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Gene Review

Sat1  -  spermidine/spermine N1-acetyl transferase 1

Mus musculus

Synonyms: AA617398, Diamine acetyltransferase 1, Polyamine N-acetyltransferase 1, Putrescine acetyltransferase, SSAT, ...
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Disease relevance of Sat1

  • In attempts to clarify the function of SSAT in tumour development, we have utilized the Apc(Min/+) mouse, which carries a mutant allele of the Apc (adenomatous polyposis coli) gene, rendering it susceptible to the formation of multiple adenomas in the small intestine and colon [1].
  • In contrast, the combination of N(1), N(11)-diethylnorspermine with MDL72527 dramatically activated SSAT, causing profound depletion of pancreatic polyamines and acute pancreatitis [2].
  • Overall, the findings reveal meaningful antitumor activity by BENSPM against 2 human melanoma xenografts and provide in vivo evidence consistent with SSAT-induced polyamine depletion playing a determining role in at least the initial phase of the antitumor response [3].
  • Although most polyamine-based anticancer strategies target biosynthesis, we recently showed that activation of polyamine catabolism at the level of spermidine/spermine N(1)-acetyltransferase-1 (SSAT) suppresses tumor outgrowth in a mouse prostate cancer model [4].
  • The finding that deletion of SSAT reduces tumorigenesis suggests that small-molecule inhibition of the enzyme may represent a nontoxic prevention and/or treatment strategy for gastrointestinal cancers [4].

High impact information on Sat1

  • Using yeast two-hybrid screening, we identified the polyamine catabolizing enzyme spermidine/spermine N(1)-acetyltransferase (SSAT) as a specific binding partner of the alpha9 cytoplasmic domain [5].
  • Overexpression of SSAT increased alpha9beta1-mediated migration, and small interfering RNA knockdown of SSAT inhibited this migration without affecting cell adhesion or migration that was mediated by other integrin cytoplasmic domains [5].
  • Administration of zinc resulted in a marked induction of pancreatic SSAT, overaccumulation of putrescine, and appearance of N(1)-acetylspermidine with extensive depletion of spermidine and spermine in transgenic animals [2].
  • Induction of SSAT by the polyamine analogue N(1),N(11)-diethylnorspermine reduced pancreatic polyamines levels only moderately and without signs of organ inflammation [2].
  • To investigate the physiological function SSAT, we generated a transgenic rat line overexpressing the SSAT gene under the control of the inducible mouse metallothionein I promoter [2].

Chemical compound and disease context of Sat1


Biological context of Sat1


Anatomical context of Sat1


Associations of Sat1 with chemical compounds

  • In comparison with singly transgenic animals overexpressing SSAT, the doubly transgenic mice unexpectedly displayed much more striking signs of activated polyamine catabolism, as exemplified by a massive putrescine accumulation and an extreme reduction of hepatic spermidine and spermine pools [17].
  • Testosterone treatment enhanced AZ1 and N1-SSAT mRNA levels in a time-dependent manner by unknown molecular mechanisms [11].
  • In particular, the polyamine catabolic enzyme SSAT (spermidine/spermine N(1)-acetyltransferase) seems to have different roles in tumorigenesis, depending upon the particular system being analysed [1].
  • The latter led to heightened metabolic flux through the polyamine pathway and an associated approximately 70% reduction in the SSAT cofactor acetyl-CoA and a approximately 40% reduction in the polyamine aminopropyl donor S-adenosylmethionine in TRAMP/SSAT compared with TRAMP prostatic tissue [6].
  • In situ hybridization histochemistry experiments showed that the SSAT transcript is expressed only by the epithelial cells of the straight and convoluted distal tubules of the nephron, while the expression of the ODC transcript is confined to the epithelium of the convoluted and straight portion of the proximal tubules [18].

Other interactions of Sat1

  • The expression of AZ1 and N1-SSAT mRNA was similar in male and female mouse kidneys [11].
  • The data further suggest that SSAT may play a role in the initiation of injury, whereas p21 and stathmin may be involved in the resolution and recovery after liver IRI [16].
  • Overexpression of SSAT (polyamine catabolic enzyme) in female mice results in impaired ovarian folliculogenesis and uterine hypoplasia [19].
  • The biological tolerance for these compounds was tested in wild-type mice and transgenic mice carrying the metallothionein promoter-driven spermidine/spermine N(1)-acetyltransferase gene (MT-SSAT) [20].
  • Catecholamine depletion evoked by reserpine drastically decreases the folate-induced activity of S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase (AdoMetDC), which limits polyamine biosynthesis, but has no effect on SSAT activity augmented by CB 3717 [9].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of Sat1

  • In situ hybridization analyses revealed a marked overexpression of SSAT-specific mRNA all over the brain tissue of the transgenic animals [8].
  • Castration of male mice for 7 days resulted in a 40% decrease of the renal levels of both SSAT and ODC transcripts [18].
  • Northern blots demonstrated that the mRNA levels of SSAT are increased by greater than threefold in the renal cortex and by fivefold in the renal medulla at 12 h and returned to baseline at 48 h after ischemia [21].
  • The concentration of putrescine in the kidney increased by approximately 4- and approximately 7.5-fold at 12 and 24 h of reperfusion, respectively, consistent with increased functional activity of SSAT [21].
  • SSAT expression was found throughout normal kidney tubules, as detected by nephron segment RT-PCR [21].


  1. Polyamine metabolism and tumorigenesis in the Apc(Min/+) mouse. Berger, F.G., Kramer, D.L., Porter, C.W. Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2007) [Pubmed]
  2. Activation of polyamine catabolism in transgenic rats induces acute pancreatitis. Alhonen, L., Parkkinen, J.J., Keinanen, T., Sinervirta, R., Herzig, K.H., Jänne, J. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. (2000) [Pubmed]
  3. Antitumor activity of N1,N11-bis(ethyl)norspermine against human melanoma xenografts and possible biochemical correlates of drug action. Porter, C.W., Bernacki, R.J., Miller, J., Bergeron, R.J. Cancer Res. (1993) [Pubmed]
  4. Potent modulation of intestinal tumorigenesis in Apcmin/+ mice by the polyamine catabolic enzyme spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase. Tucker, J.M., Murphy, J.T., Kisiel, N., Diegelman, P., Barbour, K.W., Davis, C., Medda, M., Alhonen, L., Jänne, J., Kramer, D.L., Porter, C.W., Berger, F.G. Cancer Res. (2005) [Pubmed]
  5. Spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase specifically binds to the integrin alpha9 subunit cytoplasmic domain and enhances cell migration. Chen, C., Young, B.A., Coleman, C.S., Pegg, A.E., Sheppard, D. J. Cell Biol. (2004) [Pubmed]
  6. Activated polyamine catabolism depletes acetyl-CoA pools and suppresses prostate tumor growth in TRAMP mice. Kee, K., Foster, B.A., Merali, S., Kramer, D.L., Hensen, M.L., Diegelman, P., Kisiel, N., Vujcic, S., Mazurchuk, R.V., Porter, C.W. J. Biol. Chem. (2004) [Pubmed]
  7. Transgenic mice with activated polyamine catabolism due to overexpression of spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase show enhanced sensitivity to the polyamine analog, N1, N11-diethylnorspermine. Alhonen, L., Pietilä, M., Halmekytö, M., Kramer, D.L., Jänne, J., Porter, C.W. Mol. Pharmacol. (1999) [Pubmed]
  8. Overexpression of spermidine/spermine N-acetyltransferase in transgenic mice protects the animals from kainate-induced toxicity. Kaasinen, K., Koistinaho, J., Alhonen, L., Jänne, J. Eur. J. Neurosci. (2000) [Pubmed]
  9. Up-regulation of spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT) expression is a part of proliferative but not anabolic response of mouse kidney. Dudkowska, M., Stachurska, A., Grzelakowska-Sztabert, B., Manteuffel-Cymborowska, M. Acta Biochim. Pol. (2002) [Pubmed]
  10. Polyamines are required for the initiation of rat liver regeneration. Alhonen, L., Räsänen, T.L., Sinervirta, R., Parkkinen, J.J., Korhonen, V.P., Pietilä, M., Jänne, J. Biochem. J. (2002) [Pubmed]
  11. Influence of testosterone on regulation of ODC, antizyme, and N1-SSAT gene expression in mouse kidney. Levillain, O., Greco, A., Diaz, J.J., Augier, R., Didier, A., Kindbeiter, K., Catez, F., Cayre, M. Am. J. Physiol. Renal Physiol. (2003) [Pubmed]
  12. The X chromosome deletion in HYP mice extends into the intergenic region but does not include the SAT gene downstream from Phex. Sabbagh, Y., Gauthier, C., Tenenhouse, H.S. Cytogenet. Genome Res. (2002) [Pubmed]
  13. Correlation of polyamine and growth responses to N1,N11-diethylnorspermine in primary fetal fibroblasts derived from transgenic mice overexpressing spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase. Alhonen, L., Karppinen, A., Uusi-Oukari, M., Vujcic, S., Korhonen, V.P., Halmekytö, M., Kramer, D.L., Hines, R., Jänne, J., Porter, C.W. J. Biol. Chem. (1998) [Pubmed]
  14. Targeted disruption of spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase gene in mouse embryonic stem cells. Effects on polyamine homeostasis and sensitivity to polyamine analogues. Niiranen, K., Pietilä, M., Pirttilä, T.J., Järvinen, A., Halmekytö, M., Korhonen, V.P., Keinänen, T.A., Alhonen, L., Jänne, J. J. Biol. Chem. (2002) [Pubmed]
  15. Disturbed keratinocyte differentiation in transgenic mice and organotypic keratinocyte cultures as a result of spermidine/spermine N-acetyltransferase overexpression. Pietilä, M., Pirinen, E., Keskitalo, S., Juutinen, S., Pasonen-Seppänen, S., Keinänen, T., Alhonen, L., Jänne, J. J. Invest. Dermatol. (2005) [Pubmed]
  16. Distinct and sequential upregulation of genes regulating cell growth and cell cycle progression during hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury. Barone, S., Okaya, T., Rudich, S., Petrovic, S., Tenrani, K., Wang, Z., Zahedi, K., Casero, R.A., Lentsch, A.B., Soleimani, M. Am. J. Physiol., Cell Physiol. (2005) [Pubmed]
  17. Concurrent overexpression of ornithine decarboxylase and spermidine/spermine N(1)-acetyltransferase further accelerates the catabolism of hepatic polyamines in transgenic mice. Suppola, S., Heikkinen, S., Parkkinen, J.J., Uusi-Oukari, M., Korhonen, V.P., Keinänen, T., Alhonen, L., Jänne, J. Biochem. J. (2001) [Pubmed]
  18. Androgen responsiveness and intrarenal localization of transcripts coding for the enzymes of polyamine metabolism in the mouse. Bettuzzi, S., Strocchi, P., Davalli, P., Marinelli, M., Furci, L., Corti, A. Biochem. Cell Biol. (2001) [Pubmed]
  19. Altered levels of growth-related and novel gene transcripts in reproductive and other tissues of female mice overexpressing spermidine/spermine N1-acetyltransferase (SSAT). Min, S.H., Simmen, R.C., Alhonen, L., Halmekyto, M., Porter, C.W., Janne, J., Simmen, F.A. J. Biol. Chem. (2002) [Pubmed]
  20. Alpha-methyl polyamines: efficient synthesis and tolerance studies in vivo and in vitro. First evidence for dormant stereospecificity of polyamine oxidase. Järvinen, A.J., Cerrada-Gimenez, M., Grigorenko, N.A., Khomutov, A.R., Vepsäläinen, J.J., Sinervirta, R.M., Keinänen, T.A., Alhonen, L.I., Jänne, J.E. J. Med. Chem. (2006) [Pubmed]
  21. Expression of SSAT, a novel biomarker of tubular cell damage, increases in kidney ischemia-reperfusion injury. Zahedi, K., Wang, Z., Barone, S., Prada, A.E., Kelly, C.N., Casero, R.A., Yokota, N., Porter, C.W., Rabb, H., Soleimani, M. Am. J. Physiol. Renal Physiol. (2003) [Pubmed]
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