Search Results

You are looking at 1 - 4 of 4 items for

  • Author: WM Wiersinga x
  • Refine by Access: All content x
Clear All Modify Search
Free access

DC Timmer, O Bakker, and WM Wiersinga

The c-erbAalpha gene encodes two thyroid hormone receptors, TRalpha1 and TRalpha2, that arise from alternative splicing of the TRalpha pre-mRNA. TRalpha2 is not able to bind triiodothyronine (T(3)) and acts as a weak antagonist of TRs. It has been suggested that the balance of TRalpha1 to TRalpha2 is important in maintaining homeostasis. Here, we study the effect of thyroid hormone on the splicing of TRalpha under various conditions in HepG2 cells. First, T(3) was added to HepG2 cells that endogenously express TRalpha. This resulted in a decrease in the TRalpha1:TRalpha2 mRNA ratio after the addition of 10(-)(8 )M or 10(-)(7 )M T(3). Then, HepG2 cells were incubated with sera from hypothyroid or hyperthyroid patients. Sera from hyperthyroid patients (n=6) decreased the TRalpha1:TRalpha2 ratio compared with HepG2 cells incubated with sera from euthyroid patients (n=8). Sera from hypothyroid patients (n=6) had no effect on the TRalpha1:TRalpha2 ratio but supplementation with T(3) caused a decrease in the ratio. Finally, we tested sera from patients with nonthyroidal illness (NTI; n=17) which showed no effect on TRalpha splicing when compared with controls. Free thyroxine levels in sera from hypo-, eu-, and hyperthyroid patients, but not that of NTI patients, were negatively correlated (P<0.01) to the TRalpha1:TRalpha2 ratio. We next studied the expression of the splicing factors hnRNP A1 and ASF/SF2 (SF2) in relation to the splicing of the TRalpha gene. In HepG2 cells incubated with NTI sera a negative relationship was found between the ratio of hnRNP A1:SF2 and the TRalpha1:TRalpha2 ratio. A high hnRNP A1:SF2 ratio is associated with the use of the distal 5'-splice site. The splicing direction should then change towards TRalpha2, which is indeed the case. Rev-ErbA, which is partly complementary to TRalpha2 and could therefore interfere in the splicing process, did not relate to the TRalpha1:TRalpha2 ratio.In conclusion, high T(3) levels induce a low TRalpha1:TRalpha2 ratio which could protect the cell from excessive T(3)-induced gene expression. In vivo, this might be a mechanism to keep tIssues relatively euthyroid during high serum T(3) levels.

Free access

MJ Diekman, B Zandieh Doulabi, M Platvoet-Ter Schiphorst, E Fliers, O Bakker, and WM Wiersinga

The gene expression of thyroid hormone receptors (TR) in ECRF24 immortalized human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) was investigated at both the mRNA and the protein level. Endothelin-1 (ET-1) and von Willebrand factor (vWF) production were measured in response to triiodothyronine (T(3)) administration. A real-time PCR technique was used to quantify the presence of mRNAs encoding for the different isoforms of the TR. The binding of T(3) to nuclear TRs was studied in isolated endothelial cell nuclei by Scatchard analysis. Expression of TR at the protein level was investigated by immunocytochemistry and Western blotting using TR-isoform-specific polyclonal rabbit antisera. ET-1 and vWF were measured in cell supernatants with a two-site immunoenzymatic assay. Scatchard analysis yielded a maximum binding capacity of 55 fmol T(3)/mg DNA (+/-200 sites/cell) with a K(d) of 125 pmol/l. Messenger RNAs encoding for the TRalpha1 and the TRalpha2 and the TRbeta1 were observed. The approximate number of mRNA molecules per cell was at least 50 molecules per cell for TRalpha1, five for TRalpha2 and two for TRbeta1. Immunocytochemistry revealed (peri)nuclear staining for TRbeta1, TRalpha1 and TRalpha2. ET-1 and vWF secretion did not increase upon addition of T(3) (10(-10)-10(-6) M). Immortalized ECRF24 HUVECs express TR, but at low levels. The number of TRs per endothelial cell is probably too low to be functional and no change in ET-1 or vWF production was found after addition of T(3). Therefore we conclude that the genomic effects of T(3) are unlikely to occur in these immortalized HUVECs.

Free access

A Boelen, J Kwakkel, DC Thijssen-Timmer, A Alkemade, E Fliers, and WM Wiersinga

During illness, major changes in thyroid hormone metabolism and regulation occur; these are collectively known as non-thyroidal illness and are characterized by decreased serum triiodothyronine (T(3)) and thyroxine (T(4)) without an increase in serum TSH. Whether alterations in the central part of the hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axis precede changes in peripheral thyroid hormone metabolism instead of vice versa, or occur simultaneously, is presently unknown. We therefore studied the time-course of changes in thyroid hormone metabolism in the HPT axis of mice during acute illness induced by bacterial endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide; LPS).LPS rapidly induced interleukin-1beta mRNA expression in the hypothalamus, pituitary, thyroid and liver. This was followed by almost simultaneous changes in the pituitary (decreased expression of thyroid receptor (TR)-beta2, TSHbeta and 5'-deiodinase (D1) mRNAs), the thyroid (decreased TSH receptor mRNA) and the liver (decreased TRbeta1 and D1 mRNA). In the hypothalamus, type 2 deiodinase mRNA expression was strongly increased whereas preproTRH mRNA expression did not change after LPS. Serum T(3) and T(4) fell only after 24 h.Our results suggested almost simultaneous involvement of the whole HPT axis in the downregulation of thyroid hormone metabolism during acute illness.

Free access

B Zandieh-Doulabi, E Dop, M Schneiders, MP Schiphorst, A Mansen, B Vennstrom, CD Dijkstra, O Bakker, and WM Wiersinga

Many metabolic processes occur simultaneously in the liver in different locations along the porto-central axis of the liver units. These processes are often regulated by hormones, one of which is thyroid hormone which for its action depends on the presence of the different isoforms of the thyroid hormone receptor (TR). These are encoded by two genes: c-erbA-alpha encoding TRalpha1 and TRalpha2 and their respective Delta isoforms, and c-erbA-beta which encodes TRbeta1, TRbeta2 and TRbeta3. We recently found a zonal (pericentral) expression of and a diurnal variation in the TRbeta1 isoform in rat liver. We were therefore also interested to see whether TRalpha1 and TRalpha2 expression showed similar characteristics. For this reason we raised both polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies against TRalpha1 and TRalpha2 isoforms and characterised these. Antibody specificity was tested using Western blots and immunohistochemistry in liver of TR isoform-specific knockout animals. Using these antibodies we found that the TRalpha1 and TRalpha2 isoforms are zonally expressed around the central vein in rat liver. The experiments show that the portal to central gradient of TRalpha1 is broader than that of TRbeta1. Moreover, the expression of the TRalpha2 protein showed a diurnal variation with a peak in the afternoon when the animals are least active whereas no such variation was found for the TRalpha1 protein.From our data it appears that both the TRalpha1 and TRalpha2 isoforms show a zonal distribution in liver. This finding, together with the observed diurnal rhythm, has major implications for interpreting and timing experiments concerning the TR and its downstream actions in liver.