Association between cytoplasmic CRABP2, altered retinoic acid signaling, and poor prognosis in glioblastoma.
ABSTRACT: Retinoic acid (RA), a metabolite of vitamin A, is required for the regulation of growth and development. Aberrant expression of molecules involved in RA signaling has been reported in various cancer types including glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2) has previously been shown to play a key role in the transport of RA to retinoic acid receptors (RARs) to activate their transcription regulatory activity. Here, we demonstrate that CRABP2 is predominantly located in the cytoplasm of GBM tumors. Cytoplasmic, but not nuclear, CRABP2 levels in GBM tumors are associated with poor patient survival. Treatment of malignant glioma cell lines with RA results in a dose-dependent increase in accumulation of CRABP2 in the cytoplasm. CRABP2 knockdown reduces proliferation rates of malignant glioma cells, and enhances RA-induced RAR activation. Levels of CRYAB, a small heat shock protein with anti-apoptotic activity, and GFAP, an astrocyte-specific intermediate filament protein, are greatly reduced in CRABP2-depleted cells. Restoration of CRYAB expression partially but significantly reversed the effect of CRABP2 depletion on RAR activation. Our combined in vivo and in vitro data indicate that: (i) CRABP2 is an important determinant of clinical outcome in GBM patients, and (ii) the mechanism of action of CRABP2 in GBM involves sequestration of RA in the cytoplasm and activation of an anti-apoptotic pathway, thereby enhancing proliferation and preventing RA-mediated cell death and differentiation. We propose that reducing CRABP2 levels may enhance the therapeutic index of RA in GBM patients.
Project description:Nephroblastoma or Wilms tumor is the most frequent kidney cancer in children and accounts for 98% of kidney tumors in this age group. Despite favorable prognosis, a subgroup of these patients progresses to recurrence and death. The retinoic acid (RA) pathway plays a role in the chemoprevention and treatment of tumors due to its effects on cell differentiation and its antiproliferative, anti-oxidant, and pro-apoptotic activities. Reports describe abnormal cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2) expression in neoplasms and its correlation with prognostic factors and clinical and pathological characteristics. The aim of this study was to evaluate the immunohistochemical expression of retinoic acid receptor alpha (RARA) and CRABP2 in paraffin-embedded samples of nephroblastomas via semiquantitative and quantitative analyses and to correlate this expression with prognostic factors.Seventy-seven cases of nephroblastomas were selected from pediatric oncology services. The respective medical records and surgical specimens were reviewed. Three representative tumor samples and one non-tumor renal tissue sample were selected for the preparation of tissue microarrays (TMA). The Allred scoring system was used for semiquantitative immunohistochemical analyses, whereas a morphometric analysis of the stained area was employed for quantitative evaluation. The nonparametric Mann-Whitney test was used for comparisons between two groups, while the nonparametric Kruskal-Wallis test was used to compare three or more groups.Immunopositivity for RARA and CRABP2 was observed in both the nucleus and cytoplasm. All histological components of the nephroblastoma (blastema, epithelium, and stroma) were positive for both markers. RARA, based on semiquantitative analyses, and CRABP2, bases on quantitative analyses, exhibited increased immunohistochemical expression in patients with metastasis, with p values of 0.0247 and 0.0128, respectively. These findings were similar to the results of the quantitative analysis of RARA expression, showing greater immunopositivity in tumor samples of patients subjected to pre-surgical chemotherapy. No significant correlation was found with the other variables studied, such as disease stage, anaplasia, risk group, histological type, nodal involvement, and clinical evolution.Semiquantitative and quantitative analyses of the markers RARA and CRABP2 indicate their potential as biomarkers for tumor progression and their participation in nephroblastoma tumorigenesis.
Project description:Background: Cellular retinoic acid binding protein 2 (CRABP2) mediates retinoic acid/RA anti-cancer pathways. Resveratrol effectively reverses RA tolerance and upregulates CRABP2 expression of anaplastic thyroid cancer cell line THJ-11T. As DNA methylation is responsible for CRABP2 silencing, the CRABP2 methylation status of THJ-11T cells and the demethylating effect of resveratrol on this gene are elucidated. Materials and methods: The statuses of CRABP2 expression and methylation and the levels of DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B of THJ-11T cells were examined before and after resveratrol treatment via multiple experimental methods. The human medulloblastoma UW228-2 cell line was cited as the control of CRABP2 methylation and gemcitabine as the demethylator control. Results: RT-PCR, immunocytochemical staining and Western blotting showed that resveratrol significantly increased the CRABP2 expression and RA sensitivity of THJ-11T and UW228-2 cells. Bisulfite sequencing showed five CpG methylation sites at the CRABP2 promoter region of both cell lines, which were partially (3/5) demethylated by resveratrol and totally (5/5) by gemcitabine. DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B were reduced in UW228-2 cells and DNMT1 and DNMT3A were reduced in THJ-11T cells after resveratrol treatment in a time-related fashion. Conclusion: Resveratrol is able to erase CRABP2 methylation and can thereby increase the RA sensitivity of THJ-11T and UW228-2 cells. This study demonstrates the additional value of the natural polyphenolic compound resveratrol as a demethylator in cancer treatments.
Project description:Cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2) potently suppresses the growth of various carcinomas, but the mechanism(s) that underlies this activity remains incompletely understood. CRABP2 displays two distinct functions. The classical function of this protein is to directly deliver retinoic acid (RA) to RA receptor (RAR), a nuclear receptor activated by this hormone, in turn inducing the expression of multiple antiproliferative genes. The other function of the protein is exerted in the absence of RA and mediated by the RNA-binding and stabilizing protein HuR. CRABP2 directly binds to HuR, markedly strengthens its interactions with target mRNAs, and thus increases their stability and up-regulates their expression. Here we show that the anticarcinogenic activities of CRABP2 are mediated by both of its functions. Transcriptome analyses revealed that, in the absence of RA, a large cohort of transcripts is regulated in common by CRABP2 and HuR, and many of these are involved in regulation of oncogenic properties. Furthermore, both in cultured cells and in vivo, CRABP2 or a CRABP2 mutant defective in its ability to cooperate with RAR but competent in interactions with HuR suppressed carcinoma growth and did so in the absence of RA. Hence, transcript stabilization by the CRABP2-HuR complex significantly contributes to the ability of CRABP2 to inhibit tumorigenesis. Surprisingly, the observations also revealed that HuR regulates the expression of multiple genes involved in nuclear pore formation and is required for nuclear import of CRABP2 and for transcriptional activation by RAR. The data thus point at a novel function for this important protein.
Project description:Upon breaching of the endometrial surface epithelium, the implanting embryo embeds in the decidualizing stroma. Retinoic acid (RA), a metabolite of vitamin A, is an important morphogen during embryonic and fetal development, although the role of the RA pathway in the surrounding decidual cells is not understood. Here we show that decidual transformation of human endometrial stromal cells (HESCs) results in profound reprogramming of the RA signaling and metabolism pathways. Differentiating HESCs downregulate the intracellular carrier proteins CRABP2 and FABP5, responsible for transfer and binding of RA to the nuclear receptors RAR and PPAR?/?, respectively. Furthermore, the expression of RAR, the receptor that mediates the pro-apoptotic effects of RA, was also inhibited. By contrast, PPAR?/?, which transduces the differentiation responses of RA, was upregulated. Decidualization was also associated with increased expression of retinol-binding protein 4 (RBP4) and various enzymes involved in the metabolism of RA and its precursor, retinaldehyde (Rald), including CYP26A1, DHRS3, and RDH12. Exposure of differentiating HESCs to RA or Rald reversed the inhibition of the CRABP2-RAR pathway, perturbed the expression of decidual marker genes and triggered cell death. Taken together, the data demonstrate that decidualizing HESCs silence RA signaling by downregulating key cytoplasmic binding proteins and by increasing retinoid metabolism. However, excessive RA exposure is toxic for decidual cells and triggers a response that may lead to pregnancy failure.
Project description:The transcription factor Kruppel-like factor 2 (KLF2) displays anticarcinogenic activities but the mechanism that underlies this activity is unknown. We show here that KLF2 is markedly downregulated in human breast cancers and that its expression positively correlates with breast cancer patient survival. We show further that KLF2 suppresses tumor development by controlling the transcriptional activity of the vitamin A metabolite retinoic acid (RA). RA regulates gene transcription by activating two types of nuclear receptors: RA receptors (RARs), which inhibit tumor development, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor ?/? (PPAR?/?), which promotes tumorigenesis. The partitioning of RA between these receptors is regulated by two carrier proteins: cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2), which delivers RA to RARs, and fatty acid-binding protein 5 (FABP5), which shuttles ligands to PPAR?/?. We show that KLF2 induces the expression of CRABP2 and RAR? and inhibits the expression FABP5 and PPAR?/? thereby shifting RA signaling from the pro-carcinogenic FABP5/PPAR?/? to the growth-suppressing CRABP2/RAR path. The data thus reveal that KLF2 suppresses tumor growth by controlling the transcriptional activities of RA.
Project description:BACKGROUND:In the classical pathway of retinoic acid (RA) mediated gene transcription, RA binds to a nuclear hormone receptor dimer composed of retinoic acid receptor (RAR) and retinoid X receptor (RXR), to induce the expression of its downstream target genes. In addition to nuclear receptors, there are other intracellular RA binding proteins such as cellular retinoic acid binding proteins (CRABP1 and CRABP2) and cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes, whose contributions to the RA signaling pathway have not been fully understood. The objective of this study was to compare the significance of various RA binding receptors, i.e. CRABP1, CRABP2, CYP and RAR in the RA signaling pathway. In this regard, we developed a mathematical model of the RA pathway, which is one of the few models, if not the only one, that includes all main intracellular RA binding receptors. We then performed a global sensitivity analysis (GSA) to investigate the contribution of the RA receptors to RA-induced mRNA production, when the cells were treated with a wide range of RA levels, from physiological to pharmacological concentrations. RESULTS:Our results show that CRABP2 and RAR are the most and the least important proteins, respectively, in controlling the model performance at physiological concentrations of RA (1-10 nM). However, at higher concentrations of RA, CYP and RAR are the most sensitive parameters of the system. Furthermore, we found that depending on the concentrations of all RA binding proteins, the rate of metabolism of RA can either change or remain constant following RA therapy. The cellular levels of CRABP1 are more important than that of CRABP2 in controlling RA metabolite formation at pharmacological conditions (RA?=?0.1-1 ?M). Finally, our results indicate a significant negative correlation between total mRNA production and total RA metabolite formation at pharmacological levels of RA. CONCLUSIONS:Our simulations indicate that the significance of the RA binding proteins in the RA pathway of gene expression strongly depends on intracellular concentration of RA. This study not only can explain why various cell types respond to RA therapy differently, but also can potentially help develop pharmacological methods to increase the efficacy of the drug.
Project description:Pregnancy critically depends on the transformation of the human endometrium into a decidual matrix that controls embryo implantation and placenta formation, a process driven foremost by differentiation and polarization of endometrial stromal cells into mature and senescent decidual cells. Perturbations in the decidual process underpin a spectrum of prevalent reproductive disorders, including implantation failure and early pregnancy loss, emphasizing the need for new therapeutic interventions. Resveratrol is a naturally occurring polyphenol, widely used for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Using primary human endometrial stromal cell (HESC) cultures, we demonstrate that resveratrol has anti-deciduogenic properties, repressing not only the induction of the decidual marker genes PRL and IGFBP1 but also abrogating decidual senescence. Knockdown of Sirtuin 1, a histone deacetylase activated by resveratrol, restored the expression of IGFBP1 but not the induction of PRL or senescence markers in decidualizing HESCs, suggesting involvement of other pathways. We demonstrate that resveratrol interferes with the reprogramming of the retinoic acid signaling pathway in decidualizing HESCs by accelerating down-regulation of cellular retinoic acid-binding protein 2 (CRABP2) and retinoic acid receptor (RAR). Notably, knockdown of CRABP2 or RAR in HESCs was sufficient to recapitulate the anti-deciduogenic effects of resveratrol. Thus, while resveratrol has been advanced as a potential fertility drug, our results indicate it may have detrimental effects on embryo implantation by interfering with decidual remodeling of the endometrium.
Project description:We have utilized retinoic acid receptor ? (gamma) knockout (RAR?(-/-)) embryonic stem (ES) cells as a model system to analyze RAR? mediated transcriptional regulation of stem cell differentiation. Most of the transcripts regulated by all-trans retinoic acid (RA) in ES cells are dependent upon functional RAR? signaling. Notably, many of these RA-RAR? target genes are implicated in retinoid uptake and metabolism. For instance, Lrat (lecithin:retinol acyltransferase), Stra6 (stimulated by retinoic acid 6), Crabp2 (cellular retinoic acid binding protein 2), and Cyp26a1 (cytochrome p450 26a1) transcripts are induced in wild type (WT), but not in RAR?(-/-) cells. Transcripts for the transcription factors Pbx1 (pre-B cell leukemia homeobox-1), Wt1 (Wilm's tumor gene-1), and Meis1 (myeloid ecotropic viral integration site-1) increase upon RA treatment of WT, but not RAR?(-/-) cells. In contrast, Stra8, Dleu7, Leftb, Pitx2, and Cdx1 mRNAs are induced by RA even in the absence of RAR?. Mapping of the epigenetic signature of Meis1 revealed that RA induces a rapid increase in the H3K9/K14ac epigenetic mark at the proximal promoter and at two sites downstream of the transcription start site in WT, but not in RAR?(-/-) cells. Thus, RA-associated increases in H3K9/K14ac epigenetic marks require RAR? and are associated with increased Meis1 transcript levels, whereas H3K4me3 is present at the Meis1 proximal promoter even in the absence of RAR?. In contrast, at the Lrat proximal promoter primarily the H3K4me3 mark, and not the H3K9/K14ac mark, increases in response to RA, independently of the presence of RAR?. Our data show major epigenetic changes associated with addition of the RAR? agonist RA in ES cells.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Triple Negative Breast cancer (TNBC) is incurable cancer with higher rates of relapse and shorter overall survival compared with other subtypes of breast cancer. Cellular retinoic acid binding protein 2 (CRABP2) belongs to fatty acid binding protein (FABP) family which binds with all-trans retinoic acid (RA). Previous studies from the database have reported the patients with high expression of CRABP2 showed different prognosis in ER+ and ER- breast cancer. However, its biological role and exact mechanism in breast cancer remain unknown. This aim of this study was to explore how CRABP2 regulated invasion and metastasis based on the estrogen receptor-? (herein called ER) status in breast cancer. METHODS:Immunohistochemical staining method was used to analyze the expression of CRABP2 in human breast cancer tissues. Lentivirus vector-based shRNA technique was used to test the functional relevance of CRABP2 knockdown in breast tumors. Tail vein injection model was used to examine the lung metastasis. Co-immunoprecipitation, Western blotting, immunofluorescence, and quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) were conducted to investigate the underlying mechanism that influenced the ER to the regulation of CRABP2 to Lats1. RESULTS:We observed that knockdown of CRABP2 promotes EMT, invasion and metastasis of ER+ breast cancer cells in vitro and in vivo, whereas overexpression of CRABP2 yields the reverse results. In ER+ mammary cancer cells, the interaction of CRABP2 and Lats1 suppress the ubiquitination of Lats1 to activate Hippo pathway to inhibit the invasion and metastasis of ER+ mammary cancer. However, in ER- mammary cancer cells, the interaction of CRABP2 and Lats1 promote the ubiquitination of Lats1 to inactivate Hippo pathway to promote the invasion and metastasis of ER- mammary cancer. CONCLUSIONS:Our findings indicate that CRABP2 can suppress invasion and metastasis of ER+ breast cancer and promote invasion and metastasis of ER- breast cancer by regulating the stability of Lats1 in vitro and in vivo, and it provides new ideas for breast cancer therapy.
Project description:CRABP2 potently suppresses carcinoma cell growth, yet the mechanism(s) that underlie this activity remain incompletely understood. Two distinct functions are known for CRABP2: 1) the classical function of this protein is to directly deliver retinoic acid (RA) to the nuclear retinoic-acid receptorthereby activate gene expression, and 2) in the absence of RA, CRABP2 directly binds to the RNA-binding and stabilizing protein, HuR, and markedly strengthens its interactions with target mRNAs. We used microarray experiments to elucidated genes regulated by HuR and/or CRABP2 in the absence of retinoic acid. Two experiments were preformed: 1) Transcriptome profiles of MCF-7 cells overexpresssing shHuR were compared to control cells, both in the absence of retinoic acid. 2) Transcriptome profiles of MCF-7 cells overexpresssing shCRABP2 were compared to control cells, both in the absence of retinoic acid.