[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The protein arginine methyltransferase 6 (PRMT6) is a coregulator of gene expression and executes its repressing as well as activating function by asymmetric dimethylation of histone H3 at R2 (H3 R2me2a). Given that elevated expression levels of PRMT6 have been reported in various cancer types, we explore here its role in cell proliferation and senescence. We find that knockdown of PRMT6 results in proliferation defects of transformed as well as non-transformed cells, causes G1-phase arrest and induces senescence. This phenotype is accompanied by transcriptional upregulation of important cell cycle regulators, most prominently the cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibitor gene p21 (p21(CIP1/WAF1), CDKN1A) and p16 (p16(INK4A), CDKN2A). Chromatin immuno-precipitation analysis reveals that the p21 gene is a direct target of PRMT6 and the corresponding histone mark H3 R2me2a. Using a cell model of oncogene-induced senescence (OIS), in which p21 is an essential activator of the senescent phenotype, we show that PRMT6 expression declines upon induction of senescence and conversely p21 gene expression increases. Moreover, overexpression of PRMT6 leads to reduced levels of OIS. These findings indicate that the transcriptional repressor activity of PRMT6 facilitates cell proliferation and blocks senescence by regulation of tumor suppressor genes and that this might contribute to the oncogenic capacity of PRMT6.
Nucleic Acids Research 08/2012; 40(19):9522-33. · 8.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the past years, a lot of attention has been given to the identification and characterization of selective and potent inhibitors of chromatin-modifying enzymes to better understand their specific role in transcriptional regulation. As aberrant histone methylation is involved in different pathological processes, the search for methyltransferase and demethylase inhibitors has emerged as a crucial issue in current medicinal chemistry research. High-throughput in vitro assays are important tools for the identification of new methyltransferase or demethylase inhibitors. These usually use oligopeptide substrates derived from histone sequences, although in many cases, they are not good substrates for these enzymes. Here, the authors report about the setup and establishment of in vitro assays that use native core histones as substrates, enabling an assay environment that better resembles native conditions. They have applied these substrates for the known formaldehyde dehydrogenase assay for the histone demethylase LSD1 and have established two new antibody-based assays. For LSD1, a heterogeneous assay format was set up, and a homogeneous assay was used for the characterization of the arginine methyltransferase PRMT1. Validation of the system was achieved with reference inhibitors in each case.
Journal of Biomolecular Screening 09/2011; 17(1):18-26. · 2.21 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This manuscript is being retracted at the authors' request. : Herewith we retract our Feature in Cell Cycle "Arginine methylation in interferon signaling: New light on an old story" by Weber and Bauer (Cell Cycle 8, 1464-5). In this Feature we discussed our data published in Genes & Development "PRMT1-mediated arginine methylation of PIAS1 regulates STAT1 signaling" by Weber et al. (Genes & Development 23, 118-132). In the process of following up the findings of the Genes & Development publication, researchers in the group of the corresponding author (U.M.B.) recently uncovered that the original experimental data points of a subset of quantitative PCR results were intentionally falsified by the first author (S.W.). As a consequence of these manipulations we could not maintain central conclusions drawn in the Genes & Development publication and retracted the article. Under these circumstances we wish to retract also the Cell Cycle Feature, as it comments on results, which are now questionable. We deeply apologize for any inconvenience this publication might have caused. : Susanne Weber: Uta-Maria Bauer.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bronchial asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease resulting from complex gene-environment interactions. Natural microbial exposure has been identified as an important environmental condition that provides asthma protection in a prenatal window of opportunity. Epigenetic regulation is an important mechanism by which environmental factors might interact with genes involved in allergy and asthma development.
This study was designed to test whether epigenetic mechanisms might contribute to asthma protection conferred by early microbial exposure.
Pregnant maternal mice were exposed to the farm-derived gram-negative bacterium Acinetobacter lwoffii F78. Epigenetic modifications in the offspring were analyzed in T(H)1- and T(H)2-relevant genes of CD4(+) T cells.
Prenatal administration of A lwoffii F78 prevented the development of an asthmatic phenotype in the progeny, and this effect was IFN-γ dependent. Furthermore, the IFNG promoter of CD4(+) T cells in the offspring revealed a significant protection against loss of histone 4 (H4) acetylation, which was closely associated with IFN-γ expression. Pharmacologic inhibition of H4 acetylation in the offspring abolished the asthma-protective phenotype. Regarding T(H)2-relevant genes only at the IL4 promoter, a decrease could be detected for H4 acetylation but not at the IL5 promoter or the intergenic T(H)2 regulatory region conserved noncoding sequence 1 (CNS1).
These data support the hygiene concept and indicate that microbes operate by means of epigenetic mechanisms. This provides a new mechanism in the understanding of gene-environment interactions in the context of allergy protection.
The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology 06/2011; 128(3):618-25.e1-7. · 12.05 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We describe the isolation and characterization of Friend of Prmt1 (Fop), a novel chromatin target of protein arginine methyltransferases. Human Fop is encoded by C1orf77, a gene of previously unknown function. We show that Fop is tightly associated with chromatin, and that it is modified by both asymmetric and symmetric arginine methylation in vivo. Furthermore, Fop plays an important role in the ligand-dependent activation of estrogen receptor target genes, including TFF1 (pS2). Fop depletion results in an almost complete block of estradiol-induced promoter occupancy by the estrogen receptor. Our data indicate that Fop recruitment to the promoter is an early critical event in the activation of estradiol-dependent transcription.
Molecular and Cellular Biology 10/2009; 30(1):260-72. · 5.04 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To elucidate the function of the transcriptional coregulator PRMT1 (protein arginine methyltranferase 1) in interferon (IFN) signaling, we investigated the expression of STAT1 (signal transducer and activator of transcription) target genes in PRMT1-depleted cells. We show here that PRMT1 represses a subset of IFNgamma-inducible STAT1 target genes in a methyltransferase-dependent manner. These genes are also regulated by the STAT1 inhibitor PIAS1 (protein inhibitor of activated STAT1). PIAS1 is arginine methylated by PRMT1 in vitro as well as in vivo upon IFN treatment. Mutational and mass spectrometric analysis of PIAS1 identifies Arg 303 as the single methylation site. Using both methylation-deficient and methylation-mimicking mutants, we find that arginine methylation of PIAS1 is essential for the repressive function of PRMT1 in IFN-dependent transcription and for the recruitment of PIAS1 to STAT1 target gene promoters in the late phase of the IFN response. Methylation-dependent promoter recruitment of PIAS1 results in the release of STAT1 and coincides with the decline of STAT1-activated transcription. Accordingly, knockdown of PRMT1 or PIAS1 enhances the anti-proliferative effect of IFNgamma. Our findings identify PRMT1 as a novel and crucial negative regulator of STAT1 activation that controls PIAS1-mediated repression by arginine methylation.
Genes & development 02/2009; 23(1):118-32. · 12.08 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Protein arginine methyltransferases (PRMT) have been implicated in the regulation of transcription. They are recruited to promoters via interaction with transcription factors and exert their coactivator function by methylating arginine residues in histones and other chromatin proteins. Here, we employ an unbiased approach to identify novel target genes, which are under the control of two members of the enzyme family, PRMT1 and CARM1/PRMT4 (coactivator associated arginine methyltransferase 1). By using cDNA microarray analysis, we find that the siRNA-mediated single knockdown of neither CARM1 nor PRMT1 causes significant changes in gene expression. In contrast, double knockdown of both enzymes results in the deregulated expression of a large group of genes, among them the CITED2 gene. Cytokine-stimulated expression analysis indicates that transcriptional activation of CITED2 depends on STAT5 and the coactivation of both PRMTs. ChIP analysis identifies the CITED2 gene as a direct target gene of STAT5, CARM1 and PRMT1. In reporter gene assays, we show that STAT5-mediated transcription is cooperatively enhanced by CARM1 and PRMT1. Interaction assays reveal a cytokine-induced association of STAT5 and the two PRMTs. Our data demonstrate a widespread cooperation of CARM1 and PRMT1 in gene activation as well as repression and that STAT5-dependent transcription of the CITED2 gene is a novel pathway coactivated by the two methyltransferases.
Nucleic Acids Research 07/2008; 36(10):3202-13. · 8.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The arginine methyltransferase PRMT6 (protein arginine methyltransferase 6) has been shown recently to regulate DNA repair and gene expression. As arginine methylation of histones is an important mechanism in transcriptional regulation, we asked whether PRMT6 possesses activity toward histones. We show here that PRMT6 methylates histone H3 at R2 and histones H4/H2A at R3 in vitro. Overexpression and knockdown analysis identify PRMT6 as the major H3 R2 methyltransferase in vivo. We find that H3 R2 methylation inhibits H3 K4 trimethylation and recruitment of WDR5, a subunit of the MLL (mixed lineage leukemia) K4 methyltransferase complex, to histone H3 in vitro. Upon PRMT6 overexpression, transcription of Hox genes and Myc-dependent genes, both well-known targets of H3 K4 trimethylation, decreases. This transcriptional repression coincides with enhanced occurrence of H3 R2 methylation and PRMT6 as well as reduced levels of H3 K4 trimethylation and MLL1/WDR5 recruitment at the HoxA2 gene. Upon retinoic acid-induced transcriptional activation of HoxA2 in a cell model of neuronal differentiation, PRMT6 recruitment and H3 R2 methylation are diminished and H3 K4 trimethylation increases at the gene. Our findings identify PRMT6 as the mammalian methyltransferase for H3 R2 and establish the enzyme as a crucial negative regulator of H3 K4 trimethylation and transcriptional activation.
Genes & Development 01/2008; 21(24):3369-80. · 12.44 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Induction of transcription requires an ordered recruitment of coregulators and specific combinations of histone modifications at the promoter. Occurrence of histone H4 arginine (Arg) 3 methylation by protein arginine methyltransferase 1 (PRMT1) represents an early promoter event in ER (estrogen receptor)-regulated gene activation. However, its in vivo significance in ER signaling and the prerequisites for PRMT1 recruitment to promoters have not been established yet. We show here that endogenous PRMT1 is a crucial and non-redundant coactivator of ER-mediated pS2 gene induction in MCF7 cells. By investigating promoter requirements for PRMT1 recruitment we find that the patient SE translocation (SET) protein, which was reported to protect histone tails from acetylation, associates with the uninduced pS2 gene promoter and dissociates early upon estrogen treatment. Knockdown of SET or trichostatin A (TSA) treatment causes premature acetylation of H4 and abrogation of H4 Arg3 methylation at the pS2 gene promoter resulting in diminished transcriptional induction. Thus, SET prevents promoter acetylation and is a prerequisite for the initial acetylation-sensitive steps of pS2 gene activation, namely PRMT1 function. Similar to pS2 we identify lactoferrin as a PRMT1-dependent and TSA-sensitive ER target gene. In contrast, we find that the C3 gene, another ER target, is activated in a PRMT1-independent manner and that SET is involved in C3 gene repression. These findings establish the existence of PRMT1-dependent and -independent ER target genes and show that proteins guarding promoter hypoacetylation, like SET, execute a key function in the coactivation process by PRMT1.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 10/2006; 281(37):27242-50. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cellular differentiation is governed by changes in gene expression, but at the same time, a cell's identity needs to be maintained through multiple cell divisions during maturation. In myeloid cell lines, retinoids induce gene expression and a well-characterized two-step lineage-specific differentiation. To identify mechanisms that contribute to cellular transcriptional memory, we analyzed the epigenetic changes taking place on regulatory regions of tissue transglutaminase, a gene whose expression is tightly linked to retinoid-induced differentiation. Here we report that the induction of an intermediary or "primed" state of myeloid differentiation is associated with increased H4 arginine 3 and decreased H3 lysine 4 methylation. These modifications occur before transcription and appear to prime the chromatin for subsequent hormone-regulated transcription. Moreover, inhibition of methyltransferase activity, pre-acetylation, or activation of the enzyme PAD4 attenuated retinoid-regulated gene expression, while overexpression of PRMT1, a methyltransferase, enhanced retinoid responsiveness. Taken together, our results suggest that H4 arginine 3 methylation is a bona fide positive epigenetic marker and regulator of transcriptional responsiveness as well as a signal integration mechanism during cell differentiation and, as such, may provide epigenetic memory.
Molecular and Cellular Biology 08/2005; 25(13):5648-63. · 5.04 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dynamic changes in the modification pattern of histones, such as acetylation, phosphorylation, methylation, and ubiquitination, are thought to provide a code for the correct regulation of gene expression mostly by affecting chromatin structure and interactions of non-histone regulatory factors with chromatin. Recent studies have suggested the existence of an interplay between histone modifications during transcription. The CBP/p300 acetylase and the CARM1 methyltransferase can positively regulate the expression of estrogen-responsive genes, but the existence of a crosstalk between lysine acetylation and arginine methylation on chromatin has not yet been established in vivo.
By following the in vivo pattern of modifications on histone H3, following estrogen stimulation of the pS2 promoter, we show that arginine methylation follows prior acetylation of H3. Within 15 min after estrogen stimulation, CBP is bound to chromatin, and acetylation of K18 takes place. Following these events, K23 is acetylated, CARM1 associates with chromatin, and methylation at R17 takes place. Exogenous expression of CBP is sufficient to drive the association of CARM1 with chromatin and methylation of R17 in vivo, whereas an acetylase-deficient CBP mutant is unable to induce these events. A mechanism for the observed cooperation between acetylation and arginine methylation comes from the finding that acetylation at K18 and K23, but not K14, tethers recombinant CARM1 to the H3 tail and allows it to act as a more efficient arginine methyltransferase.
These results reveal an ordered and interdependent deposition of acetylation and arginine methylation during estrogen-regulated transcription and provide support for a combinatorial role of histone modifications in gene expression.
Current Biology 01/2003; 12(24):2090-7. · 9.49 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The yeast Sir2 protein mediates chromatin silencing through an intrinsic NAD-dependent histone deacetylase activity. Sir2 is a conserved protein and was recently shown to regulate lifespan extension both in budding yeast and worms. Here, we show that SIRT1, the human Sir2 homolog, is recruited to the promyelocytic leukemia protein (PML) nuclear bodies of mammalian cells upon overexpression of either PML or oncogenic Ras (Ha-rasV12). SIRT1 binds and deacetylates p53, a component of PML nuclear bodies, and it can repress p53-mediated transactivation. Moreover, we show that SIRT1 and p53 co-localize in nuclear bodies upon PML upregulation. When overexpressed in primary mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs), SIRT1 antagonizes PML-induced acetylation of p53 and rescues PML-mediated premature cellular senescence. Taken together, our data establish the SIRT1 deacetylase as a novel negative regulator of p53 function capable of modulating cellular senescence.
The EMBO Journal 06/2002; 21(10):2383-96. · 9.82 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The nuclear hormone receptor co-activator CARM1 has the potential to methylate histone H3 at arginine residues in vitro. The methyltransferase activity of CARM1 is necessary for its co-activator functions in transient transfection assays. However, the role of this methyltransferase in vivo is unclear, given that methylation of arginines is not easily detectable on histones. We have raised an antibody that specifically recognizes methylated arginine 17 (R17) of histone H3, the major site of methylation by CARM1. Using this antibody we show that methylated R17 exists in vivo. Chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis shows that R17 methylation on histone H3 is dramatically upregulated when the estrogen receptor-regulated pS2 gene is activated. Coincident with the appearance of methylated R17, CARM1 is found associated with the histones on the pS2 gene. Together these results demonstrate that CARM1 is recruited to an active promoter and that CARM1-mediated R17 methylation on histone H3 takes place in vivo during this active state.