A new function of the splicing factor SRSF2 in the control of E2F1-mediated cell cycle progression in neuroendocrine lung tumors.
ABSTRACT: The transcription factor E2F1 belongs to the E2F family and plays a crucial role during cell cycle progression and apoptosis. Ser/Arg-Rich (SR) proteins are a family of RNA-binding phosphoproteins that control both constitutive and alternative pre-mRNA splicing events. We previously identified the SR protein SRSF2 as a new transcriptional target of E2F1 and demonstrated that both proteins cooperate to induce apoptosis in non-small cell lung carcinoma. In this study, we postulated that SRSF2 is also involved in the proliferative functions of E2F1. Using IHC, we first demonstrate that SRSF2 and its phosphorylated form (P-SRSF2) are overexpressed in neuroendocrine lung tumors that are highly proliferative tumors expressing high levels of E2F1. Importantly, we show a direct correlation between cyclin E, an E2F1-target gene controlling S phase, and P-SRSF2 proteins levels (p = 0.0083), suggesting a role of SRSF2 in E2F1-mediated cellular proliferation. Accordingly, using neuroendocrine lung carcinoma cell lines, we demonstrate that SRSF2 is a cell cycle-regulated protein involved in entry and progression into S phase. We also provide evidence that SRSF2 interacts with E2F1 and stimulates its transcriptional control of cell cycle target genes such as cyclin E. Finally, we show that inhibition of AKT signaling pathway prevents SRSF2 phosphorylation and activity toward E2F1 transcriptional function. Taken together, these results identify a new role of SRSF2 in the control of cell cycle progression and reinforce the functional link between SRSF2 and E2F1 proteins.
Project description:Serine-arginine protein kinase (SRPK) belongs to a class of cell cycle regulating kinases that can phosphorylate proteins containing serine/arginine-Rich (SR) regions. SR proteins are a family of RNA binding phosphoproteins that control both constitutive and alternative pre-mRNA splicing events. However, little is known about their role in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In the present study, we found that serine-arginine protein kinase 2 (SRPK2) expression was upregulated in NSCLC tissues compared with adjacent normal tissues. Kaplan-Meier curve analyses showed that the overall survival time of NSCLC patients with high SRPK2 expression was shorter than those with low SRPK2 expression. Overexpression of SRPK2 promoted NSCLC cell proliferation and cell cycle arrest, while knockdown of SRPK2 inhibited proliferation and promoted cell cycle arrest in NSCLC cell lines. SRPK2 promoted the transcriptional regulation of E2F1 on downstream cell cycle related genes through phosphorylation of SC35. Xenograft model showed that SRPK2 promoted tumor growth in vivo. SRPK2 phosphorylated SC35 and phosphorylated SC35 activated E2F1 transcription of cyclin-related proteins, thereby promoting the cycle progression of NSCLC. Our findings demonstrated that SRPK2 may be a potential therapeutic target for NSCLC clinical therapy, which plays an important role in the progression of NSCLC.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>The E2f transcription factor family has a pivotal role in controlling the cell fate in general, and in particular cancer development, by regulating the expression of several genes required for S phase entry and progression through the cell cycle. It has become clear that the transcriptional activation of at least one member of the family, E2F1, can also induce apoptosis. An appropriate balance of positive and negative regulators appears to be necessary to modulate E2F1 transcriptional activity, and thus cell fate.<h4>Methodology/principal findings</h4>In this report, we show that Api5, already known as a regulator of E2F1 induced-apoptosis, is required for the E2F1 transcriptional activation of G1/S transition genes, and consequently, for cell cycle progression and cell proliferation. Api5 appears to be a cell cycle regulated protein. Removal of Api5 reduces cyclin E, cyclin A, cyclin D1 and Cdk2 levels, causing G1 cell cycle arrest and cell cycle delay. Luciferase assays established that Api5 directly regulates the expression of several G1/S genes under E2F1 control. Using protein/protein and protein/DNA immunoprecipitation studies, we demonstrate that Api5, even if not physically interacting with E2F1, contributes positively to E2F1 transcriptional activity by increasing E2F1 binding to its target promoters, through an indirect mechanism.<h4>Conclusion/significance</h4>The results described here support the pivotal role of cell cycle related proteins, that like E2F1, may act as tumor suppressors or as proto-oncogenes during cancer development, depending on the behavior of their positive and negative regulators. According to our findings, Api5 contributes to E2F1 transcriptional activation of cell cycle-associated genes by facilitating E2F1 recruitment onto its target promoters and thus E2F1 target gene transcription.
Project description:Splicing abnormalities frequently occur in cancer. A key role as splice site choice regulator is played by the members of the SR (Ser/Arg-rich) family of proteins. We recently demonstrated that SRSF2 is involved in cisplatin-mediated apoptosis of human lung carcinoma cell lines. In this study, by using immunohistochemistry, we demonstrate that the SR proteins SRSF1 and SRSF2 are overexpressed in 63% and 65% of lung adenocarcinoma (ADC) as well as in 68% and 91% of squamous cell lung carcinoma (SCC), respectively, compared to normal lung epithelial cells. In addition, we show that SRSF2 overexpression correlates with high level of phosphorylated SRSF2 in both ADC (p<0.0001) and SCC (p = 0.02), indicating that SRSF2 mostly accumulates under a phosphorylated form in lung tumors. Consistently, we further show that the SR-phosphorylating kinases SRPK1 and SRPK2 are upregulated in 92% and 94% of ADC as well as in 72% and 68% of SCC, respectively. P-SRSF2 and SRPK2 scores are correlated in ADC (p = 0.01). Using lung adenocarcinoma cell lines, we demonstrate that SRSF1 overexpression leads to a more invasive phenotype, evidenced by activation of PI3K/AKT and p42/44MAPK signaling pathways, increased growth capacity in soft agar, acquisition of mesenchymal markers such as E cadherin loss, vimentin and fibronectin gain, and increased resistance to chemotherapies. Finally, we provide evidence that high levels of SRSF1 and P-SRSF2 proteins are associated with extensive stage (III-IV) in ADC. Taken together, these results indicate that a global deregulation of pre-mRNA splicing regulators occurs during lung tumorigenesis and does not predict same outcome in both Non Small Cell Lung Carcinoma histological sub-types, likely contributing to a more aggressive phenotype in adenocarcinoma.
Project description:The RNA helicase DHX33 has been shown to be a critical regulator of cell proliferation and growth. However, the underlying mechanisms behind DHX33 function remain incompletely understood. We present original evidence in multiple cell lines that DHX33 transcriptionally controls the expression of genes involved in the cell cycle, notably cyclin, E2F1, cell division cycle (CDC), and minichromosome maintenance (MCM) genes. DHX33 physically associates with the promoters of these genes and controls the loading of active RNA polymerase II onto these promoters. DHX33 deficiency abrogates cell cycle progression and DNA replication and leads to cell apoptosis. In zebrafish, CRISPR-mediated knockout of DHX33 results in downregulation of cyclin A2, cyclin B2, cyclin D1, cyclin E2, cdc6, cdc20, E2F1, and MCM complexes in DHX33 knockout embryos. Additionally, we found the overexpression of DHX33 in a subset of non-small-cell lung cancers and in Ras-mutated human lung cancer cell lines. Forced reduction of DHX33 in these cancer cells abolished tumor formation in vivo Our study demonstrates for the first time that DHX33 acts as a direct transcriptional regulator to promote cell cycle progression and plays an important role in driving cell proliferation during both embryo development and tumorigenesis.
Project description:The enhancer pioneer transcription factor FoxA1 is a global mediator of steroid receptor (SR) action in hormone-dependent cancers. In castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC), FoxA1 acts as an androgen receptor cofactor to drive G? to M-phase cell-cycle transit. Here, we describe a mechanistically distinct SR-independent role for FoxA1 in driving G? to S-phase cell-cycle transit in CRPC. By comparing FoxA1 binding sites in prostate cancer cell genomes, we defined a codependent set of FoxA1-MYBL2 and FoxA1-CREB1 binding sites within the regulatory regions of the Cyclin E2 and E2F1 genes that are critical for CRPC growth. Binding at these sites upregulate the Cyclin E2 and Cyclin A2 genes in CRPC but not in earlier stage androgen-dependent prostate cancer, establishing a stage-specific role for this pathway in CRPC growth. Mechanistic investigations indicated that FoxA1, MYBL2, or CREB1 induction of histone H3 acetylation facilitated nucleosome disruption as the basis for codependent transcriptional activation and G? to S-phase cell-cycle transit. Our findings establish FoxA1 as a pivotal driver of the cell-cycle in CRPC which promotes G? to S-phase transit as well as G? to M-phase transit through two distinct mechanisms.
Project description:Aberration in cell cycle has been shown to be a common occurrence in lung cancer, and cell cycle inhibitor represents an effective therapeutic strategy. In this study, we test the effects of a natural macrocyclic depsipeptide largazole on lung cancer cells and report that this compound potently inhibits the proliferation and clonogenic activity of lung cancer cells but not normal bronchial epithelial cells. Largazole arrests cell cycle at G1 phase with up-regulation of the expression of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21. Interestingly, largazole enhances the E2F1-HDAC1 binding affinity and induces a proteasomal degradation of E2F1, leading to suppression of E2F1 function in lung cancer but not normal bronchial epithelial cells. Because E2F1 is overexpressed in lung cancer tumor samples, these data indicate that largazole is an E2F1-targeting cell cycle inhibitor, which bears therapeutic potentials for this malignant neoplasm.
Project description:SRSF2 is a serine/arginine-rich protein belonging to the family of SR proteins that are crucial regulators of constitutive and alternative pre-mRNA splicing. Although it is well known that phosphorylation inside RS domain controls activity of SR proteins, other post-translational modifications regulating SRSF2 functions have not been described to date. In this study, we provide the first evidence that the acetyltransferase Tip60 acetylates SRSF2 on its lysine 52 residue inside the RNA recognition motif, and promotes its proteasomal degradation. We also demonstrate that the deacetylase HDAC6 counters this acetylation and acts as a positive regulator of SRSF2 protein level. In addition, we show that Tip60 downregulates SRSF2 phosphorylation by inhibiting the nuclear translocation of both SRPK1 and SRPK2 kinases. Finally, we demonstrate that this acetylation/phosphorylation signalling network controls SRSF2 accumulation as well as caspase-8 pre-mRNA splicing in response to cisplatin and determines whether cells undergo apoptosis or G(2)/M cell cycle arrest. Taken together, these results unravel lysine acetylation as a crucial post-translational modification regulating SRSF2 protein level and activity in response to genotoxic stress.
Project description:Transcription pause release from gene promoters has been recognized to be a critical point for transcriptional regulation in higher eukaryotes. Recent studies suggest that regulatory RNAs are extensively involved in transcriptional control, which may enlist various RNA binding proteins. We recently showed a key role of SRSF2, a member of the SR family of splicing regulators, in binding to promoter-associated small RNA to mediate transcription pause release, a regulatory strategy akin to the function of the HIV Tat protein via binding to the TAR element in nascent RNA to activate transcription. In this report, we further dissect the structural requirement for SRSF2 to function as a transcription activator and extend the analysis to multiple SR and hnRNP proteins by using the MS2 tethering strategy. Our results reveal that SRSF2 is a unique SR protein that activates transcription in a position-dependent manner while three other SR proteins enhance translation in a position-independent fashion. In contrast, multiple hnRNP proteins appear to negatively influence mRNA levels, especially when tethered in the gene body. These findings suggest broad participation of RNA binding proteins in diverse aspects of regulated gene expression at both the transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels in mammalian cells.
Project description:Several experimental strategies in the treatment of cancer include drug alteration of cell cycle regulatory pathways as a useful strategy. Extra-ribosomal functions of human ribosomal protein L3 (uL3) may affect DNA repair, cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. In the present study, we demonstrated that uL3 is required for the activation of G1/S transition genes. Luciferase assays established that uL3 negatively regulates the activity of E2F1 promoter. Induced ribosome-free uL3 reduces Cyclin D1 mRNA and protein levels. Using protein/protein immunoprecipitation methods, we demonstrated that uL3 physically interacts with PARP-1 affecting E2F1 transcriptional activity. Our findings led to the identification of a new pathway mediated by uL3 involving E2F1 and Cyclin D1 in the regulation of cell cycle progression.
Project description:The lung alveoli slowly self-renew pneumocytes, but their facultative regeneration capacity is rapidly efficient after an injury, so fibrosis infrequently occurs. We recently observed Keratin 14 (KRT14) expression during diffuse alveolar damage (DAD), but not in controls. We wonder if KRT14 may be a marker of pneumocyte transition from quiescence to regeneration. Quantitative PCR and Western blot analyses highlighted the presence of KRT14 (mRNA and protein) only in human lung samples with DAD or interstitial lung disease (ILD). In the exponentially growing cell lines A549 and H441, the mRNA and protein levels of KRT14 peaked at day one after cell seeding and decreased at day two, opposite to what observed for the proliferation marker E2F1. The inverse relation of KRT14 versus E2F1 expression holds true also for other proliferative markers, such as cyclin E1 and cyclin D1. Of interest, we also found that E2F1 silencing caused cell cycle arrest and increased KRT14 expression, whilst E2F1 stimulation induced cell cycle progression and decreased KRT14. KRT14 also increased in proliferative pneumocytes (HPAEpiC) just before transdifferentiation. Overall, our results suggest that KRT14 is a viable biomarker of pneumocyte activation, and repair/regeneration. The involvement of KRT14 in regenerative process may suggest a novel pharmaceutical target to accelerate lung repair.