Cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase 3 signaling complexes

Horm Metab Res. 2012 Sep;44(10):776-85. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1312646. Epub 2012 Jun 12.


The superfamily of cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterases is comprised of 11 gene families. By hydrolyzing cAMP and cGMP, PDEs are major determinants in the regulation of intracellular concentrations of cyclic nucleotides and cyclic nucleotide-dependent signaling pathways. Two PDE3 subfamilies, PDE3A and PDE3B, have been described. PDE3A and PDE3B hydrolyze cAMP and cGMP with high affinity in a mutually competitive manner and are regulators of a number of important cAMP- and cGMP-mediated processes. PDE3B is relatively more highly expressed in cells of importance for the regulation of energy homeostasis, including adipocytes, hepatocytes, and pancreatic β-cells, whereas PDE3A is more highly expressed in heart, platelets, vascular smooth muscle cells, and oocytes. Major advances have been made in understanding the different physiological impacts and biochemical basis for recruitment and subcellular localizations of different PDEs and PDE-containing macromolecular signaling complexes or signalosomes. In these discrete compartments, PDEs control cyclic nucleotide levels and regulate specific physiological processes as components of individual signalosomes which are tethered at specific locations and which contain PDEs together with cyclic nucleotide-dependent protein kinases (PKA and PKG), adenylyl cyclases, Epacs (guanine nucleotide exchange proteins activated by cAMP), phosphoprotein phosphatases, A-Kinase anchoring proteins (AKAPs), and pathway-specific regulators and effectors. This article highlights the identification of different PDE3A- and PDE3B-containing signalosomes in specialized subcellular compartments, which can increase the specificity and efficiency of intracellular signaling and be involved in the regulation of different cAMP-mediated metabolic processes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adipocytes / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cyclic Nucleotide Phosphodiesterases, Type 3 / chemistry
  • Cyclic Nucleotide Phosphodiesterases, Type 3 / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Insulin / metabolism
  • Ligands
  • Protein Binding
  • Signal Transduction*


  • Insulin
  • Ligands
  • Cyclic Nucleotide Phosphodiesterases, Type 3