Dyrk1A phosphorylates parkin at Ser-131 and negatively regulates its ubiquitin E3 ligase activity

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Mutations of parkin are associated with the occurrence of autosomal recessive familial Parkinson's disease (PD). Parkin acts an E3 ubiquitin ligase, which ubiquitinates target proteins and subsequently regulates either their steady-state levels through the ubiquitin-proteasome system or biochemical properties. In this study, we identify a novel regulatory mechanism of parkin by searching for new regulatory factors. After screening human fetal brain using a yeast two hybrid assay, we found dual-specificity tyrosine-(Y)-phosphorylation-regulated kinase 1A (Dyrk1A) as a novel binding partner of parkin. We also observed that parkin interacts and co-localizes with Dyrk1A in mammalian cells. In addition, Dyrk1A directly phosphorylated parkin at Ser-131, causing the inhibition of its E3 ubiquitin ligase activity. Moreover, Dyrk1A-mediated phosphorylation reduced the binding affinity of parkin to its ubiquitin-conjugating E2 enzyme and substrate, which could be the underlying inhibitory mechanism of parkin activity. Furthermore, Dyrk1A-mediated phosphorylation inhibited the neuroprotective action of parkin against 6-hydroxydopamine toxicity in dopaminergic SH-SY5Y cells. These findings suggest that Dyrk1A acts as a novel functional modulator of parkin. Parkin phosphorylation by Dyrk1A suppresses its E3 ubiquitin ligase activity potentially contributing to the pathogenesis of PD under PD-inducing pathological conditions. Mutations of parkin are linked to autosomal recessive forms of familial Parkinson's disease (PD). According to its functional relevance in abnormal protein aggregation and neuronal cell death, a number of post-translational modifications regulate the ubiquitin E3 ligase activity of parkin. Here we propose a novel inhibitory mechanism of parkin E3 ubiquitin ligase through dual-specificity tyrosine-phosphorylation-regulated kinase 1A (Dyrk1A)-mediated phosphorylation as well as its neuroprotective action against 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced cell death. The present work suggests that parkin phosphorylation by Dyrk1A may affect the pathogenesis of PD under PD-inducing pathological conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)756-768
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Neurochemistry
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Aug 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 International Society for Neurochemistry.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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