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Keywords:

  • cyclic adenosine monophosphate response element binding protein;
  • parathyroid hormone;
  • osteoblasts;
  • epidermal growth factor;
  • MAPK

Abstract

Previously, we have shown that parathyroid hormone (PTH) transactivation of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) response element binding protein (CREB) requires both serine 129 (S129) and serine 133 (S133) in rat osteosarcoma cells UMR 106-01 (UMR) cells. Furthermore, although protein kinase A (PKA) is responsible for phosphorylation at S133, glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK-3β) activity is required and may be responsible for phosphorylation of CREB at S129. Here, we show, using the GAL4-CREB reporter system, that epidermal growth factor (EGF) can transactivate CREB in UMR cells in addition to PTH. Additionally, treatment of UMR cells with both PTH and EGF results in greater than additive transactivation of CREB. Furthermore, using mutational analysis we show that S129 and S133 are required for EGF-induced transcriptional activity. EGF activates members of the MAPK family including p38 and extracellular signal—activated kinases (ERKs), and treatment of UMR cells with either the p38 inhibitor (SB203580) or the MEK inhibitor (PD98059) prevents phosphorylation of CREB at S133 by EGF but not by PTH. Treatment of cells with either SB203580 or PD98059 alone or together significantly inhibits transactivation of CREB by EGF but not by PTH, indicating that EGF regulates CREB phosphorylation and transactivation through p38 and ERKs and PTH does not. Finally, the greater than additive transactivation of CREB by PTH and EGF is significantly inhibited by the PKA inhibitor H-89 or by cotreatment with SB203580 and PD98059. Thus, several different signaling pathways in osteoblastic cells can converge on and regulate CREB activity. This suggests, in vivo, that circulating agents such as PTH and EGF are acting in concert to exert their effects.