Selective Ah receptor modulators attenuate NPC1L1-mediated cholesterol uptake through repression of SREBP-2 transcriptional activity

Gulsum E. Muku, Ann Kusnadi, Guray Kuzu, Rachel Tanos, Iain Alexander Murray, Krishne Gowda, Shantu Amin, Gary H. Perdew

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The ability of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) to alter hepatic expression of cholesterol synthesis genes in a DRE-independent manner in mice and humans has been reported. We have examined the influence of functionally distinct classes of AHR ligands on the levels of Niemann–Pick C1-like intracellular cholesterol transporter (NPC1L1) and enzymes involved in the cholesterol synthesis pathway. NPC1L1 is known to mediate the intestinal absorption of dietary cholesterol and is clinically targeted. AHR ligands were capable of attenuating cholesterol uptake through repression of NPC1L1 expression. Through mutagenesis experiments targeting the two DRE sequences present in the promoter region of the NPC1L1 gene, we provide evidence that the repression does not require functional DRE sequences; while knockdown experiments demonstrated that this regulation is dependent on AHR and sterol-regulatory element-binding protein-2 (SREBP-2). Furthermore, upon ligand activation of AHR, the human intestinal Caco-2 cell line revealed coordinate repression of both mRNA and protein levels for a number of the cholesterol biosynthetic enzymes. Transcription of NPC1L1 and genes of the cholesterol synthesis pathway is predominantly regulated by SREBP-2, especially after treatment with a statin. Immunoblot analyses revealed a significant decrease in transcriptionally active SREBP-2 levels upon ligand treatment, whereas the precursor form of SREBP-2 was modestly increased by AHR activation. Mechanistic insights indicate that AHR induces proteolytic degradation of mature SREBP-2 in a calcium-dependent manner, which correlates with the AHR ligand-mediated upregulation of the transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 6 (TRPV6) gene encoding for a membrane calcium channel. These observations emphasize a role for AHR in the systemic homeostatic regulation of cholesterol synthesis and absorption, indicating the potential use of this receptor as a target for the treatment of hyperlipidosis-associated metabolic diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalLaboratory Investigation
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019

Fingerprint

Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Protein 2
Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptors
Cholesterol
Ligands
Genes
Transient Receptor Potential Channels
Dietary Cholesterol
Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors
Caco-2 Cells
Metabolic Diseases
Intestinal Absorption
Enzymes
Calcium Channels
Ion Channels
Genetic Promoter Regions
Mutagenesis
Up-Regulation
Calcium
Cell Line

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

Cite this

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title = "Selective Ah receptor modulators attenuate NPC1L1-mediated cholesterol uptake through repression of SREBP-2 transcriptional activity",
abstract = "The ability of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) to alter hepatic expression of cholesterol synthesis genes in a DRE-independent manner in mice and humans has been reported. We have examined the influence of functionally distinct classes of AHR ligands on the levels of Niemann–Pick C1-like intracellular cholesterol transporter (NPC1L1) and enzymes involved in the cholesterol synthesis pathway. NPC1L1 is known to mediate the intestinal absorption of dietary cholesterol and is clinically targeted. AHR ligands were capable of attenuating cholesterol uptake through repression of NPC1L1 expression. Through mutagenesis experiments targeting the two DRE sequences present in the promoter region of the NPC1L1 gene, we provide evidence that the repression does not require functional DRE sequences; while knockdown experiments demonstrated that this regulation is dependent on AHR and sterol-regulatory element-binding protein-2 (SREBP-2). Furthermore, upon ligand activation of AHR, the human intestinal Caco-2 cell line revealed coordinate repression of both mRNA and protein levels for a number of the cholesterol biosynthetic enzymes. Transcription of NPC1L1 and genes of the cholesterol synthesis pathway is predominantly regulated by SREBP-2, especially after treatment with a statin. Immunoblot analyses revealed a significant decrease in transcriptionally active SREBP-2 levels upon ligand treatment, whereas the precursor form of SREBP-2 was modestly increased by AHR activation. Mechanistic insights indicate that AHR induces proteolytic degradation of mature SREBP-2 in a calcium-dependent manner, which correlates with the AHR ligand-mediated upregulation of the transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 6 (TRPV6) gene encoding for a membrane calcium channel. These observations emphasize a role for AHR in the systemic homeostatic regulation of cholesterol synthesis and absorption, indicating the potential use of this receptor as a target for the treatment of hyperlipidosis-associated metabolic diseases.",
author = "Muku, {Gulsum E.} and Ann Kusnadi and Guray Kuzu and Rachel Tanos and Murray, {Iain Alexander} and Krishne Gowda and Shantu Amin and Perdew, {Gary H.}",
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T1 - Selective Ah receptor modulators attenuate NPC1L1-mediated cholesterol uptake through repression of SREBP-2 transcriptional activity

AU - Muku, Gulsum E.

AU - Kusnadi, Ann

AU - Kuzu, Guray

AU - Tanos, Rachel

AU - Murray, Iain Alexander

AU - Gowda, Krishne

AU - Amin, Shantu

AU - Perdew, Gary H.

PY - 2019/1/1

Y1 - 2019/1/1

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AB - The ability of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) to alter hepatic expression of cholesterol synthesis genes in a DRE-independent manner in mice and humans has been reported. We have examined the influence of functionally distinct classes of AHR ligands on the levels of Niemann–Pick C1-like intracellular cholesterol transporter (NPC1L1) and enzymes involved in the cholesterol synthesis pathway. NPC1L1 is known to mediate the intestinal absorption of dietary cholesterol and is clinically targeted. AHR ligands were capable of attenuating cholesterol uptake through repression of NPC1L1 expression. Through mutagenesis experiments targeting the two DRE sequences present in the promoter region of the NPC1L1 gene, we provide evidence that the repression does not require functional DRE sequences; while knockdown experiments demonstrated that this regulation is dependent on AHR and sterol-regulatory element-binding protein-2 (SREBP-2). Furthermore, upon ligand activation of AHR, the human intestinal Caco-2 cell line revealed coordinate repression of both mRNA and protein levels for a number of the cholesterol biosynthetic enzymes. Transcription of NPC1L1 and genes of the cholesterol synthesis pathway is predominantly regulated by SREBP-2, especially after treatment with a statin. Immunoblot analyses revealed a significant decrease in transcriptionally active SREBP-2 levels upon ligand treatment, whereas the precursor form of SREBP-2 was modestly increased by AHR activation. Mechanistic insights indicate that AHR induces proteolytic degradation of mature SREBP-2 in a calcium-dependent manner, which correlates with the AHR ligand-mediated upregulation of the transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 6 (TRPV6) gene encoding for a membrane calcium channel. These observations emphasize a role for AHR in the systemic homeostatic regulation of cholesterol synthesis and absorption, indicating the potential use of this receptor as a target for the treatment of hyperlipidosis-associated metabolic diseases.

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