Ser88 phosphorylation regulates dynein light chain 1 (DLC1) function in the mouse mammary gland

Chunying Song, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


Dynein light chain 1 (DLC1) is a highly conserved and ubiquitously expressed protein which might have critical cellular function as total loss of DLC1 caused Drosophila embryonic death. Despite many proteins and RNAs interaction with it identified, DLC1's function(s) and regulation are largely unknown. Recently, DLC1 was identified as a physiological substrate of P21-activate kinase 1(Pak1) kinase from a human mammary cDNA library in a yeast-2-hybridization screening assay. Studies in primary human tumors and cell culture implicated that DLC1 could promote mammary cancerous phenotypes, and more importantly, Ser88 phosphorylation of DLC1by Pak1 kinase was found to be essential for DLC1's tumorigenic activities. Based on the above tissue culture studies, we hypothesized that Ser88 phosphorylation regulates DLC1. To test this hypothesis, we generated two transgenic mouse models: MMTV-DLC1 and MMTV-DLC1-S88A mice with mammary specific expression of the DLC1 and DLC1-S88A cDNAs. Both of the transgenic mice mammary glands showed rare tumor incidence which indicated DLC1 alone may not be sufficient for tumorigenesis in vivo. However, these mice showed a significant alteration of mammary development. Mammary glands from the MMTV-DLC1 mice had hyperbranching and alveolar hyperplasia, with elevated cell proliferation. Intriguingly, these phenotypes were not seen in the mammary glands from the MMTV-S88A mice. Furthermore, while MMTV-DLC1 glands were normal during involution, MMTV-S88A mice showed accelerated mammary involution with increase apoptosis and altered expression of involution-associated genes. Further analysis of the MMTV-S88A glands showed they had increased steady state level of Bim protein which might be responsible for the early involution. Finally, our in vitro data showed that Ser88 phosphorylation abolished DLC1 dimer and consequently might disturb its interaction with Bim and destabilize Bim. Collectively, our findings provided in vivo evidence that Ser88 phosphorylation of DLC1 can regulate DLC1's function. In addition, Ser88 phosphorylation might be critical for DLC1 dimer-monomer transition.

Subject Area

Cellular biology

Recommended Citation

Song, Chunying, "Ser88 phosphorylation regulates dynein light chain 1 (DLC1) function in the mouse mammary gland" (2007). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI3256562.