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PLoS By Category | Recent PLoS Articles
Biochemistry - Molecular Biology - Ophthalmology

Molecular Basis for Involvement of CYP1B1 in MYOC Upregulation and Its Potential Implication in Glaucoma Pathogenesis
Published: Friday, September 21, 2012
Author: Suddhasil Mookherjee et al.

by Suddhasil Mookherjee, Moulinath Acharya, Deblina Banerjee, Ashima Bhattacharjee, Kunal Ray

CYP1B1 has been implicated in primary congenital glaucoma with autosomal recessive mode of inheritance. Mutations in CYP1B1 have also been reported in primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) cases and suggested to act as a modifier of the disease along with Myocilin (MYOC). Earlier reports suggest that over-expression of myocilin leads to POAG pathogenesis. Taken together, we propose a functional interaction between CYP1B1 and myocilin where 17ß estradiol acts as a mediator. Therefore, we hypothesize that 17ß estradiol can induce MYOC expression through the putative estrogen responsive elements (EREs) located in its promoter and CYP1B1 could manipulate MYOC expression by metabolizing 17ß estradiol to 4-hydroxy estradiol, thus preventing it from binding to MYOC promoter. Hence any mutation in CYP1B1 that reduces its 17ß estradiol metabolizing activity might lead to MYOC upregulation, which in turn might play a role in glaucoma pathogenesis. It was observed that 17ß estradiol is present in Human Trabecular Meshwork cells (HTM) and Retinal Pigment Epithelial cells (RPE) by immunoflouresence and ELISA. Also, the expression of enzymes related to estrogen biosynthesis pathway was observed in both cell lines by RT-PCR. Subsequent evaluation of the EREs in the MYOC promoter by luciferase assay, with dose and time dependent treatment of 17ß estradiol, showed that the EREs are indeed active. This observation was further validated by direct binding of estrogen receptors (ER) on EREs in MYOC promoter and subsequent upregulation in MYOC level in HTM cells on 17ß estradiol treatment. Interestingly, CYP1B1 mutants with less than 10% enzymatic activity were found to increase the level of endogenous myocilin in HTM cells. Thus the experimental observations are consistent with our proposed hypothesis that mutant CYP1B1, lacking the 17ß estradiol metabolizing activity, can cause MYOC upregulation, which might have a potential implication in glaucoma pathogenesis.
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