The histone methyltransferase SETD2 negatively regulates cell size.


Cell size varies between cell types but is tightly regulated by cell intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms. Cell size control is important for cell function, and changes in cell size are frequently observed in cancer. Here, we uncover a role for SETD2 in regulating cell size. SETD2 is a lysine methyltransferase and a tumor suppressor protein involved in transcription, RNA processing and DNA repair. At the molecular level, SETD2 is best known for associating with RNA polymerase II through its Set2-Rbp1 interacting (SRI) domain and methylating histone H3 on lysine 36 (H3K36) during transcription. Using multiple independent perturbation strategies, we identify SETD2 as a negative regulator of global protein synthesis rates and cell size. We provide evidence that overexpression of the H3K36 demethylase KDM4A or the oncohistone H3.3K36M also increase cell size. In addition, ectopic overexpression of a decoy SRI domain increased cell size, suggesting that the relevant substrate is engaged by SETD2 via its SRI domain. These data add a central role of SETD2 in regulating cellular physiology and warrant further studies on separating the different functions of SETD2 in cancer development.

More about this publication

Journal of cell science
  • Volume 135
  • Issue nr. 19
  • Publication date 01-10-2022

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