MK2

Mitogen-activated protein kinase-activated protein kinase 2 (MAPKAPK2, or MK2) is a kinase belonging to the MAPKAPK family, a group of kinases activated by MAPK signaling. MK2 is activated by p38α and regulates the production of inflammatory cytokines, such as TNF-α.

Products
Background
Literature
Gene Data

Inhibitors

Cat No Product Name / Activity
4279 PF 3644022
Potent MK2 inhibitor
3140 PHA 767491 hydrochloride
MK2 inhibitor; also inhibits cdc7/cdk9

Other

Cat No Product Name / Activity
2186 CMPD-1
Selective inhibitor of p38α-mediated MK2a phosphorylation; also tubulin polymerization inhibitor

Mitogen-activated protein kinase-activated protein kinase 2 (MK2; MAPKAPK2), EC 2.7.11.1, is a member of the MAPKAPK family of kinases, which also consists of MK3 and MK5 (PRAK). The MAPKAPK family are activated by MAPK signaling, with MK2 being a downstream substrate of p38.

MK2 is ubiquitously expressed, with its highest expression in the heart, kidney and skeletal muscle. In quiescent cells MK2 is predominantly localized to the nucleus. In response to stress stimuli (such as UV irradiation, heat shock and oxidative stress), as well as LPS and Toll-like receptor signaling, p38 is activated and subsequently phosphorylates MK2, which is exported from the nucleus into the cells cytoplasm. Substrates for MK2 include AU-rich element-binding (ARE) proteins; the chaperone Hsp27; the cell cycle phosphatase cdc25; the transcription factor AATF; and LIMK. MK2 has a role in a number of physiological processes including, inflammation, actin remodeling, cell cycle arrest and apoptosis.

Activation of ARE proteins by MK2 results in the stabilization and translation of mRNA, including that of TNF-α, IL-6 and IL-8, therefore increasing proinflammatory cytokine production and secretion. MK2 has been shown to be essential for LPS-induced TNF-α production, so may be of therapeutic interest for the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis. MK2 may also have a role in the neuroinflammation exhibited in neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. For example MK2-deficient mice have been shown to exhibit attenuated neuroinflammation in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

MK2 is also a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of cancer. It is activated by DNA damage, before phosphorylating cdc25, causing cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase. This gives the cell time to repair the damage to its DNA. MK2 depletion has been shown to enhance the effectiveness of chemotherapeutics against cancer cells in vitro. MK2 also phosphorylates the transcription factor AATF, which suppresses the expression of p53 pro-apoptotic target genes. Furthermore the phosphorylation of Hsp27 by MK2, inhibits its chaperone activity, resulting in actin polymerization and enhanced cell motility.

External sources of pharmacological information for MK2 :

    Literature for MK2

    Cancer

    Cancer Research Product Guide

    A collection of over 750 products for cancer research, the guide includes research tools for the study of:

    • Cancer Metabolism
    • Epigenetics in Cancer
    • Receptor Signaling
    • Cell Cycle and DNA Damage Repair
    • Angiogenesis
    • Invasion and Metastasis
    Immunology

    Immunology Product Listing

    A collection of over 190 products for immunology research, the guide includes research tools for the study of:

    • Chemokine and Cytokine Signaling
    • Chemotaxis
    • Complement System
    • Immune Cell Signaling
    • Inflammation
    Kinases

    Kinases Product Listing

    A collection of over 400 products for kinase research, the listing includes inhibitors of:

    • Receptor Tyrosine Kinases
    • Protein Kinases A, C, D and G
    • PI-3 Kinase, Akt and mTOR
    • MAPK Signaling
    • Receptor Serine/Threonine Kinases
    Cell Cycle & DNA Damage Repair

    Cell Cycle & DNA Damage Repair Poster

    In normal cells, each stage of the cell cycle is tightly regulated, however in cancer cells many genes and proteins that are involved in the regulation of the cell cycle are mutated or over expressed. Adapted from the 2015 Cancer Product Guide, Edition 3, this poster summarizes the stages of the cell cycle and DNA repair. It also highlights strategies for enhancing replicative stress in cancer cells to force mitotic catastrophe and cell death.

    MK2 Gene Data

    Gene Species Gene Symbol Gene Accession No. Protein Accession No.
    MAPKAPK2 Human MAPKAPK2 NM_004759 P49137
    Mouse Mapkapk2 NM_008551 P49138
    Rat Mapkapk2 NM_178102 NP_835203