Activated Akt has been previously implicated in acting on RS domain-containing proteins. However, it has been questioned whether its action is direct or it is mediated by co-existing SR kinase activity. To address this issue we studied in detail the phosphorylation of Lamin B Receptor (LBR) by Akt. Using synthetic peptides and a set of recombinant proteins expressing mutants of the LBR RS domain we now demonstrate that while all serines of the RS domain represent more or less equal phosphoacceptor sites for SRPK1, Ser80 and Ser82 are mainly targeted by Akt. 3D-modeling combined with molecular dynamics (MD) simulations show that amongst short, overlapping LBR RS-containing peptides complying with the minimum Akt recognition consensus sequence, only those bearing phosphosites either at Ser80 or Ser82 are able to fit into the active site of Akt, at least as effectively as its known substrate, GSK3-β. Combined our results provide evidence that Akt kinases directly phosphorylate an RS domain-containing protein and that both the residues N-terminal the phosphosite and at position +1 are essential for Akt specificity, with the latter substrate position being compatible with the arginine residue of RS-repeats.
Voukkalis, N., Koutroumani, M., Zarkadas, C., Nikolakaki, E., Vlassi, M., & Giannakouros, T. (2016). SRPK1 and akt protein kinases phosphorylate the rs domain of lamin b receptor with distinct specificity: A combined biochemical and in silico approach. PLoS ONE, 11(4). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0154198