The cyclic adenosine monophosphate (AMP) response element-binding protein, CREB, often modulates stress responses. Here, we report that CREB suppresses the glioblastoma proliferative effect of the stress-induced acetylcholinesterase variant, AChE-R. In human U87MG glioblastoma cells, AChE-R formed a triple complex with protein kinase C (PKC) epsilon and the scaffold protein RACK1, enhanced PKCepsilon phosphorylation, and facilitated BrdU incorporation. Either overexpressed CREB, or antisense destruction of AChE-R mRNA, PKC, or protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitors-but not CREB combined with PKC inhibition suppressed-this proliferation, suggesting that CREB's repression of this process involves a PKC-mediated pathway, whereas impaired CREB regulation allows AChE-R-induced, PKA-mediated proliferation of glioblastoma tumors.
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