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Sirtuins are NAD-dependent protein deacylases that regulate several aspects of metabolism and aging. In contrast to the other mammalian sirtuins, the primary enzymatic activity of mitochondrial sirtuin 4 (SIRT4) and its overall role in metabolic control have remained enigmatic. Using a combination of phylogenetics, structural biology, and enzymology, we show that SIRT4 removes three acyl moieties from lysine residues: methylglutaryl (MG)-, hydroxymethylglutaryl (HMG)-, and 3-methylglutaconyl (MGc)-lysine. The metabolites leading to these post-translational modifications are intermediates in leucine oxidation, and we show a primary role for SIRT4 in controlling this pathway in mice. Furthermore, we find that dysregulated leucine metabolism in SIRT4KO mice leads to elevated basal and stimulated insulin secretion, which progressively develops into glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. These findings identify a robust enzymatic activity for SIRT4, uncover a mechanism controlling branched-chain amino acid flux, and position SIRT4 as a crucial player maintaining insulin secretion and glucose homeostasis during aging.
Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Cellular proteins rely on reversible redox reactions to establish and maintain biological structure and function. How redox catabolic (NAD+/NADH) and anabolic (NADP+/NADPH) processes integrate during metabolism to maintain cellular redox homoeostasis, however, is unknown. The present work identifies a continuously cycling mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm)-dependent redox circuit between the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDHC) and nicotinamide nucleotide transhydrogenase (NNT). PDHC is shown to produce H2O2 in relation to reducing pressure within the complex. The H2O2 produced, however, is effectively masked by a continuously cycling redox circuit that links, via glutathione/thioredoxin, to NNT, which catalyses the regeneration of NADPH from NADH at the expense of ΔΨm. The net effect is an automatic fine-tuning of NNT-mediated energy expenditure to metabolic balance at the level of PDHC. In mitochondria, genetic or pharmacological disruptions in the PDHC-NNT redox circuit negate counterbalance changes in energy expenditure. At the whole animal level, mice lacking functional NNT (C57BL/6J) are characterized by lower energy-expenditure rates, consistent with their well-known susceptibility to diet-induced obesity. These findings suggest the integration of redox sensing of metabolic balance with compensatory changes in energy expenditure provides a potential mechanism by which cellular redox homoeostasis is maintained and body weight is defended during periods of positive and negative energy balance.
PrimPol is a recently identified polymerase involved in eukaryotic DNA damage tolerance, employed in both re-priming and translesion synthesis mechanisms to bypass nuclear and mitochondrial DNA lesions. In this report, we investigate how the enzymatic activities of human PrimPol are regulated. We show that, unlike other TLS polymerases, PrimPol is not stimulated by PCNA and does not interact with it in vivo. We identify that PrimPol interacts with both of the major single-strand binding proteins, RPA and mtSSB in vivo. Using NMR spectroscopy, we characterize the domains responsible for the PrimPol-RPA interaction, revealing that PrimPol binds directly to the N-terminal domain of RPA70. In contrast to the established role of SSBs in stimulating replicative polymerases, we find that SSBs significantly limit the primase and polymerase activities of PrimPol. To identify the requirement for this regulation, we employed two forward mutation assays to characterize PrimPol's replication fidelity. We find that PrimPol is a mutagenic polymerase, with a unique error specificity that is highly biased towards insertion-deletion errors. Given the error-prone disposition of PrimPol, we propose a mechanism whereby SSBs greatly restrict the contribution of this enzyme to DNA replication at stalled forks, thus reducing the mutagenic potential of PrimPol during genome replication.
© The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.
Mitochondrial proteins are coded by nuclear (nDNA) and mitochondrial (mtDNA) genes, implying a complex cross-talk between the two genomes. Here we investigated the diversity displayed in 104 nuclear-coded mitochondrial proteins from 1,092 individuals from the 1000 Genomes dataset, in order to evaluate if these genes are under the effects of purifying selection and how that selection compares with their mitochondrial encoded counterparts. Only the very rare variants (frequency < 0.1%) in these nDNA genes are indistinguishable from a random set from all possible variants in terms of predicted pathogenicity score, but more frequent variants display distinct signs of purifying selection. Comparisons of selection strength indicate stronger selection in the mtDNA genes compared to this set of nDNA genes, accounted for by the high hydrophobicity of the proteins coded by the mtDNA. Most of the predicted pathogenic variants in the nDNA genes were restricted to a single continental population. The proportion of individuals having at least one potential pathogenic mutation in this gene set was significantly lower in Europeans than in Africans and Asians. This difference may reflect demographic asymmetries, since African and Asian populations experienced main expansions in middle Holocene, while in Europeans the main expansions occurred earlier in the post-glacial period.
Anti-apoptosis engineering is an established technique to prolong the viability of mammalian cell cultures used for industrial production of recombinant proteins. However, the effect of overexpressing anti-apoptotic proteins on central carbon metabolism has not been systematically studied. We transfected CHO-S cells to express Bcl-2∆, an engineered anti-apoptotic gene, and selected clones that differed in their Bcl-2∆ expression and caspase activity. (13)C metabolic flux analysis (MFA) was then applied to elucidate the metabolic alterations induced by Bcl-2∆. Expression of Bcl-2Δ reduced lactate accumulation by redirecting the fate of intracellular pyruvate toward mitochondrial oxidation during the lactate-producing phase, and it significantly increased lactate re-uptake during the lactate-consuming phase. This flux redistribution was associated with significant increases in biomass yield, peak viable cell density (VCD), and integrated VCD. Additionally, Bcl-2∆ expression was associated with significant increases in isocitrate dehydrogenase and NADH oxidase activities, both rate-controlling mitochondrial enzymes. This is the first comprehensive (13)C MFA study to demonstrate that expression of anti-apoptotic genes has a significant impact on intracellular metabolic fluxes, especially in controlling the fate of pyruvate carbon, which has important biotechnology applications for reducing lactate accumulation and enhancing productivity in mammalian cell cultures.
Copyright © 2014 International Metabolic Engineering Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Dimethylglycine dehydrogenase (DMGDH) is a mammalian mitochondrial enzyme which plays an important role in the utilization of methyl groups derived from choline. DMGDH is a flavin containing enzyme which catalyzes the oxidative demethylation of dimethylglycine in vitro with the formation of sarcosine (N-methylglycine), hydrogen peroxide and formaldehyde. DMGDH binds tetrahydrofolate (THF) in vivo, which serves as an acceptor of formaldehyde and in the cell the product of the reaction is 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate instead of formaldehyde. To gain insight into the mechanism of the reaction we solved the crystal structures of the recombinant mature and precursor forms of rat DMGDH and DMGDH-THF complexes. Both forms of DMGDH reveal similar kinetic parameters and have the same tertiary structure fold with two domains formed by N- and C-terminal halves of the protein. The active center is located in the N-terminal domain while the THF binding site is located in the C-terminal domain about 40Å from the isoalloxazine ring of FAD. The folate binding site is connected with the enzyme active center via an intramolecular channel. This suggests the possible transfer of the intermediate imine of dimethylglycine from the active center to the bound THF where they could react producing a 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate. Based on the homology of the rat and human DMGDH the structural basis for the mechanism of inactivation of the human DMGDH by naturally occurring His109Arg mutation is proposed.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
As an important class of non-coding regulatory RNAs, microRNAs (miRNAs) play a key role in a range of biological processes. These molecules serve as post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression and their regulatory activity has been implicated in disease pathophysiology and pharmacological traits. We sought to investigate the impact of miRNAs on cellular proliferation to gain insight into the molecular basis of complex traits that depend on cellular growth, including, most prominently, cancer. We examined the relationship between miRNA expression and intrinsic cellular growth (iGrowth) in the HapMap lymphoblastoid cell lines derived from individuals of different ethnic backgrounds. We found a substantial enrichment for miRNAs (53 miRNAs, FDR < 0.05) correlated with cellular proliferation in pooled CEU (Caucasian of northern and western European descent) and YRI (individuals from Ibadan, Nigeria) samples. Specifically, 119 miRNAs (59 %) were significantly correlated with iGrowth in YRI; of these miRNAs, 18 were correlated with iGrowth in CEU. To gain further insight into the effect of miRNAs on cellular proliferation in cancer, we showed that over-expression of miR-22, one of the top iGrowth-associated miRNAs, leads to growth inhibition in an ovarian cancer cell line (SKOV3). Furthermore, over-expression of miR-22 down-regulates the expression of its target genes (MXI1 and SLC25A37) in this ovarian cancer cell line, highlighting an miRNA-mediated regulatory network potentially important for cellular proliferation. Importantly, our study identified miRNAs that can be used as molecular targets in cancer therapy.
Translocator protein 18 kDa (TSPO) is an outer-mitochondrial membrane transporter which has many functions including participation in the mitochondrial permeability transition pore, regulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), production of cellular energy, and is the rate-limiting step in the uptake of cholesterol. TSPO expression is dysregulated during disease pathologies involving changes in tissue energy demands such as cancer, and is up-regulated in activated macrophages during the inflammatory response. Obesity is associated with decreased energy expenditure, mitochondrial dysfunction, and chronic low-grade inflammation which collectively contribute to the development of the Metabolic Syndrome. Therefore, we hypothesized that dysregulation of TSPO in adipose tissue may be a feature of disease pathology in obesity. Radioligand binding studies revealed a significant reduction in TSPO ligand binding sites in mitochondrial extracts from both white (WAT) and brown adipose tissue (BAT) in mouse models of obesity (diet-induced and genetic) compared to control animals. We also confirmed a reduction in TSPO gene expression in whole tissue extracts from WAT and BAT. Immunohistochemistry in WAT confirmed TSPO expression in adipocytes but also revealed high-levels of TSPO expression in WAT macrophages in obese animals. No changes in TSPO expression were observed in WAT or BAT after a 17 hour fast or 4 hour cold exposure. Treatment of mice with the TSPO ligand PK11195 resulted in regulation of metabolic genes in WAT. Together, these results suggest a potential role for TSPO in mediating adipose tissue homeostasis.
OBJECTIVE - The impact of dietary-induced obesity (DIO) on stem cell engraftment and the respective therapeutic potential of stem cell engraftment in DIO have not been reported. The objectives of this study were to examine the impact of DIO on the survival and efficacy of intravenous bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) administration in the conscious C57BL/6 mouse.
METHODS - Male mice consumed either a chow (CH) or high fat (HF, 60% kcal) diet for 18 weeks and were subsequently treated with MSC over a 6-day period. Key measurements included tissue-specific cell engraftment, glucose and insulin sensitivity, inflammation, and oxidative stress.
RESULTS - MSC administration had no effect on inflammatory markers, glucose, or insulin sensitivity. DIO mice showed increases in MSC engraftment in multiple tissues compared with their CH counterparts. Engraftment was increased in the HF liver where MSC administration attenuated DIO-induced oxidative stress. These liver-specific alterations in HF-MSC were associated with increases in stanniocalcin-1 (STC1) and uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2), which contribute to cell survival and modulate mitochondrial bioenergetics.
CONCLUSION - Results suggest that MSC administration in DIO promotes engraftment and mitigates hepatic oxidative stress. These data invite further exploration into the therapeutic potential of stem cells for the treatment of DIO oxidative stress in the liver.
© 2013 The Obesity Society.
Lipid metabolism is tightly controlled by the nutritional state of the organism. Nutrient-rich conditions increase lipogenesis, whereas nutrient deprivation promotes fat oxidation. In this study, we identify the mitochondrial sirtuin, SIRT4, as a regulator of lipid homeostasis. SIRT4 is active in nutrient-replete conditions to repress fatty acid oxidation while promoting lipid anabolism. SIRT4 deacetylates and inhibits malonyl CoA decarboxylase (MCD), an enzyme that produces acetyl CoA from malonyl CoA. Malonyl CoA provides the carbon skeleton for lipogenesis and also inhibits fat oxidation. Mice lacking SIRT4 display elevated MCD activity and decreased malonyl CoA in skeletal muscle and white adipose tissue. Consequently, SIRT4 KO mice display deregulated lipid metabolism, leading to increased exercise tolerance and protection against diet-induced obesity. In sum, this work elucidates SIRT4 as an important regulator of lipid homeostasis, identifies MCD as a SIRT4 target, and deepens our understanding of the malonyl CoA regulatory axis.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.