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Phosphorylation of Pit-1 by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 at serine 126 is associated with cell proliferation and poor prognosis in prolactinomas
Open Chemistry  (IF1.554),  Pub Date : 2021-01-01, DOI: 10.1515/chem-2021-0070
Weiyan Xie, Qiuyue Fang, Jing Guo, Lei Gong, Chuzhong Li, Yazhuo Zhang

Pit-1 (POU1F1) is a POU-homeodomain transcription factor, and it is one of the most important tissue-specific transcription factors in pituitary development. Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (CDK5) is a protein kinase that can phosphorylate many key transcription factors, but the mechanism under which CDK5 phosphorylates Pit-1 is unclear. To investigate whether CDK5 can regulate cell proliferation and promote hormone secretion through phosphorylation of Ser126-Pit-1 in prolactinomas, we generated an antibody that specifically recognizes phosphorylated serine at position 126 of Pit-1 (Ser126-Pit-1). We used western blotting to detect the level of Pit-1 phosphorylation and observed the proliferation and apoptosis of GH3 cells with different levels of Pit-1 phosphorylation by clone formation experiments, cell viability assays, and flow cytometry. ELISA was used to measure the level of PRL in the supernatant of GH3 cells. Tissue microarrays and immunohistochemistry were used to evaluate the expression of the phosphorylation level of Ser126-Pit-1 (pSer126-Pit-1) in prolactinomas. Our data indicated that Ser126-Pit-1 is specifically phosphorylated by CDK5 and high-level pSer-126-Pit-1 can promote cell proliferation and PRL secretion. In addition, a higher level of pSer-126-Pit-1 correlates with a worse prognosis in patients with prolactinoma. Our results show that CDK5 mediated Ser126-Pit-1 phosphorylation and regulated prolactinoma progression and PRL secretion.