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Yiru Chen Zhao1, Zeynep Madak Erdogan1
1Department of Food Sciences and Human Nutrition, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Molecular Endocrinology (Baltimore, Md.). Mar, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16306086
Estrogenic hormones are classically thought to exert their effects by binding to nuclear estrogen receptors and altering target gene transcription, but estrogens can also have nongenomic effects through rapid activation of membrane-initiated kinase cascades. The development of ligands that selectively activate only the nongenomic pathways would provide useful tools to investigate the significance of these pathways. We have prepared large, abiotic, nondegradable poly(amido)amine dendrimer macromolecules that are conjugated to multiple estrogen molecules through chemically robust linkages. Because of their charge and size, these estrogen-dendrimer conjugates (EDCs) remain outside the nucleus. They stimulate ERK, Shc, and Src phosphorylation in MCF-7 breast cancer cells at low concentrations, yet they are very ineffective in stimulating transcription of endogenous estrogen target genes, being approximately 10,000-fold less potent than estradiol in genomic actions. In contrast to estradiol, EDC was not effective in stimulating breast cancer cell proliferation. Because these EDC ligands activate nongenomic activity at concentrations at which they do not alter the transcription of estrogen target genes, they should be useful in studying extranuclear initiated pathways of estrogen action in a variety of target cells.
Molecular Endocrinology (Baltimore, Md.). Sep, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18617595
Whereas estrogens exert their effects by binding to nuclear estrogen receptors (ERs) and directly altering target gene transcription, they can also initiate extranuclear signaling through activation of kinase cascades. We have investigated the impact of estrogen-mediated extranuclear-initiated pathways on global gene expression by using estrogen-dendrimer conjugates (EDCs), which because of their charge and size remain outside the nucleus and can only initiate extranuclear signaling. Genome-wide cDNA microarray analysis of MCF-7 breast cancer cells identified a subset of 17beta-estradiol (E2)-regulated genes ( approximately 25%) as EDC responsive. The EDC and E2-elicited increases in gene expression were due to increases in gene transcription, as observed in nuclear run-on assays and RNA polymerase II recruitment and phosphorylation. Treatment with antiestrogen or ERalpha knockdown using small interfering RNA abolished EDC-mediated gene stimulation, whereas GPR30 knockdown or treatment with a GPR30-selective ligand was without effect, indicating ER as the mediator of these gene regulations. Inhibitors of MAPK kinase and c-Src suppressed both E2 and EDC stimulated gene expression. Of note, in chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, EDC was unable to recruit ERalpha to estrogen-responsive regions of regulated genes, whereas ERalpha recruitment by E2 was very effective. These findings suggest that other transcription factors or kinases that are downstream effectors of EDC-initiated extranuclear signaling cascades are recruited to regulatory regions of EDC-responsive genes in order to elicit gene stimulation. This study thus highlights the importance of inputs from both nuclear and extranuclear ER signaling pathways in regulating patterns of gene expression in breast cancer cells.
Molecular and Cellular Biology. Apr, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19188451
The regulation of gene expression by nuclear receptors controls the phenotypic properties and diverse biologies of target cells. In breast cancer cells, estrogen receptor alpha (ERalpha) is a master regulator of transcriptional stimulation and repression, yet the mechanisms by which agonist-bound ERalpha elicits repression are poorly understood. We analyzed early estrogen-repressed genes and found that ERalpha is recruited to ERalpha binding sites of these genes, albeit more transiently and less efficiently than for estrogen-stimulated genes. Of multiple cofactors studied, only p300 was recruited to ERalpha binding sites of repressed genes, and its knockdown prevented estrogen-mediated gene repression. Because p300 is involved in transcription initiation, we tested whether ERalpha might be trying to stimulate transcription at repressed genes, with ultimately failure and a shift to a repressive program. We found that estrogen increases transcription in a rapid but transient manner at early estrogen-repressed genes but that this is followed by recruitment of the corepressor CtBP1, a p300-interacting partner that plays an essential role in the repressive process. Thus, at early estrogen-repressed genes, ERalpha initiates transient stimulation of transcription but fails to maintain the transcriptional process observed at estrogen-stimulated genes; rather, it uses p300 to recruit CtBP1-containing complexes, eliciting chromatin modifications that lead to transcriptional repression.
The Journal of Clinical Investigation. Jul, 2010 | Pubmed ID: 20577047
Steroid hormone receptors function classically in the nucleus as transcription factors. However, recent data indicate that there are also non-nuclear subpopulations of steroid hormone receptors, including estrogen receptors (ERs), that mediate membrane-initiated signaling of unclear basis and significance. Here we have shown that an estrogen-dendrimer conjugate (EDC) that is excluded from the nucleus stimulates endothelial cell proliferation and migration via ERalpha, direct ERalpha-Galphai interaction, and endothelial NOS (eNOS) activation. Analysis of mice carrying an estrogen response element luciferase reporter, ER-regulated genes in the mouse uterus, and eNOS enzyme activation further indicated that EDC specifically targets non-nuclear processes in vivo. In mice, estradiol and EDC equally stimulated carotid artery reendothelialization in an ERalpha- and G protein-dependent manner, and both agents attenuated the development of neointimal hyperplasia following endothelial injury. In contrast, endometrial carcinoma cell growth in vitro and uterine enlargement and MCF-7 cell breast cancer xenograft growth in vivo were stimulated by estradiol but not EDC. Thus, EDC is a non-nuclear selective ER modulator (SERM) in vivo, and in mice, non-nuclear ER signaling promotes cardiovascular protection. These processes potentially could be harnessed to provide vascular benefit without increasing the risk of uterine or breast cancer.
Molecular and Cellular Biology. Jan, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 20956553
The nuclear hormone receptor, estrogen receptor α (ERα), and mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) play key roles in hormone-dependent cancers, and yet their interplay and the integration of their signaling inputs remain poorly understood. In these studies, we document that estrogen-occupied ERα activates and interacts with extracellular signal-regulated kinase 2 (ERK2), a downstream effector in the MAPK pathway, resulting in ERK2 and ERα colocalization at chromatin binding sites across the genome of breast cancer cells. This genomic colocalization, predominantly at conserved distal enhancer sites, requires the activation of both ERα and ERK2 and enables ERK2 modulation of estrogen-dependent gene expression and proliferation programs. The ERK2 substrate CREB1 was also activated and recruited to ERK2-bound chromatin following estrogen treatment and found to cooperate with ERα/ERK2 in regulating gene transcription and cell cycle progression. Our study reveals a novel paradigm with convergence of ERK2 and ERα at the chromatin level that positions this kinase to support nuclear receptor activities in crucial and direct ways, a mode of collaboration likely to underlie MAPK regulation of gene expression by other nuclear receptors as well.
Toxicological Sciences : an Official Journal of the Society of Toxicology. Feb, 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22071320
Although crosstalk between aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) and estrogen receptor α (ERα) is well established, the mechanistic basis and involvement of other proteins in this process are not known. Because we observed an enrichment of AhR-binding motifs in ERα-binding sites of many estradiol (E2)-regulated genes, we investigated how AhR might modulate ERα-mediated gene transcription in breast cancer cells. Gene regulations were categorized based on their pattern of stimulation by E2 and/or dioxin and were denoted E2-responsive, dioxin-responsive, or responsive to either ligand. ERα, AhR, aryl hydrocarbon receptor translocator, and receptor interacting protein 140 (RIP140) were recruited to gene regulatory regions in a gene-specific and E2/dioxin ligand-specific manner. Knockdown of AhR markedly increased the expression of ERα-mediated genes upon E2 treatment. This was not attributable to a change in ERα level, or recruitment of ERα, phosphoSer5-RNA Pol II, or several coregulators but rather was associated with greatly diminished recruitment of the coregulator RIP140 to gene regulatory sites. Changing the cellular level of RIP140 revealed coactivator or corepressor roles for this coregulator in E2- and dioxin-mediated gene regulation, the choice of which was determined by the presence or absence of ERα at gene regulatory sites. Coimmunoprecipitation and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP)-reChIP studies documented that E2- or dioxin-promoted formation of a multimeric complex of ERα, AhR, and RIP140 at ERα-binding sites of genes regulated by either E2 or dioxin. Our findings highlight the importance of cross-regulation between AhR and ERα and a novel mechanism by which AhR controls, through modulating the recruitment of RIP140 to ERα-binding sites, the kinetics and magnitude of ERα-mediated gene stimulation.
Hormones & Cancer. Apr, 2013 | Pubmed ID: 23250869
Estrogen receptor α (ERα) is present in about 70 % of human breast cancers and, working in conjunction with extracellular signal-regulated kinase 2 (ERK2), this nuclear hormone receptor regulates the expression of many protein-encoding genes. Given the crucial roles of miRNAs in cancer biology, we investigated the regulation of miRNAs by estradiol (E2) through ERα and ERK2, and their impact on target gene expression and phenotypic properties of breast cancer cells. We identified miRNA-encoding genes harboring overlapping ERα and ERK chromatin binding sites in ERα-positive MCF-7 cells and showed ERα and ERK2 to bind to these sites and to be required for transcriptional induction of these miRNAs by E2. Hsa-miR-196a2*, the most highly estrogen up-regulated miRNA, markedly down-regulated tumor protein p63 (TP63), a member of the p53 family. In ERα-positive and ERα-negative breast cancer cells, proliferative and invasiveness properties were suppressed by hsa-miR-196a2* expression and enhanced by hsa-miR-196a2* antagonism or TP63 target protector oligonucleotides. Hsa-miR-196a2* and TP63 were inversely correlated in breast cancer cell lines and in a large cohort of human breast tumors, implying clinical relevance. The findings reveal a tumor suppressive role of hsa-miR-196a2* through regulation of TP63 by ERα and/or ERK2 signaling. Manipulating the hsa-miR-196a2*-TP63 axis might provide a potential tumor-suppressive strategy to alleviate the aggressive behavior and poor prognosis of some ERα-positive as well as many ERα-negative breast cancers.
Molecular Systems Biology. 2013 | Pubmed ID: 23774759
The closely related transcription factors (TFs), estrogen receptors ERα and ERβ, regulate divergent gene expression programs and proliferative outcomes in breast cancer. Utilizing breast cancer cells with ERα, ERβ, or both receptors as a model system to define the basis for differing response specification by related TFs, we show that these TFs and their key coregulators, SRC3 and RIP140, generate overlapping as well as unique chromatin-binding and transcription-regulating modules. Cistrome and transcriptome analyses and the use of clustering algorithms delineated 11 clusters representing different chromatin-bound receptor and coregulator assemblies that could be functionally associated through enrichment analysis with distinct patterns of gene regulation and preferential coregulator usage, RIP140 with ERβ and SRC3 with ERα. The receptors modified each other's transcriptional effect, and ERβ countered the proliferative drive of ERα through several novel mechanisms associated with specific binding-site clusters. Our findings delineate distinct TF-coregulator assemblies that function as control nodes, specifying precise patterns of gene regulation, proliferation, and metabolism, as exemplified by two of the most important nuclear hormone receptors in human breast cancer.
FASEB Journal : Official Publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. Jul, 2013 | Pubmed ID: 23882126
Because little is known about the actions of botanical estrogens (BEs), widely consumed by menopausal women, we investigated the mechanistic and cellular activities of some major BEs. We examined the interactions of genistein, daidzein, equol, and liquiritigenin with estrogen receptors ERÎ± and ERÎ², with key coregulators (SRC3 and RIP140) and chromatin binding sites, and the regulation of gene expression and proliferation in MCF-7 breast cancer cells containing ERÎ± and/or ERÎ². Unlike the endogenous estrogen, estradiol (E2), BEs preferentially bind to ERÎ², but their ERÎ²-potency selectivity in gene stimulation (340- to 830-fold vs. E2) is enhanced at several levels (coregulator recruitment, chromatin binding); nevertheless, at high (0.1 or 1 Î¼M) concentrations, BEs also fully activate ERÎ±. Because ERÎ± drives breast cancer cell proliferation and ERÎ² dampens this, the relative levels of these two ERs in target cells and the BE dose greatly affect gene expression and proliferative response and will be crucial determinants of the potential benefits vs. risks of BEs. Our findings reveal key and novel mechanistic differences in the estrogenic activities of BEs vs. E2, with BEs displaying patterns of activity distinctly different from those seen with E2 and provide valuable information to inform future studies.-Jiang, Y., Gong, P., Madak-Erdogan, Z., Martin, T., Jeyakumar, M., Carlson, K., Khan, I., Smillie, T. J., Chittiboyina, A. G., Rotte, S. C. K., Helferich, W. G., Katzenellenbogen, J. A., Katzenellenbogen, B. S. Mechanisms enforcing the estrogen receptor Î² selectivity of botanical estrogens.
Molecular Cancer Research : MCR. May, 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24505128
Cancer cell motility and invasiveness are fundamental characteristics of the malignant phenotype and are regulated through diverse signaling networks involving kinases and transcription factors. This study establishes an estrogen receptor (ERα)/MAPK (ERK5)/cofilin (CFL1) network that specifies the degree of breast cancer cell aggressiveness through coupling of actin reorganization and hormone receptor-mediated transcription. Using dominant negative and constitutively active forms, as well as small-molecule inhibitors of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)5 and MAP-ERK kinase (MEK)5, it was revealed that hormone activation of ERα determined the subcellular localization of ERK5, which functions as a coregulator of ERα-dependent gene transcription. Notably, ERK5 acted in concert with the actin remodeling protein, CFL1, and upon hormone exposure, both localized to active nuclear transcriptional hubs as verified by immunofluorescence and proximity ligation assays. Both ERK5 and CFL1 facilitated PAF1 recruitment to the RNA Pol II complex and both were required for regulation of gene transcription. In contrast, in cells lacking ERα, ERK5 and CFL1 localized to cytoplasmic membrane regions of high actin remodeling, promoting cell motility and invasion, thereby revealing a mechanism likely contributing to the generally poorer prognosis of patients with ERα-negative breast cancer. Thus, this study uncovers the dynamic interplay of nuclear receptor-mediated transcription and actin reorganization in phenotypes of breast cancer aggressiveness.
Breast Cancer Research : BCR. 2014 | Pubmed ID: 25213081
The forkhead transcription factor FOXM1 coordinates expression of cell cycle-related genes and plays a pivotal role in tumorigenesis and cancer progression. We previously showed that FOXM1 acts downstream of 14-3-3ζ signaling, the elevation of which correlates with a more aggressive tumor phenotype. However, the role that FOXM1 might play in engendering resistance to endocrine treatments in estrogen receptor-positive (ER+) patients when tumor FOXM1 is high has not been clearly defined yet.
Nuclear Receptor Signaling. 2014 | Pubmed ID: 25363786
The estrogen receptors (ERs) ERα and ERβ mediate the actions of endogenous estrogens as well as those of botanical estrogens (BEs) present in plants. BEs are ingested in the diet and also widely consumed by postmenopausal women as dietary supplements, often as a substitute for the loss of endogenous estrogens at menopause. However, their activities and efficacies, and similarities and differences in gene expression programs with respect to endogenous estrogens such as estradiol (E2) are not fully understood. Because gene expression patterns underlie and control the broad physiological effects of estrogens, we have investigated and compared the gene networks that are regulated by different BEs and by E2. Our aim was to determine if the soy and licorice BEs control similar or different gene expression programs and to compare their gene regulations with that of E2. Gene expression was examined by RNA-Seq in human breast cancer (MCF7) cells treated with control vehicle, BE or E2. These cells contained three different complements of ERs, ERα only, ERα+ERβ, or ERβ only, reflecting the different ratios of these two receptors in different human breast cancers and in different estrogen target cells. Using principal component, hierarchical clustering, and gene ontology and interactome analyses, we found that BEs regulated many of the same genes as did E2. The genes regulated by each BE, however, were somewhat different from one another, with some genes being regulated uniquely by each compound. The overlap with E2 in regulated genes was greatest for the soy isoflavones genistein and S-equol, while the greatest difference from E2 in gene expression pattern was observed for the licorice root BE liquiritigenin. The gene expression pattern of each ligand depended greatly on the cell background of ERs present. Despite similarities in gene expression pattern with E2, the BEs were generally less stimulatory of genes promoting proliferation and were more pro-apoptotic in their gene regulations than E2. The distinctive patterns of gene regulation by the individual BEs and E2 may underlie differences in the activities of these soy and licorice-derived BEs in estrogen target cells containing different levels of the two ERs.
Journal of the American Chemical Society. Aug, 2015 | Pubmed ID: 26186415
Estrogen conjugates with a polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimer have shown remarkably selective regulation of the nongenomic actions of estrogens in target cells. In response to pH changes, however, these estrogen-dendrimer conjugates (EDCs) display a major morphological transition that alters the accessibility of the estrogen ligands that compromises the bioactivity of the EDC. A sharp break in dynamic behavior near pH 7 occurs for three different ligands on the surface of a PAMAM-G6 dendrimer: a fluorophore (tetramethylrhodamine [TMR]) and two estrogens (17α-ethynylestradiol and diphenolic acid). Collisional quenching and time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy experiments with TMR-PAMAM revealed high ligand shielding above pH 7 and low shielding below pH 7. Furthermore, when the pH was cycled from 8.5 (conditions of ligand-PAMAM conjugation) to 4.5 (e.g., endosome/lysosome) and through 6.5 (e.g., hypoxic environment) back to pH 8.5, the 17α-ethynylestradiol- and diphenolic acid-PAMAM conjugates experienced a dramatic, irreversible loss in cell stimulatory activity; dynamic NMR studies indicated that the hormonal ligands had become occluded within the more hydrophobic core of the PAMAM dendrimer. Thus, the active state of these estrogen-dendrimer conjugates appears to be metastable. This pH-dependent irreversible masking of activity is of considerable relevance to the design of drug conjugates with amine-bearing PAMAM dendrimers.
Molecular Nutrition & Food Research. Feb, 2016 | Pubmed ID: 26555669
We studied the impact of dietary supplementation with licorice root components on diet-induced obesity, fat accumulation, and hepatic steatosis in ovariectomized C57BL/6 mice as a menopause model.
The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Apr, 2016 | Pubmed ID: 26689478
Estrogens act through nuclear and extranuclear initiated pathways involving estrogen receptors (ERs) to regulate gene expression and activate protein kinases. We investigated the involvement of extracellular signal-regulated kinase2 (ERK2) and ERα in the activities of estradiol (E2), conjugated estrogens (CEs), selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs), and a Tissue-Selective Estrogen Complex (TSEC), a combination of a SERM and CE that has a blended activity. We found that CE and individual CE components were generally less effective than E2 in ERK2 recruitment to chromatin binding sites of E2-regulated genes. Likewise, CE was much less agonistic than E2 in stimulation of proliferation of ERα-positive breast cancer cells. The SERM bazedoxifene (BZA) fully suppressed proliferation stimulated by E2 or CE and reversed gene stimulation by CE or E2, as did the antiestrogen Faslodex. Thus, the balance of biological activities mediated through nuclear ERα vs. ERK2-mediated activities is different for CE vs. E2, with CE showing lower stimulation of kinase activity. Furthermore, at the BZA to CE concentrations in TSEC, BZA antagonized CE stimulation of gene expression and proliferation programs in ERα-positive breast cancer cells. The studies provide molecular underpinnings of the different ways in which SERMs and estrogens support or antagonize one another in regulating the chromatin binding of ERα and ERK2, and modulating gene and cell activities. They illuminate how the combined actions of two classes of ER ligands (SERM and CE, present in TSEC) can achieve unique modes of regulation and efficacy.