[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The alkylating DNA-damage agent N-methyl-N'-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine (MNNG) induces a form of caspase-independent necroptosis implicating the mitochondrial flavoprotein apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF). Following the activation of PARP-1 (poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1), calpains, BID (BH3 interacting domain death agonist), and BAX (Bcl-2-associated X protein), the apoptogenic form of AIF (tAIF) is translocated to the nucleus where, associated with Ser139-phosphorylated histone H2AX (γH2AX), it creates a DNA-degrading complex that provokes chromatinolysis and cell death by necroptosis. The generation of γH2AX is crucial for this form of cell death, as mutation of H2AX Ser139 to Ala or genetic ablation of H2AX abolish both chromatinolysis and necroptosis. On the contrary, reintroduction of H2AX-wt or the phosphomimetic H2AX mutant (H2AX-S139E) into H2AX(-/-) cells resensitizes to MNNG-triggered necroptosis. Employing a pharmacological approach and gene knockout cells, we also demonstrate in this paper that the phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase-related kinases (PIKKs) ATM (ataxia telangiectasia mutated) and DNA-dependent protein kinase (DNA-PK) mediate γH2AX generation and, consequently, MNNG-induced necroptosis. By contrast, H2AX phosphorylation is not regulated by ATR or other H2AX-related kinases, such as JNK. Interestingly, ATM and DNA-PK phosphorylate H2AX at Ser139 in a synergistic manner with different kinetics of activation. Early after MNNG treatment, ATM generates γH2AX. Further, DNA-PK contributes to H2AX Ser139 phosphorylation. In revealing the pivotal role of PIKKs in MNNG-induced cell death, our data uncover a milestone in the mechanisms regulating AIF-mediated caspase-independent necroptosis.
Cell Death & Disease 01/2012; 3:e390. · 6.04 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Alkylating DNA-damage agents such as N-methyl-N'-nitro-N'-nitrosoguanidine (MNNG) trigger necroptosis, a newly defined form of programmed cell death (PCD) managed by receptor interacting protein kinases. This caspase-independent mode of cell death involves the sequential activation of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 (PARP-1), calpains, BAX and AIF, which redistributes from mitochondria to the nucleus to promote chromatinolysis. We have previously demonstrated that the BAX-mediated mitochondrial release of AIF is a critical step in MNNG-mediated necroptosis. However, the mechanism regulating BAX activation in this PCD is poorly understood. Employing mouse embryonic knockout cells, we reveal that BID controls BAX activation in AIF-mediated necroptosis. Indeed, BID is a link between calpains and BAX in this mode of cell death. Therefore, even if PARP-1 and calpains are activated after MNNG treatment, BID genetic ablation abolishes both BAX activation and necroptosis. These PCD defects are reversed by reintroducing the BID-wt cDNA into the BID(-/-) cells. We also demonstrate that, after MNNG treatment, BID is directly processed into tBID by calpains. In this way, calpain non-cleavable BID proteins (BID-G70A or BID-Δ68-71) are unable to promote BAX activation and necroptosis. Once processed, tBID localizes in the mitochondria of MNNG-treated cells, where it can facilitate BAX activation and PCD. Altogether, our data reveal that, as in caspase-dependent apoptosis, BH3-only proteins are key regulators of caspase-independent necroptosis.
Cell death and differentiation 07/2011; 19(2):245-56. · 8.24 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ligation of the cell surface molecule CD44 by anti-CD44 monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) has been shown to induce cell differentiation, cell growth inhibition and in some cases, apoptosis in myeloid leukemic cells. We report, herein, that exposure of human erythroleukemic HEL cells to the anti-CD44 mAb A3D8 resulted in cell growth inhibition followed by caspase-independent apoptosis-like cell death. This process was associated with the disruption of mitochondrial membrane potential (Delta Psi m), the mitochondrial release of apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF), but not of cytochrome c, and the nuclear translocation of AIF. All these effects including cell death, loss of mitochondrial Delta Psi m and AIF release were blocked by pretreatment with the poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase inhibitor isoquinoline. A significant protection against cell death was also observed by using small interfering RNA for AIF. Moreover, we show that calpain protease was activated before the appearance of apoptosis, and that calpain inhibitors or transfection of calpain-siRNA decrease A3D8-induced cell death, and block AIF release. These data suggest that CD44 ligation triggers a novel caspase-independent cell death pathway via calpain-dependent AIF release in erythroleukemic HEL cells.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pulse-treatment of U-937 human promonocytic cells with cadmium chloride followed by recovery caused caspase-9/caspase-3-dependent, caspase-8-independent apoptosis. However, pre-incubation with the glutathione (GSH)-suppressing agent DL-buthionine-(S,R)-sulfoximine (cadmium/BSO), or co-treatment with H2O2 (cadmium/H2O2), switched the mode of death to caspase-independent necrosis. The switch from apoptosis to necrosis did not involve gross alterations in Apaf-1 and pro-caspase-9 expression, nor inhibition of cytochrome c release from mitochondria. However, cadmium/H2O2-induced necrosis involved ATP depletion and was prevented by 3-aminobenzamide, while cadmium/BSO-induced necrosis was ATP independent. Pre-incubation with BSO increased the intracellular cadmium accumulation, while co-treatment with H2O2 did not. Both treatments caused intracellular peroxide over-accumulation and disruption of mitochondrial transmembrane potential (delta psi m). However, while post-treatment with N-acetyl-L-cysteine or butylated hydroxyanisole reduced the cadmium/BSO-mediated necrosis and delta psi m disruption, it did not reduce the effects of cadmium/H2O2. Bcl-2 over-expression, which reduced peroxide accumulation without affecting the intracellular GSH content, attenuated necrosis generation by cadmium/H2O2 but not by cadmium/BSO. By contrast, AIF suppression, which reduced peroxide accumulation and increased the GSH content, attenuated the toxicity of both treatments. These results unravel the existence of two different oxidation-mediated necrotic pathways in cadmium-treated cells, one of them resulting from ATP-dependent apoptosis blockade, and the other involving the concurrence of multiple regulatory factors.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Programmed cell death (PCD) is a major component of normal development, preservation of tissue homeostasis, and elimination of damaged cells. Many studies have subdivided PCD into the three categories of apoptosis, autophagy, and necrosis based on criteria such as morphological alterations, initiating death signal, or the implication of caspases. However, these classifications fail to address the interplay between the three types of PCD. In this review, we will discuss the central role of the mitochondrion in the integration of the cell death pathways. Mitochondrial alterations such as the release of sequestered apoptogenic proteins, loss of transmembrane potential, production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), disruption of the electron transport chain, and decreases in ATP synthesis have been shown to be involved in, and possibly responsible for, the different manifestations of cell death. Thus, the mitochondria can be viewed as a central regulator of the decision between cellular survival and demise.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: As shown here, mitochondria purified from different organs (liver, brain, kidney, spleen and heart) contain both pro-caspase-9 and the processed, mature form of caspase-9. Purified liver mitochondria release mature caspase-9 upon induction of permeability transition in vitro. This is accompanied by a discrete increase in the enzymatic cleavage of pro-caspase-9 substrates. We found that SHEP neuroblastoma cells constitutively contain pre-processed caspase-9 in their mitochondria, using a combination of subcellular fractionation and immunofluorescence with an antibody specific for the processed caspase. This is a cell type-specific phenomenon since HeLa cells mitochondria mainly contain pro-caspase-9 and comparatively little processed caspase-9. Upon introduction of apoptosis, mitochondrial pro-caspase-9 translocates to the cytosol and to the nucleus. This phenomenon is inhibited by transfection with Bcl-2. In synthesis, we report the unexpected finding that mitochondria can contain a pre-processed caspase isoform in non-apoptotic cells. Bcl-2-mediated regulation of mitochondrial membrane permeabilization may contribute to apoptosis control by preventing mitochondrial, pre-processed caspase-9 from interacting with its cytosolic activators.
Cell Death and Differentiation 02/2002; 9(1):82-8. · 8.37 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Heat-shock protein 70 (Hsp70) has been reported to block apoptosis by binding apoptosis protease activating factor-1 (Apaf-1), thereby preventing constitution of the apoptosome, the Apaf-1/cytochrome c/caspase-9 activation complex [1,2]. Here we show that overexpression of Hsp70 protects Apaf-1-/- cells against death induced by serum withdrawal, indicating that Apaf-1 is not the only target of the anti-apoptotic action of Hsp70. We investigated the effect of Hsp70 on apoptosis mediated by the caspase-independent death effector apoptosis inducing factor (AIF), which is a mitochondrial intermembrane flavoprotein [3,4]. In a cell-free system, Hsp70 prevented the AIF-induced chromatin condensation of purified nuclei. Hsp70 specifically interacted with AIF, as shown by ligand blots and co-immunoprecipitation. Cells overexpressing Hsp70 were protected against the apoptogenic effects of AIF targeted to the extramitochondrial compartment. In contrast, an anti-sense Hsp70 complementary DNA, which reduced the expression of endogenous Hsp70, increased sensitivity to the lethal effect of AIF. The ATP-binding domain of Hsp70 seemed to be dispensable for inhibiting cell death induced by serum withdrawal, AIF binding and AIF inhibition, although it was required for Apaf-1 binding. Together, our data indicate that Hsp70 can inhibit apoptosis by interfering with target proteins other than Apaf-1, one of which is AIF.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF) is a mitochondrial flavoprotein, which translocates to the nucleus during apoptosis and causes chromatin condensation and large scale DNA fragmentation. Here we report the biochemical characterization of AIF's redox activity. Natural AIF purified from mitochondria and recombinant AIF purified from bacteria (AIFDelta1-120) exhibit NADH oxidase activity, whereas superoxide anion (O(2)(-)) is formed. AIFDelta1-120 is a monomer of 57 kDa containing 1 mol of noncovalently bound FAD/mol of protein. ApoAIFDelta1-120, which lacks FAD, has no NADH oxidase activity. However, native AIFDelta1-120, apoAIFDelta1-120, and the reconstituted (FAD-containing) holoAIFDelta1-120 protein exhibit a similar apoptosis-inducing potential when microinjected into the cytoplasm of intact cells. Inhibition of the redox function, by external addition of superoxide dismutase or covalent derivatization of FAD with diphenyleneiodonium, failed to affect the apoptogenic function of AIFDelta1-120 assessed on purified nuclei in a cell-free system. Conversely, blockade of the apoptogenic function of AIFDelta1-120 with the thiol reagent para- chloromercuriphenylsulfonic acid did not affect its NADH oxidase activity. Altogether, these data indicate that AIF has a marked oxidoreductase activity which can be dissociated from its apoptosis-inducing function.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2001; 276(19):16391-8. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The complete AIF cDNA comprising the amino-terminal mitochondrial localization sequence (MLS) and the oxidoreductase domain has been fused in its carboxyl terminus to enhanced green fluorescent protein (GFP), thereby engineering an AIF-GFP fusion protein that is selectively targeted to the mitochondrial intermembrane space. Upon induction of apoptosis, the AIF-GFP protein translocates together with cytochrome c (Cyt-c) to the extramitochondrial compartment. Microinjection of recombinant AIF leads to the release of AIF-GFP and Cyt-c-GFP, indicating that ectopic AIF can favor permeabilization of the outer mitochondrial membrane. These mitochondrial effects of AIF are caspase independent, whereas the Cyt-c-microinjection induced translocation of AIF-GFP and Cyt-c-GFP is suppressed by the pan-caspase inhibitor Z-VAD.fmk. Upon prolonged culture, transfection-enforced overexpression of AIF results in spontaneous translocation of AIF-GFP from mitochondria, nuclear chromatin condensation, and cell death. These effects are caspase independent and do not rely on the oxidoreductase function of AIF. Spontaneous AIF-GFP translocation and subsequent nuclear apoptosis can be retarded by overexpression of a Bcl-2 protein selectively targeted to mitochondria, but not by a Bcl-2 protein targeted to the endoplasmic reticulum. Overexpression of a mutant AIF protein in which the MLS has been deleted (AIF Delta 1-100) results in the primary cytosolic accumulation of AIF. AIF Delta 1-100-induced cell death is suppressed by neither Z-VAD.fmk or by Bcl-2. Thus, extramitochondrially targeted AIF is a dominant cell death inducer.
The FASEB Journal 04/2001; 15(3):758-67. · 5.70 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Programmed cell death is a fundamental requirement for embryogenesis, organ metamorphosis and tissue homeostasis. In mammals, release of mitochondrial cytochrome c leads to the cytosolic assembly of the apoptosome-a caspase activation complex involving Apaf1 and caspase-9 that induces hallmarks of apoptosis. There are, however, mitochondrially regulated cell death pathways that are independent of Apaf1/caspase-9. We have previously cloned a molecule associated with programmed cell death called apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF). Like cytochrome c, AIF is localized to mitochondria and released in response to death stimuli. Here we show that genetic inactivation of AIF renders embryonic stem cells resistant to cell death after serum deprivation. Moreover, AIF is essential for programmed cell death during cavitation of embryoid bodies-the very first wave of cell death indispensable for mouse morphogenesis. AIF-dependent cell death displays structural features of apoptosis, and can be genetically uncoupled from Apaf1 and caspase-9 expression. Our data provide genetic evidence for a caspase-independent pathway of programmed cell death that controls early morphogenesis.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To understand the roles of bcl-2 for the survival of leukemic cells, we constructed human leukemic HL60 transformant lines in which full length bcl-2 antisense message was conditionally expressed by a tetracycline-regulatable expression system. Cell growth was completely inhibited after antisense message induction and massive cell death was induced. Electron microscopic examinations show that cells died by autophagy, but not by apoptosis. The morphology and the function of mitochondria remained intact: neither the reduction in mitochondrial membrane potential nor the nuclear translocation of AIF, a mitochondrial protein that translocates to nuclei in cases of apoptosis, was observed. Caspase inhibitors did not rescue bcl-2-antisense-mediated autophagy. Thus, bcl-2 is essential for leukemic cell survival and its down-regulation results in autophagy. Cell Death and Differentiation (2000) 7, 1263 - 1269.
Cell Death and Differentiation 01/2001; 7(12):1263-9. · 8.37 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Lipid and glycolipid diffusible mediators are involved in the intracellular progression and amplification of apoptotic signals. GD3 ganglioside is rapidly synthesized from accumulated ceramide after the clustering of death-inducing receptors and triggers apoptosis. Here we show that GD3 induces dissipation of DeltaPsim and swelling of isolated mitochondria, which results in the mitochondrial release of cytochrome c, apoptosis inducing factor, and caspase 9. Soluble factors released from GD3-treated mitochondria are sufficient to trigger DNA fragmentation in isolated nuclei. All these effects can be blocked by cyclosporin A, suggesting that GD3 is acting at the level of the permeability transition pore complex. We found that endogenous GD3 accumulates within mitochondria of cells undergoing apoptosis after ceramide exposure. Accordingly, suppression of GD3 synthase (ST8) expression in intact cells substantially prevents ceramide-induced DeltaPsim dissipation, indicating that endogenously synthesized GD3 induces mitochondrial changes in vivo. Finally, enforced expression of bcl-2 significantly prevents GD3-induced mitochondrial changes, caspase 9 activation, and apoptosis. These results show that mitochondria are a key destination for apoptogenic GD3 ganglioside along the lipid pathway to programmed cell death and indicate that relevant GD3 targets are under bcl-2 control.
The FASEB Journal 11/2000; 14(13):2047-54. · 5.70 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Syncytia arising from the fusion of cells expressing a lymphotropic HIV type 1-encoded envelope glycoprotein complex (Env) with cells expressing the CD4/CXC chemokine receptor 4 complex spontaneously undergo cell death. Here we show that this process is accompanied by caspase activation and signs of mitochondrial membrane permeabilization (MMP), including the release of intermembrane proteins such as cytochrome c (Cyt-c) and apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF) from mitochondria. In Env-induced syncytia, caspase inhibition did not suppress AIF- and Cyt-c translocation, yet it prevented all signs of nuclear apoptosis. Translocation of Bax to mitochondria led to MMP, which was inhibited by microinjected Bcl-2 protein or bcl-2 transfection. Bcl-2 also prevented the subsequent nuclear chromatin condensation and DNA fragmentation. The release of AIF occurred before that of Cyt-c and before caspase activation. Microinjection of AIF into syncytia sufficed to trigger rapid, caspase-independent Cyt-c release. Neutralization of endogenous AIF by injection of an antibody prevented all signs of spontaneous apoptosis occurring in syncytia, including the Cyt-c release and nuclear apoptosis. In contrast, Cyt-c neutralization only prevented nuclear apoptosis, and did not affect AIF release. Our results establish that the following molecular sequence governs apoptosis of Env-induced syncytia: Bax-mediated/Bcl-2-inhibited MMP --> AIF release --> Cyt-c release --> caspase activation --> nuclear apoptosis.
Journal of Experimental Medicine 10/2000; 192(8):1081-92. · 13.21 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Dolichyl monophosphate (Dol-P) has been found to induce apoptosis in human leukemia U937 cells. During this apoptotic execution, the increase of plasma membrane fluidity (5-20 min), caspase-3-like protease activation (2-4 h), chromatin condensation and DNA ladder formation (3-4 h) were observed successively. Here, we report that reduction in mitochondrial transmembrane potential and translocation of apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF) are early events (1-3 h) in the apoptotic process induced by Dol-P in U937 cells. The AIF was concentrated around nuclei and partly translocated to the nuclei, which was confirmed by immunocytochemistry using specific anti-AIF antibody. Both caspase-8 and caspase-3 inhibitors blocked only DNA fragmentation but not mitochondrial processes, AIF migration and chromatin condensation. These results indicate that mitochondrial changes are an early step in the apoptosis induced by Dol-P and AIF is one of the important factors which induce chromatin condensation in nuclei.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mammalian cells respond to stress by accumulating or activating a set of highly conserved proteins known as heat-shock proteins (HSPs). Several of these proteins interfere negatively with apoptosis. We show that the small HSP known as Hsp27 inhibits cytochrome-c-mediated activation of caspases in the cytosol. Hsp27 does not interfere with granzyme-B-induced activation of caspases, nor with apoptosis-inducing factor-mediated, caspase-independent, nuclear changes. Hsp27 binds to cytochrome c released from the mitochondria to the cytosol and prevents cytochrome-c-mediated interaction of Apaf-1 with procaspase-9. Thus, Hsp27 interferes specifically with the mitochondrial pathway of caspase-dependent cell death.