NIH Research Festival
Metabolic reprogramming is a hallmark of cancer that facilitates changes in many adaptive biological processes. Mutations in the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle enzyme fumarate hydratase (FH) lead to fumarate accumulation and cause hereditary leiomyomatosis and renal cell cancer (HLRCC). HLRCC is a rare, inherited disease characterized by the development of non-cancerous smooth muscle tumors of the uterus and skin, and an increased risk of a highly metastatic and aggressive form of kidney cancer. Fumarate has been shown to inhibit 2-oxyglutarate-dependent dioxygenases (2OGDDs) involved in the hydroxylation of HIF1a, as well as in DNA and histone demethylation. However, the link between fumarate accumulation and changes in RNA post-transcriptional modifications has not been defined. Here, we determine the consequences of fumarate accumulation on the activity of different members of the 2OGDD family targeting RNA modifications. By evaluating multiple RNA modifications in patient-derived HLRCC cell lines, we show that mutation of FH selectively alters the activity of demethylases acting upon N6-methyladenosine (m6A), while the demethylase acting upon N1-methyladenosine (m1A) and 5-formylcytosine (f5C) in mitochondrial RNA are unaffected. The observation that metabolites modulate specific subsets of RNA-modifying enzymes offers new insights into the intersection between metabolism and the epitranscriptome.
Scientific Focus Area: RNA Biology
This page was last updated on Monday, September 25, 2023