Actin dysfunction induces cell cycle delay at G2/M with sustained ERK and RSK activation in IMR-90 normal human fibroblasts

Deepmala Shrestha, Daeun Choi, Kiwon Song

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3 Citations (Scopus)


The actin cytoskeleton plays a key role in the entry of mitosis as well as in cytokinesis. In a previous study, we showed that actin disruption delays mitotic entry at G2/M by sustained activation of extracellular signal-related kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) in primary cells but not in transformed cancer cell lines. Here, we examined the mechanism of cell cycle delay at G2/M by actin dysfunction in IMR-90 normal human fibroblasts. We observed that de-polymerization of actin with cytochalasin D (CD) constitutively activated ribosomal S6 kinase (RSK) and induced inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdc2 (Tyr 15) in IMR-90 cells. In the presence of an actin defect in IMR-90 cells, activating phosphorylation of Wee1 kinase (Ser 642) and inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdc25C (Ser 216) was also maintained. However, when kinase-dead RSK (DN-RSK) was overexpressed, we observed sustained activation of ERK1/2, but no delay in the G2/M transition, demonstrating that RSK functions downstream of ERK in cell cycle delay by actin dysfunction. In DN-RSK overexpressing IMR-90 cells treated with CD, phosphorylation of Cdc25C (Ser 216) was blocked and phosphorylation of Cdc2 (Tyr 15) was decreased, but the phosphorylation of Wee1 (Ser 642) was maintained, demonstrating that RSK directly controls phosphorylation of Cdc25C (Ser 216), but not the activity of Wee1. These results strongly suggest that actin dysfunction in primary cells activates ERK1/2 to inhibit Cdc2, delaying the cell cycle at G2/M by activating downstream RSK, which phosphorylates and blocks Cdc25C, and by directly activating Wee1.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-443
Number of pages8
JournalMolecules and cells
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to thank Dr. Jun-ichi Abe (University of Rochester Medical Center) for generously providing dominant-negative RSK (DN-RSK) in pCMV-Tag2B. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded to K. Song (No. NRF-2017R1A2B40097). D. Shrestha was supported in part by the BK21 and BK21 PLUS programs.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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