mTORC1 and JNK coordinate phosphorylation of the p70S6K1 autoinhibitory domain in skeletal muscle following functional overloading

Tony D. Martin, Michael D. Dennis, Bradley S. Gordon, Scot R. Kimball, Leonard S. Jefferson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Scopus citations


The present project was designed to investigate phosphorylation of p70S6K1 in an animal model of skeletal muscle overload. Within 24 h of male Sprague-Dawley rats undergoing unilateral tenotomy to induce functional overloading of the plantaris muscle, phosphorylation of the Thr389 and Thr421/Ser424 sites on p70S6K1 was significantly elevated. Since the Thr421/Ser424 sites are purportedly mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) independent, we sought to identify the kinase(s) responsible for their phosphorylation. Initially, we used IGF-I treatment of serum-deprived HEK-293E cells as an in vitro model system, because IGF-I promotes phosphorylation of p70S6K1 on both the Thr389 and Thr421/Ser424 sites in skeletal muscle and in cells in culture. We found that, whereas the mTOR inhibitor TORIN2 prevented the IGF-I-induced phosphorylation of the Thr421/Ser424 sites, it surprisingly enhanced phosphorylation of these sites during serum deprivation. JNK inhibition with SP600125 attenuated phosphorylation of the Thr421/Ser424 sites, and in combination with TORIN2 both the effect of IGF-I and the enhanced Thr421/Ser424 phosphorylation during serum deprivation were ablated. In contrast, both JNK activation with anisomycin and knockdown of the mTORC2 subunit rictor specifically stimulated phosphorylation of the Thr421/Ser424 sites, suggesting that mTORC2 represses JNK-mediated phosphorylation of these sites. The role of JNK in mediating p70S6K1 phosphorylation was confirmed in the animal model noted above, where rats treated with SP600125 exhibited attenuated Thr421/Ser424 phosphorylation. Overall, the results provide evidence that the mTORC1 and JNK signaling pathways coordinate the site-specific phosphorylation of p70S6K1. They also identify a novel role for mTORC1 and mTORC2 in the inhibition of JNK.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E1397-E1405
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 2014


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

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