bims-mepmim Biomed News
on Metabolites in pathological microenvironments and immunometabolism
Issue of 2022‒06‒26
35 papers selected by
Erika Mariana Palmieri
NIH/NCI Laboratory of Cancer ImmunoMetabolism

  1. Trends Cancer. 2022 Jun 22. pii: S2405-8033(22)00128-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      Radiation is frequently administered for cancer treatment, but resistance or remission remains common. Cancer cells alter their metabolism after radiotherapy to reduce its cytotoxic effects. The influence of altered cancer metabolism extends to the tumor microenvironment (TME), where components of the TME exchange metabolites to support tumor growth. Combining radiotherapy with metabolic targets in the TME can improve therapy response. We review the metabolic rewiring of cancer cells following radiotherapy and put these observations in the context of the TME to describe the metabolic hallmarks of radiotherapy in the TME.
    Keywords:  DNA repair; fatty acid metabolism; metabolic reprogramming; radioresistance; redox metabolism; tumor microenvironment
  2. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Jun 15. pii: 6653. [Epub ahead of print]23(12):
      Leukemia is one of the most common primary malignancies of the hematologic system in both children and adults and remains a largely incurable or relapsing disease. The elucidation of disease subtypes based on mutational profiling has not improved clinical outcomes. IDH1/2 are critical enzymes of the TCA cycle that produces α-ketoglutarate (αKG). However, their mutated version is well reported in various cancer types, including leukemia, which produces D-2 hydroxyglutarate (D-2HG), an oncometabolite. Recently, some studies have shown that wild-type IDH1 is highly expressed in non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC), primary glioblastomas (GBM), and several hematological malignancies and is correlated with disease progression. This work shows that the treatment of wild-type IDH1 leukemia cells with a specific IDH1 inhibitor shifted leukemic cells toward glycolysis from the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) phenotype. We also noticed a reduction in αKG in treated cells, possibly suggesting the inhibition of IDH1 enzymatic activity. Furthermore, we found that IDH1 inhibition reduced the metabolites related to one-carbon metabolism, which is essential for maintaining global methylation in leukemic cells. Finally, we observed that metabolic alteration in IDH1 inhibitor-treated leukemic cells promoted reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation and the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, leading to apoptosis in leukemic cells. We showed that targeting wild-type IDH1 leukemic cells promotes metabolic alterations that can be exploited for combination therapies for a better outcome.
    Keywords:  OXPHOS; glutamine metabolism; metabolomics; reactive oxygen species; wild-type IDH1
  3. Biomedicines. 2022 Jun 09. pii: 1359. [Epub ahead of print]10(6):
      The oncometabolite 2-hydroxyglutarate (2-HG) plays a key role in differentiation blockade and metabolic reprogramming of cancer cells. Approximatively 20-30% of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cases carry mutations in the isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) enzymes, leading to a reduction in the Krebs cycle intermediate α-ketoglutarate (α-KG) to 2-HG. Relapse and chemoresistance of AML blasts following initial good response to standard therapy account for the very poor outcome of this pathology, which represents a great challenge for hematologists. The decrease of 2-HG levels through pharmacological inhibition of mutated IDH enzymes induces the differentiation of AML blasts and sensitizes leukemic cells to several anticancer drugs. In this review, we provide an overview of the main genetic mutations in AML, with a focus on IDH mutants and the role of 2-HG in AML pathogenesis. Moreover, we discuss the impact of high levels of 2-HG on the response of AML cells to antileukemic therapies and recent evidence for highly efficient combinations of mutant IDH inhibitors with other drugs for the management of relapsed/refractory (R/R) AML.
    Keywords:  2-HG; AML; diagnosis; therapy
  4. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2022 Jun 28. 119(26): e2123247119
      Mitochondria, a highly metabolically active organelle, have been shown to play an essential role in regulating innate immune function. Mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake via the mitochondrial Ca2+ uniporter (MCU) is an essential process regulating mitochondrial metabolism by targeting key enzymes involved in the tricarboxylic acid cycle (TCA). Accumulative evidence suggests MCU-dependent mitochondrial Ca2+ signaling may bridge the metabolic reprogramming and regulation of immune cell function. However, the mechanism by which MCU regulates inflammation and its related disease remains elusive. Here we report a critical role of MCU in promoting phagocytosis-dependent activation of NLRP3 (nucleotide-binding domain, leucine-rich repeat containing family, pyrin domain-containing 3) inflammasome by inhibiting phagolysosomal membrane repair. Myeloid deletion of MCU (McuΔmye) resulted in an attenuated phagolysosomal rupture, leading to decreased caspase-1 cleavage and interleukin (IL)-1β release, in response to silica or alum challenge. In contrast, other inflammasome agonists such as adenosine triphosphate (ATP), nigericin, poly(dA:dT), and flagellin induced normal IL-1β release in McuΔmye macrophages. Mechanistically, we demonstrated that decreased NLRP3 inflammasome activation in McuΔmye macrophages was caused by improved phagolysosomal membrane repair mediated by ESCRT (endosomal sorting complex required for transport)-III complex. Furthermore, McuΔmye mice showed a pronounced decrease in immune cell recruitment and IL-1β production in alum-induced peritonitis, a typical IL-1-dependent inflammation model. In sum, our results identify a function of MCU in promoting phagocytosis-dependent NLRP3 inflammatory response via an ESCRT-mediated phagolysosomal membrane repair mechanism.
    Keywords:  ESCRT; MCU; inflammasome; phagosome
  5. Cancers (Basel). 2022 Jun 16. pii: 2983. [Epub ahead of print]14(12):
      Despite the development of metabolism-based therapy for a variety of malignancies, resistance to single-agent treatment is common due to the metabolic plasticity of cancer cells. Improved understanding of how malignant cells rewire metabolic pathways can guide the rational selection of combination therapy to circumvent drug resistance. Here, we show that human T-ALL cells shift their metabolism from oxidative decarboxylation to reductive carboxylation when the TCA cycle is disrupted. The α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex (KGDHC) in the TCA cycle regulates oxidative decarboxylation by converting α-ketoglutarate (α-KG) to succinyl-CoA, while isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) 1 and 2 govern reductive carboxylation. Metabolomics flux analysis of T-ALL reveals enhanced reductive carboxylation upon genetic depletion of the E2 subunit of KGDHC, dihydrolipoamide-succinyl transferase (DLST), mimicking pharmacological inhibition of the complex. Mechanistically, KGDHC dysfunction causes increased demethylation of nuclear DNA by α-KG-dependent dioxygenases (e.g., TET demethylases), leading to increased production of both IDH1 and 2. Consequently, dual pharmacologic inhibition of the TCA cycle and TET demethylases demonstrates additive efficacy in reducing the tumor burden in zebrafish xenografts. These findings provide mechanistic insights into how T-ALL develops resistance to drugs targeting the TCA cycle and therapeutic strategies to overcome this resistance.
    Keywords:  DNA demethylation; T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia; TCA cycle; oxidative phosphorylation; reductive carboxylation; α-ketoglutarate
  6. Nat Metab. 2022 Jun 23.
      Production of oxidized biomass, which requires regeneration of the cofactor NAD+, can be a proliferation bottleneck that is influenced by environmental conditions. However, a comprehensive quantitative understanding of metabolic processes that may be affected by NAD+ deficiency is currently missing. Here, we show that de novo lipid biosynthesis can impose a substantial NAD+ consumption cost in proliferating cancer cells. When electron acceptors are limited, environmental lipids become crucial for proliferation because NAD+ is required to generate precursors for fatty acid biosynthesis. We find that both oxidative and even net reductive pathways for lipogenic citrate synthesis are gated by reactions that depend on NAD+ availability. We also show that access to acetate can relieve lipid auxotrophy by bypassing the NAD+ consuming reactions. Gene expression analysis demonstrates that lipid biosynthesis strongly anti-correlates with expression of hypoxia markers across tumor types. Overall, our results define a requirement for oxidative metabolism to support biosynthetic reactions and provide a mechanistic explanation for cancer cell dependence on lipid uptake in electron acceptor-limited conditions, such as hypoxia.
  7. Metabolites. 2022 Jun 17. pii: 556. [Epub ahead of print]12(6):
      The transcription factor Krüppel-like factor 10 (Klf10), also known as Tieg1 for TGFβ (Inducible Early Gene-1) is known to control numerous genes in many cell types that are involved in various key biological processes (differentiation, proliferation, apoptosis, inflammation), including cell metabolism and human disease. In skeletal muscle, particularly in the soleus, deletion of the Klf10 gene (Klf10 KO) resulted in ultrastructure fiber disorganization and mitochondrial metabolism deficiencies, characterized by muscular hypertrophy. To determine the metabolic profile related to loss of Klf10 expression, we analyzed blood and soleus tissue using UHPLC-Mass Spectrometry. Metabolomics analyses on both serum and soleus revealed profound differences between wild-type (WT) and KO animals. Klf10 deficient mice exhibited alterations in metabolites associated with energetic metabolism. Additionally, chemical classes of aromatic and amino-acid compounds were disrupted, together with Krebs cycle intermediates, lipids and phospholipids. From variable importance in projection (VIP) analyses, the Warburg effect, citric acid cycle, gluconeogenesis and transfer of acetyl groups into mitochondria appeared to be possible pathways involved in the metabolic alterations observed in Klf10 KO mice. These studies have revealed essential roles for Klf10 in regulating multiple metabolic pathways whose alterations may underlie the observed skeletal muscle defects as well as other diseases.
    Keywords:  Klf10; UHPLC-MS; Warburg effect; metabolic pathways; metabolomics; mice; serum; soleus
  8. Nat Metab. 2022 Jun 20.
      Angiogenesis, the process by which endothelial cells (ECs) form new blood vessels from existing ones, is intimately linked to the tissue's metabolic milieu and often occurs at nutrient-deficient sites. However, ECs rely on sufficient metabolic resources to support growth and proliferation. How endothelial nutrient acquisition and usage are regulated is unknown. Here we show that these processes are instructed by Yes-associated protein 1 (YAP)/WW domain-containing transcription regulator 1 (WWTR1/TAZ)-transcriptional enhanced associate domain (TEAD): a transcriptional module whose function is highly responsive to changes in the tissue environment. ECs lacking YAP/TAZ or their transcriptional partners, TEAD1, 2 and 4 fail to divide, resulting in stunted vascular growth in mice. Conversely, activation of TAZ, the more abundant paralogue in ECs, boosts proliferation, leading to vascular hyperplasia. We find that YAP/TAZ promote angiogenesis by fuelling nutrient-dependent mTORC1 signalling. By orchestrating the transcription of a repertoire of cell-surface transporters, including the large neutral amino acid transporter SLC7A5, YAP/TAZ-TEAD stimulate the import of amino acids and other essential nutrients, thereby enabling mTORC1 activation. Dissociating mTORC1 from these nutrient inputs-elicited by the loss of Rag GTPases-inhibits mTORC1 activity and prevents YAP/TAZ-dependent vascular growth. Together, these findings define a pivotal role for YAP/TAZ-TEAD in controlling endothelial mTORC1 and illustrate the essentiality of coordinated nutrient fluxes in the vasculature.
  9. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2022 Jun 28. 119(26): e2121987119
      Mechanisms of defense against ferroptosis (an iron-dependent form of cell death induced by lipid peroxidation) in cellular organelles remain poorly understood, hindering our ability to target ferroptosis in disease treatment. In this study, metabolomic analyses revealed that treatment of cancer cells with glutathione peroxidase 4 (GPX4) inhibitors results in intracellular glycerol-3-phosphate (G3P) depletion. We further showed that supplementation of cancer cells with G3P attenuates ferroptosis induced by GPX4 inhibitors in a G3P dehydrogenase 2 (GPD2)-dependent manner; GPD2 deletion sensitizes cancer cells to GPX4 inhibition-induced mitochondrial lipid peroxidation and ferroptosis, and combined deletion of GPX4 and GPD2 synergistically suppresses tumor growth by inducing ferroptosis in vivo. Mechanistically, inner mitochondrial membrane-localized GPD2 couples G3P oxidation with ubiquinone reduction to ubiquinol, which acts as a radical-trapping antioxidant to suppress ferroptosis in mitochondria. Taken together, these results reveal that GPD2 participates in ferroptosis defense in mitochondria by generating ubiquinol.
    Keywords:  GPD2; cell death; ferroptosis; lipid peroxidation; mitochondria
  10. ACS Nano. 2022 Jun 23.
      Nitric oxide (NO) has many important biological functions; however, it has been a long-standing challenge to utilize the exogenous NO donor itself in the activation of macrophages for cancer immunotherapy. Herein, we report the synthesis of a nanoparticle-based NO delivery platform with a rational design for effective NO delivery and macrophage activation. S-Nitrosothiol (SNO) modified organosilica nanoparticles with a tetrasulfide-containing composition produced a higher level of intracellular NO than their bare silica counterparts in macrophages. Enhanced intracellular delivery of NO resulted in mitochondrial dysfunction and disruption of the tricarboxylic acid cycle, leading to macrophage activation and delayed tumor growth. This study provides insights on intracellularly delivered NO for regulating the polarization of macrophages and cancer immunotherapy.
    Keywords:  immunotherapy; macrophage; nanoparticles; nitric oxide; organosilica
  11. Nat Metab. 2022 Jun 20.
      Stress-adaptive mechanisms enable tumour cells to overcome metabolic constraints under nutrient and oxygen shortage. Aspartate is an endogenous metabolic limitation under hypoxic conditions, but the nature of the adaptive mechanisms that contribute to aspartate availability and hypoxic tumour growth are poorly understood. Here we identify GOT2-catalysed mitochondrial aspartate synthesis as an essential metabolic dependency for the proliferation of pancreatic tumour cells under hypoxic culture conditions. In contrast, GOT2-catalysed aspartate synthesis is dispensable for pancreatic tumour formation in vivo. The dependence of pancreatic tumour cells on aspartate synthesis is bypassed in part by a hypoxia-induced potentiation of extracellular protein scavenging via macropinocytosis. This effect is mutant KRAS dependent, and is mediated by hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF1A) and its canonical target carbonic anhydrase-9 (CA9). Our findings reveal high plasticity of aspartate metabolism and define an adaptive regulatory role for macropinocytosis by which mutant KRAS tumours can overcome nutrient deprivation under hypoxic conditions.
  12. Nat Metab. 2022 Jun 23.
      Tissue macrophages (Mϕ) are essential effector cells in rheumatoid arthritis (RA), contributing to autoimmune tissue inflammation through diverse effector functions. Their arthritogenic potential depends on their proficiency to survive in the glucose-depleted environment of the inflamed joint. Here, we identify a mechanism that links metabolic adaptation to nutrient stress with the efficacy of tissue Mϕ to activate adaptive immunity by presenting antigen to tissue-invading T cells. Specifically, Mϕ populating the rheumatoid joint produce and respond to the small cytokine CCL18, which protects against cell death induced by glucose withdrawal. Mechanistically, CCL18 induces the transcription factor RFX5 that selectively upregulates glutamate dehydrogenase 1 (GLUD1), thus enabling glutamate utilization to support energy production. In parallel, RFX5 enhances surface expression of HLA-DR molecules, promoting Mϕ-dependent expansion of antigen-specific T cells. These data place CCL18 at the top of a RFX5-GLUD1 survival pathway and couple adaptability to nutrient conditions in the tissue environment to antigen-presenting function in autoimmune tissue inflammation.
  13. FEBS J. 2022 Jun 22.
      Bacterial infections of the gut are one of the major causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. The interplay between the pathogen and the host is finely balanced, with the bacteria evolving to proliferate and establish infection. In contrast, the host mounts a response to first restrict and then eliminate the infection. The intestine is a rapidly proliferating tissue, and metabolism is tuned to cater to the demands of proliferation and differentiation along the crypt-villus axis (CVA) in the gut. As bacterial pathogens encounter the intestinal epithelium, they elicit changes in the host cell, and core metabolic pathways such as the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, lipid metabolism, and glycolysis are affected. This review highlights the mechanisms utilized by diverse gut bacterial pathogens to subvert host metabolism and describes host responses to the infection.
    Keywords:  gut pathogen; infection; intestinal epithelial cell; metabolism
  14. Cell Biochem Biophys. 2022 Jun 23.
      Cholesterol efflux is the first and rate-limiting step of reverse cholesterol transport (RCT) from peripheric cells to the liver. The involvement of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) in RCT determines the atheroprotective properties of HDL. Cholesterol efflux from different membrane pools includes both passive and energy-dependent processes. The first type of route consists of cholesterol desorption from the cell membrane into the unstirred layer adjacent to the cell surface and diffusion in the water phase. Moreover, the selective uptake and facilitated diffusion of cholesterol and cholesteryl ester molecules through the hydrophobic tunnel in the scavenger receptor BI molecule does not require energy consumption. The second type of route includes active cholesterol export by the ATP-binding cassette transporters A1 (ABCA1) and G1 (ABCG1). Several cholesterol acceptors specifically bind cholesterol and phospholipid molecules, and cholesterol binding to the albumin molecule, which acts as a shuttle, significantly increases cholesterol movement between acceptors and red blood cells, thus functioning as a sink for cholesterol. Cholesterol and phospholipid molecules effluxed from macrophages by ABCA1 are accepted exclusively by the lipid-free apolipoprotein apoA-I, which is the major protein moiety of HDL, whereas those effluxed by ABCG1 are accepted by HDL. ABCA1- and ABCG1-mediated cholesterol transport, together with cholesterol diffusion, largely determine cholesterol turnover at the physiological level of intracellular cholesterol. However, at cholesterol overload, ABCA1-mediated efflux prevails over other routes. The exchange of apoA-I between lipid-free and lipid-associated states and the synergism of nascent and mature HDL contribute to cholesterol efflux efficiency. Moreover, extracellular cholesterol deposits and microvesicles may be involved in RCT.
    Keywords:  ABCA1; ABCG1; Cholesterol; Cholesterol efflux; HDL kinetic stability; HDL mass and charge heterogeneity; SR-BI; apoA-I
  15. Vaccines (Basel). 2022 Jun 14. pii: 943. [Epub ahead of print]10(6):
      Tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs) represent a key component of the tumor microenvironment and are generally associated with immunosuppression and poor prognosis. TREM2 is a transmembrane receptor of the immunoglobulin superfamily expressed in myeloid cells. TREM2 has been extensively studied in microglia and neurodegenerative diseases and recently emerged as a marker of pro-tumorigenic macrophages. The accumulation of TREM2-expressing TAMs was reported across numerous cancer patients and tumor models. TREM2 genetic blockade or TREM2 targeting with antibodies resulted in improved tumor control, enhanced response to anti-PD1, and significant changes in the tumor immune landscape. Preclinical studies paved the way for an ongoing clinical trial with a TREM2 depleting antibody and inspired further exploration of TREM2 targeting therapies. Here, we review the current knowledge about the impact of TREM2 in cancer, with an emphasis on the TREM2+ macrophage signature across different cancer types, the contribution of TREM2 to TAM phenotype and function, and the promising effects of TREM2 modulation.
    Keywords:  TREM2; cancer; immunotherapy; tumor-associated macrophages
  16. Genes (Basel). 2022 Jun 07. pii: 1025. [Epub ahead of print]13(6):
      Despite two decades of paraganglioma-pheochromocytoma research, the fundamental question of how the different succinate dehydrogenase (SDH)-related tumor phenotypes are initiated has remained unanswered. Here, we discuss two possible scenarios by which missense (hypomorphic alleles) or truncating (null alleles) SDH gene variants determine clinical phenotype. Dysfunctional SDH is a major source of reactive oxygen species (ROS) but ROS are inhibited by rising succinate levels. In scenario 1, we propose that SDH missense variants disrupt electron flow, causing elevated ROS levels that are toxic in sympathetic PPGL precursor cells but well controlled in oxygen-sensing parasympathetic paraganglion cells. We also suggest that SDHAF2 variants, solely associated with HNPGL, may cause the reversal of succinate dehydrogenase to fumarate reductase, producing very high ROS levels. In scenario 2, we propose a modified succinate threshold model of tumor initiation. Truncating SDH variants cause high succinate accumulation and likely initiate tumorigenesis via disruption of 2-oxoglutarate-dependent enzymes in both PPGL and HNPGL precursor tissues. We propose that missense variants (including SDHAF2) cause lower succinate accumulation and thus initiate tumorigenesis only in very metabolically active tissues such as parasympathetic paraganglia, which naturally show very high levels of succinate.
    Keywords:  head and neck paraganglioma; neuroendocrine tumor; pheochromocytoma; reactive oxygen species; succinate dehydrogenase
  17. Nat Commun. 2022 Jun 21. 13(1): 3544
      Immunometabolism contributes to inflammation, but how activated macrophages acquire extracellular nutrients to fuel inflammation is largely unknown. Here, we show that the plasma membrane potential (Vm) of macrophages mediated by Kir2.1, an inwardly-rectifying K+ channel, is an important determinant of nutrient acquisition and subsequent metabolic reprogramming promoting inflammation. In the absence of Kir2.1 activity, depolarized macrophage Vm lead to a caloric restriction state by limiting nutrient uptake and concomitant adaptations in nutrient conservation inducing autophagy, AMPK (Adenosine 5'-monophosphate-activated protein kinase), and GCN2 (General control nonderepressible 2), which subsequently depletes epigenetic substrates feeding histone methylation at loci of a cluster of metabolism-responsive inflammatory genes, thereby suppressing their transcription. Kir2.1-mediated Vm supports nutrient uptake by facilitating cell-surface retention of nutrient transporters such as 4F2hc and GLUT1 by its modulation of plasma membrane phospholipid dynamics. Pharmacological targeting of Kir2.1 alleviated inflammation triggered by LPS or bacterial infection in a sepsis model and sterile inflammation in human samples. These findings identify an ionic control of macrophage activation and advance our understanding of the immunomodulatory properties of Vm that links nutrient inputs to inflammatory diseases.
  18. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Jun 15. pii: 6697. [Epub ahead of print]23(12):
      Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) for KRAS, in which a wild-type KRAS allele is progressively lost, promotes invasive and migratory abilities of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) cells and tissues. Moreover, the occurrence of KrasG12D-LOH activates nonclassical glutamine metabolism, which is related to the malignant behavior of PDAC cells. Herein, we aim to demonstrate the regulatory link between hypoxia-inducible factor-2α (HIF-2α) and glutamine metabolism that mediates malignant phenotypes in KrasG12D-LOH PDAC cells. HIF-2α-shRNA knockdown lentivirus transfection and metabolite analysis were performed in KrasG12D-LOH and KrasG12D cell lines, respectively. Cell proliferation, migration, and invasion were examined using Cell Counting Kit-8, colony formation, and Transwell assays. Cell cycle phase and apoptosis were determined using flow cytometry. Western blotting and real-time quantitative PCR were also performed. Additionally, a subcutaneous xenograft mouse model was established. LOH stimulated HIF-2α activity and transactivated c-Myc, which has a central regulatory effect on glutamine metabolism independent of hypoxia. Meanwhile, HIF-2α silencing repressed KrasG12D-LOH PDAC cell proliferation, invasion, and migration. HIF-2α knockdown inhibited glutamine uptake and GOT1 expression via a c-Myc-dependent pathway. Collectively, KrasG12D-LOH can activate HIF-2α to regulate c-Myc-mediated glutamine metabolism and promote malignant phenotypes. Moreover, targeting HIF-2α-c-Myc regulated nonclassical glutamine metabolism, providing a new therapeutic perspective for KrasG12D-LOH PDAC.
    Keywords:  HIF-2α; KrasG12D; c-Myc; glutamine metabolism; loss of heterozygosity
  19. Trends Mol Med. 2022 Jun 16. pii: S1471-4914(22)00154-X. [Epub ahead of print]
      Genetic or pharmacological inhibition of enzymes involved in GTP biosynthesis has substantial biological effects, underlining the need to better understand the function of GTP levels in regulation of cellular processes and the significance of targeting GTP biosynthesis enzymes for therapeutic intervention. Our current understanding of spatiotemporal regulation of GTP metabolism and its role in physiological and pathological cellular processes is far from complete. Novel methodologies such as genetically encoded sensors of free GTP offered insights into intracellular distribution and function of GTP molecules. In the current Review, we provide analysis of recent discoveries in the field of GTP metabolism and evaluate the key enzymes as molecular targets.
    Keywords:  GTP; biosynthesis; cancer; metabolism; signal transduction
  20. Cell Rep. 2022 Jun 21. pii: S2211-1247(22)00772-0. [Epub ahead of print]39(12): 110986
      Regulatory T (Treg) cells play a vital role in maintaining the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment. Lactate is a crucial metabolite in cancer and is related to tumor prognosis, metastasis, and overall survival. In this study, we focus on the effects of lactate on Treg cells. In vitro, lactate improves Treg cell stability and function, whereas lactate degradation reduces Treg cell induction, increases antitumor immunity, and decreases tumor growth in mice. Mechanistically, lactate modulates Treg cell generation through lactylation of Lys72 in MOESIN, which improves MOESIN interaction with transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) receptor I and downstream SMAD3 signaling. Cotreatment with anti-PD-1 and a lactate dehydrogenase inhibitor has a stronger antitumor effect than anti-PD-1 alone. Individuals with hepatocellular carcinoma who responded to anti-PD-1 treatment have lower levels of MOESIN lactylation in Treg cells than nonresponding individuals. Thus, we identify lactate as an essential small molecule that reinforces Treg cells in the tumor microenvironment through lactylation.
    Keywords:  CP: Cancer; CP: Immunology; Liver cancer; MOESIN; PD-1 therapy; TGF-β; Treg cells; lactate; lactylation; tumor microenvironment
  21. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Jun 10. pii: 6502. [Epub ahead of print]23(12):
      Liver macrophages serve important roles in iron homeostasis through phagocytosis of effete erythrocytes and the export of iron into the circulation. Conversely, intracellular iron can alter macrophage phenotype. Aging increases hepatic macrophage number and nonparenchymal iron, yet it is unknown whether age-related iron accumulation alters macrophage number or phenotype. To evaluate macrophages in a physiological model of iron loading that mimicked biological aging, young (6 mo) Fischer 344 rats were given one injection of iron dextran (15 mg/kg), and macrophage number and phenotype were evaluated via immunohistochemistry. A separate group of old (24 mo) rats was treated with 200 mg/kg deferoxamine every 12 h for 4 days. Iron administration to young rats resulted in iron concentrations that matched the values and pattern of tissue iron deposition observed in aged animals; however, iron did not alter macrophage number or phenotype. Aging resulted in significantly greater numbers of M1 (CD68+) and M2 (CD163+) macrophages in the liver, but neither macrophage number nor phenotype were affected by deferoxamine. Double-staining experiments demonstrated that both M1 (iNOS+) and M2 (CD163+) macrophages contained hemosiderin, suggesting that macrophages of both phenotypes stored iron. These results also suggest that age-related conditions other than iron excess are responsible for the accumulation of hepatic macrophages with aging.
    Keywords:  aging; deferoxamine; hemosiderosis; macrophage polarization
  22. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2022 Jun 21.
      Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry imaging (MALDI-MSI) is a rapidly growing method in the life sciences. However, for many analyte classes, its sensitivity is limited due to poor ionization efficiencies. To mitigate this problem, we here introduce a novel postionization scheme based on single-photon induced chemical ionization using pulsed RF-Kr lamps. The fine-vacuum conditions of a dual ion-funnel ion source effectively thermalize the evolving MALDI plume and enable ample gas-phase reactions. Injected chemical dopants crucially support fragment-less ionization to [M+H] + /[M-H] - species. Based on this interplay, numerous glycerophospho-, sphingo-, and further lipids, registered from mammalian tissue sections, were boosted by up to three orders of magnitude, similar to results obtained with laser-based postionization (MALDI-2). Experiments with deuterated matrix and dopant, however, indicated complex chemical ionization pathways different from MALDI-2.
    Keywords:  Analytical methods; MALDI MS Imaging; Postionization; lipidomics; mass spectrometry
  23. IUBMB Life. 2022 Jun 22.
      S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM) is a coenzyme and the most commonly used methyl-group donor for the modification of metabolites, DNA, RNA and proteins. SAM biosynthesis and SAM regeneration from the methylation reaction product S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine (SAH) take place in the cytoplasm. Therefore, the intramitochondrial SAM-dependent methyltransferases require the import of SAM and export of SAH for recycling. Orthologous mitochondrial transporters belonging to the mitochondrial carrier family have been identified to catalyze this antiport transport step: Sam5p in yeast, SLC25A26 (SAMC) in humans, and SAMC1-2 in plants. In mitochondria SAM is used by a vast number of enzymes implicated in the following processes: the regulation of replication, transcription, translation, and enzymatic activities; the maturation and assembly of mitochondrial tRNAs, ribosomes and protein complexes; and the biosynthesis of cofactors, such as ubiquinone, lipoate, and molybdopterin. Mutations in SLC25A26 and mitochondrial SAM-dependent enzymes have been found to cause human diseases, which emphasizes the physiological importance of these proteins.
    Keywords:  S-adenosyl-L-methionine; diseases; metabolism; methyltransferase; mitochondria; mitochondrial carrier; mitochondrial transport
  24. Int Immunopharmacol. 2022 Jun 21. pii: S1567-5769(22)00467-2. [Epub ahead of print]110 108983
      The accumulating evidence revealed that microbiota plays a significant function in training, function, and the induction of host immunity. Once this interaction (immune system-microbiota) works correctly, it enables the production of protective responses against pathogens and keeps the regulatory pathways essential for maintaining tolerance to innocent antigens. This concept of immunity and metabolic activity redefines the realm of immunometabolism, paving the way for innovative therapeutic interventions to modulate immune cells through immune metabolic alterations. A body of evidence suggests that microbiota-derived metabolites, including short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) such as butyrate, acetate, and propionate, play a key role in immune balance. SCFAs act on many cell types to regulate various vital biological processes, including host metabolism, intestinal function, and the immune system. Such SCFAs generated by gut bacteria also impact immunity, cellular function, and immune cell fate. This is a new concept of immune metabolism, and better knowledge about how lifestyle affects intestinal immunometabolism is crucial for preventing and treating disease. In this review article, we explicitly focus on the function of SCFAs in the metabolism of immune cells, especially macrophages, neutrophils, dendritic cells (DCs), B cells, T (Th) helper cells, and cytotoxic T cells (CTLs).
    Keywords:  Immune modulation; Immunity; Immunometabolism; Microbiota; Short-chain fatty acids
  25. J Oncol. 2022 ;2022 2159794
      Tumor metabolism plays a critical role in tumor progression. However, the interaction between metabolism and tumor microenvironment (TME) has not been comprehensively revealed in colon adenocarcinoma (COAD). We used unsupervised consensus clustering to establish three molecular subtypes (clusters) based on the enrichment score of four major metabolism pathways in TCGA-COAD dataset. GSE17536 was used as a validation dataset. Single-cell RNA sequencing data (GSE161277) was employed to further verify the reliability of subtyping and characterize the correlation between metabolism and TME. Three clusters were identified and they performed distinct prognosis and molecular features. Clust3 had the worst overall survival and the highest enrichment score of glycolysis. 86 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified, in which 11 DEGs were associated with favorable prognosis and 75 DEGs were associated with poor prognosis. Striking correlations were observed between hypoxia and glycolysis, clust3 and hypoxia, and clust3 and angiogenesis (P < 0.001).We constructed a molecular subtyping system which was effective and reliable for predicting COAD prognosis. The 86 identified key DEGs may be greatly involved in COAD progression, and they provide new perspectives and directions for further understanding the mechanism of metabolism in promoting aggressive phenotype by interacting with TME.
  26. Free Radic Biol Med. 2022 Jun 16. pii: S0891-5849(22)00452-X. [Epub ahead of print]188 92-102
      The rates of formation of superoxide and hydrogen peroxide at different electron-donating sites in isolated mitochondria are critically dependent on the substrates that are added, through their effects on the reduction level of each site and the components of the protonmotive force. However, in intact cells the acute effects of added substrates on different sites of cytosolic and mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide production are unclear. Here we tested the effects of substrate addition on cytosolic and mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide release from intact AML12 liver cells. In 30-min starved cells replete with endogenous substrates, addition of glucose, fructose, palmitate, alanine, leucine or glutamine had no effect on the rate or origin of cellular hydrogen peroxide release. However, following 150-min starvation of the cells to deplete endogenous glycogen (and other substrates), cellular hydrogen peroxide production, particularly from NADPH oxidases (NOXs), was decreased, GSH/GSSH ratio increased, and antioxidant gene expression was unchanged. Addition of glucose or glutamine (but not the other substrates) increased hydrogen peroxide release. There were similar relative increases from each of the three major sites of production: mitochondrial sites IQ and IIIQo, and cytosolic NOXs. Glucose supplementation also restored ATP production and mitochondrial NAD reduction level, suggesting that the increased rates of hydrogen peroxide release from the mitochondrial sites were driven by increases in the protonmotive force and the degree of reduction of the electron transport chain. Long-term (24 h) glucose or glutamine deprivation also diminished hydrogen peroxide release rate, ATP production rate and (for glucose deprivation) NAD reduction level. We conclude that the rates of superoxide and hydrogen peroxide production from mitochondrial sites in liver cells are insensitive to extra added substrates when endogenous substrates are not depleted, but these rates are decreased when endogenous substrates are lowered by 150 min of starvation, and can be enhanced by restoring glucose or glutamine supply through improvements in mitochondrial energetic state.
    Keywords:  Liver; Mitochondria; NOX; ROS; Site III(Qo); Site IQ
  27. Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2022 Jun 20. pii: S0958-1669(22)00073-8. [Epub ahead of print]76 102739
      Biochemical characterization of metabolism provides molecular insights for understanding biology in health and disease. Over the past decades, metabolic perturbations have been implicated in cancer, neurodegeneration, and diabetes, among others. Isotope tracing is a technique that allows tracking of labeled atoms within metabolites through biochemical reactions. This technique has become an integral component of the contemporary metabolic research. Isotope tracing measures substrate contribution to downstream metabolites and indicates its utilization in cellular metabolic networks. In addition, isotopic labeling data are necessary for quantitative metabolic flux analysis. Here, we review recent work utilizing metabolic tracing to study health and disease, and highlight its application to interrogate subcellular, intercellular, and in vivo metabolism. We further discuss the current challenges and opportunities to expand the utility of isotope tracing to new research areas.
  28. Ann Transl Med. 2022 May;10(10): 595
      Background: Cancer-associated metabolic reprogramming promotes cancer cell differentiation, growth, and influences the tumor immune microenvironment (TIME) to promote hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) progression. However, the clinical significance of metabolism-related lncRNA remains largely unexplored.Methods: Based on The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) Liver hepatocellular carcinoma (LIHC) dataset, we identified characteristic prognostic long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) and construct metabolism-related lncRNA prognostic signature for HCC. Gender, age, grade, stage and TP53 status were used as covariates were used to assess the prognostic capacity of the characteristic lncRNA signature. Subsequently, the molecular and immune characteristics and drug sensitivity in metabolism-related lncRNA signature defined subgroups were analyzed.
    Results: We identified 34 metabolism-related lncRNAs significantly associated with the prognosis of HCC (P<0.05). Subsequently, we constructed a multigene signature based on 9 characteristics prognostic lncRNAs and classified HCC patients into high- and low-risk groups based on cutoff values. We found the lncRNA signature [hazard ratio (HR) =3.55 (2.44-5.15), P<0.001] to be significantly associated with survival. The receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) curves area under the curve (AUC) values for 1-, 3-, and 5-year survival were 0.811, 0.773, and 0.753, respectively. In univariate and multivariate Cox regression analyses, prognostic characteristic lncRNAs were the most crucial prognostic factor besides the stage. The prognostic signature was subsequently validated in the test set. In addition, Gene Ontology (GO), Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG), and gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) analyses revealed potential biological features and signaling pathways associated with the prognostic signature. We constructed a nomogram including risk groups and clinical parameters (age, gender, grade, and stage). Calibration plots and decision curve analysis (DCA) showed that our nomogram had a good predictive performance. Finally, we found reduced expression of immune-activated cells in the high-risk group.
    Conclusions: The metabolism-related lncRNA signature is a promising biomarker to distinguish the prognosis and an immune characteristic in HCC.
    Keywords:  Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC); The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA); cancer-related metabolic reprogramming; long non-coding RNA (lncRNA); tumor immune microenvironment (TIME)
  29. Sci Rep. 2022 Jun 22. 12(1): 10533
      Enzyme specificity in lipid metabolic pathways often remains unresolved at the lipid species level, which is needed to link lipidomic molecular phenotypes with their protein counterparts to construct functional pathway maps. We created lipidomic profiles of 23 gene knockouts in a proof-of-concept study based on a CRISPR/Cas9 knockout screen in mammalian cells. This results in a lipidomic resource across 24 lipid classes. We highlight lipid species phenotypes of multiple knockout cell lines compared to a control, created by targeting the human safe-harbor locus AAVS1 using up to 1228 lipid species and subspecies, charting lipid metabolism at the molecular level. Lipid species changes are found in all knockout cell lines, however, some are most apparent on the lipid class level (e.g., SGMS1 and CEPT1), while others are most apparent on the fatty acid level (e.g., DECR2 and ACOT7). We find lipidomic phenotypes to be reproducible across different clones of the same knockout and we observed similar phenotypes when two enzymes that catalyze subsequent steps of the long-chain fatty acid elongation cycle were targeted.
  30. Sci Adv. 2022 Jun 24. 8(25): eabo0097
      Methionine and cysteine metabolisms are important for the survival and pathogenesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb). The transsulfuration pathway converts methionine to cysteine and represents an important link between antioxidant and methylation metabolism in diverse organisms. Using a combination of biochemistry and cryo-electron microscopy, we characterized the first enzyme of the transsulfuration pathway, cystathionine β-synthase (MtbCbs) in Mtb. We demonstrated that MtbCbs is a heme-less, pyridoxal-5'-phosphate-containing enzyme, allosterically activated by S-adenosylmethionine (SAM). The atomic model of MtbCbs in its native and SAM-bound conformations revealed a unique mode of SAM-dependent allosteric activation. Further, SAM stabilized MtbCbs by sterically occluding proteasomal degradation, which was crucial for supporting methionine and redox metabolism in Mtb. Genetic deficiency of MtbCbs reduced Mtb survival upon homocysteine overload in vitro, inside macrophages, and in mice coinfected with HIV. Thus, the MtbCbs-SAM axis constitutes an important mechanism of coordinating sulfur metabolism in Mtb.
  31. Med Sci (Basel). 2022 Jun 10. pii: 31. [Epub ahead of print]10(2):
      Polyamine biosynthesis is frequently dysregulated in cancers, and enhanced flux increases intracellular polyamines necessary for promoting cell growth, proliferation, and function. Polyamine depletion strategies demonstrate efficacy in reducing tumor growth and increasing survival in animal models of cancer; however, mechanistically, the cell-intrinsic and cell-extrinsic alterations within the tumor microenvironment underlying positive treatment outcomes are not well understood. Recently, investigators have demonstrated that co-targeting polyamine biosynthesis and transport alters the immune landscape. Although the polyamine synthesis-targeting drug 2-difluoromethylornithine (DFMO) is well tolerated in humans and is FDA-approved for African trypanosomiasis, its clinical benefit in treating established cancers has not yet been fully realized; however, combination therapies targeting compensatory mechanisms have shown tolerability and efficacy in animal models and are currently being tested in clinical trials. As demonstrated in pre-clinical models, polyamine blocking therapy (PBT) reduces immunosuppression in the tumor microenvironment and enhances the therapeutic efficacy of immune checkpoint blockade (ICB). Thus, DFMO may sensitize tumors to other therapeutics, including immunotherapies and chemotherapies.
    Keywords:  cancer therapeutic; difluoromethylornithine; immune regulation; macrophage polarization; polyamine blocking therapy; polyamines; tumor microenvironment
  32. Cancer Sci. 2022 Jun 20.
      Lactate accumulation in tumor microenvironment was shown closely related to tumor growth and immune escape, and suppression of lactate production by inhibiting lactate dehydrogenase (LDHA) has been pursued as a potential novel antitumor strategy, while only a few potent LDHA inhibitors were developed and most of them did not demonstrate potent anti-tumor effect in vivo. To this end, we designed new LDHA inhibitors and obtained a novel potent LDHA inhibitor, ML-05, which inhibited cellular lactate production and inhibited tumor cell proliferation, which associated with the inhibition on ATP production and induction of reactive oxygen species and G1 phase arrest. In mouse B16F10 melanoma model, intratumoral injection with ML-05 significantly reduced lactate production and inhibited tumor growth and released anti-tumor immune response of T cell subsets (Th1, GMZB+ CD8T) in the tumor microenvironment. Moreover, ML-05 treatment combined with PD-1 antibody or stimulator of interferon genes protein (STING) could sensitize the anti-tumor activity for both of them in B16F10 melanoma model. Collectively, we developed a novel potent LDHA inhibitor and demonstrated profound antitumor activity by local administration, which was associated with the activation of antitumor immunity, besides it could sensitize immunotherapies which suggested a great translational value.
    Keywords:  Immunity; LDHA inhibitor; Lactate; Metabolic reprogramming; Tumor microenvironment
  33. J Leukoc Biol. 2022 Jun 21.
      Mycobacterium tuberculosis has developed diverse mechanisms to survive inside phagocytic cells, such as macrophages. Phagocytosis is a key process in eliminating invading pathogens; thus, M. tuberculosis efficiently disrupts phagosome maturation to ensure infection. However, inflammatory cytokines produced by macrophages in response to early M. tuberculosis infection are key to promoting bacterial clarification. IFN-γ enhances M. tuberculosis engulfment and destruction by reprogramming macrophages from phagocytosis to macropinocytosis. Here, we show that the transcription factor Krüppel-like factor 10 (Klf10) plays a positive role in M. tuberculosis survival and infection by negatively modulating IFN-γ levels. Naïve Klf10-deficient macrophages produce more IFN-γ upon stimulation than wild-type macrophages, thus enhancing bacterial uptake and bactericidal activity achieved by macropinocytosis. Moreover, Klf10⁻/ ⁻ macrophages showed cytoplasmic distribution of coronin 1 correlated with increased pseudopod count and length. In agreement with these observations, Klf10⁻/ ⁻ mice showed improved bacterial clearance from the lungs and increased viability. Altogether, our data indicate that Klf10 plays a critical role in M. tuberculosis survival by preventing macrophage reprogramming from phagocytosis to macropinocytosis by negatively regulating IFN-γ production upon macrophage infection.
    Keywords:  Interferon gamma; KLF10; Macrophage; Macropinocytosis; Tuberculosis
  34. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Jun 20. pii: 6873. [Epub ahead of print]23(12):
      Alterations in mitochondrial function are an important control variable in the progression of metabolic dysfunction-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD), while also noted by increased de novo lipogenesis (DNL) and hepatic insulin resistance. We hypothesized that the organization and function of a mitochondrial electron transport chain (ETC) in this pathologic condition is a consequence of shifted substrate availability. We addressed this question using a transgenic mouse model with increased hepatic insulin resistance and DNL due to constitutively active human SREBP-1c. The abundance of ETC complex subunits and components of key metabolic pathways are regulated in the liver of these animals. Further omics approaches combined with functional assays in isolated liver mitochondria and primary hepatocytes revealed that the SREBP-1c-forced fatty liver induced a substrate limitation for oxidative phosphorylation, inducing enhanced complex II activity. The observed increased expression of mitochondrial genes may have indicated a counteraction. In conclusion, a shift of available substrates directed toward activated DNL results in increased electron flows, mainly through complex II, to compensate for the increased energy demand of the cell. The reorganization of key compounds in energy metabolism observed in the SREBP-1c animal model might explain the initial increase in mitochondrial function observed in the early stages of human MAFLD.
    Keywords:  fatty liver; hepatic metabolism; mitochondria; substrate; subunit
  35. Oncogene. 2022 Jun 23.
      Metabolic reprogramming has been shown to be involved in cancer-induced pre-metastatic niche (PMN) formation, but the underlying mechanisms have been insufficiently explored. Here, we showed that hydroxyacid oxidase 1 (HAO1), a rate-limiting enzyme of oxalate synthesis, was upregulated in the alveolar epithelial cells of mice bearing metastatic breast cancer cells at the pre-metastatic stage, leading to oxalate accumulation in lung tissue. Lung oxalate accumulation induced neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation by activating NADPH oxidase, which facilitated the formation of pre-metastatic niche. In addition, lung oxalate accumulation promoted the proliferation of metastatic cancer cells by activating the MAPK signaling pathway. Pharmacologic inhibition of HAO1 could effectively suppress the lung oxalate accumulation induced by primary cancer, consequently dampening lung metastasis of breast cancer. Breast cancer cells induced HAO1 expression and oxalate accumulation in alveolar epithelial cells by activating TLR3-IRF3 signaling. Collectively, these findings underscore the role of HAO1-mediated oxalate metabolism in cancer-induced lung PMN formation and metastasis. HAO1 could be an appealing therapeutic target for preventing lung metastasis of cancer.