Resveratrol, by modulating RNA processing factor levels, can influence the alternative splicing of Pre-mRNAs

M. Andrea Markus, Francine Z. Marques, Brian J. Morris

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28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Alternative pre-mRNA splicing defects can contribute to, or result from, various diseases, including cancer. Aberrant mRNAs, splicing factors and other RNA processing factors have therefore become targets for new therapeutic interventions. Here we report that the natural polyphenol resveratrol can modulate alternative splicing in a target-specific manner. We transfected minigenes of several alternatively spliceable primary mRNAs into HEK293 cells in the presence or absence of 1, 5, 20 and 50 μM resveratrol and measured exon levels by semi-quantitative PCR after separation by agarose gel electrophoresis. We found that 20 μg/ml and 50 μg/ml of resveratrol affected exon inclusion of SRp20 and SMN2 pre-mRNAs, but not CD44v5 or tau pre-mRNAs. By Western blotting and immunofluorescence we showed that this effect may be due to the ability of resveratrol to change the protein level but not the localization of several RNA processing factors. The processing factors that increased significantly were ASF/SF2, hnRNPA1 and HuR, but resveratrol did not change the levels of RBM4, PTBP1 and U2AF35. By means of siRNA-mediated knockdown we depleted cells of SIRT1, regarded as a major target of resveratrol, and showed that the effect on splicing was not dependent on SIRT1. Our results suggest that resveratrol might be an attractive small molecule to treat diseases in which aberrant splicing has been implicated, and justify more extensive research on the effects of resveratrol on the splicing machinery.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere28926
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume6
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Dec 2011
Externally publishedYes

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