Pyruvate Dehydrogenase A1 Phosphorylated by Insulin Associates with Pyruvate Kinase M2 and Induces LINC00273 through Histone Acetylation

Biomedicines. 2022 May 27;10(6):1256. doi: 10.3390/biomedicines10061256.


Insulin potently promotes cell proliferation and anabolic metabolism along with a reduction in blood glucose levels. Pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) plays a pivotal role in glucose metabolism. Insulin increase PDH activity by attenuating phosphorylated Ser293 PDH E1α (p-PDHA1) in normal liver tissue. In contrast to normal hepatocytes, insulin enhanced p-PDHA1 level and induced proliferation of hepatocellular carcinoma HepG2 cells. Here, we attempted to find a novel function of p-PDHA1 in tumorigenesis upon insulin stimulation. We found that p-Ser293 E1α, but not the E2 or E3 subunit of pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDC), co-immunoprecipitated with pyruvate kinase M2 (PKM2) upon insulin. Of note, the p-PDHA1 along with PKM2 translocated to the nucleus. The p-PDHA1/PKM2 complex was associated with the promoter of long intergenic non-protein coding (LINC) 00273 gene (LINC00273) and recruited p300 histone acetyl transferase (HAT) and ATP citrate lyase (ACL), leading to histone acetylation. Consequently, the level of transcription factor ZEB1, an epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) marker, was promoted through increased levels of LINC00273, resulting in cell migration upon insulin. p-PDHA1, along with PKM2, may be crucial for transcriptional regulation of specific genes through epigenetic regulation upon insulin in hepatocarcinoma cells.

Keywords: LINC00273; PKM2; histone acetylation; insulin; p-PDHA1.