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Effect of hexavalent chromium on histone biotinylation in human bronchial epithelial cells.

Toxicology letters (2014-05-27)
Bo Xia, Xiao-Hu Ren, Zhi-Xiong Zhuang, Lin-Qing Yang, Hai-Yan Huang, Li Pang, De-Sheng Wu, Jia Luo, You-Li Tan, Jian-Jun Liu, Fei Zou
ABSTRACT

Chromium is a potent human mutagen and carcinogen. The capability of chromium to cause cancers has been known for more than a century, and numerous epidemiological studies have been performed to determine its carcinogenicity. In the post-genome era, cancer has been found to relate to epigenetic mutations. However, very few researches have focused on hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI))-induced epigenetic alterations. The present study was designed to investigate whether Cr(VI) would affect the level of a newfound epigenetic modification: histone biotinylation. Histone acetylation and histone biotinylation were studied in detail using human bronchial epithelial (16HBE) cells as an in vitro model after Cr(VI) treatment. Our study showed that Cr(VI) treatment decreased histone acetylation level in 16HBE cells. In addition, low doses of Cr(VI) (≤0.6μM) elevated the level of histone biotinylation. Furthermore, immunoblot analysis of biotinidase (BTD), a major protein which maintains homeostasis of histone biotinylation, showed that the distribution of BTD became less even and more concentrated at the nuclear periphery in cells exposed to Cr(VI). Moreover, Cr(VI)-induced histone deacetylation may take part in the regulation of histone biotinylation. Together, our study provides new insight into the mechanisms of Cr(VI)-induced epigenetic regulation that may contribute to the chemoprevention of Cr(VI)-induced cancers and may have important implications for epigenetic therapy.

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