Cellular contractility requires ubiquitin mediated proteolysis

Yuval Cinnamon*, Oren Feine, Helfrid Hochegger, Alexander Bershadsky, Michael Brandeis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Cellular contractility, essential for cell movement and proliferation, is regulated by microtubules, RhoA and actomyosin. The RhoA dependent kinase ROCK ensures the phosphorylation of the regulatory Myosin II Light Chain (MLC) Ser19, thereby activating actomyosin contractions. Microtubules are upstream inhibitors of contractility and their depolymerization or depletion cause cells to contract by activating RhoA. How microtubule dynamics regulates RhoA remains, a major missing link in understanding contractility. Principal Findings: We observed that contractility is inhibited by microtubules not only, as previously reported, in adherent cells, but also in non-adhering interphase and mitotic cells. Strikingly we observed that contractility requires ubiquitin mediated proteolysis by a Cullin-RING ubiquitin ligase. Inhibition of proteolysis, ubiquitination and neddylation all led to complete cessation of contractility and considerably reduced MLC Ser19 phosphorylation. Conclusions: Our results imply that cells express a contractility inhibitor that is degraded by ubiquitin mediated proteolysis, either constitutively or in response to microtubule depolymerization. This degradation seems to depend on a Cullin-RING ubiquitin ligase and is required for cellular contractions.

Original languageAmerican English
Article numbere6155
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume4
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 14 Jul 2009

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