Inhibin-A antagonizes TGFbeta2 signaling by down-regulating cell surface expression of the TGFbeta coreceptor betaglycan.
ABSTRACT Inhibin is an atypical member of the TGFbeta family of signaling ligands and is classically understood to function via competitive antagonism of activin ligand binding. Inhibin-null (Inha-/-) mice develop both gonadal and adrenocortical tumors, the latter of which depend upon gonadectomy for initiation. We have previously shown that gonadectomy initiates adrenal tumorigenesis in Inha-/- mice by elevating production of LH, which drives aberrant proliferation and differentiation of subcapsular adrenocortical progenitor cells. In this study, we demonstrate that LH signaling specifically up-regulates expression of TGFbeta2 in the subcapsular region of the adrenal cortex, which coincides with regions of aberrant Smad3 activation in Inha-/- adrenal glands. Consistent with a functional interaction between inhibin and TGFbeta2, we further demonstrate that recombinant inhibin-A antagonizes signaling by TGFbeta2 in cultured adrenocortical cells. The mechanism of this antagonism depends upon the mutual affinity of inhibin-A and TGFbeta2 for the signaling coreceptor betaglycan. Although inhibin-A cannot physically displace TGFbeta2 from its binding sites on betaglycan, binding of inhibin-A to the cell surface causes endocytic internalization of betaglycan, thereby reducing the number of available binding sites for TGFbeta2 on the cell surface. The mechanism by which inhibin-A induces betaglycan internalization is clathrin independent, making it distinct from the mechanism by which TGFbeta ligands themselves induce betaglycan internalization. These data indicate that inhibin can specifically antagonize TGFbeta2 signaling in cellular contexts where surface expression of betaglycan is limiting and provide a novel mechanism for activin-independent phenotypes in Inha-/- mice.
SourceAvailable from: Rama Mishra[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: When it was initially discovered in 1923, inhibin was characterized as a hypophysiotropic hormone that acts on pituitary cells to regulate pituitary hormone secretion. Ninety years later, what we know about inhibin stretches far beyond its well-established capacity to inhibit activin signaling and suppress pituitary FSH production. Inhibin is one of the major reproductive hormones involved in the regulation of folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis. Although the physiologic role of inhibin as an activin antagonist in other organ systems is not as well defined as it is in the pituitary-gonadal axis, inhibin also modulates biological processes in other organs through paracrine, autocrine, and/or endocrine mechanisms. Inhibin and components of its signaling pathway are expressed in many organs. Diagnostically, inhibin is used for prenatal screening of Down syndrome as part of the quadruple test, and as a biochemical marker in the assessment of ovarian reserve. In this review, we provide a comprehensive summary of our current understanding of the biological role of inhibin, its relationship with activin, its signaling mechanisms, and its potential value as a diagnostic marker for reproductive function and pregnancy-associated conditions.Endocrine Reviews 07/2014; 35(5):er20141003. DOI:10.1210/er.2014-1003 · 19.36 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare, but highly malignant tumor of unknown origin. Inhibin α-subunit (Inha) knockout mice develop ACCs following gonadectomy. In man, INHA expression varies widely within ACC tissues and its circulating peptide inhibin pro-αC has been described as a novel tumor marker for ACC. We investigated whether genetic and epigenetic changes of the INHA gene in human ACC cause loss or variation of INHA expression. To this end, analyses of INHA sequence, promoter methylation and mRNA expression were performed in human adrenocortical tissues. Serum inhibin pro-αC levels were also measured in ACC patients. INHA genetic analysis in 37 unique ACCs revealed 10 novel, heterozygous rare variants. Of the 3 coding bases affected, one variant was synonymous and two were missense variants: S72F and S184F. The minor allele of rs11893842 at -124 bp was observed at a low frequency (24%) in ACC samples and was associated with decreased INHA mRNA levels: 4.7±1.9 arbitrary units for AA, compared to 26±11 for AG/GG genotypes (P = 0.034). The methylation of four proximal INHA promoter CpGs was aberrantly increased in five ACCs (47.7±3.9%), compared to normal adrenals (18.4±0.6%, P = 0.0052), whereas the other 14 ACCs studied showed diminished promoter methylation (9.8±1.1%, P = 0.020). CpG methylation was inversely correlated to INHA mRNA levels in ACCs (r = -0.701, p = 0.0036), but not associated with serum inhibin pro-αC levels. In conclusion, aberrant methylation and common genetic variation in the INHA promoter occur in human ACCs and are associated with decreased INHA expression.PLoS ONE 08/2014; 9(8):e104944. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0104944 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The adrenal cortex is divided into concentric zones. In humans the major cortical zones are the zona glomerulosa, zona fasciculata, and zona reticularis. The adrenal cortex is a dynamic organ in which senescent cells are replaced by newly differentiated ones. This constant renewal facilitates organ remodeling in response to physiological demand for steroids. Cortical zones can reversibly expand, contract, or alter their biochemical profiles to accommodate needs. Pools of stem/progenitor cells in the adrenal capsule, subcapsular region, and juxtamedullary region can differentiate to repopulate or expand zones. Some of these pools appear to be activated only during specific developmental windows or in response to extreme physiological demand. Senescent cells can also be replenished through direct lineage conversion; for example, cells in the zona glomerulosa can transform into cells of the zona fasciculata. Adrenocortical cell differentiation, renewal, and function are regulated by a variety of endocrine/paracrine factors including adrenocorticotropin, angiotensin II, insulin-related growth hormones, luteinizing hormone, activin, and inhibin. Additionally, zonation and regeneration of the adrenal cortex are controlled by developmental signaling pathways, such as the sonic hedgehog, delta-like homolog 1, fibroblast growth factor, and WNT/β-catenin pathways. The mechanisms involved in adrenocortical remodeling are complex and redundant so as to fulfill the offsetting goals of organ homeostasis and stress adaptation.Frontiers in Endocrinology 01/2015; 6. DOI:10.3389/fendo.2015.00027