Abstract : Chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) is a multifactorial, heterogeneous disease characterized by persistent inflammation of the sinonasal mucosa and tissue remodeling, which can include basal/progenitor cell hyperplasia, goblet cell hyperplasia, squamous cell metaplasia, loss or dysfunction of ciliated cells, and increased matrix deposition. Repeated injuries can stimulate airway epithelial cells to produce inflammatory mediators that activate epithelial cells, immune cells, or the epithelial?mesenchymal trophic unit. This persistent inflammation can consequently induce aberrant tissue remodeling. However, the molecular mechanisms driving disease within the different molecular CRS subtypes remain inadequately characterized. Numerous secreted and cell surface proteins relevant to airway inflammation and remodeling are initially synthesized as inactive precursor proteins, including growth/differentiation factors and their associated receptors, enzymes, adhesion molecules, neuropeptides, and peptide hormones. Therefore, these precursor proteins require post-translational cleavage by proprotein convertases (PCs) to become fully functional. In this review, we summarize the roles of PCs in CRS-associated tissue remodeling and discuss the therapeutic potential of targeting PCs for CRS treatment.
Abstract : Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) may be important regulators in the progression of ankylosing spondylitis (AS). The competing endogenous RNA (ceRNA) activity of lncRNAs plays crucial roles in osteogenesis. We identified the mechanism of the differentially expressed lncRNA MALAT1 in AS using bioinformatic analysis and its ceRNA mechanism. The interaction of MALAT1, microRNA-558, and GSDMD was identified using integrated bioinformatics analysis and validated. Loss- and gain-of-function assays evaluated their effects on the viability, apoptosis, pyroptosis and inflammation of chondrocytes in AS. We found elevated MALAT1 and GSDMD but reduced miR-558 in AS cartilage tissues and chondrocytes. MALAT1 contributed to the suppression of cell viability and facilitated apoptosis and pyroptosis in AS chondrocytes. GSDMD was a potential target gene of miR-558. Depletion of MALAT1 expression elevated miR-558 by inhibiting GSDMD to enhance cell viability and inhibit inflammation, apoptosis and pyroptosis of chondrocytes in AS. In summary, our key findings demonstrated that knockdown of MALAT1 served as a potential suppressor of AS by upregulating miR-558 via the downregulation of GSDMD expression.
Abstract : Extracellular vesicles (EVs) play an essential role in the communication between cells and the tumor microenvironment. However, the effect of tumor-derived EVs on the growth and metastasis of lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) remains to be explored. This study aimed to elucidate the role of miR-153-3p-EVs in the invasion and migration capabilities of LUAD cells and explore its mechanism through in vivo and in vitro experiments. We found that miR-153-3p was specifically and highly expressed in LUAD and its secreted EVs. Furthermore, the expression of BANCR was negatively regulated by miR-153-3p and identified as a target gene of miR-153-3p using luciferase reporter assays. Through further investigation, we found that the downregulation of BANCR activates the PI3K/AKT pathway and accelerates the process of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), which ultimately leads to the aggravation of LUAD. The orthotopic xenograft mouse model was established to illustrate the effect of miR-153-3p-EVs on LUAD. Animal studies showed that miR-153-3p-EVs accelerated tumor growth in mice. Besides, we found that miR-153-3p-EVs could damage the respiratory ability of mice and produce a mass of inflammatory cells around the lung tissue of mice. Nevertheless, antagomir-153-3p treatment could inhibit the deterioration of respiratory function and inhibit the growth of lung tumors in mice. In conclusion, our study reveals the potential molecular mechanism of miR-153-3p-EVs in the development of LUAD and provides a potential strategy for the treatment of LUAD.
Abstract : Malignant meningiomas often show invasive growth that makes complete tumor resection challenging, and they are more prone to recur after radical resection. Invasive meningioma associated transcript 1 (IMAT1) is a long noncoding RNA located on Homo sapiens chromosome 17 that was identified by our team based on absolute expression differences in invasive and non-invasive meningiomas. Our studies indicated that IMAT1 was highly expressed in invasive meningiomas compared with non-invasive meningiomas. In vitro studies showed that IMAT1 promoted meningioma cell invasion through the inactivation of the Kr?ppel-like factor 4 (KLF4)/hsa-miR22-3p/Snai1 pathway by acting as a sponge for hsa-miR22-3p, and IMAT1 knockdown effectively restored the tumor suppressive properties of KLF4 by preserving its tumor suppressor pathway. In vivo experiments confirmed that IMAT1 silencing could significantly inhibit the growth of subcutaneous tumors and prolong the survival period of tumor-bearing mice. Our findings demonstrated that the high expression of IMAT1 is the inherent reason for the loss of the tumor suppressive properties of KLF4 during meningioma progression. Therefore, we believe that IMAT1 may be a potential biological marker and treatment target for meningiomas.
Abstract : Hypoxia leads to significant cellular stress that has diverse pathological consequences such as cardiovascular diseases and cancers. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are one of regulators of the adaptive pathway in hypoxia. We identified a hypoxia-induced miRNA, miR-34c, that was significantly upregulated in hypoxic human umbilical cord vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and in murine blood vessels on day 3 of hindlimb ischemia (HLI). miR-34c directly inhibited BCL2 expression, acting as a toggle switch between apoptosis and autophagy in vitro and in vivo. BCL2 repression by miR-34c activated autophagy, which was evaluated by the expression of LC3-II. Overexpression of miR-34c inhibited apoptosis in HUVEC as well as in a murine model of HLI, and increased cell viability in HUVEC. Importantly, the number of viable cells in the blood vessels following HLI was increased by miR-34c overexpression. Collectively, our findings show that miR-34c plays a protective role in hypoxia, suggesting a novel therapeutic target for hypoxic and ischemic diseases in the blood vessels.
Abstract : Suppressor of mothers against decapentaplegic homolog (SMAD) 4 is a pluripotent signaling mediator that regulates myriad cellular functions, including cell growth, cell division, angiogenesis, apoptosis, cell invasion, and metastasis, through transforming growth factor β (TGF-β)-dependent and -independent pathways. SMAD4 is a critical modulator in signal transduction and functions primarily as a transcription factor or cofactor. Apart from being a DNA-binding factor, the additional SMAD4 mechanisms in tumor suppression remain elusive. We previously identified methyl malonyl aciduria cobalamin deficiency B type (MMAB) as a critical SMAD4 binding protein using a proto array analysis. This study confirmed the interaction between SMAD4 and MMAB using bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) assay, proximity ligation assay (PLA), and conventional immunoprecipitation. We found that transient SMAD4 overexpression down-regulates MMAB expression via a proteasome-dependent pathway. SMAD4-MMAB interaction was independent of TGF-β signaling. Finally, we determined the effect of MMAB downregulation on cancer cells. siRNA-mediated knockdown of MMAB affected cancer cell metabolism in HeLa cells by decreasing ATP production and glucose consumption as well as inducing apoptosis. These findings suggest that SMAD4 controls cancer cell metabolism by regulating MMAB.
Abstract : The post-translational modification (e.g., phosphorylation) of estrogen receptor α (ERα) plays a role in controlling the expression and subcellular localization of ERα as well as its sensitivity to hormone response. Here, we show that ERα is also modified by UFM1 and this modification (ufmylation) plays a crucial role in promoting the stability and transactivity of ERα, which in turn promotes breast cancer development. The elevation of ufmylation via the knockdown of UFSP2 (the UFM1-deconjugating enzyme in humans) dramatically increases ERα stability by inhibiting ubiquitination. In contrast, ERα stability is decreased by the prevention of ufmylation via the silencing of UBA5 (the UFM1-activating E1 enzyme). Lys171 and Lys180 of ERα were identified as the major UFM1 acceptor sites, and the replacement of both Lys residues by Arg (2KR mutation) markedly reduced ERα stability. Moreover, the 2KR mutation abrogated the 17β-estradiol-induced transactivity of ERα and the expression of its downstream target genes, including pS2, cyclin D1, and c-Myc; this indicates that ERα ufmylation is required for its transactivation function. In addition, the 2KR mutation prevented anchorage-independent colony formation by MCF7 cells. Most notably, the expression of UFM1 and its conjugating machinery (i.e., UBA5, UFC1, UFL1, and UFBP1) were dramatically upregulated in ERα-positive breast cancer cell lines and tissues. Collectively, these findings implicate a critical role attributed to ERα ufmylation in breast cancer development by ameliorating its stability and transactivity.