Insight into the relationship between aryl-hydrocarbon receptor and ?-catenin in human colon cancer cells.
ABSTRACT: ?-Catenin is a multi-functional protein involved in cell adhesion and signal transduction and has a critical role in colorectal cancer development. ?-Catenin positively regulates the aryl-hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) mediated signal by both induction of AhR expression and enhancement of AhR-dependent gene induction. Conversely, it was reported that AhR negatively regulates the ?-catenin signal via ubiquitination and subsequent degradation in a ligand dependent manner. However, there have been conflicting data among previous studies regarding the relationship between these two proteins. In this report, we conducted confirmatory studies dissecting the relationship between AhR and ?-catenin. We did not observe ?-catenin degradation by AhR ligands in several colon cancer cell lines. Reporter assays revealed that the AhR ligand did not alter TcF/?-catenin dependent transcription. Yeast and mammalian two-hybrid assays failed to reconstruct the interaction of ?-catenin and AhR even when other factors, Arnt, CUL4B, and DDB1, were co-expressed additionally. Independently to induction of AhR expression, ?-catenin enhanced AhR-dependent transcriptional activation via the xenobiotic response element (XRE). Coimmunoprecipitation detected the formation of a ?-catenin and ligand-activated AhR complex, which was thought to reflect the ?-catenin mediated enhancement of the AhR signaling. Overall, we could only confirm unidirectional interaction, which is positive regulation of the AhR signal by ?-catenin. These results suggested that data from previous reports on the degradation of ?-catenin via liganded AhR warrants further investigation to yield clarity in the field.
Project description:The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) is a ligand-dependent transcription factor. It heterodimerizes with aryl hydrocarbon nuclear translocator, binds to the xenobiotic-responsive element (XRE), and enhances the transcription of genes encoding xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes. AHR also plays important roles in the inhibition of intestinal carcinogenesis and the modulation of gut immunity. It is very important to screen for AHR-activating compounds because those are expected to produce the AHR-mediated physiological functions. Until now, AHR-mediated transcriptional activity represented by the transcriptional activity of CYP1A1 in luciferase assay has been applied as a screening procedure for AHR-activating compounds. However, the AHR-mediated transcriptional activity did not necessarily correspond with the CYP1A1 transcriptional activity. To evaluate AHR-mediated transcriptional activity more specifically, and to screen for AHR-activating compounds, we establish a stable AHR-responsive HepG2 cell line by co-transfection of an AHR expression vector and an AHR-responsive vector (pGL3-XRE) containing a luciferase gene and three tandemly arranged XRE elements into a human hepatoma derived cell line, HepG2. The induction of luciferase activity in the stable AHR-responsive HepG2 cell line by typical AHR activators occurred in time- and concentration-dependent manners. By assessing the AHR target genes CYP1A1, UGT1A1, and ABCG2, an AHR activator-mediated induction was observed at mRNA level. Furthermore, the AHR activator-mediated induction of luciferase activity was positively correlated with the mRNA levels of CYP1A1, UGT1A1, and ABCG2. These findings verified the usefulness of the established stable AHR-responsive HepG2 cell line for the screening of AHR-activating compounds.
Project description:Ah receptor (AhR) is a ligand-activated transcription factor that mediates pleiotropic effects of environmental pollutants such as 2,3, 7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin on host animals. In addition to induction of drug-metabolizing enzymes, the liganded AhR complex was found to activate gene expression of a factor designated AhR repressor (AhRR), which inhibits AhR function by competing with AhR for dimerizing with Arnt and binding to the XRE sequence. Thus, AhR and AhRR form a regulatory circuit in the xenobiotic signal transduction pathway and provide a novel mechanism of regulation of AhR function that may determine tissue-specific sensitivity to environmental pollutants.
Project description:The defense against oxidative stress is a critical feature that prevents cellular and DNA damage. UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) catalyze the glucuronidation of xenobiotics, mutagens, and reactive metabolites and thus act as indirect antioxidants. Aim of this study was to elucidate the regulation of UGTs expressed in the mucosa of the gastrointestinal tract by xenobiotics and the main mediator of antioxidant defense, Nrf2 (nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2). Xenobiotic (XRE) and antioxidant (ARE) response elements were detected in the promoters of UGT1A8, UGT1A9, and UGT1A10. Reporter gene experiments demonstrated XRE-mediated induction by dioxin in addition to tert-butylhydroquinone (ARE)-mediated induction of UGT1A8 and UGT1A10, which are expressed in extrahepatic tissue in humans in vivo. The responsible XRE and ARE motifs were identified by mutagenesis. Small interfering RNA knockdown, electrophoretic mobility shifts, and supershifts identified a functional interaction of Nrf2 and the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR). Induction of UGT1A8 and UGT1A10 requires Nrf2 and AhR. It proceeds by utilizing XRE- as well as ARE-binding motifs. In summary, we demonstrate the coordinated AhR- and Nrf2-dependent transcriptional regulation of human UGT1As. Cellular protection by glucuronidation is thus inducible by xenobiotics via AhR and by oxidative metabolites via Nrf2 linking glucuronidation to cellular protection and defense against oxidative stress.
Project description:The Aryl hydrocarbon Receptor (AhR) is a signal regulated transcription factor, which is canonically activated by the direct binding of xenobiotics. In addition, switching cells from adherent to suspension culture also activates the AhR, representing a non-xenobiotic, physiological activation of AhR signaling. Here, we show that the AhR is recruited to target gene enhancers in both ligand (YH439) treated and suspension cells, suggesting a common mechanism of target gene induction between these two routes of AhR activation. However, gene expression profiles critically differ between xenobiotic and suspension activated AhR signaling. Por, and Cldnd1 were regulated predominately by ligand treatments, while in contrast, ApoER2 and Ganc were regulated predominately by the suspension condition. Classic xenobiotic metabolizing AhR targets such as Cyp1a1, Cyp1b1, and Nqo1 were regulated by both ligand and suspension conditions. Temporal expression patterns of AhR target genes were also found to vary, with examples of transient activation, transient repression, or sustained alterations in expression. Furthermore, sequence analysis coupled with ChIP assays and reporter gene analysis identified a functional XRE (xenobiotic response element) within the mouse Tiparp gene that features a concatemer of 4 XRE cores (GCGTG) residing in the first intron ~1.2kb downstream of the Tiparp transcription start site. Our data suggest that this XRE concatemer site concurrently regulates the expression of both Tiparp gene and its cis anti-sense non-coding RNA following ligand or suspension induced AhR activation. This work lends novel insights into how AhR signaling drives different transcriptional programs via the ligand versus suspension modes of activation. Reference: Murray IA et al. (2005) Evidence that ligand binding is a key determinant of Ah receptor-mediated transcriptional activity. Arch Biochem Biophys 442(1):59-71. Reference: Monk SA et al. (2001) Transient expression of CYP1A1 in rat epithelial cells cultured in suspension. Arch Biochem Biophys 393(1):154-162. Reference: Chua SW et atl. (2006) A novel normalization method for effective removal of systematic variation in microarray data. Nucleic acids research 34(5):e38. 18 microarray samples consisting of AhR null and reconstituted hepatocytes subjected to 10μM YH439, 0.1% DMSO carrier control or grown in suspension culture for 8 hours in 3 biologial replicates.
Project description:The toxic effects of dioxins and related compounds (DRCs) are mediated by the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR). Our previous study identified AHR1 and AHR2 genes from the red seabream (Pagrus major). Moreover, we found that AHR2 mRNA levels were notably elevated by 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) exposure in the early life stage of red seabream embryos, while AHR1 mRNA level was not altered. In this study, to investigate the regulatory mechanism of these AHR transcripts, we cloned and characterized 5'-flanking regions of AHR1 and AHR2 genes. Both of the 5'-flanking regions in these AHR genes contained three potential xenobiotic-responsive elements (XREs). To assess whether the 5'-flanking region is transactivated by rsAHR1 and rsAHR2 proteins, we measured the transactivation potency of the luciferase reporter plasmids containing the 5'-flanking regions by AHR1 and AHR2 proteins that were transiently co-expressed in COS-7. Only reporter plasmid (pGL4-rsAHR2-3XREs) that contained three putative XRE sites in the 5'-flanking region of AHR2 gene showed a clear TCDD dose-dependent transactivation by AHR1 and AHR2 proteins. TCDD-EC50 values for the rsAHR2-derived XRE transactivation were 1.3 and 1.4 nM for AHR1 and AHR2, respectively. These results suggest that the putative XREs of AHR2 gene have a function for AHR1- and AHR2-mediated transactivation, supporting our in ovo observation of an induction of AHR2 mRNA levels by TCDD exposure. Mutations in XREs of AHR2 gene led to a decrease in luciferase induction. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay showed that XRE1, the closest XRE from the start codon in AHR2 gene, is mainly responsible for the binding with TCDD-activated AHR. This suggests that TCDD-activated AHR1 and AHR2 up-regulate the AHR2 mRNA levels and this auto-induced AHR2 may amplify the signal transduction of its downstream targets including CYP1A in the red seabream.
Project description:Transgenic mice expressing a constitutively active form of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor in keratinocytes (AhR-CA mice) develop severe dermatitis that substantially recapitulates the pathology of human atopic dermatitis. The neurotrophic factor artemin (Artn) is highly expressed in the epidermis of AhR-CA mice and causes hypersensitivity to itch (alloknesis) by elongating nerves into the epidermis. However, whether the Artn gene is regulated directly by AhR or indirectly through complex regulation associated with AhR remains unclear. To this end, we previously conducted chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing analyses of the Artn locus and found a xenobiotic response element (XRE) motif located far upstream (52?kb) of the gene. Therefore, in this study, we addressed whether the XRE actually regulates the Artn gene expression by deleting the region containing the motif. We generated two lines of Artn?XRE mice. In the mouse epidermis, inducible expression of the Artn gene by the AhR agonist 3-methylcholanthrene was substantially suppressed compared to that in wild-type mice. Importantly, in AhR-CA::Artn?XRE mice, Artn expression was significantly suppressed, and alloknesis was improved. These results demonstrate that the Artn gene is indeed regulated by the distal XRE-containing enhancer, and alloknesis in AhR-CA mice is provoked by the AhR-mediated direct induction of the Artn gene.
Project description:Carbonyl reductase 1 (CBR1) reduces various xenobiotic carbonyl substrates to corresponding alcohol metabolites. Here we demonstrated that benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P), a potent pro-carcinogen and predominant polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) compound in cigarette smoke and air pollutants, upregulates CBR1 gene expression in vitro and in vivo, and that a proximal xenobiotic response element (XRE) motif (????XRE) mediates the induction effect of B[a]P. First, we observed 46% and 50% increases in CBR1 mRNA and CBR1 protein levels, respectively, in human lung tissue samples from smokers compared to never-smokers. Second, we detected 3.0-fold (p<0.0001) induction of CBR1 mRNA and 1.5-fold (p<0.01) induction of CBR1 protein levels in cells of the human lung cancer cell line A549 incubated with 2.5 ?M B[a]P for 24h. Third, results from experiments with CBR1 promoter constructs indicated that a proximal XRE motif ????XRE) mediates induction of reporter activity in response to B[a]P. Furthermore, we detected enhanced nuclear translocation of aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) following B[a]P exposure in A549 cells. Finally, we demonstrated increased binding of specific protein complexes to ????XRE in nuclear extracts from B[a]P-treated cells and the presence of the AhR/Arnt complex in the specific nuclear protein ????XRE complexes.
Project description:Intestinal cancer is one of the most common human cancers. Aberrant activation of the canonical Wnt signaling cascade, for example, caused by adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) gene mutations, leads to increased stabilization and accumulation of beta-catenin, resulting in initiation of intestinal carcinogenesis. The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) has dual roles in regulating intracellular protein levels both as a ligand-activated transcription factor and as a ligand-dependent E3 ubiquitin ligase. Here, we show that the AhR E3 ubiquitin ligase has a role in suppression of intestinal carcinogenesis by a previously undescribed ligand-dependent beta-catenin degradation pathway that is independent of and parallel to the APC system. This function of AhR is activated by both xenobiotics and natural AhR ligands, such as indole derivatives that are converted from dietary tryptophan and glucosinolates by intestinal microbes, and suppresses intestinal tumor development in Apc(Min/+) mice. These findings suggest that chemoprevention with naturally-occurring and chemically-designed AhR ligands can be used to successfully prevent intestinal cancers.
Project description:The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), a regulator of xenobiotic toxicity, is a member of the eukaryotic Per-Arnt-Sim domain protein family of transcription factors. Recent evidence identified a novel AhR DNA recognition sequence called the nonconsensus xenobiotic response element (NC-XRE). AhR binding to the NC-XRE in response to activation by the canonical ligand 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin resulted in concomitant recruitment of carbamoyl phosphate synthase 1 (CPS1) to the NC-XRE. Studies presented here demonstrate that CPS1 is a bona fide nuclear protein involved in homocitrullination (hcit), including a key lysine residue on histone H1 (H1K34hcit). H1K34hcit represents a hitherto unknown epigenetic mark implicated in enhanced gene expression of the peptidylarginine deiminase 2 gene, itself a chromatin-modifying protein. Collectively, our data suggest that AhR activation promotes CPS1 recruitment to DNA enhancer sites in the genome, resulting in a specific enzyme-independent post-translational modification of the linker histone H1 protein (H1K34hcit), pivotal in altering local chromatin structure and transcriptional activation.
Project description:Aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) ligands are important for gastrointestinal health and play a role in gut inflammation and the induction of T regulatory cells, and the short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) butyrate, propionate and acetate also induce similar protective responses. Initial studies with butyrate demonstrated that this compound significantly increased expression of Ah-responsive genes such as Cyp1a1/CYP1A1 in YAMC mouse colonocytes and Caco-2 human colon cancer cell lines. Butyrate synergistically enhanced AhR ligand-induced Cyp1a1/CYP1A1 in these cells with comparable enhancement being observed for 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) and also microbiota-derived AhR ligands tryptamine, indole and 1,4-dihydroxy-2-naphthoic acid (DHNA). The effects of butyrate on enhancing induction of Cyp1b1/CYP1B1, AhR repressor (Ahrr/AhRR) and TCDD-inducible poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase (Tiparp/TiPARP) by AhR ligands were gene- and cell context-dependent with the Caco-2 cells being the most responsive cell line. Like butyrate and propionate, the prototypical hydroxyamic acid-derived histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors Panobinostat and Vorinostat also enhanced AhR ligand-mediated induction and this was accompanied by enhanced histone acetylation. Acetate also enhanced basal and ligand-inducible Ah responsiveness and histone acetylation, demonstrating that acetate was an HDAC inhibitor. These results demonstrate SCFA-AhR ligand interactions in YAMC and Caco-2 cells where SCFAs synergistically enhance basal and ligand-induced expression of AhR-responsive genes.