Rodríguez-Berdini et al. J Biol Chem. 2020
Differentiation of neuronal cells is crucial for the development and function of the nervous system. This process involves high rates of membrane expansion, during which the synthesis of membrane lipids must be tightly regulated. In this work, using a variety of molecular and biochemical assays and approaches, including immunofluorescence microscopy and FRET analyses, we demonstrate that the proto-oncogene c-Fos (c-Fos) activates cytoplasmic lipid synthesis in the central nervous system and thereby supports neuronal differentiation. Specifically, in hippocampal primary cultures, blocking c-Fos expression or its activity impairs neuronal differentiation. When examining its subcellular localization, we found that c-Fos co-localizes with endoplasmic reticulum markers and strongly interacts with lipid-synthesizing enzymes, whose activities were markedly increased in vitro in the presence of recombinant c-Fos. Of note, the expression of c-Fos dominant-negative variants capable of blocking its lipid synthesis-activating activity impaired neuronal differentiation. Moreover, using an in utero electroporation model, we observed that neurons with blocked c-Fos expression or lacking its AP-1-independent activity fail to initiate cortical development. These results highlight the importance of c-Fos-mediated activation of lipid synthesis for proper nervous system development.
Authors: Rodríguez-Berdini L, Ferrero GO, Bustos Plonka F, Cardozo Gizzi AM, Prucca CG, Quiroga S, Caputto BL.
Article: The moonlighting protein c-Fos activates lipid synthesis in neurons, an activity that is critical for cellular differentiation and cortical development. Rodríguez-Berdini L, Ferrero GO, Bustos Plonka F, Cardozo Gizzi AM, Prucca CG, Quiroga S, Caputto BL. J Biol Chem. 2020 May 8:jbc.RA119.010129. doi: 10.1074/jbc.RA119.010129.