Palmitoylation of ketogenic enzyme HMGCS2 enhances its interaction with PPARalpha and transcription at the Hmgcs2 PPRE.
ABSTRACT: Excessive liver production of ketone bodies is one of many metabolic complications that can arise from diabetes, and in severe untreated cases, it can result in ketoacidosis, coma, and death. Mitochondrial HMG-CoA synthase (HMGCS2), the rate-limiting enzyme in ketogenesis, has been shown to interact with PPARalpha and act as a coactivator to up-regulate transcription from the PPRE of its own gene. Although protein palmitoylation is typically a cytosolic process that promotes membrane association, we recently identified 21 palmitoylated proteins in rat liver mitochondria, including HMGCS2. Herein, our data support a mechanism whereby palmitate is first added onto HMGCS2 active site Cys166 and then transacylated to Cys305. Palmitoylation promotes the HMGCS2/PPARalpha interaction, resulting in transcriptional activation from the Hmgcs2 PPRE. These results, together with the fact that 8 of the 21 palmitoylated mitochondrial proteins that we previously identified have nuclear receptor interacting motifs, demonstrate a novel--and perhaps ubiquitous--role for palmitoylation as a modulator of transcription.
Project description:The Wnt/β-catenin pathway plays a crucial role in development and renewal of the intestinal epithelium. Mitochondrial 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA synthase 2 (HMGCS2), a rate-limiting ketogenic enzyme in the synthesis of ketone body β-hydroxybutyrate (βHB), contributes to the regulation of intestinal cell differentiation. Here, we have shown that HMGCS2 is a novel target of Wnt/β-catenin/PPARγ signaling in intestinal epithelial cancer cell lines and normal intestinal organoids. Inhibition of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway resulted in increased protein and mRNA expression of HMGCS2 and βHB production in human colon cancer cell lines LS174T and Caco2. In addition, Wnt inhibition increased expression of PPARγ and its target genes, FABP2 and PLIN2, in these cells. Conversely, activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling decreased protein and mRNA levels of HMGCS2, βHB production, and expression of PPARγ and its target genes in LS174T and Caco2 cells and mouse intestinal organoids. Moreover, inhibition of PPARγ reduced HMGCS2 expression and βHB production, while activation of PPARγ increased HMGCS2 expression and βHB synthesis. Furthermore, PPARγ bound the promoter of HMGCS2 and this binding was enhanced by β-catenin knockdown. Finally, we showed that HMGCS2 inhibited, while Wnt/β-catenin stimulated, glycolysis, which contributed to regulation of intestinal cell differentiation. Our results identified HMGCS2 as a downstream target of Wnt/β-catenin/PPARγ signaling in intestinal epithelial cells. Moreover, our findings suggest that Wnt/β-catenin/PPARγ signaling regulates intestinal cell differentiation, at least in part, through regulation of ketogenesis.
Project description:Disorders/differences of sex development (DSD) cause profound psychological and reproductive consequences for the affected individuals, however, most are still unexplained at the molecular level. Here, we present a novel gene, 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A synthase 2 (HMGCS2), encoding a metabolic enzyme in the liver important for energy production from fatty acids, that shows an unusual expression pattern in developing fetal mouse gonads. Shortly after gonadal sex determination it is up-regulated in the developing testes following a very similar spatial and temporal pattern as the male-determining gene Sry in Sertoli cells before switching to ovarian enriched expression. To test if Hmgcs2 is important for gonad development in mammals, we pursued two lines of investigations. Firstly, we generated Hmgcs2-null mice using CRISPR/Cas9 and found that these mice had gonads that developed normally even on a sensitized background. Secondly, we screened 46,XY DSD patients with gonadal dysgenesis and identified two unrelated patients with a deletion and a deleterious missense variant in HMGCS2 respectively. However, both variants were heterozygous, suggesting that HMGCS2 might not be the causative gene. Analysis of a larger number of patients in the future might shed more light into the possible association of HMGCS2 with human gonadal development.
Project description:Diabetes increases the risk of Cardio-vascular disease (CVD). CVD is more prevalent in type 2 diabetes (T2D) than type 1 diabetes (T1D), but the mortality risk is higher in T1D than in T2D. The pathophysiology of CVD in T1D is poorly defined. To learn more about biological pathways that are potentially involved in T1D with cardiac dysfunction, we sought to identify differentially expressed genes in the T1D heart. Our study used T1D mice with severe hyperglycemia along with significant deficits in echocardiographic measurements. Microarray analysis of heart tissue RNA revealed that the T1D mice differentially expressed 10 genes compared to control. Using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), we showed that these genes were significantly involved in ketogenesis, cardiovascular disease, apoptosis and other toxicology functions. Of these 10 genes, the 3-Hydroxy-3-Methylglutaryl-CoA Synthase 2 (HMGCS2) was the highest upregulated gene in T1D heart. IPA analysis showed that HMGCS2 was center to many biological networks and pathways. Our data also suggested that apart from heart, the expression of HMGCS2 was also different in kidney and spleen between control and STZ treated mice. In conclusion, The HMGCS2 molecule may potentially be involved in T1D induced cardiac dysfunction.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Studies in mice have shown that PPARalpha is an important regulator of hepatic lipid metabolism and the acute phase response. However, little information is available on the role of PPARalpha in human liver. Here we set out to compare the function of PPARalpha in mouse and human hepatocytes via analysis of target gene regulation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Primary hepatocytes from 6 human and 6 mouse donors were treated with PPARalpha agonist Wy14643 and gene expression profiling was performed using Affymetrix GeneChips followed by a systems biology analysis. Baseline PPARalpha expression was similar in human and mouse hepatocytes. Depending on species and time of exposure, Wy14643 significantly induced the expression of 362-672 genes. Surprisingly minor overlap was observed between the Wy14643-regulated genes from mouse and human, although more substantial overlap was observed at the pathway level. Xenobiotics metabolism and apolipoprotein synthesis were specifically regulated by PPARalpha in human hepatocytes, whereas glycolysis-gluconeogenesis was regulated specifically in mouse hepatocytes. Most of the genes commonly regulated in mouse and human were involved in lipid metabolism and many represented known PPARalpha targets, including CPT1A, HMGCS2, FABP1, ACSL1, and ADFP. Several genes were identified that were specifically induced by PPARalpha in human (MBL2, ALAS1, CYP1A1, TSKU) or mouse (Fbp2, lgals4, Cd36, Ucp2, Pxmp4). Furthermore, several putative novel PPARalpha targets were identified that were commonly regulated in both species, including CREB3L3, KLF10, KLF11 and MAP3K8. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results suggest that PPARalpha activation has a major impact on gene regulation in human hepatocytes. Importantly, the role of PPARalpha as master regulator of hepatic lipid metabolism is generally well-conserved between mouse and human. Overall, however, PPARalpha regulates a mostly divergent set of genes in mouse and human hepatocytes.
Project description:Palmitoylation involves the reversible posttranslational addition of palmitate to cysteines and promotes membrane binding and subcellular localization. Recent advancements in the detection and identification of palmitoylated proteins have led to multiple palmitoylation proteomics studies but these datasets are contained within large supplemental tables, making downstream analysis and data mining time-consuming and difficult. Consequently, we curated the data from 15 palmitoylation proteomics studies into one compendium containing 1,838 genes encoding palmitoylated proteins; representing approximately 10% of the genome. Enrichment analysis revealed highly significant enrichments for Gene Ontology biological processes, pathway maps, and process networks related to the nervous system. Strikingly, 41% of synaptic genes encode a palmitoylated protein in the compendium. The top disease associations included cancers and diseases and disorders of the nervous system, with Schizophrenia, HD, and pancreatic ductal carcinoma among the top five, suggesting that aberrant palmitoylation may play a pivotal role in the balance of cell death and survival. This compendium provides a much-needed resource for cell biologists and the palmitoylation field, providing new perspectives for cancer and neurodegeneration.
Project description:Disruption of lipid and carbohydrate homeostasis is an important factor in the development of prevalent metabolic diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and atherosclerosis. Therefore, small molecules that could reduce insulin dependence and regulate dyslipidemia could have a dramatic effect on public health. The grapefruit flavonoid naringenin has been shown to normalize lipids in diabetes and hypercholesterolemia, as well as inhibit the production of HCV. Here, we demonstrate that naringenin regulates the activity of nuclear receptors PPARalpha, PPARgamma, and LXRalpha. We show it activates the ligand-binding domain of both PPARalpha and PPARgamma, while inhibiting LXRalpha in GAL4-fusion reporters. Using TR-FRET, we show that naringenin is a partial agonist of LXRalpha, inhibiting its association with Trap220 co-activator in the presence of TO901317. In addition, naringenin induces the expression of PPARalpha co-activator, PGC1alpha. The flavonoid activates PPAR response element (PPRE) while suppressing LXRalpha response element (LXRE) in human hepatocytes, translating into the induction of PPAR-regulated fatty acid oxidation genes such as CYP4A11, ACOX, UCP1 and ApoAI, and inhibition of LXRalpha-regulated lipogenesis genes, such as FAS, ABCA1, ABCG1, and HMGR. This effect results in the induction of a fasted-like state in primary rat hepatocytes in which fatty acid oxidation increases, while cholesterol and bile acid production decreases. Our findings explain the myriad effects of naringenin and support its continued clinical development. Of note, this is the first description of a non-toxic, naturally occurring LXRalpha inhibitor.
Project description:The expression of several genes involved in fatty acid metabolism is regulated by peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs). To gain more insight into the control of carnitine palmitoyltransferase (CPT) gene expression, we examined the transcriptional regulation of the human CPT II gene. We show that the 5'-flanking region of this gene is transcriptionally active and binds PPARalpha in vivo in a chromatin immunoprecipitation assay. In addition, we characterized the peroxisome proliferator-responsive element (PPRE) in the proximal promoter of the CPT II gene, which appears to be a novel PPRE. The sequence of this PPRE contains one half-site which is a perfect consensus sequence (TGACCT) but no clearly recognizable second half-site (CAGCAC); this part of the sequence contains only one match to the consensus, which seems to be irrelevant for the binding of PPARalpha. As expected, other members of the nuclear receptor superfamily also bind to this element and repress the activation mediated by PPARalpha, thus showing that the interplay between several nuclear receptors may regulate the entry of fatty acids into the mitochondria, a crucial step in their metabolism.
Project description:Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common primary malignant tumor worldwide; however, the traditional therapeutic approaches and survival rates are still limited. To improve current therapies, it is necessary to investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying liver cancer and to identify potential therapeutic targets. The aims of this study were to verify the mechanisms and therapeutic potential of the ketogenesis rate-limiting enzyme 3-Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA synthase 2 (HMGCS2) in HCC. Immunohistochemical staining of human liver disease tissue arrays showed that HMGCS2 is abundantly expressed in normal liver tissues but is downregulated in cirrhosis and HCC tissues. In HCC patients, lower HMGCS2 expression was correlated with higher pathological grades and clinical stages. In our investigation of the molecular mechanisms of HMGCS2 in HCC, we showed that knockdown of HMGCS2 decreased ketone production, which promoted cell proliferation, cell migration, and xenograft tumorigenesis by enhancing c-Myc/cyclinD1 and EMT signaling and by suppressing the caspase-dependent apoptosis pathway. Ketone body treatment reduced the proliferation- and migration-promoting effects of HMGCS2 knockdown in cells. In contrast, HMGCS2 overexpression increased the intracellular ketone level and inhibited cell proliferation, cell migration, and xenograft tumorigenesis. Finally, ketogenic diet administration significantly inhibited liver cancer cell growth in mice. Our studies highlight the potential therapeutic strategy of targeting HMGCS2-mediated ketogenesis in liver cancer.
Project description:The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha (PPARalpha, or NR1C1) is a nuclear hormone receptor activated by a structurally diverse array of synthetic chemicals known as peroxisome proliferators. Endogenous activation of PPARalpha in liver has also been observed in certain gene knockout mouse models of lipid metabolism, implying the existence of enzymes that either generate (synthesize) or degrade endogenous PPARalpha agonists. For example, substrates involved in fatty acid oxidation can function as PPARalpha ligands. PPARalpha serves as a xenobiotic and lipid sensor to regulate energy combustion, hepatic steatosis, lipoprotein synthesis, inflammation and liver cancer. Mainly, PPARalpha modulates the activities of all three fatty acid oxidation systems, namely mitochondrial and peroxisomal beta-oxidation and microsomal omega-oxidation, and thus plays a key role in energy expenditure. Sustained activation of PPARalpha by either exogenous or endogenous agonists leads to the development of hepatocellular carcinoma resulting from sustained oxidative and possibly endoplasmic reticulum stress and liver cell proliferation. PPARalpha requires transcription coactivator PPAR-binding protein (PBP)/mediator subunit 1(MED1) for its transcriptional activity.
Project description:Despite a series of attempts during the last decades, the prognosis of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) remains poor. Different responses of individual tumors encouraged us to look for valuable prognostic markers. As a key regulator controlling the anabolic ketogenic pathway, 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA synthase 2 (HMGCS2) has been reported to play a crucial role in colorectal cancer and prostate cancer. However, its importance to ESCC has not been verified. Therefore, a large cohort retrospective study was planned, to investigate the relationship between HMGCS2 expression and ESCC prognosis. By adopting real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and immunohistochemical (IHC) staining, HMGCS2 expression was examined in tissues of 300 ESCC patients with complete resection. Besides, the association between HMGCS2 protein expression and survival time was evaluated through chi-square test and Kaplan-Meier analysis. With the use of Cox-proportional hazards model, the prognostic impact of clinicopathologic variables and biomarker expression was evaluated. Compared with their non-tumor counterparts, HMGCS2 downregulation occurred in 65.5% and 37.6% of primary ESCCs on the mRNA and protein levels (P<0.001), respectively. On the protein level, HMGCS2 expression was associated with tumor cell differentiation (P=0.003), pT status (P=0.006), and TNM stage (P=0.010). In the down-HMGCS2 expression group, the 5-year overall survival (OS) and relapse-free survival (RFS) are poorer than those in the normal expression group (19 months vs 24 months, P=0.002; 13 months vs 17 months, P=0.007, respectively). According to the TNM stage, stratified analysis revealed that its discernibility on RFS was only pronounced in patients with advanced clinical stage (P=0.001). In addition, multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that HMGCS2 expression was an independent risk factor for RFS (P=0.032) instead of OS (P=0.099). The findings of this study provided the evidence that HMGSC2 represented a potential novel prognostic biomarker for ESCC patients.