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Patel R.,Research Service VAR 151 | Apostolatos A.,Research Service VAR 151 | Gali M.,University of South Florida | Cooper D.R.,Research Service VAR 151 | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2013

Background: Differentiation of preadipocytes into mature adipocytes (adipogenesis) is widely studied in vitro in mouse 3T3L1 cells. Results: Expression pattern of PKCβalternatively spliced variants switches during adipogenesis in 3T3L1 cells. Conclusion: PKCλII promotes adipocyte survival via Bcl2 pathway. SEAM is a novel PKCλII inhibitor. Significance: Regulation of PKCβsplice variants in adipocytes may have therapeutic implications for obesity. © 2013 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

Apostolatos H.,University of South Florida | Apostolatos A.,University of South Florida | Vickers T.,Isis Pharmaceuticals | Watson J.E.,Research Service VAR 151 | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2010

Vitamin A metabolite, all-trans-retinoic acid (RA), induces cell growth, differentiation, and apoptosis and has an emerging role in gene regulation and alternative splicing events. Protein kinase Cδ (PKCδ), a serine/threonine kinase, has a role in cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. We reported an alternatively spliced variant of human PKCδ, PKCδVIII that functions as a pro-survival protein (1). RA regulates the splicing and expression of PKCδVIII via utilization of a downstream 5′ splice site of exon 10 on PKCδ pre-mRNA. Here, we further elucidate the molecular mechanisms involved in RA regulation of alternative splicing of PKCδVIII mRNA. Overexpression and knockdown of the splicing factor SC35 (i.e. SRp30b) indicated that it is involved in PKCδVIII alternative splicing. To identify the cis-elements involved in 5′ splice site selection we cloned a minigene, which included PKCδ exon 10 and its flanking introns in the pSPL3 splicing vector. Alternative 5′ splice site utilization in the minigene was promoted by RA. Further, co-transfection of SC35 with PKCδ minigene promoted selection of 5′ splice site II. Mutation of the SC35 binding site in the PKCδ minigene abolished RA-mediated utilization of 5′ splice splice II. RNA binding assays demonstrated that the enhancer element downstream of PKCδ exon 10 is a SC35 cis-element. We conclude that SC35 is pivotal in RA-mediated PKCδ pre-mRNA alternative splicing. This study demonstrates how a nutrient, vitamin A, via its metabolite RA, regulates alternative splicing and thereby gene expression of the pro-survival protein PKCδVIII.

Apostolatos A.,University of South Florida | Song S.,Research Service VAR 151 | Acosta S.,University of South Florida | Peart M.,University of South Florida | And 6 more authors.
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2012

Insulin signaling pathways in the brain regulate food uptake and memory and learning. Insulin and protein kinase C (PKC) pathways are integrated and function closely together. PKC activation in the brain is essential for learning and neuronal repair. Intranasal delivery of insulin to the central nervous system (CNS) has been shown to improve memory, reduce cerebral atrophy, and reverse neurodegeneration. However, the neuronal molecular mechanisms of these effects have not been studied in depth. PKCδ plays a central role in cell survival. Its splice variants, PKCδI and PKCδII, are switches that determine cell survival and fate. PKCδI promotes apoptosis, whereas PKCδII promotes survival. Here, we demonstrate that insulin promotes alternative splicing of PKCδII isoform in HT22 cells. The expression of PKCδI splice variant remains unchanged. Insulin increases PKCδII alternative splicing via the PI3K pathway. We further demonstrate that Akt kinase mediates phosphorylation of the splicing factor SC35 to promote PKCδII alternative splicing. Using overexpression and knockdown assays, we demonstrate that insulin increases expression of Bcl2 and bcl-xL via PKCδII. We demonstrate increased cell proliferation and increased BrdU incorporation in insulin-treated cells as well as in HT22 cells overexpressing PKCδII. Finally, we demonstrate in vivo that intranasal insulin promotes cognitive function in mice with concomitant increases in PKCδII expression in the hippocampus. This is the first report of insulin, generally considered a growth or metabolic hormone, regulating the alternative isoform expression of a key signaling kinase in neuronal cells such that it results in increased neuronal survival.

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