ATF6 upregulates XBP1S and inhibits ER stress-mediated apoptosis in osteoarthritis cartilage

Feng-Jin Guo, Zhangyuan Xiong, Xiaojie Lu, Mengliang Ye, Xiaofeng Han, Rong Jiang
Cellular Signalling 2014, 26 (2): 332-42
As we previously reported, transcription factor XBP1S enhances BMP2-induced chondrocyte differentiation and acts as a positive mediator of chondrocyte hypertrophy. The purpose of this study was to determine (1) whether XBP1S influences ER stress-mediated apoptosis in osteoarthritis (OA); (2) whether ATF6 regulates IRE1/XBP1 signal pathway in OA cartilage; (3) what are the associated molecules affecting apoptosis in osteoarthritis and the molecular events underlying this process. Herein, we examined and found that ER stress-associated molecules were activated in OA patients, specifically XBP1S splice and expression were increased markedly by TNF-α and IL-1β treatments. Transcription factor ATF6 can specifically bind to the promoter of XBP1 gene and enhance the expression of XBP1S spliced by IRE1α in osteoarthritis cartilage. Furthermore, siXBP1S can enhance ER stress-mediated apoptosis and main matrix degradation in osteoarthritis. Whereas AdXBP1S can inhibit ER stress-mediated apoptosis and TNFα induced nitrite production in OA cartilage. In a word, our observations demonstrate the importance of XBP1S in osteoarthritis. ATF6 and IRE1α can regulate endogenous XBP1S gene expression synergistically in OA cartilage. More significantly, XBP1S was a negative regulator of apoptosis in osteoarthritis by affecting caspase 3, caspase 9, caspase 12, p-JNK1, and CHOP.

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