Browsing Department of Biochemistry by Author "Africander, Donita"
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- ItemAbrogation of glucocorticoid receptor dimerization correlates with dissociated glucocorticoid behavior of compound A(HighWire Press, 2010-03) Robertson, Steven; Allie-Reid, Fatima; Vanden Berghe, Wim; Visser, Koch; Binder, Anke; Africander, Donita; Vismer, Michael; De Bosscher, Karolien; Hapgood, Janet; Haegeman, Guy; Louw, Ann; A-7620-2012Compound A (CpdA), a dissociated glucocorticoid receptor modulator, decreases corticosteroid-binding globulin (CBG), adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), and luteneinizing hormone levels in rats. Whether this is due to transcriptional regulation by CpdA is not known. Using promoter reporter assays we show that CpdA, like dexamethasone (Dex), directly transrepresses these genes. Results using a rat Cbg proximal-promoter reporter construct in BWTG3 and HepG2 cell lines support a glucocorticoid receptor (GR)-dependent transrepression mechanism for CpdA. However, CpdA, unlike Dex, does not result in transactivation via glucocorticoid-responsive elements within a promoter reporter construct even when GR is co-transfected. The inability of CpdA to result in transactivation via glucocorticoid- responsive elements is confirmed on the endogenous tyrosine aminotransferase gene, whereas transrepression ability is confirmed on the endogenous CBG gene. Consistent with a role for CpdA in modulating GR activity, whole cell binding assays revealed that CpdA binds reversibly to the GR, but with lower affinity than Dex, and influences association of [3H]Dex, but has no effect on dissociation. In addition, like Dex, CpdA causes nuclear translocation of the GR, albeit to a lesser degree. Several lines of evidence, including fluorescence resonance energy transfer, co-immunoprecipitation, and nuclear immunofluorescence studies of nuclear localization- deficient GR show that CpdA, unlike Dex, does not elicit ligand-induced GR dimerization. Comparison of the behavior of CpdA in the presence of wild type GR to that of Dex with a dimerization-deficient GR mutant (GRdim) strongly supports the conclusion that loss of dimerization is responsible for the dissociated behavior of CpdA.
- ItemFourth-generation progestins inhibit 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 2 and modulate the biosynthesis of endogenous steroids(Public Library of Science, 2016-05) Louw-du Toit, Renate; Perkins, Meghan S.; Snoep, Jacky L.; Storbeck, Karl-Heinz; Africander, DonitaProgestins used in contraception and hormone replacement therapy are synthetic compounds designed to mimic the actions of the natural hormone progesterone and are classed into four consecutive generations. The biological actions of progestins are primarily determined by their interactions with steroid receptors, and factors such as metabolism, pharmacokinetics, bioavailability and the regulation of endogenous steroid hormone biosynthesis are often overlooked. Although some studies have investigated the effects of select progestins on a few steroidogenic enzymes, studies comparing the effects of progestins from different generations are lacking. This study therefore explored the putative modulatory effects of progestins on de novo steroid synthesis in the adrenal by comparing the effects of select progestins from the respective generations, on endogenous steroid hormone production by the H295R human adrenocortical carcinoma cell line. Ultra-performance liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry analysis showed that the fourth-generation progestins, nestorone (NES), nomegestrol acetate (NoMAC) and drospirenone (DRSP), unlike the progestins selected from the first three generations, modulate the biosynthesis of several endogenous steroids. Subsequent assays performed in COS-1 cells expressing human 3βHSD2, suggest that these progestins modulate the biosynthesis of steroid hormones by inhibiting the activity of 3βHSD2. The Ki values determined for the inhibition of human 3βHSD2 by NES (9.5 ± 0.96 nM), NoMAC (29 ± 7.1 nM) and DRSP (232 ± 38 nM) were within the reported concentration ranges for the contraceptive use of these progestins in vivo. Taken together, our results suggest that newer, fourth-generation progestins may exert both positive and negative physiological effects via the modulation of endogenous steroid hormone biosynthesis.
- ItemThe injectable-only contraceptive medroxyprogesterone acetate, unlike norethisterone acetate and progesterone, regulates inflammatory genes in endocervical cells via the glucocorticoid receptor(PLoS, 2014-05-19) Govender, Yashini; Avenant, Chanel; Verhoog, Nicolette J. D.; Ray, Roslyn M.; Grantham, Nicholas J.; Africander, Donita; Hapgood, Janet P.Clinical studies suggest that the injectable contraceptive medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) increases susceptibility to infections such as HIV-1, unlike the injectable contraceptive norethisterone enanthate (NET-EN). We investigated the differential effects, molecular mechanism of action and steroid receptor involvement in gene expression by MPA as compared to NET and progesterone (P4) in the End1/E6E7 cell line model for the endocervical epithelium, a key point of entry for pathogens in the female genital mucosa. MPA, unlike NET-acetate (NET-A) and P4, increases mRNA expression of the anti-inflammatory GILZ and IκBα genes. Similarly, MPA unlike NET-A, decreases mRNA expression of the pro-inflammatory IL-6, IL-8 and RANTES genes, and IL-6 and IL-8 protein levels. The predominant steroid receptor expressed in the End1/E6E7 and primary endocervical epithelial cells is the glucocorticoid receptor (GR), and GR knockdown experiments show that the anti-inflammatory effects of MPA are mediated by the GR. Chromatin-immunoprecipitation results suggest that MPA, unlike NET-A and P4, represses pro-inflammatory cytokine gene expression in cervical epithelial cells via a mechanism involving recruitment of the GR to cytokine gene promoters, like the GR agonist dexamethasone. This is at least in part consistent with direct effects on transcription, without a requirement for new protein synthesis. Dose response analysis shows that MPA has a potency of ∼24 nM for transactivation of the anti-inflammatory GILZ gene and ∼4–20 nM for repression of the pro-inflammatory genes, suggesting that these effects are likely to be relevant at injectable contraceptive doses of MPA. These findings suggest that in the context of the genital mucosa, these GR-mediated glucocorticoid-like effects of MPA in cervical epithelial cells are likely to play a critical role in discriminating between the effects on inflammation caused by different progestins and P4 and hence susceptibility to genital infections, given the predominant expression of the GR in primary endocervical epithelial cells.
- ItemNot all progestins are the same : implications for usage(Elsevier, 2004-11) Hapgood, Janet P.; Koubovec, Dominique; Louw, Ann; Africander, DonitaRecent clinical evidence showing unexpected side-effects of progestins used in contraception and hormone replacement therapy has highlighted the importance of choice of synthetic progestin. The molecularmechanisms of action of the relatively nonspecific and most widely used synthetic progestins, medroxyprogesterone acetate and norethisterone, are discussed in the context of this recent clinical evidence. Future directions involving a more mechanism-based approach for improved therapeutics, with greater specificity and fewer side-effects, are discussed.