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2.  Role of microRNA-146a in normal and malignant hematopoietic stem cell function 
Frontiers in Genetics  2014;5:219.
Regulation of hematopoiesis is controlled by microRNAs (miRNAs). In this review, we focus on miR-146a, and its role in regulating normal and malignant hematopoiesis. miR-146a is a negative regulator of immune cell activation by repressing two targets, TRAF6 and IRAK1. Genetic deletion of miR-146a confirmed a role of miR-146a during innate immune signaling as well as for hematopoietic stem cell function. miR-146a is also implicated in the pathogenesis of human myelodysplastic syndromes (MDSs) as it is located within a commonly deleted region on chromosome 5, and miR-146a-deficient mice exhibit features of an MDS-like disease. With new insight into miR-146a through genetic and expression analyses, we highlight and discuss the recent advances in the understanding of miR-146a in physiological hematopoiesis during steady-state and inflammation, as well as in MDS.
PMCID: PMC4087671  PMID: 25071842
microRNA; hematopoietic stem cells; NF-kappa B; myelodysplastic syndromes; immune system
3.  Targeting IRAK1 as a therapeutic approach for Myelodysplastic Syndrome 
Cancer cell  2013;24(1):90-104.
Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) arise from a defective hematopoietic stem/progenitor cell. Consequently, there is an urgent need to develop targeted therapies capable of eliminating the MDS-initiating clones. We identified that IRAK1, an immune modulating kinase, is overexpressed and hyperactivated in MDS. MDS clones treated with a small-molecule IRAK1 inhibitor (IRAK1/4-Inh) exhibited impaired expansion and increased apoptosis, which coincided with TRAF6/NF- κB inhibition. Suppression of IRAK1, either by RNAi or with IRAK1/4-Inh, is detrimental to MDS cells while sparing normal CD34+ cells. Based on an integrative gene expression analysis, we combined IRAK1 and BCL2 inhibitors and found that co-treatment more effectively eliminated MDS clones. In summary, these findings implicate IRAK1 as a drugable target in MDS.
PMCID: PMC3711103  PMID: 23845443
4.  IRAK1: oncotarget in MDS and AML 
Oncotarget  2014;5(7):1699-1700.
PMCID: PMC4039125  PMID: 24880611
5.  TRAF6 is an amplified oncogene bridging the RAS and NF-κB pathways in human lung cancer  
The Journal of Clinical Investigation  2011;121(10):4095-4105.
Somatic mutations and copy number alterations (as a result of deletion or amplification of large portions of a chromosome) are major drivers of human lung cancers. Detailed analysis of lung cancer–associated chromosomal amplifications could identify novel oncogenes. By performing an integrative cytogenetic and gene expression analysis of non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) cell lines and tumors, we report here the identification of a frequently recurring amplification at chromosome 11 band p13. Within this region, only TNF receptor–associated factor 6 (TRAF6) exhibited concomitant mRNA overexpression and gene amplification in lung cancers. Inhibition of TRAF6 in human lung cancer cell lines suppressed NF-κB activation, anchorage-independent growth, and tumor formation. In these lung cancer cell lines, RAS required TRAF6 for its oncogenic capabilities. Furthermore, TRAF6 overexpression in NIH3T3 cells resulted in NF-κB activation, anchorage-independent growth, and tumor formation. Our findings show that TRAF6 is an oncogene that is important for RAS-mediated oncogenesis and provide a mechanistic explanation for the previously apparent importance of constitutive NF-κB activation in RAS-driven lung cancers.
PMCID: PMC3195480  PMID: 21911935

Results 1-5 (5)