Proline 326 in the C terminus of murine CX3CR1 prevents G-protein and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-dependent stimulation of Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase in Chinese hamster ovary cells

Christopher N Davis, Jeffrey K Harrison
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 2006, 316 (1): 356-63
Naturally occurring single nucleotide polymorphisms have been identified in human CX3CR1, the chemokine receptor for fractalkine (FKN/CX3CL1). Individuals carrying the I249/M280 variant of CX3CR1 have a lower risk of cardiovascular disease compared with those homozygous for the common variant (V249/T280). The precise molecular basis for this phenotype is unclear, although differences in FKN binding, adhesive properties, and signaling efficiency between the CX3CR1 variants have been reported. FKN binding to CX3CR1 leads to an increase in intracellular calcium, actin rearrangement, and activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinase and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathways. Regulation of these signaling pathways underlies the known roles for FKN in cell survival, proliferation, and migration. In the present study, we demonstrate that FKN stimulates phosphorylation of protein kinase B (Akt/PKB) in Chinese hamster ovary cells individually expressing the naturally occurring variants of human CX3CR1-, as well as rat CX3CR1-, but not in murine CX3CR1-expressing cells. Substitution of Pro326 in the C terminus of murine CX3CR1 with Ser (residue found in the analogous position of human CX3CR1) produced a mutant receptor that mimicked the human receptor in its ability to stimulate the phosphorylation of both Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase in a time-, PI3K-, and pertussis toxin-sensitive G-protein-dependent manner. These results identify a critical structural determinant of CX3CR1 important for activation of downstream signaling pathways.

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