Role of the p70(S6K) pathway in regulating the actin cytoskeleton and cell migration

Exp Cell Res. 2004 Jun 10;296(2):183-95. doi: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2003.12.032.


We have examined the role of endogenous 70-kDa S6 kinase (p70(S6K)) in actin cytoskeletal organization and cell migration in Swiss 3T3 fibroblasts. Association of p70(S6K) with the actin cytoskeleton was demonstrated by cosedimentation of p70(S6K) with F-actin and by subcellular fractionation in which p70(S6K) activity was measured in the F-actin cytoskeletal fraction. Immunocytochemical studies showed that p70(S6K), Akt1, PDK1, and p85 phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase) were localized to the actin arc, a caveolin-enriched cytoskeletal structure located at the leading edge of migrating cells. Using a phospho-specific antibody to mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), we find that activated mTOR is enriched at the actin arc, suggesting that activation of the p70(S6K) signaling pathway is important to cell migration. Using the actin arc to assess migration, epidermal growth factor (EGF) stimulation was found to induce actin arc formation, an effect that was blocked by rapamycin treatment. We show further that actin stress fibers may function to down-regulate p70(S6K). Fibronectin stimulated stress fiber formation in the absence of growth factors and caused an inactivation of p70(S6K). Conversely, cytochalasin D and the Rho kinase inhibitor Y-27632, both of which cause stress fiber disruption, increased p70(S6K) activity. These studies provide evidence that the p70(S6K) pathway is important for signaling at two F-actin microdomains in cells and regulates cell migration.

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cell Movement*
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism*
  • Cytoskeleton / ultrastructure
  • Down-Regulation
  • Epidermal Growth Factor / pharmacology
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Mice
  • Protein Binding
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa / biosynthesis
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa / metabolism
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction
  • Stress Fibers / physiology
  • Swiss 3T3 Cells


  • Actins
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Epidermal Growth Factor
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa