Yeon Ju Cha, Ji Eun Baik, and Won Jong Rhee
Yeon Ju Cha, Ji Eun Baik, Won Jong Rhee*
Division of Bioengineering, Incheon National University, Incheon 406-772, Korea
Tel: +82-32-835-8299; Fax: +82-32-835-0763; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Received: 22 October 2017 / Revised: 17 January 2018 / Accepted: 26 January 2018
© The Korean Society for Biotechnology and Bioengineering and Springer 2018
The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) plays essential roles indispensable for cellular activity and survival, including functions such as protein synthesis, secretory and membrane protein folding, and Ca2+ release in cells. The ER is sensitive to stresses that can lead to the aggregation and accumulation of misfolded proteins, which eventually triggers cellular dysfunction; severe or prolonged ER stress eventually induces apoptosis. ER stress-induced apoptosis causes several devastating diseases such as atherosclerosis, neurodegenerative diseases, and diabetes. In addition, the production of biopharmaceuticals such as monoclonal antibodies requires the maintenance of normal ER functions to achieve and maintain the production of high-quality products in good quantities. Therefore, it is necessary to develop methods to efficiently relieve ER stress and protect cells from ER stress-induced apoptosis. The silkworm storage protein 1 (SP1) has anti-apoptotic activities that inhibit the intrinsic mitochondrial apoptotic pathway. However, the role of SP1 in controlling ER stress and ER stress-induced apoptosis has not been investigated. In this paper, we demonstrate that SP1 can inhibit apoptosis induced by a well-known ER stress inducer, thapsigargin, by alleviating the decrease in cell viability and mitochondrial membrane potential. Interestingly, SP1 significantly blocked increases in CHOP and GRP78 expression as well as ER Ca2+ leakage into the cytosol following ER stress induction. This indicates that SP1 protects cells from ER stressinduced apoptosis by functioning as an upstream inhibitor of apoptosis. Therefore, studying SP1 function can offer new insights into protecting cells against ER stress-induced apoptosis for future applications in the biopharmaceutical and medicine industries.
endoplasmic reticulum (ER), ER stress, apoptosis, silkworm, storage protein 1