Publications by authors named "Rajappa S Kenchappa"

32 Publications

Protein kinase C and SRC signaling define reciprocally related subgroups of glioblastoma with distinct therapeutic vulnerabilities.

Cell Rep 2021 Nov;37(8):110054

Department of Cancer Biology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA. Electronic address:

We report that atypical protein kinase Cι (PKCι) is an oncogenic driver of glioblastoma (GBM). Deletion or inhibition of PKCι significantly impairs tumor growth and prolongs survival in murine GBM models. GBM cells expressing elevated PKCι signaling are sensitive to PKCι inhibitors, whereas those expressing low PKCι signaling exhibit active SRC signaling and sensitivity to SRC inhibitors. Resistance to the PKCι inhibitor auranofin is associated with activated SRC signaling and response to a SRC inhibitor, whereas resistance to a SRC inhibitor is associated with activated PKCι signaling and sensitivity to auranofin. Interestingly, PKCι- and SRC-dependent cells often co-exist in individual GBM tumors, and treatment of GBM-bearing mice with combined auranofin and SRC inhibitor prolongs survival beyond either drug alone. Thus, we identify PKCι and SRC signaling as distinct therapeutic vulnerabilities that are directly translatable into an improved treatment for GBM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2021.110054DOI Listing
November 2021

Myosin 10 Regulates Invasion, Mitosis, and Metabolic Signaling in Glioblastoma.

iScience 2020 Dec 13;23(12):101802. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

Department of Cancer Biology, Mayo Clinic, 4500 San Pablo Road, Jacksonville, FL 32224, USA.

Invasion and proliferation are defining phenotypes of cancer, and in glioblastoma blocking one stimulates the other, implying that effective therapy must inhibit both, ideally through a single target that is also dispensable for normal tissue function. The molecular motor myosin 10 meets these criteria. Myosin 10 knockout mice can survive to adulthood, implying that normal cells can compensate for its loss; its deletion impairs invasion, slows proliferation, and prolongs survival in murine models of glioblastoma. Myosin 10 deletion also enhances tumor dependency on the DNA damage and the metabolic stress responses and induces synthetic lethality when combined with inhibitors of these processes. Our results thus demonstrate that targeting myosin 10 is active against glioblastoma by itself, synergizes with other clinically available therapeutics, may have acceptable side effects in normal tissues, and has potential as a heretofore unexplored therapeutic approach for this disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2020.101802DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7702012PMC
December 2020

Enhancing Brain Retention of a KIF11 Inhibitor Significantly Improves its Efficacy in a Mouse Model of Glioblastoma.

Sci Rep 2020 04 16;10(1):6524. Epub 2020 Apr 16.

Brain Barriers Research Center, Department of Pharmaceutics, College of Pharmacy, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA.

Glioblastoma, the most lethal primary brain cancer, is extremely proliferative and invasive. Tumor cells at tumor/brain-interface often exist behind a functionally intact blood-brain barrier (BBB), and so are shielded from exposure to therapeutic drug concentrations. An ideal glioblastoma treatment needs to engage targets that drive proliferation as well as invasion, with brain penetrant therapies. One such target is the mitotic kinesin KIF11, which can be inhibited with ispinesib, a potent molecularly-targeted drug. Although, achieving durable brain exposures of ispinesib is critical for adequate tumor cell engagement during mitosis, when tumor cells are vulnerable, for efficacy. Our results demonstrate that the delivery of ispinesib is restricted by P-gp and Bcrp efflux at BBB. Thereby, ispinesib distribution is heterogeneous with concentrations substantially lower in invasive tumor rim (intact BBB) compared to glioblastoma core (disrupted BBB). We further find that elacridar-a P-gp and Bcrp inhibitor-improves brain accumulation of ispinesib, resulting in remarkably reduced tumor growth and extended survival in a rodent model of glioblastoma. Such observations show the benefits and feasibility of pairing a potentially ideal treatment with a compound that improves its brain accumulation, and supports use of this strategy in clinical exploration of cell cycle-targeting therapies in brain cancers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-63494-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7162859PMC
April 2020

Myosin IIA suppresses glioblastoma development in a mechanically sensitive manner.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2019 07 24;116(31):15550-15559. Epub 2019 Jun 24.

Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL 32224;

The ability of glioblastoma to disperse through the brain contributes to its lethality, and blocking this behavior has been an appealing therapeutic approach. Although a number of proinvasive signaling pathways are active in glioblastoma, many are redundant, so targeting one can be overcome by activating another. However, these pathways converge on nonredundant components of the cytoskeleton, and we have shown that inhibiting one of these-the myosin II family of cytoskeletal motors-blocks glioblastoma invasion even with simultaneous activation of multiple upstream promigratory pathways. Myosin IIA and IIB are the most prevalent isoforms of myosin II in glioblastoma, and we now show that codeleting these myosins markedly impairs tumorigenesis and significantly prolongs survival in a rodent model of this disease. However, while targeting just myosin IIA also impairs tumor invasion, it surprisingly increases tumor proliferation in a manner that depends on environmental mechanics. On soft surfaces myosin IIA deletion enhances ERK1/2 activity, while on stiff surfaces it enhances the activity of NFκB, not only in glioblastoma but in triple-negative breast carcinoma and normal keratinocytes as well. We conclude myosin IIA suppresses tumorigenesis in at least two ways that are modulated by the mechanics of the tumor and its stroma. Our results also suggest that inhibiting tumor invasion can enhance tumor proliferation and that effective therapy requires targeting cellular components that drive both proliferation and invasion simultaneously.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1902847116DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6681735PMC
July 2019

BIRC3 is a biomarker of mesenchymal habitat of glioblastoma, and a mediator of survival adaptation in hypoxia-driven glioblastoma habitats.

Sci Rep 2017 08 24;7(1):9350. Epub 2017 Aug 24.

Department of Neuro-Oncology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, 12902 Magnolia Drive, Tampa, FL, 33612, USA.

Tumor hypoxia is an established facilitator of survival adaptation and mesenchymal transformation in glioblastoma (GBM). The underlying mechanisms that direct hypoxia-mediated survival in GBM habitats are unclear. We previously identified BIRC3 as a mediator of therapeutic resistance in GBM to standard temozolomide (TMZ) chemotherapy and radiotherapy (RT). Here we report that BIRC3 is a biomarker of the hypoxia-mediated adaptive mesenchymal phenotype of GBM. Specifically, in the TCGA dataset elevated BIRC3 gene expression was identified as a superior and selective biomarker of mesenchymal GBM versus neural, proneural and classical subtypes. Further, BIRC3 protein was highly expressed in the tumor cell niches compared to the perivascular niche across multiple regions in GBM patient tissue microarrays. Tumor hypoxia was found to mechanistically induce BIRC3 expression through HIF1-alpha signaling in GBM cells. Moreover, in human GBM xenografts robust BIRC3 expression was noted within hypoxic regions of the tumor. Importantly, selective inhibition of BIRC3 reversed therapeutic resistance of GBM cells to RT in hypoxic microenvironments through enhanced activation of caspases. Collectively, we have uncovered a novel role for BIRC3 as a targetable biomarker and mediator of hypoxia-driven habitats in GBM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-09503-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5570925PMC
August 2017

Neuroblast differentiation during development and in neuroblastoma requires KIF1Bβ-mediated transport of TRKA.

Genes Dev 2017 05;31(10):1036-1053

Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research Ltd., SE-17177 Stockholm, Sweden.

We recently identified pathogenic β mutations in sympathetic nervous system malignancies that are defective in developmental apoptosis. Here we deleted β in the mouse sympathetic nervous system and observed impaired sympathetic nervous function and misexpression of genes required for sympathoadrenal lineage differentiation. We discovered that KIF1Bβ is required for nerve growth factor (NGF)-dependent neuronal differentiation through anterograde transport of the NGF receptor TRKA. Moreover, pathogenic β mutations identified in neuroblastoma impair TRKA transport. Expression of neuronal differentiation markers is ablated in both β-deficient mouse neuroblasts and human neuroblastomas that lack KIF1Bβ. Transcriptomic analyses show that unfavorable neuroblastomas resemble mouse sympathetic neuroblasts lacking KIF1Bβ independent of amplification and the loss of genes neighboring on chromosome 1p36. Thus, defective precursor cell differentiation, a common trait of aggressive childhood malignancies, is a pathogenic effect of KIF1Bβ loss in neuroblastomas. Furthermore, neuropathy-associated mutations impede cargo transport, providing a direct link between neuroblastomas and neurodegeneration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/gad.297077.117DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5495120PMC
May 2017

A rare case of leptomeningeal carcinomatosis in a patient with uveal melanoma: case report and review of literature.

Melanoma Res 2016 10;26(5):481-6

Departments of aTumor Biology bNeurooncology cAnatomic Pathology dCutaneous Oncology eMorsani Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory, Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, Tampa fBascom Palmer Eye Institute, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida, USA gDepartment of Oncology, Tom Baker Cancer Center & University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Uveal melanoma is a rare subtype of melanoma, accounting for only 3-5% of all melanoma cases in the USA. Although fewer than 4% of uveal melanoma patients present with metastasis at diagnosis, approximately half will develop metastasis, more than 90% of which disseminate to the liver. Infrequently, a number of malignancies can lead to leptomeningeal metastases, a devastating and terminal complication. In this case report, we present an exceedingly rare case of a patient with uveal melanoma who developed leptomeningeal carcinomatosis as the sole site of metastasis. After conventional methods to diagnose leptomeningeal carcinomatosis fell short, a diagnosis was confirmed on the basis of identification and genomic analysis of melanoma circulating tumor cells in the cerebrospinal fluid.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/CMR.0000000000000274DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5502096PMC
October 2016

XAF1 promotes neuroblastoma tumor suppression and is required for KIF1Bβ-mediated apoptosis.

Oncotarget 2016 Jun;7(23):34229-39

Department of Physiology, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, S117597, Singapore, Singapore.

Neuroblastoma is an aggressive, relapse-prone childhood tumor of the sympathetic nervous system. Current treatment modalities do not fully exploit the genetic basis between the different molecular subtypes and little is known about the targets discovered in recent mutational and genetic studies. Neuroblastomas with poor prognosis are often characterized by 1p36 deletion, containing the kinesin gene KIF1B. Its beta isoform, KIF1Bβ, is required for NGF withdrawal-dependent apoptosis, mediated by the induction of XIAP-associated Factor 1 (XAF1). Here, we showed that XAF1 low expression correlates with poor survival and disease status. KIF1Bβ deletion results in loss of XAF1 expression, suggesting that XAF1 is indeed a downstream target of KIF1Bβ. XAF1 silencing protects from NGF withdrawal and from KIF1Bβ-mediated apoptosis. Overexpression of XAF1 impairs tumor progression whereas knockdown of XAF1 promotes tumor growth, suggesting that XAF1 may be a candidate tumor suppressor in neuroblastoma and its associated pathway may be important for developing future interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.8748DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5085151PMC
June 2016

Managing leptomeningeal melanoma metastases in the era of immune and targeted therapy.

Int J Cancer 2016 09 30;139(6):1195-201. Epub 2016 Apr 30.

The Department of Tumor Biology, Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, Tampa, FL.

Melanoma frequently metastasizes to the brain, with CNS involvement being clinically evident in ∼30% of patients (as high as 75% at autopsy). In ∼5% cases melanoma cells also metastasize to the leptomeninges, the sub-arachnoid space and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Patients with leptomeningeal melanoma metastases (LMM) have the worst prognosis and are characterized by rapid disease progression (mean survival 8-10 weeks) and a death from neurological causes. The recent years have seen tremendous progress in the development of targeted and immune therapies for melanoma that has translated into an increased survival benefit. Despite these gains, the majority of patients fail therapy and there is a suspicion that the brain and the leptomeninges are a "sanctuary" sites for melanoma cells that escape both targeted therapy and immunologic therapies. Emerging evidence suggests that (1) Cancer cells migrating to the CNS may have unique molecular properties and (2) the CNS/leptomeningeal microenvironment represents a pro-survival niche that influences therapeutic response. In this Mini-Review, we will outline the clinical course of LMM development and will describe how the intracranial immune and cellular microenvironments offer both opportunities and challenges for the successful management of this disease. We will further discuss the latest data demonstrating the potential use of BRAF inhibitors and immune therapy in the management of LMM, and will review future potential therapeutic strategies for the management of this most devastating complication of advanced melanoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.30147DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4939138PMC
September 2016

M011L-deficient oncolytic myxoma virus induces apoptosis in brain tumor-initiating cells and enhances survival in a novel immunocompetent mouse model of glioblastoma.

Neuro Oncol 2016 08 8;18(8):1088-1098. Epub 2016 Mar 8.

Department of Neuro-Oncology and Tumor Biology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida (A.P., R.S.K., A.B.E., P.A.F.); Southern Alberta Cancer Research Institute, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada (B.M., F.Z., X.L., E.K., P.A.F.); Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida (M.M.R., G.M.); Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland (K.R.); Department of Immunology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida (S.P.-T.).

Background: Myxoma virus (MYXV) is a promising oncolytic agent and is highly effective against immortalized glioma cells but less effective against brain tumor initiating cells (BTICs), which are believed to mediate glioma development/recurrence. MYXV encodes various proteins to attenuate host cell apoptosis, including an antiapoptotic Bcl-2 homologue known as M011L. Such proteins may limit the ability of MYXV to kill BTICs, which have heightened resistance to apoptosis. We hypothesized that infecting BTICs with an M011L-deficient MYXV construct would overcome BTIC resistance to MYXV.

Methods: We used patient-derived BTICs to evaluate the efficacy of M011L knockout virus (vMyx-M011L-KO) versus wild-type MYXV (vMyx-WT) and characterized the mechanism of virus-induced cell death in vitro. To extend our findings in a novel immunocompetent animal model, we derived, cultured, and characterized a C57Bl/6J murine BTIC (mBTIC0309) from a spontaneous murine glioma and evaluated vMyx-M011L-KO efficacy with and without temozolomide (TMZ) in mBTIC0309-bearing mice.

Results: We demonstrated that vMyx-M011L-KO induces apoptosis in BTICs, dramatically increasing sensitivity to the virus. vMyx-WT failed to induce apoptosis as M011L protein prevented Bax activation and cytochrome c release. In vivo, intracranial implantation of mBTIC0309 generated tumors that closely recapitulated the pathological and molecular profile of human gliomas. Treatment of tumor-bearing mice with vMyx-M011L-KO significantly prolonged survival in immunocompetent-but not immunodeficient-mouse models, an effect that is significantly enhanced in combination with TMZ.

Conclusions: Our data suggest that vMyx-M011L-KO is an effective, well-tolerated, proapoptotic oncolytic virus and a strong candidate for clinical translation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/neuonc/now006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4933479PMC
August 2016

BIRC3 is a novel driver of therapeutic resistance in Glioblastoma.

Sci Rep 2016 Feb 18;6:21710. Epub 2016 Feb 18.

Department of Neuro-Oncology, Moffitt Cancer Center, 12902 Magnolia Drive, Tampa, FL 33612 USA.

Genome-wide analysis of glioblastoma (GBM) reveals pervasive aberrations in apoptotic signaling pathways that collectively contribute to therapeutic resistance. Inhibitors of apoptosis proteins (IAP) exert critical control on the terminal segment of apoptosis leading to apoptosis evasion. In this study, we uncover a unique role for BIRC3, as an IAP that is critical in GBM in response to therapy. Using the TCGA dataset of 524 unique samples, we identify BIRC3 is the only IAP whose differential expression is associated with long-term survival in GBM patients. Using patient tissue samples we further show that BIRC3 expression increases with recurrence. When extrapolated to a preclinical model of a human GBM cell line, we find an increase in BIRC3 expression in response to irradiation (RT) and temozolomide (TMZ) treatment. More importantly, we mechanistically implicate STAT3 and PI3K signaling pathways as drivers of RT-induced up-regulation of BIRC3 expression. Lastly, we demonstrate that both in-vivo and in-vitro BIRC3 up-regulation results in apoptosis evasion and therapeutic resistance in GBM. Collectively, our study identifies a novel translational and targetable role for BIRC3 expression as a predictor of aggressiveness and therapeutic resistance to TMZ and RT mediated by STAT3 and PI3K signaling in GBM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep21710DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4757860PMC
February 2016

The 1p36 Tumor Suppressor KIF 1Bβ Is Required for Calcineurin Activation, Controlling Mitochondrial Fission and Apoptosis.

Dev Cell 2016 Jan;36(2):164-78

Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research Ltd., 17177 Stockholm, Sweden; Department of Microbiology and Tumor and Cell Biology, Karolinska Institutet, 17177 Stockholm, Sweden. Electronic address:

KIF1Bβ is a candidate 1p36 tumor suppressor that regulates apoptosis in the developing sympathetic nervous system. We found that KIF1Bβ activates the Ca(2+)-dependent phosphatase calcineurin (CN) by stabilizing the CN-calmodulin complex, relieving enzymatic autoinhibition and enabling CN substrate recognition. CN is the key mediator of cellular responses to Ca(2+) signals and its deregulation is implicated in cancer, cardiac, neurodegenerative, and immune disease. We show that KIF1Bβ affects mitochondrial dynamics through CN-dependent dephosphorylation of Dynamin-related protein 1 (DRP1), causing mitochondrial fission and apoptosis. Furthermore, KIF1Bβ actuates recognition of all known CN substrates, implying a general mechanism for KIF1Bβ in Ca(2+) signaling and how Ca(2+)-dependent signaling is executed by CN. Pathogenic KIF1Bβ mutations previously identified in neuroblastomas and pheochromocytomas all fail to activate CN or stimulate DRP1 dephosphorylation. Importantly, KIF1Bβ and DRP1 are silenced in 1p36 hemizygous-deleted neuroblastomas, indicating that deregulation of calcineurin and mitochondrial dynamics contributes to high-risk and poor-prognosis neuroblastoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.devcel.2015.12.029DOI Listing
January 2016

In vitro screen of a small molecule inhibitor drug library identifies multiple compounds that synergize with oncolytic myxoma virus against human brain tumor-initiating cells.

Neuro Oncol 2015 Aug 20;17(8):1086-94. Epub 2015 Jan 20.

Southern Alberta Cancer Research Institute, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada (B.A.M., F.J.Z., A.N., X.L, E.U.K, P.A.F.); Department of Pediatrics, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada (A.N.); Department of Oncology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada (A.N., P.A.F.); Department of Physiology & Pharmacology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada (E.U.K.); Department of Neuro-Oncology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida (A.P., R.S.K, P.A.F.); Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida (G.M.).

Background: Brain tumor-initiating cells (BTICs) are stem-like cells hypothesized to form a disease reservoir that mediates tumor recurrence in high-grade gliomas. Oncolytic virotherapy uses replication-competent viruses to target and kill malignant cells and has been evaluated in clinic for glioma therapy with limited results. Myxoma virus (MyxV) is a safe and highly effective oncolytic virus (OV) in conventional glioma models but, as seen with other OVs, is only modestly effective for patient-derived BTICs. The objective of this study was to determine whether MyxV treatment against human BTICs could be improved by combining chemotherapeutics and virotherapy.

Methods: A 73-compound library of drug candidates in clinical use or preclinical development was screened to identify compounds that sensitize human BTICs to MyxV treatment in vitro, and synergy was evaluated mathematically in lead compounds using Chou-Talalay analyses. The effects of combination therapy on viral gene expression and viral replication were also assessed.

Results: Eleven compounds that enhance MyxV efficacy were identified, and 6 were shown to synergize with the virus using Chou-Talalay analyses. Four of the synergistic compounds were shown to significantly increase viral gene expression, indicating a potential mechanism for synergy. Three highly synergistic compounds (axitinib, a VEGFR inhibitor; rofecoxib, a cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor; and pemetrexed, a folate anti-metabolite) belong to classes of compounds that have not been previously shown to synergize with oncolytic viruses in vitro.

Conclusions: This study has identified multiple novel drug candidates that synergistically improve MyxV efficacy in a preclinical BTIC glioma model.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/neuonc/nou359DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4490869PMC
August 2015

Neurotrophin signaling via TrkB and TrkC receptors promotes the growth of brain tumor-initiating cells.

J Biol Chem 2015 Feb 23;290(6):3814-24. Epub 2014 Dec 23.

From the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, Southern Alberta Cancer Research Institute, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta T2N 4N2, Canada, the Departments of Neuro-Oncology, the Department of Oncological Sciences, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida 33612

Neurotrophins and their receptors are frequently expressed in malignant gliomas, yet their functions are largely unknown. Previously, we have shown that p75 neurotrophin receptor is required for glioma invasion and proliferation. However, the role of Trk receptors has not been examined. In this study, we investigated the importance of TrkB and TrkC in survival of brain tumor-initiating cells (BTICs). Here, we show that human malignant glioma tissues and also tumor-initiating cells isolated from fresh human malignant gliomas express the neurotrophin receptors TrkB and TrkC, not TrkA, and they also express neurotrophins NGF, BDNF, and neurotrophin 3 (NT3). Specific activation of TrkB and TrkC receptors by ligands BDNF and NT3 enhances tumor-initiating cell viability through activation of ERK and Akt pathways. Conversely, TrkB and TrkC knockdown or pharmacologic inhibition of Trk signaling decreases neurotrophin-dependent ERK activation and BTIC growth. Further, pharmacological inhibition of both ERK and Akt pathways blocked BDNF, and NT3 stimulated BTIC survival. Importantly, attenuation of BTIC growth by EGFR inhibitors could be overcome by activation of neurotrophin signaling, and neurotrophin signaling is sufficient for long term BTIC growth as spheres in the absence of EGF and FGF. Our results highlight a novel role for neurotrophin signaling in brain tumor and suggest that Trks could be a target for combinatorial treatment of malignant glioma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M114.599373DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4319045PMC
February 2015

p75 neurotrophin receptor cleavage by α- and γ-secretases is required for neurotrophin-mediated proliferation of brain tumor-initiating cells.

J Biol Chem 2014 Mar 11;289(12):8067-85. Epub 2014 Feb 11.

From the Department of Neuro-Oncology, Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute and.

Malignant gliomas are highly invasive, proliferative, and resistant to treatment. Previously, we have shown that p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR) is a novel mediator of invasion of human glioma cells. However, the role of p75NTR in glioma proliferation is unknown. Here we used brain tumor-initiating cells (BTICs) and show that BTICs express neurotrophin receptors (p75NTR, TrkA, TrkB, and TrkC) and their ligands (NGF, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, and neurotrophin 3) and secrete NGF. Down-regulation of p75NTR significantly decreased proliferation of BTICs. Conversely, exogenouous NGF stimulated BTIC proliferation through α- and γ-secretase-mediated p75NTR cleavage and release of its intracellular domain (ICD). In contrast, overexpression of the p75NTR ICD induced proliferation. Interestingly, inhibition of Trk signaling blocked NGF-stimulated BTIC proliferation and p75NTR cleavage, indicating a role of Trk in p75NTR signaling. Further, blocking p75NTR cleavage attenuated Akt activation in BTICs, suggesting role of Akt in p75NTR-mediated proliferation. We also found that p75NTR, α-secretases, and the four subunits of the γ-secretase enzyme were elevated in glioblastoma multiformes patients. Importantly, the ICD of p75NTR was commonly found in malignant glioma patient specimens, suggesting that the receptor is activated and cleaved in patient tumors. These results suggest that p75NTR proteolysis is required for BTIC proliferation and is a novel potential clinical target.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M113.513762DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3961639PMC
March 2014

RNA helicase A is a downstream mediator of KIF1Bβ tumor-suppressor function in neuroblastoma.

Cancer Discov 2014 Apr 27;4(4):434-51. Epub 2014 Jan 27.

1Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research Ltd.; 2Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Karolinska Institutet; 3Department of Women's and Children's Health, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm; 4Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research Ltd., Biomedical Center, Uppsala; 5Department of Clinical Genetics, Institute of Biomedicine, University of Gothenburg, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Göteborg, Sweden; and 6Moffitt Cancer Center, Neuro-Oncology Program, Tampa, Florida.

Unlabelled: Inherited KIF1B loss-of-function mutations in neuroblastomas and pheochromocytomas implicate the kinesin KIF1B as a 1p36.2 tumor suppressor. However, the mechanism of tumor suppression is unknown. We found that KIF1B isoform β (KIF1Bβ) interacts with RNA helicase A (DHX9), causing nuclear accumulation of DHX9, followed by subsequent induction of the proapoptotic XIAP-associated factor 1 (XAF1) and, consequently, apoptosis. Pheochromocytoma and neuroblastoma arise from neural crest progenitors that compete for growth factors such as nerve growth factor (NGF) during development. KIF1Bβ is required for developmental apoptosis induced by competition for NGF. We show that DHX9 is induced by and required for apoptosis stimulated by NGF deprivation. Moreover, neuroblastomas with chromosomal deletion of 1p36 exhibit loss of KIF1Bβ expression and impaired DHX9 nuclear localization, implicating the loss of DHX9 nuclear activity in neuroblastoma pathogenesis.

Significance: KIF1Bβ has neuroblastoma tumor-suppressor properties and promotes and requires nuclear-localized DHX9 for its apoptotic function by activating XAF1 expression. Loss of KIF1Bβ alters subcellular localization of DHX9 and diminishes NGF dependence of sympathetic neurons, leading to reduced culling of neural progenitors, and, therefore, might predispose to tumor formation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/2159-8290.CD-13-0362DOI Listing
April 2014

Novel treatments for melanoma brain metastases.

Cancer Control 2013 Oct;20(4):298-306

Department of Neuro-Oncology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL 33612, USA.

Background: The development of brain metastases is common in patients with melanoma and is associated with a poor prognosis. Treating patients with melanoma brain metastases (MBMs) is a major therapeutic challenge. Standard approaches with conventional chemotherapy are disappointing, while surgery and radiotherapy have improved outcomes.

Methods: In this article, we discuss the biology of MBMs, briefly outline current treatment approaches, and emphasize novel and emerging therapies for MBMs.

Results: The mechanisms that underlie the metastases of melanoma to the brain are unknown; therefore, it is necessary to identify pathways to target MBMs. Most patients with MBMs have short survival times. Recent use of immune-based and targeted therapies has changed the natural history of metastatic melanoma and may be effective for the treatment of patients with MBMs.

Conclusions: Developing a better understanding of the factors responsible for MBMs will lead to improved management of this disease. In addition, determining the optimal treatments for MBMs and how they can be optimized or combined with other therapies, along with appropriate patient selection, are challenges for the management of this disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/107327481302000407DOI Listing
October 2013

Mutation analysis of HIF prolyl hydroxylases (PHD/EGLN) in individuals with features of phaeochromocytoma and renal cell carcinoma susceptibility.

Endocr Relat Cancer 2011 Feb 21;18(1):73-83. Epub 2010 Dec 21.

Centre for Rare Diseases and Personalised Medicine, University of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK.

Germline mutations in the von Hippel-Lindau disease (VHL) and succinate dehydrogenase subunit B (SDHB) genes can cause inherited phaeochromocytoma and/or renal cell carcinoma (RCC). Dysregulation of the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) transcription factors has been linked to VHL and SDHB-related RCC; both HIF dysregulation and disordered function of a prolyl hydroxylase domain isoform 3 (PHD3/EGLN3)-related pathway of neuronal apoptosis have been linked to the development of phaeochromocytoma. The 2-oxoglutarate-dependent prolyl hydroxylase enzymes PHD1 (EGLN2), PHD2 (EGLN1) and PHD3 (EGLN3) have a key role in regulating the stability of HIF-α subunits (and hence expression of the HIF-α transcription factors). A germline PHD2 mutation has been reported in association with congenital erythrocytosis and recurrent extra-adrenal phaeochromocytoma. We undertook mutation analysis of PHD1, PHD2 and PHD3 in two cohorts of patients with features of inherited phaeochromocytoma (n=82) and inherited RCC (n=64) and no evidence of germline mutations in known susceptibility genes. No confirmed pathogenic mutations were detected suggesting that mutations in these genes are not a frequent cause of inherited phaeochromocytoma or RCC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1677/ERC-10-0113DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3006001PMC
February 2011

p75 neurotrophin receptor-mediated apoptosis in sympathetic neurons involves a biphasic activation of JNK and up-regulation of tumor necrosis factor-alpha-converting enzyme/ADAM17.

J Biol Chem 2010 Jun 26;285(26):20358-68. Epub 2010 Apr 26.

Department of Biochemistry and Center for Molecular Neuroscience, Vanderbilt University Medical School, Nashville, Tennessee 37232, USA.

During the development of the sympathetic nervous system, the p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR) has a dual function: promoting survival together with TrkA in response to NGF, but inducing cell death upon binding pro or mature brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Apoptotic signaling through p75NTR requires activation of the stress kinase, JNK. However, the receptor also undergoes regulated proteolysis, first by a metalloprotease, and then by gamma-secretase, in response to pro-apoptotic ligands and this is necessary for receptor mediated neuronal death (Kenchappa, R. S., Zampieri, N., Chao, M. V., Barker, P. A., Teng, H. K., Hempstead, B. L., and Carter, B. D. (2006) Neuron 50, 219-232). Hence, the relationship between JNK activation and receptor proteolysis remains to be defined. Here, we report that JNK3 activation is necessary for p75NTR cleavage; however, following release of the intracellular domain, there is a secondary activation of JNK3 that is cleavage dependent. Receptor proteolysis and apoptosis were prevented in sympathetic neurons from jnk3(-/-) mice, while activation of JNK by ectopic expression of MEKK1 induced p75NTR cleavage and cell death. Proteolysis of the receptor was not detected until 6 h after BDNF treatment, suggesting that JNK3 promotes cleavage through a transcriptional mechanism. In support of this hypothesis, BDNF up-regulated tumor necrosis factor-alpha-converting enzyme (TACE)/ADAM17 mRNA and protein in wild-type, but not jnk3(-/-) sympathetic neurons. Down-regulation of TACE by RNA interference blocked BDNF-induced p75NTR cleavage and apoptosis, indicating that this metalloprotease is responsible for the initial processing of the receptor. Together, these results demonstrate that p75NTR-mediated activation of JNK3 is required for up-regulation of TACE, which promotes receptor proteolysis, leading to prolonged activation of JNK3 and subsequent apoptosis in sympathetic neurons.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M109.082834DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2888447PMC
June 2010

Ligand-independent signaling by disulfide-crosslinked dimers of the p75 neurotrophin receptor.

J Cell Sci 2009 Sep 25;122(Pt 18):3351-7. Epub 2009 Aug 25.

Division of Molecular Neurobiology, Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institute, 17177 Stockholm, Sweden.

Dimerization is recognized as a crucial step in the activation of many plasma membrane receptors. However, a growing number of receptors pre-exist as dimers in the absence of ligand, indicating that, although necessary, dimerization is not always sufficient for signaling. The p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)) forms disulfide-linked dimers at the cell surface independently of ligand binding through Cys257 in its transmembrane domain. Here, we show that crosslinking of p75(NTR) dimers by cysteine-scanning mutagenesis results in constitutive, ligand-independent activity in several pathways that are normally engaged upon neurotrophin stimulation of native receptors. The activity profiles of different disulfide-crosslinked p75(NTR) mutants were similar but not identical, suggesting that different configurations of p75(NTR) dimers might be endowed with different functions. Interestingly, crosslinked p75(NTR) mutants did not mimic the effects of the myelin inhibitors Nogo or MAG, suggesting the existence of ligand-specific activation mechanisms. Together, these results support a conformational model of p75(NTR) activation by neurotrophins, and reveal a genetic approach to generate gain-of-function receptor variants with distinct functional profiles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1242/jcs.055061DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2736866PMC
September 2009

Activation of the p75 neurotrophin receptor through conformational rearrangement of disulphide-linked receptor dimers.

Neuron 2009 Apr;62(1):72-83

Division of Molecular Neurobiology, Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institute, 17177 Stockholm, Sweden.

Ligand-mediated dimerization has emerged as a universal mechanism of growth factor receptor activation. Neurotrophins interact with dimers of the p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)), but the mechanism of receptor activation has remained elusive. Here, we show that p75(NTR) forms disulphide-linked dimers independently of neurotrophin binding through the highly conserved Cys(257) in its transmembrane domain. Mutation of Cys(257) abolished neurotrophin-dependent receptor activity but did not affect downstream signaling by the p75(NTR)/NgR/Lingo-1 complex in response to MAG, indicating the existence of distinct, ligand-specific activation mechanisms for p75(NTR). FRET experiments revealed a close association of p75(NTR) intracellular domains that was transiently disrupted by conformational changes induced upon NGF binding. Although mutation of Cys(257) did not alter the oligomeric state of p75(NTR), the mutant receptor was no longer able to propagate conformational changes to the cytoplasmic domain upon ligand binding. We propose that neurotrophins activate p75(NTR) by a mechanism involving rearrangement of disulphide-linked receptor subunits.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuron.2009.02.020DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2810632PMC
April 2009

Induction of proneurotrophins and activation of p75NTR-mediated apoptosis via neurotrophin receptor-interacting factor in hippocampal neurons after seizures.

J Neurosci 2008 Sep;28(39):9870-9

Department of Biological Sciences, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey 07102, USA.

Seizure-induced damage elicits a loss of hippocampal neurons mediated to a great extent by the p75 neurotrophin receptor (NTR). Proneurotrophins, which are potent apoptosis-inducing ligands for p75(NTR), were increased in the hippocampus, particularly in astrocytes, by pilocarpine-induced seizures; and infusion of anti-pro-NGF dramatically attenuated neuronal loss after seizures. The p75(NTR) is expressed in many different cell types in the nervous system, and can mediate a variety of different cellular functions by recruiting specific intracellular binding proteins to activate distinct signaling pathways. In this study, we demonstrate that neurotrophin receptor-interacting factor (NRIF) mediates apoptotic signaling via p75(NTR) in hippocampal neurons in vitro and in vivo. After seizure-induced injury, NRIF(-/-) mice showed an increase in p75(NTR) expression in the hippocampus; however, these neurons failed to undergo apoptosis in contrast to wild-type mice. Treatment of cultured hippocampal neurons with proneurotrophins induced association of NRIF with p75(NTR) and subsequent translocation of NRIF to the nucleus, which was dependent on cleavage of the receptor. Neurons lacking NRIF were resistant to p75(NTR)-mediated apoptosis in vitro and in vivo. In addition, we demonstrate some mechanistic differences in p75(NTR) signaling in hippocampal neurons compared with other cell types. Overall, these studies demonstrate the requirement for NRIF to signal p75(NTR)-mediated apoptosis of hippocampal neurons and that blocking pro-NGF can inhibit neuronal loss after seizures.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2841-08.2008DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2578816PMC
September 2008

NRIF is a regulator of neuronal cholesterol biosynthesis genes.

J Mol Neurosci 2009 Jun 2;38(2):152-8. Epub 2008 Aug 2.

Department of Biochemistry, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 8124A MRB III, Nashville, TN 37232, USA.

Cholesterol is a critical component of neuronal membranes, required for normal signal transduction. We showed previously that adult hippocampal neurons co-express high levels of cholesterogenic enzymes, and that their expression is under the control of the p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR). Most of the cellular effects of p75NTR are mediated via interacting proteins, including neurotrophin receptor interacting factor (NRIF). In this study, we tested the hypothesis that p75NTR-dependent regulation of cholesterol and lipid biosynthesis genes is mediated by NRIF. We found that in vitro down regulation of NRIF expression decreased the mRNA for two main cholesterogenic enzymes, 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase (Hmgcr; EC 2.3.3.10) and 7-dehydrocholesterol reductase (Dhcr7; EC 1.3.1.21). Further analyses revealed that NRIF-dependent and Dhcr7-dependent transcriptional changes show a high degree of overlap, and that NRIF reduction resulted in reduced expression of sterol-sensing domain protein SCAP, followed by a decrease in mRNA levels of SRE-motif containing genes (HMGCR, FASN, SREBP2, S1P, and SQS1). Finally, a reduction in cholesterol biosynthesis-related gene expression was also observed in hippocampal tissue of mice with NRIF deletion. Our combined in vitro and in vivo studies suggest that hippocampal neuronal cholesterol biosynthesis is regulated through the p75NTR interacting factor NRIF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12031-008-9136-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3118441PMC
June 2009

The kinesin KIF1Bbeta acts downstream from EglN3 to induce apoptosis and is a potential 1p36 tumor suppressor.

Genes Dev 2008 Apr 11;22(7):884-93. Epub 2008 Mar 11.

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.

VHL, NF-1, c-Ret, and Succinate Dehydrogenase Subunits B and D act on a developmental apoptotic pathway that is activated when nerve growth factor (NGF) becomes limiting for neuronal progenitor cells and requires the EglN3 prolyl hydroxylase as a downstream effector. Germline mutations of these genes cause familial pheochromocytoma and other neural crest-derived tumors. Using an unbiased shRNA screen we found that the kinesin KIF1Bbeta acts downstream from EglN3 and is both necessary and sufficient for neuronal apoptosis when NGF becomes limiting. KIF1Bbeta maps to chromosome 1p36.2, which is frequently deleted in neural crest-derived tumors including neuroblastomas. We identified inherited loss-of-function KIF1Bbeta missense mutations in neuroblastomas and pheochromocytomas and an acquired loss-of-function mutation in a medulloblastoma, arguing that KIF1Bbeta is a pathogenic target of these deletions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/gad.1648608DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2279200PMC
April 2008

Downregulation of glutaredoxin but not glutathione loss leads to mitochondrial dysfunction in female mice CNS: implications in excitotoxicity.

Neurochem Int 2007 Jul 5;51(1):37-46. Epub 2007 Apr 5.

Division of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, National Brain Research Centre, Nainwal Mode, Manesar 122050, India.

Oxidative stress, excitotoxicity and mitochondrial dysfunction play synergistic roles in neurodegeneration. Maintenance of thiol homeostasis is important for normal mitochondrial function and dysregulation of protein thiol homeostasis by oxidative stress leads to mitochondrial dysfunction and neurodegeneration. We examined the critical roles played by the antioxidant, non-protein thiol, glutathione and related enzyme, glutaredoxin in maintaining mitochondrial function during excitotoxicity caused by beta-N-oxalyl amino-L-alanine (L-BOAA), the causative factor of neurolathyrism, a motor neuron disease involving the pyramidal system. L-BOAA causes loss of GSH and inhibition of mitochondrial complex I in lumbosacral cord of male mice through oxidation of thiol groups, while female mice are resistant. Reducing GSH levels in female mice CNS by pretreatment with diethyl maleate or L-propargyl glycine did not result in inhibition of complex I activity, unlike male mice. Further, treatment of female mice depleted of GSH with L-BOAA did not induce inhibition of complex I indicating that GSH levels were not critical for maintaining complex I activity in female mice unlike their male counterpart. Glutaredoxin, a thiol disulfide oxidoreductase helps maintain redox status of proteins and downregulation of glutaredoxin results in loss of mitochondrial complex I activity. Female mice express higher levels of glutaredoxin in certain CNS regions and downregulation of glutaredoxin using antisense oligonucleotides sensitizes them to L-BOAA toxicity seen as mitochondrial complex I loss. Ovariectomy downregulates glutaredoxin and renders female mice vulnerable to L-BOAA toxicity as evidenced by activation of AP1, loss of GSH and complex I activity indicating the important role of glutaredoxin in neuroprotection. Estrogen protects against mitochondrial dysfunction caused by excitotoxicity by maintaining cellular redox status through higher constitutive expression of glutaredoxin in the CNS. Therapeutic interventions designed to upregulate glutaredoxin may offer neuroprotection against excitotoxicity in motor neurons.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuint.2007.03.008DOI Listing
July 2007

Down-regulation of glutaredoxin by estrogen receptor antagonist renders female mice susceptible to excitatory amino acid mediated complex I inhibition in CNS.

Brain Res 2006 Dec 14;1125(1):176-84. Epub 2006 Nov 14.

Division of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, National Brain Research Centre, Nainwal Mode, Manesar, 122050, India.

beta-N-oxalyl-amino-L-alanine, (L-BOAA), an excitatory amino acid, acts as an agonist of the AMPA subtype of glutamate receptors. It inhibits mitochondrial complex I in motor cortex and lumbosacral cord of male mice through oxidation of critical thiol groups, and glutaredoxin, a thiol disulfide oxido-reductase, helps maintain integrity of complex I. Since incidence of neurolathyrism is less common in women, we examined the mechanisms underlying the gender-related effects. Inhibition of complex I activity by L-BOAA was seen in male but not female mice. Pretreatment of female mice with estrogen receptor antagonist ICI 182,780 or tamoxifen sensitizes them to L-BOAA toxicity, indicating that the neuroprotection is mediated by estrogen receptors. L-BOAA triggers glutathione (GSH) loss in male mice but not in female mice, and only a small but significant increase in oxidized glutathione (GSSG) was seen in females. As a consequence, up-regulation of gamma-glutamyl cysteinyl synthase (the rate-limiting enzyme in glutathione synthesis) was seen only in male mouse CNS but not in females. Both glutathione reductase and glutaredoxin that reduce oxidized glutathione and protein glutathione mixed disulfides, respectively, were constitutively expressed at higher levels in females. Furthermore, glutaredoxin activity in female mice was down-regulated by estrogen antagonist indicating its regulation by estrogen receptor. The higher constitutive expression of glutathione reductase and glutaredoxin could potentially confer neuroprotection to female mice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2006.10.015DOI Listing
December 2006

Ligand-dependent cleavage of the P75 neurotrophin receptor is necessary for NRIF nuclear translocation and apoptosis in sympathetic neurons.

Neuron 2006 Apr;50(2):219-32

Department of Biochemistry and Center for Molecular Neuroscience, Vanderbilt University Medical School, Nashville, Tennessee 37232, USA.

The p75 neurotrophin receptor regulates neuronal survival, promoting it in some contexts yet activating apoptosis in others. The mechanism by which the receptor elicits these differential effects is poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that p75 is cleaved by gamma-secretase in sympathetic neurons, specifically in response to proapoptotic ligands. This cleavage resulted in ubiquitination and subsequent nuclear translocation of NRIF, a DNA binding protein essential for p75-mediated apoptosis. Inhibition of gamma-secretase or expression of a mutant p75 resistant to this protease prevented receptor proteolysis, blocked NRIF nuclear entry, and prevented apoptosis. In contrast, overexpression of the p75 ICD resulted in NRIF nuclear accumulation and apoptosis. The receptor proteolysis and NRIF nuclear localization were also observed in vivo during naturally occurring cell death in the superior cervical ganglia. These results indicate that p75-mediated apoptosis requires gamma-secretase dependent release of its ICD, which facilitates nuclear translocation of NRIF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuron.2006.03.011DOI Listing
April 2006

TRAF6-mediated ubiquitination regulates nuclear translocation of NRIF, the p75 receptor interactor.

EMBO J 2005 Nov 27;24(22):3859-68. Epub 2005 Oct 27.

Department of Biological Sciences and Program in Cell and Molecular Biosciences, Auburn University, Auburn, AL, USA.

TRAF6 is an E3 ubiquitin ligase that mediates signaling from members of the tumor necrosis factor and Toll-like receptor superfamilies, including the p75 neurotrophin receptor. Recently, TRAF6 was shown to bind to another p75 cytoplasmic interactor, NRIF, and promote its nuclear localization. Here, we demonstrate that NRIF is a substrate for TRAF6-mediated K63 polyubiquitination and that this modification is necessary for its nuclear translocation. Activation of p75 resulted in NRIF polyubiquitination, association with TRAF6 and nuclear localization. NRIF was polyubiquitinated by TRAF6 in vitro and in cultured cells, and this was abrogated by mutation of K19 in the amino-terminus of NRIF. The K19R mutant NRIF displayed reduced TRAF6 association and neurotrophin-dependent nuclear localization. In neurons from traf6-/- mice, NRIF failed to enter the nucleus in response to p75 activation, and polyubiquitination and nuclear localization were attenuated in traf6-/- brain. Finally, unlike wild-type NRIF, the K19R NRIF failed to reconstitute p75-mediated apoptosis in nrif-/- neurons. These results reveal a unique mechanism of p75 signaling and a novel role for K63-linked ubiquitin chains.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/sj.emboj.7600845DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1283944PMC
November 2005

Estrogen and neuroprotection: higher constitutive expression of glutaredoxin in female mice offers protection against MPTP-mediated neurodegeneration.

FASEB J 2004 Jul 7;18(10):1102-4. Epub 2004 May 7.

Division of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, National Brain Research Centre, Nainwal Mode, Manesar, India.

Incidence of Parkinson's disease is lower in women as compared with men. Although neuroprotective effect of estrogen is recognized, the underlying molecular mechanisms are unclear. MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6, tetrahydro-pyridine), a neurotoxin that causes Parkinson's disease-like symptoms acts through inhibition of mitochondrial complex I. Administration of MPTP to male mice results in loss of dopaminergic neurons in substantia nigra, whereas female mice are unaffected. Oxidation of critical thiol groups by MPTP disrupts mitochondrial complex I, and up-regulation of glutaredoxin (a thiol disulfide oxidoreductase) is essential for recovery of complex I. Early events following MPTP exposure, such as increased AP1 transcription, loss of glutathione, and up-regulation of glutaredoxin mRNA is seen only in male mice, indicating that early response to neurotoxic insult does not occur in females. Pretreatment of female mice with ICI 182,780, estrogen receptor (ER) antagonist sensitizes them to MPTP-mediated complex I dysfunction. Constitutive expression of glutaredoxin is significantly higher in female mice as compared with males. ICI 182,780 down-regulates glutaredoxin activity in female mouse brain regions (midbrain and striatum), indicating that glutaredoxin expression is regulated through estrogen receptor signaling. Higher constitutive expression of glutaredoxin could potentially contribute to the neuroprotection seen in female mouse following exposure to neurotoxins, such as MPTP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1096/fj.03-1075fjeDOI Listing
July 2004

Gamma-glutamyl cysteine synthetase is up-regulated during recovery of brain mitochondrial complex I following neurotoxic insult in mice.

Neurosci Lett 2003 Oct;350(1):51-5

National Brain Research Centre, Nainwal Mode, Manesar, 122050 Haryana, India.

Beta-N-Oxalyl amino-L-alanine (L-BOAA), a naturally occurring excitatory amino acid inhibits mitochondrial complex I activity in motor cortex and lumbar spinal cord of mice through oxidation of critical thiol groups. Glutaredoxin, a protein disulfide oxido-reductase mediates recovery of complex I by regenerating protein thiols utilizing reducing equivalents of glutathione. We have examined the status of gamma-glutamyl cysteine synthetase (gamma-GCS), the rate limiting enzyme in glutathione synthesis during recovery of complex I function following L-BOAA toxicity. Sustained and maximal up-regulation of gamma-GCS was seen in motor cortex which was associated with regeneration of complex I activity. In lumbosacral cord, however, the up-regulation was transient and complex I function did not recover. These studies demonstrate the important role of gamma-GCS in mediating the recovery of mitochondrial function following excitotoxic insult and its differential regulation in central nervous system regions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0304-3940(03)00779-1DOI Listing
October 2003
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