Eriodictyol inhibits RSK2-ATF1 signaling and suppresses EGF-induced neoplastic cell transformation.
J Biol Chem. 2011 Jan 21 ;286(3):2057-66. Epub 2010 Nov 22. PMID: 21098035
RSK2 is a widely expressed serine/threonine kinase, and its activation enhances cell proliferation. Here, we report that ATF1 is a novel substrate of RSK2 and that RSK2-ATF1 signaling plays an important role in EGF-induced neoplastic cell transformation. RSK2 phosphorylated ATF1 at Ser-63 and enhanced ATF1 transcriptional activity. Docking experiments using the crystal structure of the RSK2 N-terminal kinase domain combined with in vitro pulldown assays demonstrated that eriodictyol, a flavanone found in fruits, bound with the N-terminal kinase domain of RSK2 to inhibit RSK2 N-terminal kinase activity. In cells, eriodictyol inhibited phosphorylation of ATF1 but had no effect on the phosphorylation of RSK, MEK1/2, ERK1/2, p38 or JNKs, indicating that eriodictyol specifically suppresses RSK2 signaling. Furthermore, eriodictyol inhibited RSK2-mediated ATF1 transactivation and tumor promoter-induced transformation of JB6 Cl41 cells. Eriodictyol or knockdown of RSK2 or ATF1 also suppressed Ras-mediated focus formation. Overall, these results indicate that RSK2-ATF1 signaling plays an important role in neoplastic cell transformation and that eriodictyol is a novel natural compound for suppressing RSK2 kinase activity.