Regulation of 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase activity by the noncatalytic beta and gamma subunits.

The mammalian 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase is a heterotrimer consisting of an alpha catalytic subunit and beta and gamma noncatalytic subunits, each of which is represented in a larger isoprotein family, related to the SNF1 kinase and its interacting proteins in yeast. In this study, we have used mammalian cell transfection ...
to compare the activities of the two alpha subunit isoforms, alpha-1 and alpha-2, and to study the influence of the noncatalytic subunits on enzyme subunit association and activity. Expression of epitope-tagged protein subunits in COS7 cells indicates detectable but low level kinase activity for each of the two catalytic alpha subunits. Co-expression of alpha subunits with the beta or gamma subunits modestly increases kinase activity accompanied by the formation of alpha/beta or alpha/gamma heterodimers. Co-expression of all three subunits, however, is accompanied by a 50-110-fold increase in kinase activity with the formation of a heterotrimeric complex. In addition to binding of each noncatalytic subunit to the alpha subunit, the beta and gamma subunits bind to each other, likely resulting in a more stable heterotrimeric complex. The increase in kinase activity associated with expression of this heterotrimer is due both to an increase in enzyme-specific activity (units/enzyme mass) and to an apparent enhanced alpha subunit expression. Co-expression of a catalytically defective alpha subunit or the beta/gamma-binding COOH-terminal domain of the alpha subunit results in reduced heterotrimeric kinase activity. The synergistic positive regulatory roles for both the noncatalytic beta and gamma subunits of 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase contrasts with the Snf1p kinase, where only heterodimers of Snf1p and Snf4p seem to be required for maximum kinase activity.
Mesh Terms:
AMP-Activated Protein Kinases, Base Sequence, Enzyme Activation, Isoenzymes, Molecular Sequence Data, Multienzyme Complexes, Mutagenesis, Site-Directed, Protein Binding, Protein Kinase Inhibitors, Protein Kinases, Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases, Recombinant Proteins, Structure-Activity Relationship
J. Biol. Chem.
Date: Jul. 26, 1996
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