Histone deacetylase 1 suppresses Krüppel homolog 1 gene expression and influences juvenile hormone action in Tribolium castaneum

Smitha George, Sharath Chandra Gaddelapati, Subba Reddy Palli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Posttranslational modifications, including acetylation and deacetylation of histones and other proteins, modulate hormone action. In Tribolium castaneum TcA cells, Trichostatin A, a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor, mimics juvenile hormone (JH) in inducing JH response genes (e.g., Kr-h1), suggesting that HDACs may be involved in JH action. To test this hypothesis, we identified genes coding for HDACs in T. castaneum and studied their function. Knockdown of 12 HDAC genes showed variable phenotypes; the most severe phenotype was detected in insects injected with double-stranded RNA targeting HDAC1 (dsHDAC1). The dsHDAC1-injected insects showed arrested growth and development and eventually died. Application of JH analogs hydroprene to T. castaneum larvae and JH III to TcA cells suppressed HDAC1 expression. Sequencing of RNA isolated from control and dsHDAC1-injected larvae identified 1,720 differentially expressed genes, of which 1,664 were up-regulated in dsHDAC1-treated insects. The acetylation levels of core histones were increased in TcA cells exposed to dsHDAC1 or JH III. ChIP assays performed using histone H2BK5ac antibodies showed an increase in acetylation in the Kr-h1 promoter region of cells exposed to JH III or dsHDAC1. Overexpression or knockdown of HDAC1, SIN3, or both resulted in a decrease or increase in Kr-h1 mRNA levels and its promoter activity, respectively. Overexpression of the JH receptor Methoprene tolerant (Met) was unable to induce Kr-h1 in the presence of HDAC1 or SIN3. These data suggest that epigenetic modifications influence JH action by modulating acetylation levels of histones and by affecting the recruitment of proteins involved in the regulation of JH response genes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17759-17764
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number36
StatePublished - Sep 3 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.


  • Epigenetics
  • Histone
  • Hydroprene
  • Kr-h1
  • SIN3

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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