Mithramycin selectively attenuates DNA-damage-induced neuronal cell death
Aubrecht, Taryn G
Glaser, Ethan P
Polster, Brian M
Henry, Rebecca J
Faden, Alan I
Stoica, Bogdan A
JournalCell Death and Disease
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractDNA damage triggers cell death mechanisms contributing to neuronal loss and cognitive decline in neurological disorders, including traumatic brain injury (TBI), and as a side effect of chemotherapy. Mithramycin, which competitively targets chromatin-binding sites of specificity protein 1 (Sp1), was used to examine previously unexplored neuronal cell death regulatory mechanisms via rat primary neurons in vitro and after TBI in mice (males). In primary neurons exposed to DNA-damage-inducing chemotherapy drugs in vitro we showed that DNA breaks sequentially initiate DNA-damage responses, including phosphorylation of ATM, H2AX and tumor protein 53 (p53), transcriptional activation of pro-apoptotic BH3-only proteins, and mitochondrial outer membrane permeabilization (MOMP), activating caspase-dependent and caspase-independent intrinsic apoptosis. Mithramycin was highly neuroprotective in DNA-damage-dependent neuronal cell death, inhibiting chemotherapeutic-induced cell death cascades downstream of ATM and p53 phosphorylation/activation but upstream of p53-induced expression of pro-apoptotic molecules. Mithramycin reduced neuronal upregulation of BH3-only proteins and mitochondrial dysfunction, attenuated caspase-3/7 activation and caspase substrates' cleavage, and limited c-Jun activation. Chromatin immunoprecipitation indicated that mithramycin attenuates Sp1 binding to pro-apoptotic gene promoters without altering p53 binding suggesting it acts by removing cofactors required for p53 transactivation. In contrast, the DNA-damage-independent neuronal death models displayed caspase initiation in the absence of p53/BH3 activation and were not protected even when mithramycin reduced caspase activation. Interestingly, experimental TBI triggers a multiplicity of neuronal death mechanisms. Although markers of DNA-damage/p53-dependent intrinsic apoptosis are detected acutely in the injured cortex and are attenuated by mithramycin, these processes may play a reduced role in early neuronal death after TBI, as caspase-dependent mechanisms are repressed in mature neurons while other, mithramycin-resistant mechanisms are active. Our data suggest that Sp1 is required for p53-mediated transactivation of neuronal pro-apoptotic molecules and that mithramycin may attenuate neuronal cell death in conditions predominantly involving DNA-damage-induced p53-dependent intrinsic apoptosis.
Identifier to cite or link to this itemhttp://hdl.handle.net/10713/13493
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