Functional RNA Interference (RNAi) Screen Identifies System A Neutral Amino Acid Transporter 2 (SNAT2) as a Mediator of Arsenic-induced Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress

ArticleinJournal of Biological Chemistry 287(8):6025-34 · January 2012with43 Reads
DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M111.311217 · Source: PubMed
Exposure to the toxic metalloid arsenic is associated with diabetes and cancer and causes proteotoxicity and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress at the cellular level. Adaptive responses to ER stress are implicated in cancer and diabetes; thus, understanding mechanisms of arsenic-induced ER stress may offer insights into pathogenesis. Here, we identify genes required for arsenite-induced ER stress response in a genome-wide RNAi screen. Using an shRNA library targeting ∼20,000 human genes, together with an ER stress cell model, we performed flow cytometry-based cell sorting to isolate cells with defective response to arsenite. Our screen discovered several genes modulating arsenite-induced ER stress, including sodium-dependent neutral amino acid transporter, SNAT2. SNAT2 expression and activity are up-regulated by arsenite, in a manner dependent on activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4), an important mediator of the integrated stress response. Inhibition of SNAT2 expression or activity or deprivation of its primary substrate, glutamine, specifically suppressed ER stress induced by arsenite but not tunicamycin. Induction of SNAT2 is coincident with the activation of the nutrient-sensing mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway, which is at least partially required for arsenite-induced ER stress. Importantly, inhibition of the SNAT2 or the System L transporter, LAT1, suppressed mTOR activation by arsenite, supporting a role for these transporters in modulating amino acid signaling. These findings reveal SNAT2 as an important and specific mediator of arsenic-induced ER stress, and suggest a role for aberrant mTOR activation in arsenic-related human diseases. Furthermore, this study demonstrates the utility of RNAi screens in elucidating cellular mechanisms of environmental toxins.
    • "siRNAs could also be transformed from short hairpin RNA (shRNA) within transfected cells. The findings led to the development of siRNA-directed reverse genetics methods, which included RNAi library construction and screening systems [2,678. Methodological progress has also revealed that the efficiency of knockdown depends on sequence within each siRNA [9, 10]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: RNA interference (RNAi) screening is extensively used in the field of reverse genetics. RNAi libraries constructed using random oligonucleotides have made this technology affordable. However, the new methodology requires exploration of the RNAi target gene information after screening because the RNAi library includes non-natural sequences that are not found in genes. Here, we developed a web-based tool to support RNAi screening. The system performs short hairpin RNA (shRNA) target prediction that is informed by comprehensive enquiry (SPICE). SPICE automates several tasks that are laborious but indispensable to evaluate the shRNAs obtained by RNAi screening. SPICE has four main functions: (i) sequence identification of shRNA in the input sequence (the sequence might be obtained by sequencing clones in the RNAi library), (ii) searching the target genes in the database, (iii) demonstrating biological information obtained from the database, and (iv) preparation of search result files that can be utilized in a local personal computer (PC). Using this system, we demonstrated that genes targeted by random oligonucleotide-derived shRNAs were not different from those targeted by organism-specific shRNA. The system facilitates RNAi screening, which requires sequence analysis after screening. The SPICE web application is available at Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13637-016-0039-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2016
    • "These results suggest that blocking of SNAT2 could reduce β cell failure in type 2 diabetes. In a related study, C/EBP-homologous protein expression was used as a read-out for the induction of ER stress by arsenite [129]. A genome-wide silencing screen revealed SNAT2 as a key protein required for the onset of ER stress. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transporters of the SLC38 family are found in all cell types of the body. They mediate Na(+)-dependent net uptake and efflux of small neutral amino acids. As a result they are particularly expressed in cells that grow actively, or in cells that carry out significant amino acid metabolism, such as liver, kidney and brain. SLC38 transporters occur in membranes that face intercellular space or blood vessels, but do not occur in the apical membrane of absorptive epithelia. In the placenta, they play a significant role in the transfer of amino acids to the foetus. Members of the SLC38 family are highly regulated in response to amino acid depletion, hypertonicity and hormonal stimuli. SLC38 transporters play an important role in amino acid signalling and have been proposed to act as transceptors independent of their transport function. The structure of SLC38 transporters is characterised by the 5 + 5 inverted repeat fold, which is observed in a wide variety of transport proteins.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013
    • "We also demonstrate here that the mechanism of these alterations is related to the activation of UPR signaling pathway. Although arsenic is known to induce UPR signaling in multiple cell-types (Binet et al., 2010; Lu et al., 2011; Oh et al., 2012; Yen et al., 2012), it was not shown whether arsenic can induce UPR signaling in macrophages and whether activated UPR signaling plays key role(s) in arsenic-induced impairment of macrophage functions. The demonstration in the present study that chemical chaperone PBA protects against arsenic-induced alterations in macrophage functions and survival by attenuating UPR signaling provides a novel mechanism by which arsenic mediates its toxicity to disrupt innate immune functions. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Arsenic exposure is known to disrupt innate immune functions in humans and in experimental animals. In this study, we provide a mechanism by which arsenic trioxide (ATO) disrupts macrophage functions. ATO treatment of murine macrophage cells diminished internalization of FITC-labeled latex beads, impaired clearance of phagocytosed fluorescent bacteria and reduced secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines. These impairments in macrophage functions are associated with ATO-induced unfolded protein response (UPR) signaling pathway characterized by the enhancement in proteins such as GRP78, p-PERK, p-eIF2α, ATF4 and CHOP. The expression of these proteins is altered both at transcriptional and translational levels. Pretreatment with chemical chaperon, 4-phenylbutyric acid (PBA) attenuated the ATO-induced activation in UPR signaling and afforded protection against ATO-induced disruption of macrophage functions. This treatment also reduced ATO-mediated reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. Interestingly, treatment with antioxidant N-acetylcysteine (NAC) prior to ATO exposure, not only reduced ROS production and UPR signaling but also improved macrophage functions. These data demonstrate that UPR signaling and ROS generation are interdependent and are involved in the arsenic-induced pathobiology of macrophage. These data also provide a novel strategy to block the ATO-dependent impairment in innate immune responses.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2013
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