bims-proteo Biomed News
on Proteostasis
Issue of 2021‒12‒19
28 papers selected by
Eric Chevet

  1. Nature. 2021 Dec 15.
      Organelles move along differentially modified microtubules to establish and maintain their proper distributions and functions1,2. However, how cells interpret these post-translational microtubule modification codes to selectively regulate organelle positioning remains largely unknown. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is an interconnected network of diverse morphologies that extends promiscuously throughout the cytoplasm3, forming abundant contacts with other organelles4. Dysregulation of endoplasmic reticulum morphology is tightly linked to neurologic disorders and cancer5,6. Here we demonstrate that three membrane-bound endoplasmic reticulum proteins preferentially interact with different microtubule populations, with CLIMP63 binding centrosome microtubules, kinectin (KTN1) binding perinuclear polyglutamylated microtubules, and p180 binding glutamylated microtubules. Knockout of these proteins or manipulation of microtubule populations and glutamylation status results in marked changes in endoplasmic reticulum positioning, leading to similar redistributions of other organelles. During nutrient starvation, cells modulate CLIMP63 protein levels and p180-microtubule binding to bidirectionally move endoplasmic reticulum and lysosomes for proper autophagic responses.
  2. Nat Commun. 2021 Dec 15. 12(1): 7310
      Inositol requiring enzyme 1 (IRE1) mitigates endoplasmic-reticulum (ER) stress by orchestrating the unfolded-protein response (UPR). IRE1 spans the ER membrane, and signals through a cytosolic kinase-endoribonuclease module. The endoribonuclease generates the transcription factor XBP1s by intron excision between similar RNA stem-loop endomotifs, and depletes select cellular mRNAs through regulated IRE1-dependent decay (RIDD). Paradoxically, in mammals RIDD seems to target only mRNAs with XBP1-like endomotifs, while in flies RIDD exhibits little sequence restriction. By comparing nascent and total IRE1α-controlled mRNAs in human cells, we identify not only canonical endomotif-containing RIDD substrates, but also targets without such motifs-degraded by a process we coin RIDDLE, for RIDD lacking endomotif. IRE1α displays two basic endoribonuclease modalities: highly specific, endomotif-directed cleavage, minimally requiring dimers; and more promiscuous, endomotif-independent processing, requiring phospho-oligomers. An oligomer-deficient IRE1α mutant fails to support RIDDLE in vitro and in cells. Our results advance current mechanistic understanding of the UPR.
  3. RNA. 2021 Dec 16. pii: rna.078964.121. [Epub ahead of print]
      Ribosome stalls can result in ribosome collisions that elicit quality control responses, one function of which is to prevent ribosome frameshifting, an activity that entails interaction of the conserved yeast protein Mbf1 with uS3 on colliding ribosomes. However, the full spectrum of factors that mediate frameshifting during ribosome collisions is unknown. To delineate such factors in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we used genetic selections for mutants that affect frameshifting from a known ribosome stall site, CGA codon repeats. We show that the general translation elongation factor eEF3 and the Integrated Stress Response (ISR) pathway components Gcn1 and Gcn20 modulate frameshifting in opposing manners. We found a mutant form of eEF3 that specifically suppressed frameshifting, but not translation inhibition by CGA codons. Thus, we infer that frameshifting at collided ribosomes requires eEF3, which facilitates tRNA-mRNA translocation and E-site tRNA release in yeast and other single cell organisms. By contrast, we found that removal of either Gcn1 or Gcn20, which bind collided ribosomes with Mbf1, increased frameshifting. Thus, we conclude that frameshifting is suppressed by Gcn1 and Gcn20, although these effects are not mediated primarily through activation of the ISR. Furthermore, we examined the relationship between eEF3-mediated frameshifting and other quality control mechanisms, finding that Mbf1 requires either Hel2 or Gcn1 to suppress frameshifting with wild type eEF3. Thus, these results provide evidence of a direct link between translation elongation and frameshifting at collided ribosomes, as well as evidence that frameshifting is constrained by quality control mechanisms that act on collided ribosomes.
    Keywords:  Integrated Stress Response; eEF3; frameshifting; ribosome quality control; translation
  4. J Cell Biol. 2022 Feb 07. pii: e202104044. [Epub ahead of print]221(2):
      Progranulin is a lysosomal protein whose haploinsufficiency causes frontotemporal dementia, while homozygous loss of progranulin causes neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis, a lysosomal storage disease. The sensitivity of cells to progranulin deficiency raises important questions about how cells coordinate intracellular trafficking of progranulin to ensure its efficient delivery to lysosomes. In this study, we discover that progranulin interactions with prosaposin, another lysosomal protein, first occur within the lumen of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and are required for the efficient ER exit of progranulin. Mechanistically, we identify an interaction between prosaposin and Surf4, a receptor that promotes loading of lumenal cargos into COPII-coated vesicles, and establish that Surf4 is critical for the efficient export of progranulin and prosaposin from the ER. Collectively, this work demonstrates that a network of interactions occurring early in the secretory pathway promote the ER exit and subsequent lysosomal delivery of newly translated progranulin and prosaposin.
  5. EMBO Rep. 2021 Dec 17. e53210
      The ER membrane protein complex (EMC) is required for the biogenesis of a subset of tail anchored (TA) and polytopic membrane proteins, including Rhodopsin-1 (Rh1) and the TRP channel. To understand the physiological implications of EMC-dependent membrane protein biogenesis, we perform a bioinformatic identification of Drosophila TA proteins. From 254 predicted TA proteins, screening in larval eye discs identified two proteins that require EMC for their biogenesis: fan and Xport-A. Fan is required for male fertility in Drosophila and we show that EMC is also required for this process. Xport-A is essential for the biogenesis of both Rh1 and TRP, raising the possibility that disruption of Rh1 and TRP biogenesis in EMC mutants is secondary to the Xport-A defect. We show that EMC is required for Xport-A TMD membrane insertion and that EMC-independent Xport-A mutants rescue Rh1 and TRP biogenesis in EMC mutants. Finally, our work also reveals a role for Xport-A in a glycosylation-dependent triage mechanism during Rh1 biogenesis in the endoplasmic reticulum.
    Keywords:  ER membrane protein complex; Rh1; TRP; Xport-A; tail anchored proteins
  6. Plant J. 2021 Dec 11.
      Proteostasis of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is controlled by sophisticated signaling pathways that are collectively called the unfolded protein response (UPR) and are initiated by specialized ER membrane-associated sensors. The evidence that complete loss-of-function mutations of the most conserved of the UPR sensors, inositol-requiring enzyme 1 (IRE1), dysregulates tissue growth and development in metazoans and plants raises the fundamental question as to how IRE1 is connected to organismal growth. To address this question, we interrogated the Arabidopsis primary root, an established model for organ development, using the tractable Arabidopsis IRE1 mutant ire1a ire1b, which has marked root development defects in the absence of exogenous stress. We demonstrate that IRE1 is required to reach maximum rates of cell elongation and root growth. We also established that in the actively growing ire1a ire1b mutant root tips the Target of Rapamycin (TOR) kinase, a widely conserved pro-growth regulator, is hyperactive, and that, unlike cell proliferation, the rate of cell differentiation is enhanced in ire1a ire1b in a TOR-dependent manner. By functionally connecting two essential growth regulators, these results underpin a novel and critical role of IRE1 in organ development and indicate that, as cells exit an undifferentiated state, IRE1 is required to monitor TOR activity to balance cell expansion and maturation during organ biogenesis.
    Keywords:   Arabidopsis thaliana ; IRE1; TOR; development; differentiation; unfolded protein response
  7. Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2021 Dec 08. pii: S1084-9521(21)00305-0. [Epub ahead of print]
      The proteome adapts to multiple situations occurring along the life of the cell. To face these continuous changes, the cell uses posttranslational modifications (PTMs) to control the localization, association with multiple partners, stability, and activity of protein targets. One of the most dynamic protein involved in PTMs is Ubiquitin (Ub). Together with other members of the same family, known as Ubiquitin-like (UbL) proteins, Ub rebuilds the architecture of a protein in a few minutes to change its properties in a very efficient way. This capacity of Ub and UbL is in part due to their potential to form complex architectures when attached to target proteins or when forming Ub chains. The highly dynamic formation and remodeling of Ub chains is regulated by the action of conjugating and deconjugating enzymes that determine, in due time, the correct chain architecture for a particular cellular function. Chain remodeling occurs in response to physiologic stimuli but also in pathologic situations. Here, we illustrate well-documented cases of chain remodeling during DNA repair, activation of the NF-κB pathway and autophagy, as examples of this dynamic regulation. The crucial role of enzymes and cofactors regulating chain remodeling is discussed.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; DNA repair; NF-κB signaling; Proteasome; Ubiquitin chains; Ubiquitin enzymes
  8. Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2021 Dec 08. pii: S1084-9521(21)00292-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      We now have a comprehensive inventory of ubiquitin system components. Understanding of any system also needs an appreciation of how components are organised together. Quantitative proteomics has provided us with a census of their relative populations in several model cell types. Here, by examining large scale unbiased data sets, we seek to identify and map those components, which principally reside on the major organelles of the endomembrane system. We present the consensus distribution of > 50 ubiquitin modifying enzymes, E2s, E3s and DUBs, that possess transmembrane domains. This analysis reveals that the ER and endosomal compartments have a diverse cast of resident E3s, whilst the Golgi and mitochondria operate with a more restricted palette. We describe key functions of ubiquitylation that are specific to each compartment and relate this to their signature complement of ubiquitin modifying components.
    Keywords:  DUB; E3 ubiquitin ligase; PA-TM-RING; Proteomics; Subcellular map; Ubiquitin
  9. J Biol Chem. 2021 Dec 14. pii: S0021-9258(21)01304-1. [Epub ahead of print] 101494
      Changing physiological conditions can increase the need for protein degradative capacity in eukaryotic cells. Both the ubiquitin-proteasome system and autophagy contribute to protein degradation. However, these processes can be differently regulated depending on the physiological conditions. Strikingly, proteasomes themselves can be a substrate for autophagy. The signals and molecular mechanisms that govern proteasome autophagy (proteaphagy) are only partly understood. Here, we used immunoblots, native gel analyses, and fluorescent microscopy to understand the regulation of proteaphagy in response to genetic and small molecule-induced perturbations. Our data indicate that chemical inhibition of the master nutrient sensor TORC1 (inhibition of which induces general autophagy) with rapamycin induces a bi-phasic response where proteasome levels are upregulated followed by an autophagy-dependent reduction. Surprisingly, several conditions that result in inhibited TORC1, such as caffeinine treatment or nitrogen starvation, only induced proteaphagy (i.e. without any proteasome upregulation), suggesting a convergence of signals upstream of proteaphagy under different physiological conditions. Indeed, we found that several conditions that activated general autophagy did not induce proteaphagy, further distinguishing proteaphagy from general autophagy. Consistent with this, we show that Atg11, a selective autophagy receptor, as well as the MAP kinases Mpk1, Mkk1, and Mkk2 all play a role in autophagy of proteasomes, while they are dispensable for general autophagy. Taken together, our data provide new insights into the molecular regulation of proteaphagy by demonstrating that degradation of proteasome complexes is specifically regulated under different autophagy-inducing conditions.
    Keywords:  autophagy; proteaphagy; proteasome; proteasome inhibitor; protein degradation; starvation; target of rapamycin (TOR); vacuole; yeast
  10. EMBO J. 2021 Dec 14. e105531
      Recessive gene mutations underlie many developmental disorders and often lead to disabling neurological problems. Here, we report identification of a homozygous c.170G>A (p.Cys57Tyr or C57Y) mutation in the gene coding for protein disulfide isomerase A3 (PDIA3, also known as ERp57), an enzyme that catalyzes formation of disulfide bonds in the endoplasmic reticulum, to be associated with syndromic intellectual disability. Experiments in zebrafish embryos show that PDIA3C57Y expression is pathogenic and causes developmental defects such as axonal disorganization as well as skeletal abnormalities. Expression of PDIA3C57Y in the mouse hippocampus results in impaired synaptic plasticity and memory consolidation. Proteomic and functional analyses reveal that PDIA3C57Y expression leads to dysregulation of cell adhesion and actin cytoskeleton dynamics, associated with altered integrin biogenesis and reduced neuritogenesis. Biochemical studies show that PDIA3C57Y has decreased catalytic activity and forms disulfide-crosslinked aggregates that abnormally interact with chaperones in the endoplasmic reticulum. Thus, rare disease gene variant can provide insight into how perturbations of neuronal proteostasis can affect the function of the nervous system.
    Keywords:  actin cytoskeleton; cell adhesion; integrins; intellectual disability; protein disulfide isomerase
  11. PLoS Genet. 2021 Dec;17(12): e1009934
      MicroRNAs (miRNA) are short non-coding RNAs widely implicated in gene regulation. Most metazoan miRNAs utilize the RNase III enzymes Drosha and Dicer for biogenesis. One notable exception is the RNA polymerase II transcription start sites (TSS) miRNAs whose biogenesis does not require Drosha. The functional importance of the TSS-miRNA biogenesis is uncertain. To better understand the function of TSS-miRNAs, we applied a modified Crosslinking, Ligation, and Sequencing of Hybrids on Argonaute (AGO-qCLASH) to identify the targets for TSS-miRNAs in HCT116 colorectal cancer cells with or without DROSHA knockout. We observed that miR-320a hybrids dominate in TSS-miRNA hybrids identified by AGO-qCLASH. Targets for miR-320a are enriched for the eIF2 signaling pathway, a downstream component of the unfolded protein response. Consistently, in miR-320a mimic- and antagomir- transfected cells, differentially expressed gene products are associated with eIF2 signaling. Within the AGO-qCLASH data, we identified the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) chaperone calnexin as a direct miR-320a down-regulated target, thus connecting miR-320a to the unfolded protein response. During ER stress, but not amino acid deprivation, miR-320a up-regulates ATF4, a critical transcription factor for resolving ER stress. In summary, our study investigates the targetome of the TSS-miRNAs in colorectal cancer cells and establishes miR-320a as a regulator of unfolded protein response.
  12. Dis Model Mech. 2021 Dec 17. pii: dmm.049119. [Epub ahead of print]
      Metazoans have evolved various quality control mechanisms to cope with cellular stress inflicted by external and physiological conditions. ATF4 is a major effector of the Integrated Stress Response (ISR), an evolutionarily conserved pathway that mediates adaptation to various cellular stressors. Loss of function of Drosophila ATF4, encoded by the gene cryptocephal (crc), results in lethality during pupal development. The roles of crc in Drosophila disease models and in adult tissue homeostasis thus remain poorly understood. Here, we report that a protein-trap MiMIC insertion in the crc locus generates a crc-GFP fusion protein that allows visualization of crc activity in vivo. This allele also acts as a hypomorphic mutant that uncovers previously unknown roles for crc. Specifically, the crc protein-trap line shows crc-GFP induction in a Drosophila model for Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP). This crc allele renders flies more vulnerable to amino acid deprivation and age-dependent retinal degeneration. These mutants also show defects in wing veins and oocyte maturation. Together, our data reveal previously unknown roles for crc in development, cellular homeostasis and photoreceptor survival.
    Keywords:  ATF4; AdRP; Crc; ER stress; ISR; Retinal degeneration; Retinitis pigmentosa
  13. PLoS Genet. 2021 Dec;17(12): e1009946
      Cell competition induces the elimination of less-fit "loser" cells by fitter "winner" cells. In Drosophila, cells heterozygous mutant in ribosome genes, Rp/+, known as Minutes, are outcompeted by wild-type cells. Rp/+ cells display proteotoxic stress and the oxidative stress response, which drive the loser status. Minute cell competition also requires the transcription factors Irbp18 and Xrp1, but how these contribute to the loser status is partially understood. Here we provide evidence that initial proteotoxic stress in RpS3/+ cells is Xrp1-independent. However, Xrp1 is sufficient to induce proteotoxic stress in otherwise wild-type cells and is necessary for the high levels of proteotoxic stress found in RpS3/+ cells. Surprisingly, Xrp1 is also induced downstream of proteotoxic stress, and is required for the competitive elimination of cells suffering from proteotoxic stress or overexpressing Nrf2. Our data suggests that a feed-forward loop between Xrp1, proteotoxic stress, and Nrf2 drives Minute cells to become losers.
  14. Mol Biol Cell. 2021 Dec 15. mbcE21090436
      Apolipoprotein B (ApoB) is the primary component of atherogenic lipoproteins, which transport serum fats and cholesterol. Therefore, elevated levels of circulating ApoB are a primary risk factor for cardiovascular disease. During ApoB biosynthesis in the liver and small intestine under nutrient-rich conditions, ApoB cotranslationally translocates into the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and is lipidated and ultimately secreted. Under lipid-poor conditions, ApoB is targeted for ER Associated Degradation (ERAD). Although prior work identified select chaperones that regulate ApoB biogenesis, the contributions of cytoplasmic Hsp40s are undefined. To this end, we screened ApoB-expressing yeast and determined that a class A ER-associated Hsp40, Ydj1, associates with and facilitates the ERAD of ApoB. Consistent with these results, a homologous Hsp40, DNAJA1, functioned similarly in rat hepatoma cells. DNAJA1 deficient cells also secreted hyperlipidated lipoproteins, in accordance with attenuated ERAD. In contrast to the role of DNAJA1 during ERAD, DNAJB1-a class B Hsp40-helped stabilize ApoB. Depletion of DNAJA1 and DNAJB1 also led to opposing effects on ApoB ubiquitination. These data represent the first example in which different Hsp40s exhibit disparate effects during regulated protein biogenesis in the ER, and highlight distinct roles that chaperones can play on a single ERAD substrate.
  15. Neural Regen Res. 2022 Jul;17(7): 1423-1430
      Protein synthesis is essential for cells to perform life metabolic processes. Pathological alterations of protein content can lead to particular diseases. Cells have an intrinsic array of mechanisms and pathways that are activated when protein misfolding, accumulation, aggregation or mislocalization occur. Some of them (like the unfolded protein response) represent complex interactions between endoplasmic reticulum sensors and elongation factors that tend to increase expression of chaperone proteins and/or repress translation in order to restore protein homeostasis (also known as proteostasis). This is even more important in neurons, as they are very susceptible to harmful effects associated with protein overload and proteostatic mechanisms are less effective with age. Several neurodegenerative pathologies such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's diseases, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia exhibit a particular molecular signature of distinct, unbalanced protein overload. In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia, the majority of cases present intracellular inclusions of ubiquitinated transactive response DNA-binding protein of 43 kDa (TDP-43). TDP-43 is an RNA binding protein that participates in RNA metabolism, among other functions. Dysregulation of TDP-43 (e.g. aggregation and mislocalization) can dramatically affect neurons, and this has been linked to disease development. Expression of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis/frontotemporal dementia TDP-43-related mutations in cellular and animal models has been shown to recapitulate key features of the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis/frontotemporal dementia disease spectrum. These variants can be causative of degeneration onset and progression. Most neurodegenerative diseases (including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia) have no cure at the moment; however, modulating translation has recently emerged as an attractive approach that can be performed at several steps (i.e. regulating activation of initiation and elongation factors, inhibiting unfolded protein response activation or inducing chaperone expression and activity). This review focuses on the features of protein imbalance in neurodegenerative disorders and the relevance of developing therapeutical compounds aiming at restoring proteostasis. We strive to highlight the importance of research on drugs that, not only restore protein imbalance without compromising translational activity of cells, but are also as safe as possible for the patients.
    Keywords:  amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; frontotemporal dementia; neurodegeneration; neurodegenerative diseases; protein imbalance; protein synthesis modulation; proteostasis; therapeutical compounds; transactive response DNA-binding protein of 43 kDa; translation; unfolded protein response
  16. Drug Discov Today Technol. 2020 Dec;pii: S1740-6749(20)30026-3. [Epub ahead of print]37 73-82
      Small molecule induced protein degradation has created tremendous excitement in drug discovery within recent years. Not being confined to target inhibition and being able to remove disease-causing protein targets via engagement and subsequent ubiquitination has provided scientists with a powerful tool to expand the druggable space. At the center of this approach sits the ternary complex formed between an E3 ubiquitin ligase, the small molecule degrader, and the target protein. A productive ternary complex is pivotal for a ubiquitin to be transferred to a surface lysine of the target protein resulting in poly-ubiquitination which enables recognition and finally degradation by the proteasome. As understanding the ternary complex means understanding the degradation process, many efforts are put into obtaining structural information of the ternary complex and getting a snapshot of the underlying conformations and molecular contacts. Locking this transient trimeric intermediate in a crystalline state has proven to be very demanding but the obtained results have tremendously improved our understanding of small molecule degraders. This review discusses target protein degradation from a structural perspective and highlights the evolution of certain degraders based on the obtained structural insights.
  17. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Dec 21. pii: e2113060118. [Epub ahead of print]118(51):
      Herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection relies on immediate early proteins that initiate viral replication. Among them, ICP0 is known, for many years, to facilitate the onset of viral gene expression and reactivation from latency. However, how ICP0 itself is regulated remains elusive. Through genetic analyses, we identify that the viral γ134.5 protein, an HSV virulence factor, interacts with and prevents ICP0 from proteasomal degradation. Furthermore, we show that the host E3 ligase TRIM23, recently shown to restrict the replication of HSV-1 (and certain other viruses) by inducing autophagy, triggers the proteasomal degradation of ICP0 via K11- and K48-linked ubiquitination. Functional analyses reveal that the γ134.5 protein binds to and inactivates TRIM23 through blockade of K27-linked TRIM23 autoubiquitination. Deletion of γ134.5 or ICP0 in a recombinant HSV-1 impairs viral replication, whereas ablation of TRIM23 markedly rescues viral growth. Herein, we show that TRIM23, apart from its role in autophagy-mediated HSV-1 restriction, down-regulates ICP0, whereas viral γ134.5 functions to disable TRIM23. Together, these results demonstrate that posttranslational regulation of ICP0 by virus and host factors determines the outcome of HSV-1 infection.
    Keywords:  TRIM23; gene expression; herpes simplex virus; viral replication; virus–host interaction
  18. Biochem Soc Trans. 2021 Dec 16. pii: BST20210374. [Epub ahead of print]
      The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a dynamic and organised extracellular network assembled from proteins and carbohydrates exported from the cell. The ECM is critical for multicellular life, providing spatial and temporal cellular cues to maintain tissue homeostasis. Consequently, ECM production must be carefully balanced with turnover to ensure homeostasis; ECM dysfunction culminates in disease. Hsp90 is a molecular chaperone central to protein homeostasis, including in the ECM. Intracellular and extracellular Hsp90 isoforms collaborate to regulate the levels and status of proteins in the ECM via multiple mechanisms. In so doing, Hsp90 regulates ECM dynamics, and changes in Hsp90 levels or activity support the development of ECM-related diseases, like cancer and fibrosis. Consequently, Hsp90 levels may have prognostic value, while inhibition of Hsp90 may have therapeutic potential in conditions characterised by ECM dysfunction.
    Keywords:  extracellular matrix; fibrosis; heat shock proteins; molecular chaperones; proteolysis
  19. FEBS J. 2021 May 02.
      Autophagy is an essential intracellular process for cellular quality control. It enables cell homeostasis through the selective degradation of harmful protein aggregates and damaged organelles. Autophagy is essential for recycling nutrients, generating energy to maintain cell viability in most tissues and during adverse conditions such as hypoxia/ischaemia. The progressive understanding of the mechanisms modulating autophagy in the vasculature has recently led numerous studies to link intact autophagic responses with endothelial cell (EC) homeostasis and function. Preserved autophagic flux within the ECs has an essential role in maintaining their physiological characteristics, whereas defective autophagy can promote endothelial pro-inflammatory and atherogenic phenotype. However, we still lack a good knowledge of the complete molecular repertoire controlling various aspects of endothelial autophagy and how this is associated with vascular diseases. Here, we provide an overview of the current state of the art of autophagy in ECs. We review the discoveries that have so far defined autophagy as an essential mechanism in vascular biology and analyse how autophagy influences ECs behaviour in vascular disease. Finally, we emphasise opportunities for compounds to regulate autophagy in ECs and discuss the challenges of exploiting them to resolve vascular disease.
    Keywords:  autophagy; endothelial cells; inflammation; senescence; therapeutic modulation; vascular disease
  20. Nat Aging. 2021 Aug;1(8): 634-650
      Autophagy is a fundamental cellular process that eliminates molecules and subcellular elements, including nucleic acids, proteins, lipids and organelles, via lysosome-mediated degradation to promote homeostasis, differentiation, development and survival. While autophagy is intimately linked to health, the intricate relationship among autophagy, aging and disease remains unclear. This Review examines several emerging features of autophagy and postulates how they may be linked to aging as well as to the development and progression of disease. In addition, we discuss current preclinical evidence arguing for the use of autophagy modulators as suppressors of age-related pathologies such as neurodegenerative diseases. Finally, we highlight key questions and propose novel research avenues that will likely reveal new links between autophagy and the hallmarks of aging. Understanding the precise interplay between autophagy and the risk of age-related pathologies across organisms will eventually facilitate the development of clinical applications that promote long-term health.
  21. EMBO Rep. 2021 Dec 13. e51287
      RASSF1A promoter methylation has been correlated with tumor dedifferentiation and aggressive oncogenic behavior. Nevertheless, the underlying mechanism of RASSF1A-dependent tumor dedifferentiation remains elusive. Here, we show that RASSF1A directly uncouples the NOTCH-HES1 axis, a key suppressor of differentiation. Interestingly, the crosstalk of RASSF1A with HES1 occurs independently from the signaling route connecting RASSF1A with the Hippo pathway. At the molecular level, we demonstrate that RASSF1A acts as a scaffold essential for the SUMO-targeted E3 ligase SNURF/RNF4 to target HES1 for degradation. The reciprocal relationship between RASSF1A and HES1 is evident across a wide range of human tumors, highlighting the clinical significance of the identified pathway. We show that HES1 upregulation in a RASSF1A-depleted environment renders cells non-responsive to the downstream effects of γ-secretase inhibitors (GSIs) which restrict signaling at the level of the NOTCH receptor. Taken together, we report a mechanism through which RASSF1A exerts autonomous regulation of the critical Notch effector HES1, thus classifying RASSF1A expression as an integral determinant of the clinical effectiveness of Notch inhibitors.
    Keywords:  Hippo-Notch signaling crosstalk; RASSF1A-HES1-SNURF/RNF4 complex; cancer stemness; γ-secretase inhibitors (GSIs)
  22. Autophagy. 2021 Dec 14. 1-17
      Hypoxia is a common feature of solid tumors and is associated with increased tumor progression, resistance to therapy and increased metastasis. Hence, tumor hypoxia is a prognostic factor independent of treatment modality. To survive hypoxia, cells activate macroautophagy/autophagy. Paradoxically, in several cancer types, mutations or loss of essential autophagy genes have been reported that are associated with earlier onset of tumor growth. However, to our knowledge, the phenotypic and therapeutic consequences of autophagy deficiency have remained unexplored. In this study, we determined autophagy-defects in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and observed that expression of ATG12 (autophagy related 12) was lost in 25%-40% of HNSCC. In line, ATG12 loss is associated with absence of hypoxia, as determined by pimonidazole immunohistochemistry. Hence, ATG12 loss is associated with improved prognosis after therapy in two independent HNSCC cohorts and 7 additional cancer types. In vivo, ATG12 targeting resulted in decreased hypoxia tolerance, increased necrosis and sensitivity of the tumor to therapy, but in vitro ATG12-deficient cells displayed enhanced survival in nutrient-rich culture medium. Besides oxygen, delivery of glucose was hampered in hypoxic regions in vivo, which increases the reliance of cells on other carbon sources (e.g., L-glutamine). We observed decreased intracellular L-glutamine levels in ATG12-deficient cells during hypoxia and increased cell killing after L-glutamine depletion, indicating a central role for ATG12 in maintaining L-glutamine homeostasis. Our results demonstrate that ATG12low tumors represent a phenotypically different subtype that, due to the lowered hypoxia tolerance, display a favorable outcome after therapy.Abbreviations: ARCON:accelerated radiotherapy with carbogen and nicotinamide; ATG: autophagy related; BrdUrd: bromodeoxyuridine; CA9/CAIX: carbonic anhydrase 9; HIF1A/HIF1α: hypoxia inducible factor 1 subunit alpha; HNSCC: head and neck squamous cell carcinoma; HPV: human papilloma virus; HR: hazard ratio; MAP1LC3B/LC3B: microtubule associated protein 1 light chain 3 beta; MEF: mouse embryonic fibroblast; mRNA: messenger ribonucleic acid; PCR: polymerase chain reaction; SLC2A1/GLUT1: solute carrier family 2 member 1; TCGA: the Cancer Genome Atlas; TME: tumor microenvironment; UTR: untranslated region; VEGF: vascular endothelial growth factor.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; cancer; glucose; head and neck cancer; hypoxia; prognosis; radiotherapy glutamine
  23. J Plant Physiol. 2021 Dec 02. pii: S0176-1617(21)00227-3. [Epub ahead of print]268 153588
      SUMOylation is a critical post-translational modification that regulates the nature and activity of protein substrates. The reaction is usually enhanced by a SIZ/PIAS-type of SUMO E3 ligase, but the functions of its homologs in maize have not yet been reported. In this study, we functionally characterized three members of this family of SUMO ligases, ZmSIZ1a, ZmSIZ1b, and ZmSIZ1c, from Zea mays. These maize SIZ1 homologs harbor conserved domains and structures with AtSIZ1, suggesting that they are potential functional SUMO ligases, which is supported by further biochemical data. The expression of these maize SIZ1 genes was detectable ubiquitously in different maize tissues and was usually induced by abiotic stresses. Expression of ZmSIZ1 members complements the leaf developmental defects of the AtSIZ1 mutant, suggesting their conserved function in development regulation. Interestingly, overexpression of ZmSIZ1c, but not ZmSIZ1a or ZmSIZ1b, in the wild-type Arabidopsis resulted in early flowering, implying that these members differ in terms of flowering control. Besides, overexpression of these ZmSIZ1 genes also improved salt tolerance in Arabidopsis. Collectively, our functional characterization of the ZmSIZ1 members provides hints for further investigation on the functions of SUMOylation in the development and stress responses in maize.
    Keywords:  Maize; SIZ1; SUMO ligase; SUMOylation; Zea mays
  24. Nat Commun. 2021 Dec 16. 12(1): 7318
      Proteasome substrate receptor hRpn13 is a promising anti-cancer target. By integrated in silico and biophysical screening, we identified a chemical scaffold that binds hRpn13 with non-covalent interactions that mimic the proteasome and a weak electrophile for Michael addition. hRpn13 Pru domain binds proteasomes and ubiquitin whereas its DEUBAD domain binds deubiquitinating enzyme UCHL5. NMR revealed lead compound XL5 to interdigitate into a hydrophobic pocket created by lateral movement of a Pru β-hairpin with an exposed end for Proteolysis Targeting Chimeras (PROTACs). Implementing XL5-PROTACs as chemical probes identified a DEUBAD-lacking hRpn13 species (hRpn13Pru) present naturally with cell type-dependent abundance. XL5-PROTACs preferentially target hRpn13Pru, causing its ubiquitination. Gene-editing and rescue experiments established hRpn13 requirement for XL5-PROTAC-triggered apoptosis. These data establish hRpn13 as an anti-cancer target for multiple myeloma and introduce an hRpn13-targeting scaffold that can be optimized for preclinical trials against hRpn13Pru-producing cancer types.
  25. iScience. 2021 Dec 17. 24(12): 103521
      Protein AMPylation is a posttranslational modification with an emerging role in neurodevelopment. In metazoans two highly conserved protein AMP-transferases together with a diverse group of AMPylated proteins have been identified using chemical proteomics and biochemical techniques. However, the function of AMPylation remains largely unknown. Particularly problematic is the localization of thus far identified AMPylated proteins and putative AMP-transferases. We show that protein AMPylation is likely a posttranslational modification of luminal lysosomal proteins characteristic in differentiating neurons. Through a combination of chemical proteomics, gel-based separation of modified and unmodified proteins, and an activity assay, we determine that the modified, lysosomal soluble form of exonuclease PLD3 increases dramatically during neuronal maturation and that AMPylation correlates with its catalytic activity. Together, our findings indicate that AMPylation is a so far unknown lysosomal posttranslational modification connected to neuronal differentiation and it may provide a molecular rationale behind lysosomal storage diseases and neurodegeneration.
    Keywords:  Cell biology; Classification Description; Molecular biology; Neuroscience
  26. FEBS J. 2021 Dec 16.
      DNA damage activates a robust transcriptional stress response, but much less is known about how DNA damage impacts translation. The advent of genome editing with Cas9 has intensified interest in understanding cellular responses to DNA damage. Here, we find that DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), including those induced by Cas9, trigger the loss of ribosomal protein RPS27A from ribosomes via p53-independent proteasomal degradation. Comparisons of Cas9 and dCas9 ribosome profiling and mRNA-seq experiments reveal a global translational response to DSBs that precedes changes in transcript abundance. Our results demonstrate that even a single double-strand break can lead to altered translational output and ribosome remodeling, suggesting caution in interpreting cellular phenotypes measured immediately after genome editing.
    Keywords:  DNA damage response; genome editing; ribosomes; translation
  27. FASEB J. 2022 Jan;36(1): e22103
      Ubiquitination has been shown to provide an essential regulatory role in modulating the duration and amplitude of the signaling activity in angiogenesis. While successive enzymatic reactions mediated by three distinct types of enzymes commonly known as E1, E2, and E3 are required for ubiquitination, the role of E3s which govern the final step of ubiquitination has been extensively analyzed in angiogenesis. In contrast, the role of E2s, which determine the context and functional consequences of ubiquitination, remains largely unknown with respect to angiogenesis. To better elucidate the role of E2s in modulating endothelial behaviors during angiogenesis, we first systematically analyze the expression pattern of E2s in endothelial cells (ECs) using previously published scRNA-seq data and identify ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme variant 1 (UBE2V1), an unconventional E2 without innate catalytic activity, as one of the most abundantly expressed E2s in ECs. While ubiquitously expressed in diverse cell types, abrogation of UBE2V1 significantly impairs proliferation and viability of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) without affecting other cell types, suggesting that UBE2V1 is likely to possess nonredundant functions in ECs. Consistent with this idea, UBE2V1 appears to be critical for morphogenesis and migration of ECs during angiogenesis. Interestingly, we find that UBE2V1 is essential for fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2)-induced angiogenesis, but appears to have minor effects on vascular endothelial growth factor-A-induced angiogenesis in vitro as well as in vivo. Therefore, it seems that UBE2V1 could enable ECs to distinguish two related yet distinct angiogenic cues. Mechanistically, we show that UBE2V1 promotes ubiquitination of MEK kinase 1, a key mediator of FGF2 signaling, to enhance phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 in HUVECs. Taken together, our results illustrate the unique role of UBE2V1 as a key modulator for angiogenic behaviors in ECs.
    Keywords:  FGF; MEKK1; UBE2V1; angiogenesis; ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme
  28. Biochem Soc Trans. 2021 Dec 16. pii: BST20210844. [Epub ahead of print]
      Cellular ageing is one of the main drivers of organismal ageing and holds keys towards improving the longevity and quality of the extended life. Elucidating mechanisms underlying the emergence of the aged cells as well as their altered responses to the environment will help understanding the evolutionarily defined longevity preferences across species with different strategies of survival. Much is understood about the role of alterations in the DNA, including many epigenetic modifications such as methylation, in relation to the aged cell phenotype. While transcriptomes of the aged cells are beginning to be better-characterised, their translational responses remain under active investigation. Many of the translationally controlled homeostatic pathways are centred around mitigation of DNA damage, cell stress response and regulation of the proliferative potential of the cells, and thus are critical for the aged cell function. Translation profiling-type studies have boosted the opportunities in discovering the function of protein biosynthesis control and are starting to be applied to the aged cells. Here, we provide a summary of the current knowledge about translational mechanisms considered to be commonly altered in the aged cells, including the integrated stress response-, mechanistic target of Rapamycin- and elongation factor 2 kinase-mediated pathways. We enlist and discuss findings of the recent works that use broad profiling-type approaches to investigate the age-related translational pathways. We outline the limitations of the methods and the remaining unknowns in the established ageing-associated translation mechanisms, and flag translational mechanisms with high prospective importance in ageing, for future studies.
    Keywords:  RNA; ageing; protein biosynthesis; ribosome; translation; translational control