Two major Smad pathways in TGF-beta superfamily signalling.
ABSTRACT Members of the transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) superfamily bind to two different serine/threonine kinase receptors, i.e. type I and type II receptors. Upon ligand binding, type I receptors specifically activate intracellular Smad proteins. R-Smads are direct substrates of type I receptors; Smads 2 and 3 are specifically activated by activin/nodal and TGF-beta type I receptors, whereas Smads 1, 5 and 8 are activated by BMP type I receptors. Nearly 30 proteins have been identified as members of the TGF-beta superfamily in mammals, and can be classified based on whether they activate activin/TGF-beta-specific R-Smads (AR-Smads) or BMP-specific R-Smads (BR-Smads). R-Smads form complexes with Co-Smads and translocate into the nucleus, where they regulate the transcription of target genes. AR-Smads bind to various proteins, including transcription factors and transcriptional co-activators or co-repressors, whereas BR-Smads interact with other proteins less efficiently than AR-Smads. Id proteins are induced by BR-Smads, and play important roles in exhibiting some biological effects of BMPs. Understanding the mechanisms of TGF-beta superfamily signalling is thus important for the development of new ways to treat various clinical diseases in which TGF-beta superfamily signalling is involved.
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ABSTRACT: HDAC inhibitors (HDACI) are now emerging as one of the most promising new classes of drugs for the treatment of select forms of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). They are particularly active in T-cell lymphomas, possibly hodgkin's lymphoma and indolent B cell lymphomas. Presently, two of these agents, vorinostat and romidepsin, have been approved in the US for the treatment of relapsed and refractory cutaneous T cell lymphomas (CTCL). Initially, these agents were developed with the idea that they affected transcriptional activation and thus gene expression, by modulating chromatin condensation and decondensation. It is now clear that their effects go beyond chromatin and by affecting the acetylation status of histones and other intra-cellular proteins, they modify gene expression and cellular function via multiple pathways. Gene expression profiles and functional genetic analysis has led to further understanding of the various molecular pathways that are affected by these agents including cell cycle regulation, pathways of cellular proliferation, apoptosis and angiogenesis all important in lymphomagenesis. There is also increasing data to support the effects of these agents on T cell receptor and immune function which may explain the high level of activity of these agents in T cell lymphomas and hodgkin's lymphoma. There is ample evidence of epigenetic dysregulation in lymphomas which may underlie the mechanisms of action of these agents but how these agents work is still not clear. Current HDAC inhibitors can be divided into at least four classes based on their chemical structure. At present several of these HDAC inhibitors are in clinical trials both as single agents and in combination with chemotherapy or other biological agents. They are easy to administer and are generally well tolerated with minimal side effects. Different dosing levels and schedules and the use of isospecific HDAC inhibitors are some of the strategies that are being employed to increase the therapeutic effect of these agents in the treatment of lymphomas. There may also be class differences that translate into specific activity against different lymphoma. HDAC inhibitors will likely be incorporated into combinations of targeted therapies both in the upfront and relapsed setting for lymphomas.Investigational New Drugs 12/2010; 28 Suppl 1:S58-78. · 3.36 Impact Factor
Article: Conservation and diversification of an ancestral chordate gene regulatory network for dorsoventral patterning.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Formation of a dorsoventral axis is a key event in the early development of most animal embryos. It is well established that bone morphogenetic proteins (Bmps) and Wnts are key mediators of dorsoventral patterning in vertebrates. In the cephalochordate amphioxus, genes encoding Bmps and transcription factors downstream of Bmp signaling such as Vent are expressed in patterns reminiscent of those of their vertebrate orthologues. However, the key question is whether the conservation of expression patterns of network constituents implies conservation of functional network interactions, and if so, how an increased functional complexity can evolve. Using heterologous systems, namely by reporter gene assays in mammalian cell lines and by transgenesis in medaka fish, we have compared the gene regulatory network implicated in dorsoventral patterning of the basal chordate amphioxus and vertebrates. We found that Bmp but not canonical Wnt signaling regulates promoters of genes encoding homeodomain proteins AmphiVent1 and AmphiVent2. Furthermore, AmphiVent1 and AmphiVent2 promoters appear to be correctly regulated in the context of a vertebrate embryo. Finally, we show that AmphiVent1 is able to directly repress promoters of AmphiGoosecoid and AmphiChordin genes. Repression of genes encoding dorsal-specific signaling molecule Chordin and transcription factor Goosecoid by Xenopus and zebrafish Vent genes represents a key regulatory interaction during vertebrate axis formation. Our data indicate high evolutionary conservation of a core Bmp-triggered gene regulatory network for dorsoventral patterning in chordates and suggest that co-option of the canonical Wnt signaling pathway for dorsoventral patterning in vertebrates represents one of the innovations through which an increased morphological complexity of vertebrate embryo is achieved.PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(2):e14650. · 4.09 Impact Factor
Article: ChIP-seq defined genome-wide map of TGFβ/SMAD4 targets: implications with clinical outcome of ovarian cancer.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Deregulation of the transforming growth factor-β (TGFβ) signaling pathway in epithelial ovarian cancer has been reported, but the precise mechanism underlying disrupted TGFβ signaling in the disease remains unclear. We performed chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by sequencing (ChIP-seq) to investigate genome-wide screening of TGFβ-induced SMAD4 binding in epithelial ovarian cancer. Following TGFβ stimulation of the A2780 epithelial ovarian cancer cell line, we identified 2,362 SMAD4 binding loci and 318 differentially expressed SMAD4 target genes. Comprehensive examination of SMAD4-bound loci, revealed four distinct binding patterns: 1) Basal; 2) Shift; 3) Stimulated Only; 4) Unstimulated Only. TGFβ stimulated SMAD4-bound loci were primarily classified as either Stimulated only (74%) or Shift (25%), indicating that TGFβ-stimulation alters SMAD4 binding patterns in epithelial ovarian cancer cells. Furthermore, based on gene regulatory network analysis, we determined that the TGFβ-induced, SMAD4-dependent regulatory network was strikingly different in ovarian cancer compared to normal cells. Importantly, the TGFβ/SMAD4 target genes identified in the A2780 epithelial ovarian cancer cell line were predictive of patient survival, based on in silico mining of publically available patient data bases. In conclusion, our data highlight the utility of next generation sequencing technology to identify genome-wide SMAD4 target genes in epithelial ovarian cancer and link aberrant TGFβ/SMAD signaling to ovarian tumorigenesis. Furthermore, the identified SMAD4 binding loci, combined with gene expression profiling and in silico data mining of patient cohorts, may provide a powerful approach to determine potential gene signatures with biological and future translational research in ovarian and other cancers.PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(7):e22606. · 4.09 Impact Factor