DNA damage signaling triggers degradation of histone methyltransferases through APC/C Cdh1 in senescent cells

Akiko Takahashi, Yoshinori Imai, Kimi Yamakoshi, Shinji Kuninaka, Naoko Ohtani, Shin Yoshimoto, Satoshi Hori, Makoto Tachibana, Emma Anderton, Takashi Takeuchi, Yoichi Shinkai, Gordon Peters, Hideyuki Saya, Eiji Hara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Citations (Scopus)


Both the DNA damage response (DDR) and epigenetic mechanisms play key roles in the implementation of senescent phenotypes, but very little is known about how these two mechanisms are integrated to establish senescence-associated gene expression. Here we show that, in senescent cells, the DDR induces proteasomal degradation of G9a and GLP, major histone H3K9 mono- and dimethyltransferases, through Cdc14B- and p21 Waf1/Cip1-dependent activation of APC/C Cdh1 ubiquitin ligase, thereby causing a global decrease in H3K9 dimethylation, an epigenetic mark for euchromatic gene silencing. Interestingly, induction of IL-6 and IL-8, major players of the senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP), correlated with a decline of H3K9 dimethylation around the respective gene promoters and knockdown of Cdh1 abolished IL-6/IL-8 expression in senescent cells, suggesting that the APC/C Cdh1-G9a/GLP axis plays crucial roles in aspects of senescent phenotype. These findings establish a role for APC/C Cdh1 and reveal how the DDR integrates with epigenetic processes to induce senescence-associated gene expression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-131
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Cell
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jan 13

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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