Direct regulation of myelin protein zero expression by the Egr2 transactivator
ABSTRACT During myelination of the peripheral nervous system, the myelin protein zero (Mpz) gene is induced to produce the most abundant protein component (P(0)) of mature myelin. Although the basal embryonic expression of Mpz in Schwann cells has been attributed to regulation by Sox10, the molecular mechanism for the profound up-regulation of this gene during myelination has not been established. In this study, we have identified a highly conserved element within the first intron of the Mpz gene, which contains binding sites for the early growth response 2 (Egr2/Krox20) transcription factor, a critical regulator of peripheral nerve myelination. Egr2 can transactivate the intron element, and the induction is blocked by two known repressors of Egr2 activity. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, we find that Egr2 binds in vivo to the intron element, but not to the Mpz promoter. Known inducers of Mpz expression such as forskolin and insulin-like growth factor-1 also activate the element in an Egr2-dependent manner. In addition, we found that Egr2 can act synergistically with Sox10 to activate this intron element, suggesting a model in which cooperative interactions between Egr2 and Sox10 mediate a large increase in Mpz expression to the high levels found in myelinating Schwann cells.
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ABSTRACT: We previously reported that addition of extracellular matrix (ECM) extracts to rat Schwann cell-dorsal root ganglion neuron (DRGN) co-cultures activated mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) p38, whereas inhibition blocked myelination. Here, we used p38 pharmacological inhibitors and gene silencing to assess their effects on downstream kinases and key transcription factors. We show that p38α regulates expression of the master transcription factor, Krox-20, required for the onset of myelination in Schwann cell-DRGNs, as assessed by immunocytochemistry and qRT-PCR. p38 activity is also required for the expression of the cell cycle inhibitor p27(kip1) , associated with Schwann cell differentiation. Three potential effectors of p38 were explored: MAPK-activated protein kinase-2 (MK2), mitogen and stress-activated protein kinase-1 (MSK-1), and the transcription factor cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB). Inhibition of MK2 with CMPD1 or gene knockdown with siRNAs reduced numbers of Krox-20-positive Schwann cells and expression of myelin proteins MBP and MAG. ECM activated CREB and increased Krox-20 expression, whereas CREB1 gene silencing reduced Krox-20. Furthermore, two nonselective inhibitors of MSK-1 (H89 and R0-318820) decreased ECM-induced CREB phosphorylation and, similar to anti-MSK-1 siRNAs, reduced Krox-20-positive cells. In addition, p38 modulated the expression of two transcription factors involved in the regulation of Krox-20 [suppressed cAMP-inducible protein (SCIP) and Sox10], but not Sox2, an antagonist of Krox-20. Collectively, our results show that p38 primarily directs Schwann cell differentiation and peripheral myelination by regulating Krox-20 expression through its downstream effectors, MK2 and MSK-1/CREB, and transcription factors SCIP and Sox10.Glia 07/2012; 60(7):1130-44. DOI:10.1002/glia.22340 · 5.47 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The transcription factor SOX10 has essential roles in neural crest-derived cell populations, including myelinating Schwann cells-specialized glial cells responsible for ensheathing axons in the peripheral nervous system. Importantly, SOX10 directly regulates the expression of genes essential for proper myelin function. To date, only a handful of SOX10 target loci have been characterized in Schwann cells. Addressing this lack of knowledge will provide a better understanding of Schwann cell biology and candidate loci for relevant diseases such as demyelinating peripheral neuropathies. We have identified a highly-conserved SOX10 binding site within an alternative promoter at the SH3-domain kinase binding protein 1 (Sh3kbp1) locus. The genomic segment identified at Sh3kbp1 binds to SOX10 and displays strong promoter activity in Schwann cells in vitro and in vivo. Mutation of the SOX10 binding site ablates promoter activity, and ectopic expression of SOX10 in SOX10-negative cells promotes the expression of endogenous Sh3kbp1. Combined, these data reveal Sh3kbp1 as a novel target of SOX10 and raise important questions regarding the function of SH3KBP1 isoforms in Schwann cells.Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience 02/2012; 49(2):85-96. DOI:10.1016/j.mcn.2011.10.004 · 3.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Genetically modified mice have been a major source of information about the molecular control of Schwann-cell myelin formation, and the role of β-neuregulin 1 (NRG1) in this process in vivo. In vitro, on the other hand, Schwann cells from rats have been used in most analyses of the signaling pathways involved in myelination. To correlate more effectively in vivo and in vitro data, we used purified cultures of mouse Schwann cells in addition to rat Schwann cells to examine two important myelin-related signals, cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP), and NRG1 and to determine whether they interact to control myelin differentiation. We find that in mouse Schwann cells, neither cAMP nor NRG1, when used separately, induced markers of myelin differentiation. When combined, however, they induced strong protein expression of the myelin markers, Krox-20 and P(0) . Importantly, the level of cAMP signaling was crucial in switching NRG1 from a proliferative signal to a myelin differentiation signal. Also in cultured rat Schwann cells, NRG1 promoted cAMP-induced Krox-20 and P(0) expression. Finally, we found that cAMP/NRG1-induced Schwann-cell differentiation required the activity of the cAMP response element binding family of transcription factors in both mouse and rat cells. These observations reconcile observations in vivo and on neuron-Schwann-cell cultures with studies on purified Schwann cells. They demonstrate unambiguously the promyelin effects of NRG1 in purified cells, and they show that the cAMP pathway determines whether NRG1 drives proliferation or induces myelin differentiation.Glia 05/2011; 59(5):720-33. DOI:10.1002/glia.21144 · 5.47 Impact Factor