Lourdes Sánchez de Miguel a , Javier Alonso a , Fernando González-Fernández a , Jesús de la Osada b , Mercedes Montón a , Juan A. Rodríguez-Feo a , José I. Guerra a , María M. Arriero a , Luis Rico a , Santos Casado a , Antonio López-Farré a
18 June 1999
Changes in the endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) expression could be involved in the endothelium-dependent vasorelaxing dysfunction associated with cardiovascular diseases. We have recently demonstrated the existence of endothelial cytosolic proteins that bind to the 3′-untranslated region (3′-UTR) of eNOS mRNA and could be involved in eNOS mRNA stabilization. In the present work, we have characterized the cytosolic proteins that bind to 3′-UTR eNOS mRNA. An endothelial cytosolic protein (MW 60-kD) specifically bound to 3′-UTR eNOS mRNA as determined by a cross-linking assay followed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The endothelial cytosolic protein recognized a cytidine (C)-rich region within 3′-UTR eNOS mRNA. Furthermore, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) increased the level of the 60-kD endothelial cytosolic protein. In addition, TNF-α reduced eNOS mRNA levels and this was prevented by coincubation with cycloheximide. Cycloheximide also prevented the binding activity of the endothelial cytosolic protein to 3′-UTR eNOS mRNA. In summary, these data suggest that a 60-kD endothelial cytosolic protein binds to 3′-UTR eNOS mRNA. TNF-α increased the 60-kD protein levels. Cycloheximide prevented the binding activity of the cytosolic protein to 3′-UTR eNOS mRNA related to TNF-α; this effect was associated with greater eNOS mRNA levels. Further specific studies are needed to determine the involvement of this 60-kD endothelial cytosolic protein in the regulation of eNOS mRNA stabilization and in the endothelial dysfunction associated with cardiovascular diseases.