SLC6A14 facilitates epithelial cell ferroptosis via the C/EBPβ-PAK6 axis in ulcerative colitis
Yanjun Chen, Wenying Yan, Yuqi Chen, Jinhan Zhu, Jiayu Wang, Haiyan Jin, Hongya Wu, Guangbo Zhang, Shenghua Zhan, Qinhua Xi, Tongguo Shi, Weichang Chen
Emerging evidence suggests that ferroptosis is involved in the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis (UC). However, the key regulator of this process remains uncertain. In this study, we aimed to explore the roles of solute carrier (SLC) family 6 member 14 (SLC6A14) in regulating ferroptosis in UC. The expression of SLC6A14 was significantly increased and positively associated with that of prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2) in tissue samples from patients with UC. Moreover, a series of in vitro and in vivo experiments showed that SLC6A14 knockdown markedly suppressed ferroptosis. RNA sequencing revealed that SLC6A14 inhibited the expression of P21 (RAC1) activated kinase 6 (PAK6) and that PAK6 knockdown abolished the effects of SLC6A14 on RAS-selective lethal 3 (RSL3) -induced ferroptosis in Caco-2 cells. Furthermore, chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) and Western blot analysis demonstrated that SLC6A14 negatively regulated PAK6 expression in a CCAAT enhancer binding protein beta (C/EBPβ)-dependent manner. Collectively, these findings indicate that SLC6A14 facilitates ferroptosis in UC by promoting C/EBPβ expression and binding activity to inhibit PAK6 expression, suggesting that targeting SLC6A14-C/EBPβ-PAK6 axis-mediated ferroptosis may be a promising therapeutic alternative for UC.
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