Genome-wide platforms for high-throughput profiling of circulating miRNA (oligoarray or miR-Seq) offer enormous promise for agnostic discovery of circulating miRNA biomarkers as a pathway for development in breast cancer detection. By harmonizing data from 15 previous reports, we found widespread inconsistencies across prior studies. Whether this arises from differences in study design, such as sample source or profiling platform, is unclear. As a reproducibility experiment, we generated a genome-wide plasma miRNA dataset using the Illumina oligoarray and compared this to a publically available dataset generated using an identical sample size, substrate and profiling platform. Samples from 20 breast cancer patients, 20 mammography-screened controls, as well as 20 breast cancer patients after surgical resection and 10 female lung or colorectal cancer patients were included. After filtering for miRNAs derived from blood cells, and for low abundance miRNAs (non-detectable in over 10% of samples), a set of 522 plasma miRNAs remained, of which 46 were found to be differentially expressed between breast cancer patients and healthy controls (p<0.05), of which only 3 normalized to baseline levels in post-resection cases and were unique to breast cancer vs. lung or colorectal cancer (miR-708*, miR-92b* and miR-568, none previously reported). We were unable to demonstrate reproducibility by various measures between the two datasets. This finding, along with widespread inconsistencies across prior studies, highlight the need for better understanding of factors influencing circulating miRNA levels as prerequisites to progress in this area of translational research.
Non-invasive early detection of lung cancer could reduce the number of patients diagnosed with advanced disease, which is associated with a poor prognosis. We analyzed the diagnostic accuracy of a panel of peripheral blood markers in detecting non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
100 healthy donors and 100 patients with NSCLC were enrolled onto this study. Free circulating DNA, circulating mRNA expression of peptidylarginine deiminase type 4 (PAD4/PADI4), pro-platelet basic protein (PPBP) and haptoglobin were evaluated using a Real-Time PCR-based method.
Free circulating DNA, PADI4, PPBP and haptoglobin levels were significantly higher in NSCLC patients than in healthy donors (p<0.0001, p<0.0001, p = 0.0002 and p = 0.0001, respectively). The fitted logistic regression model demonstrated a significant direct association between marker expression and lung cancer risk. The odds ratios of individual markers were 6.93 (95% CI 4.15–11.58; p<0.0001) for free DNA, 6.99 (95% CI 3.75–13.03; p<0.0001) for PADI4, 2.85 (95% CI 1.71–4.75; p<0.0001) for PPBP and 1.16 (95% CI 1.01–1.33; p = 0.031) for haptoglobin. Free DNA in combination with PPBP and PADI4 gave an area under the ROC curve of 0.93, 95% CI = 0.90–0.97, with sensitivity and specificity over 90%.
Free circulating DNA analysis combined with PPBP and PADI4 expression determination appears to accurately discriminate between healthy donors and NSCLC patients. This non-invasive multimarker approach warrants further research to assess its potential role in the diagnostic or screening workup of subjects with suspected lung cancer.
The role of microRNAs (miRNAs), important post-transcriptional regulators, in the pathogenesis of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is just emerging and has been mainly studied in adults. First studies in children investigate single selected miRNAs, however, a comprehensive overview of miRNA expression and function in children and young adults is missing so far.
We here globally identified differentially expressed miRNAs between AML subtypes in a survey of 102 children and adolescent. Pediatric samples with core-binding factor AML and promyelocytic leukemia could be distinguished from each other and from MLL-rearranged AML subtypes by differentially expressed miRNAs including miR-126, -146a, -181a/b, -100, and miR-125b. Subsequently, we established a newly devised immunoprecipitation assay followed by rapid microarray detection for the isolation of Argonaute proteins, the hallmark of miRNA targeting complexes, from cell line models resembling core-binding factor and promyelocytic leukemia. Applying this method, we were able to identify Ago-associated miRNAs and their targeted mRNAs.
miRNAs as well as their mRNA-targets showed binding preferences for the different Argonaute proteins in a cell context-dependent manner. Bioinformatically-derived pathway analysis suggested a concerted action of all four Argonaute complexes in the regulation of AML-relevant pathways. For the first time, to our knowledge, a complete AML data set resulting from carefully devised biochemical isolation experiments and analysis of Ago-associated miRNAs and their target-mRNAs is now available.
The diagnosis of non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) at an early stage, as well as better prediction of outcome remains clinically challenging due to the lack of specific and robust non-invasive markers. The discovery of microRNAs (miRNAs), particularly those found in the bloodstream, has opened up new perspectives for tumor diagnosis and prognosis. The aim of our study was to determine whether expression profiles of specific miRNAs in plasma could accurately discriminate between NSCLC patients and controls, and whether they are able to predict the prognosis of resectable NSCLC patients. We therefore evaluated a series of seventeen NSCLC-related miRNAs by quantitative real-time (qRT)-PCR in plasma from 52 patients with I-IIIA stages NSCLC, 10 patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and 20-age, sex and smoking status-matched healthy individuals. We identified an eleven-plasma miRNA panel that could distinguish NSCLC patients from healthy subjects (AUC = 0.879). A six-plasma miRNA panel was able to discriminate between NSCLC patients and COPD patients (AUC = 0.944). Furthermore, we identified a three-miRNA plasma signature (high miR-155-5p, high miR-223-3p, and low miR-126-3p) that significantly associated with a higher risk for progression in adenocarcinoma patients. In addition, a three-miRNA plasma panel (high miR-20a-5p, low miR-152-3p, and low miR-199a-5p) significantly predicted survival of squamous cell carcinoma patients. In conclusion, we identified two plasma miRNA expression profiles that may be useful for predicting the outcome of patients with resectable NSCLC.
FOXP3+ regulatory T cells (Treg) play an essential role in modulating host responses to tumors and infections. The role of these cells in the pathogenesis of MALT lymphomas remains unknown. The aims of the study were to quantify the number of infiltrating FOXP3+ and CD3+ cells in patients with gastric MALT lymphoma at diagnosis and to study kinetics of these cells and CD20+ tumor cells after treatment and during long-term follow-up.
FOXP3+, CD3+ and CD20+ cells were analyzed by immunohistochemistry and the number of cells was quantified using a micrometric ocular. Samples of 35 patients with gastric MALT lymphoma at diagnosis and after treatment were included. Diagnostic samples were compared to 19 cases of chronic gastritis and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) of the stomach.
The median number of FOXP3+ infiltrating cells was higher (27 cells/cm2) in gastric MALT patients than in DLBCL (10 cells; p = 0.162) but similar to chronic gastritis (20 cells; p = 0.605). No characteristic or specific distribution pattern of infiltrating FOXP3+ cells was found. Gastric MALT lymphoma patients responding to bacterial eradication therapy had higher number of FOXP3+ cells at study entry. Kinetics of both infiltrating FOXP3+ cells and tumor CD20+ cells were strongly dependent on the treatment administered.
Gastric MALT lymphomas have a number of Treg cells more similar to chronic gastritis than to DLBCL. Patients with higher number of tumor infiltrating FOXP3+ cells at study entry seem to have better response to antibiotics. Kinetics of Treg and tumor cells are influenced by type of treatment.
B-cell activation factor (BAFF) and BAFF-receptor (BAFF-R) play crucial roles in the viability and proliferation of malignant lymphoma cells. Limited information exists regarding expression profiles and the prognostic role of BAFF and BAFF-R in follicular lymphoma (FL). We sought to determine the expression profiles of BAFF and BAFF-R in FL and to evaluate the correlation of BAFF and BAFF-R expression with clinicopathologic characteristics and outcome of FL. Correlation between expression levels of BAFF detected by immunohistochemical (IHC) and serum levels of BAFF was also evaluated.
Paraffin-embedded specimens from 115 patients were immunohistochemically examined for BAFF and BAFF-R expression. Expression levels were dichotomized into low versus high categories based on immunostaining intensity. The correlation of BAFF and BAFF-R expression with clinicopathologic characteristics and patient outcome was assessed. Serum levels of BAFF in 35 of the 115 patients with IHC data were measured by Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
BAFF and BAFF-R were expressed in 88.7% (102/115) and 87.8% (101/115) of the cases, respectively. BAFF expression was significantly correlated with only one clinicopathologic feature: Ann Arbor stage. No significant correlation was found between expression levels of BAFF detected by IHC and serum levels of BAFF detected by ELISA. High expression of BAFF-R, but not BAFF, was significantly correlated with inferior progression-free survival (PFS; P = 0.013) and overall survival (OS; P = 0.03). High expression of BAFF-R, bulky disease, and elevated lactate dehydrogenase were correlated with inferior PFS and OS in multivariate analysis. A prognostic scoring system incorporating these 3 risk factors identified 3 distinct prognostic groups with 5-year PFS of 59.4%, 41.9%, and 10.7% and OS of 91.3%, 79.7%, and 45.8%, respectively.
Most patients with FL variably express BAFF and BAFF-R. High expression of BAFF-R, but not BAFF, may be an independent risk factor for PFS and OS in FL.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play key roles in diverse biological and pathological processes, including the regulation of proliferation, apoptosis, angiogenesis and cellular differentiation. Recently, circulating miRNAs have been reported as potential biomarkers for various pathologic conditions. This study investigated miR-30a, miR-195 and let-7b as potential of biomarker for acute myocardial infarction (AMI).
Methods and Results
Plasma samples from 18 patients with AMI and 30 healthy adults were collected. Total RNA was extracted from plasma with TRIzol LS Reagent. MiRNA levels and plasma cardiac troponin I (cTnI) concentrations were measured by quantitative real-time PCR and ELISA assay, respectively. Results showed that circulating miR-30a in AMI patients was highly expressed at 4 h, 8 h and 12 h after onset of AMI, and miR-195 was highly expressed at 8 h and 12 h. However, let-7b was lower in AMI patients than in controls throughout the whole time points. Interestingly, in these patients, circulating miR-30a, miR-195 and let-7b all reached their expression peak at 8 h. By the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analyses, these plasma miRNAs were of significant diagnostic value for AMI. The combined ROC analysis revealed the an AUC value of 0.93 with 94% sensitivity and 90% specificity at 8 h after onset, and an AUC value of 0.92 with 90% sensitivity and 90% specificity at 12 h after onset, in discriminating the AMI patients from healthy controls.
Our results imply that the plasma concentration of miR-30a, miR-195 and let-7b can be potential indicators for AMI.
Accumulating evidence suggest that numerous microRNAs (miRNAs) play important roles in cell proliferation, apoptosis, and differentiation, as well as various diseases that accompany inflammatory responses. Inflammation is known to be a major contributor to atherogenesis. Previous studies provide promising evidence in support of the role of miRNAs in cardiovascular disease. However, mechanistic data on these small molecules in atherosclerosis (AS) are still missing. The present study aims to investigate the potential role of miRNAs in AS.
Methods and Results
The miRNA transcriptase was verified by TaqMan real-time polymerase chain reaction assay. Thoracic aorta samples were obtained from Apolipoprotein E knockout mice, and plasma samples were from coronary artery disease (CAD) patients. The results showed that the miR-155 level was the most significantly elevated both in AS mice and CAD patients relative to the normal control. The functional role of miR-155 in the atherosclerotic path physiological process was also observed in vivo and in vitro. The observations suggested that miR-155 is a part of a negative feedback loop, which down-modulates inflammatory cytokine production and decreases AS progression. miR-155 was also found to mediate the inflammatory response and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway by targeting mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase 10.
miR-155 contributes to the prevention of AS development and progression. It may also be involved in the posttranscriptional regulation of the inflammatory response and MAPK pathway by targeting mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase 10.
It is well known that many patients continue to smoke cigarettes after being diagnosed with cancer. Although smoking cessation has typically been presumed to possess little therapeutic value for cancer, a growing body of evidence suggests that continued smoking is associated with reduced efficacy of treatment and a higher incidence of recurrence. We therefore investigated the effect of cigarette smoke condensate (CSC) on drug resistance in the lung cancer and head and neck cancer cell lines A549 and UMSCC-10B, respectively. Our results showed that CSC significantly increased the cellular efflux of doxorubicin and mitoxantrone. This was accompanied by membrane localization and increased expression of the multi-drug transporter ABCG2. The induced efflux of doxorubicin was reversed upon addition of the specific ABCG2 inhibitor Fumitremorgin C, confirming the role of ABCG2. Treatment with CSC increased the concentration of phosphorylated Akt, while addition of the PI3K inhibitor LY294002 blocked doxorubicin extrusion, suggesting that Akt activation is required for CSC-induced drug efflux. In addition, CSC was found to promote resistance to doxorubicin as determined by MTS assays. This CSC-induced doxurbicin-resistance was mitigated by mecamylamine, a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor inhibitor, suggesting that nicotine is at least partially responsible for the effect of CSC. Lastly, CSC increased the size of the side population (SP), which has been linked to a cancer stem cell-like phenotype. In summary, CSC promotes chemoresistance via Akt-mediated regulation of ABCG2 activity, and may also increase the proportion of cancer stem-like cells, contributing to tumor resilience. These findings underscore the importance of smoking cessation following a diagnosis of cancer, and elucidate the mechanisms of continued smoking that may be detrimental to treatment.
Development of robust prognostic and/or predictive biomarkers in patients with colorectal cancer (CRC) is imperative for advancing treatment strategies for this disease. We aimed to determine whether expression status of certain miRNAs might have prognostic/predictive value in CRC patients treated with conventional cytotoxic chemotherapies.
We studied a cohort of 273 CRC specimens from stage II/III patients treated with 5-fluorouracil-based adjuvant chemotherapy and stage IV patients subjected to 5-fluorouracil and oxaliplatin-based chemotherapy. In a screening set (n = 44), 13 of 21 candidate miRNAs were successfully quantified by multiplex quantitative RT-PCR. In the validation set comprising of the entire patient cohort, miR-148a expression status was assessed by quantitative RT-PCR, and its promoter methylation was quantified by bisulfite pyrosequencing. Lastly, we analyzed the associations between miR-148a expression and patient survival.
Among the candidate miRNAs studied, miR-148a expression was most significantly down-regulated in advanced CRC tissues. In stage III and IV CRC, low miR-148a expression was associated with significantly shorter disease free-survival (DFS), a worse therapeutic response, and poor overall survival (OS). Furthermore, miR-148a methylation status correlated inversely with its expression, and was associated with worse survival in stage IV CRC. In multivariate analysis, miR-148a expression was an independent prognostic/predictive biomarker for advanced CRC patients (DFS in stage III, low vs. high expression, HR 2.11; OS in stage IV, HR 1.93).
MiR-148a status has a prognostic/predictive value in advanced CRC patients treated with conventional chemotherapy, which has important clinical implications in improving therapeutic strategies and personalized management of this malignancy.
Somatic mutations of U2AF1 gene have recently been identified in myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). In this study, we analyzed the frequency and clinical impact of U2AF1 mutations in a cohort of 452 Chinese patients with myeloid neoplasms. Mutations in U2AF1 were found in 2.5% (7/275) of AML and 6.3% (6/96) of MDS patients, but in none of 81 CML. All mutations were heterozygous missense mutations affecting codon S34 or Q157. There was no significant association of U2AF1 mutation with blood parameters, FAB subtypes, karyotypes and other gene mutations in AML. The overall survival (OS) of AML patients with U2AF1 mutation (median 3 months) was shorter than those without mutation (median 7 months) (P = 0.035). No difference in the OS was observed between MDS patients with and without U2AF1 mutations. Our data show that U2AF1 mutation is a recurrent event at a low frequency in AML and MDS.
Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are clonal stem cell disorders which frequently show a hypercellular dysplastic bone marrow (BM) associated with inefficient hematopoiesis and peripheral cytopenias due to increased apoptosis and maturation blockades. Currently, little is known about the role of cell proliferation in compensating for the BM failure syndrome and in determining patient outcome. Here, we analyzed the proliferation index (PI) of different compartments of BM hematopoietic cells in 106 MDS patients compared to both normal/reactive BM (n = 94) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML; n = 30 cases) using multiparameter flow cytometry. Our results show abnormally increased overall BM proliferation profiles in MDS which significantly differ between early/low-risk and advanced/high-risk cases. Early/low-risk patients showed increased proliferation of non-lymphoid CD34+ precursors, maturing neutrophils and nucleated red blood cells (NRBC), while the PI of these compartments of BM precursors progressively fell below normal values towards AML levels in advanced/high-risk MDS. Decreased proliferation of non-lymphoid CD34+ and NRBC precursors was significantly associated with adverse disease features, shorter overall survival (OS) and transformation to AML, both in the whole series and when low- and high-risk MDS patients were separately considered, the PI of NRBC emerging as the most powerful independent predictor for OS and progression to AML. In conclusion, assessment of the PI of NRBC, and potentially also of other compartments of BM precursors (e.g.: myeloid CD34+ HPC), could significantly contribute to a better management of MDS.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs), which regulate biological processes by annealing to the 3′-untranslated region (3′-UTR) of mRNAs to reduce protein synthesis, have been the subject of recent attention as a key regulatory factor in cell differentiation. The effects of some miRNAs during osteoblastic differentiation have been investigated in mesenchymal stem cells, however they still remains to be determined in pluripotent stem cells.
Bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs) are potent activators of osteoblastic differentiation. In the present study, we profiled miRNAs during osteoblastic differentiation of mouse induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells by BMP-4, in which expression of important osteoblastic markers such as Rux2, osterix, osteopontin, osteocalcin, PTHR1 and RANKL were significantly increased. A miRNA array analysis revealed that six miRNAs including miR-10a, miR-10b, miR-19b, miR-9-3p, miR-124a and miR-181a were significantly downregulated. Interestingly, miR-124a and miR-181a directly target the transcription factors Dlx5 and Msx2, both of which were increased by about 80-and 30-fold, respectively. In addition, transfection of miR-124a and miR-181a into mouse osteo-progenitor MC3T3-E1 cells significantly reduced expression of Dlx5, Runx2, osteocalcin and ALP, and Msx2 and osteocalcin, respectively. Finally, transfection of the anti-miRNAs of these six miRNAs, which are predicted to target Dlx5 and Msx2, into mouse iPS cells resulted in a significant increase in several osteoblastic differentiation markers such as Rux2, Msx2 and osteopontin.
In the present study, we demonstrate that six miRNAs including miR-10a, miR-10b, miR-19b, miR-9-3p, miR-124a and miR-181a miRNAs, especially miR-124a and miR-181a, are important regulatory factors in osteoblastic differentiation of mouse iPS cells.
Several studies have shown the prognostic and predictive potential of molecular markers in combined therapy for lung cancer. Most of them referred, however, to operable early stage NSCLC. The aim of the present study is to correlate the expression of multiple mRNA markers in bronchoscopy obtained cancer specimens with clinical outcome of advanced lung cancer.
Bronchoscopy cancer specimens were taken from 123 patients with radiological diagnosis of advanced lung tumor. Out of 123 patients 50 were diagnosed with squamous cell cancer, 17 with adenocarcinoma, 12 with NOS, 32 with SCLC and one with large cell neuroendocrinal cancer. In 11 patients other tumours were diagnosed. The group was heterogeneous with respect to clinical stage, performance of the patients and treatment. Quantitative real time PCR was carried out by ABI 7900 HT machine, with Universal Probe Library (Roche) fluorescent probes. The genes selected for the analysis were ERCC1, EGFR, BRCA1, CSF1, CA9, DUSP6, STAT1, ERBB3, MMD, FN1, and CDKN1B.
More than 50 ng of RNA (the amount considered sufficient for the analysis) was isolated in 82 out of 112 lung cancer specimens (73%), including 60/80 (75.0%) of NSCLC specimens and 22/32 (68,7%) of SCLC samples. The highest Cohen’s κ coefficient for discrimination between small cell, squamous cell and adenocarcinoma was found for CDKN1B, CSF and EGFR1 (κ = 0.177, p = 0.0041). A multivariate Cox regression model has shown a significant impact of clinical stage (p<0.001, RR = 4.19), ERCC1 (p = 0.01, RR = 0.43) and CA9 (p = 0.03, RR = 2.11) expression on overall survival in a group of 60 patients with NSCLC.
These results show the feasibility of multiple gene expression analysis in bronchoscopy obtained cancer specimens as prognostic markers in radiotherapy and chemotherapy for advanced lung cancer. A limiting factor was relatively high proportion of samples from which sufficient amount of RNA could not be isolated.
The roles of microRNAs (miRNAs) as important regulators of gene expression have been studied intensively. Although most of these investigations have involved the highly expressed form of the two mature miRNA species, increasing evidence points to essential roles for star-form microRNAs (miRNA*), which are usually expressed at much lower levels. Owing to the nature of miRNA biogenesis, it is challenging to use plasmids containing miRNA coding sequences for gain-of-function experiments concerning the roles of microRNA* species. Synthetic microRNA mimics could introduce specific miRNA* species into cells, but this transient overexpression system has many shortcomings. Here, we report that specific miRNA* species can be overexpressed by introducing artificially designed stem-loop sequences into short hairpin RNA (shRNA) overexpression vectors. By our prototypic plasmid, designed to overexpress hsa-miR-146b-3p, we successfully expressed high levels of hsa-miR-146b-3p without detectable change of hsa-miR-146b-5p. Functional analysis involving luciferase reporter assays showed that, like natural miRNAs, the overexpressed hsa-miR-146b-3p inhibited target gene expression by 3′UTR seed pairing. Our demonstration that this method could overexpress two other miRNAs suggests that the approach should be broadly applicable. Our novel strategy opens the way for exclusively stable overexpression of miRNA* species and analyzing their unique functions both in vitro and in vivo.
Gastric cancer (GC) is one of the most common malignancy and primary cause of death in Chinese cancer patients. Recurrence is a major factor leading to treatment failure and low level of 5-year survival rate in GC patients following surgical resection. Therefore, identification of biomarkers with potential in predicting recurrence risk is the key problem of the prognosis in GC patients.
Patients and Methods
A total of 74 GC patients were selected for systematic analysis, consisting of 31 patients with recurrence and 43 patients without recurrence. Firstly, miRNAs microarray and bioinformatics methods were used to characterize differential expressed miRNAs from primary tumor samples. Following, we used a ROC method to select signature with best sensitivity and specificity. Finally, we validated the signature in GC samples (frozen fresh and blood samples) using quantitative PCR.
We have identified 12 differential miRNAs including 7 up-regulated and 5 down-regulated miRNAs in recurrence group. Using ROC method, we further ascertained hsa-miR-335 as a signature to recognize recurrence and non-recurrence cases in the training samples. Moreover, we validated this signature using quantitative PCR method in 64 test samples with consistent result with training set. A high frequency recurrence and poor survival were observed in GC cases with high level of hsa-miR-335 (P<0.001). In addition, we evaluated that hsa-miR-335 were involved in regulating target genes in several oncogenic signal-pathways, such as p53, MAPK, TGF-β, Wnt, ERbB, mTOR, Toll-like receptor and focal adhesion.
Our results indicate that the hsa-miR-335 has the potential to recognize the recurrence risk and relate to the prognosis of GC patients.
Despite of intense research in early cancer detection, there is a lack of biomarkers for the reliable detection of malignant tumors, including non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). DNA methylation changes are common and relatively stable in various types of cancers, and may be used as diagnostic or prognostic biomarkers.
We performed DNA methylation profiling of samples from 48 patients with stage I NSCLC and 18 matching cancer-free lung samples using microarrays that cover the promoter regions of more than 14,500 genes. We correlated DNA methylation changes with gene expression levels and performed survival analysis.
We observed hypermethylation of 496 CpGs in 379 genes and hypomethylation of 373 CpGs in 335 genes in NSCLC. Compared to adenocarcinoma samples, squamous cell carcinoma samples had 263 CpGs in 223 hypermethylated genes and 513 CpGs in 436 hypomethylated genes. 378 of 869 (43.5%) CpG sites discriminating the NSCLC and control samples showed an inverse correlation between CpG site methylation and gene expression levels. As a result of a survival analysis, we found 10 CpGs in 10 genes, in which the methylation level differs in different survival groups.
We have identified a set of genes with altered methylation in NSCLC and found that a minority of them showed an inverse correlation with gene expression levels. We also found a set of genes that associated with the survival of the patients. These newly-identified marker candidates for the molecular screening of NSCLC will need further analysis in order to determine their clinical utility.
In B-Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (B-CLL) kinase Lyn is overexpressed, active, abnormally distributed, and part of a cytosolic complex involving hematopoietic lineage cell-specific protein 1 (HS1). These aberrant properties of Lyn could partially explain leukemic cells’ defective apoptosis, directly or through its substrates, for example, HS1 that has been associated to apoptosis in different cell types. To verify the hypothesis of HS1 involvement in Lyn-mediated leukemic cell survival, we investigated HS1 protein in 71 untreated B-CLL patients and 26 healthy controls. We found HS1 overexpressed in leukemic as compared to normal B lymphocytes (1.38±0.54 vs 0.86±0.29, p<0.01), and when HS1 levels were correlated to clinical parameters we found a higher expression of HS1 in poor-prognosis patients. Moreover, HS1 levels significantly decreased in ex vivo leukemic cells of patients responding to a fludarabine-containing regimen. We also observed that HS1 is partially localized in the nucleus of neoplastic B cells. All these data add new information on HS1 study, hypothesizing a pivotal role of HS1 in Lyn-mediated modulation of leukemic cells’ survival and focusing, one more time, the attention on the BCR-Lyn axis as a putative target for new therapeutic strategies in this disorder.
For therapeutic purposes, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has traditionally been regarded as a single disease. However, recent evidence suggest that the two major subtypes of NSCLC, adenocarcinoma (AC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SqCC) respond differently to both molecular targeted and new generation chemotherapies. Therefore, identifying the molecular differences between these tumor types may impact novel treatment strategy. We performed the first large-scale analysis of 261 primary NSCLC tumors (169 AC and 92 SqCC), integrating genome-wide DNA copy number, methylation and gene expression profiles to identify subtype-specific molecular alterations relevant to new agent design and choice of therapy. Comparison of AC and SqCC genomic and epigenomic landscapes revealed 778 altered genes with corresponding expression changes that are selected during tumor development in a subtype-specific manner. Analysis of >200 additional NSCLCs confirmed that these genes are responsible for driving the differential development and resulting phenotypes of AC and SqCC. Importantly, we identified key oncogenic pathways disrupted in each subtype that likely serve as the basis for their differential tumor biology and clinical outcomes. Downregulation of HNF4α target genes was the most common pathway specific to AC, while SqCC demonstrated disruption of numerous histone modifying enzymes as well as the transcription factor E2F1. In silico screening of candidate therapeutic compounds using subtype-specific pathway components identified HDAC and PI3K inhibitors as potential treatments tailored to lung SqCC. Together, our findings suggest that AC and SqCC develop through distinct pathogenetic pathways that have significant implication in our approach to the clinical management of NSCLC.
Intra-aortic clusters (IACs) attach to floor of large arteries and are considered to have recently acquired hematopoietic stem cell (HSC)-potential in vertebrate early mid-gestation embryos. The formation and function of IACs is poorly understood. To address this issue, IACs were characterized by immunohistochemistry and flow cytometry in mouse embryos. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that IACs simultaneously express the surface antigens CD31, CD34 and c-Kit. As embryos developed from 9.5 to 10.5 dpc, IACs up-regulate the hematopoietic markers CD41 and CD45 while down-regulating the endothelial surface antigen VE-cadherin/CD144, suggesting that IACs lose endothelial phenotype after 9.5 dpc. Analysis of the hematopoietic potential of IACs revealed a significant change in macrophage CFC activity from 9.5 to 10.5 dpc. To further characterize IACs, we isolated IACs based on CD45 expression. Correspondingly, the expression of hematopoietic transcription factors in the CD45(neg) fraction of IACs was significantly up-regulated. These results suggest that the transition from endothelial to hematopoietic phenotype of IACs occurs after 9.5 dpc.
Background and Aim
Altered expression of microRNAs (miRNAs) hallmarks many cancer types. The study of the associations of miRNA expression profile and cancer phenotype could help identify the links between deregulation of miRNA expression and oncogenic pathways.
Expression profiling of 866 human miRNAs in 19 colorectal and 17 pancreatic cancers and in matched adjacent normal tissues was investigated. Classical paired t-test and random forest analyses were applied to identify miRNAs associated with tissue-specific tumors. Network analysis based on a computational approach to mine associations between cancer types and miRNAs was performed.
The merge between the two statistical methods used to intersect the miRNAs differentially expressed in colon and pancreatic cancers allowed the identification of cancer-specific miRNA alterations. By miRNA-network analysis, tissue-specific patterns of miRNA deregulation were traced: the driving miRNAs were miR-195, miR-1280, miR-140-3p and miR-1246 in colorectal tumors, and miR-103, miR-23a and miR-15b in pancreatic cancers.
MiRNA expression profiles may identify cancer-specific signatures and potentially useful biomarkers for the diagnosis of tissue specific cancers. miRNA-network analysis help identify altered miRNA regulatory networks that could play a role in tumor pathogenesis.
Xeroderma pigmentosum group D (XPD) codes for a DNA helicase involved in nucleotide excision repair that removes platinum-induced DNA damage. Genetic polymorphisms of XPD may affect DNA repair capacity and lead to individual differences in the outcome of patients after chemotherapy. This study aims to identify whether XPD polymorphisms affect clinical efficacy among advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients treated with platinum-based chemotherapy.
353 stage III-IV NSCLC patients receiving platinum-based chemotherapy as the first-line treatment were enrolled in this study. Four potentially functional XPD polymorphisms (Arg156Arg, Asp312Asn, Asp711Asp and Lys751Gln) were genotyped by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry or PCR-based sequencing.
Variant genotypes of XPD Asp312Asn, Asp711Asp and Lys751Gln were significantly associated with poorer NSCLC survival (P = 0.006, 0.006, 0.014, respectively, by log-rank test). The most common haplotype GCA (in order of Asp312Asn, Asp711Asp and Lys751Gln) also exhibited significant risk effect on NSCLC survival (log-rank P = 0.001). This effect was more predominant for patients with stage IIIB disease (P = 2.21×10−4, log-rank test). Increased risks for variant haplotypes of XPD were also observed among patients with performance status of 0–1 and patients with adenocarcinoma. However, no significant associations were found between these polymorphisms, chemotherapy response and PFS.
Our study provides evidence for the predictive role of XPD Asp312Asn, Asp711Asp and Lys751Gln polymorphisms/haplotype on NSCLC prognosis in inoperable advanced NSCLC patients treated with platinum-based chemotherapy.
The domestic pig (Sus scrofa), an important species in animal production industry, is a right model for studying adipogenesis and fat deposition. In order to expand the repertoire of porcine miRNAs and further explore potential regulatory miRNAs which have influence on adipogenesis, high-throughput Solexa sequencing approach was adopted to identify miRNAs in backfat of Large White (lean type pig) and Meishan pigs (Chinese indigenous fatty pig). We identified 215 unique miRNAs comprising 75 known pre-miRNAs, of which 49 miRNA*s were first identified in our study, 73 miRNAs were overlapped in both libraries, and 140 were novelly predicted miRNAs, and 215 unique miRNAs were collectively corresponding to 235 independent genomic loci. Furthermore, we analyzed the sequence variations, seed edits and phylogenetic development of the miRNAs. 17 miRNAs were widely conserved from vertebrates to invertebrates, suggesting that these miRNAs may serve as potential evolutional biomarkers. 9 conserved miRNAs with significantly differential expressions were determined. The expression of miR-215, miR-135, miR-224 and miR-146b was higher in Large White pigs, opposite to the patterns shown by miR-1a, miR-133a, miR-122, miR-204 and miR-183. Almost all novel miRNAs could be considered pig-specific except ssc-miR-1343, miR-2320, miR-2326, miR-2411 and miR-2483 which had homologs in Bos taurus, among which ssc-miR-1343, miR-2320, miR-2411 and miR-2483 were validated in backfat tissue by stem-loop qPCR. Our results displayed a high level of concordance between the qPCR and Solexa sequencing method in 9 of 10 miRNAs comparisons except for miR-1a. Moreover, we found 2 miRNAs, miR-135 and miR-183, may exert impacts on porcine backfat development through WNT signaling pathway. In conclusion, our research develops porcine miRNAs and should be beneficial to study the adipogenesis and fat deposition of different pig breeds based on miRNAs.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of non-coding RNA that plays an important role in posttranscriptional regulation of mRNA. Evidence has shown that miRNA gene variability might interfere with its function resulting in phenotypic variation and disease susceptibility. A major role in miRNA target recognition is ascribed to complementarity with the miRNA seed region that can be affected by polymorphisms. In the present study, we developed an online tool for the detection of miRNA polymorphisms (miRNA SNiPer) in vertebrates (http://www.integratomics-time.com/miRNA-SNiPer) and generated a catalog of miRNA seed region polymorphisms (miR-seed-SNPs) consisting of 149 SNPs in six species. Although a majority of detected polymorphisms were due to point mutations, two consecutive nucleotide substitutions (double nucleotide polymorphisms, DNPs) were also identified in nine miRNAs. We determined that miR-SNPs are frequently located within the quantitative trait loci (QTL), chromosome fragile sites, and cancer susceptibility loci, indicating their potential role in the genetic control of various complex traits. To test this further, we performed an association analysis between the mmu-miR-717 seed SNP rs30372501, which is polymorphic in a large number of standard inbred strains, and all phenotypic traits in these strains deposited in the Mouse Phenome Database. Analysis showed a significant association between the mmu-miR-717 seed SNP and a diverse array of traits including behavior, blood-clinical chemistry, body weight size and growth, and immune system suggesting that seed SNPs can indeed have major pleiotropic effects. The bioinformatics analyses, data and tools developed in the present study can serve researchers as a starting point in testing more targeted hypotheses and designing experiments using optimal species or strains for further mechanistic studies.
MicroRNA-34a (miR-34a), a potent mediator of tumor suppressor p53, has been reported to function as a tumor suppressor and miR-34a was found to be downregulated in prostate cancer tissues. We studied the functional effects of miR-34a on c-Myc transcriptional complexes in PC-3 prostate cancer cells. Transfection of miR-34a into PC-3 cells strongly inhibited in vitro cell proliferation, cell invasion and promoted apoptosis. Transfection of miR-34a into PC-3 cells also significantly inhibited in vivo xenograft tumor growth in nude mice. miR-34a downregulated expression of c-Myc oncogene by targeting its 3′ UTR as shown by luciferase reporter assays. miR-34a was found to repress RhoA, a regulator of cell migration and invasion, by suppressing c-Myc–Skp2–Miz1 transcriptional complex that activates RhoA. Overexpression of c-Myc reversed miR-34a suppression of RhoA expression, suggesting that miR-34a inhibits invasion by suppressing RhoA through c-Myc. miR-34a was also found to repress c-Myc-pTEFB transcription elongation complex, indicating one of the mechanisms by which miR-34a has profound effects on cellular function. This is the first report to document that miR-34a suppresses assembly and function of the c-Myc–Skp2–Miz1 complex that activates RhoA and the c-Myc-pTEFB complex that elongates transcription of various genes, suggesting a novel role of miR-34a in the regulation of transcription by c-Myc complex.