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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Reactive oxygen species mediate the activation of Akt/protein kinase B by angiotensin II in vascular smooth muscle cells.

Angiotensin II, a hypertrophic/anti-apoptotic hormone, utilizes reactive oxygen species (ROS) as growth-related signaling molecules in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). Recently, the cell survival protein kinase Akt/protein kinase B ( PKB) was proposed to be involved in protein synthesis. Here we show that angiotensin II causes rapid phosphorylation of Akt/ PKB (6- +/- 0.4-fold increase). Exogenous H(2)O(2) (50-200 microM) also stimulates Akt/ PKB phosphorylation (maximal 8- +/- 0.2-fold increase), suggesting that Akt/ PKB activation is redox-sensitive. Both angiotensin II and H(2)O(2) stimulation of Akt/ PKB are abrogated by the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase ( PI3-K) inhibitors wortmannin and LY294002 (2(4-morpholinyl)-8-phenyl-4H-1-benzopyran-4-one), suggesting that PI3-K is an upstream mediator of Akt/ PKB activation in VSMCs. Furthermore, diphenylene iodonium, an inhibitor of flavin-containing oxidases, or overexpression of catalase to block angiotensin II- induced intracellular H(2)O(2) production significantly inhibits angiotensin II- induced Akt/ PKB phosphorylation, indicating a role for ROS in agonist-induced Akt/ PKB activation. In VSMCs infected with dominant-negative Akt/ PKB, angiotensin II-stimulated [(3)H]leucine incorporation is attenuated. Thus, our studies indicate that Akt/ PKB is part of the remarkable spectrum of angiotensin II signaling pathways and provide insight into the highly organized signaling mechanisms coordinated by ROS, which mediate the hypertrophic response to angiotensin II in VSMCs.[1]


  1. Reactive oxygen species mediate the activation of Akt/protein kinase B by angiotensin II in vascular smooth muscle cells. Ushio-Fukai, M., Alexander, R.W., Akers, M., Yin, Q., Fujio, Y., Walsh, K., Griendling, K.K. J. Biol. Chem. (1999) [Pubmed]
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