Activation of class I phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) leads to formation of phosphatidylinositol-3,4,5-trisphophate (PIP3) and phosphatidylinositol-3,4-bisphophate (PI34P2), which spatiotemporally coordinate and regulate a myriad of cellular processes. By simultaneous quantitative imaging of PIP3 and PI34P2 in live cells, we here show that they have a distinctively different spatiotemporal distribution and history in response to growth factor stimulation, which allows them to selectively induce the membrane recruitment and activation of Akt isoforms. PI34P2 selectively activates Akt2 at both the plasma membrane and early endosomes, whereas PIP3 selectively stimulates Akt1 and Akt3 exclusively at the plasma membrane. These spatiotemporally distinct activation patterns of Akt isoforms provide a mechanism for their differential regulation of downstream signaling molecules. Collectively, our studies show that different spatiotemporal dynamics of PIP3 and PI34P2 and their ability to selectively activate key signaling proteins allow them to mediate class I PI3K signaling pathways in a spatiotemporally specific manner.
Keywords: Akt activation mechanism; PI34P2 quantification; PI3K signaling; PIP3 quantification.
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