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J Biol Chem. 2000 Aug 18;275(33):25723-32.

Regulation of human endothelial cell focal adhesion sites and migration by cGMP-dependent protein kinase I.

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  • 1Institut für Klinische Biochemie und Pathobiochemie, Medizinische Universitätsklinik, Würzburg, Germany.


cGMP-dependent protein kinase type I (cGK I), a major constituent of the atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP)/nitric oxide/cGMP signal transduction pathway, phosphorylates the vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP), a member of the Ena/VASP family of proteins involved in regulation of the actin cytoskeleton. Here we demonstrate that stimulation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) by both ANP and 8-(4-chlorophenylthio)guanosine 3':5'-monophosphate (8-pCPT-cGMP) activates transfected cGK I and causes detachment of VASP and its known binding partner (zyxin) from focal adhesions in >60% of cells after 30 min. The ANP effects, but not the 8-pCPT-cGMP effects, reversed after 3 h of treatment. In contrast, a catalytically inactive cGK Ibeta mutant (cGK Ibeta-K405A) was incapable of mediating these effects. VASP mutated (Ser/Thr to Ala) at all three of its established phosphorylation sites (vesicular stomatitis virus-tagged VASP-AAA mutant) was not phosphorylated by cGK I and was resistant to detaching from HUVEC focal adhesions in response to 8-pCPT-cGMP. Furthermore, activation of cGK I, but not of mutant cGK Ibeta-K405A, caused a 1.5-2-fold inhibition of HUVEC migration, a dynamic process highly dependent on focal adhesion formation and disassembly. These results indicate that cGK I phosphorylation of VASP results in loss of VASP and zyxin from focal adhesions, a response that could contribute to cGK alteration of cytoskeleton-regulated processes such as cell migration.

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