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J Biol Chem. 2009 Oct 2;284(40):27042-53. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M109.047340. Epub 2009 Aug 3.

Activation of SIRT1 by resveratrol represses transcription of the gene for the cytosolic form of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (GTP) by deacetylating hepatic nuclear factor 4alpha.

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Department of Biochemistry, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio 44106-4935, USA.


The SIRT1 activators isonicotinamide (IsoNAM), resveratrol, fisetin, and butein repressed transcription of the gene for the cytosolic form of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (GTP) (PEPCK-C). An evolutionarily conserved binding site for hepatic nuclear factor (HNF) 4alpha (-272/-252) was identified, which was required for transcriptional repression of the PEPCK-C gene promoter caused by these compounds. This site contains an overlapping AP-1 binding site and is adjacent to the C/EBP binding element (-248/-234); the latter is necessary for hepatic transcription of PEPCK-C. AP-1 competed with HNF4alpha for binding to this site and also decreased HNF4alpha stimulation of transcription from the PEPCK-C gene promoter. Chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrated that HNF4alpha and AP-1, but not C/EBPbeta, reciprocally bound to this site prior to and after treating HepG2 cells with IsoNAM. IsoNAM treatment resulted in deacetylation of HNF4alpha, which decreased its binding affinity to the PEPCK-C gene promoter. In HNF4alpha-null Chinese hamster ovary cells, IsoNAM and resveratrol failed to repress transcription from the PEPCK-C gene promoter; overexpression of HNF4alpha in Chinese hamster ovary cells re-established transcriptional inhibition. Exogenous SIRT1 expression repressed transcription, whereas knockdown of SIRT1 by RNA interference reversed this effect. IsoNAM decreased the level of mRNA for PEPCK-C but had no effect on mRNA for glucose-6-phosphatase in AML12 mouse hepatocytes. We conclude that SIRT1 activation inhibited transcription of the gene for PEPCK-C in part by deacetylation of HNF4alpha. However, SIRT1 deacetylation of other key regulatory proteins that control PEPCK-C gene transcription also likely contributed to the inhibitory effect.

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