Phosphorylation and 14-3-3 binding of Arabidopsis trehalose-phosphate synthase  5 in response to 2-deoxyglucose

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*(fax +44 1382 223778; e-mail c.mackintosh@dundee.ac.uk).

Summary

Trehalose-6-phosphate is a ‘sugar signal’ that regulates plant metabolism and development. The Arabidopsis genome encodes trehalose-6-phosphate synthase (TPS) and trehalose-6-phosphatase (TPP) enzymes. It also encodes class II proteins (TPS isoforms 5–11) that contain both TPS-like and TPP-like domains, although whether these have enzymatic activity is unknown. In this paper, we show that TPS5, 6 and 7 are phosphoproteins that bind to 14-3-3 proteins, by using 14-3-3 affinity chromatography, 14-3-3 overlay assays, and by co-immunoprecipitating TPS5 and 14-3-3 isoforms from cell extracts. GST–TPS5 bound to 14-3-3s after in vitro phosphorylation at Ser22 and Thr49 by either mammalian AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) or partially purified plant Snf1-related protein kinase  1 (SnRK1s). Dephosphorylation of TPS5, or mutation of either Ser22 or Thr49, abolished binding to 14-3-3s. Ser22 and Thr49 are both conserved in TPS5, 7, 9 and 10. When GST–TPS5 was expressed in human HEK293 cells, Thr49 was phosphorylated in response to 2-deoxyglucose or phenformin, stimuli that activate the AMPK via the upstream kinase LKB1. 2-deoxyglucose stimulated Thr49 phosphorylation of endogenous TPS5 in Arabidopsis cells, whereas phenformin did not. Moreover, extractable SnRK1 activity was increased in Arabidopsis cells in response to 2-deoxyglucose. The plant kinase was inactivated by dephosphorylation and reactivated by phosphorylation with human LKB1, indicating that elements of the SnRK1/AMPK pathway are conserved in Arabidopsis and human cells. We hypothesize that coordinated phosphorylation and 14-3-3 binding of nitrate reductase (NR), 6-phosphofructo-2-kinase/fructose-2,6-bisphosphatase (F2KP) and class II TPS isoforms mediate responses to signals that activate SnRK1.

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