Dopamine activates ERKs in alveolar epithelial cells via Ras-PKC-dependent and Grb2/Sos-independent mechanisms

Carmen Guerrero, Liuska Pesce, Emilia Lecuona, Karen M. Ridge, Jacob I. Sznajder*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Recently it has been described that dopamine (DA), via dopaminergic type 2 receptors (D2R), activates the mitogen-activated protein kinase extracellular signal-regulated kinase (MAPK/ERK) proteins in alveolar epithelial cells (AEC), which results in the upregulation of Na+-K+-ATPase. In the present report, we used AEC to investigate the signaling pathway that links DA with ERK activation. Incubation of AEC with DA resulted in rapid and transient stimulation of ERK activity, which was mediated by Ras proteins and the serine/threonine kinase Raf-1. Pretreatment of AEC with Src homology 3 binding peptide, which blocks the interaction between Grb2 and Sos, did not prevent DA activation of ERK. Diacylglycerol (DAG)-dependent protein kinase C (PKC) iso-enzymes, involved in the DA-mediated activation of ERK proteins as pretreatment with either bisindolylmaleimide or Ro-31-8220, prevented the phosphorylation of Elk-1, and quinpirole, a D2R activator, stimulates the translocation of PKCε. Together, the data suggest that DA activated MAPK/ERK via Ras, Raf-1 kinase, and DAG-dependent PKC isoenzymes, but, importantly and contrary to the classical model, this pathway did not involve the Grb2-Sos complex formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L1099-L1107
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number5 26-5
StatePublished - 2002


  • Alveolar epithelial cell
  • Mitogen-activated protein kinase/extracellular signal-regulated kinase
  • Protein kinase C

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology


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