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Cell Signal. 2008 Oct;20(10):1715-24. doi: 10.1016/j.cellsig.2008.05.001. Epub 2008 May 16.

Neuronal AKAP150 coordinates PKA and Epac-mediated PKB/Akt phosphorylation.

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Department of Molecular Neurobiology, University of Groningen, 9750 AA, Haren, The Netherlands.


In diverse neuronal processes ranging from neuronal survival to synaptic plasticity cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP)-dependent signaling is tightly connected with the protein kinase B (PKB)/Akt pathway but the precise nature of this connection remains unknown. In the current study we investigated the effect of two mainstream pathways initiated by cAMP, cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) and exchange proteins directly activated by cAMP (Epac1 and Epac2) on PKB/Akt phosphorylation in primary cortical neurons and HT-4 cells. We demonstrate that PKA activation leads to a reduction of PKB/Akt phosphorylation, whereas activation of Epac has the opposite effect. This effect of Epac on PKB/Akt phosphorylation was mediated by Rap activation. The increase in PKB/Akt phosphorylation after Epac activation could be blocked by pretreatment with Epac2 siRNA and to a somewhat smaller extent by Epac1 siRNA. PKA, PKB/Akt and Epac were all shown to establish complexes with neuronal A-kinase anchoring protein150 (AKAP150). Interestingly, activation of Epac increased phosphorylation of PKB/Akt complexed to AKAP150. From experiments using PKA-binding deficient AKAP150 and peptides disrupting PKA anchoring to AKAPs, we conclude that AKAP150 acts as a key regulator in the two cAMP pathways to control PKB/Akt phosphorylation.

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