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Current Genomics (1)
Genes & Nutrition (1)
Galluzzo, Paola (2)
Marino, Maria (2)
Ascenzi, Paolo (1)
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Estrogen Signaling Multiple Pathways to Impact Gene Transcription
Steroid hormones exert profound effects on cell growth, development, differentiation, and homeostasis. Their effects are mediated through specific intracellular steroid receptors that act via multiple mechanisms. Among others, the action mechanism starting upon 17β-estradiol (E2) binds to its receptors (ER) is considered a paradigmatic example of how steroid hormones function. Ligand-activated ER dimerizes and translocates in the nucleus where it recognizes specific hormone response elements located in or near promoter DNA regions of target genes. Behind the classical genomic mechanism shared with other steroid hormones, E2 also modulates gene expression by a second indirect mechanism that involves the interaction of ER with other transcription factors which, in turn, bind their cognate DNA elements. In this case, ER modulates the activities of transcription factors such as the activator protein (AP)-1, nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) and stimulating protein-1 (Sp-1), by stabilizing DNA-protein complexes and/or recruiting co-activators. In addition, E2 binding to ER may also exert rapid actions that start with the activation of a variety of signal transduction pathways (e.g. ERK/MAPK, p38/MAPK, PI3K/AKT, PLC/PKC). The debate about the contribution of different ER-mediated signaling pathways to coordinate the expression of specific sets of genes is still open. This review will focus on the recent knowledge about the mechanism by which ERs regulate the expression of target genes and the emerging field of integration of membrane and nuclear receptor signaling, giving examples of the ways by which the genomic and non-genomic actions of ERs on target genes converge.
Estrogen; estrogen receptors; genomic and non-genomic action mechanism; gene transcription
Nutritional flavonoids impact on nuclear and extranuclear estrogen receptor activities
Genes & Nutrition
Flavonoids are a large group of nonnutrient compounds naturally produced from plants as part of their defence mechanisms against stresses of different origins. They emerged from being considered an agricultural oddity only after it was observed that these compounds possess a potential protective function against several human degenerative diseases. This has led to recommending the consumption of food containing high concentrations of flavonoids, which at present, especially as soy isoflavones, are even available as overthecounter nutraceuticals. The increased use of flavonoids has occurred even though their mechanisms are not completely understood, in particular those involving the flavonoid impact on estrogen signals. In fact, most of the human health protective effects of flavonoids are described either as estrogenmimetic, or as antiestrogenic, while others do not involve estrogen signaling at all. Thus, the same molecule is reported as an endocrine disruptor, an estrogen mimetic or as an antioxidant without estrogenic effects. This is due in part to the complexity of the estrogen mechanism, which is conducted by different pathways and involves two different receptor isoforms. These pathways can be modulated by flavonoids and should be considered for a reliable evaluation of flavonoid, both estrogenicity and antiestrogenicity, and for a correct prediction of their effects on human health.
17β-Estradiol; Estrogen Receptor-α; Estrogen Receptor-β; Flavonoids; Gene Transcription; Signal Transduction Cascade
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