Phenobarbital-Responsive Nuclear Translocation of the Receptor CAR in Induction of the CYP2B Gene

Pharmacogenetics Section, Laboratory of Reproductive and Developmental Toxicology, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27709, USA.
Molecular and Cellular Biology (Impact Factor: 4.78). 10/1999; 19(9):6318-22. DOI: 10.1128/MCB.19.9.6318
Source: PubMed


The constitutively active receptor (CAR) transactivates a distal enhancer called the phenobarbital (PB)-responsive enhancer module (PBREM) found in PB-inducible
genes. CAR dramatically increases its binding to PBREM in livers of PB-treated mice. We have investigated the cellular mechanism of PB-induced increase of CAR binding. Western blot analyses of mouse livers revealed an extensive nuclear accumulation of CAR following PB treatment. Nuclear contents of CAR perfectly correlate with an increase of CAR binding to PBREM. PB-elicited nuclear accumulation of CAR appears to be a general step regulating the induction of
genes, since treatments with other PB-type inducers result in the same nuclear accumulation of CAR. Both immunoprecipitation and immunohistochemistry studies show cytoplasmic localization of CAR in the livers of nontreated mice, indicating that CAR translocates into nuclei following PB treatment. Nuclear translocation of CAR also occurs in mouse primary hepatocytes but not in hepatocytes treated with the protein phosphatase inhibitor okadaic acid. Thus, the CAR-mediated transactivation of PBREM in vivo becomes PB responsive through an okadaic acid-sensitive nuclear translocation process.

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    • "Consistent with its initial designation, CAR is constitutively activated in immortalized cell lines and spontaneously accumulated in the nucleus without xenobiotic stimulation [23] [24]. In contrast, CAR is sequestered in the cytoplasm of the more physiologically relevant primary hepatocytes before activation [25]. In primary hepatocytes, CAR forms a cytoplasmic multiprotein complex with a number of chaperone proteins and only translocates to the nucleus upon chemical-stimulated activation [26]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) modulates the transcription of numerous genes involving drug metabolism, energy homeostasis, and cell proliferation. Most functions of CAR however were defined from animal studies. Given the known species difference of CAR and the significant cross-talk between CAR and the pregnane X receptor (PXR), it is extremely difficult to decipher the exact role of human CAR (hCAR) in gene regulation, relying predominantly on pharmacological manipulations. Here, utilizing a newly generated hCAR-knockout (KO) HepaRG cell line, we carried out RNA-seq analysis of the global transcriptomes in wild-type (WT) and hCAR-KO HepaRG cells treated with CITCO, a selective hCAR agonist, phenobarbital (PB), a dual activator of hCAR and hPXR, or vehicle control. Real-time PCR assays in separate experiments were used to validate RNA-seq findings. Our results indicate that genes encoding drug-metabolizing enzymes are among the main clusters altered by both CITCO and PB. Specifically, CITCO significantly changed the expression of 135 genes in an hCAR-dependent manner, while PB altered the expression of 227 genes in WT cells of which 94 were simultaneously modulated in both cell lines reflecting dual effects of PB on hCAR/PXR. Notably, we found that many genes promoting cell proliferation and tumorigenesis were up-regulated in hCAR-KO cells, suggesting that hCAR may play an important role in cell growth that differs from mouse CAR. Together, our results reveal both novel and known targets of hCAR and support the role of hCAR in maintaining the homeostasis of metabolism and cell proliferation in the liver. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.
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    • "Promiscuous NRs bind to a wide range of different molecules and, depending on the molecule, activate the transcription of a wide range of proteins. Some of these promiscuous NRs are involved in inducing phase I-III responses following exposure to toxicants (Kliewer et al., 1998; Kawamoto et al., 1999; Wei et al., 2000; King-Jones et al., 2006; Karimullina et al., 2012). It has been hypothesized that specificity/promiscuity comes into play when examining the evolution of nuclear receptors due to natural selection. "
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    ABSTRACT: Most nuclear receptors (NRs) are ligand-dependent transcription factors crucial in homeostatic physiological responses or environmental responses. We annotated the Daphniamagna NRs and compared them to Daphniapulex and other species, primarily through phylogenetic analysis. Daphnia species contain 26 NRs spanning all seven gene subfamilies. Thirteen of the 26 receptors found in Daphnia species phylogenetically segregate into the NR1 subfamily, primarily involved in energy metabolism and resource allocation. Some of the Daphnia NRs, such as RXR, HR96, and E75 show strong conservation between D. magna and D. pulex. Other receptors, such as EcRb, THRL-11 and RARL-10 have diverged considerably and therefore may show different functions in the two species. Curiously, there is an inverse association between the number of NR splice variants and conservation of the LBD. Overall, D. pulex and D. magna possess the same NRs; however not all of the NRs demonstrate high conservation indicating the potential for a divergence of function.
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    • "phenobarbital (PB)-like inducers via interactions with DR4 motifs (Kawamoto et al. 1999). It therefore acts as a xenobiotic-sensing nuclear receptor. "
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    ABSTRACT: Antagonizing the action of the pregnane X receptor (PXR) may have important clinical implications for preventing inducer-drug interactions and improving therapeutic efficacy. We identified a widely distributed isothiocyanate, allyl isothiocyanate (AITC), which acts as an effective antagonist of the nuclear receptor pregnane X receptor (PXR, NR1I2) and constitutive androstane receptor (CAR, NR1I3). HepG2 cells were used to assay reporter function, mRNA levels, and protein expression. Catalytic activities of the PXR and CAR target genes, CYP3A4 and CYP2B6, respectively, were also assessed in differentiated HepaRG cells. Protective effects of AITC on rifampin-induced cytotoxicity were observed, and transient transfection assays showed that AITC was able to effectively attenuate the agonist effects of rifampin and CITCO on human PXR and CAR activity, respectively. AITC-mediated reduction in the transcriptional activity of PXR and CAR correlated well with the suppression of CYP3A4 and CYP2B6 expression in HepG2 cells, which reflected the reduced catalytic activities of both of these genes following AITC treatment in differentiated HepaRG cells. Furthermore, AITC disrupts the co-regulations of PXR with several important co-regulators. Furthermore, the antagonist effect of AITC against PXR was found in HepaRG cells upon addition of acetaminophen (APAP) and amiodarone, indicating that AITC protects cells from drug-induced cytotoxicity. Taken together, our results show that AITC inhibits the transactivation effects of PXR and CAR and reduces the expression and function of CYP3A4 and CYP2B6. Additionally, AITC reversed the cytotoxic effects of APAP and amiodarone induced by PXR ligand. Results from this study suggest that AITC could be a powerful agent for reducing potentially dangerous interactions between transcriptional inducers of CYP enzymes and therapeutic drugs.
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