Regulator of G-protein signaling 3 (RGS3) enhances the intrinsic rate at which Galpha(i) and Galpha(q) hydrolyze GTP to GDP, thereby limiting the duration in which GTP-Galpha(i) and GTP-Galpha(q) can activate effectors. Since GDP-Galpha subunits rapidly combine with free Gbetagamma subunits to reform inactive heterotrimeric G-proteins, RGS3 and other RGS proteins may also reduce the amount of Gbetagamma subunits available for effector interactions. Although RGS6, RGS7, and RGS11 bind Gbeta(5) in the absence of a Ggamma subunit, RGS proteins are not known to directly influence Gbetagamma signaling. Here we show that RGS3 binds Gbeta(1)gamma(2) subunits and limits their ability to trigger the production of inositol phosphates and the activation of Akt and mitogen-activated protein kinase. Co-expression of RGS3 with Gbeta(1)gamma(2) inhibits Gbeta(1)gamma(2)-induced inositol phosphate production and Akt activation in COS-7 cells and mitogen-activated protein kinase activation in HEK 293 cells. The inhibition of Gbeta(1)gamma(2) signaling does not require an intact RGS domain but depends upon two regions in RGS3 located between acids 313 and 390 and between 391 and 458. Several other RGS proteins do not affect Gbeta(1)gamma(2) signaling in these assays. Consistent with the in vivo results, RGS3 inhibits Gbetagamma-mediated activation of phospholipase Cbeta in vitro. Thus, RGS3 may limit Gbetagamma signaling not only by virtue of its GTPase-activating protein activity for Galpha subunits, but also by directly interfering with the activation of effectors.
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