We previously showed that treating vascular endothelial cells with 3-methylcholanthrene (3MC) caused cell-cycle arrest in the Go/G1 phase; this resulted from the induction of p21 and p27 and a decreased level and activity of the cyclin-dependent kinase, Cdk2. We further investigated the molecular mechanisms that modulate cell-cycle regulatory proteins through the aryl-hydrocarbon receptor (AhR)/Ras homolog gene family, member A (RhoA) dependent epigenetic modification of histone. AhR/RhoA activation mediated by 3MC was essential for the upregulation of retinoblastoma 2 (pRb2) and histone deacetylase 1 (HDAC1), whereas their nuclear translocation was primarily modulated by RhoA activation. The combination of increased phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) activity and decreased phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) activation by 3MC led to the inactivation of the Ras-cRaf pathway, which contributed to pRb2 hypophosphorylation. Increased HDAC1/pRb2 recruitment to the E2F1 complex decreased E2F1-transactivational activity and H3/H4 deacetylation, resulting in the downregulation of cell-cycle regulatory proteins (Cdk2/4 and Cyclin D3/E). Co-immunoprecipitation and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) results showed that simvastatin prevented the 3MC-increased binding activities of E2F1 proteins in their promoter regions. Additionally, RhoA inhibitors (statins) reversed the effect of 3MC in inhibiting DNA synthesis by decreasing the nuclear translocation of pRb2/HDAC1, leading to a recovery of the levels of cell-cycle regulatory proteins. In summary, 3MC decreased cell proliferation by the epigenetic modification of histone through an AhR/RhoA-dependent mechanism that can be rescued by statins.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)