bims-meprid Biomed News
on Metabolic-dependent epigenetic reprogramming in differentiation and disease
Issue of 2021‒04‒11
four papers selected by
Alessandro Carrer
Veneto Institute of Molecular Medicine

  1. Clin Transl Oncol. 2021 Apr 07.
      PURPOSE: Glutamine plays an important role in tumor metabolism and progression. This research aimed to find out how Gln exert their effects on laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC).METHODS: Cell proliferation was measured by CCK8 and EdU assay, mitochondrial bioenergetic activity was measured by mitochondrial stress tests. Gene expression profiling was revealed by RNA sequencing and validated by RT-qPCR. In LSCC patients, protein expression in tumor and adjacent tissues was examined and scored by IHC staining. RNAi was performed by stably expressed shRNA in TU177 cells. In vivo tumor growth analysis was performed using a nude mouse tumorigenicity model.
    RESULTS: Gln deprivation suppressed TU177 cell proliferation, which was restored by αKG supplementation. By transcriptomic analysis, we identified CECR2, which encodes a histone acetyl-lysine reader, as the downstream target gene for Gln and αKG. In LSCC patients, the expression of CECR2 in tumors was lower than adjacent tissues. Furthermore, deficiency of CECR2 promoted tumor cell growth both in vitro and in vivo, suggesting it has tumor suppressor effects. Besides, cell proliferation inhibited by Gln withdrawal could be restored by CECR2 depletion, and the proliferation boosted by αKG supplementation could be magnified either, suggested that CECR2 feedback suppressed Gln and αKG's effect on tumor growth. Transcriptomic profiling revealed CECR2 regulated the expression of a series of genes involved in tumor progression.
    CONCLUSION: We confirmed the Gln-αKG-CECR2 axis contributes to tumor growth in LSCC. This finding provided a potential therapeutic opportunity for the use of associated metabolites as a potential treatment for LSCC.
    Keywords:  CECR2; Glutamine metabolism; Laryngeal squamous cell carcinoma; α-ketoglutarate
  2. Front Physiol. 2021 ;12 645857
      Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is characterized by organ remodeling and fibrosis due to failed wound repair after on-going or severe injury. Key to this process is the continued activation and presence of matrix-producing renal fibroblasts. In cancer, metabolic alterations help cells to acquire and maintain a malignant phenotype. More recent evidence suggests that something similar occurs in the fibroblast during activation. To support these functions, pro-fibrotic signals released in response to injury induce metabolic reprograming to meet the high bioenergetic and biosynthetic demands of the (myo)fibroblastic phenotype. Fibrogenic signals such as TGF-β1 trigger a rewiring of cellular metabolism with a shift toward glycolysis, uncoupling from mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation, and enhanced glutamine metabolism. These adaptations may also have more widespread implications with redirection of acetyl-CoA directly linking changes in cellular metabolism and regulatory protein acetylation. Evidence also suggests that injury primes cells to these metabolic responses. In this review we discuss the key metabolic events that have led to a reappraisal of the regulation of fibroblast differentiation and function in CKD.
    Keywords:  TGF-β1; fibroblast; fibrosis; glutaminolysis; glycolysis; metabolic; metabolism; priming
  3. Am J Stem Cells. 2021 ;10(1): 1-17
      Historically, primordial germ cells (PGCs) have been a good model to study pluripotency. Despite their low numbers and limited accessibility in the mouse embryo, they can be easily and rapidly reprogrammed at high efficiency with external physicochemical factors and do not require transcription factor transfection. Employing this model to deepen our understanding of cell reprogramming, we specifically aimed to determine the relevance of Ca2+ signal transduction pathway components in the reprogramming process. Our results showed that PGC reprogramming requires a normal extracellular [Ca2+] range, in contrast to neoplastic or transformed cells, which can continue to proliferate in Ca2+-deficient media, differentiating normal reprogramming from neoplastic transformation. Our results also showed that a spike in extracellular [Ca2+] of 1-3 mM can directly reprogram PGC. Intracellular manipulation of Ca2+ signal transduction pathway components revealed that inhibition of classical Ca2+ and diacylglycerol (DAG)-dependent PKCs, or intriguingly, of only the novel DAG-dependent PKC, PKCε, were able to induce reprogramming. PKCε inhibition changed the metabolism of PGCs toward glycolysis, increasing the proportion of inactive mitochondria. This metabolic switch from oxidative phosphorylation to glycolysis is mediated by hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs), given we found upregulation of both HIF1α and HIF2α in the first 48 hours of culturing. PKCε inhibition did not change the classical pluripotency gene expression of PGCs, Oct4, or Nanog. PKCε inhibition changed the histone acetylation of PGCs, with histones H2B, H3, and H4 becoming acetylated in PKCε-inhibited cultures (markers were H2BacK20, H3acK9, and H4acK5K8, K12, K16), suggesting that reprogramming by PKCε inhibition is mediated by histone acetylation.
    Keywords:  Cellular reprograming; HIF; PKC; calcium signaling; histone acetylation; pluripotency; primordial germ cells
  4. Cold Spring Harb Perspect Biol. 2021 Apr 05. pii: a037770. [Epub ahead of print]
      The formation of long-lived memory T cells is a critical feature of the adaptive immune response. T cells undergo metabolic reprogramming to establish a functional memory population. While initial studies characterized key metabolic pathways necessary for memory T-cell development, recent findings highlight that metabolic regulation of memory T-cell subsets is diverse. Here we describe the different requirements for metabolic programs and metabolism-related signaling pathways in memory T-cell development. We further discuss the contribution of cellular metabolism to memory T-cell functional reprogramming and stemness within acute and chronic inflammatory environments. Last, we highlight knowledge gaps and propose approaches to determine the roles of metabolites and metabolic enzymes in memory T-cell fate. Understanding how cellular metabolism regulates a functionally diverse memory population will undoubtedly provide new therapeutic insights to modulate protective T-cell immunity in human disease.