Increased PDZ-RhoGEF/RhoA/Rho kinase signaling in small mesenteric arteries of angiotensin II-induced hypertensive rats.
ABSTRACT The phosphorylation of myosin light chain (MLC) maintains the contracted state of vascular smooth muscle. Dephosphorylation results in relaxation and is determined by the activity of myosin light chain phosphatase (MLCP), which is negatively regulated by Rho kinase.
We tested whether an increased Rho kinase activity, and hence a decreased contribution of MLCP, results in an increased contractility of small fourth-order mesenteric arteries (MA) during the early onset of angiotensin II (Ang II)-induced hypertension (Ang II-14d).
Calcium sensitivity was similar, but contractile tension in response to [Ca]ex (5 mmol/l) in endothelium-denuded and depolarized MA was greater, in Ang II-14d rats compared to sham-operated normotensive (SHAM) and Ang II-1d. The Rho kinase inhibitor Y-27,632 caused a significantly greater inhibition of the contractile response to various agents (phenylephrine, norepinephrine, U46,619 and K) in MA of Ang II-14d compared to SHAM. Protein expression levels of the GDP/GTP exchange factor PDZ-RhoGEF, which co-immunoprecipitated with RhoA, were increased in MA of Ang II-14d compared to SHAM. RhoA translocation was greater in U46,619 (1 micromol/l)-stimulated MA of Ang II-14d compared to SHAM. Expression levels of Rho kinase beta were higher in MA of Ang II-14d. The MLCP inhibitor calyculin A (100 nmol/l) caused a greater contraction in MA of SHAM compared to Ang II-14d. Phosphorylation of the target subunit of MLCP (MYPT1) was enhanced in U46,619-stimulated MA of Ang II-14d compared to SHAM.
This is the first study demonstrating enhanced PDZ-RhoGEF/RhoA/Rho kinase signaling during hypertension at the level of resistance-sized arteries. This enhanced signaling leads to increased MLCP phosphorylation, resulting in vascular hyper-reactivity.
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ABSTRACT: Ras homolog gene family member A (RhoA)/Rho-kinase-mediated Ca(2+) sensitization is a critical component of constrictor responses. The present study investigates how angiotensin II activates RhoA. Adenoviral vectors were used to manipulate the expression of regulator of G protein signaling (RGS) domain containing Rho-specific guanine exchange factors (RhoGEFs) and proline-rich tyrosine kinase 2 (PYK2), a nonreceptor tyrosine kinase, in primary rat vascular smooth muscle cells. As an evidence of RhoA activation, RhoA translocation and MYPT1 (the regulatory subunit of myosin light chain phosphatase) phosphorylation were analyzed by Western blot. Results showed that overexpression of PDZ-RhoGEF, but not p115-RhoGEF or leukemia-associated RhoGEF (LARG), enhanced RhoA activation by angiotensin II. Knockdown of PDZ-RhoGEF decreased RhoA activation by angiotensin II. PDZ-RhoGEF was phosphorylated and activated by PYK2 in vitro, and knockdown of PDZ-RhoGEF reduced RhoA activation by constitutively active PYK2, indicating that PDZ-RhoGEF links PYK2 to RhoA. Knockdown of PYK2 or PDZ-RhoGEF markedly decreased RhoA activation by A23187, a Ca(2+) ionophore, demonstrating that PYK2/PDZ-RhoGEF couples RhoA activation to Ca(2+). PYK2 and PDZ-RhoGEF are necessary for angiotensin II-induced RhoA activation and for Ca(2+) signaling to RhoA.Arteriosclerosis Thrombosis and Vascular Biology 10/2009; 29(10):1657-63. · 6.34 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In response to stress or injury the heart undergoes an adverse remodeling process associated with cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and fibrosis. Transformation of cardiac fibroblasts to myofibroblasts is a crucial event initiating the fibrotic process. Cardiac myofibroblasts invade the myocardium and secrete excess amounts of extracellular matrix proteins, which cause myocardial stiffening, cardiac dysfunctions and progression to heart failure. While several studies indicate that the small GTPase RhoA can promote profibrotic responses, the exchange factors that modulate its activity in cardiac fibroblasts are yet to be identified. In the present study, we show that AKAP-Lbc, an A-kinase anchoring protein (AKAP) with an intrinsic Rho-specific guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) activity, is critical for activating RhoA and transducing profibrotic signals downstream of type I angiotensin II receptors (AT1Rs) in cardiac fibroblasts. In particular, our results indicate that suppression of AKAP-Lbc expression by infecting adult rat ventricular fibroblasts with lentiviruses encoding AKAP-Lbc specific short hairpin (sh) RNAs strongly reduces the ability of angiotensin II to promote RhoA activation, differentiation of cardiac fibroblasts to myofibroblasts, collagen deposition as well as myofibroblast migration. Interestingly, AT1Rs promote AKAP-Lbc activation via a pathway that requires the α subunit of the heterotrimeric G protein G12. These findings identify AKAP-Lbc as a key Rho-guanine nucleotide exchange factor modulating profibrotic responses in cardiac fibroblasts.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 11/2013; · 4.66 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Elevated cAMP in the trabecular meshwork (TM) cells increases the aqueous humor outflow facility. The authors investigated the mechanisms by which elevated cAMP opposes the RhoA-Rho kinase pathway, leading to the relaxation of the actomyosin system in bovine TM cells. Forskolin (Fsk) and rolipram were used to elevate cAMP levels. Changes in the phosphorylation of RhoA at Ser188 (a putative inhibitory site), the regulatory light chain of myosin (pMLC), and the regulatory subunit of myosin phosphatase (MYPT1) were determined by Western blot analysis. The actomyosin contraction was measured by collagen gel contraction (CGC) assay. The impact of cAMP on cell-matrix adhesion was followed by immunostaining of focal adhesion proteins and by electric cell-substrate impedance sensing. Elevated cAMP led to an increase in the phosphorylation of RhoA at Ser188, to the inhibition of endothelin-1 (ET-1)-induced activation of RhoA, and to the formation of stress fibers. The loss of pMLC along the stress fibers was comparable to that induced by Y-27632 (Rho kinase inhibitor). A concomitant reduction in both MYPT1 phosphorylation and pMLC was observed. Elevated cAMP also reduced (ET-1)-induced CGC and the cell-substrate resistance by >50%. In TM cells, elevated cAMP leads to the phosphorylation of RhoA at Ser188. Consequent inhibition of RhoA activity reduces the phosphorylation of MYPT1 at Thr853, leading to a reduction in MLC phosphorylation and actomyosin contraction. These actions, similar to those of the Rho kinase inhibitors, possibly underlie the reported increase in outflow facility in response to Fsk perfusion ex vivo.Investigative ophthalmology & visual science 11/2010; 52(3):1474-85. · 3.43 Impact Factor