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.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Ca(2+) coupling between endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and mitochondria is central to multiple cell survival and cell death mechanisms. Cytoplasmic [Ca(2+)] ([Ca(2+)](c)) spikes and oscillations produced by ER Ca(2+) release are effectively delivered to the mitochondria. Propagation of [Ca(2+)](c) signals to the mitochondria requires the passage of Ca(2+) across three membranes, namely the ER membrane, the outer mitochondrial membrane (OMM) and the inner mitochondrial membrane (IMM). Strategic positioning of the mitochondria by cytoskeletal transport and interorganellar tethers provides a means to promote the local transfer of Ca(2+) between the ER membrane and OMM. In this setting, even >100 microM [Ca(2+)] may be attained to activate the low affinity mitochondrial Ca(2+) uptake. However, a mitochondrial [Ca(2+)] rise has also been documented during submicromolar [Ca(2+)](c) elevations. Evidence has been emerging that Ca(2+) exerts allosteric control on the Ca(2+) transport sites at each membrane, providing mechanisms that may facilitate the Ca(2+) delivery to the mitochondria. Here we discuss the fundamental mechanisms of ER and mitochondrial Ca(2+) transport, particularly the control of their activity by Ca(2+) and evaluate both high- and low-[Ca(2+)]-activated mitochondrial calcium signals in the context of cell physiology.
    Cell Calcium 07/2008; 44(1):51-63. DOI:10.1016/j.ceca.2007.11.015 · 4.21 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this study, we provide evidence that photostimulation of various cancer cells preloaded with a new photosensitizing compound, tetrakis-meso-(4-ethyleneglycol-2,3,5,6-tetrafluorophenyl) porphyrin (PORF-TEG), results in rapid activation of the cell death machinery. PORF-TEG, although primarily localized in lysosomes, induces mitochondria-driven apoptosis. The induction of apoptosis is accompanied by immediate and sustained activation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and transient activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). Conversely, the inhibition of p38 by PD 169316 or SB202190 and by the p38alpha dominant-negative mutant as well as the deletion of the p38alpha gene (MEFs-KO) protected cells from apoptosis, whereas inhibition of JNK did not. Activation of the p38 signaling pathway occurs upstream of caspase activation. In addition, preincubation of cells with scavengers of reactive oxygen species attenuated p38 and caspase activation and increased cell survival, thus connecting reactive oxygen species formation with the activation of the p38 pathway. Later events included degradation of Bcl-2, activation of tBid, and cleavage of Bad and Mcl-1. The data suggest a key role for p38 MAPK in PORF-TEG-photoinduced apoptosis.
    Oncogene 06/2008; 27(21):3010-20. DOI:10.1038/sj.onc.1210960 · 8.56 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Several viruses, including influenza, induce an imbalance of intracellular redox state toward pro-oxidant conditions. Through different mechanisms these alterations contribute both to influenza virus replication and to the pathogenesis of virus-induced disease. At the same time, influenza virus activates several intracellular signaling pathways involved in important physiological functions of the cell. Interestingly, many of these pathways are finely regulated by small changes in intracellular redox state, and the virus-induced redox imbalance might also control viral replication through this mechanism. Here we review the main intracellular redox-sensitive pathways activated upon influenza infection and involved in regulating viral replication.
    The New Microbiologica: official journal of the Italian Society for Medical Virology (SIVIM) 11/2007; 30(4):367-75. · 1.60 Impact Factor