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FOXO4 transcriptional activity is regulated by monoubiquitination and USP7/HAUSP.

van der Horst A., de Vries-Smits A.M., Brenkman A.B., van Triest M.H., van den Broek N., Colland F., Maurice M.M., Burgering B.M.

FOXO (Forkhead box O) transcription factors are important regulators of cellular metabolism, cell-cycle progression and cell death. FOXO activity is regulated by multiple post-translational modifications, including phosphorylation, acetylation and polyubiquitination. Here, we show that FOXO becomes monoubiquitinated in response to increased cellular oxidative stress, resulting in its re-localization to the nucleus and an increase in its transcriptional activity. Deubiquitination of FOXO requires the deubiquitinating enzyme USP7/HAUSP (herpesvirus-associated ubiquitin-specific protease), which interacts with and deubiquitinates FOXO in response to oxidative stress. Oxidative stress-induced ubiquitination and deubiquitination by USP7 do not influence FOXO protein half-life. However, USP7 does negatively regulate FOXO transcriptional activity towards endogenous promoters. Our results demonstrate a novel mechanism of FOXO regulation and indicate that USP7 has an important role in regulating FOXO-mediated stress responses.

Nat. Cell Biol. 8:1064-1073(2006) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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