Neuronal polarity is regulated by glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3β) independently of Akt/PKB serine phosphorylation

Gärtner, A., Huang, X. and Hall, A. (2006) Neuronal polarity is regulated by glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3β) independently of Akt/PKB serine phosphorylation. Journal of Cell Science, 119(19), pp. 3927-3934. (doi: 10.1242/​jcs.03159)

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Publisher's URL:​jcs.03159


An essential step during the development of hippocampal neurons is the polarised outgrowth of a single axon. Recently, it has been suggested that inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) via Akt/PKB-dependent phosphorylation of Ser9, specifically at the tip of the presumptive axon, is required for selective axonal outgrowth. We now report that, by using neurons from double knock-in mice in which Ser9 and Ser21 of the two GSK-3β isoforms have been replaced by Ala, polarity develops independently of phosphorylation at these sites. Nevertheless, global inhibition of GSK-3β disturbs polarity development by leading to the formation of multiple axon-like processes in both control and knock-in neurons. This unpolarised outgrowth is accompanied by the symmetric delivery of membrane components to all neurites. Finally, the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) protein accumulates at the tip of one neurite before and during axon elongation, but global inhibition of GSK-3β leads to APC protein accumulation in all neurites. We conclude that GSK-3β inhibition promotes the development of neuronal polarity, but that this is not mediated by Akt/PKB-dependent phosphorylation.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Huang, Dr Xu
Authors: Gärtner, A., Huang, X., and Hall, A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Cancer Sciences
Journal Name:Journal of Cell Science
Publisher:The Company of Biologists Ltd.
ISSN (Online):1477-9137

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