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J Biol Chem. 2011 Nov 4;286(44):38027-34. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M111.275503. Epub 2011 Sep 9.

MondoA senses non-glucose sugars: regulation of thioredoxin-interacting protein (TXNIP) and the hexose transport curb.

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Department of Oncological Sciences and the Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112, USA.


Glucose is required for cell growth and proliferation. The MondoA·Mlx transcription factor is glucose-responsive and accumulates in the nucleus by sensing glucose 6-phosphate. One direct and glucose-induced target of MondoA·Mlx complexes is thioredoxin-interacting protein (TXNIP). TXNIP is a potent negative regulator of glucose uptake, and hence its regulation by MondoA·Mlx triggers a feedback loop that restricts glucose uptake. This feedback loop is similar to the "hexose transport curb" first described almost 30 years ago. We show here that MondoA responds to the non-glucose hexoses, allose, 3-O-methylglucose, and glucosamine by accumulating in the nucleus and activating TXNIP transcription. The metabolic inhibitor 3-bromopyruvate blocks the transcriptional response to allose and 3-O-methylglucose, indicating that their metabolism, or a parallel pathway, is required to stimulate MondoA activity. Our dissection of the hexosamine biosynthetic pathway suggests that in addition to sensing glucose 6-phosphate, MondoA can also sense glucosamine 6-phosphate. Analysis of glucose uptake in wild-type, MondoA-null, or TXNIP-null murine embryonic fibroblasts indicates a role for the MondoA-TXNIP regulatory circuit in the hexose transport curb, although other redundant pathways also contribute.

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