bims-meprid Biomed News
on Metabolic-dependent epigenetic reprogramming in differentiation and disease
Issue of 2022‒08‒14
three papers selected by
Alessandro Carrer
Veneto Institute of Molecular Medicine

  1. Front Pharmacol. 2022 ;13 935536
      Cancer cells undergo metabolic adaptations to sustain their growth and proliferation under several stress conditions thereby displaying metabolic plasticity. Epigenetic modification is known to occur at the DNA, histone, and RNA level, which can alter chromatin state. For almost a century, our focus in cancer biology is dominated by oncogenic mutations. Until recently, the connection between metabolism and epigenetics in a reciprocal manner was spotlighted. Explicitly, several metabolites serve as substrates and co-factors of epigenetic enzymes to carry out post-translational modifications of DNA and histone. Genetic mutations in metabolic enzymes facilitate the production of oncometabolites that ultimately impact epigenetics. Numerous evidences also indicate epigenome is sensitive to cancer metabolism. Conversely, epigenetic dysfunction is certified to alter metabolic enzymes leading to tumorigenesis. Further, the bidirectional relationship between epigenetics and metabolism can impact directly and indirectly on immune microenvironment, which might create a new avenue for drug discovery. Here we summarize the effects of metabolism reprogramming on epigenetic modification, and vice versa; and the latest advances in targeting metabolism-epigenetic crosstalk. We also discuss the principles linking cancer metabolism, epigenetics and immunity, and seek optimal immunotherapy-based combinations.
    Keywords:  cancer metabolism; epigenetics; immunity; novel anti-cancer strategy; oncology
  2. Mol Cell. 2022 Aug 09. pii: S1097-2765(22)00647-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      Lactate accumulates to a significant amount in glioblastomas (GBMs), the most common primary malignant brain tumor with an unfavorable prognosis. However, it remains unclear whether lactate is metabolized by GBMs. Here, we demonstrated that lactate rescued patient-derived xenograft (PDX) GBM cells from nutrient-deprivation-mediated cell death. Transcriptome analysis, ATAC-seq, and ChIP-seq showed that lactate entertained a signature of oxidative energy metabolism. LC/MS analysis demonstrated that U-13C-lactate elicited substantial labeling of TCA-cycle metabolites, acetyl-CoA, and histone protein acetyl-residues in GBM cells. Lactate enhanced chromatin accessibility and histone acetylation in a manner dependent on oxidative energy metabolism and the ATP-citrate lyase (ACLY). Utilizing orthotopic PDX models of GBM, a combined tracer experiment unraveled that lactate carbons were substantially labeling the TCA-cycle metabolites. Finally, pharmacological blockage of oxidative energy metabolism extended overall survival in two orthotopic PDX models in mice. These results establish lactate metabolism as a novel druggable pathway for GBM.
    Keywords:  ATAC-seq; ChIP-seq; glioblastoma; lactate; metabolic flux analysis; tumor metabolism