Transcriptional regulation of cystathionine-γ-lyase in endothelial cells by NADPH oxidase 4-dependent signaling

Rajesh K. Mistry, Thomas V A Murray, Oleksandra Prysyazhna, Daniel Martin, Joe Burgoyne, Celio Santos, Philip Eaton, Ajay M. Shah, Alison C. Brewer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)
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The gasotransmitter, hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is recognized as an important mediator of endothelial cell homeostasis and function that impacts upon vascular tone and blood pressure. Cystathionine- γ-lyase (CSE) is the predominant endothelial generator of H2S, and recent evidence suggests that its transcriptional expression is regulated by the reactive oxygen species, H2O2. However, the cellular source of H2O2 and the redox-dependent molecular signaling pathway that modulates this is not known. We aimed to investigate the role of Nox4, an endothelial generator of H2O2, in the regulation of CSE in endothelial cells. Both gain- and loss-of-function experiments in human endothelial cells in vitro demonstrated Nox4 to be a positive regulator of CSE transcription and protein expression.Wedemonstrate that this is dependent upon a heme-regulated inhibitor kinase/ eIF2α/activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) signaling module. ATF4 was further demonstrated to bind directly to cis-regulatory sequences within the first intron of CSE to activate transcription. Furthermore, CSE expression was also increased in cardiac microvascular endothelial cells, isolated from endothelial- specific Nox4 transgenic mice, compared with wild-type littermate controls. Using wire myography we demonstrate that endothelial-specific Nox4 transgenic mice exhibit a hypo-contractile phenotype in response to phenylephrine that was abolished when vessels were incubated with a CSE inhibitor, propargylglycine. We, therefore, conclude that Nox4 is a positive transcriptional regulator of CSE in endothelial cells and propose that it may in turn contribute to the regulation of vascular tone via the modulation of H2S production.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1774-1788
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number4
Early online date22 Jan 2016
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jan 2016


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