Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Biochem J. 2004 Aug 1;381(Pt 3):655-63.

Sphingosine kinase activity is required for sphingosine-mediated phospholipase D activation in C2C12 myoblasts.

Author information

  • 1Dipartimento di Scienze Biochimiche, Università degli Studi di Firenze, Viale G.B.Morgagni 50, 50134 Florence, Italy.


Sphingosine (Sph) has been implicated as a modulator of membrane signal transduction systems and as a regulatory element of cardiac and skeletal muscle physiology, but little information is presently available on its precise mechanism of action. Recent studies have shown that sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P), generated by the action of sphingosine kinase (SphK) on Sph, also possesses biological activity, acting as an intracellular messenger, as well as an extracellular ligand for specific membrane receptors. At present, however, it is not clear whether the biological effects elicited by Sph are attributable to its conversion into S1P. In the present study, we show that Sph significantly stimulated phospholipase D (PLD) activity in mouse C2C12 myoblasts via a previously unrecognized mechanism that requires the conversion of Sph into S1P and its subsequent action as extracellular ligand. Indeed, Sph-induced activation of PLD was inhibited by N,N-dimethyl-D-erythro-sphingosine (DMS), at concentrations capable of specifically inhibiting SphK. Moreover, the crucial role of SphK-derived S1P in the activation of PLD by Sph was confirmed by the observed potentiated effect of Sph in myoblasts where SphK1 was overexpressed, and the attenuated response in cells transfected with the dominant negative form of SphK1. Notably, the measurement of S1P formation in vivo by employing labelled ATP revealed that cell-associated SphK activity in the extracellular compartment largely contributed to the transformation of Sph into S1P, with the amount of SphK released into the medium being negligible. It will be important to establish whether the mechanism of action identified in the present study is implicated in the multiple biological effects elicited by Sph in muscle cells.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk