A hinge at the central helix of the regulatory light chain of myosin is critical for phosphorylation-dependent regulation of smooth muscle myosin motor activity

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Physiology

Publication Date


Document Type



Actins; Adenosine Triphosphatases; Amino Acid Sequence; Animals; Base Sequence; DNA Primers; Enzyme Activation; Molecular Sequence Data; Muscle, Smooth; Myosin Light Chains; Phosphorylation; Protein Conformation; Rabbits; Turkeys


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


The motor function of smooth muscle myosin is activated by phosphorylation of the regulatory light chain (RLC) at Ser19. However, the molecular mechanism by which the phosphorylation activates the motor function is not yet understood. In the present study, we focused our attention on the role of the central helix of RLC for regulation. The flexible region at the middle of the central helix (Gly95-Pro98) was substituted or deleted to various extents, and the effects of the deletion or substitution on the regulation of the motor activity of myosin were examined. Deletion of Gly95-Asp97, Gly95-Thr96, or Thr96-Asp97 decreased the actin-translocating activity of myosin a little, but the phosphorylation-dependent regulation of the motor activity was not disrupted. In contrast, the deletion of Gly95-Pro98 of RLC completely abolished the actin translocating activity of phosphorylated myosin. However, the unregulated myosin long subfragment 1 containing this RLC mutant showed motor activity the same as that containing the wild type RLC. Since long subfragment 1 motor activity is unregulated by phosphorylation, i.e. constitutively active, these results suggest that the deletion of these residues at the central helix of RLC disrupts the phosphorylation-mediated activation mechanism but not the motor function of myosin itself. On the other hand, the elimination of Pro98 or substitution of Gly95-Pro98 by Ala resulted in the activation of actin translocating activity of dephosphorylated myosin, whereas it did not affect the motor activity of phosphorylated myosin. Together, these results clearly indicate the importance of the hinge at the central helix of RLC on the phosphorylation-mediated regulation of smooth muscle myosin.

DOI of Published Version



J Biol Chem. 1998 Jul 10;273(28):17702-7.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The Journal of biological chemistry

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