Transforming Growth Factor-β Repression of Matrix Metalloproteinase-1 in Dermal Fibroblasts Involves Smad3

Weihua Yuan, John Varga*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

228 Scopus citations


Enhanced production of matrix metalloproteinase-1 (MMP-1, collagenase-1) is implicated in pathological tissue destruction. Transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) prevents cytokine-induced MMP-1 gene expression in fibroblasts. In these studies, we examined the hypothesis that repression of MMP-1 may be mediated through the Smad signaling pathway. The results showed that Smad3 and Smad4, but not Smad1 or Smad2, mimicked the inhibitory effect of TGF-β and abrogated interleukin-1β (IL-1β)-induced stimulation of MMP-1 promoter activity and NFκB-specific gene transcription in dermal fibroblasts. Experiments with truncation mutants indicated that both MH1 and MH2 domains of Smad3 were necessary for inhibitory activity. Dominant negative mutants of Smad3 or Smad4 and antagonistic Smad7, which disrupts ligand-induced Smad3 phosphorylation, abrogated the repression of MMP-1 transcription by TGF-β. Similar results were obtained using immunoblot and Northern analysis. Furthermore, TGF-β failed to repress MMP-1 promoter activity in Smad3-deficient murine embryonic fibroblasts. These results implicated cellular Smads in mediating the inhibitory effects of TGF-β. Overexpression of the transcriptional co-activator p300, but not its histone acetyltransferase (HAT)-deficient mutant, was able to relieve repression of MMP-1 gene expression, suggesting that Smad-dependent inhibition may be due to increased competition between Smad proteins and IL-1β signaling pathways for limiting amounts of cellular p300. Together, these results demonstrate that MMP-1 is a target for negative regulation by TGF-β through cellular Smad3 and Smad4. Smad-mediated repression of MMP-1 gene expression may be important for preventing excessive matrix degradation induced by inflammatory cytokines; disruption of Smad signaling, as occurs in certain cancer cells, may thus be causally linked to uncontrolled tissue destruction mediated through MMP-1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38502-38510
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number42
StatePublished - Oct 19 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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