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Role of a pineal cAMP-operated arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase/14-3-3-binding switch in melatonin synthesis.

Ganguly S., Gastel J.A., Weller J.L., Schwartz C., Jaffe H., Namboodiri M.A., Coon S.L., Hickman A.B., Rollag M., Obsil T., Beauverger P., Ferry G., Boutin J.A., Klein D.C.

The daily rhythm in melatonin levels is controlled by cAMP through actions on the penultimate enzyme in melatonin synthesis, arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AANAT; serotonin N-acetyltransferase, EC ). Results presented here describe a regulatory/binding sequence in AANAT that encodes a cAMP-operated binding switch through which cAMP-regulated protein kinase-catalyzed phosphorylation [RRHTLPAN --> RRHpTLPAN] promotes formation of a complex with 14-3-3 proteins. Formation of this AANAT/14-3-3 complex enhances melatonin production by shielding AANAT from dephosphorylation and/or proteolysis and by decreasing the K(m) for 5-hydroxytryptamine (serotonin). Similar switches could play a role in cAMP signal transduction in other biological systems.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 98:8083-8088(2001) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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