Kosiorek M, Podszywalow-Bartnicka P, Zylinska L, Pikula S
BACKGROUND: The bulk of human genes undergo alternative splicing (AS) upon response to physiological stimuli. AS is a great source of protein diversity and biological processes and is associated with the development of many diseases. Pheochromocytoma is a neuroendocrine tumor, characterized by an excessive Ca2+-dependent secretion of catecholamines. This underlines the importance of balanced control of calcium transport via regulation of gene expression pattern, including different calcium transport systems, such as plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPases (PMCAs), abundantly expressed in pheochromocytoma chromaffin cells (PC12 cells). PMCAs are encoded by four genes (Atp2b1, Atp2b2, Atp2b3, Atp2b4), whose transcript products undergo alternative splicing giving almost 30 variants. RESULTS: In this scientific report, we propose a novel mechanism of regulation of PMCA alternative splicing in PC12 cells through cooperation of the nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFAT) and histone deacetylases (HDACs). Luciferase assays showed increased activity of NFAT in PC12 cells, which was associated with altered expression of PMCA. RT-PCR experiments suggested that inhibition of the transcriptional activity of NFAT might result in the rearrangement of PMCA splicing variants in PC12 cells. NFAT inhibition led to dominant expression of 2x/c, 3x/a and 4x/a PMCA variants, while in untreated cells the 2w,z/b, 3z,x/b,c,e,f, and 4x/b variants were found as well. Furthermore, chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments showed that NFAT1-HDAC4 or NFAT3-HDAC4 complexes might be involved in regulation of PMCA2x splicing variant generation. CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that the influence of NFAT/HDAC on PMCA isoform composition might be important for altered dopamine secretion by PC12 cells.