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Cell Signal. 2004 Jul;16(7):823-36.

Gbetagamma signaling and Ca2+ mobilization co-operate synergistically in a Sos and Rac-dependent manner in the activation of JNK by Gq-coupled receptors.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, the Biotechnology Research Institute, and the Molecular Neuroscience Center, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China.


The mechanism by which G(q)-coupled receptors stimulate the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activity has not been fully delineated. Here, we showed that stimulation of endogenous G(q)-coupled receptors in human hepatocarcinoma HepG2 cells resulted in an Src family kinase- and Ca(2+)-dependent JNK activation. Cos-7 cells transfected with HA-tagged JNK and various G(q)-coupled receptors also exhibited similar characteristics and provided further evidence for the involvement of Gbetagamma, an upstream intermediate for Src family kinases. The Ca(2+) and Gbetagamma signals operate in a high degree of independence. Transient expression of Gbetagamma subunits and elevation of cytoplasmic Ca(2+) level by thapsigargin activated JNK in a synergistic fashion. JNK activities triggered by G(q)-coupled receptors, Gbetagamma and thapsigargin were all suppressed by dominant negative (DN) mutants of Son of sevenless (Sos) and Rac. We propose that the co-operative effect between Gbetagamma-mediated signaling and the increased intracellular Ca(2+) level represents a robust mechanism for the stimulation of JNK by G(q)-coupled receptors.

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