Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) accounts for most of the lung cancer cases and the prognosis of this disease remains poor despite decades of intensive investigation. Thus new insights into underlying mechanisms by which NSCLC develops are avidly needed as the basis for development of new lines of therapeutic strategies. The past decade has witnessed a growing interest on the regulatory roles of micro RNAs on various categories of malignancies. Related data has been well documented in carcinogenesis and pathophysiology of a variety of malignancies. Even so, there is a relative lack of data on roles of mir-144 in tumor biology and there has been no report showing the involvement of mir-144 in NSCLC development.
From human NSCLC tumor tissue samples and cell culture samples, we found that the expression of mir-144 is associated with malignant phenotype of NSCLC. Further investigations showed that ectopic mir-144 expression dramatically inhibits NSCLC tumor cell growth and induces apoptosis as manifested by elevated apoptotic protein markers and flowcytometry change. Moreover, we also found that ZFX protein expression is also associated with malignant phenotype of NSCLC and knockdown of ZFX protein results in a similar effect as of ectopic mir-144 expression. Finally, we found that ZFX expression is highly adjustable upon presence of mir-144 and ectopic expression of ZFX dramatically dampens mir-144 action of tumor inhibition.
Our results for the first time showed mir-144-ZFX pathway is involved in the development of NSCLC, which sheds a light for further investigations on underlying mechanisms toward better understanding and management of NSCLC.
Autophagy is a critical mechanism in both cancer therapy resistance and tumor suppression. Monoclonal antibodies have been documented to kill tumor cells via apoptosis, antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and complement-dependent cytotoxicity (CDC). In this study, we report for the first time that chLym-1, a chimeric anti-human HLA-DR monoclonal antibody, induces autophagy in Raji Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (NHL) cells. Interestingly, inhibition of autophagy by pharmacological inhibitors (3-methyladenine and NH4Cl) or genetic approaches (siRNA targeting Atg5) suppresses chLym-1-induced growth inhibition, apoptosis, ADCC and CDC in Raji cells, while induction of autophagy could accelerate cytotoxic effects of chLym-1 on Raji cells. Furthermore, chLym-1-induced autophagy can mediate apoptosis through Caspase 9 activation, demonstrating the tumor-suppressing role of autophagy in antilymphoma effects of chLym-1. Moreover, chLym-1 can activate several upstream signaling pathways of autophagy including Akt/mTOR and extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (Erk1/2). These results elucidate the critical role of autophagy in cytotoxicity of chLym-1 antibody and suggest a potential therapeutic strategy of NHL therapy by monoclonal antibody chLym-1 in combination with autophagy inducer.
MicroRNA (miRNA) are non-coding small RNA that regulate gene expression. MiR-328 is reported to influence breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP) expression in cancer cells. As a large inter-individual difference in BCRP levels is observed in various human tissues, the contribution of miR-328 to these differences is of interest. We hypothesized that DNA methylation in the miR-328 promoter region is responsible for the difference in miR-328 levels, leading to inter-individual variability in BCRP levels in human placenta. The association between placental miR-328 and BCRP levels was analyzed, and then DNA methylation in the miR-328 5'-flanking region and regulatory mechanisms causing inter-individual differences in miR-328 and BCRP levels were examined. MiR-328 expression was significantly correlated with BCRP mRNA (Rs = -0.560, P < 0.01) and protein (Rs = -0.730, P < 0.01) levels. It was also up-regulated by the demethylating agent 5-aza-2’-deoxycytidine in BCRP-expressing cells. Luciferase assays with differentially methylated reporter constructs indicated that methylation in the miR-328 5’-flanking region including a predicted CpG island remarkably decreased transcriptional activity compared to that in unmethylated constructs. We selected CCAAT/enhancer binding protein α (C/EBPα), located within the predicted CpG island, by in silico analysis. To elucidate the role of C/EBPα in miR-328 expression, a chromatin immunoprecipitation assay, promoter deletion analysis, and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) were performed. C/EBPα-binding site-truncated constructs showed significantly decreased promoter activity, and EMSA indicated that the C/EBPα-binding sites were located in the CpG island. Finally, the methylation patterns of several CpG dinucleotides proximal to two C/EBPα-binding sites in the miR-328 5’-flanking region were correlated negatively with miR-328 levels, and positively with BCRP levels in human placental samples. These results suggest that methylation patterns in the miR-328 5’-flanking region are involved in the inter-individual difference in BCRP levels in human placenta.
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is the most common malignant myeloid disorder of progenitor cells in myeloid hematopoiesis and exemplifies a genetically heterogeneous disease. The patients with AML also show a heterogeneous response to therapy. Although all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) has been successfully introduced to treat acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), it is rather ineffective in non-APL AML. In our present study, 1200 off-patent marketed drugs and natural compounds that have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) were screened for anti-leukemia activity using the retrovirus transduction/transformation assay (RTTA). Furazolidone (FZD) was shown to inhibit bone marrow transformation mediated by several leukemia fusion proteins, including AML1-ETO. Furazolidone has been used in the treatment of certain bacterial and protozoan infections in human and animals for more than sixty years. We investigated the anti-leukemic activity of FZD in a series of AML cells. FZD displayed potent antiproliferative properties at submicromolar concentrations and induced apoptosis in AML cell lines. Importantly, FZD treatment of certain AML cells induced myeloid cell differentiation by morphology and flow cytometry for CD11b expression. Furthermore, FZD treatment resulted in increased stability of tumor suppressor p53 protein in AML cells. Our in vitro results suggest furazolidone as a novel therapeutic strategy in AML patients.
Fucosylation is a crucial oligosaccharide modification in cancer. The known function of fucosylation in cancer is to mediate metastasis through selectin ligand-dependent processes. Previously, we found complete loss of fucosylation in the colon cancer cell line HCT116 due to a mutation in the GDP-fucose synthetic enzyme, GDP-mannose-4,6-dehydratase (GMDS). Loss of fucosylation led to escape of cancer cells from tumor immune surveillance followed by tumor progression and metastasis, suggesting a novel function of fucosylation in tumor progression pathway. In the present study, we investigated the frequency of GMDS mutation in a number of clinical colorectal cancer tissue samples: 81 samples of primary colorectal cancer tissue and 39 samples of metastatic lesion including liver and lymph node. Four types of deletion mutation in GMDS were identified in original cancer tissues as well as metastatic lesions. The frequency of GMDS mutation was slightly higher in metastatic lesions (12.8%, 5/39 samples) than in original cancer tissues (8.6%, 7/81 samples). No mutation of the GMDS gene was observed in normal colon tissues surrounding cancer tissues, suggesting that the mutation is somatic rather than in the germline. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed complete loss of fucosylation in three cases of cancer tissue. All three cases had GMDS mutation. In one of three cases, loss of fucosylation was observed in only metastatic lesion, but not its original colon cancer tissue. These data demonstrate involvement of GMDS mutation in the progression of colorectal cancer.
2-Zinc-glycoprotein 1 (AZGP1) is a multidisciplinary protein that participates in many important functions in the human body, including fertilization, immunoregulation and lipid mobilization. Recently, it has been shown that AZGP1 is also involved in carcinogenesis and tumor differentiation. In this study, we investigated the expression levels and prognostic value of AZGP1 in primary gastric cancers.
Methods and Results
We examined the expression of AZGP1 in 35 paired cancerous and matched adjacent noncancerous gastric mucosa tissues by real-time quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) and western blotting. Furthermore, we analyzed AZGP1 expression in 248 patients who underwent resection procedures between 2005 and 2007 using immunohistochemistry. The relationships between the AZGP1 expression levels, the clinicopathological factors, and patient survival were investigated. AZGP1 expression was significantly reduced at both the mRNA (P = 0.023) and protein levels (P = 0.019) in tumor tissue samples, compared with expression in matched adjacent non-tumor tissue samples. The immunohistochemical staining data showed that AZGP1 expression was significantly decreased in 52.8% (131/248) of gastric adenocarcinoma cases. Clinicopathological analysis showed that the reduced expression of AZGP1 was significantly correlated with tumor location (P = 0.011), histological grade (P = 0.005) and T stage (P = 0.008). Kaplan–Meier survival curves revealed that the reduced expression of AZGP1 was associated with a poor prognosis in gastric adenocarcinoma patients (P = 0.009). Multivariate Cox analysis identified AZGP1 expression was an independent prognostic factor for overall survival of gastric adenocarcinoma patients (HR = 1.681, 95% CI = 1.134–2.494, P = 0.011).
Our study suggests that AZGP1 might serve as a candidate tumor suppressor and a potential prognostic biomarker in gastric carcinogenesis.
To investigate the clinical significance of the expression of MHC class I chain-related gene A (MICA) in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer and explore the relationship between MICA expression and the efficacy of cytokine-induced killer cell (CIK) therapy for treating advanced non-small cell lung cancer.
We obtained data on 222 patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer, including data on MICA expression, age, gender, ECOG score, pathological type, stage, treatment history (including 38 patients who were given autologous CIK cell infusion), and overall survival (OS). MICA expression in lung cancer tissue was evaluated by immunohistochemical staining. Analyses of MICA expression, and CIK therapy association with survival outcomes were performed using Cox proportional models, Kaplan-Meier methods, and the log-rank test.
s MICA was expressed in both membrane and cytoplasm. MICA expression correlated with the stage of lung cancer, ECOG score, gender and age. Multivariate COX regression analysis showed that the expression of MICA was an independent prognostic factor of advanced non-small cell lung cancer (p = 0.002). In subgroup analysis, we divided the 222 patients into CIK and control groups. In the CIK group, the medium OS (mOS) of patients with a high expression of MICA was longer than in those with low expression of MICA (27 months vs. 13 months). In the control group, the mOS in patients with a high expression of MICA was shorter than in patients with low MICA expression (9 months vs. 18 months). COX regression analysis showed that the MICA expression affects the effect of CIK therapy (p<0.0001).
1) The high expression of MICA is one of the indicators of a poor prognosis for advanced non-small cell lung cancer patients. 2) The high expression of MICA might be one of the predictive factors for successful CIK therapy.
The recurrence of colorectal cancer (CRC) is frequent within the first year of curative resection surgery and may be unavoidable. microRNAs have been suggested to play roles in carcinogenesis and cancer recurrence. We recently identified microRNA-29c (miRNA-29c) as a predictor of early recurrence in CRC. In the present study, we further investigated the functions and serum level of miRNA-29c in relation to early recurrence of CRC.
First we further confirmed overexpression of miRNA-29c in non-early relapse subjects. Gain-of-function in vitro studies were used to evaluate the effect of miRNA-29c on cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and cell cycle progression. The colon cancer cell line Caco2 and a stable clone overexpressing miRNA-29c were xenografted to evaluate the in vivo effect of miRNA-29c in null mice. Finally, circulating miRNA-29c was investigated as a potential biomarker for identifying early relapse.
miRNA-29c expression significantly decreased during early relapse compared to non-early relapse in UICC stage II and III CRC patients (P = 0.021). In vitro studies showed that overexpression of miRNA-29c inhibited cell proliferation and migration. The cell cycle studies also revealed that miRNA-29c caused an accumulation of the G1 and G2 population. In vivo, miRNA-29c suppressed tumor growth in null mice. The serum miRNA-29c increased significantly in early relapsed patients compared to non-early elapsed patients (P = 0.012).
miRNA-29c shows anti-tumorigenesis activity, and preoperative circulating miRNA-29c levels can be used to predict postoperative early relapse of CRC.
MicroRNA has been recently recognized as playing a prominent role in tumorigenesis and metastasis. Here, we report that miR-338-3p was epigenetically silenced in gastric cancer, and its down-regulation was significantly correlated with gastric cancer clinicopathological features. Strikingly, restoring miR-338-3p expression in SGC-7901 gastric cancer cells inhibited proliferation, migration, invasion and tumorigenicity in vitro and in vivo, at least partly through inducing apoptosis. Furthermore, we demonstrate the oncogene SSX2IP is a target of miR-338-3p. We propose that miR-338-3p functions as a tumor suppressor in gastric cancer, and the methylation status of its CpG island could serve as a potential diagnostic marker for gastric cancer.
The efficacy of cisplatin-based chemotherapy in non-small-cell lung cancer is limited by the acquired drug resistance. Identification the RNAs related to the cisplatin resistance may help to improve clinical response rates.
Microarray expression profiling of mRNAs, lncRNA and miRNA was undertaken in A549 cells and cisplatin resistant A549/CDDP cells. Differentially expressed mRNAs, lncRNAs and miRNAs, verified by realtime RT-PCR, were subjected to pathway analysis. Expression of NKD2 and β-catenin was assessed by realtime RT-PCR and western blot analysis. The effect of lncRNA AK126698 on cisplatin induced apoptosis was investigated by annexin-V/PI flow cytometry.
In total, 1471 mRNAs, 1380 lncRNAs and 25 miRNAs differentially expressed in A549/CDDP and A549 cells. Among them, 8 mRNAs, 8 lncRNAs and 5 miRNAs differentially expressed in gene chip analysis were validated. High-enrichment pathway analysis identified that some classical pathways participated in proliferation, differentiation, avoidance of apoptosis, and drug metabolism were differently expressed in these cells lines. Gene co-expression network identified many genes like FN1, CTSB, EGFR, and NKD2; lncRNAs including BX648420, ENST00000366408, and AK126698; and miRNAs such as miR-26a and let-7i potentially played a key role in cisplatin resistance. Among which, the canonical Wnt pathway was investigated because it was demonstrated to be targeted by both lncRNAs and miRNAs including lncRNA AK126698. Knockdown lncRNA AK126698 not only greatly decreased NKD2 which can negatively regulate Wnt/β-catenin signaling but also increased the accumulation and nuclear translocation of β-catenin, and significantly depressed apoptosis rate induced by cisplatin in A549 cells.
Cisplatin resistance in non-small-cell lung cancer cells may relate to the changes in noncoding RNAs. Among these, AK126698 appears to confer cisplatin resistance by targeting the Wnt pathway.
In recent years, microRNA (miRNA) pathways have emerged as a crucial system for the regulation of tumorogenesis. miR-SNPs are a novel class of single nucleotide polymorphisms that can affect miRNA pathways.
Design and Methods
We analyzed eight miR-SNPs by allelic discrimination in 141 patients with Hodgkin lymphoma and correlated the results with treatment-related toxicity, response, disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS).
The KRT81 (rs3660) GG genotype was associated with an increased risk of neurological toxicity (P = 0.016), while patients with XPO5 (rs11077) AA or CC genotypes had a higher rate of bleomycin-associated pulmonary toxicity (P = 0.048). Both miR-SNPs emerged as independent factors in the multivariate analysis. The XPO5 AA and CC genotypes were also associated with a lower response rate (P = 0.036). XPO5 (P = 0.039) and TRBP (rs784567) (P = 0.022) genotypes emerged as prognostic markers for DFS, and XPO5 was also associated with OS (P = 0.033). In the multivariate analysis, only XPO5 emerged as an independent prognostic factor for DFS (HR: 2.622; 95%CI 1.039–6.620; P = 0.041). Given the influence of XPO5 and TRBP as individual markers, we then investigated the combined effect of these miR-SNPs. Patients with both the XPO5 AA/CC and TRBP TT/TC genotypes had the shortest DFS (P = 0.008) and OS (P = 0.008).
miR-SNPs can add useful prognostic information on treatment-related toxicity and clinical outcome in Hodgkin lymphoma and can be used to identify patients likely to be chemoresistant or to relapse.
Recent evidence suggests that microscopic lymph node metastases and circulating tumor cells may have clinical importance in lung cancer. The purpose of this study was to identify new molecular markers for tumor cells in regional lymph nodes (LNs) and peripheral blood (PB) from patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Candidate markers were selected based on digital transcript profiling and previous literature. KRT19, CEACAM5, EPCAM, DSG3, SFTPA, SFTPC and SFTPB mRNA levels were initially validated by real-time reverse transcription PCR-based quantification in 16 NSCLC tumors and 22 LNs and 12 PB samples from individuals without known cancer. Five of the candidate markers were selected for secondary validation by quantification in parallel tumor biopsies, regional LNs and PB samples from 55 patients undergoing surgery for NSCLC. LN and PB marker status were compared to clinicopathological patient data.
All selected markers except DSG3 were present at high levels in the primary tumors and at very low or non-detectable levels in normal LNs and PB in the first round of validation, indicating a potential for detecting tumor cells in NSCLC patients. The expression profiles of KRT19, CEACAM5, DSG3, SFTPA and SFTPC mRNA were confirmed in the larger group during the secondary validation. Using the highest normal LN level of each marker as threshold, 39 (71%) of the 55 patients had elevated levels of at least one marker in regional LNs. Similarly, 26 (47%) patients had elevated levels of at least one marker in PB. A significantly higher number of patients with adenocarcinomas had positive LN status for these markers, compared with other histological types (P = 0.004).
Several promising molecular tumor cell markers in regional LNs and PB were identified, including the new SFTPA and SFTPC mRNAs. Clinical follow-up in a larger cohort is needed to elucidate their prognostic value.
microRNAs (miRNAs) have been implicated in the control of many biological processes and their deregulation has been associated with many cancers. In recent years, the cancer stem cell (CSC) concept has been applied to many cancers including pediatric. We hypothesized that a common signature of deregulated miRNAs in the CSCs fraction may explain the disrupted signaling pathways in CSCs.
Using a high throughput qPCR approach we identified 26 CSC associated differentially expressed miRNAs (DEmiRs). Using BCmicrO algorithm 865 potential CSC associated DEmiR targets were obtained. These potential targets were subjected to KEGG, Biocarta and Gene Ontology pathway and biological processes analysis. Four annotated pathways were enriched: cell cycle, cell proliferation, p53 and TGF-beta/BMP. Knocking down hsa-miR-21-5p, hsa-miR-181c-5p and hsa-miR-135b-5p using antisense oligonucleotides and small interfering RNA in cell lines led to the depletion of the CSC fraction and impairment of sphere formation (CSC surrogate assays).
Our findings indicated that CSC associated DEmiRs and the putative pathways they regulate may have potential therapeutic applications in pediatric cancers.
HTRA1 is a highly conserved serine protease which has been implicated in suppression of epithelial-to-mesenchymal-transition (EMT) and cell motility in breast cancer. Its prognostic relevance for breast cancer is unclear so far. Therefore, we evaluated the impact of HTRA1 mRNA expression on patient outcome using a cohort of 131 breast cancer patients as well as a validation cohort including 2809 publically available data sets. Additionally, we aimed at investigating for the presence of promoter hypermethylation as a mechanism for silencing the HTRA1 gene in breast tumors. HTRA1 downregulation was detected in more than 50% of the breast cancer specimens and was associated with higher tumor stage (p = 0.025). By applying Cox proportional hazard models, we observed favorable overall (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) related to high HTRA1 expression (HR = 0.45 [CI 0.23–0.90], p = 0.023; HR = 0.55 [CI 0.32–0.94], p = 0.028, respectively), with even more pronounced impact in node-positive patients (HR = 0.21 [CI 0.07–0.63], p = 0.006; HR = 0.29 [CI 0.13–0.65], p = 0.002, respectively). Moreover, HTRA1 remained a statistically significant factor predicting DFS among established clinical parameters in the multivariable analysis. Its impact on patient outcome was independently confirmed in the validation set (for relapse-free survival (n = 2809): HR = 0.79 [CI 0.7–0.9], log-rank p = 0.0003; for OS (n = 971): HR = 0.63 [CI 0.48–0.83], log-rank p = 0.0009). In promoter analyses, we in fact detected methylation of HTRA1 in a small subset of breast cancer specimens (two out of a series of 12), and in MCF-7 breast cancer cells which exhibited 22-fold lower HTRA1 mRNA expression levels compared to unmethylated MDA-MB-231 cells. In conclusion, we show that downregulation of HTRA1 is associated with shorter patient survival, particularly in node-positive breast cancer. Since HTRA1 loss was demonstrated to induce EMT and cancer cell invasion, these patients might benefit from demethylating agents or histone deacetylase inhibitors previously reported to lead to HTRA1 upregulation, or from novel small-molecule inhibitors targeting EMT-related processes.
Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM), a multisystem disease of women, is manifest by the proliferation of smooth muscle-like cells in the lung resulting in cystic lung destruction. Women with LAM can also develop renal angiomyolipomas. LAM is caused by mutations in the tuberous sclerosis complex genes (TSC1 or TSC2), resulting in hyperactive mammalian Target of Rapamycin (mTOR) signaling. The mTOR inhibitor, Rapamycin, stabilizes lung function in LAM and decreases the volume of renal angiomyolipomas, but lung function declines and angiomyolipomas regrow when treatment is discontinued, suggesting that factors induced by mTORC1 inhibition may promote the survival of TSC2-deficient cells. Whether microRNA (miRNA, miR) signaling is involved in the response of LAM to mTORC1 inhibition is unknown. We identified Rapamycin-dependent miRNA in LAM patient angiomyolipoma-derived cells using two separate screens. First, we assayed 132 miRNA of known significance to tumor biology. Using a cut-off of >1.5-fold change, 48 microRNA were Rapamycin-induced, while 4 miRs were downregulated. In a second screen encompassing 946 miRNA, 18 miRs were upregulated by Rapamycin, while eight were downregulated. Dysregulation of miRs 29b, 21, 24, 221, 106a and 199a were common to both platforms and were classified as candidate “RapamiRs.” Validation by qRT-PCR confirmed that these microRNA were increased. miR-21, a pro-survival miR, was the most significantly increased by mTOR-inhibition (p<0.01). The regulation of miR-21 by Rapamycin is cell type independent. mTOR inhibition promotes the processing of the miR-21 transcript (pri-miR-21) to a premature form (pre-miR-21). In conclusion, our findings demonstrate that Rapamycin upregulates multiple miRs, including pro-survival miRs, in TSC2-deficient patient-derived cells. The induction of miRs may contribute to the response of LAM and TSC patients to Rapamycin therapy.
Emerging evidence has shown that miRNAs participate in human carcinogenesis as tumor suppressors or oncogenes, and have prognostic value for patients with cancers. In recent years, the miR-181 family was found dysregulated in a variety of human cancers and significantly associated with clinical outcome of cancerous patients. MiR-181a and miR-181b (miR-181a/b) were the most investigated members in the family. However, the results of miR-181a/b from different studies were inconsistent. Therefore, we performed a meta-analysis to summarize all the results from available studies, aiming to delineate the prognostic role of miR-181a/b in human cancers.
The identified articles were retrieved from the two main on-line databases, PubMed and EMBASE. We extracted and estimated the hazard ratios (HRs) for overall survival (OS), which compared the high and low expression levels of miR-181a/b in patients of the available studies. Each individual HR was used to calculate the pooled HR.
Eleven studies of 1252 patients were selected into the final meta-analysis after a strict filtering and qualifying process. Fixed model or random model method was chosen depending on the heterogeneity between the studies. The subgroup analysis showed that high expressed miR-181a/b could prolong OS in patients with hematological malignancies rather than low expression level (HR = 0.717, P<0.0001). But the expression of miR-181a/b was not significantly relative to OS in patients with various cancers (HR = 0.861, p = 0.356).
Our study indicates that the expression level of miR-181a/b is significantly associated with OS in hematological malignancies and can be an important clinical prognostic factor for those patients.
Cancer is a complex disease process that evolves as a consequence of multiple malfunctions in key regulatory molecular networks. Understanding these networks will be essential to combat cancer. In this study, we focussed on central players in such networks. In a series of colon and breast cancer cell lines, we found that CD24 activates Src, and induces the activation of c-Jun and expression of c-Jun and c-Fos. Thereby CD24 increases the promoter activity and expression of miR-21, which in turn suppresses expression of Pdcd4 and PTEN. Co-transfection of a CD24 expression construct and an siRNA that silences Src showed that CD24-dependent upregulation of miR-21 is mediated by Src. Additionally, we found that miR-34a post-transcriptionally downregulates CD24 and Src expression, leading to the deactivation of c-Jun, reduced expression of c-Jun and c-Fos, inhibition of miR-21, and upregulation of Pdcd4 and PTEN. Furthermore, miR-34a-mediated inhibition of Src expression reduced migration and invasion of colorectal cancer cells. Resected tumor tissues from 26 colorectal patients showed significantly lower expression of Pdcd4 and miR-34a, and higher expression of CD24, Src and miR-21 compared to the corresponding normal tissues. Moreover, CD24 positively correlated with the amount of Src protein in tumor tissues, and a trend towards an inverse correlation between miR-34a and Src protein levels was also observed. Our results reveal essential players in the complex networks that regulate the progression of solid tumors such as colorectal cancer. These findings therefore identify novel therapeutic approaches for combating tumor growth and progression.
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.