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Arul J. Duraisamy, Manish Mishra, Renu A. Kowluru; Crosstalk Between Histone and DNA Methylation in Regulation of Retinal Matrix Metalloproteinase-9 in Diabetes. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2017;58(14):6440-6448. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.17-22706.
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Diabetes activates matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), and MMP-9 via damaging retinal mitochondria, activates capillary cell apoptosis. MMP-9 promoter has binding sites for many transcription factors, and in diabetes its promoter undergoes epigenetic modifications, including histone modifications and DNA methylation. Enhancer of Zeste homolog 2 (Ezh2), which catalyzes dimethylation/trimethylation of histone 3 lysine 27 (H3K27me2 and me3), is also associated with DNA methylation. Our aim was to investigate link(s) between histone and DNA modifications in the regulation of MMP-9.
Using human retinal endothelial cells, and also retinal microvessels from diabetic rats, effect of hyperglycemia on H3K27me3, and recruitment of Ezh2 at the MMP-9 promoter were quantified by chromatin-immunoprecipitation technique. Role of H3K27 trimethylation in regulating DNA methylation-transcription of MMP-9 was determined by regulating Ezh2 by its specific siRNA and also a pharmacologic inhibitor.
Hyperglycemia elevated H3K27me3 levels and the recruitment of Ezh2 at the MMP-9 promoter, and increased the enzyme activity of Ezh2. Inhibition of Ezh2 attenuated recruitment of both DNA methylating (Dnmt1) and hydroxymethylating (Tet2) enzymes and 5 hydroxymethyl cytosine at the same region of the MMP-9 promoter, and prevented increase in MMP-9 transcription and mitochondrial damage.
Activation of Ezh2 in diabetes, via trimethylation of H3K27, facilitates recruitment of the enzymes responsible for regulation of DNA methylation of the MMP-9 promoter, resulting in its transcriptional activation. Thus, a close crosstalk between H3K27 trimethylation and DNA methylation in diabetes plays a critical role in the maintenance of cellular epigenetic integrity of MMP-9.
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