FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology

Differential ubiquitylation of the mineralocorticoid receptor is regulated by phosphorylation.

PMID 22798426


Aldosterone stimulation of the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) is involved in numerous physiological responses, including Na+ homeostasis, blood pressure control, and heart failure. Aldosterone binding to MR promotes different post-translational modifications that regulate MR nuclear translocation, gene expression, and finally receptor degradation. Here, we show that aldosterone stimulates rapid phosphorylation of MR via ERK1/2 in a dose-dependent manner (from 0.1 to 10 nM) in renal epithelial cells. This phosphorylation induces an increase of MR apparent molecular weight, with a maximal upward shift of 30 kDa. Strikingly, these modifications are critical for the regulation of the MR ubiquitylation state. Indeed, we find that MR is monoubiquitylated in its basal state, and this status is sustained by the tumor suppressor gene 101 (Tsg101). Phosphorylation leads to disruption of MR/Tsg101 association and monoubiquitin removal. These events prompt polyubiquitin-dependent destabilization of MR and degradation. Preventing MR phosphorylation by ERK1/2 inhibition or mutation of target serines affects the sequential mechanisms of MR ubiquitylation and inhibits the aldosterone-mediated degradation. Our data provide a novel model of negative feedback of aldosterone signaling, involving sequential phosphorylation, monoubiquitin removal and subsequent polyubiquitylation/degradation of MR.

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