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J Biol Chem. 2003 Jan 24;278(4):2190-8. Epub 2002 Oct 27.

Analysis of ligand-stimulated CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5) phosphorylation in intact cells using phosphosite-specific antibodies.

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Department of Immunology, Georg-August-University, 37075 Göttingen, Germany.


Human CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5), a member of the superfamily of G protein-coupled receptors, regulates the activation and directed migration of leukocytes and serves as the main coreceptor for the entry of R5 tropic strains of human immunodeficiency viruses. We have previously shown that RANTES/CCL5 binding to CCR5 induces GPCR kinase (GRK)- and protein kinase C (PKC)-mediated phosphorylation of four distinct C-terminal serine residues. To study these phosphorylation events in vivo, we have generated monoclonal antibodies, which specifically react only with either phosphorylated or nonphosphorylated CCR5. These phosphosite-specific antibodies reveal that following ligand stimulation of the receptor serine 337 is exclusively phosphorylated by a PKC-mediated mechanism, while GRKs phosphorylate serine 349. GRK-mediated receptor phosphorylation proceeds in a regular time-dependent manner (t(12) approximately 2 min) with an apparent EC(50) of 5 nm. In contrast, PKC phosphorylates serine 337 at 50-fold lower concentrations and in a very rapid, albeit transient manner. Protein phosphatases that are active at neutral pH and are inhibited by okadaic acid rapidly dephosphorylate phosphoserine 337, but less efficiently phosphoserine 349, in intact cells and in an in vitro assay. Immunofluorescence microscopy demonstrates that phosphorylated receptors accumulate in a perinuclear compartment, which resembles recycling endosomes. This study is the first to analyze in detail the spatial and temporal dynamics of GRK- versus PKC-mediated phosphorylation of a G protein-coupled receptor and its subsequent dephosphorylation on the level of individual phosphorylation sites.

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