Aurora A moonlights in neurite extension.
ABSTRACT Aurora A, an integral mitotic kinase, is essential for microtubule dynamics of post-mitotic neurons. PKCzeta activates Aurora A, which in turn phosphorylates NDEL1 to promote neurite extension. This raises the possibility that Aurora A may also be involved in establishing cell polarity and axon/dendrite elaboration in young neurons.
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ABSTRACT: Nuclear distribution element-like 1 (Ndel1 or Nudel) was firstly described as a regulator of the cytoskeleton in microtubule and intermediate filament dynamics and microtubule-based transport. Emerging evidence indicates that Ndel1 also serves as a docking platform for signaling proteins and modulates enzymatic activities (kinase, ATPase, oligopeptidase, GTPase). Through these structural and signaling functions, Ndel1 plays a role in diverse cellular processes (e.g., mitosis, neurogenesis, neurite outgrowth, and neuronal migration). Furthermore, Ndel1 is linked to the etiology of various mental illnesses and neurodegenerative disorders. In the present review, we summarize the physiological and pathological functions associated with Ndel1. We further advance the concept that Ndel1 interfaces GTPases-mediated processes (endocytosis, vesicles morphogenesis/signaling) and cytoskeletal dynamics to impact cell signaling and behaviors. This putative mechanism may affect cellular functionalities and may contribute to shed light into the causes of devastating human diseases.Cytoskeleton 10/2011; 68(10):540-54. DOI:10.1002/cm.20532 · 3.01 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: For more than 15 years, TPX2 has been studied as a factor critical for mitosis and spindle assembly. These functions of TPX2 are attributed to its Ran-regulated microtubule-associated protein properties and to its control of the Aurora A kinase. Overexpressed in cancers, TPX2 is being established as marker for the diagnosis and prognosis of malignancies. During interphase, TPX2 resides preferentially in the nucleus where its function had remained elusive until recently. The latest finding that TPX2 plays a role in amplification of the DNA damage response, combined with the characterization of TPX2 knockout mice, open new perspectives to understand the biology of this protein. This review provides an historic overview of the discovery of TPX2 and summarizes its cytoskeletal and signaling roles with relevance to cancer therapies. Finally, the review aims to reconcile discrepancies between the experimental and pathological effects of TPX2 overexpression and advances new roles for compartmentalized TPX2.Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences CMLS 02/2014; DOI:10.1007/s00018-014-1582-7 · 5.86 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Introduction: Based on its role as a mitotic regulatory kinase, overexpressed and associated with aneuploidy in cancer, small-molecule inhibitors have been developed for Aurora-A (AURKA) kinase. In preclinical and clinical assessments, these agents have shown efficacy in inducing stable disease or therapeutic response. In optimizing the use of Aurora-A inhibitors, it is critical to have robust capacity to measure the kinase activity of Aurora-A in tumors. Areas covered: We provide an overview of molecular mechanisms of mitotic and non-mitotic activation of Aurora-A kinase, and interaction of Aurora-A with its regulatory partners. Typically, Aurora-A activity is measured by use of phospho-antibodies targeting an autophosphorylated T288 epitope. However, recent studies have identified alternative means of Aurora-A activation control, including allosteric regulation by partners, phosphorylation on alternative activating residues (S51, S98), dephosphorylation on inhibitory sites (S342) and T288 phosphorylation by alternative kinases such as Pak enzymes. Additional work has shown that the relative abundance of Aurora-A partners can affect the activity of Aurora-A inhibitors, and that Aurora-A activation also occurs in interphase cells. Expert opinion: Taken together, this work suggests the need for comprehensive analysis of Aurora-A activity and expression of Aurora-A partners in order to stratify patients for likely therapeutic response.Expert Opinion on Therapeutic Targets 11/2014; 19(2):1-14. DOI:10.1517/14728222.2014.981154 · 4.90 Impact Factor