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Articles by D. P. McDonnell
Total Records ( 7 ) for D. P. McDonnell
  L. L Grasfeder , S Gaillard , S. R Hammes , O Ilkayeva , C. B Newgard , R. B Hochberg , M. A Dwyer , C. y Chang and D. P. McDonnell

The transcriptional coactivator peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor- coactivator (PGC)-1 is involved in the coordinate induction of changes in gene expression in the liver that enable a homeostatic response to alterations in metabolic state, environmental cues, and nutrient availability. In exploring the specific pathways under PGC-1 regulation in the liver, we have made the surprising observation that this coactivator can induce the expression of CYP11A1 and CYP17A1, key rate-limiting enzymes involved in the initial steps of steroidogenesis. Both of these enzymes function to produce C19-steroids, converting cholesterol into pregnenolone, and then to dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). Estrogen-related receptor (ERR)- mediates PGC-1’s induction of CYP11A1 and binds within the first intron of the CYP11A1 gene. Both ERR- and hepatocyte nuclear factor-4 are required for PGC-1-mediated induction of CYP17A1, and specific binding sites for these receptors have been identified in the regulatory regions of this gene. The potential physiological significance of these observations was highlighted in rats where fasting induced hepatic expression of PGC-1 and CYP17A1 and was associated with an increase in hepatic levels of DHEA. These data suggest that DHEA could be playing a role as an intracellular signaling molecule involved in modulating hepatic activity in response to fasting conditions.

  D. E Frigo , A. B Sherk , B. M Wittmann , J. D Norris , Q Wang , J. D Joseph , A. P Toner , M Brown and D. P. McDonnell

Advanced prostate cancers preferentially metastasize to bone, suggesting that this tissue produces factors that provide a suitable microenvironment for prostate cancer cells. Recently, it has become clear that even in antiandrogen-resistant cancers, the androgen receptor (AR)-signaling axis is required for prostate cancer progression. Therefore, we hypothesized that AR may be involved in the regulation of pathways that are responsible for the homing of prostate cancer cells to select microenvironments. In support of this hypothesis, we have determined that chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 4 (CXCR4), the receptor for the chemokine CXCL12, is up-regulated in prostate cancer cells in response to androgens. Given that the levels of CXCL12 are elevated at sites of known prostate cancer metastases such as bone, these results suggest that androgens may influence prostate cancer metastasis. Specifically, we demonstrate that androgens increase the levels of both CXCR4 mRNA and functional protein in LNCaP prostate cancer cells. Importantly, androgens enhanced the migration of LNCaP cells toward a CXCL12 gradient, an effect that could be blocked by the specific CXCR4 antagonist AMD3100. Interestingly, CXCR4 is not directly regulated by androgens but rather is positively up-regulated by Krüppel-like factor 5 (KLF5), a transcription factor that we have shown to be an early, direct target of AR. Further, KLF5 is both required and sufficient for androgen-mediated CXCR4 expression and migration toward CXCL12. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that AR can utilize the CXCL12/CXCR4 axis through induction of KLF5 expression to promote prostate cancer progression and highlight the potential utility of CXCR4 antagonists as prostate cancer therapeutics.

  J. P Chute , J. R Ross and D. P. McDonnell

Nuclear receptors (NRs) regulate a panoply of biological processes, including the function and development of cells within the hematopoietic and immune system, such as erythrocytes, monocytes, and lymphocytes. Significantly less is known regarding the function of NRs in regulating the fate of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), the self-renewing, pluripotent cells that give rise to the entirety of the blood and immune systems throughout the lifetime of an individual. Several recent studies suggest, either directly or indirectly, a role for members of the NR family in regulating the differentiation and self-renewal of HSCs, embryonic stem cells, and induced pluripotent stem cells. Herein, we review in detail the function of specific NRs in controlling HSC and other stem cell fate and propose a framework through which these observations can be translated into therapeutic amplification of HSCs for clinical purposes.

  C. D DuSell , E. R Nelson , B. M Wittmann , J. A Fretz , D Kazmin , R. S Thomas , J. W Pike and D. P. McDonnell

Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs), such as tamoxifen (TAM), have been used extensively for the treatment and prevention of breast cancer and other pathologies associated with aberrant estrogen receptor (ER) signaling. These compounds exhibit cell-selective agonist/antagonist activities as a consequence of their ability to induce different conformational changes in ER, thereby enabling it to recruit functionally distinct transcriptional coregulators. However, the observation that SERMs can also regulate aspects of calcium signaling and apoptosis in an ER-independent manner in some systems suggests that some of the activity of drugs within this class may also arise as a consequence of their ability to interact with targets other than ER. In this study, we demonstrate that 4-hydroxy-TAM (4OHT), an active metabolite of TAM, directly binds to and modulates the transcriptional activity of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR). Of specific interest was the observation, that in the absence of ER, 4OHT can induce the expression of AHR target genes involved in estradiol metabolism, cellular proliferation, and metastasis in cellular models of breast cancer. The potential role for AHR in SERM pharmacology was further underscored by the ability of 4OHT to suppress osteoclast differentiation in vitro in part through AHR. Cumulatively, these findings provide evidence that it is necessary to reevaluate the relative roles of ER and AHR in manifesting the pharmacological actions and therapeutic efficacy of TAM and other SERMs.

  S Kobayashi , J. P Stice , D Kazmin , B. M Wittmann , E. A Kimbrel , D. P Edwards , C. Y Chang and D. P. McDonnell

Both pro- and antimitogenic activities have been ascribed to progesterone receptor (PR) agonists and antagonists in breast cancer cells; however, the transcriptional responses that underlie these paradoxical functions are not apparent. Using nontransformed, normal human mammary epithelial cells engineered to express PR and standard microarray technology, we defined 2370 genes that were significantly regulated by the PR agonist R5020. Gene ontology (GO) analysis revealed that GO terms involved in inflammation and nuclear factor-B (NF-B) signaling were among the most significantly regulated. Interestingly, on those NF-B responsive genes that were inhibited by agonist-activated PR, antagonists either 1) mimicked the actions of agonists or 2) reversed the inhibitory actions of agonists. This difference in pharmacological response could be attributed to the fact that although agonist- and antagonist-activated PR is recruited to NF-B-responsive promoters, the physical presence of PR tethered to the promoter of some genes is sufficient for transcriptional inhibition, whereas on others, an agonist-activated PR conformation is required for inhibition of NF-B signaling. Importantly, the actions of PR on the latter class of genes were reversed by an activation function-2-inhibiting, LXXLL-containing peptide. Consideration of the relative activities of these distinct antiinflammatory pathways in breast cancer may be instructive with respect to the likely therapeutic activity of PR agonists or antagonists in the treatment of breast cancer.

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