Heat shock protein 27 is a substrate of cGMP-dependent protein kinase in intact human platelets: phosphorylation-induced actin polymerization caused by HSP27 mutants

J Biol Chem. 2001 Mar 9;276(10):7108-13. doi: 10.1074/jbc.m009234200.


Phosphorylation of heat shock protein 27 (Hsp27) in human platelets by mitogen-activated protein kinase-activated protein kinase (MAPKAP) 2 is associated with signaling events involved in platelet aggregation and regulation of microfilament organization. We now show that Hsp27 is also phosphorylated by cGMP-dependent protein kinase (cGK), a signaling system important for the inhibition of platelet aggregation. Stimulation of washed platelets with 8-para-chlorophenylthio-cGMP, a cGK specific activator, resulted in a time-dependent phosphorylation of Hsp27. This is supported by the ability of cGK to phosphorylate Hsp27 in vitro to an extent comparable with the cGK-mediated phosphorylation of its established substrate vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein. Studies with Hsp27 mutants identified threonine 143 as a yet uncharacterized phosphorylation site in Hsp27 specifically targeted by cGK. To test the hypothesis that cGK could inhibit platelet aggregation by phosphorylating Hsp27 and interfering with the MAPKAP kinase phosphorylation of Hsp27, the known MAPKAP kinase 2-phosphorylation sites (Ser15, Ser78, and Ser82) as well as Thr143 were replaced by negatively charged amino acids, which are considered to mimic phosphate groups, and tested in actin polymerization experiments. Mimicry at the MAPKAP kinase 2 phosphorylation sites led to mutants with a stimulating effect on actin polymerization. Mutation of the cGK-specific site Thr143 alone had no effect on actin polymerization, but in the MAPKAP kinase 2 phosphorylation-mimicking mutant, this mutation reduced the stimulation of actin polymerization significantly. These data suggest that phosphorylation of Hsp27 and Hsp27-dependent regulation of actin microfilaments contribute to the inhibitory effects of cGK on platelet function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Binding Sites
  • Blood Platelets / metabolism*
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cyclic GMP / analogs & derivatives
  • Cyclic GMP / pharmacology
  • Cyclic GMP-Dependent Protein Kinases / chemistry*
  • Cyclic GMP-Dependent Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Electrophoresis, Gel, Two-Dimensional
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • HSP27 Heat-Shock Proteins
  • Heat-Shock Proteins*
  • Humans
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Molecular Chaperones
  • Mutagenesis, Site-Directed
  • Neoplasm Proteins / chemistry*
  • Neoplasm Proteins / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Platelet Aggregation
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism
  • Serine / chemistry
  • Signal Transduction
  • Spectrometry, Fluorescence
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Electrospray Ionization
  • Substrate Specificity
  • Thionucleotides / pharmacology
  • Threonine / chemistry
  • Time Factors
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases


  • Actins
  • HSP27 Heat-Shock Proteins
  • HSPB1 protein, human
  • Heat-Shock Proteins
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Molecular Chaperones
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Thionucleotides
  • Threonine
  • Serine
  • 8-((4-chlorophenyl)thio)cyclic-3',5'-GMP
  • MAP-kinase-activated kinase 2
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • Cyclic GMP-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Cyclic GMP