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Dev Biol 1997 Nov 15;1912:182-90. doi: 10.1006/dbio.1997.8695.
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MAP and cdc2 kinase activities at germinal vesicle breakdown in Chaetopterus.

Eckberg WR .

In frog oocytes, activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK, ERK) leads to activation of cdc2 and germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD). By contrast, in starfish, MAPK is activated after GVBD. Here we have examined the relative involvements of MAPK and cdc2 in GVBD of Chaetopterus oocytes. MAPK was rapidly tyrosine-phosphorylated and activated (within 1-2 min) in response to exposure of the oocytes either to natural seawater (the normal trigger of GVBD in this organism) or to the tumor-promoting phorbol ester 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol 13-acetate (TPA), which can also elicit GVBD. This response preceded the tyrosine dephosphorylation and activation of cdc2 by several minutes. MAPK phosphorylation and activation were transient, lasting only until GVBD occurred and the spindle migrated to the cortex. The enzyme was not phosphorylated again as a result of egg activation. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that the activation of MAPK has a role in GVBD. However, PD 98059, a potent and selective inhibitor of MEK, the protein kinase that phosphorylates and activates MAPK, blocked the phosphorylation of MAPK but did not block GVBD, the dephosphorylation and activation of cdc2, or spindle formation and migration. Oocytes that underwent GVBD in PD 98059 could be fertilized and cleaved normally. Ionophore A23187, although it caused germinal vesicles to disappear and caused transient phosphorylation of MAPK, did not cause dephosphorylation of cdc2, and therefore this disappearance is artifactual. These results suggest that MAPK activation is neither obligatory nor sufficient for either GVBD or meiotic metaphase arrest in Chaetopterus and that activation of MAPK and cdc2 occur on independent, parallel pathways.

PubMed ID: 9398433
Article link: Dev Biol
Grant support: [+]

Genes referenced: LOC576066 LOC586799