bims-ershed Biomed News
on ER Stress in Health and Diseases
Issue of 2021‒12‒05
six papers selected by
Matías Eduardo González Quiroz
Worker’s Hospital

  1. J Exp Bot. 2021 Nov 29. pii: erab513. [Epub ahead of print]
      The investigation of a phenomenon called the unfolded protein response (UPR) started approximately 3 decades ago, and we now know that the UPR is involved in a number of cellular events among metazoans, higher plants, and algae. The relevance of the UPR in human diseases featuring protein folding defects, such as Alzheimer's and Huntington's diseases, has drawn much attention to the response in medical research to date. While metazoans and plants share similar molecular mechanisms of the UPR, recent studies shed light on the uniqueness of the plant UPR, with the plant-specific protein families appearing to play pivotal roles. Given the considerable emphasis on the original discoveries of key factors in metazoans, this mini review aims to highlight the uniqueness of the plant UPR based on recent publications.
    Keywords:  Arabidopsis; DUF538 protein family; IRE1; NAC transcription factor; bZIP60; endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress; phosphoinositide signaling; stress granule; unfolded protein response (UPR)
  2. Vascul Pharmacol. 2021 Nov 26. pii: S1537-1891(21)00120-8. [Epub ahead of print] 106948
      Selective cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitor rofecoxib was pulled off the market because of its association with increased risk of adverse cardiovascular effects. The precise underlying mechanism for the differential effects of COX-2 inhibitors on cardiovascular risk is not known. Since endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress is implicated in atherogenesis, we examined the effects of COX-2 inhibitors on ER stress in primary human coronary artery endothelial cells (HCAEC), human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC), and human pulmonary artery endothelial cells (HPAEC). ER stress was measured in HCAEC treated with either tunicamycin (TM) or high-concentrations (27.5 mM) dextrose (HD) using the secreted alkaline phosphatase (ES-TRAP) assay. Markers of unfolded protein response (UPR) such as activating transcription factor 6 (ATF6), glucose-regulated protein 78 (GRP78), inositol-requiring enzyme 1α (IRE1α), phospho-IRE1α, protein kinase R (PKR)-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK), and phospho-PERK were measured by Western blot. Treatment of HCAEC with TM and HD decreased secreted alkaline phosphatase activity indicating increased ER stress. Treatment of cells exposed to TM or HD with celecoxib, meloxicam, ibuprofen, and acetylsalicylic acid, but not rofecoxib, resulted in a dose-dependent decrease in ER stress. High-dextrose and TM increased IRE1α and PERK phosphorylation and ATF6 and GRP78 expression. Treatment with celecoxib, but not rofecoxib, inhibited these markers of UPR. Treatment with selective COX-2 inhibitors with the exception of rofecoxib suppressed ER stress as measured with both alkaline phosphatase activity assays and markers for UPR. Inability of rofecoxib to inhibit ER stress unlike the other cyclooxygenase inhibitors tested may have contributed to its unfavorable effects on cardiovascular outcomes.
    Keywords:  COX-2; Cardiovascular disease; Endoplasmic reticulum stress; Human coronary artery endothelial cell
  3. J Virol. 2021 Dec 01. JVI0110321
      Adeno-associated virus (AAV) is extensively used as a viral vector to deliver therapeutic genes during human gene therapy. A high affinity cellular receptor (AAVR) for most serotypes was recently identified, however, its biological function as a gene product remains unclear. In this study, we used AAVR knockdown cell models to show that AAVR depletion significantly attenuated cells to activate unfolded protein response (UPR) pathways, when exposed to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress inducer, tunicamycin. By analyzing three major UPR pathways, we found that ATF6 signaling was most affected in an AAVR-dependent fashion, distinct to CHOP and XBP1 branches. AAVR capacity in UPR regulation required the full native AAVR protein, and AAV2 capsid binding to the receptor altered ATF6 dynamics. Conversely, the transduction efficiency of AAV2 was associated with changes in ATF6 signaling in host cells following treatment with different small molecules. Thus, AAVR served as an inhibitory molecule to repress UPR responses via a specificity for ATF6 signaling, and the AAV2 infection route involved the release from AAVR-mediated ATF6 repression, thereby facilitating viral intracellular trafficking and transduction. Importance The native function of the AAVR as an ER-Golgi localized protein is largely unknown. We showed that AAVR acted as a functional molecule to regulate UPR signaling under induced ER stress. AAVR inhibited the activation of the transcription factor, ATF6, whereas receptor binding to AAV2 released the suppression effects. This finding has expanded our understanding of AAV infection biology in terms of the physiological properties of AAVR in host cells. Importantly, our research provides a possible strategy which may improve the efficiency of AAV mediated gene delivery during gene therapy.
  4. Phytother Res. 2021 Dec 02.
      Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is the most prevalent liver disease characterized by excessive lipid accumulation in hepatocytes. Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and autophagy play an important role in lipid accumulation. In this study, scutellarin (Scu) was examined in palmitic acid-treated HepG2 cells and C57/BL6 mice fed a high-fat diet (HFD). Scu reduced intracellular lipid content and inhibited sterol regulatory element binding protein-1c (SREBP-1c)-mediated lipid synthesis and fatty acid translocase-mediated lipid uptake in HepG2 cells. Additionally, Scu restored impaired autophagy and inhibited excessive activation of ER stress in vivo and in vitro. Moreover, Scu upregulated forkhead box O transcription factor 1-mediated autophagy by inhibiting inositol-requiring enzyme 1α (IRE1α)/X-box-binding protein 1 (XBP1) branch activation, while XBP1s overexpression exacerbated the lipid accumulation and impaired autophagy in HepG2 cells and also weakened the positive effects of Scu. Furthermore, Scu attenuated ER stress by activating autophagy, ultimately downregulating SREBP-1c-mediated lipid synthesis, and autophagy inhibitors offset these beneficial effects. Scu inhibited the crosstalk between autophagy and ER stress and downregulated saturated fatty acid-induced lipid accumulation in hepatocytes. These findings demonstrate that Scu ameliorates hepatic lipid accumulation by enhancing autophagy and suppressing ER stress via the IRE1α/XBP1 pathway.
    Keywords:  XBP1s; autophagy; endoplasmic reticulum stress; nonalcoholic fatty liver disease; scutellarin
  5. Eur J Pharmacol. 2021 Nov 30. pii: S0014-2999(21)00821-9. [Epub ahead of print] 174665
      INTRODUCTION: The function of endoplasmic reticulum (ER), a Ca2+ storage compartment and site of protein folding, is altered by disruption of intracellular homeostasis. Misfolded proteins accumulated in the ER lead to ER stress (ERS), unfolded protein response (UPR) activation and ER Ca2+ loss. Myocardial stunning is a temporary contractile dysfunction, which occurs after brief ischemic periods with minimal or no cell death, being oxidative stress and Ca2+ overload potential underlying mechanisms. Myocardial stunning induces ERS response with negatively impact on the post-ischemic mechanical performance through an unknown mechanism.AIMS: In this study, we explored whether ER Ca2+ efflux through the translocon, a major Ca2+ leak channel, contributes to Ca2+ mishandling and the consequent contractile abnormalities of the stunned myocardium.
    METHODS: Mechanical performance, cytosolic Ca2+, UPR markers and oxidative state were evaluated in perfused rat/mouse hearts subjected to a brief ischemia followed by reperfusion (I/R) in absence or presence of the translocon inhibitor, emetine (1 μM), comparing its effects with those of the chaperones TUDCA (30 μM) and 4-PBA (3 mM).
    RESULTS: Emetine treatment precluded the I/R-induced increase in UPR signaling markers and improved the contractile recovery together with a remarkable attenuation in myocardial stiffness when compared to I/R hearts with no drug. This alleviation of I/R-induced mechanical abnormalities was more effective than that obtained with the chemical chaperones, TUDCA and 4-PBA. Moreover, emetine treatment produced a striking improvement in diastolic Ca2+ handling with a partial recovery of the I/R-induced oxidative stress.
    CONCLUSION: Blocking ER Ca2+ store depletion via translocon suppressed ER stress and improved mechanical performance and diastolic Ca2+ handling of stunned myocardium. Modulation of translocon permeability emerges as a therapeutic approach to face dysfunctional consequences of the I/R injury.
  6. Environ Toxicol. 2021 Dec 01.
      Osteosarcoma, one of primary bone tumor in children and young adults, has poor prognosis and drug resistances to chemotherapy. In order to reinforce the conventional therapies and antagonize the osteosarcoma in patients, a novel strategy is required for developing a new treatment. In this study, surfactin, a natural product from Bacillus subtilis, showed the efficiency of cell death in osteosarcoma, but not in normal cells. Surfactin triggers ER stress mechanism by promoting the aberrant Ca2+ release from ER lumen and ER-signaling to mitochondrial dysfunction following caspases activation mediating cell apoptosis. Surfactin-induced ER stress not only upregulated of glucose-regulated protein 78/94 and IRE1-ASK1-JNK pathway but also leading to calpains and Bcl-2 proteins family involving the release of cytochrome c. The releases into cytosol trigger the cleavage of caspase-9 and caspase-3 to induce cell apoptosis. In this study, surfactin demonstrated the potential functions to trigger the ER stress, ER stress-associated IRE1-ASK1-JNK signaling pathway, mitochondrial dysfunction, and caspase activations leading to programmed cell apoptosis. Importantly, implicating the signaling pathway that regulates the connection between ER stress and mitochondrial dysfunction causing apoptosis associated with surfactin. These results indicated a potential application of surfactin strengthen current conventional therapies.
    Keywords:  ASK1; ER stress; IRE1; osteosarcoma; surfactin