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Prostate. 1994;24(2):101-6.

Androgenic regulation of phosphorylation and stability of nucleolar protein nucleolin in rat ventral prostate.

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  • 1Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN.


Nucleolin is an abundant nucleolar phosphoprotein which has been implicated as a factor in various stages of ribosome synthesis, including transcription. Since androgens exert a profound effect on the rRNA synthesis in the target organ prostate, we have examined the nature of androgenic regulation of the amount and phosphorylation of nucleolin in this tissue. Phosphorylation of prostatic nucleolin is catalyzed in part by heparin-sensitive casein kinase 2 (CK-2) and by another (heparin-insensitive) protein kinase. Both the amount and phosphorylation of prostatic nucleolin are profoundly sensitive to androgens. Rapid reduction in the level and phosphorylation of nucleolin occurs following androgen deprivation, which corresponds to the ensuing cessation of prostatic growth leading to involution. Further, the loss of nucleolin phosphorylation and its degradation appear to be concordant. Administration of a single injection of 5 alpha-dihydrotestosterone to castrated animals causes an early increase in the amount and phosphorylation of nucleolin, starting in the prereplicative phase in the prostatic cell nucleus. These data suggest that early androgenic regulation of nucleolin expression and phosphorylation may play a role in nucleolar control mechanisms relevant to prostatic cell growth.

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