Lung cancer with oncogenic KRAS makes up a significant proportion of lung cancers and is accompanied by a poor prognosis. Recent advances in understanding the molecular pathogenesis of lung cancer with oncogenic KRAS have enabled the development of drugs, yet mutated KRAS remains undruggable. We performed small-molecule library screening and identified verteporfin, a yes-associated protein 1 (YAP1) inhibitor; verteporfin treatment markedly reduced cell viability in KRAS-mutant lung cancer cells in vitro and suppressed KRAS-driven lung tumorigenesis in vivo. Comparative functional analysis of verteporfin treatment and YAP1 knockdown with siRNA revealed that the cytotoxic effect of verteporfin was at least partially independent of YAP1 inhibition. A whole-transcriptome approach revealed the distinct expression profiles in KRAS-mutant lung cancer cells between verteporfin treatment and YAP1 knockdown and identified the selective involvement of the ER stress pathway in the effects of verteporfin treatment in KRAS-mutant lung cancer, leading to apoptotic cell death. These data provide novel insight to uncover vulnerabilities in KRAS-driven lung tumorigenesis.
Iwao Shimomura, Naoaki Watanabe, Tomofumi Yamamoto, Minami Kumazaki, Yuji Tada, Koichiro Tatsumi, Takahiro Ochiya, Yusuke Yamamoto
Most colorectal cancers (CRCs) are moderately-differentiated or well-differentiated, a status that is preserved even in metastatic tumors. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying CRC differentiation remain to be elucidated. Herein, we unravel a novel post-transcriptional regulatory mechanism via a previously unappreciated LIN28B-CDX2 signaling axis that plays a critical role in mediating CRC differentiation. Owing to a large number of mRNA targets, the mRNA-binding protein LIN28B has diverse functions in development, metabolism, tissue regeneration and tumorigenesis. Our RNA-binding protein immunoprecipitation (RIP) assay revealed LIN28B directly binds CDX2 mRNA, which is a pivotal homeobox transcription factor in normal intestinal epithelial cell identity and differentiation. Furthermore, LIN28B overexpression results in enhanced CDX2 expression to promote both differentiation in subcutaneous xenograft tumors generated from CRC cells and metastatic tumor colonization through mesenchymal-epithelial transition in CRC liver metastasis mouse models. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) sequence for CDX2 identified Alpha-Methylacyl-CoA racemase (AMACR) as a novel transcriptional target of CDX2 in the context of LIN28B overexpression. We also found AMACR enhances intestinal alkaline phosphatase (ALPi) activity, which is known as a key component of intestinal differentiation, through the upregulation of butyric acid. Overall, we demonstrate that LIN28B promotes CRC differentiation through CDX2-AMACR axis.
Kensuke Suzuki, Yasunori Masuike, Rei Mizuno, Uma M Sachdeva, Priya Chatterji, Sarah F. Andres, Wenping Sun, Andres J Klein-Szanto, Sepideh Besharati, Helen E Remotti, Michael P Verzi, Anil K. Rustgi
Mutations in LAMB2, encoding laminin β2, cause Pierson syndrome and occasionally milder nephropathy without extrarenal abnormalities. The most deleterious missense mutations that have been identified affect primarily the N-terminus of laminin β2. On the other hand, those associated with isolated nephropathy are distributed across the entire molecule, and variants in the β2 LEa-LF-LEb domains are exclusively found in cases with isolated nephropathy. Here we report the clinical features of mild isolated nephropathy associated with 3 LAMB2 variants in the LEa-LF-LEb domains (p.R469Q, p.G699R, and p.R1078C) and their biochemical characterization. Although Pierson syndrome missense mutations often inhibit laminin β2 secretion, the 3 recombinant variants were secreted as efficiently as WT. However, the β2 variants lost pH dependency for heparin binding, resulting in aberrant binding under physiologic conditions. This suggests that the binding of laminin β2 to negatively charged molecules is involved in glomerular basement membrane (GBM) permselectivity. Moreover, the excessive binding of the β2 variants to other laminins appears to lead to their increased deposition in the GBM. Laminin β2 also serves as a potentially novel cell-adhesive ligand for integrin α4β1. Our findings define biochemical functions of laminin β2 variants influencing glomerular filtration that may underlie the pathogenesis of isolated nephropathy caused by LAMB2 abnormalities.
Yamato Kikkawa, Taeko Hashimoto, Keiichi Takizawa, Seiya Urae, Haruka Masuda, Masumi Matsunuma, Yuji Yamada, Keisuke Hamada, Motoyoshi Nomizu, Helen Liapis, Masataka Hisano, Yuko Akioka, Kenichiro Miura, Motoshi Hattori, Jeffrey H. Miner, Yutaka Harita
The drive to withstand environmental stresses and defend against invasion is a universal trait extant in all forms of life. While numerous canonical signaling cascades have been characterized in detail, it remains unclear how these pathways interface to generate coordinated responses to diverse stimuli. To dissect these connections, we follow heparanase (HPSE), a protein best known for its endoglycosidic activity at the extracellular matrix but recently recognized to drive various forms of late stage disease through unknown mechanisms. Using herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1) infection as a model cellular perturbation, we demonstrate that HPSE acts beyond its established enzymatic role to restrict multiple forms of cell-intrinsic defense and facilitate host cell reprogramming by the invading pathogen. We reveal that cells devoid of HPSE are innately resistant to infection and counteract viral takeover through multiple amplified defense mechanisms. With a unique grasp of the fundamental processes of transcriptional regulation and cell death, HPSE represents a potent cellular intersection with broad therapeutic potential.
Alex Agelidis, Benjamin A. Turturice, Rahul K. Suryawanshi, Tejabhiram Yadavalli, Dinesh Jaishankar, Joshua Ames, James Hopkins, Lulia Koujah, Chandrashekhar D. Patil, Satvik R. Hadigal, Evan J. Kyzar, Anaamika Campeau, Jacob M. Wozniak, David J. Gonzalez, Israel Vlodavsky, Jin-ping Li, David L. Perkins, Patricia W. Finn, Deepak Shukla
Myofibroblasts are the major cellular source of collagen, and their accumulation – via differentiation from fibroblasts and resistance to apoptosis – is a hallmark of tissue fibrosis. Clearance of myofibroblasts by de-differentiation and restoration of apoptosis sensitivity has the potential to reverse fibrosis. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and mitogens such as FGF2 have each been shown to de-differentiate myofibroblasts, but the resultant cellular phenotypes have neither been comprehensively characterized nor compared. Here we show that PGE2 elicited de-differentiation of human lung myofibroblasts via cAMP/PKA while FGF2 utilized MEK/ERK. The two mediators yielded transitional cells with distinct transcriptomes, with FGF2 promoting but PGE2 inhibiting proliferation and survival. The gene expression pattern in fibroblasts isolated from the lungs of mice undergoing resolution of experimental fibrosis resembled that of myofibroblasts treated with PGE2 in vitro. We conclude that myofibroblast de-differentiation can proceed via distinct programs exemplified by treatment with PGE2 and FGF2, with that occurring in vivo most closely resembling the former.
Sean M. Fortier, Loka R. Penke, Dana M. King, Tho X. Pham, Giovanni Ligresti, Marc Peters-Golden
Elevation of intraocular pressure (IOP) due to trabecular meshwork (TM) damage is associated with Primary Open Angle Glaucoma (POAG). Myocilin mutations resulting in elevated IOP are the most common genetic cause of POAG. We have previously shown that mutant myocilin accumulates in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and induces chronic ER stress, leading to TM damage and IOP elevation. However, it is not understood how chronic ER stress leads to TM dysfunction and loss. Here, we report that mutant myocilin activates autophagy but it is functionally impairecd in cultured human trabecular meshwork (TM) cells and in a mouse model of myocilin-associated POAG (Tg-MYOCY437H). Genetic and pharmacological inhibition of autophagy worsens mutant myocilin accumulation and exacerbates IOP elevation in Tg-MYOCY437H mice. Remarkably, impaired autophagy is associated with chronic ER stress-induced transcriptional factor, CHOP. Deletion of CHOP corrects impaired autophagy, enhances recognition and degradation of mutant myocilin by autophagy,and reduces glaucoma in Tg-MYOCY437H mice. Stimulating autophagic flux via Tat-beclin 1 peptide or torin 2, promotes autophagic degradation of mutant myocilin and reduces elevated IOP in Tg-MYOCY437H mice. Together, our studies provide a novel treatment strategy for myocilin-associated POAG by correcting impaired autophagy in the TM.
Ramesh B. Kasetti, Prabhavathi Maddineni, Charles C. Kiehlbauch, Shruti Patil, Charles C. Searby, Beth Levine, Val C. Sheffield, Gulab S. Zode
Limitations in cell proliferation are important for normal function of differentiated tissues, and essential for the safty of cell replacement products made from pluripotent stem cells, which have unlimited proliferative potential. To evaluate whether these limitations can be established pharmacologically, we exposed pancreatic progenitors differentiating from human pluripotent stem cells to small molecules that interfere with cell cycle progression either by inducing G1 arrest, impairing S-phase entry, or S-phase completion and determined growth potential, differentiation and function of insulin-producing endocrine cells. We found that the combination of G1 arrest with a compromised ability to complete DNA replication promoted the differentiation of pancreatic progenitor cells towards insulin-producing cells and could substitute for endocrine differentiation factors. Reduced replication fork speed during differentiation improved the stability of insulin expression, and the resulting cells protected mice from diabetes without the formation of cystic growths. The proliferative potential of grafts was proportional to the reduction of replication fork speed during pancreatic differentiation. Therefore, a compromised ability to enter and complete S-phase is a functionally important property of pancreatic endocrine differentiation, can be achieved by reducing replication fork speed, and is an important determinant of cell-intrinsic limitations of growth.
Lina Sui, Yurong Xin, Qian Du, Daniela Georgieva, Giacomo Diedenhofen, Leena Haataja, Qi Su, Michael V. Zuccaro, Jinrang Kim, Jiayu Fu, Yuan Xing, Yi He, Danielle Baum, Robin S. Goland, Yong Wang, Jose Oberholzer, Fabrizio Barbetti, Peter Arvan, Sandra Kleiner, Dieter Egli
An intact lung epithelial barrier is essential for lung homeostasis. The Na+, K+-ATPase (NKA), primarily serving as an ion transporter, also regulates epithelial barrier function via modulation of tight junctions. However, the underlying mechanism is not well-understood. Here, we showed that overexpression of the NKA β1 subunit upregulates the expression of tight junction proteins, leading to increased alveolar epithelial barrier function by an ion transport-independent mechanism. Using immunoprecipitation and mass spectrometry, we identified a number of unknown protein interactions of the β1 subunit, including a top candidate, myotonic dystrophy kinase-related cdc42-binding kinase α (MRCKα), a protein kinase known to regulate peripheral actin formation. Using a doxycycline-inducible gene expression system, we demonstrated that MRCKα and its downstream activation of myosin light chain is required for the regulation of alveolar barrier function by the NKA β1 subunit. Importantly, MRCKα is expressed in both human airways and alveoli and has reduced expression in patients with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), a lung illness that can be caused by multiple direct and indirect insults, including the infection of influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2. Our results have elucidated a novel mechanism by which NKA regulates epithelial tight junctions and identified potential drug targets for treating ARDS and other pulmonary diseases that are caused by barrier dysfunction.
Haiqing Bai, Rui Zhou, Michael Barravecchia, Rosemary Norman, Alan E. Friedman, Deborah Yu, Xin Lin, Jennifer L. Young, David A. Dean
Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) is caused by a CTG-repeat expansion in the DMPK gene. Expression of pathogenic expanded CUG-repeat (CUGexp) RNA causes multisystemic disease by perturbing the functions of RNA binding proteins, resulting in expression of fetal protein isoforms in adult tissues. Cardiac involvement affects 50% of individuals with DM1 and causes 25% of disease-related deaths. We developed a transgenic mouse model for tetracycline-inducible and heart-specific expression of human DMPK mRNA containing 960 CUG repeats. CUGexp RNA is expressed in atria and ventricles and induced mice exhibit electrophysiological and molecular features of DM1 disease including cardiac conduction delays, supraventricular arrhythmias, nuclear RNA foci with Muscleblind protein colocalization and alternative splicing defects. Importantly, these phenotypes were rescued upon loss of CUGexp RNA expression. Transcriptome analysis revealed gene expression and alternative splicing changes in ion transport genes that are associated with inherited cardiac conduction diseases, including a subset of genes involved in calcium handling. Consistent with RNA-seq results, calcium handling defects were identified in atrial cardiomyocytes isolated from mice expressing CUGexp RNA. These results identify potential tissue-specific mechanisms contributing to cardiac pathogenesis in DM1 and demonstrate the utility of reversible phenotypes in our model to facilitate development of targeted therapeutic approaches.
Ashish N. Rao, Hannah M. Campbell, Xiangnan Guan, Tarah A. Word, Xander H.T. Wehrens, Zheng Xia, Thomas A. Cooper
Triple negative breast cancers (TNBC) lack effective targeted therapies and cytotoxic chemotherapies remain the standard of care for this subtype. Owing to their increased genomic instability, PARP inhibitors (PARPi) are being tested against TNBCs. In particular, clinical trials are now interrogating the efficacy of PARPi combined with chemotherapies. Intriguingly, while response rates are low, cohorts of patients do respond. Moreover, recent studies suggest that an increase in levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) may sensitize cells to PARPi. This represents a therapeutic opportunity, as several chemotherapies, including doxorubicin, function in part by producing ROS. We previously demonstrated that the p66ShcA adaptor protein is variably expressed in TNBCs. We now show that in response to therapy-induced stress, p66ShcA stimulates ROS production, which, in turn, potentiates synergy between doxorubicin/PARPi combination therapy in TNBCs. This p66ShcA-induced sensitivity relies on the accumulation of oxidative damage in TNBCs, rather than genomic instability, to potentiate cell death. These findings suggest that increasing the expression of p66ShcA protein levels in TNBCs represents a rational approach to bolster the synergy between PARPi and doxorubicin.
Eduardo Cepeda Cañedo, Stephanie Totten, Ryuhjin Ahn, Paul Savage, Deanna MacNeil, Jesse Hudson, Chantal Autexier, Genevieve Deblois, Morag Park, Michael Witcher, Josie Ursini-Siegel
No posts were found with this tag.