The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism Journal Article

PLIN2 Functions As a Novel Link Between Progesterone Signaling and Metabolism in Uterine Leiomyoma Cells

July 23, 2019

Ijeoma Okeigwe, Serdar Bulun, Shimeng Liu, Alfred W Rademaker, John S Coon, V, Stacy Kujawa, Jared Robins, Ping Yin
The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, Volume 104, Issue 12, December 2019, Pages 6256–6264
https://doi.org/10.1210/jc.2019-00762

Abstract

Context

Uterine leiomyoma (fibroids) are the most common tumors in women. Recently, perilipin-2 (PLIN2) was identified as a critical target gene of the progesterone receptor; however, its function in the pathogenesis of fibroids is unknown.

Objective

To determine the function of PLIN2 in leiomyoma cells.

Design

Tissue and primary cells from leiomyoma and myometrium were analyzed. PLIN2 function in leiomyoma was assessed using small interfering RNA. RNA-sequencing was performed to identify genome-wide effects of PLIN2 depletion. Metabolic activity was measured using the Seahorse XF96 analyzer. Real-time quantitative PCR and immunoblotting were also performed.

Setting

Laboratory.

Patients or Other Participants

Forty-one premenopausal women undergoing surgery for fibroids.

Main Outcome Measures

Gene expression, oxygen consumption rate (OCR), extracellular acidification rate (ECAR), and cell proliferation.

Results

PLIN2 gene expression was 2.4-fold lower in leiomyoma compared with adjacent myometrium, suggesting a link between PLIN2 deficiency and fibroids. A total of 3877 genes were differentially expressed after PLIN2 knockdown. Gene ontology analysis identified metabolism as the second-highest biological process affected by PLIN2 depletion. OCR (mitochondrial respiration) and ECAR (glycolysis) were significantly upregulated after PLIN2 knockdown; PLIN2-depleted cells had a greater basal metabolic activity and higher metabolic stress response. Cell proliferation was also significantly increased after PLIN2 knockdown.

Conclusion

PLIN2 depletion increases mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis, suggesting that PLIN2 is a critical regulator of metabolic function in leiomyoma cells. PLIN2 deficiency also reprograms leiomyoma cells to a proproliferative phenotype. These findings introduce metabolomics as an area to explore to better understand leiomyoma tumorigenesis.

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