To identify C-MYC targets rate-limiting for proliferation of malignant melanoma, we stably inhibited C-MYC in several human metastatic melanoma lines via lentivirus-based shRNAs approximately to the levels detected in normal melanocytes. C-MYC depletion did not significantly affect levels of E2F1 protein reported to regulate expression of many S-phase specific genes, but resulted in the repression of several genes encoding enzymes rate-limiting for dNTP metabolism. These included thymidylate synthase (TS), inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase 2 (IMPDH2) and phosphoribosyl pyrophosphate synthetase 2 (PRPS2). C-MYC depletion also resulted in reduction in the amounts of deoxyribonucleoside triphosphates (dNTPs) and inhibition of proliferation. shRNA-mediated suppression of TS, IMPDH2 or PRPS2 resulted in the decrease of dNTP pools and retardation of the cell cycle progression of melanoma cells in a manner similar to that of C-MYC-depletion in those cells. Reciprocally, concurrent overexpression of cDNAs for TS, IMPDH2 and PRPS2 delayed proliferative arrest caused by inhibition of C-MYC in melanoma cells. Overexpression of C-MYC in normal melanocytes enhanced expression of the above enzymes and increased individual dNTP pools. Analysis of in vivo C-MYC interactions with TS, IMPDH2 and PRPS2 genes confirmed that they are direct C-MYC targets. Moreover, all three proteins express at higher levels in cells from several metastatic melanoma lines compared to normal melanocytes. Our data establish a novel functional link between C-MYC and dNTP metabolism and identify its role in proliferation of tumor cells.
Summary Reactive oxygen species (ROS) activate NF-E2-related transcription factor 2 (Nrf2), a key transcriptional regulator driving antioxidant gene expression and protection from oxidant injury. Here we report that in response to elevation of intracellular ROS above a critical threshold, Nrf2 stimulates expression of transcription Kruppel-like factor 9 (Klf9), resulting in further Klf9-dependent increases in ROS and subsequent cell death. We demonstrated that Klf9 independently causes increased ROS levels in various types of cultured cells and in mouse tissues and is required for pathogenesis of bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis in mice. Mechanistically, Klf9 binds to the promoters and alters the expression of several genes involved in the metabolism of ROS, including suppression of thioredoxin reductase 2, an enzyme participating in ROS clearance. Our data reveal an Nrf2-dependent feed-forward regulation of ROS and identify Klf9 as a novel ubiquitous regulator of oxidative stress and lung injury.
In normal human cells, oncogene-induced senescence (OIS) depends on induction of DNA damage response. Oxidative stress and hyperreplication of genomic DNA have been proposed as major causes of DNA damage in OIS cells. Here, we report that down-regulation of deoxyribonucleoside pools is another endogenous source of DNA damage in normal human fibroblasts (NHFs) undergoing HRAS(G12V)-induced senescence. NHF-HRAS(G12V) cells underexpressed thymidylate synthase (TS) and ribonucleotide reductase (RR), two enzymes required for the entire de novo deoxyribonucleotide biosynthesis, and possessed low dNTP levels. Chromatin at the promoters of the genes encoding TS and RR was enriched with retinoblastoma tumor suppressor protein and histone H3 tri-methylated at lysine 9. Importantly, ectopic coexpression of TS and RR or addition of deoxyribonucleosides substantially suppressed DNA damage, senescence-associated phenotypes, and proliferation arrest in two types of NHF-expressing HRAS(G12V). Reciprocally, short hairpin RNA-mediated suppression of TS and RR caused DNA damage and senescence in NHFs, although less efficiently than HRAS(G12V). However, overexpression of TS and RR in quiescent NHFs did not overcome proliferation arrest, suggesting that unlike quiescence, OIS requires depletion of dNTP pools and activated DNA replication. Our data identify a previously unknown role of deoxyribonucleotides in regulation of OIS.
SUMMARY Melanoma is one of the most aggressive types of human cancers, and the mechanisms underlying melanoma invasive phenotype are not completely understood. Here, we report that expression of guanosine monophosphate reductase (GMPR), an enzyme involved in de novo biosynthesis of purine nucleotides, was down-regulated in invasive stages of human melanoma. Loss- and gain-of-function experiments revealed that GMPR down-regulates the amounts of several GTP-bound (active) RHO-GTPases, suppresses the ability of melanoma cells to form invadopodia, degrade extracellular matrix and invade in vitro and grow as tumor xenografts in vivo. Mechanistically, we demonstrated that GMPR partially depletes intracellular GTP pools. Pharmacological inhibition of de novo GTP biosynthesis suppressed, whereas addition of exogenous guanosine increased invasion of melanoma cells as well as cells from other cancer types. Our data identified GMPR as a melanoma invasion suppressor, and established a link between guanosine metabolism and RHO-GTPase-dependent melanoma cell invasion.
Bortezomib, a therapeutic agent for multiple myeloma (MM) and mantle cell lymphoma, suppresses proteosomal degradation leading to substantial changes in cellular transcriptional programs and ultimately resulting in apoptosis. Transcriptional regulators required for bortezomibinduced apoptosis in MM cells are largely unknown. Using gene expression profiling, we identified 36 transcription factors that displayed altered expression in MM cells treated with bortezomib. Analysis of a publically available database identified Kruppel-like family factor 9 (KLF9) as the only transcription factor with significantly higher basal expression in MM cells from patients who responded to bortezomib compared with nonresponders. We demonstrated that KLF9 in cultured MM cells was up-regulated by bortezomib; however, it was not through the induction of endoplasmic reticulum stress. Instead, KLF9 levels correlated with bortezomib-dependent inhibition of histone deacetylases (HDAC) and were increased by the HDAC inhibitor LBH589 (panobinostat). Furthermore, bortezomib induced binding of endogenous KLF9 to the promoter of the proapoptotic gene NOXA. Importantly, KLF9 knockdown impaired NOXA up-regulation and apoptosis caused by bortezomib, LBH589, or a combination of theses drugs, whereas KLF9 overexpression induced apoptosis that was partially NOXA-dependent. Our data identify KLF9 as a novel and potentially clinically relevant transcriptional regulator of drug-induced apoptosis in MM cells. (Blood. 2012;119(6):1450-1458) IntroductionMultiple myeloma (MM) is a plasma cell disorder that accounts for approximately 10% of all hematologic malignancies. 1,2 Although the introduction of novel agents in the past decade has increased median overall survival of myeloma patients from 30 months to 45-72 months, the disease still remains incurable.  One of these agents, bortezomib (Velcade, PS-341), significantly increased overall survival in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma when used as a single agent in comparison to high-dose dexamethasone, one of the standard therapies for this disease.  Bortezomib acts via inhibition of proteasome-mediated protein degradation, ultimately causing death in cells from many types of malignancies, including MM cells.  Bortezomib apoptosisinducing activity has been attributed in part to the alterations in the expression of several BCL2 family proteins, 6 among which the BH3-only protein NOXA appears to play an important role.  NOXA triggers apoptosis by binding to the prosurvival molecule MCL1, thus preventing it from sequestering proteins BAX, BAK and BIM, which are all critical inducers of apoptosis.  It has been reported that bortezomib increases NOXA protein levels by suppressing its proteosomal degradation 8 and by transcriptional activation of its gene. 8,13 Recently, several transcription factors including C-MYC, 13,14 ATF3, 15 ATF4, 15,16 and p53 14 have been shown to functionally participate in bortezomib-induced death in cells ...
It is generally accepted that intracellular oxidative stress induced by proteasome inhibitors is a byproduct of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. Here, we report a mechanism underlying the ability of proteasome inhibitors bortezomib (BTZ) and carfilzomib (CFZ) to directly induce oxidative and ER stresses in multiple myeloma (MM) cells via transcriptional repression of a gene encoding mitochondrial thioredoxin reductase (TXNRD2). TXNRD2 is critical for maintenance of intracellular red-ox status and detoxification of reactive oxygen species. Depletion of TXNRD2 to the levels detected in BTZ- or CFZ-treated cells causes oxidative stress, ER stress and death similar to those induced by proteasome inhibitors. Reciprocally, restoration of near-wildtype TXNRD2 amounts in MM cells treated with proteasome inhibitors reduces oxidative stress, ER stress and cell death by ~46%, ~35% and ~50%, respectively, compared to cells with unrestored TXNRD2 levels. Moreover, cells from three MM cell lines selected for resistance to BTZ demonstrate elevated levels of TXNRD2, indirectly confirming its functional role in BTZ resistance. Accordingly, ectopic expression of TXNRD2 in MM cell xenografts in immunocompromised mice blunts therapeutic effects of BTZ. Our data identify TXNRD2 as a potentially clinically relevant target, inhibition of which is critical for proteasome inhibitor-dependent cytotoxicity, oxidative stress, and ER stress.
The down-regulation of dominant oncogenes, including C-MYC, in tumor cells often leads to the induction of senescence via mechanisms that are not completely identified. In the current study, we demonstrate that MYC-depleted melanoma cells undergo extensive DNA damage that is caused by the underexpression of thymidylate synthase (TS) and ribonucleotide reductase (RR) and subsequent depletion of deoxyribonucleoside triphosphate pools. Simultaneous genetic inhibition of TS and RR in melanoma cells induced DNA damage and senescence phenotypes very similar to the ones caused by MYC-depletion. Reciprocally, overexpression of TS and RR in melanoma cells or addition of deoxyribo-nucleosides to culture media substantially inhibited DNA damage and senescence-associated phenotypes caused by C-MYC depletion. Our data demonstrate the essential role of TS and RR in C-MYC-dependent suppression of senescence in melanoma cells.
Oncoprotein C-MYC is overexpressed in human metastatic melanomas and melanoma-derived cells where it is required for suppression of oncogene-induced senescence (OIS). The genetic events that maintain high levels of C-MYC in melanoma cells and their role in OIS are unknown. Here, we report that C-MYC in cells from several randomly chosen melanoma lines was up-regulated at the protein level, and largely due to the increased protein stability. Of all known regulators of C-MYC stability, levels of B56α subunit of the PP2A tumor suppressor complex were substantially suppressed in all human melanoma cells compared to normal melanocytes. Accordingly, immuno-histochemical analysis revealed that the lowest and the highest amounts of PP2A-B56α were predominantly detected in metastatic melanoma tissues and in primary melanomas from patients with good clinical outcome, respectively. Importantly, PP2A-B56α overexpression suppressed C-MYC in melanoma cells and induced OIS, whereas depletion of PP2A-B56α in normal human melanocytes up-regulated C-MYC protein levels and suppressed BRAFV600E- and, less efficiently, NRASQ61R-induced senescence. Our data reveal a mechanism of C-MYC overexpression in melanoma cells and identify a functional role for PP2A-B56α in OIS of melanocytic cells.
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