Asparagine starvation on histone methylation and gene expression
ABSTRACT: We are determining the impact of asparagine starvation on histone H3K4 trimethylation deposition across the genome and how they may affect the gene expression. Overall design: RS4;11 cells were cultured in complete medium, asparagine-free medium or asparagine-free medium supplemented with 10 uM ferric nitrate for 24 hours. Whole cell RNA was collrected for RNA-seq and nuclear extracts were subjected to H3K4me3 ChIP-seq.
Project description:We will report the gene expression changes following asparagine depletion in human ALL cell line, RS4;11 Overall design: RNA was extracted from cells 16 hours post asparagine withdrawal from the tissue-culturing medium
Project description:Glutamine, in the presence of alpha-oxoglutarate, stimulates nicotinamide nucleotide oxidation by crude extracts of pea roots and leads to a reductant-dependent formation of glutamate. Commercially available asparagine also stimulates nicotinamide nucleotide oxidation in the presence of alpha-oxoglutarate, but the reaction causing the stimulation can occur in the absence of a reductant, is inhibited by transaminase inhibitors, and is additive to the glutamine reaction. The asparagine used was found to be contaminated with aspartate. Repurified asparagine, chromatographically free of aspartate, did not stimulate the rate of nicotinamide nucleotide oxidation, and it is probable that the original stimulation was due to aspartate contamination. It is concluded that pea-root glutamine (amide)-alpha-oxoglutarate aminotransferase (glutamate synthase), in common with the enzyme in leaves, is specific for glutamine as the N donor and alpha-oxoglutarate as the N acceptor. The significance of the enzyme in conjunction with glutamine synthetase in the assimilation of nitrate by roots is discussed.
Project description:N4-Ethyl-L-[u-14C]asparagine and L-[U-14C]aspartate give identical metabolites, mainly intermediates of the tricarboxylic acid cycle and related amino acids, in whole cells of Pseudomonas stutzeri. The labelled asparagine derivative is converted into [14C]-aspartate by cell-free extracts, and this reaction, which has an optimum pH of 8.8 +/- 0.2, is neither inhibited by unlabelled asparagine nor enhanced by unlabelled 2-oxoglutarate. No labelled keto acid corresponding to N4-ethylasparagine was detected in either whole cells or cell-free extracts. Thus N4-ethyl-L-asparagine, like asparagine, must be broken down by hydrolysis, at least in this bacterium.
Project description:Asparagine synthetase (AS) catalyzes the ATP-dependent conversion of aspartate into asparagine using ammonia or glutamine as nitrogen source. There are two distinct types of AS, asparagine synthetase A (AS-A), known as strictly ammonia-dependent, and asparagine synthetase B (AS-B), which can use either ammonia or glutamine. The absence of AS-A in humans, and its presence in trypanosomes, suggested AS-A as a potential drug target that deserved further investigation. We report the presence of functional AS-A in Trypanosoma cruzi (TcAS-A) and Trypanosoma brucei (TbAS-A): the purified enzymes convert L-aspartate into L-asparagine in the presence of ATP, ammonia and Mg(2+). TcAS-A and TbAS-A use preferentially ammonia as a nitrogen donor, but surprisingly, can also use glutamine, a characteristic so far never described for any AS-A. TbAS-A knockdown by RNAi didn't affect in vitro growth of bloodstream forms of the parasite. However, growth was significantly impaired when TbAS-A knockdown parasites were cultured in medium with reduced levels of asparagine. As expected, mice infections with induced and non-induced T. brucei RNAi clones were similar to those from wild-type parasites. However, when induced T. brucei RNAi clones were injected in mice undergoing asparaginase treatment, which depletes blood asparagine, the mice exhibited lower parasitemia and a prolonged survival in comparison to similarly-treated mice infected with control parasites. Our results show that TbAS-A can be important under in vivo conditions when asparagine is limiting, but is unlikely to be suitable as a drug target.
Project description:Free asparagine is the precursor for acrylamide, which forms during the baking, toasting and high-temperature processing of foods made from wheat. In this study, CRISPR/Cas9 was used to knock out the asparagine synthetase gene, TaASN2, of wheat (Triticum aestivum) cv. Cadenza. A 4-gRNA polycistronic gene was introduced into wheat embryos by particle bombardment and plants were regenerated. T1 plants derived from 11 of 14 T0 plants were shown to carry edits. Most edits were deletions (up to 173 base pairs), but there were also some single base pair insertions and substitutions. Editing continued beyond the T1 generation. Free asparagine concentrations in the grain of plants carrying edits in all six TaASN2 alleles (both alleles in each genome) were substantially reduced compared with wildtype, with one plant showing a more than 90 % reduction in the T2 seeds. A plant containing edits only in the A genome alleles showed a smaller reduction in free asparagine concentration in the grain, but the concentration was still lower than in wildtype. Free asparagine concentration in the edited plants was also reduced as a proportion of the free amino acid pool. Free asparagine concentration in the T3 seeds remained substantially lower in the edited lines than wildtype, although it was higher than in the T2 seeds, possibly due to stress. In contrast, the concentrations of free glutamine, glutamate and aspartate were all higher in the edited lines than wildtype. Low asparagine seeds showed poor germination but this could be overcome by exogenous application of asparagine.
Project description:Growth of weanling rats was significantly depressed after 8 days of asparagine depletion produced by dietary means or by asparaginase treatment. Moreover, the concentration of free asparagine was significantly lowered in forebrain, skeletal muscle, liver, kidney, spleen and small intestines 3 h after an asparaginase injection, but remained lowered only in forebrain and skeletal muscle after 8 days of enzymic or dietary depletion of asparagine.
Project description:Asparagine synthetase catalyses the transfer of an amino group from glutamine to aspartate to form glutamate and asparagine. The accumulation of free (nonprotein) asparagine in crops has implications for food safety because free asparagine is the precursor for acrylamide, a carcinogenic contaminant that forms during high-temperature cooking and processing. Here we review publicly available genome data for asparagine synthetase genes from species of the Pooideae subfamily, including bread wheat and related wheat species (<i>Triticum</i> and <i>Aegilops</i> spp.), barley (<i>Hordeum vulgare</i>) and rye (<i>Secale cereale</i>) of the Triticeae tribe. Also from the Pooideae subfamily: brachypodium (<i>Brachypodium dIstachyon</i>) of the Brachypodiae tribe. More diverse species are also included, comprising sorghum (<i>Sorghum bicolor</i>) and maize (<i>Zea mays</i>) of the Panicoideae subfamily and rice (<i>Oryza sativa</i>) of the Ehrhartoideae subfamily. The asparagine synthetase gene families of the Triticeae species each comprise five genes per genome, with the genes assigned to four groups: 1, 2, 3 (subdivided into 3.1 and 3.2) and 4. Each species has a single gene per genome in each group, except that some bread wheat varieties (genomes AABBDD) and emmer wheat (<i>Triticum dicoccoides</i>; genomes AABB) lack a group 2 gene in the B genome. This raises questions about the ancestry of cultivated pasta wheat and the B genome donor of bread wheat, suggesting that the hybridisation event that gave rise to hexaploid bread wheat occurred more than once. In phylogenetic analyses, genes from the other species cluster with the Triticeae genes, but brachypodium, sorghum and maize lack a group 2 gene, while rice has only two genes, one group 3 and one group 4. This means that <i>TaASN2</i>, the most highly expressed asparagine synthetase gene in wheat grain, has no equivalent in maize, rice, sorghum or brachypodium. An evolutionary pathway is proposed in which a series of gene duplications gave rise to the five genes found in modern Triticeae species.
Project description:Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium is the only organism demonstrated to utilize fructose-asparagine (F-Asn) as a source of carbon and nitrogen. In this report, we first used a bioinformatics approach to identify other microorganisms that encode homologs of the Salmonella F-Asn utilization enzymes FraB (deglycase), FraD (kinase), and FraE (asparaginase). These candidate organisms were then tested with up to four different methods to confirm their ability to utilize F-Asn. The easiest and most broadly applicable method utilized a biological toxicity assay, which is based on the observation that F-Asn is toxic to a Salmonella fraB mutant. Candidate organisms were grown in a rich medium containing F-Asn, and depletion of F-Asn from the medium was inferred by the growth of a Salmonella fraB mutant in that same medium. For select organisms, the toxicity assay was cross-validated by direct mass spectrometry-aided measurement of F-Asn in the spent-culture media and through demonstration of FraB and FraD enzyme activity in cellular extracts. For prototrophs, F-Asn utilization was additionally confirmed by growth in a minimal medium containing F-Asn as the sole carbon source. Collectively, these studies established that Clostridiumbolteae, Clostridium acetobutylicum, and Clostridium clostridioforme can utilize F-Asn, but Clostridium difficile cannot; Klebsiella oxytoca and some Klebsiella pneumoniae subspecies can utilize F-Asn; and some Citrobacter rodentium and Citrobacter freundii strains can also utilize F-Asn. Within Salmonella enterica, the host-adapted serovars Typhi and Paratyphi A have lost the ability to utilize F-Asn.IMPORTANCE Fructose-asparagine (F-Asn) is a precursor to acrylamide that is found in human foods, and it is also a nutrient source for Salmonella enterica, a foodborne pathogen. Here, we determined that among the normal intestinal microbiota, there are species of Clostridium that encode the enzymes required for F-Asn utilization. Using complementary experimental approaches, we have confirmed that three members of Clostridium, two members of Klebsiella, and two members of Citrobacter can indeed utilize F-Asn. The Clostridium spp. likely compete with Salmonella for F-Asn in the gut and contribute to competitive exclusion. FraB, one of the enzymes in the F-Asn utilization pathway, is a potential drug target because inhibition of this enzyme leads to the accumulation of a toxic metabolite that inhibits the growth of Salmonella species. This study identifies the potential off-target organisms that need to be considered when developing therapeutics directed at FraB.
Project description:Viruses actively interact with host metabolism because viral replication relies on host cells to provide nutrients and energy. Vaccinia virus (VACV; the prototype poxvirus) prefers glutamine to glucose for efficient replication to the extent that VACV replication is hindered in glutamine-free medium. Remarkably, our data show that VACV replication can be fully rescued from glutamine depletion by asparagine supplementation. By global metabolic profiling, as well as genetic and chemical manipulation of the asparagine supply, we provide evidence demonstrating that the production of asparagine, which exclusively requires glutamine for biosynthesis, accounts for VACV's preference of glutamine to glucose rather than glutamine's superiority over glucose in feeding the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. Furthermore, we show that sufficient asparagine supply is required for efficient VACV protein synthesis. Our study highlights that the asparagine supply, the regulation of which has been evolutionarily tailored in mammalian cells, presents a critical barrier to VACV replication due to a high asparagine content of viral proteins and a rapid demand of viral protein synthesis. The identification of asparagine availability as a critical limiting factor for efficient VACV replication suggests a new direction of antiviral strategy development.IMPORTANCE Viruses rely on their infected host cells to provide nutrients and energy for replication. Vaccinia virus, the prototypic member of the poxviruses, which comprise many significant human and animal pathogens, prefers glutamine to glucose for efficient replication. Here, we show that the preference is not because glutamine is superior to glucose as the carbon source to fuel the tricarboxylic acid cycle for vaccinia virus replication. Rather interestingly, the preference is because the asparagine supply for efficient viral protein synthesis becomes limited in the absence of glutamine, which is necessary for asparagine biosynthesis. We provide further genetic and chemical evidence to demonstrate that asparagine availability plays a critical role in efficient vaccinia virus replication. This discovery identifies a weakness of vaccinia virus and suggests a possible direction to intervene in poxvirus infection.
Project description:Asparagine synthetase (ASNS) catalyses the ATP-dependent conversion of aspartate to asparagine. However, both the regulation and biological functions of asparagine in tumour cells remain largely unknown. Here, we report that p53 suppresses asparagine synthesis through the transcriptional downregulation of ASNS expression and disrupts asparagine-aspartate homeostasis, leading to lymphoma and colon tumour growth inhibition in vivo and in vitro. Moreover, the removal of asparagine from culture medium or the inhibition of ASNS impairs cell proliferation and induces p53/p21-dependent senescence and cell cycle arrest. Mechanistically, asparagine and aspartate regulate AMPK-mediated p53 activation by physically binding to LKB1 and oppositely modulating LKB1 activity. Thus, we found that p53 regulates asparagine metabolism and dictates cell survival by generating an auto-amplification loop via asparagine-aspartate-mediated LKB1-AMPK signalling. Our findings highlight a role for LKB1 in sensing asparagine and aspartate and connect asparagine metabolism to the cellular signalling transduction network that modulates cell survival.