Mutations in six nephrosis genes delineate a pathogenic pathway amenable to treatment.
ABSTRACT: No efficient treatment exists for nephrotic syndrome (NS), a frequent cause of chronic kidney disease. Here we show mutations in six different genes (MAGI2, TNS2, DLC1, CDK20, ITSN1, ITSN2) as causing NS in 17 families with partially treatment-sensitive NS (pTSNS). These proteins interact and we delineate their roles in Rho-like small GTPase (RLSG) activity, and demonstrate deficiency for mutants of pTSNS patients. We find that CDK20 regulates DLC1. Knockdown of MAGI2, DLC1, or CDK20 in cultured podocytes reduces migration rate. Treatment with dexamethasone abolishes RhoA activation by knockdown of DLC1 or CDK20 indicating that steroid treatment in patients with pTSNS and mutations in these genes is mediated by this RLSG module. Furthermore, we discover ITSN1 and ITSN2 as podocytic guanine nucleotide exchange factors for Cdc42. We generate Itsn2-L knockout mice that recapitulate the mild NS phenotype. We, thus, define a functional network of RhoA regulation, thereby revealing potential therapeutic targets.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Scaffolding proteins of the intersectin (ITSN) family, ITSN1 and ITSN2, are crucial for the initiation stage of clathrin-mediated endocytosis. These proteins are closely related but have implications in distinct pathologies. To determine how these proteins could be separated in certain cell pathways we performed a comparative study of ITSNs. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We have shown that endogenous ITSN1 and ITSN2 colocalize and form a complex in cells. A structural comparison of five SH3 domains, which mediated most ITSNs protein-protein interactions, demonstrated a similarity of their ligand-binding sites. We showed that the SH3 domains of ITSN2 bound well-established interactors of ITSN1 as well as newly identified ITSNs protein partners. A search for a novel interacting interface revealed multiple tyrosines that could be phosphorylated in ITSN2. Phosphorylation of ITSN2 isoforms but not ITSN1 short isoform was observed in various cell lines. EGF stimulation of HeLa cells enhanced tyrosine phosphorylation of ITSN2 isoforms and enabled their recognition by the SH2 domains of the Fyn, Fgr and Abl1 kinases, the regulatory subunit of PI3K, the adaptor proteins Grb2 and Crk, and phospholipase C gamma. The SH2 domains mentioned were unable to bind ITSN1 short isoform. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results indicate that during evolution of vertebrates ITSN2 acquired a novel protein-interaction interface that allows its specific recognition by the SH2 domains of signaling proteins. We propose that these data could be important to understand the functional diversity of paralogous ITSN proteins.
Project description:DLC1 encodes a RhoA GTPase-activating protein and tumor suppressor lost in cancer by genomic deletion or epigenetic silencing and loss of DLC1 gene transcription. We unexpectedly identified non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines and tumor tissue that expressed DLC1 mRNA yet lacked DLC1 protein expression. We determined that DLC1 was ubiquitinated and degraded by cullin 4A-RING ubiquitin ligase (CRL4A) complex interaction with DDB1 and the FBXW5 substrate receptor. siRNA-mediated suppression of cullin 4A, DDB1, or FBXW5 expression restored DLC1 protein expression in NSCLC cell lines. FBXW5 suppression-induced DLC1 reexpression was associated with a reduction in the levels of activated RhoA-GTP and in RhoA effector signaling. Finally, FBXW5 suppression caused a DLC1-dependent decrease in NSCLC anchorage-dependent and -independent proliferation. In summary, we identify a posttranslational mechanism for loss of DLC1 and a linkage between CRL4A-FBXW5-associated oncogenesis and regulation of RhoA signaling.
Project description:We report several receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) ligands increase RhoA-guanosine triphosphate (GTP) in untransformed and transformed cell lines and determine this phenomenon depends on the RTKs activating the AKT serine/threonine kinase. The increased RhoA-GTP results from AKT phosphorylating three serines (S298, S329, and S567) in the DLC1 tumor suppressor, a Rho GTPase-activating protein (RhoGAP) associated with focal adhesions. Phosphorylation of the serines, located N-terminal to the DLC1 RhoGAP domain, induces strong binding of that N-terminal region to the RhoGAP domain, converting DLC1 from an open, active dimer to a closed, inactive monomer. That binding, which interferes with the interaction of RhoA-GTP with the RhoGAP domain, reduces the hydrolysis of RhoA-GTP, the binding of other DLC1 ligands, and the colocalization of DLC1 with focal adhesions and attenuates tumor suppressor activity. DLC1 is a critical AKT target in DLC1-positive cancer because AKT inhibition has potent antitumor activity in the DLC1-positive transgenic cancer model and in a DLC1-positive cancer cell line but not in an isogenic DLC1-negative cell line.
Project description:Following epithelial-mesenchymal transition, acquisition of avian trunk neural crest cell (NCC) polarity is prerequisite for directional delamination and migration, which in turn is essential for peripheral nervous system development. However, how this cell polarization is established and regulated remains unknown. Here we demonstrate that, using the RHOA biosensor in vivo and in vitro, the initiation of NCC polarization is accompanied by highly activated RHOA in the cytoplasm at the cell rear and its fluctuating activity at the front edge. This differential RHOA activity determines polarized NC morphology and motility, and is regulated by the asymmetrically localized RhoGAP Deleted in liver cancer (DLC1) in the cytoplasm at the cell front. Importantly, the association of DLC1 with NEDD9 is crucial for its asymmetric localization and differential RHOA activity. Moreover, NC specifiers, SOX9 and SOX10, regulate NEDD9 and DLC1 expression, respectively. These results present a SOX9/SOX10-NEDD9/DLC1-RHOA regulatory axis to govern NCC migratory polarization.
Project description:Recently, recessive mutations of MAGI2 were identified as a cause of steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome (SRNS) in humans and mice. To further delineate the pathogenesis of MAGI2 loss of function, we generated stable knockout lines for the two zebrafish orthologues magi2a and magi2b by CRISPR/Cas9. We also developed a novel assay for the direct detection of proteinuria in zebrafish independent of transgenic background. Whereas knockout of magi2b did not yield a nephrotic syndrome phenotype, magi2a-/- larvae developed ascites, periorbital edema, and proteinuria, as indicated by increased excretion of low molecular weight protein. Electron microscopy demonstrated extensive podocyte foot process effacement. As in human SRNS, we observed genotype/phenotype correlation, with edema onset occurring earlier in zebrafish with truncating alleles (5-6 days post fertilization) versus hypomorphic alleles (19-20 days post fertilization). Paradoxically, corticosteroid treatment exacerbated the phenotype, with earlier onset of edema. In contrast, treatment with cyclosporine A or tacrolimus had no significant effect. Although RhoA signaling has been implicated as a downstream mediator of MAGI2 activity, targeting of the RhoA pathway did not modify the nephrotic syndrome phenotype. In the first CRISPR/Cas9 zebrafish knockout model of SRNS, we found that corticosteroids may have a paradoxical effect in the setting of specific genetic mutations.
Project description:Although cell migration plays a central role in development and disease, the underlying molecular mechanism is not fully understood. Here we report that a phosphorylation-mediated molecular switch comprising deleted in liver cancer 1 (DLC1), tensin-3 (TNS3), phosphatase and tensin homologue (PTEN) and phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K) controls the spatiotemporal activation of the small GTPases, Rac1 and RhoA, thereby initiating directional cell migration induced by growth factors. On epidermal growth factor (EGF) or platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) stimulation, TNS3 and PTEN are phosphorylated at specific Thr residues, which trigger the rearrangement of the TNS3-DLC1 and PTEN-PI3K complexes into the TNS3-PI3K and PTEN-DLC1 complexes. Subsequently, the TNS3-PI3K complex translocates to the leading edge of a migrating cell to promote Rac1 activation, whereas PTEN-DLC1 translocates to the posterior for localized RhoA activation. Our work identifies a core signalling mechanism by which an external motility stimulus is coupled to the spatiotemporal activation of Rac1 and RhoA to drive directional cell migration.
Project description:The epithelial growth factor receptor plays an important role in cell migration and cancer metastasis, but the underlying molecular mechanism is not fully understood. We show here that differential regulation of the Ras-homology-GTPase-activating protein [corrected] (Rho-GAP) activity of deleted in liver cancer 1 (DLC1) by tensin3 and COOH-terminal tensin-like protein (cten) controls EGF-driven cell migration and transformation. Tensin3 binds DLC1 through its actin-binding domain, a region that is missing in cten, and thereby releases an autoinhibitory interaction between the sterile alpha motif and Rho-GAP domains of DLC1. Consequently, tensin3, but not cten, promotes the activation of DLC1, which, in turn, leads to inactivation of RhoA and decreased cell migration. Depletion of endogenous tensin3, but not cten, augmented the formation of actin stress fibers and focal adhesions and enhanced cell motility. These effects were, however, ablated by an inhibitor of the Rho-associated protein kinase. Importantly, activation of DLC1 by tensin3 or its actin-binding domain drastically reduced the anchorage-independent growth of transformed cells. Our study therefore links dynamic regulation of tensin family members by EGF to Rho-GAP through DLC1 and suggests that the tensin-DLC1-RhoA signaling axis plays an important role in tumorigenesis and cancer metastasis, and may be explored for cancer intervention.
Project description:Deleted in liver cancer 1 (DLC1) serves as an important RhoGTPase activating protein (RhoGAP) protein that terminates active RhoA signaling in human cancers. Increasing evidence has demonstrated that the tumor suppressive activity of DLC1 depends not only on RhoGAP activity, but also relies on proper focal adhesion localization through its interaction with tensin family proteins. Recently, there are reports showing that DLC1 can also be found in the nucleus; however, the existence and the relative tumor suppressive activity of nuclear DLC1 have never been clearly addressed.We herein provide new evidence that DLC1 protein, which predominantly associated with focal adhesions and localized in cytosol, dynamically shuttled between cytoplasm and nucleus. Treatment of cells with nuclear export blocker, Leptomycin B (LMB), retained DLC1 in the nucleus. To understand the nuclear entry of DLC1, we identified amino acids 600-700 of DLC1 as a novel region that is important for its nuclear localization. The tumor suppressive activity of nuclear DLC1 was directly assessed by employing a nuclear localization signal (NLS) fusion variant of DLC1 (NLS-DLC1) with preferential nuclear localization. In SMMC-7721 HCC cells, expression of NLS-DLC1 failed to suppress colony formation and actin stress fiber formation in vitro. The abrogated tumor suppressive activity of nuclear DLC1 was demonstrated for the first time in vivo by subcutaneously injecting p53(-/-) RasV12 hepatoblasts with stable NLS-DLC1 expression in nude mice. The injected hepatoblasts with NLS-DLC1 expression effectively formed tumors when compared with the non-nuclear targeted DLC1.Our study identified a novel region responsible for the nuclear entry of DLC1 and demonstrated the functional difference of DLC1 in different cellular compartments both in vitro and in vivo.
Project description:Megakaryoblastic leukaemia 1 and 2 (MKL1/2) are coactivators of the transcription factor serum response factor (SRF). Here, we provide evidence that depletion of MKL1 and 2 abolishes hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) xenograft growth. Loss of the tumour suppressor deleted in liver cancer 1 (DLC1) and the subsequent activation of RhoA were prerequisites for MKL1/2 knockdown-mediated growth arrest. We identified oncogene-induced senescence as the molecular mechanism underlying the anti-proliferative effect of MKL1/2 knockdown. MKL1/2 depletion resulted in Ras activation, elevated p16 expression and hypophosphorylation of the retinoblastoma (Rb) protein in DLC1-deficient HCC cells. Interestingly, reconstitution of HuH7 HCC cells with DLC1 also induced senescence. Evaluation of the therapeutic efficacy of MKL1/2 knockdown in vivo revealed that systemic treatment of nude mice bearing HuH7 tumour xenografts with MKL1/2 siRNAs complexed with polyethylenimine (PEI) completely abolished tumour growth. The regression of the xenografts was associated with senescence. Importantly, PEI-complexed MKL1 siRNA alone was sufficient for complete abrogation of HCC xenograft growth. Thus, MKL1/2 represent promising novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of HCCs characterized by DLC1 loss.
Project description:Members of the intersectin (ITSN) family of scaffold proteins consist of multiple modular domains, each with distinct ligand preferences. Although ITSNs were initially implicated in the regulation of endocytosis, subsequent studies have revealed a more complex role for these scaffold proteins in regulation of additional biochemical pathways. In this study, we performed a high throughput yeast two-hybrid screen to identify additional pathways regulated by these scaffolds. Although several known ITSN binding partners were identified, we isolated more than 100 new targets for the two mammalian ITSN proteins, ITSN1 and ITSN2. We present the characterization of several of these new targets which implicate ITSNs in the regulation of the Rab and Arf GTPase pathways as well as regulation of the disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) interactome. In addition, we demonstrate that ITSN proteins form homomeric and heteromeric complexes with each other revealing an added level of complexity in the function of these evolutionarily conserved scaffolds.