TET family proteins and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
ABSTRACT: Mammalian DNA is epigenetically marked by 5'-cytosine methylation (5-methylcytosine [5-mC]). The Ten-eleven translocation (TET) enzymes (TET1, TET2, and TET3) are implicated in DNA demethylation, through dioxygenase activity that converts 5-mC to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5-hmC). Although decreased TET is reportedly associated with decreased 5-hmC levels in various cancers, functions of 5-hmC and TET expression in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) are unclear. We used ELISA and immunohistochemistry tests to analyze 5-hmC status in ESCC tissues, RT-qPCR to analyze TET family mRNA expression in normal and tumor tissues, and pyrosequencing to quantify LINE-1 (i.e., global DNA methylation) levels. ELISA and immunohistochemical testing showed 5-hmC levels were significantly lower in ESCC than in paired normal tissues (P < 0.0001). TET2 expression was significantly lower in ESCCs than paired normal tissues (P < 0.0001), and significantly associated with 5-hmC levels in ESCCs (P = 0.003, r = 0.33). 5-hmC levels were also significantly associated with LINE-1 methylation level (P = 0.0002, r = 0.39). Patients with low 5-hmC levels had shorter overall survival than those with higher levels, although not significantly so (P = 0.084). In conclusion, 5-hmC expression was decreased in ESCC tissues, and was associated with TET2 expression level. TET2 reduction and subsequent 5-hmC loss might affect ESCC development.
Project description:Ten-eleven translocation (TET) enzymes catalyze the oxidation of 5-methylcytosine (5-mC) to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5-hmC), 5-formylcytosine and 5-carboxylcytosine, which result in genomic DNA demethylation. It was reported that 5-hmC levels were decreased in a variety of cancers and could be regarded as an epigenetic hallmark of cancer. In the present study, 5-hmC levels were detected by immunohistochemistry (IHC) in 173 esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) tissues and 91 corresponding adjacent non-tumor tissues; DNA dot blot assays were used to detect the 5-hmC level in another 50 pairs of ESCC tissues and adjacent non-tumor tissues. In addition, the mRNA level of TET1, TET2 and TET3 in these 50 pairs of ESCC tissues was detected by real-time PCR. The IHC and DNA dot blot results showed that 5-hmC levels were significantly lower in ESCC tissues compared with corresponding adjacent non-tumor tissues (P = 0.029). TET2 and TET3 expression was also significantly decreased in tumor tissues compared with paired non-tumor tissues (TET2, P < 0.0001; TET3, P = 0.009), and the decrease in 5-hmC was significantly associated with the downregulation of TET2 expression (r = 0.405, P = 0.004). Moreover, the loss of 5-hmC in ESCC tissues was significantly associated with poor overall survival among patients with ESCC (P = 0.043); multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that the loss of 5-hmC in ESCC tissues was an independent unfavorable prognostic indicator for patients with ESCC (HR = 1.569, P = 0.029). In conclusion, 5-hmC levels were decreased in ESCC tissues, and the loss of 5-hmC in tumor tissues was an independent unfavorable prognostic factor for patients with ESCC.
Project description:DNA methylation has been proven to be a critical epigenetic mark important for various cellular processes. Here, we report that redox-active quinones, a ubiquitous class of chemicals found in natural products, cancer therapeutics and environment, stimulate the conversion of 5 mC to 5 hmC in vivo, and increase 5 hmC in 5751 genes in cells. 5 hmC increase is associated with significantly altered gene expression of 3414 genes. Interestingly, in quinone-treated cells, labile iron-sensitive protein ferritin light chain showed a significant increase at both mRNA and protein levels indicating a role of iron regulation in stimulating Tet-mediated 5 mC oxidation. Consistently, the deprivation of cellular labile iron using specific chelator blocked the 5 hmC increase, and a delivery of labile iron increased the 5 hmC level. Moreover, both Tet1/Tet2 knockout and dimethyloxalylglycine-induced Tet inhibition diminished the 5 hmC increase. These results suggest an iron-regulated Tet-dependent DNA demethylation mechanism mediated by redox-active biomolecules.
Project description:The TET family of dioxygenases (TET1/2/3) can convert 5-methylcytosine (5 mC) into 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5 hmC) and has been shown to be involved in active and passive DNA demethylation. Here, we demonstrate that altering TET dioxygenase levels within physiological range can affect DNA methylation dynamics of HEK293 cells. Overexpression of TET1 increased global 5 hmC levels and was accompanied by mild DNA demethylation of promoters, gene bodies and CpG islands. Conversely, the simultaneous knockdown of TET1, TET2, and TET3 led to decreased global 5 hmC levels and mild DNA hypermethylation of above-mentioned regions. The methylation changes observed in the overexpression and knockdown studies were mostly non-reciprocal and occurred with different preference depending on endogenous methylation and gene expression levels. Single-nucleotide 5 hmC profiling performed on a genome-wide scale revealed that TET1 overexpression induced 5 mC oxidation without a distribution bias among genetic elements and structures. Detailed analysis showed that this oxidation was related to endogenous 5 hmC levels. In addition, our results support the notion that the effects of TET1 overexpression on gene expression are generally unrelated to its catalytic activity.
Project description:DNA methylation is an important epigenetic modification as a hallmark in cancer. Conversion of 5-methylcytosine (5-mC) to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5-hmC) by ten-eleven translocation (TET) family enzymes plays an important biological role in embryonic stem cells, development, aging and disease. Lymphoid specific helicase (LSH), a chromatin remodeling factor, is regarded as a reader of 5-hmC. Recent reports show that the level of 5-hmC is altered in various types of cancers. However, the change in 5-hmC levels in cancer and associated metastasis is not well defined. We report that the level of 5-hmC was decreased in metastatic tissues of nasopharyngeal carcinoma, breast cancer, and colon cancer relative to that in non-metastasis tumor tissues. Furthermore, our data show that TET2, but not TET3, interacted with LSH, whereas LSH increased TET2 expression through silencing miR-26b-5p and miR-29c-5p. Finally, LSH promoted genome stability by silencing satellite expression by affecting 5-hmC levels in pericentromeric satellite repeats, and LSH was resistant to cisplatin-induced DNA damage. Our data indicate that 5-hmC might serve as a metastasis marker for cancer and that the decreased expression of LSH is likely one of the mechanisms of genome instability underlying 5-hmC loss in cancer.
Project description:DNA methylation at the 5 position of cytosine (5-mC) is a key epigenetic mark that is critical for various biological and pathological processes. 5-mC can be converted to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5-hmC) by the ten-eleven translocation (TET) family of DNA hydroxylases. Here, we report that "loss of 5-hmC" is an epigenetic hallmark of melanoma, with diagnostic and prognostic implications. Genome-wide mapping of 5-hmC reveals loss of the 5-hmC landscape in the melanoma epigenome. We show that downregulation of isocitrate dehydrogenase 2 (IDH2) and TET family enzymes is likely one of the mechanisms underlying 5-hmC loss in melanoma. Rebuilding the 5-hmC landscape in melanoma cells by reintroducing active TET2 or IDH2 suppresses melanoma growth and increases tumor-free survival in animal models. Thus, our study reveals a critical function of 5-hmC in melanoma development and directly links the IDH and TET activity-dependent epigenetic pathway to 5-hmC-mediated suppression of melanoma progression, suggesting a new strategy for epigenetic cancer therapy.
Project description:The mechanism responsible for developmental stage-specific regulation of ?-globin gene expression involves DNA methylation. Previous results have shown that the ?-globin promoter is nearly fully demethylated during fetal liver erythroid differentiation and partially demethylated during adult bone marrow erythroid differentiation. The hypothesis that 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5 hmC), a known intermediate in DNA demethylation pathways, is involved in demethylation of the ?-globin gene promoter during erythroid differentiation was investigated by analyzing levels of 5-methylcytosine (5 mC) and 5 hmC at a CCGG site within the 5' ?-globin gene promoter region in FACS-purified cells from baboon bone marrow and fetal liver enriched for different stages of erythroid differentiation. Our results show that 5 mC and 5 hmC levels at the ?-globin promoter are dynamically modulated during erythroid differentiation with peak levels of 5 hmC preceding and/or coinciding with demethylation. The Tet2 and Tet3 dioxygenases that catalyze formation of 5 hmC are expressed during early stages of erythroid differentiation and Tet3 expression increases as differentiation proceeds. In baboon CD34+ bone marrow-derived erythroid progenitor cell cultures, ?-globin expression was positively correlated with 5 hmC and negatively correlated with 5 mC at the ?-globin promoter. Supplementation of culture media with Vitamin C, a cofactor of the Tet dioxygenases, reduced ?-globin promoter DNA methylation and increased ?-globin expression when added alone and in an additive manner in combination with either DNA methyltransferase or LSD1 inhibitors. These results strongly support the hypothesis that the Tet-mediated 5 hmC pathway is involved in developmental stage-specific regulation of ?-globin expression by mediating demethylation of the ?-globin promoter.
Project description:DNA methylation is an important epigenetic modification and is frequently altered in cancer. Convert of 5-methylcytosine (5 mC) to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5 hmC) by ten-eleven translocation (TET) family enzymes plays important biological functions in embryonic stem cells, development, aging and disease. Recent reports showed that level of 5 hmC was altered in various types of cancers. However, the change of 5 hmC level in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and association with clinical outcome were not well defined. Here, we reported that level of 5 hmC was decreased in HCC tissues, as compared with non-tumor tissues. Clincopathological analysis showed the decreased level of 5 hmC in HCC was associated with tumor size, AFP level and poor overall survival. We also found that the decreased level of 5 hmC in non-tumor tissues was associated with tumor recurrence in the first year after surgical resection. In an animal model with carcinogen DEN-induced HCC, we found that the level of 5 hmC was gradually decreased in the livers during the period of induction. There was further reduction of 5 hmC in tumor tissues when tumors were developed. In contrast, level of 5 mC was increased in HCC tissues and the increased 5 mC level was associated with capsular invasion, vascular thrombosis, tumor recurrence and overall survival. Furthermore, our data showed that expression of TET1, but not TET2 and TET3, was downregulated in HCC. Taken together, our data indicated 5 hmC may be served as a prognostic marker for HCC and the decreased expression of TET1 is likely one of the mechanisms underlying 5 hmC loss in HCC.
Project description:The discovery of cytosine hydroxymethylation (5-hmC) as a mechanism that potentially controls DNA methylation changes typical of neoplasia prompted us to investigate its behavior in colon cancer. 5-hmC is globally reduced in proliferating cells such as colon tumors and the gut crypt progenitors, from which tumors can arise. Here, we show that colorectal tumors and cancer cells express Ten-Eleven Translocation (TET) transcripts at levels similar to normal tissues. Genome-wide analyses show that promoters marked by 5-hmC in normal tissue, and those identified as TET2 targets in colorectal cancer cells, are resistant to methylation gain in cancer. In vitro studies of TET2 in cancer cells confirm that these promoters are resistant to methylation gain independently of sustained TET2 expression. We also find that a considerable number of the methylation gain-resistant promoters marked by 5-hmC in normal colon overlap with those that are marked with poised bivalent histone modifications in embryonic stem cells. Together our results indicate that promoters that acquire 5-hmC upon normal colon differentiation are innately resistant to neoplastic hypermethylation by mechanisms that do not require high levels of 5-hmC in tumors. Our study highlights the potential of cytosine modifications as biomarkers of cancerous cell proliferation. 5 normal colon samples and 4 matching tumor samples were profiled for 5-hydroxymethylcytosine content genomewide using hmeDIP-seq. The colorectal cancer cell line HCT116 was profiled for binding of TET2 genomewide by chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq).
Project description:Epigenetic regulation of lineage-specific genes is important for the differentiation and function of T cells. Ten-eleven translocation (Tet) proteins catalyze 5-methylcytosine (5 mC) conversion to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5 hmC) to mediate DNA demethylation. However, the roles of Tet proteins in the immune response are unknown. Here, we characterized the genome-wide distribution of 5 hmC in CD4(+) T cells and found that 5 hmC marks putative regulatory elements in signature genes associated with effector cell differentiation. Moreover, Tet2 protein was recruited to 5 hmC-containing regions, dependent on lineage-specific transcription factors. Deletion of Tet2 in T cells decreased their cytokine expression, associated with reduced p300 recruitment. In vivo, Tet2 plays a critical role in the control of cytokine gene expression in autoimmune disease. Collectively, our findings suggest that Tet2 promotes DNA demethylation and activation of cytokine gene expression in T cells.
Project description:Melanoma demonstrates altered patterns of DNA methylation that are associated with genetic instability and transcriptional repression of numerous genes. Active DNA demethylation is mediated by TET enzymes that catalyze conversion of 5-methylcytosine (mC) to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (hmC). Loss of hmC occurs in melanoma and correlates with disease progression. Here we analyzed the genomic distribution of hmC along with mC in nevus and melanoma using oxidative bisulfite chemistry combined with high-density arrays. HmC was enriched relative to mC at enhancers, 5'UTR regions and CpG shores in nevus and melanoma samples, pointing to specific TET enzyme activity. The proportion of interrogated CpG sites with high hmC levels was lower in melanoma (0.54%) than in nevus (2.0%). Depletion of hmC in melanoma was evident across all chromosomes and intragenic regions, being more pronounced in metastatic than in non-metastatic tumors. The patterns of hmC distribution in melanoma samples differed significantly from those in nevus samples, exceeding differences in mC patterns. We identified specific CpG sites and regions with significantly lower hmC levels in melanoma than in nevus that might serve as diagnostic markers. Differentially hydroxymethylated regions localized to cancer-related genes, including the PTEN gene promoter, suggesting that deregulated DNA hydroxymethylation may contribute to melanoma pathogenesis.