Confirmation of high-throughput screening data and novel mechanistic insights into VDR-xenobiotic interactions by orthogonal assays
Debabrata Mahapatra, Jill A Franzosa, Kyle Roell, Melaine Agnes Kuenemann, Keith A Houck, David M Reif, Denis Fourches, Seth W Kullman
High throughput screening (HTS) programs have demonstrated that the Vitamin D receptor (VDR) is activated and/or antagonized by a wide range of structurally diverse chemicals. In this study, we examined the Tox21 qHTS data set generated against VDR for reproducibility and concordance and elucidated functional insights into VDR-xenobiotic interactions. Twenty-one potential VDR agonists and 19 VDR antagonists were identified from a subset of >400 compounds with putative VDR activity and examined for VDR functionality utilizing select orthogonal assays. Transient transactivation assay (TT) using a human VDR plasmid and Cyp24 luciferase reporter construct revealed 20/21 active VDR agonists and 18/19 active VDR antagonists. Mammalian-2-hybrid assay (M2H) was then used to evaluate VDR interactions with co-activators and co-regulators. With the exception of a select few compounds, VDR agonists exhibited significant recruitment of co-regulators and co-activators whereas antagonists exhibited considerable attenuation of recruitment by VDR. A unique set of compounds exhibiting synergistic activity in antagonist mode and no activity in agonist mode was identified. Cheminformatics modeling of VDR-ligand interactions were conducted and revealed selective ligand VDR interaction. Overall, data emphasizes the molecular complexity of ligand-mediated interactions with VDR and suggest that VDR transactivation may be a target site of action for diverse xenobiotics.