DNA unwinding by ASCC3 helicase is coupled to ALKBH3-dependent DNA alkylation repair and cancer cell proliferation.
ABSTRACT: Demethylation by the AlkB dioxygenases represents an important mechanism for repair of N-alkylated nucleotides. However, little is known about their functions in mammalian cells. We report the purification of the ALKBH3 complex and demonstrate its association with the activating signal cointegrator complex (ASCC). ALKBH3 is overexpressed in various cancers, and both ALKBH3 and ASCC are important for alkylation damage resistance in these tumor cell lines. ASCC3, the largest subunit of ASCC, encodes a 3'-5' DNA helicase, whose activity is crucial for the generation of single-stranded DNA upon which ALKBH3 preferentially functions for dealkylation. In cell lines that are dependent on ALKBH3 and ASCC3 for alkylation damage resistance, loss of ALKBH3 or ASCC3 leads to increased 3-methylcytosine and reduced cell proliferation, which correlates with pH2A.X and 53BP1 foci formation. Our data provide a molecular mechanism by which ALKBH3 collaborates with ASCC to maintain genomic integrity in a cell-type specific manner.
Project description:Multiple DNA damage response (DDR) pathways have evolved to sense the presence of damage and recruit the proper repair factors. We recently reported a signaling pathway induced upon alkylation damage to recruit the AlkB homolog 3, α-ketoglutarate-dependent dioxygenase (ALKBH3)-activating signal cointegrator 1 complex subunit 3 (ASCC3) dealkylase-helicase repair complex. As in other DDR pathways, the recruitment of these repair factors is mediated through a ubiquitin-dependent mechanism. However, the machinery that coordinates the proper assembly of this repair complex and controls its recruitment is still poorly defined. Here, we demonstrate that the ASCC1 accessory subunit is important for the regulation of ASCC complex function. ASCC1 interacts with the ASCC complex through the ASCC3 helicase subunit. We find that ASCC1 is present at nuclear speckle foci prior to damage, but leaves the foci in response to alkylation. Strikingly, ASCC1 loss significantly increases ASCC3 foci formation during alkylation damage, yet most of these foci lack ASCC2. These results suggest that ASCC1 coordinates the proper recruitment of the ASCC complex during alkylation, a function that appears to depend on a putative RNA-binding motif near the ASCC1 C terminus. Consistent with its role in alkylation damage signaling and repair, ASCC1 knockout through a CRISPR/Cas9 approach results in alkylation damage sensitivity in a manner epistatic with ASCC3. Together, our results identify a critical regulator of the ALKBH3-ASCC alkylation damage signaling pathway and suggest a potential role for RNA-interacting domains in the alkylation damage response.
Project description:The ASCC3 subunit of the activating signal co-integrator complex is a dual-cassette Ski2-like nucleic acid helicase that provides single-stranded DNA for alkylation damage repair by the ?-ketoglutarate-dependent dioxygenase AlkBH3. Other ASCC components integrate ASCC3/AlkBH3 into a complex DNA repair pathway. We mapped and structurally analyzed interacting ASCC2 and ASCC3 regions. The ASCC3 fragment comprises a central helical domain and terminal, extended arms that clasp the compact ASCC2 unit. ASCC2-ASCC3 interfaces are evolutionarily highly conserved and comprise a large number of residues affected by somatic cancer mutations. We quantified contributions of protein regions to the ASCC2-ASCC3 interaction, observing that changes found in cancers lead to reduced ASCC2-ASCC3 affinity. Functional dissection of ASCC3 revealed similar organization and regulation as in the spliceosomal RNA helicase Brr2. Our results delineate functional regions in an important DNA repair complex and suggest possible molecular disease principles.
Project description:DNA repair of alkylation damage is defective in various cancers. This occurs through somatically acquired inactivation of the MGMT gene in various cancer types, including breast cancers. In addition to MGMT, the two E. coli AlkB homologs ALKBH2 and ALKBH3 have also been linked to direct reversal of alkylation damage. However, it is currently unknown whether ALKBH2 or ALKBH3 are found inactivated in cancer.Methylome datasets (GSE52865, GSE20713, GSE69914), available through Omnibus, were used to determine whether ALKBH2 or ALKBH3 are found inactivated by CpG promoter methylation. TCGA dataset enabled us to then assess the impact of CpG promoter methylation on mRNA expression for both ALKBH2 and ALKBH3. DNA methylation analysis for the ALKBH3 promoter region was carried out by pyrosequencing (PyroMark Q24) in 265 primary breast tumours and 30 proximal normal breast tissue samples along with 8 breast-derived cell lines. ALKBH3 mRNA and protein expression were analysed in cell lines using RT-PCR and Western blotting, respectively. DNA alkylation damage assay was carried out in cell lines based on immunofluorescence and confocal imaging. Data on clinical parameters and survival outcomes in patients were obtained and assessed in relation to ALKBH3 promoter methylation.The ALKBH3 gene, but not ALKBH2, undergoes CpG promoter methylation and transcriptional silencing in breast cancer. We developed a quantitative alkylation DNA damage assay based on immunofluorescence and confocal imaging revealing higher levels of alkylation damage in association with epigenetic inactivation of the ALKBH3 gene (P = 0.029). In our cohort of 265 primary breast cancer, we found 72 cases showing aberrantly high CpG promoter methylation over the ALKBH3 promoter (27%; 72 out of 265). We further show that increasingly higher degree of ALKBH3 promoter methylation is associated with reduced breast-cancer specific survival times in patients. In this analysis, ALKBH3 promoter methylation at >20% CpG methylation was found to be statistically significantly associated with reduced survival (HR = 2.3; P = 0.012). By thresholding at the clinically relevant CpG methylation level (>20%), we find the incidence of ALKBH3 promoter methylation to be 5% (13 out of 265).ALKBH3 is a novel addition to the catalogue of DNA repair genes found inactivated in breast cancer. Our results underscore a link between defective alkylation repair and breast cancer which, additionally, is found in association with poor disease outcome.
Project description:Human AlkB homolog 3 (ALKBH3), a homolog of the Escherichia coli protein AlkB, demethylates 1-methyladenine and 3-methylcytosine (3-meC) in single-stranded DNA and RNA by oxidative demethylation. Immunohistochemical analyses on clinical cancer specimens and knockdown experiments using RNA interference in vitro and in vivo indicate that ALKBH3 is a promising molecular target for the treatment of prostate, pancreatic, and non-small cell lung cancer. Therefore, an inhibitor for ALKBH3 demethylase is expected to be a first-in-class molecular-targeted drug for cancer treatment. Here, we report the development of a novel, quantitative real-time PCR-based assay for ALKBH3 demethylase activity against 3-meC by highly active recombinant ALKBH3 protein using a silkworm expression system. This assay enables us to screen for inhibitors of ALKBH3 demethylase, which may result in the development of a novel molecular-targeted drug for cancer therapy.
Project description:Ribosome stalling triggers the ribosome-associated quality control (RQC) pathway, which targets collided ribosomes and leads to subunit dissociation, followed by proteasomal degradation of the nascent peptide. In yeast, RQC is triggered by Hel2-dependent ubiquitination of uS10, followed by subunit dissociation mediated by the RQC-trigger (RQT) complex. In mammals, ZNF598-dependent ubiquitination of collided ribosomes is required for RQC, and activating signal cointegrator 3 (ASCC3), a component of the ASCC complex, facilitates RQC. However, the roles of other components and associated factors of the ASCC complex remain unknown. Here, we demonstrate that the human RQC-trigger (hRQT) complex, an ortholog of the yeast RQT complex, plays crucial roles in RQC. The hRQT complex is composed of ASCC3, ASCC2, and TRIP4, which are orthologs of the RNA helicase Slh1(Rqt2), ubiquitin-binding protein Cue3(Rqt3), and zinc-finger type protein yKR023W(Rqt4), respectively. The ATPase activity of ASCC3 and the ubiquitin-binding activity of ASCC2 are crucial for triggering RQC. Given the proposed function of the RQT complex in yeast, we propose that the hRQT complex recognizes the ubiquitinated stalled ribosome and induces subunit dissociation to facilitate RQC.
Project description:The integrity of our DNA is challenged daily by a variety of chemicals that cause DNA base alkylation. DNA alkylation repair is an essential cellular defence mechanism to prevent the cytotoxicity or mutagenesis from DNA alkylating chemicals. Human oxidative demethylase ALKBH3 is a central component of alkylation repair, especially from single-stranded DNA. However, the molecular mechanism of ALKBH3-mediated damage recognition and repair is less understood. We report that ALKBH3 has a direct protein-protein interaction with human RAD51 paralogue RAD51C. We also provide evidence that RAD51C-ALKBH3 interaction stimulates ALKBH3-mediated repair of methyl-adduct located within 3'-tailed DNA, which serves as a substrate for the RAD51 recombinase. We further show that the lack of RAD51C-ALKBH3 interaction affects ALKBH3 function in vitro and in vivo. Our data provide a molecular mechanism underlying upstream events of alkyl adduct recognition and repair by ALKBH3.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The oxidative DNA demethylase ALKBH3 targets single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) in order to perform DNA alkylation damage repair. ALKBH3 becomes upregulated during tumorigenesis and is necessary for proliferation. However, the underlying molecular mechanism remains to be understood. METHODS: To further elucidate the function of ALKBH3 in cancer, we performed ChIP-seq to investigate the genomic binding pattern of endogenous ALKBH3 in PC3 prostate cancer cells coupled with microarray experiments to examine the expression effects of ALKBH3 depletion. RESULTS: We demonstrate that ALKBH3 binds to transcription associated locations, such as places of promoter-proximal paused RNA polymerase II and enhancers. Strikingly, ALKBH3 strongly binds to the transcription initiation sites of a small number of highly active gene promoters. These promoters are characterized by high levels of transcriptional regulators, including transcription factors, the Mediator complex, cohesin, histone modifiers, and active histone marks. Gene expression analysis showed that ALKBH3 does not directly influence the transcription of its target genes, but its depletion induces an upregulation of ALKBH3 non-bound inflammatory genes. CONCLUSIONS: The genomic binding pattern of ALKBH3 revealed a putative novel hyperactive promoter type. Further, we propose that ALKBH3 is an intrinsic DNA repair protein that suppresses transcription associated DNA damage at highly expressed genes and thereby plays a role to maintain genomic integrity in ALKBH3-overexpressing cancer cells. These results raise the possibility that ALKBH3 may be a potential target for inhibiting cancer progression.
Project description:Alkylating agents modify DNA and RNA forming adducts that disrupt replication and transcription, trigger cell cycle checkpoints and/or initiate apoptosis. If left unrepaired, some of the damage can be cytotoxic and/or mutagenic. In Escherichia coli, the alkylation repair protein B (AlkB) provides one form of resistance to alkylating agents by eliminating mainly 1-methyladenine and 3-methylcytosine, thereby increasing survival and preventing mutation. To examine the biological role of the mammalian AlkB homologs Alkbh2 and Alkbh3, which both have similar enzymatic activities to that of AlkB, we evaluated the survival and mutagenesis of primary Big Blue mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) that had targeted deletions in the Alkbh2 or Alkbh3 genes. Both Alkbh2- and Alkbh3-deficient MEFs were ?2-fold more sensitive to methyl methanesulfonate (MMS) induced cytotoxicity compared to the wild type control cells. Spontaneous mutant frequencies were similar for the wild type, Alkbh2-/- and Alkbh3-/- MEFs (average--1.3×10(-5)). However, despite the similar survival of the two mutant MEFs after MMS treatment, only the Alkbh2-deficient MEFs showed a statistically significant increase in mutant frequency compared to wild type MEFs after MMS treatment. Therefore, although both Alkbh2 and Alkbh3 can protect against MMS-induced cell death, only Alkbh2 shows statistically significant protection of MEF DNA against mutations following treatment with this exogenous methylating agent.
Project description:5-Methylcytosine (5mC) in DNA CpG islands is an important epigenetic biomarker for mammalian gene regulation. It is oxidized to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC), 5-formylcytosine (5fC), and 5-carboxylcytosine (5caC) by the ten-eleven translocation (TET) family enzymes, which are ?-ketoglutarate (?-KG)/Fe(II)-dependent dioxygenases. In this work, we demonstrate that the epigenetic marker 5mC is modified to 5hmC, 5fC, and 5caC in vitro by another class of ?-KG/Fe(II)-dependent proteins-the DNA repair enzymes in the AlkB family, which include ALKBH2, ALKBH3 in huamn and AlkB in Escherichia coli. Theoretical calculations indicate that these enzymes may bind 5mC in the syn-conformation, placing the methyl group comparable to 3-methylcytosine, the prototypic substrate of AlkB. This is the first demonstration of the AlkB proteins to oxidize a methyl group attached to carbon, instead of nitrogen, on a DNA base. These observations suggest a broader role in epigenetics for these DNA repair proteins.
Project description:Background: The oxidative DNA demethylase ALKBH3 targets single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) in order to perform DNA alkylation damage repair. ALKBH3 becomes up-regulated during tumorigenesis and is necessary for proliferation. However, the underlying molecular mechanism remains to be understood. Methods: To further elucidate the function of ALKBH3 in cancer, we performed ChIP-seq to investigate the genomic binding pattern of endogenous ALKBH3 in PC3 prostate cancer cells coupled with microarray experiments to examine the expression effects of ALKBH3 depletion. Results: We demonstrate that ALKBH3 binds to transcription associated locations, such as places of promoter-proximal paused RNA polymerase II and enhancers. Strikingly, ALKBH3 strongly binds to the transcription initiation sites of a small number of highly active gene promoters. These promoters are characterized by high levels of transcriptional regulators, including transcription factors, the Mediator complex, cohesin, histone modifiers and active histone marks. Gene expression analysis showed that ALKBH3 does not directly influence the transcription of its target genes, but its depletion induces an up-regulation of ALKBH3 non-bound inflammatory genes. Conclusions: The genomic binding pattern of ALKBH3 revealed a putative novel hyperactive promoter type. Further, we propose that ALKBH3 is an intrinsic DNA repair protein that suppresses transcription associated DNA damage at highly expressed genes and thereby plays a role to maintain genomic integrity in ALKBH3-overexpressing cancer cells. These results raise the possibility that ALKBH3 may be a potential target for inhibiting cancer progression. PC3 cells were infected with ALKBH3 shRNA or Control shRNA for 48 hours and selected with puromycine. Cells were collected after 48h or 96h past selection.