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E-GEOD-28912 - Role of Serine 134 phosphorylation of the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) in glucocorticoid signaling

Released on 4 October 2011, last updated on 26 June 2012
Homo sapiens
Samples (12)
Array (1)
Protocols (8)
In response to environmental stressors and a variety of inflammatory cytokines, p38 MAPKs become directly activated. Here we report the human glucocorticoid receptor (GR) Serine 134 as a novel target for p38 MAPK. Unlike most other phosphorylation events that occur on the GR, phosphorylation of Ser134 was found to be hormone-independent in several human and rat cell types. Instead we found phosphorylation of Ser134 was induced by a variety of stress-activating stimuli, including: glucose starvation, ultraviolet irradiation, osmotic shock, and oxidative stress. Pharmacological inhibitors and shRNA-mediated knockdown experiments correlate this phosphorylation with the activation of p38 MAPK. Compared to wild-type GR, cells expressing a mutant receptor incapable of phosphorylation at Ser134 (S134A GR) had a significantly altered hormone-dependent genome-wide transcriptional response to glucocorticoids. Moreover, we show that although WT GR regulated roughly half as many genes as S134A GR, WT receptor selectively activated significantly more genes associated with endocrine and inflammatory disease than the mutant receptor, suggesting that the phosphorylation status of Ser134 is critical for modulating GR function. Phosphorylation of Ser134 did not alter either nuclear translocation or the stability of the GR protein in the absence or presence of ligand. However, phosphorylation of Ser134 significantly increased the association of the GR with the zeta isoform the 14-3-3 class of signaling proteins, resulting in a blunted hormone-dependent transcriptional response of LAD1 and IGFBP1 but not GILZ. Together these data suggest that the phosphorylation of Ser134 acts as a molecular sensor on the GR, monitoring the level of cellular stress to allow for altered 14-3-3zeta cofactor association, ultimately modifying glucocorticoid signaling in a gene-dependent manner. Our results reveal one mechanism that may allow cellular stress to dictate the transcriptional response of cells to hormone. U2OS cells, a human osteosarcoma cell line, were transfected with either WT GR or S134A GR and put under antibiotic selection to produce a stable mixed population of cells expressing comparable levels of GR. 10^6 cells were treated with 100nM Dexamethasone (DEX) or vehicle control for 6 hours. Three biological and one hybridization replicate are included for each sample.
Experiment type
transcription profiling by array 
NIEHS Microarray Core <>, Amy J Galliher-Beckley, Jason G Williams, John A Cidlowski
Investigation descriptionE-GEOD-28912.idf.txt
Sample and data relationshipE-GEOD-28912.sdrf.txt
Raw data (1)
Processed data (1)
Array designA-AGIL-28.adf.txt