The hypoxia inducible factor/erythropoietin (EPO)/EPO receptor pathway is disturbed in a rat model of chronic kidney disease related anemia.
ABSTRACT: Anemia is a known driver for hypoxia inducible factor (HIF) which leads to increased renal erythropoietin (EPO) synthesis. Bone marrow (BM) EPO receptor (EPOR) signals are transduced through a JAK2-STAT5 pathway. The origins of anemia of chronic kidney disease (CKD) are multifactorial, including impairment of both renal EPO synthesis as well as intestinal iron absorption. We investigated the HIF- EPO- EPOR axis in kidney, BM and proximal tibia in anemic juvenile CKD rats.CKD was induced by 5/6 nephrectomy in young (20 days old) male Sprague-Dawley rats while C group was sham operated. Rats were sacrificed 4 weeks after CKD induction and 5 minutes after a single bolus of IV recombinant human EPO. An additional control anemic (C-A) group was daily bled for 7 days.Hemoglobin levels were similarly reduced in CKD and C-A (11.4 ± 0.3 and 10.8±0.2 Vs 13.5±0.3 g/dL in C, p<0.0001). Liver hepcidin mRNA was decreased in CA but increased in CKD. Serum iron was unchanged while transferrin levels were mildly decreased in CKD. Kidney HIF2? protein was elevated in C-A but unchanged in CKD. Kidney EPO protein and mRNA levels were unchanged between groups. However, BM EPO protein (which reflects circulating EPO) was increased in C-A but remained unchanged in CKD. BM and proximal tibia EPOR were unchanged in C-A but decreased in CKD. Proximal tibial phospho-STAT5 increased after the EPO bolus in C but not in CKD.Compared to blood loss, anemia in young CKD rats is associated with inappropriate responses in the HIF-EPO-EPO-R axis: kidney HIF2? and renal EPO are not increased, BM and bone EPOR levels, as well as bone pSTAT5 response to EPO are reduced. Thus, anemia of CKD may be treated with additional therapeutic avenues beyond iron and EPO supplementation.
Project description:Given the limited efficacy and potential disadvantages of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) in treating anemia of chronic kidney disease (CKD), the development of better alternative therapies has become a priority. The primary purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of <i>Angelica sinensis</i> polysaccharide (ASP) and its underlying mechanism in the treatment of renal anemia. In the present study, we found that ASP could enhance hypoxic induction of EPO in Hep3B cells, with a mechanism that involved the stabilization of HIF-2? protein. In parallel, ASP rescued the inhibition of EPO, induced by proinflammatory factor TNF-? through blocking GATA2 and NF-?B activation. In a rat model of adenine-induced anemia of CKD, oral administration of ASP corrected anemia and alleviated renal damage and inflammation. By increasing the accumulation of HIF-2? protein and reducing the expression of NF-?B and GATA2 as well as pro-inflammatory cytokines, ASP stimulated both renal and hepatic EPO production, and resulted in an elevation of serum EPO. The restoration of EPO production and EPOR mRNA expression with ASP treatment activated EPOR downstream JAK2/STAT5 and PI3K/Akt signaling, induced their target genes, such as Bcl-xL, Fam132b and Tfrc, and increased Bcl-2/Bax ratio in bone marrow-derived mononuclear cells of CKD rats. Furthermore, we found that ASP suppressed hepatic hepcidin expression, mobilized iron from spleen and liver and increased serum iron. These findings demonstrate that ASP elicits anti-anemic action by restoring EPO production and improving iron availability in the setting of CKD in rats.
Project description:Recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO) is a first-line therapeutic for the anemia of chronic kidney disease, cancer chemotherapy, AIDS (Zidovudine therapy), and lower-risk myelodysplastic syndrome. However, rhEPO frequently elevates hypertension, is costly, and may affect cancer progression. Potentially high merit therefore exists for defining new targets for anti-anemia agents within erythropoietin (EPO) and EPO receptor (EPOR) regulatory circuits.EPO production by renal interstitial fibroblasts is subject to modulation by several regulators of hypoxia-inducible factor 2a (HIF2a) including Iron Response Protein-1, prolyl hydroxylases, and HIF2a acetylases, each of which holds potential as anti-anemia drug targets. The cell surface receptor for EPO (EPOR) preassembles as a homodimer, together with Janus Kinase 2 (JAK2), and therefore it remains attractive to develop novel agents that trigger EPOR complex activation (activating antibodies, mimetics, small-molecule agonists). Additionally, certain downstream transducers of EPOR/JAK2 signaling may be druggable, including Erythroferrone (a hepcidin regulator), a cytoprotective Spi2a serpin, and select EPOR-associated protein tyrosine phosphatases.While rhEPO (and biosimilars) are presently important mainstay erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs), impetus exists for studies of novel ESAs that fortify HIF2a's effects, act as EPOR agonists, and/or bolster select downstream EPOR pathways to erythroid cell formation. Such agents could lessen rhEPO dosing, side effects, and/or costs.
Project description:Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen (JPYS), the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) decoction, has been commonly used to treat chronic kidney disease (CKD) and its complications such as anemia. JPYS has been previously found to induce erythropoietin (EPO) production in HEK293T cells and CKD rats. However, the mechanism of JPYS in treating anemia of CKD rats has remained largely unknown. Here, we further extend our effort to investigate the translational control of hypoxia inducible factor- (HIF-) ? protein via ERK signaling and the effect on iron recycling-related protein expression by JPYS, thus revealing the mechanism of JPYS in correcting anemia in CKD. Experimental CKD rats with anemia were induced by 5/6 nephrectomy. Rats were administrated orally with high dose (6.0?g/kg/d) and low dose (1.5?g/kg/d) of JPYS for 90 days. Serum hepcidin level was determined to evaluate iron homeostasis. The protein expressions of HIF-2?, erythropoietin (EPO), ferritin, and ferroportin (FPN) and the phosphorylation level of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) were detected by Western blot. The results showed that JPYS treatment significantly ameliorated kidney function by reducing increased levels of blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum creatinine (Scr), and urine protein (UPRO). Periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) and Masson staining observation showed that the renal pathological damage was restored in JPYS-treated CKD rats. In parallel, JPYS markedly improved CKD anemia through upregulation of red blood cell (RBC), hemoglobin (HGB), and hematocrit (HCT). JPYS stimulated EPO and HIF-2? protein expressions in both the kidney and liver of CKD rats. Furthermore, JPYS induced the phosphorylation of ERK1/2 protein. In addition, JPYS regulated protein expression of ferritin and FPN in both the liver and spleen of CKD rats and the serum level of hepcidin. In conclusion, JPYS induces the expression of EPO through ERK-mediated HIF-2? protein accumulation and regulates systemic iron recycling, supporting its role in promoting erythropoiesis and improvement of anemia in CKD.
Project description:Identification of the underlying defects in congenital erythrocytosis has provided mechanistic insights into the regulation of erythropoiesis and oxygen homeostasis. The Hypoxia Inducible Factor (HIF) pathway plays a key role in this regard. In this pathway, an enzyme, Prolyl Hydroxylase Domain protein 2 (PHD2), constitutively prolyl hydroxylates HIF-2?, thereby targeting HIF-2? for degradation by the von Hippel Lindau (VHL) tumor suppressor protein. Under hypoxia, this modification is attenuated, resulting in the stabilization of HIF-2? and transcriptional activation of the erythropoietin (EPO) gene. Circulating EPO then binds to the EPO receptor (EPOR) on red cell progenitors in the bone marrow, leading to expansion of red cell mass. Loss of function mutations in PHD2 and VHL, as well as gain of function mutations in HIF-2? and EPOR, are well established causes of erythrocytosis. Here, we highlight recent developments that show that the study of this condition is still evolving. Specifically, novel mutations have been identified that either change amino acids in the zinc finger domain of PHD2 or alter splicing of the VHL gene. In addition, continued study of HIF-2? mutations has revealed a distinctive genotype-phenotype correlation. Finally, novel mutations have recently been identified in the EPO gene itself. Thus, the cascade of genes that at a molecular level leads to EPO action, namely PHD2 -?>?HIF2A -?>?VHL -?>?EPO -?>?EPOR, are all mutational targets in congenital erythrocytosis.
Project description:Chronic kidney disease (CKD) causes anemia by renal damage. In CKD, the kidney is submitted to hypoxia, persistent inflammation, leading to fibrosis and permanent loss of renal function. Human recombinant erythropoietin (rEPO) has been widely used to treat CKD-associated anemia and is known to possess organ-protective properties that are independent from its well-established hematopoietic effects. Nonhematopoietic effects of EPO are mediated by an alternative receptor that is proposed to consist of a heterocomplex between the erythropoietin receptor (EPOR) and the beta common receptor (?cR). The present study explored the effects of rEPO to prevent renal fibrosis in adenine-induced chronic kidney disease (Ad-CKD) and their association with the expression of the heterodimer EPOR/?cR. Male Wistar rats were randomized to control group (CTL), adenine-fed rats (Ad-CKD), and Ad-CKD with treatment of rEPO (1050?IU/kg, once weekly for 4 weeks). Ad-CKD rats exhibited anemia, uremia, decreased renal function, increased infiltration of inflammatory cells, tubular atrophy, and fibrosis. rEPO treatment not only corrected anemia but reduced uremia and partially improved renal function as well. In addition, we observed that rEPO diminishes tubular injury, prevents fibrosis deposition, and induces the EPOR/?cR heteroreceptor. The findings may explain the extrahematopoietic effects of rEPO in CKD and provide new strategies for the treatment of renal fibrosis in CKD.
Project description:Erythropoietin (Epo) is produced in the kidney and liver in a hypoxia-inducible manner via the activation of hypoxia-inducible transcription factors (HIFs) to maintain oxygen homeostasis. Accelerating Epo production in hepatocytes is one plausible therapeutic strategy for treating anemia caused by kidney diseases. To elucidate the regulatory mechanisms of hepatic Epo production, we analyzed mouse lines harboring liver-specific deletions of genes encoding HIF-prolyl-hydroxylase isoforms (PHD1, PHD2, and PHD3) that mediate the inactivation of HIF1? and HIF2? under normal oxygen conditions. The loss of all PHD isoforms results in both polycythemia, which is caused by Epo overproduction, and fatty livers. We found that deleting any combination of two PHD isoforms induces polycythemia without steatosis complications, whereas the deletion of a single isoform induces no apparent phenotype. Polycythemia is prevented by the loss of either HIF2? or the hepatocyte-specific Epo gene enhancer (EpoHE). Chromatin analyses show that the histones around EpoHE dissociate from the nucleosome structure after HIF2? activation. HIF2? also induces the expression of HIF3?, which is involved in the attenuation of Epo production. These results demonstrate that the total amount of PHD activity is more important than the specific function of each isoform for hepatic Epo expression regulated by a PHD-HIF2?-EpoHE cascade in vivo.
Project description:Certain concepts concerning EPO/EPOR action modes have been challenged by in vivo studies: Bcl-x levels are elevated in maturing erythroblasts, but not in their progenitors; truncated EPOR alleles that lack a major p85/PI3K recruitment site nonetheless promote polycythemia; and Erk1 disruption unexpectedly bolsters erythropoiesis. To discover novel EPO/EPOR action routes, global transcriptome analyses presently are applied to interrogate EPO/EPOR effects on primary bone marrow-derived CFUe-like progenitors. Overall, 160 EPO/EPOR target transcripts were significantly modulated 2-to 21.8-fold. A unique set of EPO-regulated survival factors included Lyl1, Gas5, Pim3, Pim1, Bim, Trib3 and Serpina 3g. EPO/EPOR-modulated cell cycle mediators included Cdc25a, Btg3, Cyclin-d2, p27-kip1, Cyclin-g2 and CyclinB1-IP-1. EPO regulation of signal transduction factors was also interestingly complex. For example, not only Socs3 plus Socs2 but also Spred2, Spred1 and Eaf1 were EPO-induced as negative-feedback components. Socs2, plus five additional targets, further proved to comprise new EPOR/Jak2/Stat5 response genes (which are important for erythropoiesis during anemia). Among receptors, an atypical TNF-receptor Tnfr-sf13c was up-modulated >5-fold by EPO. Functionally, Tnfr-sf13c ligation proved to both promote proerythroblast survival, and substantially enhance erythroblast formation. The EPOR therefore engages a sophisticated set of transcriptome response circuits, with Tnfr-sf13c deployed as one novel positive regulator of proerythroblast formation.
Project description:Osteoblasts are an important component of the hematopoietic microenvironment in bone. However, the mechanisms by which osteoblasts control hematopoiesis remain unknown. We show that augmented HIF signaling in osteoprogenitors results in HSC niche expansion associated with selective expansion of the erythroid lineage. Increased red blood cell production occurred in an EPO-dependent manner with increased EPO expression in bone and suppressed EPO expression in the kidney. In contrast, inactivation of HIF in osteoprogenitors reduced EPO expression in bone. Importantly, augmented HIF activity in osteoprogenitors protected mice from stress-induced anemia. Pharmacologic or genetic inhibition of prolyl hydroxylases1/2/3 in osteoprogenitors elevated EPO expression in bone and increased hematocrit. These data reveal an unexpected role for osteoblasts in the production of EPO and modulation of erythropoiesis. Furthermore, these studies demonstrate a molecular role for osteoblastic PHD/VHL/HIF signaling that can be targeted to elevate both HSCs and erythroid progenitors in the local hematopoietic microenvironment.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:Erythrocytosis is characterized by the expansion of erythrocyte compartment including elevated red blood cell number, hematocrit, and hemoglobin content. Familial erythrocytosis (FE) is a congenital disorder with different genetic background. Type 1 FE is primary FE caused by mutation in erythropoietin receptor gene (EPOR). Type 2-5 FE are secondary FEs caused by mutations of genes involved in oxygen sensing pathway important for erythropoietin (EPO) regulation. In the present study, we summarized associations between EPOR and EPO gene variations with development of FE and searched for genetic variants located within regulatory regions. METHODS:Publications reporting EPOR and EPO sequence variants associated with FE or clinical features of erythrocytosis were retrieved from PubMed and WoS. In silico, sequence reanalysis was performed using Ensembl genomic browser, release 89 to screen for variants located within regulatory regions. RESULTS:To date, 28 variants of the EPOR and seven variants of the EPO gene have been associated with erythrocytosis or upper hematocrit. Sequence variants were also found to be present within regulatory regions. CONCLUSIONS:Role of variants in regulatory regions of the EPO gene should be further investigated.
Project description:Erythropoietin (Epo) binding to the Epo receptor (EpoR) elicits downstream signaling that is essential for red blood cell production. One important negative regulatory mechanism to terminate Epo signaling is Epo-induced EpoR endocytosis and degradation. Defects in this mechanism play a key role in the overproduction of erythrocytes in primary familial and congenital polycythemia (PFCP). Here we have identified a novel mechanism mediating Epo-dependent EpoR internalization. Epo induces Cbl-dependent ubiquitination of the p85 regulatory subunit of PI3K, which binds to phosphotyrosines on EpoR. Ubiquitination allows p85 to interact with the endocytic protein epsin-1, thereby driving EpoR endocytosis. Knockdown of Cbl, expression of its dominant negative forms, or expression of an epsin-1 mutant devoid of ubiquitin-interacting motifs all compromise Epo-induced EpoR internalization. Mutated EpoRs mimicking those from PFCP patients cannot bind p85, co-localize with epsin-1, or internalize on Epo stimulation and exhibit Epo hypersensitivity. Similarly, knockdown of Cbl also causes Epo hypersensitivity in primary erythroid progenitors. Restoring p85 binding to PFCP receptors rescues Epo-induced epsin-1 co-localization and EpoR internalization and normalizes Epo hypersensitivity. Our results uncover a novel Cbl/p85/epsin-1 pathway in EpoR endocytosis and show that defects in this pathway contribute to excessive Epo signaling and erythroid hyperproliferation in PFCP.