OR2AT4, an Ectopic Olfactory Receptor, Suppresses Oxidative Stress-Induced Senescence in Human Keratinocytes

Ji Sun Kim, Ha Lim Lee, Ji Hyun Jeong, Ye Eun Yoon, In Ryeong Lee, Ji Min Kim, Chunyan Wu, Sung Joon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Olfactory receptors (ORs) are the largest protein superfamily in mammals. Certain ORs are ectopically expressed in extranasal tissues and regulate cell type-specific signal transduction pathways. OR2AT4 is ectopically expressed in skin cells and promotes wound healing and hair growth. As the capacities of wound healing and hair growth decline with aging, we investigated the role of OR2AT4 in the aging and senescence of human keratinocytes. OR2AT4 was functionally expressed in human keratinocytes (HaCaT) and exhibited co-expression with G-protein-coupled receptor signaling components, Golfα and adenylate cyclase 3. The OR2AT4 ligand sandalore modulates the intracellular calcium, inositol phosphate, and cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels. The increased calcium level induced by sandalore was attenuated in cells with OR2AT4 knockdown. OR2AT4 activation by sandalore inhibited the senescent cell phenotypes and restored cell proliferation and Ki-67 expression. Sandalore also inhibited the expression of senescence-associated β-galactosidase and increased p21 expression in senescent HaCaT cells in response to hydrogen peroxide. Additionally, sandalore activated the CaMKKβ/AMPK/mTORC1/autophagy signaling axis and promoted autophagy. OR2AT4 knockdown attenuated the increased in the intracellular calcium level, cell proliferation, and AMPK phosphorylation induced by sandalore. These findings demonstrate that the effects of sandalore are mediated by OR2AT4 activation. Our findings suggest that OR2AT4 may be a novel therapeutic target for anti-aging and anti-senescence in human keratinocytes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2180
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Nov

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIT) (no. 2019R1A2C3005227). This research was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (no. 2022R1I1A1A01071427). This research was supported by a Korea University Grant.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors.


  • CaMKKβ/AMPK/mTORC1/autophagy signaling
  • OR2AT4
  • human keratinocytes
  • olfactory receptor
  • sandalore
  • senescence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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