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Circ Res. 2012 Feb 3;110(3):394-405. doi: 10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.111.253658. Epub 2011 Dec 29.

High-mobility group A1 protein: a new coregulator of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ-mediated transrepression in the vasculature.

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Center for Cardiovascular Research, Institute of Pharmacology, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany.



The nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ) is an important regulator of gene transcription in vascular cells and mediates the vascular protection observed with antidiabetic glitazones.


To determine the molecular mechanism of ligand-dependent transrepression in vascular smooth muscle cells and their impact on the vascular protective actions of PPARγ.


Here, we report a molecular pathway in vascular smooth muscle cells by which ligand-activated PPARγ represses transcriptional activation of the matrix-degrading matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) gene, a crucial mediator of vascular injury. PPARγ-mediated transrepression of the MMP-9 gene was dependent on the presence of the high-mobility group A1 (HMGA1) protein, a gene highly expressed in vascular smooth muscle cells, newly identified by oligonucleotide array expression analysis. Transrepression of MMP-9 by PPARγ and regulation by HMGA1 required PPARγ SUMOylation at K367. This process was associated with formation of a complex between PPARγ, HMGA1, and the SUMO E2 ligase Ubc9 (ubiquitin-like protein SUMO-1 conjugating enzyme). After PPARγ ligand stimulation, HMGA1 and PPARγ were recruited to the MMP-9 promoter, which facilitated binding of SMRT (silencing mediator of retinoic acid and thyroid hormone receptor), a nuclear corepressor involved in transrepression. The relevance of HMGA1 for vascular PPARγ signaling was underlined by the complete absence of vascular protection through a PPARγ ligand in HMGA1(-/-) mice after arterial wire injury.


The present data suggest that ligand-dependent formation of HMGA1-Ubc9-PPARγ complexes facilitates PPARγ SUMOylation, which results in the prevention of SMRT corepressor clearance and induction of MMP-9 transrepression. These data provide new information on PPARγ-dependent vascular transcriptional regulation and help us to understand the molecular consequences of therapeutic interventions with PPARγ ligands in the vasculature.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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