BIOL-10_Yiping He


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Rui Yang1, Wenzhe Wang2, Meichen Dong3, Kristen Roso2, Xuhui Bao2, Christopher Pirozzi2, Darell Bigner2, Hai Yan2, David Ashley2, Vasyl Zhabotynsky3, Fei Zou3, Yiping He2; 1Duke University, Durham, NC, USA. 2Duke Univ, Durham, NC, USA. 3UNC-CH, Chapel Hill, NC, USA

Myc plays a central role in tumorigenesis by orchestrating the expression of genes essential to numerous cellular processes. While it is well established that Myc functions by binding to its target genes to regulate their transcription, the distribution of the transcriptional output across human genome in Myc-amplified cancer cells, and the susceptibility of such transcriptional outputs to therapeutic interferences remain to be fully elucidated. Here, we analyze the distribution of transcriptional outputs in Myc-amplified medulloblastoma (MB) cells by profiling nascent total RNAs within a temporal context. This profiling reveals a major portion of transcriptional action in these cells was directed at the genes fundamental to cellular infrastructures, including rRNAs and particularly those in the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA). Notably, even when Myc protein was depleted by as much as 80%, the impact on transcriptional outputs across the genome was limited, with notable reduction mostly in genes of involved in ribosomal biosynthesis, genes residing in mtDNA or encoding mitochondria-localized proteins, and those encoding histones. In contrast to the limited direct impact of Myc depletion, we found that the global transcriptional outputs were highly dependent on the activity of Inosine Monophosphate Dehydrogenases (IMPDHs), rate limiting enzymes for de novo guanine nucleotide synthesis and whose expression in tumor cells was positively correlated with Myc’s expression. Blockage of IMPDHs attenuated the global transcriptional outputs with a particularly strong inhibitory effect on the aforementioned infrastructure genes, which was accompanied by the abrogation of MB cell’s proliferation in vitro and in vivo. Together, our findings reveal a real time action of Myc as a transcriptional factor in tumor cells, gain new insight into the pathogenic mechanism underlying Myc-driven tumorigenesis, and support IMPDHs as a therapeutic vulnerability in MB cells empowered by a high level of Myc oncoprotein.

Duration: 04:51

Posted: Sunday, June 6, 2021

Video tags: 2021 SNO Pediatric Meeting