S-nitrosylation in the regulation of gene transcription.
BACKGROUND: Post-translational modification of proteins by S-nitrosylation serves as a major mode of signaling in mammalian cells and a growing body of evidence has shown that transcription factors and their activating pathways are primary targets. S-nitrosylation directly modifies a number of transcription factors, including NF-κB, HIF-1, and AP-1. In addition, S-nitrosylation can indirectly regulate gene transcription by modulating other cell signaling pathways, in particular JNK kinase and ras. SCOPE OF REVIEW: The evolution of S-nitrosylation as a signaling mechanism in the regulation of gene transcription, physiological advantages of protein S-nitrosylation in the control of gene transcription, and discussion of the many transcriptional proteins modulated by S-nitrosylation is summarized. MAJOR CONCLUSIONS: S-nitrosylation plays a crucial role in the control of mammalian gene transcription with numerous transcription factors regulated by this modification. Many of these proteins serve as immunomodulators, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) is regarded as a principal mediatiator of NO-dependent S-nitrosylation. However, additional targets within the nucleus (e.g. histone deacetylases) and alternative mechanisms of S-nitrosylation (e.g. GAPDH-mediated trans-nitrosylation) are thought to play a role in NOS-dependent transcriptional regulation. GENERAL SIGNIFICANCE: Derangement of SNO-regulated gene transcription is an important factor in a variety of pathological conditions including neoplasia and sepsis. A better understanding of protein S-nitrosylation as it relates to gene transcription and the physiological mechanisms behind this process is likely to lead to novel therapies for these disorders. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Regulation of Cellular Processes by S-nitrosylation.
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