Partitioning-defective 1b (PAR1b), also known as microtubule affinity-regulating kinase 2 (MARK2), is a member of evolutionally conserved PAR1/MARK serine/threonine kinase family, which plays a key role in the establishment and maintenance of cell polarity at least partly by phosphorylating microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) that regulate microtubule stability. PAR1b has also been reported to influence actin cytoskeletal organization, raising the possibility that PAR1b functionally interacts with the Rho family of small GTPases, central regulators of the actin cytoskeletal system. Consistent with this notion, PAR1 was recently found to be physically associated with a RhoA-specific guanine nucleotide exchange factor H1 (GEF-H1). This observation suggests a functional link between PAR1b and GEF-H1. Here we show that PAR1b induces phosphorylation of GEF-H1 on serine 885 and serine 959. We also show that PAR1b-induced serine 885/serine 959 phosphorylation inhibits RhoA-specific GEF activity of GEF-H1. As a consequence, GEF-H1 phosphorylated on both of the serine residues loses the ability to stimulate RhoA and thereby fails to induce RhoA-dependent stress fiber formation. These findings indicate that PAR1b not only regulates microtubule stability through phosphorylation of MAPs but also influences actin stress fiber formation by inducing GEF-H1 phosphorylation. The dual function of PAR1b in the microtubule-based cytoskeletal system and the actin-based cytoskeletal system in the coordinated regulation of cell polarity, cell morphology, and cell movement.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology