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Abstract

Bradykinin (BK) plays a major role in producing peripheral sensitization in response to peripheral inflammation and in pain transmission in the central nerve system (CNS). Because BK activates protein kinase C (PKC) through phospholipase C (PLC)-β and myristoylated alanine-rich C kinase substrate (MARCKS) has been found to be a substrate of PKC, we explored the possibility that BK could induce MARCKS phosphorylation and regulate its function. BK stimulation induced transient MARCKS phosphorylation on Ser159 with a peak at 1 min in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. By contrast, PKC activation by the phorbol ester phorbol 12,13-dibutyrate (PDBu) elicited MARCKS phosphorylation which lasted more than 10 min. Western blotting analyses and glutathione S-transferase (GST) pull-down analyses showed that the phosphorylation by BK was the result of activation of the PKC-dependent RhoA/Rho-associated coiled-coil kinase (ROCK) pathway. Protein phosphatase (PP) 2A inhibitors calyculin A and fostriecin inhibited the dephosphorylation of MARCKS after BK-induced phosphorylation. Moreover, immunoprecipitation analyses showed that PP2A interacts with MARCKS. These results indicated that PP2A is the dominant PP of MARCKS after BK stimulation. We established SH-SY5Y cell lines expressing wild-type MARCKS and unphosphorylatable MARCKS, and cell morphology changes after cell stimulation were studied. PDBu induced lamellipodia formation on the neuroblastoma cell line SH-SY5Y and the morphology was sustained, whereas BK induced neurite outgrowth of the cells via lamellipodia-like actin accumulation that depended on transient MARCKS phosphorylation. Thus these findings show a novel BK signal cascade—that is, BK promotes neurite outgrowth through transient MARCKS phosphorylation involving the PKC-dependent RhoA/ROCK pathway and PP2A in a neuroblastoma cell line. J. Cell. Physiol. 227: 618–629, 2012. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.