Inducible NO synthase: role in cellular signalling. (1/5093)

The discovery of endothelium-derived relaxing factor and its identification as nitric oxide (NO) was one of the most exciting discoveries of biomedical research in the 1980s. Besides its potent vasodilatory effects, NO was found under certain circumstances to be responsible for the killing of microorganisms and tumour cells by activated macrophages and to act as a novel, unconventional type of neurotransmitter. In 1992, Science picked NO as the 'Molecule of the Year', and over the past years NO has become established as a universal intercellular messenger that acutely affects important signalling pathways and, on a more long-term scale, modulates gene expression in target cells. These actions will form the focus of the present review.  (+info)

Activation of Src in human breast tumor cell lines: elevated levels of phosphotyrosine phosphatase activity that preferentially recognizes the Src carboxy terminal negative regulatory tyrosine 530. (2/5093)

Elevated levels of Src kinase activity have been reported in a number of human cancers, including colon and breast cancer. We have analysed four human breast tumor cell lines that exhibit high levels of Src kinase activity, and have determined that these cell lines also exhibit a high level of a phosphotyrosine phosphatase activity that recognizes the Src carboxy-terminal P-Tyr530 negative regulatory site. Total Src kinase activity in these cell lines is elevated as much as 30-fold over activity in normal control cells and specific activity is elevated as much as 5.6-fold. When the breast tumor cells were grown in the presence of the tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor vanadate, Src kinase activity was reduced in all four breast tumor cell lines, suggesting that Src was being activated by a phosphatase which could recognize the Tyr530 negative regulatory site. In fractionated cell extracts from the breast tumor cells, we found elevated levels of a membrane associated tyrosine phosphatase activity that preferentially dephosphorylated a Src family carboxy-terminal phosphopeptide containing the regulatory tyrosine 530 site. Src was hypophosphorylated in vivo at tyrosine 530 in at least two of the tumor cell lines, further suggesting that Src was being activated by a phosphatase in these cells. In preliminary immunoprecipitation and antibody depletion experiments, we were unable to correlate the major portion of this phosphatase activity with several known phosphatases.  (+info)

The MAP kinase ERK2 inhibits the cyclic AMP-specific phosphodiesterase HSPDE4D3 by phosphorylating it at Ser579. (3/5093)

The extracellular receptor stimulated kinase ERK2 (p42(MAPK))-phosphorylated human cAMP-specific phosphodiesterase PDE4D3 at Ser579 and profoundly reduced ( approximately 75%) its activity. These effects could be reversed by the action of protein phosphatase PP1. The inhibitory state of PDE4D3, engendered by ERK2 phosphorylation, was mimicked by the Ser579-->Asp mutant form of PDE4D3. In COS1 cells transfected to express PDE4D3, challenge with epidermal growth factor (EGF) caused the phosphorylation and inhibition of PDE4D3. This effect was blocked by the MEK inhibitor PD98059 and was not apparent using the Ser579-->Ala mutant form of PDE4D3. Challenge of HEK293 and F442A cells with EGF led to the PD98059-ablatable inhibition of endogenous PDE4D3 and PDE4D5 activities. EGF challenge of COS1 cells transfected to express PDE4D3 increased cAMP levels through a process ablated by PD98059. The activity of the Ser579-->Asp mutant form of PDE4D3 was increased by PKA phosphorylation. The transient form of the EGF-induced inhibition of PDE4D3 is thus suggested to be due to feedback regulation by PKA causing the ablation of the ERK2-induced inhibition of PDE4D3. We identify a novel means of cross-talk between the cAMP and ERK signalling pathways whereby cell stimuli that lead to ERK2 activation may modulate cAMP signalling.  (+info)

All-trans-retinoic acid inhibits Jun N-terminal kinase by increasing dual-specificity phosphatase activity. (4/5093)

Jun N-terminal kinases (JNKs) are serine-threonine kinases that play a critical role in the regulation of cell growth and differentiation. We previously observed that JNK activity is suppressed by all-trans-retinoic acid (t-RA), a ligand for retinoic acid nuclear receptors (RARs), in normal human bronchial epithelial cells, which are growth inhibited by t-RA. In this study, we investigated the mechanism by which t-RA inhibits JNK and the possibility that this signaling event is blocked in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. Virtually all NSCLC cell lines are resistant to the growth-inhibitory effects of t-RA, and a subset of them have a transcriptional defect specific to retinoid nuclear receptors. We found that in NSCLC cells expressing functional retinoid receptors, serum-induced JNK phosphorylation and activity were inhibited by t-RA in a bimodal pattern, transiently within 30 min and in a sustained fashion beginning at 12 h. Retinoid receptor transcriptional activation was required for the late, but not the early, suppression of JNK activity. t-RA inhibited serum-induced JNK activity by blocking mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase kinase 4-induced signaling events. This effect of t-RA was phosphatase dependent and involved an increase in the expression of the dual-specificity MAP kinase phosphatase 1 (MKP-1). t-RA did not activate MKP-1 expression or inhibit JNK activity in a NSCLC cell line with retinoid receptors that are refractory to ligand-induced transcriptional activation. These findings provide the first evidence that t-RA suppresses JNK activity by inhibiting JNK phosphorylation. Retinoid receptor transcriptional activation was necessary for the sustained inhibition of JNK activity by t-RA, and this signaling event was disrupted in NSCLC cells with retinoid receptors that are refractory to ligand-induced transcriptional activation.  (+info)

The yeast ser/thr phosphatases sit4 and ppz1 play opposite roles in regulation of the cell cycle. (5/5093)

Yeast cells overexpressing the Ser/Thr protein phosphatase Ppz1 display a slow-growth phenotype. These cells recover slowly from alpha-factor or nutrient depletion-induced G1 arrest, showing a considerable delay in bud emergence as well as in the expression of the G1 cyclins Cln2 and Clb5. Therefore, an excess of the Ppz1 phosphatase interferes with the normal transition from G1 to S phase. The growth defect is rescued by overexpression of the HAL3/SIS2 gene, encoding a negative regulator of Ppz1. High-copy-number expression of HAL3/SIS2 has been reported to improve cell growth and to increase expression of G1 cyclins in sit4 phosphatase mutants. We show here that the described effects of HAL3/SIS2 on sit4 mutants are fully mediated by the Ppz1 phosphatase. The growth defect caused by overexpression of PPZ1 is intensified in strains with low G1 cyclin levels (such as bck2Delta or cln3Delta mutants), whereas mutation of PPZ1 rescues the synthetic lethal phenotype of sit4 cln3 mutants. These results reveal a role for Ppz1 as a regulatory component of the yeast cell cycle, reinforce the notion that Hal3/Sis2 serves as a negative modulator of the biological functions of Ppz1, and indicate that the Sit4 and Ppz1 Ser/Thr phosphatases play opposite roles in control of the G1/S transition.  (+info)

Purification and identification of a novel subunit of protein serine/threonine phosphatase 4. (6/5093)

The catalytic subunit of protein serine/threonine phosphatase 4 (PP4C) has greater than 65% amino acid identity to the catalytic subunit of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2AC). Despite this high homology, PP4 does not appear to associate with known PP2A regulatory subunits. As a first step toward characterization of PP4 holoenzymes and identification of putative PP4 regulatory subunits, PP4 was purified from bovine testis soluble extracts. PP4 existed in two complexes of approximately 270-300 and 400-450 kDa as determined by gel filtration chromatography. The smaller PP4 complex was purified by sequential phenyl-Sepharose, Source 15Q, DEAE2, and Superdex 200 gel filtration chromatographies. The final product contained two major proteins: the PP4 catalytic subunit plus a protein that migrated as a doublet of 120-125 kDa on SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The associated protein, termed PP4R1, and PP4C also bound to microcystin-Sepharose. Mass spectrometry analysis of the purified complex revealed two major peaks, at 35 (PP4C) and 105 kDa (PP4R1). Amino acid sequence information of several peptides derived from the 105 kDa protein was utilized to isolate a human cDNA clone. Analysis of the predicted amino acid sequence revealed 13 nonidentical repeats similar to repeats found in the A subunit of PP2A (PP2AA). The PP4R1 cDNA clone engineered with an N-terminal Myc tag was expressed in COS M6 cells and PP4C co-immunoprecipitated with Myc-tagged PP4R1. These data indicate that one form of PP4 is similar to the core complex of PP2A in that it consists of a catalytic subunit and a "PP2AA-like" structural subunit.  (+info)

Caffeine can override the S-M checkpoint in fission yeast. (7/5093)

The replication checkpoint (or 'S-M checkpoint') control prevents progression into mitosis when DNA replication is incomplete. Caffeine has been known for some time to have the capacity to override the S-M checkpoint in animal cells. We show here that caffeine also disrupts the S-M checkpoint in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe. By contrast, no comparable effects of caffeine on the S. pombe DNA damage checkpoint were seen. S. pombe cells arrested in early S phase and then exposed to caffeine lost viability rapidly as they attempted to enter mitosis, which was accompanied by tyrosine dephosphorylation of Cdc2. Despite this, the caffeine-induced loss of viability was not blocked in a temperature-sensitive cdc2 mutant incubated at the restrictive temperature, although catastrophic mitosis was prevented under these conditions. This suggests that, in addition to S-M checkpoint control, a caffeine-sensitive function may be important for maintenance of cell viability during S phase arrest. The lethality of a combination of caffeine with the DNA replication inhibitor hydroxyurea was suppressed by overexpression of Cds1 or Chk1, protein kinases previously implicated in S-M checkpoint control and recovery from S phase arrest. In addition, the same combination of drugs was specifically tolerated in cells overexpressing either of two novel S. pombe genes isolated in a cDNA library screen. These findings should allow further molecular investigation of the regulation of S phase arrest, and may provide a useful system with which to identify novel drugs that specifically abrogate the checkpoint control.  (+info)

Activation of myosin phosphatase targeting subunit by mitosis-specific phosphorylation. (8/5093)

It has been demonstrated previously that during mitosis the sites of myosin phosphorylation are switched between the inhibitory sites, Ser 1/2, and the activation sites, Ser 19/Thr 18 (Yamakita, Y., S. Yamashiro, and F. Matsumura. 1994. J. Cell Biol. 124:129- 137; Satterwhite, L.L., M.J. Lohka, K.L. Wilson, T.Y. Scherson, L.J. Cisek, J.L. Corden, and T.D. Pollard. 1992. J. Cell Biol. 118:595-605), suggesting a regulatory role of myosin phosphorylation in cell division. To explore the function of myosin phosphatase in cell division, the possibility that myosin phosphatase activity may be altered during cell division was examined. We have found that the myosin phosphatase targeting subunit (MYPT) undergoes mitosis-specific phosphorylation and that the phosphorylation is reversed during cytokinesis. MYPT phosphorylated either in vivo or in vitro in the mitosis-specific way showed higher binding to myosin II (two- to threefold) compared to MYPT from cells in interphase. Furthermore, the activity of myosin phosphatase was increased more than twice and it is suggested this reflected the increased affinity of myosin binding. These results indicate the presence of a unique positive regulatory mechanism for myosin phosphatase in cell division. The activation of myosin phosphatase during mitosis would enhance dephosphorylation of the myosin regulatory light chain, thereby leading to the disassembly of stress fibers during prophase. The mitosis-specific effect of phosphorylation is lost on exit from mitosis, and the resultant increase in myosin phosphorylation may act as a signal to activate cytokinesis.  (+info)