Smyd3 regulates cancer cell phenotypes and catalyzes histone H4 lysine 5 methylation.
ABSTRACT: Smyd3 is a lysine methyltransferase implicated in chromatin and cancer regulation. Here we show that Smyd3 catalyzes histone H4 methylation at lysine 5 (H4K5me). This novel histone methylation mark is detected in diverse cell types and its formation is attenuated by depletion of Smyd3 protein. Further, Smyd3-driven cancer cell phenotypes require its enzymatic activity. Thus, Smyd3, via H4K5 methylation, provides a potential new link between chromatin dynamics and neoplastic disease.
Project description:SMYD3 is a SET domain-containing N-lysine methyltransferase associated with multiple cancers. Its reported substrates include histones (H3K4 and H4K5), vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 1 (VEGFR1 Lys(831)) and MAP3 kinase kinase (MAP3K2 Lys(260)). To reveal the structural basis for substrate preference and the catalytic mechanism of SMYD3, we have solved its co-crystal structures with VEGFR1 and MAP3K2 peptides. Our structural and biochemical analyses show that MAP3K2 serves as a robust substrate of SMYD3 because of the presence of a phenylalanine residue at the -2 position. A shallow hydrophobic pocket on SMYD3 accommodates the binding of the phenylalanine and promotes efficient catalytic activities of SMYD3. By contrast, SMYD3 displayed a weak activity toward a VEGFR1 peptide, and the location of the acceptor lysine in the folded kinase domain of VEGFR1 requires drastic conformational rearrangements for juxtaposition of the acceptor lysine with the enzymatic active site. Our results clearly revealed structural determinants for the substrate preference of SMYD3 and provided mechanistic insights into lysine methylation of MAP3K2. The knowledge should be useful for the development of SMYD3 inhibitors in the fight against MAP3K2 and Ras-driven cancer.
Project description:Deregulation of lysine methylation signalling has emerged as a common aetiological factor in cancer pathogenesis, with inhibitors of several histone lysine methyltransferases (KMTs) being developed as chemotherapeutics. The largely cytoplasmic KMT SMYD3 (SET and MYND domain containing protein 3) is overexpressed in numerous human tumours. However, the molecular mechanism by which SMYD3 regulates cancer pathways and its relationship to tumorigenesis in vivo are largely unknown. Here we show that methylation of MAP3K2 by SMYD3 increases MAP kinase signalling and promotes the formation of Ras-driven carcinomas. Using mouse models for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and lung adenocarcinoma, we found that abrogating SMYD3 catalytic activity inhibits tumour development in response to oncogenic Ras. We used protein array technology to identify the MAP3K2 kinase as a target of SMYD3. In cancer cell lines, SMYD3-mediated methylation of MAP3K2 at lysine 260 potentiates activation of the Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK signalling module and SMYD3 depletion synergizes with a MEK inhibitor to block Ras-driven tumorigenesis. Finally, the PP2A phosphatase complex, a key negative regulator of the MAP kinase pathway, binds to MAP3K2 and this interaction is blocked by methylation. Together, our results elucidate a new role for lysine methylation in integrating cytoplasmic kinase-signalling cascades and establish a pivotal role for SMYD3 in the regulation of oncogenic Ras signalling.
Project description:Chemical modifications of the DNA and nucleosomal histones tightly control the gene transcription program in eukaryotic cells. The "histone code" hypothesis proposes that the frequency, combination, and location of post-translational modifications (PTMs) of the core histones compose a complex network of epigenetic regulation. Currently, there are at least 23 different types and >450 histone PTMs that have been discovered, and the PTMs of lysine and arginine residues account for a crucial part of the histone code. Although significant progress has been achieved in recent years, the molecular basis for the histone code is far from being fully understood. In this study, we investigated how naturally occurring N-terminal acetylation and PTMs of histone H4 lysine-5 (H4K5) affect arginine-3 methylation catalyzed by both type I and type II PRMTs at the biochemical level. Our studies found that acylations of H4K5 resulted in decreased levels of arginine methylation by PRMT1, PRMT3, and PRMT8. In contrast, PRMT5 exhibits an increased rate of arginine methylation upon H4K5 acetylation, propionylation, and crotonylation, but not upon H4K5 methylation, butyrylation, or 2-hydroxyisobutyrylation. Methylation of H4K5 did not affect arginine methylation by PRMT1 or PRMT5. There was a small increase in the rate of arginine methylation by PRMT8. Strikingly, a marked increase in the rate of arginine methylation was observed for PRMT3. Finally, N-terminal acetylation reduced the rate of arginine methylation by PRMT3 but had little influence on PRMT1, -5, and -8 activity. These results together highlight the underlying mechanistic differences in substrate recognition among different PRMTs and pave the way for the elucidation of the complex interplay of histone modifications.
Project description:HER2 is a receptor tyrosine kinase, which is amplified and overexpressed in a subset of human cancers including breast and gastric cancers, and is indicated in its involvement in progression of cancer. Although its specific ligand(s) has not been detected, HER2 homodimerization, which is critical for its activation, is considered to be dependent on its expression levels. Here, we demonstrate a significant role of HER2 methylation by protein lysine methyltransferase SMYD3 in HER2 homodimerization. We found that SMYD3 trimethylates HER2 protein at lysine 175. HER2 homodimerization was enhanced in the presence of SMYD3, and substitution of lysine 175 of HER2 with alanine (HER2-K175A) reduced the formation of HER2 homodimers. Furthermore, HER2-K175A revealed lower level of autophosphorylation than wild-type HER2. We also identified that knockdown of SMYD3 attenuated this autophosphorylation in breast cancer cells. Our results imply that SMYD3-mediated methylation of HER2 at Lysine 175 may regulate the formation of HER2 homodimer and subsequent autophosphorylation and suggest that the SMYD3-mediated methylation pathway seems to be a good target for development of novel anti-cancer therapy.
Project description:AKT1 is a cytosolic serine/threonine kinase that is overexpressed in various types of cancer and has a central role in human tumorigenesis. Although it is known that AKT1 is post-translationally modified in various ways including phosphorylation and ubiquitination, methylation has not been reported so far. Here we demonstrate that the protein lysine methyltrasnferase SMYD3 methylates lysine 14 in the PH domain of AKT1 both in vitro and in vivo. Lysine 14-substituted AKT1 shows significantly lower levels of phosphorylation at threonine 308 than wild-type AKT1, and knockdown of SMYD3 as well as treatment with a SMYD3 inhibitor significantly attenuates this phosphorylation in cancer cells. Furthermore, substitution of lysine 14 diminishes the plasma membrane accumulation of AKT1, and cancer cells overexpressing lysine 14-substiuted AKT1 shows lower growth rate than those overexpressing wild-type AKT1. These results imply that SMYD3-mediated methylation of AKT1 at lysine 14 is essential for AKT1 activation and that SMYD3-mediated AKT1 methylation appears to be a good target for development of anti-cancer therapy.
Project description:SMYD3 is a member of the SMYD lysine methylase family and plays an important role in the methylation of various histone and non-histone targets. Aberrant SMYD3 expression contributes to carcinogenesis and SMYD3 upregulation was proposed as a prognostic marker in various solid cancers. Here we summarize SMYD3-mediated regulatory mechanisms, which are implicated in the pathophysiology of cancer, as drivers of distinct oncogenic pathways. We describe SMYD3-dependent mechanisms affecting cancer progression, highlighting SMYD3 interplay with proteins and RNAs involved in the regulation of cancer cell proliferation, migration and invasion. We also address the effectiveness and mechanisms of action for the currently available SMYD3 inhibitors. The findings analyzed herein demonstrate that a complex network of SMYD3-mediated cytoplasmic and nuclear interactions promote oncogenesis across different cancer types. These evidences depict SMYD3 as a modulator of the transcriptional response and of key signaling pathways, orchestrating multiple oncogenic inputs and ultimately, promoting transcriptional reprogramming and tumor transformation. Further insights into the oncogenic role of SMYD3 and its targeting of different synergistic oncogenic signals may be beneficial for effective cancer treatment.
Project description:SMYD3, a SET and MYND domain containing lysine methyltransferase, catalyzes the transfer of the methyl group from a methyl donor onto the N? group of a lysine residue in the substrate protein. Methylation of MAP3 kinase kinase (MAP3K2) by SMYD3 has been implicated in Ras-driven tumorigenesis. The crystal structure of SMYD3 in complex with MAP3K2 peptide reveals a shallow hydrophobic pocket (P-2), which accommodates the binding of a phenylalanine residue at the -2 position of the substrate (F258) is a crucial determinant of substrate specificity of SMYD3. To better understand the substrate preference of SMYD3 at the -2 position, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and the MM/GBSA method were performed on the crystal structure of SMYD3-MAP3K2 complex (PDB: 5EX0) after substitution of F258 residue of MAP3K2 to each of the other 19 natural residues, respectively. Binding free energy calculations reveal that the P-2 pocket prefers an aromatic hydrophobic group and none of the substitutions behave better than the wild-type phenylalanine residue does. Furthermore, we investigated the structure-activity relationships (SAR) of a series of non-natural phenylalanine derivative substitutions at the -2 position and found that quite a few modifications on the sidechain of F258 residue could strengthen its binding to the P-2 pocket of SMYD3. These explorations provide insights into developing novel SMYD3 inhibitors with high potency and high selectivity against MAP3K2 and cancer.
Project description:Modifications of histone tails are involved in the regulation of a wide range of biological processes including cell cycle, cell survival, cell division, and cell differentiation. Among the modifications, histone methylation plays a critical role in cardiac and skeletal muscle differentiation. In our earlier studies, we found that SMYD3 has methyltransferase activity to histone H3 lysine 4, and that its up-regulation is involved in the tumorigenesis of human colon, liver, and breast. To clarify the role of Smyd3 in development, we have studied its expression patterns in zebrafish embryos and the effect of its suppression on development using Smyd3-specific antisense morpholino-oligonucleotides. We here show that transcripts of smyd3 were expressed in zebrafish embryos at all developmental stages examined and that knockdown of smyd3 in embryos resulted in pericardial edema and defects in the trunk structure. In addition, these phenotypes were associated with abnormal expression of three heart-chamber markers including cmlc2, amhc and vmhc, and abnormal expression of myogenic regulatory factors including myod and myog. These data suggest that Smyd3 plays an important role in the development of heart and skeletal muscle.
Project description:Mammalian early embryonic development is controlled by a unique program of gene expression, and involves epigenetic reprogramming of histone modifications and DNA methylation. SET and MYND domain-containing protein 3 (SMYD3) is a histone H3 lysine 4 methyltransferase that plays important roles in transcription regulation. The expression of SMYD3 has been studied in some cancer cell lines. However, its expression in oocytes and embryos has not previously been reported. Here, we detected the SMYD3 mRNA and found that it was expressed throughout bovine oocyte in vitro maturation and early embryonic development. Microinjection of SMYD3 siRNA at germinal vesicle stage decreased the transcription level of NANOG, and blocked the development of in vitro fertilization embryos at 4-8 cell stage. Conversely, Microinjection of SMYD3 siRNA at pronuclear stage did not affect early embryonic development. Our findings suggest that SMYD3 regulates the expression of NANOG, and plays an essential role in bovine early embryonic development.
Project description:Cells undergoing developmental processes are characterized by persistent non-genetic alterations in chromatin, termed epigenetic changes, represented by distinct patterns of DNA methylation and histone post-translational modifications. Sirtuins, a group of conserved NAD(+)-dependent deacetylases or ADP-ribosyltransferases, promote longevity in diverse organisms; however, their molecular mechanisms in ageing regulation remain poorly understood. Yeast Sir2, the first member of the family to be found, establishes and maintains chromatin silencing by removing histone H4 lysine 16 acetylation and bringing in other silencing proteins. Here we report an age-associated decrease in Sir2 protein abundance accompanied by an increase in H4 lysine 16 acetylation and loss of histones at specific subtelomeric regions in replicatively old yeast cells, which results in compromised transcriptional silencing at these loci. Antagonizing activities of Sir2 and Sas2, a histone acetyltransferase, regulate the replicative lifespan through histone H4 lysine 16 at subtelomeric regions. This pathway, distinct from existing ageing models for yeast, may represent an evolutionarily conserved function of sirtuins in regulation of replicative ageing by maintenance of intact telomeric chromatin.