[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Vimentin, a type III intermediate filament (IF) protein, is phosphorylated predominantly in mitosis. The expression of a phosphorylation-compromised vimentin mutant in T24 cultured cells leads to cytokinetic failure, resulting in binucleation (multinucleation). The physiological significance of IF phosphorylation during mitosis for organogenesis and tissue homeostasis was uncertain. Here, we generated knock-in mice expressing vimentin that has had the serine sites phosphorylated during mitosis substituted by alanine residues. Homozygotic mice (VIMSA/SA) presented with microophthalmia and cataract in lens, whereas heterozygotic mice (VIMWT/SA) was indistinguishable from WT (VIMWT/WT) mice. In VIMSA/SA mice, lens epithelial cell number was not only reduced, but the cells also exhibited chromosomal instability (CIN) including binucleation and aneuploidy. Electron microscopy revealed fiber membranes that were disorganized in the lenses of VIMSA/SA, reminiscent of similar characteristic changes seen in age-related cataract. Since the mRNA level of the senescence (aging)-related gene was significantly elevated in samples from VIMSA/SA, the lens phenotype suggests a possible causal relationship between CIN and premature aging.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Polo-like kinase 1 (Plk1) controls multiple aspects of mitosis and is activated through its phosphorylation at Thr210. Here we identify Ser99 on Plk1 as a novel mitosis-specific phosphorylation site, which operates independently of Plk1-Thr210 phosphorylation. Plk1-Ser99 phosphorylation creates a docking site for 14-3-3γ, and this interaction stimulates the catalytic activity of Plk1. Knockdown of 14-3-3γ or replacement of wild-type (WT) Plk1 by a Ser99-phospho-blocking mutant leads to a prometaphase/metaphase-like arrest due to the activation of the spindle assembly checkpoint. Inhibition of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) and Akt significantly reduces the level of Plk1-Ser99 phosphorylation and delays metaphase to anaphase transition. Plk1-Ser99 phosphorylation requires not only Akt activity but also protein(s) associated with Plk1 in a mitosis-specific manner. Therefore, mitotic Plk1 activity is regulated not only by Plk1-Thr210 phosphorylation, but also by Plk1 binding to 14-3-3γ following Plk1-Ser99 phosphorylation downstream of the PI3K-Akt signalling pathway. This novel Plk1 activation pathway controls proper progression from metaphase to anaphase.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The primary cilium is an antenna-like organelle that modulates differentiation, sensory functions, and signal transduction. After cilia are disassembled at the G0/G1 transition, formation of cilia is strictly inhibited in proliferating cells. However, the mechanisms of this inhibition are unknown. In this paper, we show that trichoplein disappeared from the basal body in quiescent cells, whereas it localized to mother and daughter centrioles in proliferating cells. Exogenous expression of trichoplein inhibited primary cilia assembly in serum-starved cells, whereas ribonucleic acid interference-mediated depletion induced primary cilia assembly upon cultivation with serum. Trichoplein controlled Aurora A (AurA) activation at the centrioles predominantly in G1 phase. In vitro analyses confirmed that trichoplein bound and activated AurA directly. Using trichoplein mutants, we demonstrate that the suppression of primary cilia assembly by trichoplein required its ability not only to localize to centrioles but also to bind and activate AurA. Trichoplein or AurA knockdown also induced G0/G1 arrest, but this phenotype was reversed when cilia formation was prevented by simultaneous knockdown of IFT-20. These data suggest that the trichoplein-AurA pathway is required for G1 progression through a key role in the continuous suppression of primary cilia assembly.
The Journal of Cell Biology 04/2012; 197(3):391-405. DOI:10.1083/jcb.201106101 · 9.83 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DNA-damaging strategies, such as radiotherapy and the majority of chemotherapeutic therapies, are the most frequently used non-surgical anti-cancer therapies for human cancers. These therapies activate DNA damage/replication checkpoints, which induce cell-cycle arrest to provide the time needed to repair DNA damage. Due to genetic defect(s) in the ATM (ataxia-telangiectasia mutated)-Chk2-p53 pathway, an ATR (ATM- and Rad3-related)-Chk1-Cdc25 route is the sole checkpoint pathway in a majority of cancer cells. Chk1 inhibitors are expected to selectively induce the mitotic cell death (mitotic catastrophe) of cancer cells. However, recent new findings have pointed out that Chk1 is essential for the maintenance of genome integrity even during unperturbed cell-cycle progression, which is controlled by a variety of protein kinases. These observations have raised concerns about a possible risk of Chk1 inhibitors on the clinics. In this review, we summarize recent advances in Chk1 regulation by phosphorylation, and discuss Chk1 as a molecular target for cancer therapeutics. (Cancer Sci, doi: 10.1111/j.1349-7006.2012.02280.x, 2012).
Cancer Science 03/2012; 103(7). DOI:10.1111/j.1349-7006.2012.02280.x · 3.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The keratin intermediate filament network is abundant in epithelial cells, but its function in the establishment and maintenance of cell polarity is unclear. Here, we show that Albatross complexes with Par3 to regulate formation of the apical junctional complex (AJC) and maintain lateral membrane identity. In nonpolarized epithelial cells, Albatross localizes with keratin filaments, whereas in polarized epithelial cells, Albatross is primarily localized in the vicinity of the AJC. Knockdown of Albatross in polarized cells causes a disappearance of key components of the AJC at cell-cell borders and keratin filament reorganization. Lateral proteins E-cadherin and desmoglein 2 were mislocalized even on the apical side. Although Albatross promotes localization of Par3 to the AJC, Par3 and ezrin are still retained at the apical surface in Albatross knockdown cells, which retain intact microvilli. Analysis of keratin-deficient epithelial cells revealed that keratins are required to stabilize the Albatross protein, thus promoting the formation of AJC. We propose that keratins and the keratin-binding protein Albatross are important for epithelial cell polarization.
The Journal of Cell Biology 11/2008; 183(1):19-28. DOI:10.1083/jcb.200803133 · 9.83 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: LAP (leucine-rich repeats (LRR) and PSD-95/Dlg/ZO-1 (PDZ)) family proteins, including Scribble, LET-413, ERBIN, Densin-180 and Lano, are involved in the regulation of cell polarity. The LRR domains of LAP proteins were reported to mediate their basolateral membrane localization and to be essential for their function. To further dissect the mechanism of the plasma membrane localization of ERBIN, we introduced various mutants of ERBIN into cultured cells and observed the intracellular localization. When an LRR domain mutant lacking amino acid residues 1-32 at the amino (N) terminal region was over-expressed in cells, the mutant did not localize at the plasma membrane, but localized in the cytoplasm. We found that cysteines 14 and 16 at the N-terminal region of ERBIN are in vivo palmitoylated. Over-expressed mutants in which cysteine 14 and/or cysteine 16 were changed to serines did not localize at the plasma membrane, indicating that the palmitoylation of ERBIN is necessary for its plasma membrane localization. The over-expressed 1-196 amino acids fragment of ERBIN, which lacked the latter half of LRR, was palmitoylated but did not localize at the plasma membrane. These results suggest that both palmitoylation and LRR are required for the plasma membrane localization of ERBIN.
Genes to Cells 06/2008; 13(7):691-701. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2443.2008.01198.x · 2.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Protein aggregate formation in muscle is thought to be pathogenic and associated with clinical weakness. Over-expression of either wild type or a mutant form of myeloid leukemia factor 1 (MLF1) in transgenic mouse skeletal muscle and in cultured cells resulted in aggregate formation. Aggregates were detected in MLF1 transgenic mice at 6 weeks of age, and increased in size with age. However, histological examination of skeletal muscles of MLF1 transgenic mice revealed no pathological changes other than the aggregates, and RotaRod testing did not detect functional deficits. MLF1 has recently been identified as a protein that could neutralize the toxicity of intracellular protein aggregates in a Drosophila model of Huntington's disease (HD). We also demonstrate that MLF1 interacts with MRJ, a heat shock protein, which can independently neutralize the toxicity of intracellular protein aggregates in the Drosophila HD model. Our data suggest that over-expression of MLF1 has no significant impact on skeletal muscle function in mice; that progressive formation of protein aggregates in muscle are not necessarily pathogenic; and that MLF1 and MRJ may function together to ameliorate the toxic effects of polyglutamine or mutant proteins in myodegenerative diseases such as inclusion body myositis and oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy, as well as neurodegenerative disease.
Journal of the Neurological Sciences 02/2008; 264(1-2):77-86. DOI:10.1016/j.jns.2007.07.027 · 2.47 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In astrocytes, the PGF(2alpha) or ionomycin treatment induces the phosphorylation at Ser38 and Ser82 of vimentin, a type III intermediate filament, by Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII). We found here that vimentin phospho-Ser82 was dephosphorylated much slower than phospho-Ser38. Vimentin phospho-Ser38 was dephosphorylated quickly by purified PP1 catalytic subunit (PP1c) in vitro, whereas phospho-Ser82 was insensitive to PP1c. Because PP1c directly bound to vimentin through a VxF motif (Val83-Asp84-Phe85), the PP1c active site appeared to be unable to approach phospho-Ser82, leading to the prolongation of the phosphorylation at Ser-82. In astrocytes, PP1calpha was in vivo associated with vimentin filaments. The repetitive treatment by ionomycin at a short interval resulted in the sustained elevation of Ser82 phosphorylation, leading to the marked disassembly of vimentin filaments. Taken together, these results suggest that vimentin is a novel member of binding partner of PP1c in astrocytes, and vimentin-Ser82 may act as a memory phosphorylation site.
Genes to Cells 06/2006; 11(5):531-40. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2443.2006.00961.x · 2.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Intermediate filaments (IF) form the structural framework of the cytoskeleton. Although histopathological detection of IF proteins is utilized for examining cancer specimens as reliable markers, the molecular mechanisms by which IF are involved in the biology of cancer cells are still unclear. We found that site-specific phosphorylation of IF proteins induces the disassembly of filament structures. To further dissect the in vivo spatiotemporal dynamics of IF phosphorylation, we developed site- and phosphorylation state-specific antibodies. Using these antibodies, we detected kinase activities that specifically phosphorylate type III IF, including vimentin, glial fibrillary acidic protein and desmin, during mitosis. Cdk1 phosphorylates vimentin-Ser55 from prometaphase to metaphase, leading to the recruitment of Polo-like kinase 1 (Plk1) to vimentin. Upon binding to Phospho-Ser55 of vimentin, Plk1 is activated, and then phosphorylates vimentin-Ser82. During cytokinesis, Rho-kinase and Aurora-B specifically phosphorylate IF at the cleavage furrow. IF phosphorylation by Cdk1, Plk1, Rho-kinase and Aurora-B plays an important role in the local IF breakdown, and is essential for the efficient segregation of IF networks into daughter cells. As another part of our research on IF, we have set out to find the binding partners with simple epithelial keratin 8/18. We identified tumor necrosis factor receptor type 1-associated death domain protein (TRADD) as a keratin 18-binding protein. Together with data from other laboratories, it is proposed that simple epithelial keratins may play a role in modulating the response to some apoptotic signals. Elucidation of the precise molecular functions of IF is expected to improve our understanding of tumor development, invasion and metastasis.
Cancer Science 04/2006; 97(3):167-74. DOI:10.1111/j.1349-7006.2006.00161.x · 3.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: PKCepsilon controls the transport of endocytosed beta1-integrins to the plasma membrane regulating directional cell motility. Vimentin, an intermediate filament protein upregulated upon epithelial cell transformation, is shown here to be a proximal PKCepsilon target within the recycling integrin compartment. On inhibition of PKC and vimentin phosphorylation, integrins become trapped in vesicles and directional cell motility towards matrix is severely attenuated. In vitro reconstitution assays showed that PKCepsilon dissociates from integrin containing endocytic vesicles in a selectively phosphorylated vimentin containing complex. Mutagenesis of PKC (controlled) sites on vimentin and ectopic expression of the variant leads to the accumulation of intracellular PKCepsilon/integrin positive vesicles. Finally, introduction of ectopic wild-type vimentin is shown to promote cell motility in a PKCepsilon-dependent manner; alanine substitutions in PKC (controlled) sites on vimentin abolishes the ability of vimentin to induce cell migration, whereas the substitution of these sites with acidic residues enables vimentin to rescue motility of PKCepsilon null cells. Our results indicate that PKC-mediated phosphorylation of vimentin is a key process in integrin traffic through the cell.
The EMBO Journal 12/2005; 24(22):3834-45. DOI:10.1038/sj.emboj.7600847 · 10.43 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Keratins 8 and 18 (K8/18) are major components of the intermediate filaments (IFs) of simple epithelia. We report here the identification of a novel protein termed trichoplein. This protein shows a low degree of sequence similarity to trichohyalin, plectin and myosin heavy chain, and is a K8/18-binding protein. Among interactions between trichoplein and various IF proteins that we tested using two-hybrid methods, trichoplein interacted significantly with K16 and K18, and to some extent with K5, K6a, K8 and K14. In in vitro co-sedimentation assays, trichoplein directly binds to K8/18, but not with vimentin, desmin, actin filaments or microtubules. An antibody raised against trichoplein specifically recognized a polypeptide with a relative molecular mass of 61 kDa in cell lysates. Trichoplein was immunoprecipitated using this antibody in a complex with K8/18 and immunostaining revealed that trichoplein colocalized with K8/18 filaments in HeLa cells. In polarized Caco-2 cells, trichoplein colocalized not only with K8/18 filaments in the apical region but also with desmoplakin, a constituent of desmosomes. In the absorptive cells of the small intestine, trichoplein colocalized with K8/18 filaments at the apical cortical region, and was also concentrated at desmosomes. Taken together, these results suggest that trichoplein is a keratin-binding protein that may be involved in the organization of the apical network of keratin filaments and desmosomes in simple epithelial cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cytokinesis is regulated by several protein kinases, such as Aurora-B and Rho-kinase/ROCK. We have indicated that these two kinases are the cleavage furrow (CF) kinases that accumulate at the cleavage furrow and phosphorylate several intermediate filament (IF) proteins into two daughter cells. It has been reported that Aurora-B phosphorylates MgcRacGAP to functionally convert to a RhoGAP during cytokinesis. Therefore, we investigated here the relationship between Aurora-B and Rho-kinase/ROCK in cytokinesis, by using small interfering RNA (siRNA) technique. Aurora-B depletion did not alter the cleavage furrow-specific localization of Rho-kinase/ROCK and vice versa. Treatment of Aurora-B or Rho-kinase/ROCK siRNA increased multinucleate cells, and the effect of double depletion was additive. Aurora-B depletion induced the reduction of cleavage furrow-specific phosphorylation of vimentin at Ser72 but not vimentin at Ser71, myosin light chain (MLC) at Ser19, and myosin binding subunit of myosin phosphatase (MBS) at Ser852. In contrast, Rho-kinase/ROCK depletion led to the reduction of cleavage furrow-specific phosphorylation of MLC at Ser19, MBS at Ser852, and vimentin at Ser71 but not vimentin at Ser72. Cleavage furrow-specific ezrin/radixin/moesin (ERM) phosphorylation was not altered in the Aurora-B- and/or Rho-kinase/ROCK-depleted cells. In addition, C3 or toxin B treatment did not abolish ERM phosphorylation at the cleavage furrow in cells attaining cytokinesis. These results suggest that Aurora-B and Rho-kinase/ROCK regulate the progression of cytokinesis without communicating to each other, and there may exist a novel protein kinase which phosphorylates ERM at the cleavage furrow.
Genes to Cells 03/2005; 10(2):127-37. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-2443.2005.00824.x · 2.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In this study, we observed the intracellular behavior of recombinant invasin, a 103-kDa outer membrane protein of Yersinia pseudotuberculosis. To mimic the in vivo behavior of bacterial invasin, a polyvalent form of invasin was generated by incubation of biotinylated GST-fused invasin C-terminal portion protein (GST-INVS) with avidin. Several experiments confirmed that the recombinant invasin could consistently reproduce the invasin-mediated entry to mammalian epithelial cells. We analyzed the molecular kinetics of polyvalent INVS by western blotting, (125) I-uptake, and immunofluorescent microscopy. The internalized polyvalent INVS was rapidly translocated to the RIPA-insoluble (polymerized-actin enriched) fraction and formed cytoplasmic vesicles, while monovalent invasin did not show such kinetics. From these observations, we concluded that our bacterial-free system is able to analyze the action of invasin for Yersinia pseudotuberculosis entry.
Microbiology and Immunology 02/2005; 49(4):297-302. DOI:10.1111/j.1348-0421.2005.tb03729.x · 1.24 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mitotic kinases regulate cell division and its checkpoints, errors of which can lead to aneuploidy or genetic instability.
One of these is Aurora-B, a key kinase that is required for chromosome alignment at the metaphase plate and for cytokinesis
in mammalian cells. We report here that human Aurora-B is phosphorylated at Thr-232 through interaction with the inner centromere
protein (INCENP) in vivo. The phosphorylation of Thr-232 occurs by means of an autophosphorylation mechanism, which is indispensable for the Aurora-B
kinase activity. The activation of Aurora-B spatio-temporally correlated with the site-specific phosphorylation of its physiological
substrates, histone H3 and vimentin. Overexpression of the TA mutant of Aurora-B, in which Thr-232 was changed into alanine,
frequently induced multinuclearity in cells. These results indicate that the phosphorylation of Thr-232 is an essential regulatory
mechanism for Aurora-B activation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS) is a blistering cutaneous disease featuring protein aggregates. Here we investigate the molecular mechanisms linking protein aggregates to cell death in a cellular model of EBS in which HaCaT keratinocytes are transfected with plasmids expressing various mutant forms of keratin 14 (K14). In HaCaT cells, mutant K14 was found to form ubiquitinated protein aggregates that suppressed 20 S proteasome function instead of being degraded by 20 S proteasome. Keratinocytes with mutant K14-induced phosphorylation of the stress-activated kinase c-Jun, as well as up-regulation of unfolding protein Bip, indicates induction of endoplasmic reticulum stress. HaCaT cells were susceptible to apoptosis by activation of caspases-3, and -8, but not caspase-9 or -12. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNFalpha) in the culture medium was increased in keratinocytes with mutant K14 compared with wild K14, and the addition of neutralizing anti-TNFalpha antibody to the culture medium rescued keratinocytes from cell death. Thus, TNFalpha release and the subsequent activation of the TNFalpha receptor by an autocrine/paracrine pathway links protein aggregates to cell death in this keratinocyte EBS cellular model. Furthermore, mutation in K14 reduced its affinity to TNFalpha receptor-associated death domain (TRADD), suggesting that the susceptibility of keratinocytes to caspase-8-mediated apoptosis is increased in mutated K14 because of impairment of the cytoprotective mechanism mediated by K14-TRADD interaction.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: With the recent molecular findings, the podocyte is emerging as a key cell type involved in glomerular damage, but protein complexes involved remain poorly understood. To systematically search for additional podocyte molecules interacting with nephrin, a key structural molecule of the interpodocyte filtration slit, precipitation of glomerular lysates was set out with anti-nephrin antibodies to identify members of the nephrin-associated protein complex. Proteins of the precipitate were subsequently identified with MALDI-TOF mass analysis. One of the proteins thus obtained showed identity with densin, a protein originally purified from rat forebrain postsynaptic density fraction and so far shown to be highly brain-specific. The expression of densin appeared distinctly in the glomerulus and cultured podocytes by RT-PCR. Immunoblotting studies revealed a specific band of 185 kD in brain and cultured podocytes; in human glomerulus, densin appeared as a 210-kD band. By immunocytochemistry, densin localizes in glomeruli in a podocyte-like pattern. Electron microscopic studies revealed densin localization in the slit diaphragm area. Due to its known involvement in the synaptic organization, maintenance of cell shape and polarity in nerve cells, together with its demonstrated interactions with alpha-actinin-4, densin may share the same functions in podocytes by associating with the nephrin interacting protein complex at the slit diaphragm.
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology 08/2003; 14(7):1731-7. DOI:10.1097/01.ASN.0000075553.33781.9F · 9.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Septins are a family of conserved proteins implicated in a variety of cellular functions such as cytokinesis and vesicle trafficking, but their properties and modes of action are largely unknown. Here we now report findings of immunocytochemical and biochemical characterization of a mammalian septin, MSF-A. Using an antibody specific for MSF subfamily proteins, MSF-A was found to be expressed predominantly in mammary human mammary epithelial cells (HMEC). MSF-A was associated with microtubules in interphase HMEC cells as it localized with the mitotic spindle and the bundle of microtubule at midzone during mitosis. Biochemical analysis revealed direct binding of MSF-A with polymerized tubulin through its central region containing guanine nucleotide-interactive motifs. GTPase activity, however, was not required for the association. Conditions that disrupt the microtubule network also disrupted the MSF-A-containing filament structure, resulting in a punctate cytoplasmic pattern. Depletion of MSF-A using small interfering RNAs caused incomplete cell division and resulted in the accumulation of binucleated cells. Unlike Nedd5, an MSF mutant deficient in GTPase activity forms filament indistinguishable from that of the wild type in COS cells. These results strongly suggest that septin filaments may interact not only with actin filaments but also with microtubule networks and that GTPase activity of MSF-A is not indispensable to incorporation of MSF-A into septin filaments.