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J Biol Chem. 2003 Oct 10;278(41):40032-40. Epub 2003 Jul 21.

Epidermal growth factor-mediated transient phosphorylation and membrane localization of myosin II-B are required for efficient chemotaxis.

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Department of Biochemistry, Institute of Medical Sciences, Hadassah Medical School, Hebrew University, Jerusalem 91120, Israel.


Epidermal growth factor (EGF) stimulation of prostate metastatic tumor cells results in transient phosphorylation and cellular localization of non-muscle myosin heavy chain II-B (NMHC II-B) with kinetics similar to those seen in chemotaxis. We demonstrate that expression of 18- and 72-kDa fragments derived from the NMHC II-B C terminus that contain EGF-dependent NMHC II-B phosphorylation sites serve as dominant-negative mutations for EGF-dependent NMHC II-B phosphorylation and localization. Both fragments inhibited the EGF-dependent phosphorylation by competing with NMHC II-B on the myosin heavy chain kinase. However, only expression of the 72-kDa fragment resulted in cells with abnormalities in cell shape, focal adhesions, and chemotaxis. We found that the 72-kDa (but not 18-kDa) fragment is capable of self-assembly. To our knowledge, these results provide the first strong evidence that EGF-dependent NMHC II-B phosphorylation is required for the cellular localization of NMHC II-B and that NMHC II-B is required for normal cell attachment and for chemotactic response.

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