Akt enhances Runx2 protein stability by regulating Smurf2 function during osteoblast differentiation

You Hee Choi, Yeon Jin Kim, Hyung Min Jeong, Yun Hye Jin, Chang Yeol Yeo, Kwang Youl Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations

Abstract

Runx2 plays essential roles in bone formation and chondrocyte maturation. Akt promotes osteoblast differentiation induced by the bone morphogenetic proteins BMP2 and enhances the function and transcriptional activity of Runx2. However, the precise molecular mechanism underlying the relationship between Runx2 and Akt is not well understood. In this study, we examined the role of Akt in regulating Runx2 function. We found that Akt increases the stability of Runx2 protein. However, the level of Runx2 mRNA was not affected by Akt, and we did not find any evidence for direct modification of Runx2 by Akt. Instead, we found evidence that Akt induces the phosphorylation of the Smad ubiquitination regulatory factor Smurf2 and decreases the level of Smurf2 protein through ubiquitin/proteasome-mediated degradation of Smurf2. Akt also alleviates Smurf2-mediated suppression of Runx2 transcriptional activity. Taken together, our results suggest that Akt regulates osteoblast differentiation, at least in part, by enhancing the protein stability and transcriptional activity of Runx2 through regulation of ubiquitin/proteasome-mediated degradation of Smurf2. Akt increases the stability of Runx2 protein. But the level of Runx2 mRNA was not affected by Akt and we could not detect any evidence for direct modification of Runx2 by Akt. Akt induces the phosphorylation of Smurf2 and decreases the level of Smurf2 protein through ubiquitin-proteasome-mediated degradation of Smurf2. Akt also alleviates Smurf2-mediated suppression of Runx2 transcriptional activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3656-3666
Number of pages11
JournalFEBS Journal
Volume281
Issue number16
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • Akt
  • differentiation
  • osteoblast
  • Runx2
  • Smurf2

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