NRF3-POMP-20S Proteasome Assembly Axis Promotes Cancer Development via Ubiquitin-Independent Proteolysis of p53 and Retinoblastoma Protein.
ABSTRACT: Proteasomes are essential protease complexes that maintain cellular homeostasis, and aberrant proteasomal activity supports cancer development. The regulatory mechanisms and biological function of the ubiquitin-26S proteasome have been studied extensively, while those of the ubiquitin-independent 20S proteasome system remain obscure. Here, we show that the cap 'n' collar (CNC) family transcription factor NRF3 specifically enhances 20S proteasome assembly in cancer cells and that 20S proteasomes contribute to colorectal cancer development through ubiquitin-independent proteolysis of the tumor suppressor p53 and retinoblastoma (Rb) proteins. The NRF3 gene is highly expressed in many cancer tissues and cell lines and is important for cancer cell growth. In cancer cells, NRF3 upregulates the assembly of the 20S proteasome by directly inducing the gene expression of the 20S proteasome maturation protein POMP. Interestingly, NRF3 knockdown not only increases p53 and Rb protein levels but also increases p53 activities for tumor suppression, including cell cycle arrest and induction of apoptosis. Furthermore, protein stability and cell viability assays using two distinct proteasome inhibitor anticancer drugs, the 20S proteasome inhibitor bortezomib and the ubiquitin-activating enzyme E1 inhibitor TAK-243, show that the upregulation of the NRF3-POMP axis leads to ubiquitin-independent proteolysis of p53 and Rb and to impaired sensitivity to bortezomib but not TAK-243. More importantly, the NRF3-POMP axis supports tumorigenesis and metastasis, with higher NRF3/POMP expression levels correlating with poor prognoses in patients with colorectal or rectal adenocarcinoma. These results suggest that the NRF3-POMP-20S proteasome assembly axis is significant for cancer development via ubiquitin-independent proteolysis of tumor suppressor proteins.
Project description:The physiological roles of the NRF2-related transcription factor NRF3 (NFE2L3) have remained unknown for decades. The remarkable development of human cancer genome databases has led to strong suggestions that NRF3 has functional significance in cancer; specifically, high NRF3 mRNA levels are induced in many cancer types, such as colorectal cancer and pancreatic adenocarcinoma, and are associated with poor prognosis. On the basis of this information, the involvement of NRF3 in tumorigenesis and cancer malignancy has been recently proposed. NRF3 confers cancer cells with selective growth advantages by enhancing 20S proteasome assembly through induction of the chaperone gene proteasome maturation protein (POMP) and consequently promoting degradation of the tumor suppressors p53 and retinoblastoma (Rb) in a ubiquitin-independent manner. This new finding offers insight into the proteasomal but not the genetic inactivation mechanism of tumor suppressors. Moreover, NRF3 promotes cancer malignancy-related processes, including metastasis and angiogenesis. Finally, the molecular mechanisms underlying NRF3 activation have been elucidated, and this knowledge is expected to provide many insights that are useful for the development of anticancer drugs that attenuate NRF3 transcriptional activity. Collectively, the evidence indicates that NRF3 confers cells with six so-called "hallmarks of cancer", implying that it exhibits cancer driver gene-like function. This review describes recent research advances regarding the newly discovered addiction of cancer cells to NRF3 compared to NRF2.
Project description:Remarkable upregulation of the NRF2 (NFE2L2)-related transcription factor NRF3 (NFE2L3) in several cancer tissues and its correlation with poor prognosis strongly suggest the physiological function of NRF3 in tumors. Indeed, we had recently uncovered the function of NRF3, which promotes cancer cell proliferation by p53 degradation via the 20S proteasome. Nevertheless, the molecular mechanism underlying the induction of NRF3 gene expression in cancer cells is highly elusive. We herein describe that NRF3 upregulation is induced by the β-catenin/TCF4 complex in colon cancer cells. We first confirmed high NRF3 mRNA expression in human colon cancer specimens. The genome database indicated that the human NRF3 gene possesses a species-conserved WRE sequence (TCF/LEF consensus element), implying that the β-catenin/TCF complex activates NRF3 expression in colon cancer. Consistently, we observed that the β-catenin/TCF4 complex mediates NRF3 expression by binding directly to the WRE site. Furthermore, inducing NRF3 activates cell proliferation and the expression of the glucose transporter GLUT1. The existence of the β-catenin/TCF4-NRF3 axis was also validated in the intestine and organoids of Apc-deficient mice. Finally, the positive correlation between NRF3 and β-catenin target gene expression strongly supports our conclusion. Our findings clearly demonstrate that NRF3 induction in cancer cells is controlled by the Wnt/β-catenin pathway.
Project description:The quality control of proteins mediated by the plasticity of the proteasome system is regulated by the timely and flexible formation of this multisubunit proteolytic enzyme complex. Adaptable biogenesis of the 20S proteasome core complex is therefore of vital importance for adjusting to changing proteolytic requirements. However, the molecular mechanism and the cellular sites of mammalian proteasome formation are still unresolved. By using precursor complex-specific antibodies, we now show that the main steps in 20S core complex formation take place at the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Thereby, the proteasome maturation protein (POMP)--an essential factor of mammalian proteasome biogenesis--interacts with ER membranes, binds to alpha1-7 rings, recruits beta-subunits stepwise and mediates the association of mammalian precursor complexes with the ER. Thus, POMP facilitates the main steps in 20S core complex formation at the ER to coordinate the assembly process and to provide cells with freshly formed proteasomes at their site of function.
Project description:Proteasome activity is frequently enhanced in cancer to accelerate metastasis and tumorigenesis. REG?, a proteasome activator known to promote p53/p21/p16 degradation, is often overexpressed in cancer cells. Here we show that p53/TGF-? signalling inhibits the REG?-20S proteasome pathway by repressing REG? expression. Smad3 and p53 interact on the REG? promoter via the p53RE/SBE region. Conversely, mutant p53 binds to the REG? promoter and recruits p300. Importantly, mutant p53 prevents Smad3/N-CoR complex formation on the REG? promoter, which enhances the activity of the REG?-20S proteasome pathway and contributes to mutant p53 gain of function. Depletion of REG? alters the cellular response to p53/TGF-? signalling in drug resistance, proliferation, cell cycle progression and proteasome activity. Moreover, p53 mutations show a positive correlation with REG? expression in cancer samples. These findings suggest that targeting REG?-20S proteasome for cancer therapy may be applicable to human tumours with abnormal p53/Smad protein status. Furthermore, this study demonstrates a link between p53/TGF-? signalling and the REG?-20S proteasome pathway, and provides insight into the REG?/p53 feedback loop.
Project description:All living organisms require protein degradation to terminate biological processes and remove damaged proteins. One such machine is the 20S proteasome, a specialized barrel-shaped and compartmentalized multicatalytic protease. The activity of the 20S proteasome generally requires the binding of regulators/proteasome activators (PAs), which control the entrance of substrates. These include the PA700 (19S complex), which assembles with the 20S and forms the 26S proteasome and allows the efficient degradation of proteins usually labeled by ubiquitin tags, PA200 and PA28, which are involved in proteolysis through ubiquitin-independent mechanisms and PI31, which was initially identified as a 20S inhibitor in vitro. Unlike 20S proteasome, shown to be present in all Eukaryotes and Archaea, the evolutionary history of PAs remained fragmentary. Here, we made a comprehensive survey and phylogenetic analyses of the four types of regulators in 17 clades covering most of the eukaryotic supergroups. We found remarkable conservation of each PA700 subunit in all eukaryotes, indicating that the current complex PA700 structure was already set up in the last eukaryotic common ancestor (LECA). Also present in LECA, PA200, PA28, and PI31 showed a more contrasted evolutionary picture, because many lineages have subsequently lost one or two of them. The paramount conservation of PA700 composition in all eukaryotes and the dynamic evolution of PA200, PA28, and PI31 are discussed in the light of current knowledge on their physiological roles.
Project description:Three proteasome inhibitors have garnered regulatory approvals in various multiple myeloma settings; but drug resistance is an emerging challenge, prompting interest in blocking upstream components of the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway. One such attractive target is the E1 ubiquitin-activating enzyme (UAE); we therefore evaluated the activity of TAK-243, a novel and specific UAE inhibitor. TAK-243 potently suppressed myeloma cell line growth, induced apoptosis, and activated caspases while decreasing the abundance of ubiquitin-protein conjugates. This was accompanied by stabilization of many short-lived proteins, including p53, myeloid cell leukemia 1 (MCL-1), and c-MYC, and activation of the activating transcription factor 6 (ATF-6), inositol-requiring enzyme 1 (IRE-1), and protein kinase RNA-like endoplasmic reticulum (ER) kinase (PERK) arms of the ER stress response pathway, as well as oxidative stress. UAE inhibition showed comparable activity against otherwise isogenic cell lines with wild-type (WT) or deleted p53 despite induction of TP53 signaling in WT cells. Notably, TAK-243 overcame resistance to conventional drugs and novel agents in cell-line models, including bortezomib and carfilzomib resistance, and showed activity against primary cells from relapsed/refractory myeloma patients. In addition, TAK-243 showed strong synergy with a number of antimyeloma agents, including doxorubicin, melphalan, and panobinostat as measured by low combination indices. Finally, TAK-243 was active against a number of in vivo myeloma models in association with activation of ER stress. Taken together, the data support the conclusion that UAE inhibition could be an attractive strategy to move forward to the clinic for patients with relapsed and/or refractory multiple myeloma.
Project description:The proteasome is the key player in targeted degradation of cellular proteins and serves as a therapeutic target for treating several blood malignancies. Although in general, degradation of proteins via the proteasome requires their ubiquitination, a subset of proteins can be degraded independently of their ubiquitination by direct interaction with subunits of the 20S proteasome core. Thus, investigation of the proteasome-associated proteins may help identify novel targets of proteasome degradation and provide important insights into the mechanisms of malignant cell proteostasis. Here, using biochemical purification of proteasomes from multiple myeloma (MM) cells followed by mass-spectrometry we have uncovered 77 proteins in total that specifically interacted with the 20S proteasome via its PSMA3 subunit. Our GST pull-down assays followed by western blots validated the interactions identified by mass-spectrometry. Eleven proteins were confirmed to bind PSMA3 only upon apoptotic conditions induced by a combined treatment with the proteasome inhibitor, bortezomib, and genotoxic drug, doxorubicin. Nine of these eleven proteins contained bioinformatically predicted intrinsically disordered regions thus making them susceptible to ubiquitin-independent degradation. Importantly, among those proteins five interacted with the ubiquitin binding affinity matrix suggesting that these proteins may also be ubiquitinylated and hence degraded via the ubiquitin-dependent pathway. Collectively, these PSMA3-interacting proteins represent novel potential substrates for 20S proteasomes upon apoptosis. Furthermore, these data may shed light on the molecular mechanisms of cellular response to chemotherapy. ABBREVIATIONS:BD: bortezomib/doxorubicin treatment; CDK: cyclin-dependent kinases; CHCA: ?-cyanohydroxycinnamic acid; IDP: intrinsically disordered proteins; IDR: intrinsically disordered regions; IPG: immobilized pI gradient; MALDI TOF/TOF: matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight tandem mass-spectrometry; MM: multiple myeloma; ODC: ornithine decarboxylase; PI: proteasomal inhibitors; PSMA: alpha-type 20S proteasome subunits; PTMs: post-translational modifications; SDS-PAGE: sodium dodecylsulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis; UIP: ubiquitin-independent proteasomal proteolysis.
Project description:The 26S proteasome, a central enzyme for ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis, is a highly complex structure comprising 33 distinct subunits. Recent studies have revealed multiple dedicated chaperones involved in proteasome assembly both in yeast and in mammals. However, none of these chaperones is essential for yeast viability. PAC1 is a mammalian proteasome assembly chaperone that plays a role in the initial assembly of the 20S proteasome, the catalytic core of the 26S proteasome, but does not cause a complete loss of the 20S proteasome when knocked down. Thus, both chaperone-dependent and -independent assembly pathways exist in cells, but the contribution of the chaperone-dependent pathway remains unclear. To elucidate its biological significance in mammals, we generated PAC1 conditional knockout mice. PAC1-null mice exhibited early embryonic lethality, demonstrating that PAC1 is essential for mammalian development, especially for explosive cell proliferation. In quiescent adult hepatocytes, PAC1 is responsible for producing the majority of the 20S proteasome. PAC1-deficient hepatocytes contained normal amounts of the 26S proteasome, but they completely lost the free latent 20S proteasome. They also accumulated ubiquitinated proteins and exhibited premature senescence. Our results demonstrate the importance of the PAC1-dependent assembly pathway and of the latent 20S proteasomes for maintaining cellular integrity.
Project description:The molecular mechanisms of targeted proteolysis in archaea are poorly understood, yet they may have deep evolutionary roots shared with the ubiquitin-proteasome system of eukaryotic cells. Here, we demonstrate in archaea that TBP2, a TATA-binding protein (TBP) modified by ubiquitin-like isopeptide bonds, is phosphorylated and targeted for degradation by proteasomes. Rapid turnover of TBP2 required the functions of UbaA (the E1/MoeB/ThiF homolog of archaea), AAA ATPases (Cdc48/p97 and Rpt types), a type 2 JAB1/MPN/MOV34 metalloenzyme (JAMM/MPN+) homolog (JAMM2), and 20S proteasomes. The ubiquitin-like protein modifier small archaeal modifier protein 2 (SAMP2) stimulated the degradation of TBP2, but SAMP2 itself was not degraded. Analysis of the TBP2 fractions that were not modified by ubiquitin-like linkages revealed that TBP2 had multiple N termini, including Met1-Ser2, Ser2, and Met1-Ser2(p) [where (p) represents phosphorylation]. The evidence suggested that the Met1-Ser2(p) form accumulated in cells that were unable to degrade TBP2. We propose a model in archaea in which the attachment of ubiquitin-like tags can target proteins for degradation by proteasomes and be controlled by N-terminal degrons. In support of a proteolytic mechanism that is energy dependent and recycles the ubiquitin-like protein tags, we find that a network of AAA ATPases and a JAMM/MPN+ metalloprotease are required, in addition to 20S proteasomes, for controlled intracellular proteolysis.This study advances the fundamental knowledge of signal-guided proteolysis in archaea and sheds light on components that are related to the ubiquitin-proteasome system of eukaryotes. In archaea, the ubiquitin-like proteasome system is found to require function of an E1/MoeB/ThiF homolog, a type 2 JAMM/MPN+ metalloprotease, and a network of AAA ATPases for the targeted destruction of proteins. We provide evidence that the attachment of the ubiquitin-like protein is controlled by an N-terminal degron and stimulates proteasome-mediated proteolysis.
Project description:The critical role of the ubiquitin-26S proteasome system in regulation of protein homeostasis in eukaryotes is well established. In contrast, the impact of the ubiquitin-independent proteolytic activity of proteasomes is poorly understood. Through biochemical analysis of mammalian lysates, we find that the 20S proteasome, latent in peptide hydrolysis, specifically cleaves more than 20% of all cellular proteins. Thirty intrinsic proteasome substrates (IPSs) were identified and in vitro studies of their processing revealed that cleavage occurs at disordered regions, generating stable products encompassing structured domains. The mechanism of IPS recognition is remarkably well conserved in the eukaryotic kingdom, as mammalian and yeast 20S proteasomes exhibit the same target specificity. Further, 26S proteasomes specifically recognize and cleave IPSs at similar sites, independent of ubiquitination, suggesting that disordered regions likely constitute the universal structural signal for IPS proteolysis by proteasomes. Finally, we show that proteasomes contribute to physiological regulation of IPS levels in living cells and the inactivation of ubiquitin-activating enzyme E1 does not prevent IPS degradation. Collectively, these findings suggest a significant contribution of the ubiquitin-independent proteasome degradation pathway to the regulation of protein homeostasis in eukaryotes.