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PPAR Research
Volume 2010, Article ID 727194, 14 pages
Research Article

Regulation of Proteome Maintenance Gene Expression by Activators of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor α

1NHEERL Toxicogenomics Core, US EPA, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711, USA
2Department of Pharmacology, Physiology and Therapeutics, University of North Dakota, School of Medicine, 501 N. Columbia Road, Grand Forks, ND 58203-2817, USA
3Syngenta Central Toxicology Laboratory, Alderley Park, Cheshire SK104TJ, UK
4Integrated Systems Toxicology Division, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Lab , US Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711, USA

Received 14 June 2010; Revised 13 October 2010; Accepted 1 November 2010

Academic Editor: Christopher Lau

Copyright © 2010 Hongzu Ren et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα) is activated by a large number of xenobiotic and hypolipidemic compounds called peroxisome proliferator chemicals (PPCs). One agonist of PPARα (WY-14,643) regulates responses in the mouse liver to chemical stress in part by altering expression of genes involved in proteome maintenance (PM) including protein chaperones in the heat shock protein (Hsp) family and proteasomal genes (Psm) involved in proteolysis. We hypothesized that other PPARα activators including diverse hypolipidemic and xenobiotic compounds also regulate PM genes in the rat and mouse liver. We examined the expression of PM genes in rat and mouse liver after exposure to 7 different PPCs (WY-14,643, clofibrate, fenofibrate, valproic acid, di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, perfluorooctanoic acid, and perfluorooctane sulfonate) using Affymetrix microarrays. In rats and mice, 174 or 380 PM genes, respectively, were regulated by at least one PPC. The transcriptional changes were, for the most part, dependent on PPARα, as most changes were not observed in similarly treated PPARα-null mice and the changes were not consistently observed in rats treated with activators of the nuclear receptors CAR or PXR. In rats and mice, PM gene expression exhibited differences compared to typical direct targets of PPARα (e.g., Cyp4a family members). PM gene expression was usually delayed and in some cases, it was transient. Dose-response characterization of protein expression showed that Hsp86 and Hsp110 proteins were induced only at higher doses. These studies demonstrate that PPARα, activated by diverse PPC, regulates the expression of a large number of genes involved in protein folding and degradation and support an expanded role for PPARα in the regulation of genes that protect the proteome.