Author(s): Hartigan JA, Johnson GV
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Abstract Calcium is a universal intracellular signaling molecule. Through variations in both the amplitude and frequency of intracellular calcium increases, the same calcium ion can elicit different responses. In this report, we investigated the effect of a calcium transient, lasting 2-5 min, on alterations in the phosphorylation state of the cytoskeletal protein, tau. Transient increases in calcium result in a prolonged (1-4 h) approximately 60\% increase in tau phosphorylation at the Tau-1 epitope. These increases in tau phosphorylation appear to be more dependent upon the duration of the increase in intracellular calcium and less on the amplitude. The calcium-induced increases in tau phosphorylation are not dependent upon protein synthesis, nor are protein kinase C or calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II involved in the response. However, the calcium-induced increase in tau phosphorylation was inhibited by lithium, a noncompetitive inhibitor of glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (GSK-3beta), and by the tyrosine kinase inhibitor, genistein. Furthermore, transient increases in calcium resulted in a prolonged increase in GSK-3beta tyrosine phosphorylation concomitant with the increase in tau phosphorylation. Therefore, this study is the first to indicate that transient increases in intracellular calcium result in increased tyrosine phosphorylation and activation of GSK-3beta which subsequently results in a sustained increase in the phosphorylation state of tau.
This article was published in J Biol Chem
and referenced in Journal of Pain & Relief