Trex1 exonuclease degrades ssDNA to prevent chronic checkpoint activation and autoimmune disease.

Cancer Research UK London Research Institute, Clare Hall Laboratories, South Mimms, Hertfordshire EN6 3LD, UK.
Cell (Impact Factor: 33.12). 12/2007; 131(5):873-86. DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2007.10.017
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Trex1 is the major 3' DNA exonuclease in mammalian cells, and mutations in the human TREX1 gene can cause Aicardi-Goutières syndrome, characterized by perturbed immunity. Similarly, Trex1(-/-) mice have an autoinflammatory phenotype; however, the mechanism of Trex1-deficient disease is unknown. We report that Trex1, ordinarily associated with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), relocalizes to the S phase nucleus after gamma irradiation or hydroxyurea treatment. Notably, Trex1-deficient cells show defective G1/S transition and chronic ATM-dependent checkpoint activation, even in the absence of exogenous stress, correlating with persistent single-stranded DNA molecules produced in S phase, which accumulate in the ER. Our data indicate that Trex1 acts on a single-stranded DNA polynucleotide species generated from processing of aberrant replication intermediates to attenuate DNA damage checkpoint signaling and prevent pathological immune activation.

1 Bookmark
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dysfunction in Ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM), a central component of the DNA repair machinery, results in Ataxia Telangiectasia (AT), a cancer-prone disease with a variety of inflammatory manifestations. By analyzing AT patient samples and Atm(-/-) mice, we found that unrepaired DNA lesions induce type I interferons (IFNs), resulting in enhanced anti-viral and anti-bacterial responses in Atm(-/-) mice. Priming of the type I interferon system by DNA damage involved release of DNA into the cytoplasm where it activated the cytosolic DNA sensing STING-mediated pathway, which in turn enhanced responses to innate stimuli by activating the expression of Toll-like receptors, RIG-I-like receptors, cytoplasmic DNA sensors, and their downstream signaling partners. This study provides a potential explanation for the inflammatory phenotype of AT patients and establishes damaged DNA as a cell intrinsic danger signal that primes the innate immune system for a rapid and amplified response to microbial and environmental threats. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Immunity 02/2015; 42(2):332-43. DOI:10.1016/j.immuni.2015.01.012 · 19.75 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Vpr is one of the most enigmatic viral auxiliary proteins of HIV. During the past twenty years, several activities have been ascribed to this viral protein, but one, its ability to mediate cell cycle arrest at the G2 to M transition has been the most extensively studied. Nonetheless, the genuine role of Vpr and its pathophysiological relevance in the viral life cycle have remained mysterious. Recent work by Laguette et al. (Cell 156:134-145, 2014) provides important insight into the molecular mechanism of Vpr-mediated G2 arrest. This study highlights for the first time how Vpr recruits the SLX4 endonuclease complex and how Vpr-induced inappropriate activation of this complex leads to G2 arrest. Here, we will discuss these findings in the light of previous work to show how they change the view of Vpr¿s mechanism of action. We will also discuss how these findings open new questions towards the understanding of the biological function of Vpr regarding innate immune sensing.
    Retrovirology 12/2014; 11(1):117. DOI:10.1186/PREACCEPT-2057766064124418 · 4.77 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Aicardi-Goutières syndrome (AGS) is a monogenic inflammatory encephalopathy caused by mutations in TREX1, RNASEH2A, RNASEH2B, RNASEH2C, SAMHD1, ADAR1, or MDA5. Mutations in those genes affect normal RNA/DNA intracellular metabolism and detection, triggering an autoimmune response with an increase in cerebral IFN-α production by astrocytes. Microangiopathy and vascular disease also contribute to the neuropathology in AGS. In this study, we report that AGS gene silencing of TREX1, SAMHD1, RNASEH2A, and ADAR1 by short hairpin RNAs in human neural stem cell-derived astrocytes, human primary astrocytes, and brain-derived endothelial cells leads to an antiviral status of these cells compared with nontarget short hairpin RNA-treated cells. We observed a distinct activation of the IFN-stimulated gene signature with a substantial increase in the release of proinflammatory cytokines (IL-6) and chemokines (CXCL10 and CCL5). A differential impact of AGS gene silencing was noted; silencing TREX1 gave rise to the most dramatic in both cell types. Our findings fit well with the observation that patients carrying mutations in TREX1 experience an earlier onset and fatal outcome. We provide in the present study, to our knowledge for the first time, insight into how astrocytic and endothelial activation of antiviral status may differentially lead to cerebral pathology, suggesting a rational link between proinflammatory mediators and disease severity in AGS. Copyright © 2015 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
May 22, 2014