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STAT1 Regulates Human Glutaminase 1 Promoter Activity through Multiple Binding Sites in HIV-1 Infected Macrophages  [PDF]
Lixia Zhao, Yunlong Huang, Jialin Zheng
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0076581
Abstract: Mononuclear phagocytes (MP, macrophages and microglia), the main targets of HIV-1 infection in the brain, play a pathogenic role in HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) through the production and release of various soluble neurotoxic factors including glutamate. We have previously reported that glutaminase (GLS), the glutamate-generating enzyme, is upregulated in HIV-1 infected MP and in the brain tissues of HIV dementia individuals, and that HIV-1 or interferon-α (IFN-α) regulates human glutaminase 1 (GLS1) promoter through signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (STAT1) phosphorylation in macrophages. However, there are multiple putative STAT1 binding sites in human GLS1 promoter, the exact molecular mechanism of how HIV-1 or IFN-α regulates human GLS1 promoter remains unclear. To further study the function of the putative STAT1 binding sites, we mutated the sequence of each binding site to ACTAGTCTC and found that six mutants (mut 1,3,4,5,7,8) had significantly higher promoter activity and two mutants (mut 2 and mut 6) completely lost the promoter activity compared with the wild type. To determine whether sites 2 and 6 could interfere with other inhibitory sites, particularly the nearby inhibitory sites 3 and 5, we made double mutants dmut 2/3 and dmut 5/6, and found that both the double mutants had significantly higher activity than the wild type, indicating that sites 3 and 5 are critical inhibitory elements, while sites 2 and 6 are excitatory elements. ChIP assay verified that STAT1 could bind with sites 2/3 and 5/6 within human GLS1 promoter in IFN-α stimulated or HIV-1-infected monocyte-derived macrophages. Interestingly, we found that rat Gls1 promoter was regulated through a similar way as human GLS1 promoter. Together, our data identified critical elements that regulate GLS1 promoter activity.
Stat1 Phosphorylation Determines Ras Oncogenicity by Regulating p27Kip1  [PDF]
Shuo Wang, Jennifer F. Raven, Joan E. Durbin, Antonis E. Koromilas
PLOS ONE , 2008, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0003476
Abstract: Inactivation of p27Kip1 is implicated in tumorigenesis and has both prognostic and treatment-predictive values for many types of human cancer. The transcription factor Stat1 is essential for innate immunity and tumor immunosurveillance through its ability to act downstream of interferons. Herein, we demonstrate that Stat1 functions as a suppressor of Ras transformation independently of an interferon response. Inhibition of Ras transformation and tumorigenesis requires the phosphorylation of Stat1 at tyrosine 701 but is independent of Stat1 phosphorylation at serine 727. Stat1 induces p27Kip1 expression in Ras transformed cells at the transcriptional level through mechanisms that depend on Stat1 phosphorylation at tyrosine 701 and activation of Stat3. The tumor suppressor properties of Stat1 in Ras transformation are reversed by the inactivation of p27Kip1. Our work reveals a novel functional link between Stat1 and p27Kip1, which act in coordination to suppress the oncogenic properties of activated Ras. It also supports the notion that evaluation of Stat1 phosphorylation in human tumors may prove a reliable prognostic factor for patient outcome and a predictor of treatment response to anticancer therapies aimed at activating Stat1 and its downstream effectors.
Toxoplasma gondii Clonal Strains All Inhibit STAT1 Transcriptional Activity but Polymorphic Effectors Differentially Modulate IFNγ Induced Gene Expression and STAT1 Phosphorylation  [PDF]
Emily E. Rosowski, Jeroen P. J. Saeij
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0051448
Abstract: Host defense against the parasite Toxoplasma gondii requires the cytokine interferon-gamma (IFNγ). However, Toxoplasma inhibits the host cell transcriptional response to IFNγ, which is thought to allow the parasite to establish a chronic infection. It is not known whether all strains of Toxoplasma block IFNγ-responsive transcription equally and whether this inhibition occurs solely through the modulation of STAT1 activity or whether other transcription factors are involved. We find that strains from three North American/European clonal lineages of Toxoplasma, types I, II, and III, can differentially modulate specific aspects of IFNγ signaling through the polymorphic effector proteins ROP16 and GRA15. STAT1 tyrosine phosphorylation is activated in the absence of IFNγ by the Toxoplasma kinase ROP16, but this ROP16-activated STAT1 is not transcriptionally active. Many genes induced by STAT1 can also be controlled by other transcription factors and therefore using these genes as specific readouts to determine Toxoplasma inhibition of STAT1 activity might be inappropriate. Indeed, GRA15 and ROP16 modulate the expression of subsets of IFNγ responsive genes through activation of the NF-κB/IRF1 and STAT3/6 transcription factors, respectively. However, using a stable STAT1-specific reporter cell line we show that strains from the type I, II, and III clonal lineages equally inhibit STAT1 transcriptional activity. Furthermore, all three of the clonal lineages significantly inhibit global IFNγ induced gene expression.
Induction of STAT1 Phosphorylation at Serine 727 and Expression of Proinflammatory Cytokines by Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus  [PDF]
Ying Yu, Rong Wang, Yuchen Nan, Linsheng Zhang, Yanjin Zhang
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0061967
Abstract: Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is a viral pathogen that causes acute respiratory illnesses in young pigs. Since 1987, PRRSV has contributed substantial economic losses to the swine industry. Elevation of proinflammatory cytokines in PRRSV-infected pigs is thought to contribute to PRRSV pathogenesis. In this study, PRRSV VR-2385, a Type 2 strain with moderate virulence, was found to induce phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (STAT1) at serine 727 (pSTAT1-S727) in MARC-145 cells. No phosphorylated STAT1 at tyrosine 701 was detected, which indicates that the pSTAT1-S727 elevation was interferon-independent. The PRRSV-induced pSTAT1-S727, however, was dose-dependent and its levels increased with infection time. IngelVac PRRS MLV strain had a minimal effect on pSTAT1-S727. Compared to MLV-infected cells, VR-2385 infection caused significantly higher level of expression of proinflammatory cytokines, including interleukin 1 beta (IL-1beta) and IL-8. The VR-2385-induced pSTAT1-S727 and cytokine expression were reduced after SB203580, an inhibitor of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), or methylthioadenosine (MTA), a methyl transferase inhibitor, was added to the cells. The SB203580 and MTA-mediated inhibition suggested that the virus-induced pSTAT1-S727 was dependent on p38 MAPK pathway. In primary porcine alveolar macrophages (PAMs), VR-2385 also induced pSTAT1-S727 and expression of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, including IL-1beta, IL-8, chemokine ligand 2 (CCL2) and chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 10 (CXCL10). Similarly, SB203580 treatment of PAM cells blocked the elevation of pSTAT1-S727 and cytokine expression. Overexpression of individual viral proteins showed that non-structural protein 12 (nsp12) was able to induce elevation of pSTAT1-S727 and the expression of IL-1β and IL-8. These results indicated that PRRSV VR-2385 induces pSTAT1-S727 and the expression of proinflammatory cytokines, which contributes to the insight of PRRSV pathogenesis.
Toxoplasma gondii Triggers Phosphorylation and Nuclear Translocation of Dendritic Cell STAT1 while Simultaneously Blocking IFNγ-Induced STAT1 Transcriptional Activity  [PDF]
Anne G. Schneider, Delbert S. Abi Abdallah, Barbara A. Butcher, Eric Y. Denkers
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0060215
Abstract: The protozoan Toxoplasma gondii actively modulates cytokine-induced JAK/STAT signaling pathways to facilitate survival within the host, including blocking IFNγ-mediated STAT1-dependent proinflammatory gene expression. We sought to further characterize inhibition of STAT1 signaling in infected murine dendritic cells (DC) because this cell type has not previously been examined, yet is known to serve as an early target of in vivo infection. Unexpectedly, we discovered that T. gondii infection alone induced sustained STAT1 phosphorylation and nuclear translocation in DC in a parasite strain-independent manner. Maintenance of STAT1 phosphorylation required active invasion but intracellular parasite replication was dispensable. The parasite rhoptry protein ROP16, recently shown to mediate STAT3 and STAT6 phosphorylation, was not required for STAT1 phosphorylation. In combination with IFNγ, T. gondii induced synergistic STAT1 phosphorylation and binding of aberrant STAT1-containing complexes to IFNγ consensus sequence oligonucleotides. Despite these findings, parasite infection blocked STAT1 binding to the native promoters of the IFNγ-inducible genes Irf-1 and Lrg47, along with subsequent gene expression. These results reinforce the importance of parasite-mediated blockade of IFNγ responses in dendritic cells, while simultaneously showing that T. gondii alone induces STAT1 phosphorylation.
Deficient Phosphorylation of Stat1 in Leukocytes Identifies Neutralizing Antibodies in Multiple Sclerosis Patients Treated with Interferon-Beta  [PDF]
Sonia Gavasso, Ellen Faergestad Mosleth, Tove Mar?y, Katarina J?rgensen, Hanne-Linda Nakkestad, Bj?rn-Tore Gjertsen, Kjell-Morten Myhr, Christian Vedeler
PLOS ONE , 2014, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0088632
Abstract: Background Anti interferon-beta (IFN-β) neutralizing antibodies (NAb) affect efficacy of treatment of multiple sclerosis patients, but exactly when the detrimental effects of NAbs offset therapeutic efficacy is debated. Quantification of intracellular pathway-specific phosphorylation by phospho-specific flow cytometry (phosphoflow) is a promising tool for evaluation of these effects in primary immune cells from treated patients at the single-cell level. Method Samples for phosphoflow and gene expression changes were collected before administration of IFN-β and at four, six, and eight hours thereafter. Patients were NAb negative (n = 3) or were NAb positive with low/medium (n = 1) or high (n = 2) NAb titers. Levels of phosphorylation of six Stat transcription factors (pStat) in seven cell subtypes and expression levels of 71 pathway-specific genes in whole blood were measured. The data was subjected to principal component analysis (PCA), fifty-fifty MANOVA, ANOVA, and partial least square regression (PLSR). Results PCA of pStat levels clustered patients according to NAb class independently of time. PCA of gene expression data clustered patients according to NAb class but was affected by time and treatment. In the fifty-fifty MANOVA, NAb class was significant for both pStat levels and gene expression data. The ANOVA identified pStat1 protein in several cell subtypes as significantly affected by NAb class. The best fitting model for NAb prediction based on PLSR included pStat1 in monocytes, T cells, or lymphocytes and pStat3 in monocytes (r = 0.97). Gene expression data were slightly less predictive of NAb titers. Conclusion Based on this proof of concept study, we hypothesize that NAb effects can be monitored by evaluation of a single biomarker, pStat1, in either monocytes or T cells by phosphoflow directly after IFN-β administration. The method will significantly reduce cost relative to labor intensive in vitro methods and offers a patient-specific approach to NAb evaluation.
Proximal genomic localization of STAT1 binding and regulated transcriptional activity
Samuel Wormald, Douglas J Hilton, Gordon K Smyth, Terence P Speed
BMC Genomics , 2006, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-7-254
Abstract: In response to IFN-γ, STAT1 bound proximally to regions of the genome that exhibit regulated transcriptional activity. This finding was consistent between different tiling microarray platforms, and between different measures of transcriptional activity, including differential binding of RNA polymerase II, and differential mRNA transcription. Re-analysis of tiling microarray data from a recent study of IFN-γ-induced STAT1 ChIP-chip and mRNA expression revealed that STAT1 binding is tightly associated with localized mRNA transcription in response to IFN-γ. Close relationships were also apparent between STAT1 binding, STAT2 binding, and mRNA transcription in response to IFN-α. Furthermore, we found that sites of STAT1 binding within the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) region are precisely correlated with sites of either enhanced or diminished binding by the RNA polymerase II complex.Together, our results indicate that STAT1 binds proximally to regions of the genome that exhibit regulated transcriptional activity. This finding establishes a generalized basis for the positioning of STAT1 binding sites within the genome, and supports a role for STAT1 in the direct recruitment of the RNA polymerase II complex to the promoters of IFN-γ-responsive genes.Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) is a potent pro-inflammatory cytokine that regulates a spectrum of biological processes, and is produced primarily in response to infection [1]. IFN-γ signal transduction begins at the cell surface with the formation of a heteromeric protein complex that includes IFN-γ, IFN-γ receptor-1, and IFN-γ receptor-2 [1]. Associated with the IFN-γ receptors are members of the Janus kinase (JAK) family of tyrosine kinases, which become activated upon formation of the IFN-γ receptor complex, and in turn phosphorylate the signal transducer and activator of transcription-1 (STAT1) transcription factor [2-4]. Upon its phosphorylation, STAT1 homo-dimerizes, and is transported into the nucleus where it binds to
Two glutamic acid residues in the DNA-binding domain are engaged in the release of STAT1 dimers from DNA  [cached]
Koch Verena,Staab Julia,Ruppert Volker,Meyer Thomas
BMC Cell Biology , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2121-13-22
Abstract: Background In interferon-γ-stimulated cells, the dimeric transcription factor STAT1 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 1) recognizes semi-palindromic motifs in the promoter regions of cytokine-driven target genes termed GAS (gamma-activated sites). However, the molecular steps that facilitate GAS binding and the subsequent liberation of STAT1 homodimers from these promoter elements are not well understood. Results Using a mutational approach, we identified two critical glutamyl residues within the DNA-binding domain adjacent to the phosphodiester backbone of DNA which efficiently release phospho-STAT1 from DNA. The release of STAT1 dimers from DNA enhances transcriptional activity on both interferon-driven reporter and endogenous target genes. A substitution of either of the two glutamic acid residues broadens the repertoire of putative binding sites on DNA and enhances binding affinity to GAS sites. However, despite elevated levels of tyrosine phosphorylation and a prolonged nuclear accumulation period, the STAT1 DNA-binding mutants show a significantly reduced transcriptional activity upon stimulation of cells with interferon-γ. This reduced transcriptional response may be explained by the deposition of oligomerized STAT1 molecules outside GAS sites. Conclusions Thus, two negatively charged amino acid residues in the DNA-binding domain are engaged in the liberation of STAT1 from DNA, resulting in a high dissociation rate from non-GAS sites as a key feature of STAT1 signal transduction, which positively regulates cytokine-dependent gene expression probably by preventing retention at transcriptionally inert sites.
Novel STAT1 Alleles in Otherwise Healthy Patients with Mycobacterial Disease  [PDF]
Ariane Chapgier equal contributor,Stéphanie Boisson-Dupuis equal contributor,Emmanuelle Jouanguy,Guillaume Vogt,Jacqueline Feinberg,Ada Prochnicka-Chalufour,Armanda Casrouge,Kun Yang,Claire Soudais,Claire Fieschi,Orchidée Filipe Santos,Jacinta Bustamante,Capucine Picard,Ludovic de Beaucoudrey,Jean-Fran?ois Emile,Peter D Arkwright,Robert D Schreiber,Claudia Rolinck-Werninghaus,Angela R?sen-Wolff,Klaus Magdorf,Joachim Roesler,Jean-Laurent Casanova
PLOS Genetics , 2006, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.0020131
Abstract: The transcription factor signal transducer and activator of transcription-1 (STAT1) plays a key role in immunity against mycobacterial and viral infections. Here, we characterize three human STAT1 germline alleles from otherwise healthy patients with mycobacterial disease. The previously reported L706S, like the novel Q463H and E320Q alleles, are intrinsically deleterious for both interferon gamma (IFNG)–induced gamma-activating factor–mediated immunity and interferon alpha (IFNA)–induced interferon-stimulated genes factor 3–mediated immunity, as shown in STAT1-deficient cells transfected with the corresponding alleles. Their phenotypic effects are however mediated by different molecular mechanisms, L706S affecting STAT1 phosphorylation and Q463H and E320Q affecting STAT1 DNA-binding activity. Heterozygous patients display specifically impaired IFNG-induced gamma-activating factor–mediated immunity, resulting in susceptibility to mycobacteria. Indeed, IFNA-induced interferon-stimulated genes factor 3–mediated immunity is not affected, and these patients are not particularly susceptible to viral disease, unlike patients homozygous for other, equally deleterious STAT1 mutations recessive for both phenotypes. The three STAT1 alleles are therefore dominant for IFNG-mediated antimycobacterial immunity but recessive for IFNA-mediated antiviral immunity at the cellular and clinical levels. These STAT1 alleles define two forms of dominant STAT1 deficiency, depending on whether the mutations impair STAT1 phosphorylation or DNA binding.
A time- and dose-dependent STAT1 expression system
Nicole R Leitner, Birgit Strobl, Marion Bokor, Ronald Painz, Thomas Kolbe, Thomas Rülicke, Mathias Müller, Marina Karaghiosoff
BMC Biotechnology , 2006, DOI: 10.1186/1472-6750-6-48
Abstract: The functionality of the dimerizer-induced STAT1 system is demonstrated in vitro in mouse embryonic fibroblasts and embryonic stem cells. We show that this two-vector based system is highly inducible and does not show any STAT1 expression in the absence of the inducer. Reconstitution of STAT1 deficient cells with inducible STAT1 restores IFNγ-mediated gene induction, antiviral responses and STAT1 activation remains dependent on cytokine stimulation. STAT1 expression is induced rapidly upon addition of dimerizer and expression levels can be regulated in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore we show that in transgenic mice STAT1 can be induced upon stimulation with the dimerizer, although only at low levels.These results prove that the dimerizer-induced system is a powerful tool for STAT1 analysis in vitro and provide evidence that the system is suitable for the use in transgenic mice. To our knowledge this is the first report for inducible STAT1 expression in a time- and dose-dependent manner.The JAK-STAT pathway is known to play a pivotal role in a variety of different cytokine cascades. JAKs (Janus kinases) are associated with intracellular domains of receptors and become phosphorylated after ligand binding and aggregation of respective receptor chains. Activated JAKs phosphorylate tyrosine residues of the receptor, thereby providing docking sites for STATs (signal transducers and activators of transcription). STATs are in turn phosphorylated on tyrosine and/or serine residues, form homo- and/or heterodimers, translocate to the nucleus and activate transcription of stimulus-dependent genes [1-3]. Seven mammalian members of the STAT family are known (STAT1, 2, 3, 4, 5a, 5b, and 6) and they all share common features and structure. They have an aminoterminal DNA-binding domain, a carboxyterminal transactivation domain and SH2 domains for interaction with tyrosine phosphorylation sites [4,5]. STAT1 knockout mice show impaired response to interferon (IFN) type I and II l
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