Regulation of Skp2 levels by the Pim-1 protein kinase.
ABSTRACT The Pim-1 protein kinase plays an important role in regulating both cell growth and survival and enhancing transformation by multiple oncogenes. The ability of Pim-1 to regulate cell growth is mediated, in part, by the capacity of this protein kinase to control the levels of the p27, a protein that is a critical regulator of cyclin-dependent kinases that mediate cell cycle progression. To understand how Pim-1 is capable of regulating p27 protein levels, we focused our attention on the SCF(Skp2) ubiquitin ligase complex that controls the rate of degradation of this protein. We found that expression of Pim-1 increases the level of Skp2 through direct binding and phosphorylation of multiple sites on this protein. Along with known Skp2 phosphorylation sites including Ser(64) and Ser(72), we have identified Thr(417) as a unique Pim-1 phosphorylation target. Phosphorylation of Thr(417) controls the stability of Skp2 and its ability to degrade p27. Additionally, we found that Pim-1 regulates the anaphase-promoting complex or cyclosome (APC/C complex) that mediates the ubiquitination of Skp2. Pim-1 phosphorylates Cdh1 and impairs binding of this protein to another APC/C complex member, CDC27. These modifications inhibit Skp2 from degradation. Marked increases in Skp2 caused by these mechanisms lower cellular p27 levels. Consistent with these observations, we show that Pim-1 is able to cooperate with Skp2 to signal S phase entry. Our data reveal a novel Pim-1 kinase-dependent signaling pathway that plays a crucial role in cell cycle regulation.
SourceAvailable from: Hem Chandra Jha[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), a ubiquitous human herpesvirus, can latently infect the human population. EBV is associated with several types of malignancies originating from lymphoid and epithelial cell types. EBV latent antigen 3C (EBNA3C) is essential for EBV-induced immortalization of B-cells. The Moloney murine leukemia provirus integration site (PIM-1), which encodes an oncogenic serine/threonine kinase, is linked to several cellular functions involving cell survival, proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. Notably, enhanced expression of Pim-1 kinase is associated with numerous hematological and non-hematological malignancies. A higher expression level of Pim-1 kinase is associated with EBV infection, suggesting a crucial role for Pim-1 in EBV-induced tumorigenesis. We now demonstrate a molecular mechanism which reveals a direct role for EBNA3C in enhancing Pim-1 expression in EBV-infected primary B-cells. We also showed that EBNA3C is physically associated with Pim-1 through its amino-terminal domain, and also forms a molecular complex in B-cells. EBNA3C can stabilize Pim-1 through abrogation of the proteasome/Ubiquitin pathway. Our results demonstrate that EBNA3C enhances Pim-1 mediated phosphorylation of p21 at the Thr145 residue. EBNA3C also facilitated the nuclear localization of Pim-1, and promoted EBV transformed cell proliferation by altering Pim-1 mediated regulation of the activity of the cell-cycle inhibitor p21/WAF1. Our study demonstrated that EBNA3C significantly induces Pim-1 mediated proteosomal degradation of p21. A significant reduction in cell proliferation of EBV-transformed LCLs was observed upon stable knockdown of Pim-1. This study describes a critical role for the oncoprotein Pim-1 in EBV-mediated oncogenesis, as well as provides novel insights into oncogenic kinase-targeted therapeutic intervention of EBV-associated cancers.PLoS Pathogens 08/2014; 2014 Aug 14;10(8):e1004304. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004304. eCollection 2014 Aug.. DOI:10.1371/journal.ppat.1004304 · 8.14 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Cardiac fibroblast hyperplasia associated with enhanced matrix deposition is a major determinant of tissue remodeling in several disease states of the heart. However, mechanisms controlling cell cycle progression in cardiac fibroblasts remain unexplored. Identification of cell cycle regulatory elements in these cells is important to develop strategies to check adverse cardiac remodeling under pathological conditions. This study sought to probe the mechanisms underlying ERK1/2-mediated p27(Kip1) regulation in mitogenically-stimulated cardiac fibroblasts. Addition of 10% fetal calf serum to quiescent cultures of adult rat cardiac fibroblasts promoted ERK1/2 activation, as evidenced by its phosphorylation status. Reduction in [(3)H]-thymidine incorporation into DNA, increased population doubling time, flow cytometry and western blot analysis showing reduced levels of cyclins D and A, p27(Kip1) induction and Rb hypophosphorylation in ERK1/2-inhibited cells indicated ERK1/2-dependence of G1/S transition in cardiac fibroblasts. Lack of p27(Kip1) protein in serum-stimulated, ERK1/2-active cells was associated with increased levels of Skp2, an E3 ubiquitin ligase for p27(Kip1), whose knockdown by RNA interference induced p27(Kip1) expression. Further, forced expression of Skp2 in ERK1/2-inhibited cells down-regulated p27Kip1. Transcriptional up-regulation of p27(Kip1) mRNA in ERK1/2-inhibited cells, demonstrated by Real time PCR, correlated with FOXO3a transcription factor activation, shown by gel shift assay. FOXO3a knockdown attenuated p27(Kip1) mRNA and protein expression in ERK1/2-inhibited cells. We provide evidence for the first time that, in cardiac fibroblasts, activated ERK1/2 regulates p27(Kip1) expression transcriptionally and post-translationally via FOXO3a- and Skp2-dependent mechanisms. Additionally, this study uncovers interesting interactions between critical cell cycle regulatory elements that are only beginning to be understood.AJP Heart and Circulatory Physiology 01/2014; 306(6). DOI:10.1152/ajpheart.00933.2013 · 4.01 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: MET, the receptor for hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) plays an important role in signaling normal and tumor cell migration and invasion. Here, we describe a previously unrecognized mechanism that promotes MET expression in multiple tumor cell types. The levels of the Pim-1 protein kinase show a positive correlation with the levels of MET protein in human tumor cell lines and patient-derived tumor materials. Using siRNA, Pim knock-out mice, small molecule inhibitors, and overexpression of Pim-1 we confirmed this correlation and found that Pim-1 kinase activity regulates HGF-induced tumor cell migration, invasion, and cell scattering. The novel biochemical mechanism for these effects involves the ability of Pim-1 to control the translation of MET by regulating the phosphorylation of eIF4B on S406. This targeted phosphorylation is required for the binding of eIF4B to the eIF3 translation initiation complex. Importantly, Pim-1 action was validated by the evaluation of patient blood and bone marrow from a Phase I clinical trial of a Pim kinase inhibitor AZD1208. These results suggest that Pim inhibitors may have an important role in the treatment of patients where MET is driving tumor biology.Molecular and Cellular Biology 04/2014; 34(13). DOI:10.1128/MCB.00147-14 · 5.04 Impact Factor