune system. HIV-1 Tat protein could participate in this immune system disorder. This protein is secreted by infected cells of HIV-infected patients and is free in the plasma, where it can interact and be taken up by both infected and noninfected cells. In asymptomatic patients infected by HIV-1, production of interleukin-10 (IL-10), a highly immunosuppressive cytokine, is associated with disease progression to AIDS. In the present work, we tested the capacity of Tat to induce IL-10 production by peripheral blood monocytes of healthy donors. The results show that Tat causes the production of IL-10 in a dose- and stimulation time-dependent manner. Investigations of the mechanisms involved in signal transduction show that (i) the calcium pathway is not or only slightly involved in Tat-induced IL-10 production, (ii) the protein kinase C pathway plays an essential role, and (iii) monocyte stimulation by Tat results in the intranuclear translocation of transcription factor NF-kappaB and in the induction of phosphorylation of the mitogen-activated protein kinases ERK1 and ERK2; activation of these two potential substrates of protein kinase C is required for the production of IL-10. Finally, our results suggest that the effect of Tat is exerted at the membrane level and that the active domain is located within N-terminal residues 1 to 45. This production of IL-10 induced by Tat could participate in the progression of HIV infection to AIDS.

    Journal of virology 2000;74;22;10551-62

  • Platelet-endothelial cell adhesion molecule-1 (CD31), a scaffolding molecule for selected catenin family members whose binding is mediated by different tyrosine and serine/threonine phosphorylation.

    Ilan N, Cheung L, Pinter E and Madri JA

    Department of Pathology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.

    Platelet-endothelial cell adhesion molecule (PECAM)-1 is a 130-kDa glycoprotein commonly used as an endothelium-specific marker. Evidence to date suggests that PECAM-1 is more than just an endothelial cell marker but is intimately involved in signal transduction pathways. This is mediated in part by phosphorylation of specific tyrosine residues within the ITAM domain of PECAM-1 and by recruitment of adapter and signaling molecules. Recently we demonstrated that PECAM-1/beta-catenin association functions to regulate beta-catenin localization and, moreover, to modulate beta-catenin tyrosine phosphorylation levels. Here we show that: 1) not only beta-catenin, but also gamma-catenin is associated with PECAM-1 in vitro and in vivo; 2) PKC enzyme directly phosphorylates purified PECAM-1; 3) PKC-derived PECAM-1 serine/threonine phosphorylation inversely correlates with gamma-catenin association; 4) PECAM-1 recruits gamma-catenin to cell-cell junctions in transfected SW480 cells; and 5) gamma-catenin may recruit PECAM-1 into an insoluble cytoskeletal fraction. These data further support the concept that PECAM-1 functions as a binder and modulator of catenins and provides a molecular mechanism for previously reported PECAM-1/cytoskeleton interactions.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: R37-HL28373; NIDDK NIH HHS: P01-DK38979

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2000;275;28;21435-43

  • Involvement of p21(Waf1/Cip1) 1f40 in protein kinase C alpha-induced cell cycle progression.

    Besson A and Yong VW

    Departments of Oncology and Clinical Neurosciences, University of Calgary, Canada.

    Protein kinase C (PKC) plays an important role in the regulation of glioma growth; however, the identity of the specific isoform and mechanism by which PKC fulfills this function remain unknown. In this study, we demonstrate that PKC activation in glioma cells increased their progression through the cell cycle. Of the six PKC isoforms that were present in glioma cells, PKC alpha was both necessary and sufficient to promote cell cycle progression when stimulated with phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate. Also, decreased PKC alpha expression resulted in a marked decrease in cell proliferation. The only cell cycle-regulatory molecule whose expression was rapidly altered and increased by PKC alpha activity was the cyclin-cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibitor p21(Waf1/Cip1). Coimmunoprecipitation studies revealed that p21(Waf1/Cip1) upregulation was accompanied by an incorporation of p21(Waf1/Cip1) into various cyclin-CDK complexes and that the kinase activity of these complexes was increased, thus resulting in cell cycle progression. Furthermore, depletion of p21(Waf1/Cip1) by antisense strategy attenuated the PKC-induced cell cycle progression. These results suggest that PKC alpha activity controls glioma cell cycle progression through the upregulation of p21(Waf1/Cip1), which facilitates active cyclin-CDK complex formation.

    Molecular and cellular biology 2000;20;13;4580-90

  • Proteomic analysis of NMDA receptor-adhesion protein signaling complexes.

    Husi H, Ward MA, Choudhary JS, Blackstock WP and Grant SG

    Centre for Genome Research, Centre for Neuroscience, University of Edinburgh, West Mains Road, Edinburgh EH9 3JQ, UK.

    N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDAR) mediate long-lasting changes in synapse strength via downstream signaling pathways. We report proteomic characterization with mass spectrometry and immunoblotting of NMDAR multiprotein complexes (NRC) isolated from mouse brain. The NRC comprised 77 proteins organized into receptor, adaptor, signaling, cytoskeletal and novel proteins, of which 30 are implicated from binding studies and another 19 participate in NMDAR signaling. NMDAR and metabotropic glutamate receptor subtypes were linked to cadherins and L1 cell-adhesion molecules in complexes lacking AMPA receptors. These neurotransmitter-adhesion receptor complexes were bound to kinases, phosphatases, GTPase-activating proteins and Ras with effectors including MAPK pathway components. Several proteins were encoded by activity-dependent genes. Genetic or pharmacological interference with 15 NRC proteins impairs learning and with 22 proteins alters synaptic plasticity in rodents. Mutations in three human genes (NF1, Rsk-2, L1) are associated with learning impairments, indicating the NRC also participates in human cognition.

    Nature neuroscience 2000;3;7;661-9

  • Release of calcium from inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor-regulated stores by HIV-1 Tat regulates TNF-alpha production in human macrophages.

    Mayne M, Holden CP, Nath A and Geiger JD

    Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada.

    HIV-1 protein Tat is neurotoxic and increases macrophage and microglia production of TNF-alpha, a cytopathic cytokine linked to the neuropathogenesis of HIV dementia. Others have shown that intracellular calcium regulates TNF-alpha production in macrophages, and we have shown that Tat releases calcium from inositol 1,4, 5-trisphosphate (IP3) receptor-regulated stores in neurons and astrocytes. Accordingly, we tested the hypothesis that Tat-induced TNF-alpha production was dependent on the release of intracellular calcium from IP3-regulated calcium stores in primary macrophages. We found that Tat transiently and dose-dependently increased levels of intracellular calcium and that this increase was blocked by xestospongin C, pertussis toxin, and by phospholipase C and type 1 protein kinase C inhibitors but not by protein kinase A or phospholipase A2 inhibitors. Xestospongin C, BAPTA-AM, U73122, and bisindolylmalemide significantly inhibited Tat-induced TNF-alpha production. These results demonstrate that in macrophages, Tat-induced release of calcium from IP3-sensitive intracellular stores and activation of nonconventional PKC isoforms play an important role in Tat-induced TNF-alpha production.

    Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950) 2000;164;12;6538-42

  • The epsilon subtype of protein kinase C is required for cardiomyocyte connexin-43 phosphorylation.

    Doble BW, Ping P and Kardami E

    Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences, University of Manitoba, St. Boniface General Hospital Research Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

    Gap junctions (GJs), composed of connexins, are intercellular channels ensuring electric and metabolic coupling between cardiomyocytes. We have shown previously that an endogenous mitogenic and cardioprotective protein, fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), decreases cardiomyocyte GJ permeability by stimulating phosphorylation of connexin-43 (Cx43). Identifying the kinase(s) phosphorylating cardiac Cx43 may thus provide a way of modulating cardiac intercellular communication. Because FGF-2 activates receptors linked to protein kinase C (PKC) and mitogen-activated protein kinase, we first investigated participation of these enzymatic systems in Cx43 phosphorylation. The inhibitor PD98059 blocked activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase, but it did not prevent the FGF-2 effects on GJs. In contrast, the PKC inhibitor chelerythrine blocked the effects of FGF-2 on Cx43 phosphorylation and permeability. Because the epsilon-isoform of PKC localizes to plasma membrane sites, we examined whether it is directly involved in the FGF-2-induced Cx43 phosphorylation. In nonstimulated myocytes, PKCepsilon displayed a discontinuous pattern of localization at intercellular contact sites and partial colocalization with Cx43. Treatment with FGF-2 or phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate induced a more continuous pattern of PKCepsilon distribution, whereas the anti-Cx43 staining appeared to overlap extensively with that of PKCepsilon. In immunoprecipitation experiments using specific anti-Cx43 antibodies, PKCepsilon but not PKCalpha coprecipitated with Cx43. FGF-2 increased levels of coprecipitated PKCepsilon, suggesting increased association between PKCepsilon and Cx43 on stimulation. Transient gene transfer and overexpression of cDNAs coding for truncated or mutated dominant-negative forms of PKCepsilon decreased cardiomyocyte Cx43 phosphorylation significantly. We conclude that PKC mediates the FGF-2-induced effects on cardiac GJs and that PKCepsilon likely interacts with and phosphorylates cardiac Cx43 at sites of intercellular contact.

    Circulation research 2000;86;3;293-301

  • HIV-1 reverse transcriptase is phosphorylated in vitro and in a cellular system.

    Idriss H, Kawa S, Damuni Z, Thompson EB and Wilson SH

    Sealy Center for Molecular Science, The University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston, TX 77555-0851, USA. hi@st-and.ac.uk

    Phosphorylation modulates the activity of many proteins that interact with nucleic acids including DNA and RNA polymerases. The HIV-1 reverse transcriptase (RT) is essential during the replicative cycle of the HIV-1 virus. HIV-1 RT has several potential sites for phosphorylation that could regulate its activities. In this work, the phosphorylation of HIV-1 RT is examined in vitro and in vivo, to evaluate any role for this modification in regulating RT metabolism. Recombinant unphosphorylated HIV-1 RT heterodimer expressed in bacteria can be phosphorylated in vitro by several purified mammalian protein kinases. Seven kinases were tested, and five of these enzymes phosphorylated HIV-1 RT. Using an insect baculovirus expression system, the 66 kDa HIV-1 RT was also phosphorylated in vivo. However, HIV-1 RT immunoprecipitated from H9-lymphoma cells infected with HIV-1 showed negligible phosphorylation. Our results indicate that purified HIV-1 RT can be phosphorylated by several mammalian protein kinases in vitro and during expression in baculovirus infected insect cells.

    Funded by: NIDDK NIH HHS: DK41058

    The international journal of biochemistry & cell biology 1999;31;12;1443-52

  • Cardioprotection from ischemia by a brief exposure to physiological levels of ethanol: role of epsilon protein kinase C.

    Chen CH, Gray MO and Mochly-Rosen D

    Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305-5332, USA.

    Recent epidemiological studies indicate beneficial effects of moderate ethanol consumption in ischemic heart disease. Most studies, however, focus on the effect of long-term consumption of ethanol. In this study, we determined whether brief exposure to ethanol immediately before ischemia also produces cardioprotection. In addition, because protein kinase C (PKC) has been shown to mediate protection of the heart from ischemia, we determined the role of specific PKC isozymes in ethanol-induced protection. We demonstrated that (i) brief exposure of isolated adult rat cardiac myocytes to 10-50 mM ethanol protected against damage induced by prolonged ischemia; (ii) an isozyme-selective epsilonPKC inhibitor developed in our laboratory inhibited the cardioprotective effect of acute ethanol exposure; (iii) protection of isolated intact adult rat heart also occurred after incubation with 10 mM ethanol 20 min before global ischemia; and (iv) ethanol-induced cardioprotection depended on PKC activation because it was blocked by chelerythrine and GF109203X, two PKC inhibitors. Consumption of 1-2 alcoholic beverages in humans leads to blood alcohol levels of approximately 10 mM. Therefore, our work demonstrates that exposure to physiologically attainable ethanol levels minutes before ischemia provides cardioprotection that is mediated by direct activation of epsilonPKC in the cardiac myocytes. The potential clinical implications of our findings are discussed.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: AA11147, R01 AA011147, R37 AA011147

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 1999;96;22;12784-9

  • Effect of serine and tyrosine phosphorylation on retroviral proteinase substrates.

    Tözsér J, Bagossi P, Boross P, Louis JM, Majerova E, Oroszlan S and Copeland TD

    Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University Medical School of Debrecen, Hungary. tozser@indi.biochem.dote.hu

    Vimentin, a cellular substrate of HIV type 1 (HIV-1) proteinase, contains a protein kinase C (PKC) phosphorylation site at one of its cleavage sites. Peptides representing this site were synthesized in P2 Ser-phosphorylated and nonphosphorylated forms. While the nonphosphorylated peptide was a fairly good substrate of the enzyme, phosphorylation prevented hydrolysis. Phosphorylation of human recombinant vimentin by PKC prevented its processing within the head domain, where the phosphorylation occurred. Oligopeptides representing naturally occurring cleavage sites at the C-terminus of the Rous sarcoma virus integrase were assayed as substrates of the avian proteinase. Unlike the nonphosphorylated peptides, a Ser-phosphorylated peptide was not hydrolyzed by the enzyme at the Ser-Pro bond, suggesting the role of previously established phosphorylation in processing at this site. Ser-phosphorylated and Tyr-phosphorylated forms of model substrates were also tested as substrates of the HIV-1 and the avian retroviral proteinases. In contrast to the moderate effect of P4 Ser phosphorylation, phosphorylation of P1 Tyr prevented substrate hydrolysis by HIV-1 proteinase. Substrate phosphorylation had substantially smaller effects on the hydrolysis by the avian retroviral proteinase. As the active retroviral proteinase as well as various protein kinases are incorporated into mature virions, substrate phosphorylation resulting in attenuation or prevention of proteolytic processing may have important consequences in the regulation of the retroviral life cycle as well as in virus-host cell interactions.

    European journal of biochemistry 1999;265;1;423-9

  • Involvement of protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCepsilon) in thyroid cell death. A truncated chimeric PKCepsilon cloned from a thyroid cancer cell line protects thyroid cells from apoptosis.

    Knauf JA, Elisei R, Mochly-Rosen D, Liron T, Chen XN, Gonsky R, Korenberg JR and Fagin JA

    Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio 45267-0547, USA.

    The protein kinase C (PKC) family has been implicated in the regulation of apoptosis. However, the contribution of individual PKC isozymes to this process is not well understood. We reported amplification of the chromosome 2p21 locus in 28% of thyroid neoplasms, and in the WRO thyroid carcinoma cell line. By positional cloning we identified a rearrangement and amplification of the PKCepsilon gene, that maps to 2p21, in WRO cells. This resulted in the overexpression of a chimeric/truncated PKCepsilon (Tr-PKCepsilon) mRNA, coding for N-terminal amino acids 1-116 of the isozyme fused to an unrelated sequence. Expression of the Tr-PKCepsilon protein in PCCL3 cells inhibited activation-induced translocation of endogenous PKCepsilon, but its kinase activity was unaffected, consistent with a dominant negative effect of the mutant protein on activation-induced translocation of wild-type PKCepsilon and/or displacement of the isozyme to an aberrant subcellular location. Cell lines expressing Tr-PKCepsilon grew to a higher saturation density than controls. Moreover, cells expressing Tr-PKCepsilon were resistant to apoptosis, which was associated with higher Bcl-2 levels, a marked impairment in p53 stabilization, and dampened expression of Bax. These findings point to a role for PKCepsilon in apoptosis-signaling pathways in thyroid cells, and indicate that a naturally occurring PKCepsilon mutant that functions as a dominant negative can block cell death triggered by a variety of stimuli.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: 1F32CA69711-01, CA50706, CA72597; ...

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1999;274;33;23414-25

  • HIV-1 Nef alters the expression of betaII and epsilon isoforms of protein kinase C and the activation of the long terminal repeat promoter in human astrocytoma cells.

    Ambrosini E, Slepko N, Kohleisen B, Shumay E, Erfle V, Aloisi F and Levi G

    Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Rome, Italy.

    In the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-infected brain, the virus does not replicate in astrocytes, but a synthesis of viral regulatory proteins occurs in these cells, leading to accumulation of Nef. As an approach to understand the effects of Nef on astrocyte functional activity, we analyzed whether intracellular Nef interferes with the expression and activation of the enzyme protein kinase C (PKC), which is an important regulator of astroglial functions and HIV-1 replication. Astrocytoma clones (U251 MG) not expressing Nef (Neo), or expressing wild-type Nef (Bru) or nonmyristoylated Nef (TH) were used to monitor the expression and activation of 10 PKC isoforms. The same clones were used to evaluate the effect of Nef on the viral long terminal repeat (LTR) promoter after activation of PKC with the phorbol ester 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA). PKC intracellular distribution and activation were evaluated by Western blot analysis of cytosolic and membrane fractions of control and Nef-expressing clones. PMA-induced LTR activation was analyzed in clones transfected with a plasmid encoding for the CAT reporter gene controlled by the LTR promoter, by using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay to measure CAT expression. Nef selectively downregulated the expression and activation of betaII and epsilon PKC isoforms in astrocytoma cells. Such downregulation correlated with an inhibition of LTR activation after PMA stimulation. The myristoylation of Nef and its membrane localization were essential for these effects. These results suggest that Nef may alter astrocytic functions by interfering with PKC expression and activation and contribute to the restriction of HIV-1 replication in astrocytes.

    Glia 1999;27;2;143-51

  • alpha-Synuclein shares physical and functional homology with 14-3-3 proteins.

    Ostrerova N, Petrucelli L, Farrer M, Mehta N, Choi P, Hardy J and Wolozin B

    Department of Pharmacology, Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, Illinois 60153, USA.

    alpha-Synuclein has been implicated in the pathophysiology of many neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD) and Alzheimer's disease. Mutations in alpha-synuclein cause some cases of familial PD (Polymeropoulos et al., 1997; Kruger et al., 1998). In addition, many neurodegenerative diseases show accumulation of alpha-synuclein in dystrophic neurites and in Lewy bodies (Spillantini et al., 1998). Here, we show that alpha-synuclein shares physical and functional homology with 14-3-3 proteins, which are a family of ubiquitous cytoplasmic chaperones. Regions of alpha-synuclein and 14-3-3 proteins share over 40% homology. In addition, alpha-synuclein binds to 14-3-3 proteins, as well as some proteins known to associate with 14-3-3, including protein kinase C, BAD, and extracellular regulated kinase, but not Raf-1. We also show that overexpression of alpha-synuclein inhibits protein kinase C activity. The association of alpha-synuclein with BAD and inhibition of protein kinase C suggests that increased expression of alpha-synuclein could be harmful. Consistent with this hypothesis, we observed that overexpression of wild-type alpha-synuclein is toxic, and overexpression of alpha-synuclein containing the A53T or A30P mutations exhibits even greater toxicity. The activity and binding profile of alpha-synuclein suggests that it might act as a protein chaperone and that accumulation of alpha-synuclein could contribute to cell death in neurodegenerative diseases.

    The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience 1999;19;14;5782-91

  • Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II regulates Tiam1 by reversible protein phosphorylation.

    Fleming IN, Elliott CM, Buchanan FG, Downes CP and Exton JH

    Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee 37232-0295, USA.

    A number of guanine nucleotide exchange factors have been identified that activate Rho family GTPases, by promoting the binding of GTP to these proteins. We have recently demonstrated that lysophosphatidic acid and several other agonists stimulate phosphorylation of the Rac1-specific exchange factor Tiam1 in Swiss 3T3 fibroblasts, and that protein kinase C is involved in Tiam1 phosphorylation (Fleming, I. N., Elliott, C. M., Collard, J. G., and Exton, J. H. (1997) J. Biol. Chem. 272, 33105-33110). We now show, through manipulation of intracellular [Ca2+] and the use of protein kinase inhibitors, that both protein kinase Calpha and Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II are involved in the phosphorylation of Tiam1 in vivo. Furthermore, we show that Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II phosphorylates Tiam1 in vitro, producing an electrophoretic retardation on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Significantly, phosphorylation of Tiam1 by Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II, but not by protein kinase C, enhanced its nucleotide exchange activity toward Rac1, by approximately 2-fold. Furthermore, Tiam1 was preferentially dephosphorylated by protein phosphatase 1 in vitro, and treatment with this phosphatase abolished the Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II activation of Tiam1. These data demonstrate that protein kinase Calpha and Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II phosphorylate Tiam1 in vivo, and that the latter kinase plays a key role in regulating the activity of this exchange factor in vitro.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1999;274;18;12753-8

  • The pleckstrin homology domain of protein kinase D interacts preferentially with the eta isoform of protein kinase C.

    Waldron RT, Iglesias T and Rozengurt E

    Department of Medicine, School of Medicine and Molecular Biology Institute, University of California, Los Angeles, California 90095-1786, USA.

    The results presented here demonstrate that protein kinase D (PKD) and PKCeta transiently coexpressed in COS-7 cells form complexes that can be immunoprecipitated from cell lysates using specific antisera to PKD or PKCeta. The presence of PKCeta in PKD immune complexes was initially detected by in vitro kinase assays which reveal the presence of an 80-kDa phosphorylated band in addition to the 110-kDa band corresponding to autophosphorylated PKD. The association between PKD and PKCeta was further verified by Western blot analysis and peptide phosphorylation assays that exploited the distinct substrate specificity between PKCs and PKD. By the same criteria, PKD formed complexes only very weakly with PKCepsilon, and did not bind PKCzeta. When PKCeta was coexpressed with PKD mutants containing either complete or partial deletions of the PH domain, both PKCeta immunoreactivity and PKC activity in PKD immunoprecipitates were sharply reduced. In contrast, deletion of an amino-terminal portion of the molecule, either cysteine-rich region, or the entire cysteine-rich domain did not interfere with the association of PKD with PKCeta. Furthermore, a glutathione S-transferase-PKDPH fusion protein bound preferentially to PKCeta. These results indicate that the PKD PH domain can discriminate between closely related structures of a single enzyme family, e.g. novel PKCs epsilon and eta, thereby revealing a previously undetected degree of specificity among protein-protein interactions mediated by PH domains.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1999;274;14;9224-30

  • A novel mitogenic signaling pathway of bradykinin in the human colon carcinoma cell line SW-480 involves sequential activation of a Gq/11 protein, phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase beta, and protein kinase Cepsilon.

    Graness A, Adomeit A, Heinze R, Wetzker R and Liebmann C

    Institute of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Biological and Pharmaceutical Faculty, Friedrich Schiller University, Philosophenweg 12, D-07743 Jena, Germany.

    The signaling routes connecting G protein-coupled receptors to the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway reveal a high degree of complexity and cell specificity. In the human colon carcinoma cell line SW-480, we detected a mitogenic effect of bradykinin (BK) that is mediated via a pertussis toxin-insensitive G protein of the Gq/11 family and that involves activation of MAPK. Both BK-induced stimulation of DNA synthesis and activation of MAPK in response to BK were abolished by two different inhibitors of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), wortmannin and LY 294002, as well as by two different inhibitors of protein kinase C (PKC), bisindolylmaleimide and Ro 31-8220. Stimulation of SW-480 cells by BK led to increased formation of PI3K lipid products (phosphatidylinositol 3,4,5-trisphosphate and phosphatidylinositol 3, 4-bisphosphate) and to enhanced translocation of the PKCepsilon isoform from the cytosol to the membrane. Both effects of BK were inhibited by wortmannin, too. Using subtype-specific antibodies, only the PI3K subunits p110beta and p85, but not p110alpha and p110gamma, were detected in SW-480 cells. Finally, p110beta was found to be co-immunoprecipitated with PKCepsilon. Our data suggest that in SW-480 cells, (i) dimeric PI3Kbeta is activated via a Gq/11 protein; (ii) PKCepsilon is a downstream target of PI3Kbeta mediating the mitogenic signal to the MAPK pathway; and (iii) PKCepsilon associates with the p110 subunit of PI3Kbeta. Thus, these results add a novel possibility to the emerging picture of multiple pathways linking G protein-coupled receptors to MAPK.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1998;273;48;32016-22

  • Human immunodeficiency virus Tat protein induces interleukin 6 mRNA expression in human brain endothelial cells via protein kinase C- and cAMP-dependent protein kinase pathways.

    Zidovetzki R, Wang JL, Chen P, Jeyaseelan R and Hofman F

    Department of Biology and Neuroscience, University of California, Riverside 92521, USA.

    The intracellular signal transduction pathways utilized by the HIV-1-derived protein, Tat, in the activation of human central nervous system-derived endothelial cells (CNS-ECs) were examined using specific enzymatic assays. Tat induced an increase in interleukin 6 (IL-6) mRNA within 1 hr of treatment. This biological effect of Tat involved activation of both protein kinase C (PK-C) and cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PK-A) in CNS-ECs. Tat at 10 ng/ml induced a sharp, transient increase in membrane PK-C activity within 30 sec of incubation, and reached maximum levels at 2 min, declining to control values within 10 min. Tat also induced a sharp increase in intracellular cAMP levels and PK-A activity in these cells, with the PK-A activity reaching a maximum at 10 min and slowly declining to control values in 4 hr of incubation. Activation of PK-A was dependent on a Tat-induced increase in membrane PK-C activity as demonstrated by calphostin C (a PK-C inhibitor) abolishing this effect. Incubation of cells with the cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin did not affect Tat-induced activation of PK-A, indicating that prostacyclins are not involved in this process. Tat-induced increase in IL-6 mRNA was abolished in the presence on PK-A inhibitor H-89, demonstrating that activation of PK-A is necessary and sufficient for the increase in IL-6 production by these cells. Both the Tat-induced increase in intracellular cAMP and IL-6 mRNA levels in CNS-ECs may play a role in altering the blood-brain barrier and thereby inducing pathology often observed in AIDS dementia.

    Funded by: NINDS NIH HHS: NS33805

    AIDS research and human retroviruses 1998;14;10;825-33

  • Extracellular HIV-1 Tat protein induces a rapid and selective activation of protein kinase C (PKC)-alpha, and -epsilon and -zeta isoforms in PC12 cells.

    Borgatti P, Zauli G, Cantley LC and Capitani S

    Division of Signal Transduction, Harvard Institute of Medicine, Beth Israel Hospital, Boston, Massachusettes 02115, USA.

    The addition in culture of extracellular HIV-1 Tat protein (0.1-1 nM) to PC12 cells induced a rapid increase of the bulk protein kinase C (PKC) catalytic activity. Among various PKC isoforms (alpha, beta I, beta II, delta, epsilon, eta, theta, and zeta) expressed in PC12 cells, Tat selectively stimulated alpha, epsilon, and zeta, as judged by activities in immunoprecipitates. Activation of these isoforms was suppressed by the tyrosine kinase inhibitor genistein. Moreover, PKC-zeta showed the fastest kinetics of activation in response to Tat, but PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon showed the highest levels of activation. PKC-alpha activation was accompanied by a rise of intracellular IP3, while the PI 3-kinase inhibitors wortmannin and LY294002 suppressed PKC-epsilon activation. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that extracellular Tat shows a cytokine-like activity in PC12 cells, being able to trigger an intracellular signalling cascade which involves PKC-alpha, -epsilon, and -zeta.

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 1998;242;2;332-7

  • The coatomer protein beta'-COP, a selective binding protein (RACK) for protein kinase Cepsilon.

    Csukai M, Chen CH, De Matteis MA and Mochly-Rosen D

    Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305-5332, USA.

    Distinct subcellular localization of activated protein kinase C (PKC) isozymes is mediated by their binding to isozyme-specific RACKs (receptors for activated C-kinase). Our laboratory has previously isolated one such protein, RACK1, and demonstrated that this protein displays specificity for PKCbeta. We have recently shown that at least part of the PKCepsilon RACK-binding site on PKCepsilon lies within the unique V1 region of this isozyme (Johnson, J. A., Gray, M. O., Chen, C.-H., and Mochly-Rosen, D. (1996) J. Biol. Chem. 271, 24962-24966). Here, we have used the PKCepsilon V1 region to clone a PKCepsilon-selective RACK, which was identified as the COPI coatomer protein, beta'-COP. Similar to RACK1, beta'-COP contains seven repeats of the WD40 motif and fulfills the criteria previously established for RACKs. Activated PKCepsilon colocalizes with beta'-COP in cardiac myocytes and binds to Golgi membranes in a beta'-COP-dependent manner. A role for PKC in control of secretion has been previously suggested, but this is the first report of direct protein/protein interaction of PKCepsilon with a protein involved in vesicular trafficking.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL52141

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1997;272;46;29200-6

  • Calponin and mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling in differentiated vascular smooth muscle.

    Menice CB, Hulvershorn J, Adam LP, Wang CA and Morgan KG

    Signal Transduction Group, Boston Biomedical Research Institute, Boston, Massachusetts 02114, USA.

    Contraction of smooth muscle cells is generally assumed to require Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent phosphorylation of the 20-kDa myosin light chains. However, we report here that in the absence of extracellular calcium, phenylephrine induces a contraction of freshly isolated ferret aorta cells in the absence of increases in intracellular ionized calcium or light chain phosphorylation levels but in the presence of activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase. A protein at 36 kDa co-immunoprecipitated with the mitogen-activated protein kinase and was identified as the actin-binding protein, calponin, by immunoblot. An overlay assay further confirmed an interaction between the kinase and calponin, even though the kinase did not phosphorylate calponin in vitro. Calponin also co-immunoprecipitated from smooth muscle cells with protein kinase C-epsilon. High resolution digital confocal studies indicated that calponin redistributes to the cell membrane during phenylephrine stimulation at a time when mitogen-activated protein kinase and protein kinase C-epsilon are targeted to the plasmalemma. These results suggest a role for calponin as a signaling molecule, possibly an adapter protein, linking the targeting of mitogen-activated protein kinase and protein kinase C-epsilon to the surface membrane.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL31704, HL42293, HL56035; ...

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1997;272;40;25157-61

  • Protein-protein interaction of zinc finger LIM domains with protein kinase C.

    Kuroda S, Tokunaga C, Kiyohara Y, Higuchi O, Konishi H, Mizuno K, Gill GN and Kikkawa U

    Biosignal Research Center, Kobe University, Kobe 657, Japan. skuroda@inherit.biosig.kobe-u.ac.jp

    The LIM domain comprising two zinc-finger motifs is found in a variety of proteins and has been proposed to direct protein-protein interactions. During the identification of protein kinase C (PKC)-interacting proteins by a yeast two-hybrid assay, a novel protein containing three LIM domains, designated ENH, was shown to associate with PKC in an isoform-specific manner. Deletion analysis demonstrated that any single LIM domain of ENH associates with the NH2-terminal region of PKC. ENH associated with PKC in COS-7 cells and was phosphorylated by PKC in vitro. Upon treatment of the cells with phorbol ester, ENH in the membrane fraction was translocated to the cytosol fraction in vivo. Other LIM domain-containing proteins, such as Enigma and LIM-kinase 1, also interacted with PKC through their LIM domains. These results suggest that the LIM domain is one of the targets of PKC and that the LIM-PKC interaction may shed light on undefined roles of LIM domain-containing proteins.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1996;271;49;31029-32

  • In vitro phosphorylation of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 Tat protein by protein kinase C: evidence for the phosphorylation of amino acid residue serine-46.

    Holmes AM

    Biochemistry Department, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland 20814, USA.

    Human immunodeficiency virus type-1 Tat protein is phosphorylated by protein kinase C in a calcium-, diacylglycerol-, and phosphatidylserine-dependent manner. Maximum phosphorylation is reached at a stoichiometry of between 0.45 and 0.5 mol of phosphate per mol of Tat. Several Tat peptides, containing serine at position 46, are the only ones which are phosphorylated at significant rates. Several other Tat peptides containing potential protein kinase C phosphorylation sites are not phosphorylated.

    Archives of biochemistry and biophysics 1996;335;1;8-12

  • Galpha12 and galpha13 are phosphorylated during platelet activation.

    Offermanns S, Hu YH and Simon MI

    Division of Biology 147-75, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91125, USA.

    The ubiquitously expressed G-proteins G12 and G13 whose function is currently not clear have been shown to be activated in platelet membranes through receptors that stimulate platelet aggregation. We used intact human platelets to determine whether alpha subunits of both G-proteins can be phosphorylated under physiological conditions. Activation of human platelets by thrombin and the thromboxane A2 receptor agonist U46619 lead to phosphorylation of Galpha12 and Galpha13. Phosphorylation occurred rapidly after addition of thrombin and was not mediated by glycoprotein IIb/IIIa (integrin alphaIIbbeta3) activation. Phosphorylation of Galpha12 and Galpha13 could be mimicked by phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, and thrombin-induced phosphorylation was inhibited by the protein kinase C inhibitor calphostin C indicating an involvement of protein kinase C in Galpha12/13 phosphorylation induced by thrombin in human platelets. The phosphorylation of both G protein alpha subunits was reconstituted in COS-7 cells cotransfected with Galpha12 or Galpha13 and different protein kinase C isoforms. Among the protein knase C isoforms tested, protein kinase C beta, delta, and epsilon were most effective in promoting phosphorylation of Galpha12 and Galpha13 in a phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate-dependent manner. These data demonstrate that Galpha12 and Galpha13 are phosphorylated under in vivo conditions and that this phosphorylation involves protein kinase C.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1996;271;42;26044-8

  • Activation of the epidermal growth factor receptor signal transduction pathway stimulates tyrosine phosphorylation of protein kinase C delta.

    Denning MF, Dlugosz AA, Threadgill DW, Magnuson T and Yuspa SH

    Laboratory of Cellular Carcinogenesis and Tumor Promotion, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland 20892-4255, USA.

    The expression of an oncogenic rasHa gene in epidermal keratinocytes stimulates the tyrosine phosphorylation of protein kinase C delta and inhibits its enzymatic activity (Denning, M. F., Dlugosz, A. A., Howett, M. K., and Yuspa, S. H. (1993) J. Biol. Chem. 268, 26079-26081). Keratinocytes expressing an activated rasHa gene secrete transforming growth factor alpha (TGFalpha) and have an altered response to differentiation signals involving protein kinase C (PKC). Because the neoplastic phenotype of v-rasHa expressing keratinocytes can be partially mimicked in vitro by chronic treatment with TGF alpha and the G protein activator aluminum fluoride (AlF4-), we determined if TGF alpha or AlF4- could induce tyrosine phosphorylation of PKCdelta. Treatment of primary keratinocyte cultures for 4 days with TGFalpha induced tyrosine phosphorylation of PKCdelta, whereas AlF4- only slightly stimulated PKCdelta tyrosine phosphorylation. The PKCdelta that was tyrosine-phosphorylated in response to TGFalpha had reduced activity compared with the nontyrosine-phosphorylated PKCdelta. Treatment of keratinocytes expressing a normal epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) with TGFalpha or epidermal growth factor for 5 min induced PKCdelta tyrosine phosphorylation. This acute epidermal growth factor treatment did not induce tyrosine phosphorylation of PKCdelta in keratinocytes isolated from waved-2 mice that have a defective epidermal growth factor receptor. In addition, the level of PKCdelta tyrosine phosphorylation in v-rasHa-transduced keratinocytes from EGFR null mice was substantially lower than in v-rasHa transduced wild type cells, suggesting that activation of the EGFR is important for PKC delta tyrosine phosphorylation in ras transformation. However, purified EGFR did not phosphorylate recombinant PKC delta in vitro, whereas members of the Src family (c-Src, c-Fyn) and membrane preparations from keratinocytes did. Furthermore, clearing c-Src or c-Fyn from keratinocyte membrane lysates decreased PKCdelta tyrosine phosphorylation, and c-Src and c-Fyn isolated from keratinocytes treated with TGFalpha had increased kinase activity. Acute or chronic treatment with TGFalpha did not induce significant PKCdelta translocation in contrast to the phorbol ester 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate, which induced both translocation and tyrosine phosphorylation of PKCdelta. This suggests that TGFalpha-induced tyrosine phosphorylation of PKC delta results from the activation of a tyrosine kinase rather than physical association of PKCdelta with a membrane-anchored tyrosine kinase. Taken together, these results indicate that PKCdelta activity is inhibited by tyrosine phosphorylation in response to EGFR-mediated signaling and activation of a member of the Src kinase family may be the proximal tyrosine kinase acting on PKCdelta in keratinocytes.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1996;271;10;5325-31

  • Extracellular human immunodeficiency virus type 1 Tat protein is associated with an increase in both NF-kappa B binding and protein kinase C activity in primary human astrocytes.

    Conant K, Ma M, Nath A and Major EO

    Laboratory of Molecular Medicine and Neuroscience, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.

    Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection has been associated with an increase in the binding of the transcription factor NF-kappa B to its consensus sequence in the viral promoter. Using cultures of primary human fetal astrocytes, we show that exogenous HIV-1 Tat protein, which has been demonstrated to be released from infected cells, is associated with an increase in the binding of this transcription factor to an HIV-1 long terminal repeat kappa B sequence. This effect occurs rapidly and is independent of new protein synthesis. We also demonstrate that extracellular Tat protein is associated with an increase in protein kinase C activity. If Tat functions similarly in other cell types, such findings could relate to some of this protein's previously described physiological effects. These effects include Tat's ability to upregulate the synthesis of specific cytokines and to act as a growth factor.

    Journal of virology 1996;70;3;1384-9

  • IL-16- and other CD4 ligand-induced migration is dependent upon protein kinase C.

    Parada NA, Cruikshank WW, Danis HL, Ryan TC and Center DM

    Department of Medicine, Pulmonary Center, Boston University School of Medicine, MA 02118, USA.

    Human interleukin-16, previously known as lymphocyte chemoattractant factor, is a CD4+ T cell competence growth factor initially described as a chemotactic factor for CD4+ cells. The interaction between IL-16 and its receptor CD4 leads to an increase in intracytoplasmic calcium and inositol triphosphate. Because of the association of intracellular shifts in protein kinase C (PKC) enzyme activity with production of these secondary messengers and the participation of PKC in transducing certain receptor-mediated migratory signals, we investigated the role of PKC in the CD4-mediated migratory response by IL-16. Recombinant IL-16 induces rapid translocation of PKC from the cytosol to the membrane in three separate CD4+ cell types: normal blood T cells, SUPT1 cells, and THP1 cells. PKC inhibitors H7, calphostin C, chelerythrine, and bisindolylmaleimide completely block IL-16-induced lymphocyte migration as well as the motile response induced by HIV-1 gp120 and anti-CD4 antibodies. Taken together, these data suggest a role for PKC in CD4-mediated migratory responses.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: P50 HL46563, R01 HL32802

    Cellular immunology 1996;168;1;100-6

  • Identification and localization of an actin-binding motif that is unique to the epsilon isoform of protein kinase C and participates in the regulation of synaptic function.

    Prekeris R, Mayhew MW, Cooper JB and Terrian DM

    Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, East Carolina University School of Medicine, Greenville, North Carolina 27858, USA.

    Individual isoforms of the protein kinase C (PKC) family of kinases may have assumed distinct responsibilities for the control of complex and diverse cellular functions. In this study, we show that an isoform specific interaction between PKC epsilon and filamentous actin may serve as a necessary prelude to the enhancement of glutamate exocytosis from nerve terminals. Using a combination of cosedimentation, overlay, and direct binding assays, we demonstrate that filamentous actin is a principal anchoring protein for PKC epsilon within intact nerve endings. The unusual stability and direct nature of this physical interaction indicate that actin filaments represent a new class of PKC-binding protein. The binding of PKC epsilon to actin required that the kinase be activated, presumably to expose a cryptic binding site that we have identified and shown to be located between the first and second cysteine-rich regions within the regulatory domain of only this individual isoform of PKC. Arachidonic acid (AA) synergistically interacted with diacylglycerol to stimulate actin binding to PKC epsilon. Once established, this protein-protein interaction securely anchored PKC epsilon to the cytoskeletal matrix while also serving as a chaperone that maintained the kinase in a catalytically active conformation. Thus, actin appears to be a bifunctional anchoring protein that is specific for the PKC epsilon isoform. The assembly of this isoform-specific signaling complex appears to play a primary role in the PKC-dependent facilitation of glutamate exocytosis.

    The Journal of cell biology 1996;132;1-2;77-90

  • HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins induce activation of activated protein-1 in CD4+ T cells.

    Chirmule N, Goonewardena H, Pahwa S, Pasieka R, Kalyanaraman VS and Pahwa S

    Department of Pediatrics, North Shore University Hospital, Cornell University Medical College, Manhasset, New York 11030, USA.

    Activation of CD4 positive T cells is a primary requirement for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) entry, efficient HIV replication, and progression to AIDS, Utilizing CD4 positive T cell lines and purified T cells from normal individuals, we have demonstrated that native envelope glycoproteins of HIV, gp 160, can induce activation of transcription factor, activated protein-1 (AP-1). The stimulatory effects of gp160 are mediated through the CD4 molecule, since treatment of gp160 with soluble CD4-IgG abrogates its activity, and CD4 negative T cell lines fail to be stimulated with gp160. Immunoprecipitation of the gp 160-induced nuclear extracts with polyclonal antibodies to Fos and Jun proteins indicates that AP-1 complex is comprised of members of these family of proteins. The gp160-induced AP-1 complex is dependent upon protein tyrosine phosphorylation and is protein synthesis-independent. This stimulation can also be abolished by inhibitors of protein kinase C, but it is unaffected by calcium channel blocker or cyclosporine A. This gp160 treatment adversely affects the functional capabilities of T cells: pre-treatment of CD4+ T cells with gp160 for 4 h at 37 degrees C inhibited anti-CD3-induced interleukin-2 secretion. Effects similar to gp160 were seen with anti-CD4 mAb. The aberrant activation of AP-1 by gp160 in CD4 positive T cells could result in up-regulation of cytokines containing AP-1 sites, e.g. interleukin-3 and granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor, and concurrently lead to T cell unresponsiveness by inhibiting interleukin-2 secretion.

    Funded by: NCRR NIH HHS: MO1 RR 0047; NIAID NIH HHS: AI 28281, AI 35414

    The Journal of biological chemistry 1995;270;33;19364-9

  • Protein kinase C epsilon is localized to the Golgi via its zinc-finger domain and modulates Golgi function.

    Lehel C, Olah Z, Jakab G and Anderson WB

    Laboratory of Cellular Oncology, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Protein kinase C (PKC) is a multigene family of serine/threonine kinases that are central to many signal transduction pathways. Among the PKC isozymes, only PKC epsilon has been reported to exhibit full oncogenic potential. PKC epsilon also displays unique substrate specificity and intracellular localization. To examine the interrelationship between the biological effects and domain structure of PKC epsilon, NIH 3T3 cells were stably transfected to overexpress different epitope-tagged fragments of PKC epsilon. The overexpressed proteins each contain the epsilon-tag peptide at the C terminus to allow ready detection with an antibody specific for the tag. The holo-PKC epsilon was found to localize with the Golgi network and other compartments, whereas the zinc-finger domain localized exclusively at the Golgi. Golgi-specific glycosaminoglycan sulfation was strongly inhibited in cells overexpressing either holo-PKC epsilon or its zinc-finger domain, while the secretion of sulfated glycosaminoglycans into the medium was impaired in cells expressing the PKC epsilon zinc-finger domain. Thus, these results suggest that PKC epsilon may be involved in specifically regulating Golgi-related processes. Further, the results indicate that PKC epsilon domains other than the kinase domain may also have biological activity and that the zinc-finger domain may function as a subcellular localization signal.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 1995;92;5;1406-10

  • Inhibition of protein kinase C by a synthetic peptide corresponding to cytoplasmic domain residues 828-848 of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 envelope glycoprotein.

    Ward NE, Gravitt KR and O'Brian CA

    Department of Cell Biology, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston 77030.

    This report describes the inhibition of protein kinase C (PKC) by a synthetic peptide corresponding to a viral sequence expressed in mammalian cells. The peptide corresponds to cytoplasmic domain residues 828-848 of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) envelope glycoprotein (gp41), and it inhibits Ca(2+)- and phosphatidylserine (PS)-dependent phosphorylation of synthetic peptide substrates and histone by purified PKC with IC50 values ranging from 9 to 32 microM. Although previously described pKC-inhibitory synthetic peptides corresponding to sequences expressed in mammalian cells are also effective against the phosphorylation of synthetic peptide substrates, they fail to affect PKC-catalysed phosphorylation of potent protein substrates such as histone. This may limit their usefulness as inhibitors of PKC-catalysed protein phosphorylation in cellular systems. PKC activation is a major contributing factor in multidrug resistance (MDR) in cancer. Our observation that the synthetic peptide gp41(828-848) inhibits pKC-catalysed phosphorylation of a protein substrate suggests the potential value of expressing the viral sequence gp41(828-848) in cancer cells as a novel in vitro model system of MDR reversal.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA-52460

    Cancer letters 1995;88;1;37-40

  • Identification of the major physiologic phosphorylation site of human keratin 18: potential kinases and a role in filament reorganization.

    Ku NO and Omary MB

    Palo Alto Veterans Administration Medical Center, CA 94304.

    There is ample in vitro evidence that phosphorylation of intermediate filaments, including keratins, plays an important role in filament reorganization. In order to gain a better understanding of the function of intermediate filament phosphorylation, we sought to identify the major phosphorylation site of human keratin polypeptide 18 (K18) and study its role in filament assembly or reorganization. We generated a series of K18 ser-->ala mutations at potential phosphorylation sites, followed by expression in insect cells and comparison of the tryptic 32PO4-labeled patterns of the generated constructs. Using this approach, coupled with Edman degradation of the 32PO4-labeled tryptic peptides, and comparison with tryptic peptides analyzed after labeling normal human colonic tissues, we identified ser-52 as the major K18 physiologic phosphorylation site. Ser-52 in K18 is not glycosylated and matches consensus sequences for phosphorylation by CAM kinase, S6 kinase and protein kinase C, and all these kinases can phosphorylate K18 in vitro predominantly at that site. Expression of K18 ser-52-->ala mutant in mammalian cells showed minimal phosphorylation but no distinguishable difference in filament assembly when compared with wild-type K18. In contrast, the ser-52 mutation played a clear but nonexclusive role in filament reorganization, based on analysis of filament alterations in cells treated with okadaic acid or arrested at the G2/M stage of the cell cycle. Our results show that ser-52 is the major physiologic phosphorylation site of human K18 in interphase cells, and that its phosphorylation may play an in vivo role in filament reorganization.

    Funded by: NIAAA NIH HHS: AA0947A-01; NIDDK NIH HHS: DK38707

    The Journal of cell biology 1994;127;1;161-71

  • The pleckstrin homology domain of Bruton tyrosine kinase interacts with protein kinase C.

    Yao L, Kawakami Y and Kawakami T

    Division of Immunobiology, La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology, CA 92037.

    Bruton tyrosine kinase (EC [Btk, encoded by Btk in mice and BTK in humans (formerly known as atk, BPK, or emb)], which is variously mutated in chromosome X-linked agammaglobulinemia patients and X-linked immunodeficient (xid) mice, has the pleckstrin homology (PH) domain at its amino terminus. The PH domain of Btk expressed as a bacterial fusion protein directly interacts with protein kinase C in mast cell lysates. Evidence was obtained that Btk is physically associated with protein kinase C in intact murine mast cells as well. Both Ca(2+)-dependent (alpha, beta I, and beta II) and Ca(2+)-independent protein kinase C isoforms (epsilon and zeta) in mast cells interact with the PH domain of Btk in vitro, and protein kinase C beta I is associated with Btk in vivo. Btk served as a substrate of protein kinase C, and its enzymatic activity was down-regulated by protein kinase C-mediated phosphorylation. Furthermore, depletion or inhibition of protein kinase C with pharmacological agents resulted in an enhancement of the tyrosine phosphorylation of Btk induced by mast cell activation.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 1994;91;19

  • Rapid heterologous desensitization of muscarinic and thrombin receptor-mediated phospholipase D activation.

    Nieto M, Kennedy E, Goldstein D and Brown JH

    Department of Pharmacology, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla 92093.

    Activation of the M3 muscarinic receptor in 1321N1 human astrocytoma cells leads to increased phospholipase D (PLD)-catalyzed hydrolysis of phosphatidylcholine, which is maximal within 1 min of exposure to agonist. Studies examining the kinetics of phosphatidylethanol formation indicate that there is no further PLD activation beyond this time. Thrombin, a mitogen for quiescent 1321N1 cells, also activates PLD only transiently. The PLD response does not recover for up to 1 hr and cells that have been exposed to carbachol or thrombin do not respond to subsequent challenge with the heterologous agonist. In contrast to the desensitization observed with agonists, phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate induces a sustained stimulation of PLD. In addition, cells pretreated with carbachol or thrombin show a normal response to phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate, suggesting that the enzymatic activity of PLD is not compromised. Guanosine-5'-O-(3-thio)triphosphate activation of PLD in cell-free homogenates is also unaffected by prior treatment of the cells with agonist. Agonist-stimulated PLD activation in 1321N1 cells is mediated by protein kinase C (PKC). Thrombin and carbachol cause comparable changes in redistribution of both PKC-alpha and PKC-epsilon. The increase in membrane-associated PKC-alpha is transient and is reinitiated by addition of the heterologous agonist, whereas PKC-epsilon remains membrane associated for at least 60 min and is not further increased by addition of the heterologous agonist. We suggest that desensitization of PLD activation results from the down-regulation of an as yet undefined mediator required for agonist receptor coupling to PLD and that PKC-epsilon might participate in this down-regulation.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM36927

    Molecular pharmacology 1994;46;3;406-13

  • Human immunodeficiency virus-1 recombinant gp120 induces changes in protein kinase C isozymes--a preliminary report.

    Gupta S, Aggarwal S, Kim C and Gollapudi S

    Division of Basic and Clinical Immunology, University of California, Irvine 92717.

    Human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1) and its purified proteins activate target cell functions. Because protein kinase C (PKC) plays a crucial role in signal transduction and there is a molecular heterogeneity of PKC, we compared the effect of recombinant HIV-1 gp120 and phorbol ester (PMA) on PKC isozymes in monocytic U937 cells, with isozyme-specific antibodies using flow cytometry. All PKC isozymes except PKC-gamma were present in U937 cells. Both PMA and HIV-1 gp120 increased levels of calcium-dependent and -independent PKC isozymes. The most striking change was observed in PKC-zeta isozymes levels. This study for the first time demonstrates that HIV-1 gp120 affects calcium-independent PKC isozymes in U937 cells.

    International journal of immunopharmacology 1994;16;3;197-204

  • Overexpression of protein kinase C-epsilon enhances the stimulatory effect of ethanol on phospholipase C-mediated hydrolysis of phosphatidylethanolamine in NIH 3T3 fibroblasts.

    Kiss Z and Garamszegi N

    Hormel Institute, University of Minnesota, Austin 55912.

    Previously, ethanol and the protein kinase C (PKC) activators phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) and bombesin were shown to synergistically stimulate phospholipase C (PLC)-mediated hydrolysis of phosphatidylethanolamine (PtdEtn) in NIH 3T3 fibroblasts. Here we used fibroblasts overexpressing PKC-epsilon 15-fold to examine the possible role of this enzyme in the regulation of PtdEtn hydrolysis by ethanol. Overexpressed PKC-epsilon (i) greatly enhanced the stimulatory effects of ethanol (37.5-150 mM) on PLC-mediated PtdEtn hydrolysis, and (ii) eliminated the need for the co-presence of a PKC activator for maximal (3.3-fold) stimulation of PLC by 150 mM ethanol. Results suggest that PKC-epsilon is a potential positive regulator of the PtdEtn-hydrolyzing PLC activity, and that the functional interaction between PKC-epsilon and PLC is facilitated by ethanol.

    FEBS letters 1993;333;3;229-32

  • Interferon alpha induces protein kinase C-epsilon (PKC-epsilon) gene expression and a 4.7-kb PKC-epsilon-related transcript.

    Wang C, Constantinescu SN, MacEwan DJ, Strulovici B, Dekker LV, Parker PJ and Pfeffer LM

    Department of Pathology, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis 38163.

    Protein kinases play key roles in the induction by human interferon alpha (IFN-alpha) of specific gene expression and biological activity in various human cell lines. We now report that IFN-alpha increased the 7-kb transcript for the epsilon isotype of protein kinase C (PKC-epsilon) and the cellular content of PKC-epsilon 24 and 48 hr after IFN-alpha addition (a 2-fold and 6-fold increase, respectively). Furthermore, IFN-alpha markedly induced a 4.7-kb transcript that hybridized to a PKC-epsilon-specific, but not to a PKC-eta-specific, cDNA probe. The induction of the 4.7-kb PKC-epsilon-related mRNA by IFN-alpha had the following properties reported for the classical IFN-alpha-stimulated genes: rapid kinetics of induction, high maintained levels in IFN-alpha-sensitive but not in IFN-alpha-resistant cell lines, protein synthesis-independent induction, and high sensitivity to inhibitors of protein tyrosine kinase activity. These results show that the regulation of gene expression by IFN-alpha include not only the classical IFN-alpha-stimulated genes but also the coordinated regulation of two PKC-epsilon-related transcripts that appeared to be highly relevant to the biological actions of IFN-alpha.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM36716

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 1993;90;15;6944-8

  • Sequence and expression of human protein kinase C-epsilon.

    Basta P, Strickland MB, Holmes W, Loomis CR, Ballas LM and Burns DJ

    Sphinx Pharmaceuticals Corporation, Molecular Biology Section, Durham, NC 27717.

    Two human homologues of protein kinase C-epsilon (E1 and E2) were isolated from two distinct cDNA libraries. Sequence comparisons to PKC-epsilon cDNAs from several species indicated that each of these human epsilon clones contained cloning artifacts. Thus, a composite PKC-epsilon (E3) clone was derived from clones E1 and E2. Human PKC-epsilon (E3) has an overall sequence identity of 90-92% at the nucleotide level compared to the previously characterized mouse, rat and rabbit clones. At the amino acid level, the deduced human epsilon sequence shows a 98-99% identity with the mouse, rat and rabbit sequences. Expression of the human PKC-epsilon clone in Sf9 cells confirmed that the recombinant protein displayed protein kinase C activity and phorbol ester binding activity. The recombinant protein was also recognized by two distinct epsilon-specific polyclonal antibodies.

    Biochimica et biophysica acta 1992;1132;2;154-60

  • PKC epsilon-related kinase associates with and phosphorylates cytokeratin 8 and 18.

    Omary MB, Baxter GT, Chou CF, Riopel CL, Lin WY and Strulovici B

    Stanford University School of Medicine, Gastroenterology Division, California 94305.

    A 40-kD protein kinase C (PKC)epsilon related activity was found to associate with human epithelial specific cytokeratin (CK) polypeptides 8 and 18. The kinase activity coimmunoprecipitated with CK8 and 18 and phosphorylated immunoprecipitates of the CK. Immunoblot analysis of CK8/18 immunoprecipitates using an anti-PKC epsilon specific antibody showed that the 40-kD species, and not native PKC epsilon (90 kD) associated with the cytokeratins. Reconstitution experiments demonstrated that purified CK8 or CK18 associated with a 40-kD tryptic fragment of purified PKC epsilon, or with a similar species obtained from cells that express the fragment constitutively but do not express CK8/18. A peptide pseudosubstrate specific for PKC epsilon inhibited phosphorylation of CK8/18 in intact cells or in a kinase assay with CK8/18 immunoprecipitates. Tryptic peptide map analysis of the cytokeratins that were phosphorylated by purified rat brain PKC epsilon or as immunoprecipitates by the associated kinase showed similar phosphopeptides. Furthermore, PKC epsilon immunoreactive species and CK8/18 colocalized using immunofluorescent double staining. We propose that a kinase related to the catalytic fragment of PKC epsilon physically associates with and phosphorylates cytokeratins 8 and 18.

    The Journal of cell biology 1992;117;3;583-93

  • A synthetic peptide with sequence identity to the transmembrane protein GP41 of HIV-1 inhibits distinct lymphocyte activation pathways dependent on protein kinase C and intracellular calcium influx.

    Ruegg CL and Strand M

    Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland 21205.

    A synthetic peptide containing env amino acid (aa) sequence 581 to 597 of the transmembrane protein gp41 of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) was tested for its effect on protein kinase C (PKC) and cytoplasmic free Ca2+ [( Ca2+]i) influx-dependent immune functions. We have previously shown that this peptide inhibits PKC-mediated phosphorylation and T-cell receptor-mediated [Ca2+]i influx as well as lymphoproliferation. In this study we demonstrate that the HIV-1 gp41 peptide aa581-597 inhibits lymphoproliferation stimulated via the distinct T-cell-activation molecules CD3, CD2, and CD28, as well as direct stimulation mediated by phorbol ester combined with ionomycin. Further, aa581-597 inhibits both PKC-dependent interleukin 2 (IL 2) production and the [Ca2+]i influx-dependent but PKC-independent induction of IL 2 receptor expression. The HIV-1 gp41 peptide also induces dramatic morphologic changes in lymphocytes, characterized by cytoplasmic ballooning and the acquisition of adherence to plastic, and these changes are dependent on both the length and the temperature of exposure. The results of this study suggest that the HIV-1 gp41 sequence aa581-597 acts at multiple sites to inhibit both PKC activity and [Ca2+]i influx, resulting in the abrogation of several distinct immune functions that are critical for an intact immune response and are defective in HIV-1-infected individuals.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA-09243; NIAID NIH HHS: AI-28206

    Cellular immunology 1991;137;1;1-13

  • Inhibition of protein kinase C and anti-CD3-induced Ca2+ influx in Jurkat T cells by a synthetic peptide with sequence identity to HIV-1 gp41.

    Ruegg CL and Strand M

    Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205.

    We have previously shown that a synthetic peptide containing env residues 581-597 from HIV-1 inhibits lymphoproliferation of human PBMC. We have investigated the molecular mechanism(s) by which this HIV-1-derived peptide inhibits CD3-mediated signal transduction. We show that the peptide containing residues 581-597 from the HIV-1 transmembrane protein gp41 specifically inhibited the intracellular Ca2+ influx in Jurkat cells stimulated by the mAb OKT3 whereas it had no effect on the production of inositol triphosphate. In addition, the peptide inhibited protein kinase C (pkC)-mediated phosphorylation of the CD3 gamma-chain in intact cells and directly inhibited partially purified pkC. The inhibition was noncompetitive with respect to the substrates histone and ATP and independent of the regulatory domain of the enzyme. Furthermore, the peptide required internalization for inhibitory activity because no inhibition of lymphoproliferation was observed when cells were treated with peptide at 4 degrees C. Based on these results obtained with the peptide aa581-597, we postulate that the transmembrane protein gp41 of HIV-1 may inhibit pkC activity and thus block pkC-dependent immune function contributing to the immunosuppression of HIV-1-infected individuals.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA-09243; NIAID NIH HHS: AI-28206

    Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950) 1990;144;10;3928-35

  • The phorbol ester TPA strongly inhibits HIV-1-induced syncytia formation but enhances virus production: possible involvement of protein kinase C pathway.

    Chowdhury IH, Koyanagi Y, Kobayashi S, Hamamoto Y, Yoshiyama H, Yoshida T and Yamamoto N

    Department of Virology and Parasitology, Yamaguchi University School of Medicine, Japan.

    Cocultivation of MOLT-4 and MOLT-4/HIVHTLV-IIIB cells with more than 0.01 ng/ml of 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA) for 20 hr strikingly inhibited HIV-induced syncytia formation resulting from cell to cell infection. Interestingly, the production of HIV-specific p24 antigen in the culture fluid was significantly enhanced by TPA. TPA down-modulated the expression of CD4. CD4 is essential for syncytia formation through interaction with viral envelope protein gp120 on the surface of MOLT-4 cells. The effects of TPA on syncytia formation and on CD4 expression were specifically interfered with by nontoxic doses of blockers of protein kinase C (PKC) such as staurosporine and H7. These data suggest that (1) TPA inhibits HIV-induced syncytia formation through down-modulation of CD4 molecules on the surface of MOLT-4 cells and (2) PKC may play an important role in cell to cell as well as in cell-free infection of HIV.

    Virology 1990;176;1;126-32

  • Trans-activation of HIV-1 LTR-directed gene expression by tat requires protein kinase C.

    Jakobovits A, Rosenthal A and Capon DJ

    Department of Molecular Biology, Genentech, Inc., South San Francisco, CA 94080.

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) spends a significant part of the viral life cycle as a latent provirus integrated into the host genome. Activation of latent HIV-1 requires mitogenic stimulation of the cell, which increases basal viral transcription, and the HIV-1 tat protein. As tat itself dramatically increases HIV-1 gene expression, it too is presumably regulated in the latent state, and may also be activated by mitogenic stimulation. We show here that depletion of protein kinase C (PKC), which is essential to the stimulation of T cells by several mitogens, dramatically reduces HIV-1 transactivation without affecting synthesis of tat protein. Transactivation in PKC-depleted cells can be restored by transfection with a PKC expression vector. The requirement for PKC in trans-activation does not involve the PMA-responsive enhancer elements responsible for the effect of mitogens on basal transcription. Our results indicate that PKC regulates the process of HIV-1 transactivation, suggesting a key role for the mitogenic induction of trans-activation in the transition of HIV from latency to productive growth.

    The EMBO journal 1990;9;4;1165-70

  • Human immunodeficiency virus induces phosphorylation of its cell surface receptor.

    Fields AP, Bednarik DP, Hess A and May WS

    Johns Hopkins Oncology Center, Baltimore, Maryland 21231.

    AIDS is an immunoregulatory disorder characterized by depletion of the CD4+, helper/inducer lymphocyte population. The causative agent of this disease is the human immunodeficiency virus, HIV, which infects CD4+ cells and leads to cytopathic effects characterized by syncytia formation and cell death. Recent studies have demonstrated that binding of HIV to its cellular receptor CD4 is necessary for viral entry. We find that binding of HIV to CD4 induces rapid and sustained phosphorylation of CD4 which could involve protein kinase C. HIV-induced CD4 phosphorylation can be blocked by antibody against CD4 and monoclonal antibody against the HIV envelope glycoprotein gp120, indicating that a specific interaction between CD4 and gp120 is required for phosphorylation. Electron microscopy shows that a protein kinase C inhibitor does not impair binding of HIV to CD4+ cells, but causes an apparent accumulation of virus particles at the cell surface, at the same time inhibiting viral infectivity. These results indicate a possible role for HIV-induced CD4 phosphorylation in viral entry and identify a potential target for antiviral therapy.

    Nature 1988;333;6170;278-80

Gene lists (6)

Gene List Source Species Name Description Gene count
L00000009 G2C Homo sapiens Human PSD Human orthologues of mouse PSD adapted from Collins et al (2006) 1080
L00000015 G2C Homo sapiens Human NRC Human orthologues of mouse NRC adapted from Collins et al (2006) 186
L00000016 G2C Homo sapiens Human PSP Human orthologues of mouse PSP adapted from Collins et al (2006) 1121
L00000034 G2C Homo sapiens Pocklington H3 Human orthologues of cluster 3 (mouse) from Pocklington et al (2006) 30
L00000069 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-HUMAN-PSD-FULL Human cortex biopsy PSD full list 1461
L00000071 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-MOUSE-PSD-FULL Mouse cortex PSD full list (ortho) 1556
© G2C 2014. The Genes to Cognition Programme received funding from The Wellcome Trust and the EU FP7 Framework Programmes:
EUROSPIN (FP7-HEALTH-241498), SynSys (FP7-HEALTH-242167) and GENCODYS (FP7-HEALTH-241995).

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