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  • MYCN and PRC1 cooperatively repress docosahexaenoic acid synthesis in neuroblastoma via ELOVL2.

MYCN and PRC1 cooperatively repress docosahexaenoic acid synthesis in neuroblastoma via ELOVL2.

Journal of experimental & clinical cancer research : CR (2019-12-21)
Yi Ding, Jie Yang, Yawen Ma, Tengteng Yao, Xingyu Chen, Shengfang Ge, Lihua Wang, Xianqun Fan

The MYCN amplification is a defining hallmark of high-risk neuroblastoma. Due to irregular oncogenes orchestration, tumor cells exhibit distinct fatty acid metabolic features from non-tumor cells. However, the function of MYCN in neuroblastoma fatty acid metabolism reprogramming remains unknown. Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS) was used to find the potential target fatty acid metabolites of MYCN. Real-time PCR (RT-PCR) and clinical bioinformatics analysis was used to find the related target genes. The function of the identified target gene ELOVL2 on cell growth was detected through CCK-8 assay, Soft agar colony formation assay, flow Cytometry assay and mouse xenograft. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) and Immunoprecipitation-Mass Spectrometer (IP-MS) further identified the target gene and the co-repressor of MYCN. The fatty acid profile of MYCN-depleted neuroblastoma cells identified docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid with anti-tumor activity, significantly increased after MYCN depletion. Compared with MYCN single-copy neuroblastoma cells, DHA level was significantly lower in MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma cells. RT-PCR and clinical bioinformatics analysis discovered that MYCN interfered DHA accumulation via ELOVL fatty acid elongase 2 (ELOVL2) which is a rate-limiting enzyme of cellular DHA synthesis. Enforced ELOVL2 expression in MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma cells led to decreased cell growth and counteracted the growth-promoting effect of MYCN overexpression both in vitro and vivo. ELOVL2 Knockdown showed the opposite effect in MYCN single-copy neuroblastoma cells. In primary neuroblastoma, high ELOVL2 transcription correlated with favorable clinical tumor biology and patient survival. The mechanism of MYCN-mediated ELOVL2 inhibition contributed to epigenetic regulation. MYCN recruited PRC1 (Polycomb repressive complex 1), catalysed H2AK119ub (histone 2A lysine 119 monoubiquitination) and inhibited subsequent ELOVL2 transcription. The tumor suppressive properties of DHA and ELOVL2 are repressed by the MYCN and PRC1 jointly, which suggests a new epigenetic mechanism of MYCN-mediated fatty acid regulation and indicates PRC1 inhibition as a potential novel strategy to activate ELOVL2 suppressive functions.

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