Tristetraprolin-driven regulatory circuit controls quality and timing of mRNA decay in inflammation.
ABSTRACT: For a successful yet controlled immune response, cells need to specifically destabilize inflammatory mRNAs but prevent premature removal of those still used. The regulatory circuits controlling quality and timing in the global inflammatory mRNA decay are not understood. Here, we show that the mRNA-destabilizing function of the AU-rich element-binding protein tristetraprolin (TTP) is inversely regulated by the p38 MAPK activity profile such that after inflammatory stimulus the TTP-dependent decay is initially limited to few mRNAs. With time, the TTP-dependent decay gradually spreads resulting in cumulative elimination of one third of inflammation-induced unstable mRNAs in macrophages in vitro. We confirmed this sequential decay model in vivo since LPS-treated mice with myeloid TTP ablation exhibited similar cytokine dysregulation profile as macrophages. The mice were hypersensitive to LPS but otherwise healthy with no signs of hyperinflammation seen in conventional TTP knockout mice demonstrating the requirement for myeloid TTP in re-installment but not maintenance of immune homeostasis. These findings reveal a TTP- and p38 MAPK-dominated regulatory mechanism that is vital for balancing acute inflammation by a temporally and qualitatively controlled mRNA decay.
Project description:p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) stabilises pro-inflammatory mediator mRNAs by inhibiting AU-rich element (ARE)-mediated decay. We show that in bone-marrow derived murine macrophages tristetraprolin (TTP) is necessary for the p38 MAPK-sensitive decay of several pro-inflammatory mRNAs, including cyclooxygenase-2 and the novel targets interleukin (IL)-6, and IL-1alpha. TTP(-/-) macrophages also strongly overexpress IL-10, an anti-inflammatory cytokine that constrains the production of the IL-6 despite its disregulation at the post-transcriptional level. TTP directly controls IL-10 mRNA stability, which is increased and insensitive to inhibition of p38 MAPK in TTP(-/-) macrophages. Furthermore, TTP enhances deadenylation of an IL-10 3'-untranslated region RNA in vitro.
Project description:Controlled decay of cytokine and chemokine mRNAs restrains the time and amplitude of inflammatory responses. Tristetraprolin (TTP) binds to AU-rich elements in 3´ untranslated regions of mRNA and targets the bound mRNA for degradation. We have addressed here the function of TTP in balancing the macrophage activation state by a comprehensive analysis of TTP-dependent mRNA decay in LPS-stimulated macrophages from WT and TTP-deficient mice. We compared mRNA stability in LPS-treated BMDMs from WT and TTP-/- mice by microarray-based measurement of the remnant mRNA after transcriptional blockade with actinomycin D (act D). To increase the sensitivity of the mRNA decay profiling we inhibited the LPS-activated p38 MAPK with the specific inhibitor SB203580 since p38 MAPK negatively regulates the mRNA-destabilizing activity of TTP. LPS stimulation was for 3h before addition of act D. RNA was harvested at 0', 45' and 90' thereafter.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The tristetraprolin (TTP) family of mRNA-binding proteins contains three major members, Ttp, Zfp36l1, and Zfp36l2. Ttp down-regulates the stability of AU-rich element-containing mRNAs and functions as an anti-inflammation regulator. METHODS:To examine whether other TTP family proteins also play roles in the inflammatory response, their expression profiles and the possible mRNA targets were determined in the knockdown cells. RESULTS:Ttp mRNA and protein were highly induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS), whereas Zfp36l1 and Zfp36l2 mRNAs were down-regulated and their proteins were phosphorylated during early lipopolysaccharide stimulation. Biochemical and functional analyses exhibited that the decrease of Zfp36l2 mRNA was cross-regulated by Ttp. Knockdown of Zfp36l1 and Zfp36l2 increased the basal level of Mkp-1 mRNAs by prolonging its half-life. Increasing the expression of Mkp-1 inhibited the activation of p38 MAPK under lipopolysaccharide stimulation and down-regulated Tnf?, and Ttp mRNA. In addition, hyper-phosphorylation of Zfp36l1 might stabilize Mkp-1 expression by forming a complex with the adapter protein 14-3-3 and decreasing the interaction with deadenylase Caf1a. CONCLUSIONS:Our findings imply that the expression and phosphorylation of Zfp36l1 and Zfp36l2 may modulate the basal level of Mkp-1 mRNA to control p38 MAPK activity during lipopolysaccharide stimulation, which would affect the inflammatory mediators production. Zfp36l1 and Zfp36l2 are important regulators of the innate immune response.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Quiescence (G0) is a transient, cell cycle-arrested state. By entering G0, cancer cells survive unfavorable conditions such as chemotherapy and cause relapse. While G0 cells have been studied at the transcriptome level, how post-transcriptional regulation contributes to their chemoresistance remains unknown. RESULTS:We induce chemoresistant and G0 leukemic cells by serum starvation or chemotherapy treatment. To study post-transcriptional regulation in G0 leukemic cells, we systematically analyzed their transcriptome, translatome, and proteome. We find that our resistant G0 cells recapitulate gene expression profiles of in vivo chemoresistant leukemic and G0 models. In G0 cells, canonical translation initiation is inhibited; yet we find that inflammatory genes are highly translated, indicating alternative post-transcriptional regulation. Importantly, AU-rich elements (AREs) are significantly enriched in the upregulated G0 translatome and transcriptome. Mechanistically, we find the stress-responsive p38 MAPK-MK2 signaling pathway stabilizes ARE mRNAs by phosphorylation and inactivation of mRNA decay factor, Tristetraprolin (TTP) in G0. This permits expression of ARE mRNAs that promote chemoresistance. Conversely, inhibition of TTP phosphorylation by p38 MAPK inhibitors and non-phosphorylatable TTP mutant decreases ARE-bearing TNF? and DUSP1 mRNAs and sensitizes leukemic cells to chemotherapy. Furthermore, co-inhibiting p38 MAPK and TNF? prior to or along with chemotherapy substantially reduces chemoresistance in primary leukemic cells ex vivo and in vivo. CONCLUSIONS:These studies uncover post-transcriptional regulation underlying chemoresistance in leukemia. Our data reveal the p38 MAPK-MK2-TTP axis as a key regulator of expression of ARE-bearing mRNAs that promote chemoresistance. By disrupting this pathway, we develop an effective combination therapy against chemosurvival.
Project description:The mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) p38 pathway is reported to regulate macrophage responses to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) at least partly via the phosphorylation of the mRNA-destabilizing factor tristetraprolin (TTP). LPS-activated MAPK p38 phosphorylates and activates the downstream kinase MAPK-activated protein kinase 2 (MK2), which then phosphorylates serines 52 and 178 of TTP, resulting in loss of mRNA-destabilizing activity. As a consequence, mRNAs that contain binding sites for TTP are stabilized in a manner that is acutely sensitive to the activity of the MAPK p38 pathway. Dual specificity phosphatase 1 (DUSP1) dephosphorylates and inactivates MAPK p38. Dusp1-/- macrophages overexpress a number of pro-inflammatory mediators, but their genome-wide responses to LPS have not yet been described in detail. Dusp1-/- mice are exceptionally sensitive to a wide variety of inflammatory challenges, including experimental models of endotoxemia or sepsis. It has been suggested (but not yet proven) that DUSP1 controls the inflammatory response of macrophages in part via the regulation of MAPK p38 activity and TTP phosphorylation status. We generated a mouse knock-in strain, in which codons 52 and 178 of the endogenous Zfp36 gene (which encodes TTP) were mutated to alanine codons. The mutation gives rise to a constitutively active form of TTP, which cannot be inactivated via the p38 MAPK pathway. The Zfp36aa/aa strain was back-crossed against C57/BL6 for > 10 generations. We also generated a double-targeted strain in which the Zfp36 mutation was combined with disruption of the Dusp1 gene. This expression array describes LPS responses of primary mouse bone marrow-derived macrophages of four genotypes, and closely matched genetic background: wild type (Dusp1+/+ : Zfp36+/+); TTP mutant (Zfp36aa/aa); DUSP1 knock out (Dusp1-/-); and double targeted (Dusp1-/- : Zfp36aa/aa). The data provide a comprehensive picture of the impact of Dusp1 deletion or TTP mutation on the responses of primary macrophages to LPS. They also demonstrate that the excessive inflammatory responses of Dusp1-/- macrophages are largely a consequence of the phosphorylation and inactivation of TTP. Genome wide expression profiles of wild type, Dusp1-/-, Zfp36aa/aa and Dusp1-/-/Zfp36aa/aa M-CSF derived macrophages, stimulated with LPS for 1 or 4 hours
Project description:The p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathway, acting through the downstream kinase MK2, regulates the stability of many proinflammatory mRNAs that contain adenosine/uridine-rich elements (AREs). It is thought to do this by modulating the expression or activity of ARE-binding proteins that regulate mRNA turnover. MK2 phosphorylates the ARE-binding and mRNA-destabilizing protein tristetraprolin (TTP) at serines 52 and 178. Here we show that the p38 MAPK pathway regulates the subcellular localization and stability of TTP protein. A p38 MAPK inhibitor causes rapid dephosphorylation of TTP, relocalization from the cytoplasm to the nucleus, and degradation by the 20S/26S proteasome. Hence, continuous activity of the p38 MAPK pathway is required to maintain the phosphorylation status, cytoplasmic localization, and stability of TTP protein. The regulation of both subcellular localization and protein stability is dependent on MK2 and on the integrity of serines 52 and 178. Furthermore, the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) pathway synergizes with the p38 MAPK pathway to regulate both stability and localization of TTP. This effect is independent of kinases that are known to be synergistically activated by ERK and p38 MAPK. We present a model for the actions of TTP and the p38 MAPK pathway during distinct phases of the inflammatory response.
Project description:Tristetraprolin (TTP) is an inducible zinc finger AU-rich RNA-binding protein essential for enforcing degradation of mRNAs encoding inflammatory chemokines and cytokines. Most studies on TTP center on the connection between mRNA half-life and inflammatory output, because loss of TTP amplifies inflammation by increasing the stability of AU-rich mRNAs. Here, we focused on how TTP controls cytokine and chemokine production in the nonresolving inflammation of cancer using tissue-specific approaches. In contrast with model in vitro macrophage systems, we found constitutive TTP expression in late-stage tumor-associated macrophages (TAM). However, TTP's effects on AU-rich mRNA stability were negligible and limited by constitutive p38? MAPK activity, which was the main driver of proinflammatory cytokine production in TAMs at the posttranscriptional level. Instead, elimination of TTP caused excessive protein production of inflammatory mediators, suggesting TTP-dependent translational suppression of AU-rich mRNAs. Manipulation of the p38?-TTP axis in macrophages has significant effects on the growth of tumors and therefore represents a means to manipulate inflammation in the tumor microenvironment.
Project description:Precise control of mRNA decay is fundamental for robust yet not exaggerated inflammatory responses to pathogens. Parameters determining the specificity and extent of mRNA degradation within the entire inflammation-associated transcriptome remain incompletely understood. Using transcriptome-wide high resolution occupancy assessment of the mRNA-destabilizing protein TTP, a major inflammation-limiting factor, we qualitatively and quantitatively characterize TTP binding positions and functionally relate them to TTP-dependent mRNA decay in immunostimulated macrophages. We identify pervasive TTP binding with incompletely penetrant linkage to mRNA destabilization. A necessary but not sufficient feature of TTP-mediated mRNA destabilization is binding to 3â?? untranslated regions (UTRs). Mapping of binding positions of the mRNA-stabilizing protein HuR in activated macrophages revealed that TTP and HuR binding sites in 3â?? UTRs occur mostly in different transcripts implicating only a limited co-regulation of inflammatory mRNAs by these proteins. Remarkably, we identify robust and widespread TTP binding to introns of stable transcripts. Nuclear TTP is associated with spliced-out introns and maintained in the nucleus throughout the inflammatory response. Our study establishes a functional annotation of binding positions dictating TTP-dependent mRNA decay in immunostimulated macrophages. The findings allow navigating the transcriptome-wide landscape of RNA elements controlling inflammation. Experiment comparing RNA decay rates in WT and TTP-/- macrophages at LPS 3 h and 6 h. Transcription was blocked with actinomycin D for 0, 45 or 90 min. Decay rates was calculated using linear model.
Project description:Cyclic-di-AMP (c-di-AMP) is a bacterial second messenger that is produced by intracellular bacterial pathogens in mammalian host macrophages. Previous reports have shown that c-di-AMP is recognized by intracellular pattern recognition receptors of the innate immune system and stimulate type I interferon response. Here we report that the response to c-di-AMP includes a post-transcriptional component that is involved in the induction of additional inflammatory cytokines including IL-6, CXCL2, CCL3, and CCL4. Their mRNAs contain AU-rich elements (AREs) in their 3' UTR that promote decay and repress translation. We show that c-di-AMP leads to the phosphorylation of p38 MAPK as well as the induction of the ARE-binding protein TTP, both of which are components of a signaling pathway that modulate the expression of ARE-containing mRNAs at the post-transcriptional level. Pharmacological inhibition of p38 reduces the c-di-AMP-dependent release of induced cytokines, while TTP knockdown increases their release and mRNA stability. C-di-AMP can specifically increase the expression of a nano-Luciferase reporter that contains AREs. We propose a non-canonical intracellular mode of activation of the p38 MAPK pathway with the subsequent enhancement in the expression of inflammatory cytokines. C-di-AMP is widely distributed in bacteria, including infectious intracellular pathogens; hence, understanding of its post-transcriptional gene regulatory effect on the host response may provide novel approaches for therapy.
Project description:TNF expression of macrophages is under stringent translational control that depends on the p38 MAPK/MK2 pathway and the AU-rich element (ARE) in the TNF mRNA. Here, we elucidate the molecular mechanism of phosphorylation-regulated translation of TNF. We demonstrate that translation of the TNF-precursor at the ER requires expression of the ARE-binding and -stabilizing factor human antigen R (HuR) together with either activity of the p38 MAPK/MK2 pathway or the absence of the ARE-binding and -destabilizing factor tristetraprolin (TTP). We show that phosphorylation of TTP by MK2 decreases its affinity to the ARE, inhibits its ability to replace HuR, and permits HuR-mediated initiation of translation of TNF mRNA. Since translation of TTP's own mRNA is also regulated by this mechanism, an intrinsic feedback control of the inflammatory response is ensured. The phosphorylation-regulated TTP/HuR exchange at target mRNAs provides a reversible switch between unstable/non-translatable and stable/efficiently translated mRNAs.