Phosphorylation of p21 in G2/M promotes cyclin B-Cdc2 kinase activity.
ABSTRACT: Little is known about the posttranslational control of the cyclin-dependent protein kinase (CDK) inhibitor p21. We describe here a transient phosphorylation of p21 in the G2/M phase. G2/M-phosphorylated p21 is short-lived relative to hypophosphorylated p21. p21 becomes nuclear during S phase, prior to its phosphorylation by CDK2. S126-phosphorylated cyclin B1 binds to T57-phosphorylated p21. Cdc2 kinase activation is delayed in p21-deficient cells due to delayed association between Cdc2 and cyclin B1. Cyclin B1-Cdc2 kinase activity and G2/M progression in p21-/- cells are restored after reexpression of wild-type but not T57A mutant p21. The cyclin B1 S126A mutant exhibits reduced Cdc2 binding and has low kinase activity. Phosphorylated p21 binds to cyclin B1 when Cdc2 is phosphorylated on Y15 and associates poorly with the complex. Dephosphorylation on Y15 and phosphorylation on T161 promotes Cdc2 binding to the p21-cyclin B1 complex, which becomes activated as a kinase. Thus, hyperphosphorylated p21 activates the Cdc2 kinase in the G2/M transition.
Project description:The activity of Cdc2 (CDK1) kinase, which coordinates cell cycle progression and DNA break repair, is blocked upon its phosphorylation at tyrosine 15 (Y15) by Wee1 kinase in the presence of DNA damage. How Cdc2 can support DNA repair whilst being inactivated by the DNA damage checkpoint remains to be explained. Human CDK1 is phosphorylated by Myt1 kinase at threonine 14 (T14) close to its ATP binding site before being modified at threonine 161 (T167Sp) in its T-loop by the CDK-activating kinase (CAK). While modification of T161 promotes association with the cyclin partner, phosphorylation of T14 inhibits the CDK1-cyclin complex. This inhibition is further enforced by the modification of Y15 by Wee1 in the presence of DNA lesions. In S.pombe, the dominant inhibition of Cdc2 is provided by the phosphorylation of Y15 and only a small amount of Cdc2 is modified at T14 when cells are in S phase. Unlike human cells, both inhibitory modifications are executed by Wee1. Using the novel IEFPT technology, which combines isoelectric focusing (IEF) with Phos-tag SDS electrophoresis (PT), we report here that S.pombe Cdc2 kinase exists in seven forms. While five forms are phosphorylated, two species are not. Four phospho-forms associate with cyclin B (Cdc13) of which only two are modified at Y15 by Wee1. Interestingly, only one Y15-modified species carries also the T14 modification. The fifth phospho-form has a low affinity for cyclin B and is neither Y15 nor T14 modified. The two unphosphorylated forms may contribute directly to the DNA damage response as only they associate with the DNA damage checkpoint kinase Chk1. Interestingly, cyclin B is also present in the unphosphorylated pool. We also show that the G146D mutation in Cdc2.1w, which renders Cdc2 insensitive to Wee1 inhibition, is aberrantly modified in a Wee1-dependent manner. In conclusion, our work adds support to the idea that two distinct Cdc2 pools regulate cell cycle progression and the response to DNA damage.
Project description:Mitosis is triggered by the abrupt dephosphorylation of inhibitory Y15 and T14 residues of cyclin B1-bound cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK)1 that is also phosphorylated at T161 in its activation loop. The sequence of events leading to the accumulation of fully phosphorylated cyclin B1-CDK1 complexes remains unclear. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis allowed us to determine whether T14, Y15, and T161 phosphorylations occur on same CDK1 molecules and to characterize the physiological occurrence of their seven phosphorylation combinations. Intriguingly, in cyclin B1-CDK1, the activating T161 phosphorylation never occurred without the T14 phosphorylation. This strict association could not be uncoupled by a substantial reduction of T14 phosphorylation in response to Myt1 knockdown, suggesting some causal relationship. However, T14 phosphorylation was not directly required for T161 phosphorylation, because Myt1 knockdown did uncouple these phosphorylations when leptomycin B prevented cyclin B1-CDK1 complexes from accumulating in cytoplasm. The coupling mechanism therefore depended on unperturbed cyclin B1-CDK1 traffic. The unexpected observation that the activating phosphorylation of cyclin B1-CDK1 was tightly coupled to its T14 phosphorylation, but not Y15 phosphorylation, suggests a mechanism that prevents premature activation by constitutively active CDK-activating kinase. This explained the opposite effects of reduced expression of Myt1 and Wee1, with only the latter inducing catastrophic mitoses.
Project description:Cyclin A-cyclin dependent kinase (CDK) activity is regulated by cyclin A proteolysis and CDK inhibitors (CKIs) during M and G1 phases. Our previous work has shown that constitutive activation of cyclin A-CDK in mouse somatic cells, by ectopic expression of stabilized human cyclin A2 (lacking the destruction box: CycA?80) in triple CKI (p21, p27, and p107)-knocked-out mouse embryonic fibroblasts, induces rapid tetraploidization. However, effects of such cyclin A-CDK hyperactivation in human cells have been unknown. Here, we show hyperactivity of cyclin A-CDK induces G2/M-phase arrest in human cell lines with relatively low expression of p21 and p27. Moreover, adenovirus E1A protein promoted CycA?80-derived G2/M-phase arrest by increasing the amount of cyclin A and cyclin A-CDK2 complex. This response was suppressed by an addition of ATR or Chk1 inhibitor. The amount of repressive phosphorylation of CDK1 at tyrosine 15 (Y15) was decreased by Chk1 inhibitor treatment. Moreover, we observed that co-expressing CDK1AF mutant, which is resistant to the repressive phosphorylation at threonine 14 and Y15, or cdc25A, which dephosphorylates CDK1 at Y15, suppressed the G2/M-phase arrest by CycA?80 with E1A. These results suggest that G2/M-phase arrest in human cells by hyperactivity of cyclin A-CDK2 is caused by repression of CDK1 via the cell cycle checkpoint ATR-Chk1 pathway.
Project description:Nucleostemin (NS) protects the genome from replication-induced DNA damage and plays an indispensable role in maintaining the continuous proliferation of both p53-wildtype and mutant cells. Yet, some outcomes of NS-deficient cells appear to be shaped by their p53 status, which stimulates conflicting claims on the role of p53 in executing the NS function. This disparity was conveniently attributed to the usual suspect of cell-type variations. To provide a definitive resolution, we investigated the interplay between NS and p53 in two pairs of isogenic cells, i.e. genetically modified mouse embryonic fibroblast (MEF) cells and HCT116 human colon cancer cells. In MEF cells, p53 deletion further compromises rather than rescues the proliferative potential of NS-depleted cells without changing their G2/M arrest fate before prophase entry. The detrimental effect of p53 loss in NS-depleted MEF cells correlates with a dramatic increase of polyploid giant cells (PGCs) (up to 24%), which indicates aberrant mitosis. To determine how p53 shapes the response of cells to NS depletion at the molecular level, we showed that p53 turns on the expression of reprimo and MDM2 in NS-deficient MEF cells. In the absence of p53, NS-deficient MEF cells exhibit increased levels of phosphorylated cdc2 (Y15) protein and cyclin B1. In cancer (HCT116) cells, NS loss leads to G2/M arrest under both p53wt and p53ko conditions and increases phosphorylated cdc2 more in p53ko than in p53wt cells, as it does in MEF cells. Unlike its effect in MEF cells, NS depletion decreases tumor growth and increases the expression of reprimo and cyclin B1 in a p53-independent manner in HCT116 cells. Our data indicate that the p53 status of NS-deficient cells orchestrates how they respond to G2/M arrest in a normal vs. cancer cell distinct fashion.
Project description:Prior to cell division, normal adherent cells adopt a round morphology that is associated with a loss of actin stress fibres and disassembly of focal adhesions. In this study, we investigate the mitotic phosphorylation of the recently described paxillin and actin-binding focal-adhesion protein actopaxin [Nikolopoulos and Turner (2000) J. Cell Biol. 151, 1435-1448]. Actopaxin is comprised of an N-terminus containing six putative cdc2 phosphorylation sites and a C-terminus consisting of tandem calponin homology domains. Here we show that the N-terminus of actopaxin is phosphorylated by cyclin B1/cdc2 kinase in vitro and that this region of actopaxin precipitates cdc2 kinase activity from mitotic lysates. Actopaxin exhibits reduced electrophoretic mobility during mitosis that is dependent on phosphorylation within the first two consensus cdc2 phosphorylation sites. Finally, as cells progress from mitosis to G(1) there is an adhesion-independent dephosphorylation of actopaxin, suggesting that actopaxin dephosphorylation precedes cell spreading and the reformation of focal adhesions. Taken together, these results suggest a role for cyclin B1/cdc2-dependent phosphorylation of actopaxin in regulating actin cytoskeleton reorganization during cell division.
Project description:In mammalian spermatocytes, cell division cycle protein 2 (CDC2)/cyclin B1 and the chaperone heat shock protein A2 (HSPA2) are required for the G2-->M transition in prophase I. Here, we demonstrate that in primary spermatocytes, linker histone chaperone testis/embryo form of nuclear autoantigenic sperm protein (tNASP) binds the heat shock protein HSPA2, which localizes on the synaptonemal complex of spermatocytes. Significantly, the tNASP-HSPA2 complex binds linker histones and CDC2, forming a larger complex. We demonstrate that increasing amounts of tNASP favor tNASP-HSPA2-CDC2 complex formation. Binding of linker histones to tNASP significantly increases HSPA2 ATPase activity and the capacity of tNASP to bind HSPA2 and CDC2, precluding CDC2/cyclin B1 complex formation and, consequently, decreasing CDC2/cyclin B1 kinase activity. Linker histone binding to NASP controls the ability of HSPA2 to activate CDC2 for CDC2/cyclin B1 complex formation; therefore, tNASP's role is to provide the functional link between linker histones and cell cycle progression during meiosis.
Project description:G2 arrest of cells suffering DNA damage in S phase is crucial to avoid their entry into mitosis, with the concomitant risks of oncogenic transformation. According to the current model, signals elicited by DNA damage prevent mitosis by inhibiting both activation and nuclear import of cyclin B1-Cdk1, a master mitotic regulator. We now show that normal human fibroblasts use additional mechanisms to block activation of cyclin B1-Cdk1. In these cells, exposure to nonrepairable DNA damage leads to nuclear accumulation of inactive cyclin B1-Cdk1 complexes. This nuclear retention, which strictly depends on association with endogenous p21, prevents activation of cyclin B1-Cdk1 by Cdc25 and Cdk-activating kinase as well as its recruitment to the centrosome. In p21-deficient normal human fibroblasts and immortal cell lines, cyclin B1 fails to accumulate in the nucleus and could be readily detected at the centrosome in response to DNA damage. Therefore, in normal cells, p21 exerts a dual role in mediating DNA damage-induced cell cycle arrest and exit before mitosis. In addition to blocking pRb phosphorylation, p21 directly prevents mitosis by inactivating and maintaining the inactive state of mitotic cyclin-Cdk complexes. This, with subsequent degradation of mitotic cyclins, further contributes to the establishment of a permanent G2 arrest.
Project description:Eukaryotic organisms use conserved checkpoint mechanisms that regulate Cdk1 by inhibitory phosphorylation to prevent mitosis from interfering with DNA replication or repair. In metazoans, this checkpoint mechanism is also used for coordinating mitosis with dynamic developmental processes. Inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1 is catalyzed by Wee1 kinases that phosphorylate tyrosine 15 (Y15) and dual-specificity Myt1 kinases found only in metazoans that phosphorylate Y15 and the adjacent threonine (T14) residue. Despite partially redundant roles in Cdk1 inhibitory phosphorylation, Wee1 and Myt1 serve specialized developmental functions that are not well understood. Here, we expressed wild-type and phospho-acceptor mutant Cdk1 proteins to investigate how biochemical differences in Cdk1 inhibitory phosphorylation influence Drosophila imaginal development. Phosphorylation of Cdk1 on Y15 appeared to be crucial for developmental and DNA damage-induced G2-phase checkpoint arrest, consistent with other evidence that Myt1 is the major Y15-directed Cdk1 inhibitory kinase at this stage of development. Expression of non-inhibitable Cdk1 also caused chromosome defects in larval neuroblasts that were not observed with Cdk1(Y15F) mutant proteins that were phosphorylated on T14, implicating Myt1 in a novel mechanism promoting genome stability. Collectively, these results suggest that dual inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1 by Myt1 serves at least two functions during development. Phosphorylation of Y15 is essential for the premitotic checkpoint mechanism, whereas T14 phosphorylation facilitates accumulation of dually inhibited Cdk1-Cyclin B complexes that can be rapidly activated once checkpoint-arrested G2-phase cells are ready for mitosis.
Project description:SIL is an immediate-early gene that is essential for embryonic development and is implicated in T-cell leukemia-associated translocations. We now show that the Sil protein is hyperphosphorylated during mitosis or in cells blocked at prometaphase by microtubule inhibitors. Cell cycle-dependent phosphorylation of Sil is required for its interaction with Pin1, a regulator of mitosis. Point mutation of the seven (S/T)P sites between amino acids 567 and 760 reduces mitotic phosphorylation of Sil, Pin1 binding, and spindle checkpoint duration. When a phosphorylation site mutant Sil is stably expressed, the duration of the spindle checkpoint is shortened in cells challenged with taxol or nocodazole, and the cells revert to a G2-like state. This event is associated with the downregulation of the kinase activity of the Cdc2/cyclin B1 complex and the dephosphorylation of the threonine 161 on the Cdc2 subunit. Sil downregulation by plasmid-mediated RNA interference limited the ability of cells to activate the spindle checkpoint and correlated with a reduction of Cdc2/cyclin B1 activity and phosphorylation on T161 on the Cdc2 subunit. These data suggest that a critical region of Sil is required to mediate the presentation of Cdc2 activity during spindle checkpoint arrest.
Project description:SL4, a chalcone-based compound, has been shown to retard tumor invasion and angiogenesis by suppressing HIF1 activity and to induce apoptosis by promoting ROS release. Here, we report that SL4 is able to inhibit the proliferation of different types of breast cancer cell in vitro and in vivo by inducing G2/M cell cycle arrest. Our results showed that SL4 exhibited strong anti-proliferative activity in several human breast cancer cell lines, with IC50 values lower than 1.3??M. Further studies indicated that SL4 induced G2/M arrest in these cell lines. Mechanistically, SL4 reduces the expression of cyclin A2 and cdc25C and decreases the activity of the cdc2/cyclin B1 complex. Notably, SL4 treatment resulted in an obvious increase in p21 mRNA and protein levels through activation of MAPK signaling pathways, but not the TGF-? pathway. SP600125 and PD98059, specific inhibitors of JNK kinase and ERK kinase, significantly blocked the SL4-induced G2/M phase arrest and upregulation of p21. Furthermore, SL4 suppressed the growth of established breast tumors in nude mice through upregulation of p21 and downregulation of cdc25C, and displayed a good safety profile. Taken together, these findings demonstrate the potential value of SL4 as a novel multi-target anti-tumor drug candidate.