Topoisomerase inhibitors unsilence the dormant allele of Ube3a in neurons

Nature
Hsien-Sung HuangBenjamin D Philpot

Abstract

Angelman syndrome is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder caused by deletion or mutation of the maternal allele of the ubiquitin protein ligase E3A (UBE3A). In neurons, the paternal allele of UBE3A is intact but epigenetically silenced, raising the possibility that Angelman syndrome could be treated by activating this silenced allele to restore functional UBE3A protein. Using an unbiased, high-content screen in primary cortical neurons from mice, we identify twelve topoisomerase I inhibitors and four topoisomerase II inhibitors that unsilence the paternal Ube3a allele. These drugs included topotecan, irinotecan, etoposide and dexrazoxane (ICRF-187). At nanomolar concentrations, topotecan upregulated catalytically active UBE3A in neurons from maternal Ube3a-null mice. Topotecan concomitantly downregulated expression of the Ube3a antisense transcript that overlaps the paternal copy of Ube3a. These results indicate that topotecan unsilences Ube3a in cis by reducing transcription of an imprinted antisense RNA. When administered in vivo, topotecan unsilenced the paternal Ube3a allele in several regions of the nervous system, including neurons in the hippocampus, neocortex, striatum, cerebellum and spinal cord. Paternal expression of...Continue Reading

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Related Concepts

Ube3a protein, mouse
Alleles
Metazoa
Insula of Reil
Medicinal Plants Testing, Preclinical
Father
Mice, Inbred C57BL
Mother
Neurons
Angelman Syndrome

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