5-hydroxymethylcytosine is a key epigenetic regulator of keratinocyte stem cells during psoriasis pathogenesis
Yuan, Christine Wan-Yin
MetadataShow full item record
Epigenetic regulation is now known to play an important role in determining stem cell fate during normal tissue development and disease pathogenesis. In this study, we report loss of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5-hmC) mediated by ten-eleven translocation (TET) methylcytosine dioxygenases in keratinocyte stem cells (KSCs) and in their progenitor transit-amplifying (TA) cells of psoriatic lesions. We establish the DNA hydroxymethylation profile in both human psoriasis as well as in the imiquimod (IMQ)-induced mouse psoriasis model. Genome-wide mapping of 5-hmC in IMQ-treated mice epithelium revealed a loci-specific reduction of 5-hmC in genes associated with maintaining stem cell homeostasis including those involved in the RAR and Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathways. Restoration of TET expression in human KSC cultures via vitamin C treatment increased 5-hmC levels and induced more normal KSC differentiation. We found that by modulating 5-hmC levels in vitro, we could alter downstream expression of genes important in regulating stem cell homeostasis like nestin as well as IL-17R known to promote the psoriatic phenotype. Our findings demonstrate that loss of 5-hmC is a critical epigenomic phenomenon in KSCs and TA cells during psoriasis pathogenesis.