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Hyaluronidase-2 regulates RhoA signalling, myofibroblast contractility and other key pro-fibrotic myofibroblast functions

Midgley, Adam C., Woods, Emma, Jenkins, Robert ORCID:, Brown, Charlotte, Khalid, Usman, Chavez, Rafael, Hascall, Vincent, Steadman, Robert ORCID:, Phillips, Aled O. ORCID: and Meran, Soma ORCID: 2020. Hyaluronidase-2 regulates RhoA signalling, myofibroblast contractility and other key pro-fibrotic myofibroblast functions. American Journal of Pathology 190 (6) , pp. 1236-1255. 10.1016/j.ajpath.2020.02.012

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Hyaluronidase-2 (HYAL2) is a weak, acid-active hyaluronan-degrading enzyme that is broadly expressed in somatic tissues. Aberrant HYAL2 expression is implicated in diverse pathology. However, a significant proportion of HYAL2 is enzymatically inactive, thus the mechanisms through which HYAL2 dysregulation influences pathobiology is unclear. Recently, non-enzymatic HYAL2 functions have been described and our group has shown that nuclear HYAL2 can influence mRNA splicing to prevent myofibroblast differentiation. Myofibroblasts drive fibrosis, thereby promoting progressive tissue damage and leading to multimorbidity. This study identifies a novel HYAL2 cytoplasmic function in myofibroblasts that is unrelated to its enzymatic activity. In fibroblasts and myofibroblasts HYAL2 interacts with the small GTPase signaling molecule, RhoA. Transforming Growth Factor (TGF)-β1-driven fibroblast-to-myofibroblast differentiation promotes HYAL2 cytoplasmic re-localization to bind to the actin cytoskeleton. Cytoskeletal-bound HYAL2 functions as a key regulator of downstream RhoA signaling and influences pro-fibrotic myofibroblast functions including myosin light-chain kinase (MLCK) mediated myofibroblast contractility, myofibroblast migration, myofibroblast collagen/fibronectin deposition, as well as connective tissue growth factor (CTGF/CCN2) and matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP2) expression. These data demonstrate that in certain biological contexts the non-enzymatic effects of HYAL2 are critical in orchestrating RhoA signaling and downstream pathways that are important for full pro-fibrotic myofibroblast functionality. In conjunction with previous data demonstrating the influence of HYAL2 on RNA splicing, these findings begin to explain the broad biological effects of HYAL2.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0002-9440
Funders: MRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 8 April 2020
Date of Acceptance: 7 February 2020
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2023 21:34

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