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Gulo regulates the proliferation, apoptosis and mesenchymal-to-epithelial transformation of metanephric mesenchyme cells via inhibiting Six2

He, Qingling, Chen, Lei, Liu, Yamin, Wu, Yafei, Ni, Dongsheng, Liu, Jianing, Hu, Yanxia, Gu, Yuping, Xie, Yajun, Zhou, Qin, Li, Qianyin
Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2018 v.504 no.4 pp. 885-891
L-gulonolactone oxidase, apoptosis, ascorbic acid, epithelium, kidneys
During kidney development, the balance between self-renewal and differentiation of metanephric mesenchyme (MM) cells, mainly regulated by Sine oculis-related homeobox 2 (Six2), is critical for forming mature kidney. L-gulono-γ-lactone oxidase (Gulo), a crucial enzyme for vitamin C synthesis, reveals a different expression at various stages during kidney development, but its function in the early renal development remains unknown. In this work, we aim to study the role of Gulo in MM cells at two differentiation stages. We found that Gulo expression in undifferentiated MM (mK3) cells was lower than in differentiated MM (mK4) cells. Over-expression of Gulo can promote mesenchymal-to-epithelial transformation (MET) and apoptosis and inhibit the proliferation in mK3 cells. Knock-down of Gulo in mK4 cells made its epithelial character cells unstabilized, facilitated the proliferation and restrained the apoptosis. Furthermore, we found that Six2 was negatively regulated by Gulo, and over-expression or knock-down of Six2 was able to rescue partially the MET, proliferation and apoptosis of MM cells caused by Gulo. In conclusion, these findings reveal that Gulo promotes the MET and apoptosis, and inhibits proliferation in MM cells by down-regulating Six2.