RHO GTPases Activate ROCKs

Stable Identifier
Homo sapiens
Locations in the PathwayBrowser

RHO associated, coiled-coil containing protein kinases ROCK1 and ROCK2 consist of a serine/threonine kinase domain, a coiled-coil region, a RHO-binding domain and a plekstrin homology (PH) domain interspersed with a cysteine-rich region. The PH domain inhibits the kinase activity of ROCKs by an intramolecular fold. ROCKs are activated by binding of the GTP-bound RHO GTPases RHOA, RHOB and RHOC to the RHO binding domain of ROCKs (Ishizaki et al. 1996, Leung et al. 1996), which disrupts the autoinhibitory fold. Once activated, ROCK1 and ROCK2 phosphorylate target proteins, many of which are involved in the stabilization of actin filaments and generation of actin-myosin contractile force. ROCKs phosphorylate LIM kinases LIMK1 and LIMK2, enabling LIMKs to phosphorylate cofilin, an actin depolymerizing factor, and thereby regulate the reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton (Ohashi et al. 2000, Sumi et al. 2001). ROCKs phosphorylate MRLC (myosin regulatory light chain), which stimulates the activity of non-muscle myosin II (NMM2), an actin-based motor protein involved in cell migration, polarity formation and cytokinesis (Amano et al. 1996, Riento and Ridley 2003, Watanabe et al. 2007, Amano et al. 2010). ROCKs also phosphorylate the myosin phosphatase targeting subunit (MYPT1) of MLC phosphatase, inhibiting the phosphatase activity and preventing dephosphorylation of MRLC. This pathway acts synergistically with phosphorylation of MRLC by ROCKs towards stimulation of non-muscle myosin II activity (Kimura et al. 1996, Amano et al. 2010).

Participant Of
Orthologous Events
Cross References
BioModels Database