Structural basis for negative cooperativity within agonist-bound TR:RXR heterodimers.
ABSTRACT: Thyroid hormones such as 3,3',5 triiodo-L-thyronine (T3) control numerous aspects of mammalian development and metabolism. The actions of such hormones are mediated by specific thyroid hormone receptors (TRs). TR belongs to the nuclear receptor family of modular transcription factors that binds to specific DNA-response elements within target promoters. These receptors can function as homo- or heterodimers such as TR:9-cis retinoic acid receptor (RXR). Here, we present the atomic resolution structure of the TR?•T3:RXR?•9-cis retinoic acid (9c) ligand binding domain heterodimer complex at 2.95 Å along with T3 hormone binding and dissociation and coactivator binding studies. Our data provide a structural basis for allosteric communication between T3 and 9c and negative cooperativity between their binding pockets. In this structure, both TR and RXR are in the active state conformation for optimal binding to coactivator proteins. However, the structure of TR•T3 within TR•T3:RXR•9c is in a relative state of disorder, and the observed kinetics of binding show that T3 dissociates more rapidly from TR•T3:RXR•9c than from TR•T3:RXR. Also, coactivator binding studies with a steroid receptor coactivator-1 (receptor interaction domains 1-3) fragment show lower affinities (K(a)) for TR•T3:RXR•9c than TR•T3:RXR. Our study corroborates previously reported observations from cell-based and binding studies and offers a structural mechanism for the repression of TR•T3:RXR transactivation by RXR agonists. Furthermore, the recent discoveries of multiple endogenous RXR agonists that mediate physiological tasks such as lipid biosynthesis underscore the pharmacological importance of negative cooperativity in ligand binding within TR:RXR heterodimers.
Project description:Transcriptional regulation controlled by thyroid hormone receptor (TR) drives events such as development, differentiation, and metabolism. TRs may act either as homodimers or as heterodimers with retinoid X receptor (RXR). Thyroid hormone T3 preferentially binds TR-RXR heterodimers, which activate transcription through coactivator recruitment. However, it is unclear whether TR-RXR heterodimers may also be responsive to the canonical RXR agonist 9-cis retinoic acid (9C) in the context of physiological gene regulation. New structural studies suggest that 9C promotes the displacement of bound coactivators from the heterodimer, modifying TR-RXR activity. To shed light on the molecular mechanisms that control TR-RXR function, we used biophysical approaches to characterize coregulator recruitment to TR-TR or to TR-RXR in the presence of T3 and/or 9C as well as cell-based assays to establish the functional significance of biophysical findings. Using cell-based and fluorescence assays with mutant and wild-type TR, we show that 9C does indeed have a function in the TR-RXR heterodimer context, in which it induces the release of corepressors. Furthermore, we show that 9C does not promote detectable conformational changes in the structure of the TR-RXR heterodimer and does not affect coactivator recruitment. Finally, our data support the view that DNA binding domain and Hinge regions are important to set up NR-coactivator binding interfaces. In summary, we showed that the RXR agonist 9C can regulate TR function through its modulation of corepressor dissociation.
Project description:The constitutive androstane (CAR) and retinoid X receptors (RXR) are ligand-mediated transcription factors of the nuclear receptor protein superfamily. Functional CAR:RXR heterodimers recruit coactivator proteins, such as the steroid receptor coactivator-1 (SRC1). Here, we show that agonist ligands can potentiate transactivation through both coactivator binding sites on CAR:RXR, which distinctly bind two SRC1 molecules. We also observe that SRC1 transitions from a structurally plastic to a compact form upon binding CAR:RXR. Using small angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) we show that the CAR(tcp):RXR(9c)·SRC1 complex can encompass two SRC1 molecules compared with the CAR(tcp):RXR·SRC1, which binds only a single SRC1. Moreover, sedimentation coefficients and molecular weights determined by analytical ultracentrifugation confirm the SAXS model. Cell-based transcription assays show that disrupting the SRC1 binding site on RXR alters the transactivation by CAR:RXR. These data suggest a broader role for RXR within heterodimers, whereas offering multiple strategies for the assembly of the transcription complex.
Project description:Retinoid X receptors (RXRs), along with retinoic acid (RA) receptors (RARs), mediate the effects of RA on gene expression. Three subtypes of RXRs (alpha, beta, and gamma) which bind to and are activated by the 9-cis stereoisomer of RA have been characterized. They activate gene transcription by binding to specific sites on DNA as homodimers or as heterodimers with RARs and other related nuclear receptors, including the vitamin D receptor, thyroid hormone receptors (TRs), and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors. Two additional RXR subtypes (delta and epsilon) isolated from zebra fish cDNA libraries are described here; although both subtypes form DNA-binding heterodimers with RARs and TR, neither binds 9-cis RA, and both are transcriptionally inactive on RXR response elements. In cotransfection studies with TR, the delta subtype was found to function in a dominant negative manner, while the epsilon subtype had a slight stimulatory effect on thyroid hormone (T3)-dependent transcriptional activity. The discovery of these two novel receptors in zebra fish expands the functional repertoire of RXRs to include ligand-independent and dominant negative modulation of type II receptor function.
Project description:Transcription regulation by steroid hormones, vitamin derivatives, and metabolites is mediated by nuclear receptors (NRs), which play an important role in ligand-dependent gene expression and human health. NRs function as homodimers or heterodimers and are involved in a combinatorial, coordinated and sequentially orchestrated exchange between coregulators (corepressors, coactivators). The architecture of DNA-bound functional dimers positions the coregulators proteins. We previously demonstrated that retinoic acid (RAR-RXR) and vitamin D3 receptors (VDR-RXR) heterodimers recruit only one coactivator molecule asymmetrically without steric hindrance for the binding of a second cofactor. We now address the problem of homodimers for which the presence of two identical targets enhances the functional importance of the mode of binding. Using structural and biophysical methods and RAR as a model, we could dissect the molecular mechanism of coactivator recruitment to homodimers. Our study reveals an allosteric mechanism whereby binding of a coactivator promotes formation of nonsymmetrical RAR homodimers with a 21 stoichiometry. Ligand conformation and the cofactor binding site of the unbound receptor are affected through the dimer interface. A similar control mechanism is observed with estrogen receptor (ER) thus validating the negative cooperativity model for an established functional homodimer. Correlation with published data on other NRs confirms the general character of this regulatory pathway.
Project description:The promiscuous protein retinoid X receptor (RXR) displays essential allosteric regulation of several members in the nuclear hormone receptor superfamily via heterodimerization and (anti)cooperative binding of cognate ligands. Here, the structural basis of the positive allostery of RXR and constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) is revealed. In contrast, a similar computational approach had previously revealed the mechanism for negative allostery in the complex of RXR and thyroid receptor (TR). By comparing the positive and negative allostery of RXR complexed with CAR and TR respectively, we reported the promiscuous allosteric control involving RXR. We characterize the allosteric mechanism by expressing the correlated dynamics of selected residue-residue contacts which was extracted from atomistic molecular dynamics simulation and statistical analysis. While the same set of residues in the binding pocket of RXR may initiate the residue-residue interaction network, RXR uses largely different sets of contacts (only about one-third identical) and allosteric modes to regulate TR and CAR. The promiscuity of RXR control may originate from multiple factors, including (1) the frustrated fit of cognate ligand 9c to the RXR binding pocket and (2) the different ligand-binding features of TR (loose) versus CAR (tight) to their corresponding cognate ligands.
Project description:We previously reported that selective ablation of the nuclear receptors retinoid X receptor (RXR)-α and RXR-β in mouse epidermal keratinocytes (RXR-αβep-/-) or a topical application of active vitamin D3 (VD3) and/or all-trans retinoic acid (RA) on wild-type mouse skin induces a human atopic dermatitis-like phenotype that is triggered by an increased expression of the thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) proinflammatory cytokine. We demonstrate here that in epidermal keratinocytes, unliganded heterodimers of vitamin D receptor (VDR)/RXR-α and retinoic acid receptor-γ (RAR-γ)/RXR-β are bound as repressing complexes to their cognate DNA-binding sequence(s) (DBS) in the TSLP promoter regulatory region. Treatments with either an agonistic VD3 analog or RA dissociate the repressing complexes and recruit coactivator complexes and RNA polymerase II, thereby inducing transcription. Furthermore, we identified several functional NF-κB, activator protein 1 (AP1), STAT, and Smad DBS in the TSLP promoter region. Interestingly, many of these transcription factors and DBS present in the TSLP promoter region are differentially used in intestinal epithelial cell(s) (IEC). Collectively, our study reveals that, in vivo within their heterodimers, the RXR and RAR isotypes are not functionally redundant, and it also unveils the combinatorial mechanisms involved in the tissue-selective regulation of TSLP transcription in epidermal keratinocytes and IEC.
Project description:Amphibian metamorphosis serves as an excellent model to study T3 function during postembryonic development in vertebrate due to its total dependence on T3. Earlier molecular studies in the model species Xenopus laevis have led to a number of important in vivo findings on the function and mechanisms of T3 receptor (TR) action during vertebrate development. However, the lack of genomic sequence information, its tetraploid genome, and lengthy developmental cycle hinder further analyses on TR functions. In this regard, the highly related species, Xenopus tropicalis, is much more advantageous. Toward developing X. tropicalis for genome-wide and genetic studies of TR function, we analyzed the expression profiles of TRs and their heterodimerization partners, retinoid X receptors (RXRs) or 9-cis retinoic acid receptors. We show that their expression correlates with transformations in different organs and that TR/RXR heterodimers are capable of repressing and activating gene expression in vivo in the absence and presence of T3, respectively. We further demonstrate that TRs are bound to endogenous target genes in X. tropicalis tadpoles. Our results thus support a role of TRs in mediating the metamorphic effects of T3 in X. tropicalis. More importantly, the similarities in the expression and function between X. tropicalis and X. laevis TRs and RXRs as demonstrated by our study also pave the way to take advantages of existing morphological, molecular, and cellular knowledge of X. laevis development and the genetic and sequence superiority of X. tropicalis to dissect the molecular pathways governing tissue/organ-specific transformations during vertebrate postembryonic development.
Project description:Many transcription factors (TFs) have the ability to cooperate on DNA elements as heterodimers. Despite the significance of TF heterodimerization for gene regulation, a quantitative understanding of cooperativity between various TF dimer partners and its impact on heterodimer DNA binding specificity models is still lacking. Here, we used a novel integrative approach, combining microfluidics-steered measurements of dimer-DNA assembly with mechanistic modeling of the implicated protein-protein-DNA interactions to quantitatively interrogate the cooperative DNA binding behavior of the adipogenic peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor ? (PPAR?):retinoid X receptor ? (RXR?) heterodimer. Using the high throughput MITOMI (mechanically induced trapping of molecular interactions) platform, we derived equilibrium DNA binding data for PPAR?, RXR?, as well as the PPAR?:RXR? heterodimer to more than 300 target DNA sites and variants thereof. We then quantified cooperativity underlying heterodimer-DNA binding and derived an integrative heterodimer DNA binding constant. Using this cooperativity-inclusive constant, we were able to build a heterodimer-DNA binding specificity model that has superior predictive power than the one based on a regular one-site equilibrium. Our data further revealed that individual nucleotide substitutions within the target site affect the extent of cooperativity in PPAR?:RXR?-DNA binding. Our study therefore emphasizes the importance of assessing cooperativity when generating DNA binding specificity models for heterodimers.
Project description:Transcription of the gene for phosphoenolpyruvate carboxy-kinase (PEPCK) is stimulated by thyroid hormone (T3), glucagon (via cyclic AMP) and glucocorticoids. A region of the PEPCK promoter between -332 and -308 mediates the induction of transcription by T3. To characterize this region further, mutations were introduced into this region of the PEPCK promoter and the modified promoters ligated to the chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) reporter gene. Using these PEPCK-CAT vectors in transient transfections in HepG2 cells, it was found that T3 stimulates PEPCK transcription through two direct repeats of the AGGTCA motif located between nucleotides -330 and -319 [PEPCK-thyroid-hormone-responsive element (TRE)]. The beta form of the T3 receptor (TR beta) bound PEPCK-TRE as a homodimer but bound far more efficiently as a heterodimeric complex with the retinoid X receptor (RXR). An additional region called P3(I) (-250 to -234) is required for T3 responsiveness and binds members of the CCAAT-enhancer-binding protein (C/EBP) family. P3(I) contains an AGGTCA-like motif that can bind the TR beta-RXR heterodimer. Mutagenesis of this motif abolished TR beta-RXR binding without reducing T3 induction. Mutation of the C/EBP-binding site or insertion of a cyclic AMP-responsive-binding-protein site at P3(I) eliminated the T3 response. Our results indicate that T3 stimulation of PEPCK transcription is mediated by TR beta bound to PEPCK-TRE and requires C/EBP to be bound at the P3(I) site.
Project description:The thyroid (TR) and retinoid X receptors (RXR) belong to the nuclear receptor (NR) superfamily of ligand-mediated transcription factors. At the molecular level, TR activity is specifically modulated by interactions with the ligand 3,3',5 triiodo-l-thyronine (T3), RXR, DNA, and co-activators such as SRC1, occurring in concert or sequentially. Although binding sites for DNA and coregulators such as SRC1 are distinct and at distal regions of these receptors, cell-based and EMSA studies have suggested that these molecules can regulate binding of each other to the receptor. We present evidence of direct, DNA-dependent, communication between the DNA and ligand binding domains (DBD and LBD) that can allosterically regulate interactions with SRC1 and DNA, respectively, using isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) and cell-based assays. Additionally, we note that interdomain communication is affected by RXR in RXR:TR. We also noticed a DNA-dependent cross-talk between RXR and TR within RXR:TR. Finally, we suggest that differences in transactivation on different TRE may be the consequence of different affinities between TRE and RXR:TR.