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Arch Insect Biochem Physiol. 1996;31(4):465-80.

Protein phosphatase activity is required for prothoracicotropic hormone-stimulated ecdysteroidogenesis in the prothoracic glands of the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta.

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Department of Biology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, USA.


The multiple phosphorylation of ribosomal protein S6 appears to be required for prothoracicotropic hormone (PTTH)-stimulated protein synthesis and ecdysteroidogenesis by the prothoracic glands of Manduca sexta. The present study investigated the role of protein phosphatase in these phenomena by analyzing the effects of pretreatment of prothoracic glands with the phosphatase inhibitors okadaic acid and calyculin A in both basal and PTTH-stimulated glands. Okadaic acid or calyculin A treatment enhanced ribosomal S6 phosphorylation in control glands to a level similar to that observed with PTTH-stimulated glands. This treatment also prevented S6 dephosphorylation but had no apparent synergistic effect on S6 phosphorylation in PTTH-stimulated glands. Most importantly, okadaic acid or calyculin A treatment inhibited, rather than augmented, ecdysteroidogenesis in both PTTH-stimulated and non-stimulated glands. The composite data suggest that protein phosphatase activity sensitive to okadaic acid or calyculin A is required for PTTH-stimulated ecdysteroidogenesis.

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