Bcl-2 Phosphorylation by p38 MAPK: Identification of target sites and biologic consequences

University of Florence, Florens, Tuscany, Italy
Journal of Biological Chemistry (Impact Factor: 4.6). 08/2006; 281(30):21353-61. DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M511052200
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The antiapoptotic role of Bcl-2 can be regulated by its phosphorylation in serine and threonine residues located in a nonstructured loop that links BH3 and BH4 domains. p38 MAPK has been identified as one of the kinases able to mediate such phosphorylation, through direct interaction with Bcl-2 protein in the mitochondrial compartment. In this study, we identify, by using mass spectrometry techniques and specific anti-phosphopeptide antibodies, Ser(87) and Thr(56) as the Bcl-2 residues phosphorylated by p38 MAPK and show that phosphorylation of these residues is always associated with a decrease in the antiapoptotic potential of Bcl-2 protein. Furthermore, we obtained evidence that p38 MAPK-induced Bcl-2 phosphorylation plays a key role in the early events following serum deprivation in embryonic fibroblasts. Both cytochrome c release and caspase activation triggered by p38 MAPK activation and Bcl-2 phosphorylation are absent in embryonic fibroblasts from p38alpha knock-out mice (p38alpha(-/-) MEF), whereas they occur within 12 h of serum withdrawal in p38alpha(+/+) MEF; moreover, they can be prevented by p38 MAPK inhibitors and are not associated with the synthesis of the proapoptotic proteins Bax and Fas. Thus, Bcl-2 phosphorylation by activated p38 MAPK is a key event in the early induction of apoptosis under conditions of cellular stress.

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    • "IKK; a novel Bcl-2 kinase? So far, ERK, JNK, and p38 MAPKs were identified to be involved in Bcl-2 phosphorylation in response to various cytotoxic stimuli as well as a few other kinases including Raf-1, PKA, and mTOR in a variety of mammalian cell lines (Blagosklonny et al., 1996; Srivastava et al., 1998; Calastretti et al., 2001; Tamura et al., 2004; De Chiara et al., 2006; Kim et al., 2008). Although shown to be associated with phosphorylation of Bclx L recently (Khoshnan et al., 2009), IKK has not been named to phosphorylate Bcl-2 yet. "
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    ABSTRACT: Apoptosis of macrophage foam cells loaded with modified/oxidized lipids is implicated in destabilization of advanced atherosclerotic plaques in humans. Concentration of HNE, main aldehydic product of plasma LDL peroxidation, elevates in atherosclerotic lesions as well as in cultured cells under oxidative stress. Although this reactive aldehyde has been shown to promote apoptosis with the involvement of p38 MAPK and JNK in various mammalian cell lines, roles of B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl-2) family proteins remain to be deciphered. We demonstrated that HNE-induced apoptosis was accompanied by concurrent downregulations of antiapoptotic Bcl-x(L) and Mcl-1 as well as upregulation of proapoptotic Bak. Furthermore, phoshorylation of Bcl-2 at Thr56, Ser70, and probably more phosphorylation sites located on N-terminal loop domain associated with HNE-induced apoptosis in both U937 and HeLa cells while ectopic expression of a phospho-defective Bcl-2 mutant significantly attenuated apoptosis. In parallel to this, HNE treatment caused release of proapoptotic Bax from Bcl-2. Pharmacological inhbition of IKK inhibited HNE-induced Bcl-2 phosphorylation. Similarly, silencing IKKα and -β both ended up with abrogation of Bcl-2 phosphorylation along with attenuation of apoptosis. Moreover, both IKKα and -β coimmunoprecipitated with Bcl-2 and in vitro kinase assay proved the ability of IKK to phosphorylate Bcl-2. In view of these findings and considering HNE inhibits DNA-binding activity of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) through prevention of IκB phosphorylation/ubiquitination/proteolysis, IKK appears to directly interfere with Bcl-2 activity through phosphorylation in HNE-mediated apoptosis independent of NF-κB signaling.
    Journal of Cellular Physiology 11/2012; 227(11):3556-65. DOI:10.1002/jcp.24057 · 3.87 Impact Factor
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    • "Active JNK1 inhibits Bcl2 via phosphorylation at sites T69, S70 and S87 (Wei et al., 2008). In contrast, other stress induced proteins like p38 family members phosphorylate Bcl2 at S87 and T56 only (De Chiara et al., 2006). Ultimately, inhibition of Bcl2 and the activation of Bim leads to BAX/BAK dependent apoptosis. "
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    • "However, the antiapoptotic effects of Bcl2 were negated by its phosphorylation by p38 MAPK (Fig. 5c). Phosphorylation of Bcl2 by p38 to pBcl2ser87 resulted in decrease of the anti-apoptotic potential, and pBcl2 is an important player in the initiation of the apoptotic signaling cascade (De Chiara et al. 2006) including release of cytochrome c and caspase activation. Thus, the present study also points out an important role of p38 in pro-apoptotic signaling through phosphorylation of Bcl2. "
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    ABSTRACT: Activation and translocation of the transcription factor nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kappaB) from cytoplasm to the nucleus has been reported in models of Parkinson's disease (PD). Our focus was to discern the upstream events which ultimately lead to NF-kappaB nuclear translocation using animal model of PD. We demonstrate that p38 activation results in downstream phosphorylation of NF-kappaB and accumulation of p65 subunit of NF-kappaB selectively in ventral midbrain but not in striatum. Treatment with p38 inhibitor, SB239063, prevented downstream phosphorylation of IkappaB alpha and p65 translocation to the nucleus in the ventral midbrain. Phosphorylation of anti-apoptotic Bcl2, an NF-kappaB target gene by p38 to inactive pBcl2ser87 was also attenuated by SB239063. Increased staining of p65 in the nuclei of cells in the substantia nigra but not in the ventral tegmental area of MPTP-treated mice further suggests a role for NF-kappaB in PD. In agreement with the above, sustained caspase activation is seen in the ventral midbrain but not in striatum. We demonstrate the region specific p38-mediated activation of NF-kappaB following MPTP treatment demonstrating the role of p38/NF-kappaB signaling in the pathogenesis and progression of the disease. Selective inhibitors of p38 may therefore, help preserve the surviving neurons in PD and slow down the disease progression.
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