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FEBS Lett. 2000 Nov 10;484(3):217-23.

Further evidence that 3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase-1 (PDK1) is required for the stability and phosphorylation of protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms.

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MRC Protein Phosphorylation, MSI/WTB complex, University of Dundee, Dow Street, DD1 5EH, Dundee, UK.


The multi-site phosphorylation of the protein kinase C (PKC) superfamily plays an important role in the regulation of these enzymes. One of the key phosphorylation sites required for the activation of all PKC isoforms lies in the T-loop of the kinase domain. Recent in vitro and transfection experiments indicate that phosphorylation of this residue can be mediated by the 3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase-1 (PDK1). In this study, we demonstrate that in embryonic stem (ES) cells lacking PDK1 (PDK1-/- cells), the intracellular levels of endogenously expressed PKCalpha, PKCbetaI, PKCgamma, PKCdelta, PKCepsilon, and PKC-related kinase-1 (PRK1) are vastly reduced compared to control ES cells (PDK1+/+ cells). The levels of PKCzeta and PRK2 protein are only moderately reduced in the PDK1-/- ES cells. We demonstrate that in contrast to PKCzeta expressed PDK1+/+ ES cells, PKCzeta in ES cells lacking PDK1 is not phosphorylated at its T-loop residue. This provides the first genetic evidence that PKCzeta is a physiological substrate for PDK1. In contrast, PRK2 is still partially phosphorylated at its T-loop in PDK1-/- cells, indicating the existence of a PDK1-independent mechanism for the phosphorylation of PRK2 at this residue.

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