Identification of a plasma membrane Raft-associated PKB Ser473 kinase activity that is distinct from ILK and PDK1

Curr Biol. 2002 Jul 23;12(14):1251-5. doi: 10.1016/s0960-9822(02)00973-9.


Protein kinase B (PKB/Akt) has been well established as an important signaling intermediate, and its deregulation has been implicated in the development of human cancer and diabetes (reviewed in). Full activation of PKB requires phosphorylation on residues Thr308 and Ser473. While the Thr308 kinase, named 3-phosphoinositide-dependent kinase-1 (PDK1), has been extensively characterized (reviewed in ), the identity of the Ser473 kinase remains unclear. We have focused our study on the plasma membrane (PM) fraction because membrane localization is sufficient to activate PKB, and this suggests that PKB upstream kinases are constitutively active at the membrane. Here, we report the identification of a constitutively active PKB Ser473 kinase activity enriched in buoyant, detergent-insoluble plasma membrane rafts that are distinct from the cytosolic distribution of PKB and PDK1. This Ser473 kinase activity was released from the membrane by high salt, and gel filtration analysis showed that the kinase responsible is present in a large complex of >500 kDa. Two major phosphoproteins and integrin-linked kinase (ILK) were detected in partially purified PKB Ser473 kinase preparations. In contrast to previous observations, however, ILK immunoprecipitates did not retain Ser473 kinase activity. Thus, we have identified a novel raft-associated PKB Ser473 kinase, implicating a role for lipid rafts in PKB signaling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 3-Phosphoinositide-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • Cell Membrane / enzymology
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / chemistry
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • Serine / metabolism*


  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Serine
  • 3-Phosphoinositide-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • PDPK1 protein, human
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt