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《The Journal of Physiology》 3:681-700 (2015)

In vivo roles for myosin phosphatase targeting subunit-1 phosphorylation sites T694 and T852 in bladder smooth muscle contraction: MYPT1 phosphorylation and force maintenance

Chen, Cai-Ping; Chen, Xin; Qiao, Yan-Ning; Wang, Pei; He, Wei-Qi; Zhang, Cheng-Hai; Zhao, Wei; Gao, Yun-Qian; Chen, Chen; Tao, Tao; Sun, Jie; Wang, Ye; Gao, Ning; Kamm, Kristine E.; Stull, James T.; Zhu, Min-Sheng

Abstract:

Force production and maintenance in smooth muscle is largely controlled by different signalling modules that fine tune myosin regulatory light chain (RLC) phosphorylation, which relies on a balance between Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent myosin light chain kinase (MLCK) and myosin light chain phosphatase (MLCP) activities. To investigate the regulation of MLCP activity in vivo, we analysed the role of two phosphorylation sites on MYPT1 (regulatory subunit of MLCP) that biochemically inhibit MLCP activity in vitro. MYPT1 is constitutively phosphorylated at T694 by unidentified kinases in vivo, whereas the T852 site is phosphorylated by RhoA-associated protein kinase (ROCK). We established two mouse lines with alanine substitution of T694 or T852. Isolated bladder smooth muscle from T852A mice displayed no significant changes in RLC phosphorylation or force responses, but force was inhibited with a ROCK inhibitor. In contrast, smooth muscles containing the T694A mutation showed a significant reduction of force along with reduced RLC phosphorylation. The contractile responses of T694A mutant smooth muscle were also independent of ROCK activation. Thus, phosphorylation of MYPT1 T694, but not T852, is a primary mechanism contributing to inhibition of MLCP activity and enhancement of RLC phosphorylation in vivo. The constitutive phosphorylation of MYPT1 T694 may provide a mechanism for regulating force maintenance of smooth muscle.