A major cause of aging is thought to result from the cumulative effects of cell loss over time. In yeast, caloric restriction (CR) delays aging by activating the Sir2 deacetylase. Here we show that expression of mammalian Sir2 (SIRT1) is induced in CR rats as well as in human cells that are treated with serum from these animals. Insulin and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) attenuated this response. SIRT1 deacetylates the DNA repair factor Ku70, causing it to sequester the proapoptotic factor Bax away from mitochondria, thereby inhibiting stress-induced apoptotic cell death. Thus, CR could extend life-span by inducing SIRT1 expression and promoting the long-term survival of irreplaceable cells.
OVID-19 is caused by the recently emerged severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). While the majority of COVID-19 infections are relatively mild, with recovery typically within 2-3 weeks 1,2 , a significant number of patients develop severe illness, which is postulated to be related to both an overactive immune response and viral-induced pathology 3,4. The role of T cell immune responses in disease pathogenesis and longer-term protective immunity is currently poorly defined, but essential to understand in order to inform therapeutic interventions and vaccine design. Currently, there are many ongoing vaccine trials, but it is unknown whether they will provide long-lasting protective immunity. Most vaccines are designed to induce antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, but it is not yet known if this will be sufficient to induce full protective immunity to SARS-CoV-2 (refs. 5-8). Studying natural immunity to the virus, including the role of SARS-CoV-2specific T cells, is critical to fill the current knowledge gaps for improved vaccine design. For many primary virus infections, it typically takes 7-10 d to prime and expand adaptive T cell immune responses in order to control the virus 9. This coincides with the typical time it takes for patients with COVID-19 to either recover or develop severe illness. There is an incubation time of 4-7 d before symptom onset and a further 7-10 d before individuals progress to severe disease 10 .
The endogenous metabolite itaconate has recently emerged as a regulator of macrophage function, but its precise mechanism of action remains poorly understood. Here we show that itaconate is required for the activation of the anti-inflammatory transcription factor Nrf2 (also known as NFE2L2) by lipopolysaccharide in mouse and human macrophages. We find that itaconate directly modifies proteins via alkylation of cysteine residues. Itaconate alkylates cysteine residues 151, 257, 288, 273 and 297 on the protein KEAP1, enabling Nrf2 to increase the expression of downstream genes with anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory capacities. The activation of Nrf2 is required for the anti-inflammatory action of itaconate. We describe the use of a new cell-permeable itaconate derivative, 4-octyl itaconate, which is protective against lipopolysaccharide-induced lethality in vivo and decreases cytokine production. We show that type I interferons boost the expression of Irg1 (also known as Acod1) and itaconate production. Furthermore, we find that itaconate production limits the type I interferon response, indicating a negative feedback loop that involves interferons and itaconate. Our findings demonstrate that itaconate is a crucial anti-inflammatory metabolite that acts via Nrf2 to limit inflammation and modulate type I interferons.
SummaryChromatin modifying activities inherent to polycomb repressive complexes PRC1 and PRC2 play an essential role in gene regulation, cellular differentiation, and development. However, the mechanisms by which these complexes recognize their target sites and function together to form repressive chromatin domains remain poorly understood. Recruitment of PRC1 to target sites has been proposed to occur through a hierarchical process, dependent on prior nucleation of PRC2 and placement of H3K27me3. Here, using a de novo targeting assay in mouse embryonic stem cells we unexpectedly discover that PRC1-dependent H2AK119ub1 leads to recruitment of PRC2 and H3K27me3 to effectively initiate a polycomb domain. This activity is restricted to variant PRC1 complexes, and genetic ablation experiments reveal that targeting of the variant PCGF1/PRC1 complex by KDM2B to CpG islands is required for normal polycomb domain formation and mouse development. These observations provide a surprising PRC1-dependent logic for PRC2 occupancy at target sites in vivo.
The ubiquitin (Ub)-proteasome system includes a large family of deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs). Many members are assigned to this enzyme class by sequence similarity but without evidence for biological activity. A panel of novel DUB-specific probes was generated by a chemical ligation method. These probes allowed identification of DUBs and associated components by tandem mass spectrometry, as well as rapid demonstration of enzymatic activity for gene products whose functions were inferred from primary structure. We identified 23 active DUBs in EL4 cells, including the tumor suppressor CYLD1. At least two DUBs tightly interact with the proteasome 19S regulatory complex. An OTU domain-containing protein, with no sequence homology to any known DUBs, was isolated. We show that this polypeptide reacts with the C terminus of Ub, thus demonstrating DUB-like enzymatic activity for this novel superfamily of proteases.
Apoptosis is a key tumor suppression mechanism that can be initiated by activation of the proapoptotic factor Bax. The Ku70 DNA end-joining protein has recently been shown to suppress apoptosis by sequestering Bax from mitochondria. The mechanism by which Bax is regulated remains unknown. Here, we identify eight lysines in Ku70 that are targets for acetylation in vivo. Five of these, K539, K542, K544, K533, and K556, lie in the C-terminal linker domain of Ku70 adjacent to the Bax interaction domain. We show that CBP and PCAF efficiently acetylate K542 in vitro and associate with Ku70 in vivo. Mimicking acetylation of K539 or K542 or treating cells with deacetylase inhibitors abolishes the ability of Ku70 to suppress Bax-mediated apoptosis. We demonstrate that increased acetylation of Ku70 disrupts the Ku70-Bax interaction and coincides with cytoplasmic accumulation of CBP. These results shed light on the role of acetyltransferases as tumor suppressors.
CpG islands (CGIs) are associated with most mammalian gene promoters. A subset of CGIs act as polycomb response elements (PREs) and are recognized by the polycomb silencing systems to regulate expression of genes involved in early development. How CGIs function mechanistically as nucleation sites for polycomb repressive complexes remains unknown. Here we discover that KDM2B (FBXL10) specifically recognizes non-methylated DNA in CGIs and recruits the polycomb repressive complex 1 (PRC1). This contributes to histone H2A lysine 119 ubiquitylation (H2AK119ub1) and gene repression. Unexpectedly, we also find that CGIs are occupied by low levels of PRC1 throughout the genome, suggesting that the KDM2B-PRC1 complex may sample CGI-associated genes for susceptibility to polycomb-mediated silencing. These observations demonstrate an unexpected and direct link between recognition of CGIs by KDM2B and targeting of the polycomb repressive system. This provides the basis for a new model describing the functionality of CGIs as mammalian PREs.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00205.001
Summary Bortezomib therapy has proven successful for the treatment of relapsed/refractory, relapsed and newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM); however, dose-limiting toxicities and the development of resistance limit its long-term utility. Here we show that P5091 is an inhibitor of deubiquitylating enzyme USP7, which induces apoptosis in MM cells resistant to conventional and bortezomib therapies. Biochemical and genetic studies show that blockade of HDM2 and p21 abrogates P5091-induced cytotoxicity. In animal tumor model studies, P5091 is well tolerated, inhibits tumor growth, and prolongs survival. Combining P5091 with lenalidomide, HDAC inhibitor SAHA, or dexamethasone triggers synergistic anti-MM activity. Our preclinical study therefore supports clinical evaluation of USP7 inhibitor, alone or in combination, as a potential MM therapy.
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