The Journal of biological chemistry

PGC-1 alpha serine 570 phosphorylation and GCN5-mediated acetylation by angiotensin II drive catalase down-regulation and vascular hypertrophy.

PMID 19940161


Angiotensin II (Ang II) is a pleuripotential hormone that is important in the pathophysiology of multiple conditions including aging, cardiovascular and renal diseases, and insulin resistance. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are important mediators of Ang II-induced signaling generally and have a well defined role in vascular hypertrophy, which is inhibited by overexpression of catalase, inferring a specific role of H(2)O(2). The molecular mechanisms are understood incompletely. The transcriptional coactivator peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator-1 alpha (PGC-1 alpha) is a key regulator of energy metabolism and ROS-scavenging enzymes including catalase. We show that Ang II stimulates Akt-dependent PGC-1 alpha serine 570 phosphorylation, which is required for the binding of the histone acetyltransferase GCN5 (general control nonderepressible 5) to PGC-1 alpha and for its lysine acetylation. These sequential post-translational modifications suppress PGC-1 alpha activity and prevent its binding to the catalase promoter through the forkhead box O1 transcription factor, thus decreasing catalase expression. We demonstrate that overexpression of the phosphorylation-defective mutant PGC-1 alpha (S570A) prevents Ang II-induced increases in H(2)O(2) levels and hypertrophy ([(3)H]leucine incorporation). Knockdown of PGC-1 alpha by small interfering RNA promotes basal and Ang II-stimulated ROS and hypertrophy, which is reversed by polyethylene glycol-conjugated catalase. Thus, endogenous PGC-1 alpha is a negative regulator of vascular hypertrophy by up-regulating catalase expression and thus reducing ROS levels. We provide novel mechanistic insights by which Ang II may mediate its ROS-dependent pathophysiologic effects on multiple cardiometabolic diseases.