Nicotine coregulates multiple pathways involved in protein modification/degradation in rat brain
Molecular Brain Research
181 - 191
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Previously, we used cDNA microarrays to demonstrate that the phosphatidylinositol and MAP kinase signaling pathways are regulated by nicotine in different rat brain regions. In the present report, we show that, after exposure to nicotine for 14 days, ubiquitin, ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes, 20S and 19S proteasomal subunits, and chaperonin-containing TCP-1 protein (CCT) complex members are upregulated in rat prefrontal cortex (PFC) while being downregulated in the medial basal hypothalamus (MBH). In particular, relative to saline controls, ubiquitins B and C were upregulated by 33% and 47% (P<0.01), respectively, in the PFC. The proteasome beta subunit 1 (PSMB1) and 26S ATPase 3 (PSMC3) genes were upregulated in the PFC by 95% and 119% (P<0.001), respectively. In addition to the protein degradation pathway of the ubiquitin-proteasome complexes, we observed in the PFC an increase in the expression of small, ubiquitin-related modifiers (SUMO) 1 and 2 by 80% and 33%, respectively (P<0.001), and in 3 of 6 CCT subunits by up to 150% (P<0.0001). To a lesser extent, a change in the opposite direction was obtained in the expression of the same gene families in the MBH. Quantitative real-time RT-PCR was used to validate the microarray results obtained with some representative genes involved in these pathways. Taken together, our results suggest that, in response to systemic nicotine administration, the ubiquitin-proteasome, SUMO, and chaperonin complexes provide an intricate control mechanism to maintain cellular homeostasis, possibly by regulating the composition and signaling of target neurons in a region-specific manner.
Ubiquitin conjugating enzyme
Oligonucleotide array sequence analysis
Proteasome endopeptidase complex