Screening for potential nuclear substrates for the plant cell death suppressor kinase Adi3 using peptide microarrays. Academic Article uri icon


  • The tomato AGC protein kinase Adi3 is a Ser/Thr kinase that functions as a negative regulator of programmed cell death through cell death suppression (CDS) activity in the nucleus. In this study, to understand the mechanism of Adi3 CDS, peptide microarrays containing random Ser- and Thr-peptide phosphorylation substrates were used to screen for downstream phosphorylation substrates. In the microarray phosphorylation assay, Adi3 showed promiscuous kinase activity more toward Ser-peptides compared to Thr-peptides, and a preference for aromatic and cyclic amino acids on both Ser- and Thr-peptides was seen. The 63 highest phosphorylated peptide sequences from the Ser-peptide microarray were selected as queries for a BLAST search against the tomato proteome. As a result, 294 candidate nuclear Adi3 substrates were selected and categorized based on their functions. Many of these proteins were classified as DNA/RNA polymerases or regulators involved in transcription and translation events. The list of potential Adi3 substrates was narrowed to eleven and four candidates were tested for phosphorylation by Adi3. Two of these candidates, RNA polymerase II 2nd largest subunit (RPB2) and the pathogen defense related transcription factor Pti5, were confirmed as Adi3 phosphorylation substrates by in vitro kinase assays. Using a mutational approach two residues, Thr675 and Thr676, were identified as Adi3 phosphorylation sites on RPB2. This study provides the foundation for understanding Adi3 CDS mechanisms in the nucleus as well as other cellular functions.

published proceedings

  • PLoS One

author list (cited authors)

  • Yeo, I., & Devarenne, T. P.

citation count

  • 1

complete list of authors

  • Yeo, In-Cheol||Devarenne, Timothy P

editor list (cited editors)

  • Salvi, M.

publication date

  • January 2020