Caloric restriction (CR) mitigates many detrimental effects of aging and prolongs lifespan. CR has been suggested to increase mitochondrial biogenesis, thereby attenuating age-related declines in mitochondrial function; a concept that is challenged by recent studies. Here we show that lifelong CR in mice prevents age-related loss of mitochondrial oxidative capacity and efficiency, measured in isolated mitochondria and permeabilized muscle fibers. We find that these beneficial effects of CR occur without increasing mitochondrial abundance. Whole-genome expression profiling and large-scale proteomic surveys revealed expression patterns inconsistent with increased mitochondrial biogenesis, which is further supported by lower mitochondrial protein synthesis with CR. We find that CR decreases oxidant emission, increases antioxidant scavenging, and minimizes oxidative damage to DNA and protein. These results demonstrate that CR preserves mitochondrial function by protecting the integrity and function of existing cellular components rather than by increasing mitochondrial biogenesis.
Caloric Restriction; Calorie restriction; dietary restriction; aging; mitochondria; protein synthesis; skeletal muscle; mitochondrial biogenesis
Advantages of RNA-Seq over array based platforms are quantitative gene expression and discovery of expressed single nucleotide variants (eSNVs) and fusion transcripts from a single platform, but the sensitivity for each of these characteristics is unknown. We measured gene expression in a set of manually degraded RNAs, nine pairs of matched fresh-frozen, and FFPE RNA isolated from breast tumor with the hybridization based, NanoString nCounter (226 gene panel) and with whole transcriptome RNA-Seq using RiboZeroGold ScriptSeq V2 library preparation kits. We performed correlation analyses of gene expression between samples and across platforms. We then specifically assessed whole transcriptome expression of lincRNA and discovery of eSNVs and fusion transcripts in the FFPE RNA-Seq data. For gene expression in the manually degraded samples, we observed Pearson correlations of >0.94 and >0.80 with NanoString and ScriptSeq protocols, respectively. Gene expression data for matched fresh-frozen and FFPE samples yielded mean Pearson correlations of 0.874 and 0.783 for NanoString (226 genes) and ScriptSeq whole transcriptome protocols respectively, p<2x10-16. Specifically for lincRNAs, we observed superb Pearson correlation (0.988) between matched fresh-frozen and FFPE pairs. FFPE samples across NanoString and RNA-Seq platforms gave a mean Pearson correlation of 0.838. In FFPE libraries, we detected 53.4% of high confidence SNVs and 24% of high confidence fusion transcripts. Sensitivity of fusion transcript detection was not overcome by an increase in depth of sequencing up to 3-fold (increase from ~56 to ~159 million reads). Both NanoString and ScriptSeq RNA-Seq technologies yield reliable gene expression data for degraded and FFPE material. The high degree of correlation between NanoString and RNA-Seq platforms suggests discovery based whole transcriptome studies from FFPE material will produce reliable expression data. The RiboZeroGold ScriptSeq protocol performed particularly well for lincRNA expression from FFPE libraries, but detection of eSNV and fusion transcripts was less sensitive.
To identify venous thromboembolism (VTE) disease-susceptibility genes.
We performed in silico genome wide association (GWAS) analyses using genotype data imputed to ~2.5 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from adults with objectively-diagnosed VTE (n=1503), and controls frequency-matched on age and sex (n=1459; discovery population). SNPs exceeding genome-wide significance were replicated in a separate population (VTE cases, n=1407; controls, n=1418). Genes associated with VTE were resequenced.
Seven SNPs exceeded genome-wide significance (P < 5 × 10-8); four on chromosome 1q24.2 (F5 rs6025 [Factor V Leiden], BLZF1 rs7538157, NME7 rs16861990 and SLC19A2 rs2038024) and three on chromosome 9q34.2 (ABO rs2519093 [ABO intron 1], rs495828, rs8176719 [ABO blood type O allele]). The replication study confirmed a significant association of F5, NME7, and ABO with VTE. However, F5 was the main signal on 1q24.2 as only ABO SNPs remained significantly associated with VTE after adjusting for F5 rs6025. This 1q24.2 region was shown to be inherited as a haplotype block. ABO resequencing identified 15 novel single nucleotide variations (SNV) in ABO intron 6 and the ABO 3’ UTR that were strongly associated with VTE (P < 10-4) and belonged to three distinct linkage disequilibrium (LD) blocks; none were in LD with ABO rs8176719 or rs2519093. Our sample size provided 80% power to detect odds ratios=2.0 and 1.51 for minor allele frequencies=0.05 and 0.5, respectively (α=1 × 10-8; 1% VTE prevalence).
Aside from F5 rs6025, ABO rs8176719 and rs2519093, and F2 rs1799963, additional common and high VTE-risk SNPs among whites are unlikely.
venous thromboembolism; deep vein thrombosis; pulmonary embolism; genetics; genome-wide scan; epidemiology
It has been hypothesized that vitamin D mediates the inverse relationship between sun exposure and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) risk reported in several recent studies. We evaluated the association of self-reported sun exposure at ages <13, 13–21, 22–40, and 41+ years and 19 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from 4 candidate genes relevant to vitamin D metabolism (RXR, VDR, CYP24A1, CYP27B1) with NHL risk.
This analysis included 1,009 newly diagnosed NHL cases and 1,233 frequency-matched controls from an ongoing clinic-based study. Odds ratios (OR), 95 % confidence intervals (CI), and tests for trend were estimated using unconditional logistic regression.
There was a significant decrease in NHL risk with increased sun exposure at ages 13–21 years (OR≥15 vs. ≤3 h/week = 0.68; 95 % CI, 0.43–1.08; ptrend = 0.0025), which attenuated for older ages at exposure. We observed significant main effect associations for 3 SNPs in VDR and 1 SNP in CYP24A1: rs886441 (ORper-allele = 0.82; 95 % CI, 0.70–0.96; p = 0.016), rs3819545 (ORper-allele = 1.24; 95 % CI, 1.10–1.40; p = 0.00043), and rs2239186 (ORper-allele = 1.22; 95 % CI, 1.05–1.41; p = 0.0095) for VDR and rs2762939 (ORper-allele = 0.85; 95 % CI, 0.75–0.98; p = 0.023) for CYP24A1. Moreover, the effect of sun exposure at age 13–21 years on overall NHL risk appears to be modified by germline variation in VDR (rs4516035; pinteraction = 0.0066). Exploratory analysis indicated potential heterogeneity of these associations by NHL subtype.
These results suggest that germline genetic variation in VDR, and therefore the vitamin D pathway, may mediate an association between early life sun exposure and NHL risk.
Ultraviolet radiation; Vitamin D; VDR; Molecular epidemiology; Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
Insulin regulates many cellular processes, but the full impact of insulin deficiency on cellular functions remains to be defined. Applying a mass spectrometry–based nontargeted metabolomics approach, we report here alterations of 330 plasma metabolites representing 33 metabolic pathways during an 8-h insulin deprivation in type 1 diabetic individuals. These pathways included those known to be affected by insulin such as glucose, amino acid and lipid metabolism, Krebs cycle, and immune responses and those hitherto unknown to be altered including prostaglandin, arachidonic acid, leukotrienes, neurotransmitters, nucleotides, and anti-inflammatory responses. A significant concordance of metabolome and skeletal muscle transcriptome–based pathways supports an assumption that plasma metabolites are chemical fingerprints of cellular events. Although insulin treatment normalized plasma glucose and many other metabolites, there were 71 metabolites and 24 pathways that differed between nondiabetes and insulin-treated type 1 diabetes. Confirmation of many known pathways altered by insulin using a single blood test offers confidence in the current approach. Future research needs to be focused on newly discovered pathways affected by insulin deficiency and systemic insulin treatment to determine whether they contribute to the high morbidity and mortality in T1D despite insulin treatment.
Summary: Reduced representation bisulfite sequencing (RRBS) is a cost-effective approach for genome-wide methylation pattern profiling. Analyzing RRBS sequencing data is challenging and specialized alignment/mapping programs are needed. Although such programs have been developed, a comprehensive solution that provides researchers with good quality and analyzable data is still lacking. To address this need, we have developed a Streamlined Analysis and Annotation Pipeline for RRBS data (SAAP-RRBS) that integrates read quality assessment/clean-up, alignment, methylation data extraction, annotation, reporting and visualization. This package facilitates a rapid transition from sequencing reads to a fully annotated CpG methylation report to biological interpretation.
Availability and implementation: SAAP-RRBS is freely available to non-commercial users at the web site http://ndc.mayo.edu/mayo/research/biostat/stand-alone-packages.cfm.
firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
Determine biological mechanisms involved in post transplantation diabetes mellitus caused by the immunosuppressant FK506.
INS-1 cells and isolated rat islets were incubated with vehicle or FK506 and harvested at 24 hr intervals. Cells were assessed for viability, apoptosis, proliferation, cell insulin secretion and content. Gene expression studies by microarray analysis, qPCR and motifADE analysis of the microarray data identified potential FK506-mediated pathways and regulatory motifs. Mitochondrial functions, including cell respiration, mitochondrial content and bioenergetics were assessed.
Cell replication, viability, insulin secretion, oxygen consumption, and mitochondrial content were decreased (p < 0.05) 1.2-, 1.27-, 1.77-, 1.32-, and 1.43-fold, respectively after 48 hr FK506 treatment. Differences increased with time. FK506 (50 ng/ml) and Cyclosporine A (800 ng/ml) had comparable effects. FK 506 significantly decreased mitochondrial content and mitochondrial bioenergetics and showed a trend towards decreased oxygen consumption in isolated islets. Cell apoptosis and proliferation, mitochondrial DNA copy number and ATP/ADP ratios were not significantly affected. Pathway analysis of microarray data showed FK506 modification of pathways involving ATP metabolism, membrane trafficking and cytoskeleton remodeling. PGC1-α mRNA was down-regulated by FK506. MotifADE identified nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFAT), an important mediator of β cell survival and function, as a potential factor mediating both up- and down-regulation of gene expression.
At pharmacologically relevant concentrations FK506 decreases insulin secretion and reduces mitochondrial density and function without changing apoptosis rates, suggesting that post transplantation diabetes induced by FK506 may be mediated by its effects on mitochondrial function.
Multiple myeloma (MM) is characterized by the accumulation of malignant plasma cells (PCs) in the bone marrow (BM). MM is viewed as a clonal disorder due to lack of verified intraclonal sequence diversity in the immunoglobulin heavy chain variable region gene (IGHV). However, this conclusion is based on analysis of a very limited number of IGHV subclones and the methodology employed did not permit simultaneous analysis of the IGHV repertoire of non-malignant PCs in the same samples. Here we generated genomic DNA and cDNA libraries from purified MM BMPCs and performed massively parallel pyrosequencing to determine the frequency of cells expressing identical IGHV sequences. This method provided an unprecedented opportunity to interrogate the presence of clonally related MM cells and evaluate the IGHV repertoire of non-MM PCs. Within the MM sample, 37 IGHV genes were expressed, with 98.9% of all immunoglobulin sequences using the same IGHV gene as the MM clone and 83.0% exhibiting exact nucleotide sequence identity in the IGHV and heavy chain complementarity determining region 3 (HCDR3). Of interest, we observed in both genomic DNA and cDNA libraries 48 sets of identical sequences with single point mutations in the MM clonal IGHV or HCDR3 regions. These nucleotide changes were suggestive of putative subclones and therefore were subjected to detailed analysis to interpret: 1) their legitimacy as true subclones; and 2) their significance in the context of MM. Finally, we report for the first time the IGHV repertoire of normal human BMPCs and our data demonstrate the extent of IGHV repertoire diversity as well as the frequency of clonally-related normal BMPCs. This study demonstrates the power and potential weaknesses of in-depth sequencing as a tool to thoroughly investigate the phylogeny of malignant PCs in MM and the IGHV repertoire of normal BMPCs.
IGHV; multiple myeloma; heterogeneity; massively parallel sequencing
Preclinical investigations have identified insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling as a key mechanism for cancer growth and resistance to clinically useful therapies in multiple tumor types, including breast cancer. Thus, agents targeting and blocking IGF signaling have promise in the treatment of solid tumors. To identify possible mechanisms of resistance to blocking the IGF pathway, we generated a cell line that was resistant to the IGF-1R/InsR benzimidazole inhibitors BMS-554417 and BMS-536924 and compared expression profiles of the parental and resistant cells lines using Affymetrix GeneChip Human Genome U133 arrays. Compared to MCF-7 cells, BCRP expression was increased 9-fold in MCF-7R4, which was confirmed by immunoblotting and was highly statistically significant (p= 7.13E-09). BCRP was also upregulated in an independently derived resistant cell line, MCF7 924R. MCF-7R4 cells had significantly lower intracellular accumulation of BMS-536924 compared to MCF-7 cells. Expression of BCRP in MCF-7 cells was sufficient to reduce sensitivity to BMS-536924. Furthermore, knockdown of BCRP in MCF-7R4 cells resensitized cells to BMS-536924. Four cell lines selected for resistance to the pyrrolotriazine IGF-1R/InsR inhibitor, BMS-754807 did not have upregulation of BCRP. These data suggest that benzimidazole IGF-1R/InsR inhibitors may select for upregulation and be effluxed by the ABC transporter BCRP, contributing to resistance. However, pyrrolotriazine IGF-1R/InsR inhibitors do not appear to be affected by this resistance mechanism.
BCRP; BMS-536924; Receptor; IGF Type I; tyrosine kinase inhibitor mechanism of resistance
KRAS mutations are highly prevalent in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and tumors harboring these mutations tend to be aggressive and resistant to chemotherapy. We used next-generation sequencing technology to identify pathways that are specifically altered in lung tumors harboring a KRAS mutation. Paired-end RNA-sequencing of 15 primary lung adenocarcinoma tumors (8 harboring mutant KRAS and 7 with wild-type KRAS) were performed. Sequences were mapped to the human genome, and genomic features, including differentially expressed genes, alternate splicing isoforms and single nucleotide variants, were determined for tumors with and without KRAS mutation using a variety of computational methods. Network analysis was carried out on genes showing differential expression (374 genes), alternate splicing (259 genes), and SNV-related changes (65 genes) in NSCLC tumors harboring a KRAS mutation. Genes exhibiting two or more connections from the lung adenocarcinoma network were used to carry out integrated pathway analysis. The most significant signaling pathways identified through this analysis were the NFκB, ERK1/2, and AKT pathways. A 27 gene mutant KRAS-specific sub network was extracted based on gene–gene connections from the integrated network, and interrogated for druggable targets. Our results confirm previous evidence that mutant KRAS tumors exhibit activated NFκB, ERK1/2, and AKT pathways and may be preferentially sensitive to target therapeutics toward these pathways. In addition, our analysis indicates novel, previously unappreciated links between mutant KRAS and the TNFR and PPARγ signaling pathways, suggesting that targeted PPARγ antagonists and TNFR inhibitors may be useful therapeutic strategies for treatment of mutant KRAS lung tumors. Our study is the first to integrate genomic features from RNA-Seq data from NSCLC and to define a first draft genomic landscape model that is unique to tumors with oncogenic KRAS mutations.
transcriptome sequencing; RNA-Seq; KRAS mutation; NSCLC; bioinformatics; network analysis; data integration and computational methods
Human chromosomal region 8q24 contains several genes which could be functionally related to cancer, including the proto-oncogene c-MYC. However, the abundance of associations around 128 Mb on chromosome 8 could mask the appearance of a weaker, but important, association elsewhere on 8q24.
In this study, we completed a meta-analysis of results from nine genome-wide association studies for seven types of solid-tumor cancers (breast, prostate, pancreatic, lung, ovarian, colon, and glioma) to identify additional associations that were not apparent in any individual study.
Fifteen SNPs in the 8q24 region had meta-analysis p-values < 1E-04. In particular, the region consisting of 120,576,000-120,627,000 bp contained 7 SNPs with p-values < 1.0E-4, including rs6993464 (p = 1.25E-07). This association lies in the region between two genes, NOV and ENPP2, which have been shown to play a role in tumor development and motility. An additional region consisting of 5 markers from 128,478,000 bp - 128,524,000 (around gene POU5F1B) had p-values < 1E-04, including rs6983267, which had the smallest p-value (p = 6.34E-08). This result replicates previous reports of association between rs6983267 and prostate and colon cancer.
Further research in this area is warranted as these results demonstrate that the chromosomal region 8q24 may contain a locus that influences general cancer susceptibility between 120,576 and 120,630 kb.
Summary: TREAT (Targeted RE-sequencing Annotation Tool) is a tool for facile navigation and mining of the variants from both targeted resequencing and whole exome sequencing. It provides a rich integration of publicly available as well as in-house developed annotations and visualizations for variants, variant-hosting genes and host-gene pathways.
Availability and implementation: TREAT is freely available to non-commercial users as either a stand-alone annotation and visualization tool, or as a comprehensive workflow integrating sequencing alignment and variant calling. The executables, instructions and the Amazon Cloud Images of TREAT can be downloaded at the website: http://ndc.mayo.edu/mayo/research/biostat/stand-alone-packages.cfm
Contact: Hossain.Asif@mayo.edu; Kocher.JeanPierre@mayo.edu
Supplementary information: Supplementary data are provided at Bioinformatics online.
Bronchoalveolar stem cells (BASCs) located in the bronchoalveolar duct junction are thought to regenerate both bronchiolar and alveolar epithelium during homeostatic turnover and in response to injury. The mechanisms directing self-renewal in BASCs are poorly understood.
BASCs (Sca-1+, CD34+, CD31− and, CD45−) were isolated from adult mouse lung using FACS, and their capacity for self-renewal and differentiation were demonstrated by immunostaining. A transcription factor network of 53 genes required for pluripotency in embryonic stem cells was assessed in BASCs, Kras-initiated lung tumor tissue, and lung organogenesis by real-time PCR. c-Myc was knocked down in BASCs by infection with c-Myc shRNA lentivirus. Comprehensive miRNA and mRNA profiling for BASCs was performed, and significant miRNAs and mRNAs potentially regulated by c-Myc were identified. We explored a c-Myc regulatory network in BASCs using a number of statistical and computational approaches through two different strategies; 1) c-Myc/Max binding sites within individual gene promoters, and 2) miRNA-regulated target genes.
c-Myc expression was upregulated in BASCs and downregulated over the time course of lung organogenesis in vivo. The depletion of c-Myc in BASCs resulted in decreased proliferation and cell death. Multiple mRNAs and miRNAs were dynamically regulated in c-Myc depleted BASCs. Among a total of 250 dynamically regulated genes in c-Myc depleted BASCs, 57 genes were identified as potential targets of miRNAs through miRBase and TargetScan-based computational mapping. A further 88 genes were identified as potential downstream targets through their c-Myc binding motif.
c-Myc plays a critical role in maintaining the self-renewal capacity of lung bronchoalveolar stem cells through a combination of miRNA and transcription factor regulatory networks.
HIV infection of CD4 T cells can lead to HIV protease-mediated cleavage of procaspase 8 generating a novel, HIV-specific peptide called Casp8p41. Casp8p41 has at least two biologic functions: induction of cell death via mitochondrial depolarization and release of cytochrome C, as well as activation of nuclear factor kappa B (NFκB). We have previously shown that Casp8p41-induced NFκB activation enhances HIV LTR transcription and consequently increases HIV replication. Herein, we questioned whether Casp8p41-induced NFκB activation impacts the cytokine profile of cells expressing Casp8p41.
Analysis of cells expressing Casp8p41 and HIV-infected T cells.
We assessed whether host genes are transcriptionally activated following Casp8p41 production, using microarray analysis, cytokine quantification, followed by western blot and flow cytometry.
Microarray analysis identified 259 genes significantly upregulated following expression of Casp8p41. Furthermore, Casp8p41 expression in primary CD4 T cells results in increased production of interleukin (IL)-2, IL-15 and tumor necrosis factor (TNF), as well as IL-1RA; whereas levels of granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor and interferon (IFN)-γ were reduced in the Casp8p41 expressing cells. Intra-cellular flow cytometry confirmed the co-association of Casp8p41 with elevated TNF in HIV-infected cells.
These data indicate that the expression of Casp8p41 in HIV-infected CD4 T cells in addition to promoting apoptosis and enhancing HIV replication also promotes a proinflammatory cytokine milieu, which is characteristic of untreated HIV infection.
apoptosis; Casp8p41; HIV; inflammation; protease; tumor necrosis factor
Monocyte activation by chemokines is a vital trigger for initiation of atherosclerotic process. Circulating levels of Platelet Activating Factor (PAF), a recognized chemokine, is known to be increased in type 2 diabetes that is linked to accelerated atherosclerosis. To explore the molecular basis we examined the signaling pathways involved in PAF induced monocyte activation. PAF increased migration in monocytes obtained from THP-1 cells, nondiabetic and diabetic subjects that was blocked by AKT inhibition. It did so by phosphorylation of GSK-3βS9 which was completely blocked by AKT inhibition. Additionally, PAF induced GSK-3β phosphorylation was linked to Rac-1 activation and Rho-A inactivation leading to migration. Paradoxically, inhibition of GSK-3β phosphorylation also augmented monocyte migration in THP-1, nondiabetic and diabetic monocytes through phosphorylation of AKT and activation of Rho-A that was independent of GSK. This was validated when a) over-expression of dominant negative mutants of Rho-A reversed GSK inhibitor induced monocyte migration, and b) AKT inhibition blocked GSK inhibitor induced Rho-A activity. Constitutively active ARAP3 (Rho-GAP) appears to have a regulatory role in monocyte activity during GSK inhibition. Finally, inhibition of monocyte GSK-3β activity (by inhibitors and genetic manipulation) led to enhanced migration in diabetes compared to nondiabetic subjects. We conclude that diabetic monocytes show increased migratory capacity in response to GSK-3β inhibition. GSK inhibitors developed to treat the metabolic complications of diabetes should therefore be used with caution.
monocyte; diabetes; glycogen synthase kinase
SnowShoes-FTD, developed for fusion transcript detection in paired-end mRNA-Seq data, employs multiple steps of false positive filtering to nominate fusion transcripts with near 100% confidence. Unique features include: (i) identification of multiple fusion isoforms from two gene partners; (ii) prediction of genomic rearrangements; (iii) identification of exon fusion boundaries; (iv) generation of a 5′–3′ fusion spanning sequence for PCR validation; and (v) prediction of the protein sequences, including frame shift and amino acid insertions. We applied SnowShoes-FTD to identify 50 fusion candidates in 22 breast cancer and 9 non-transformed cell lines. Five additional fusion candidates with two isoforms were confirmed. In all, 30 of 55 fusion candidates had in-frame protein products. No fusion transcripts were detected in non-transformed cells. Consideration of the possible functions of a subset of predicted fusion proteins suggests several potentially important functions in transformation, including a possible new mechanism for overexpression of ERBB2 in a HER-positive cell line. The source code of SnowShoes-FTD is provided in two formats: one configured to run on the Sun Grid Engine for parallelization, and the other formatted to run on a single LINUX node. Executables in PERL are available for download from our web site: http://mayoresearch.mayo.edu/mayo/research/biostat/stand-alone-packages.cfm.
Chronic inflammation associated with ulcerative colitis predisposes individuals to increased colon cancer risk. The aim of these studies was to identify microRNAs that are aberrantly regulated during inflammation and may participate in transformation of colonic epithelial cells in the inflammatory setting.
We have use quantitative PCR arrays to compare microRNA (miRNA) expression in tumors and control colonic epithelial cells isolated from distal colons of chronically inflamed mice and APCMin/+ mice. Rank order statistics was utilized to identify differentially regulated miRNAs in tumors that arose due to chronic inflammation and/or to germline APC mutation. Eight high priority miRNAs were identified: miR-215, miR-137, miR-708, miR-31, and miR-135b were differentially expressed in APC tumors and miR-215, miR-133a, miR-467d, miR-218, miR-708, miR-31, and miR-135b in colitis-associated tumors. Four of these (miR-215, miR-708, miR-31, and miR-135b) were common to both tumors types, and dysregulation of these miRNAs was confirmed in an independent sample set. Target prediction and pathway analysis suggests that these microRNAs, in the aggregate, regulate signaling pathways related to MAPK, PI3K, WNT, and TGF-β, all of which are known to be involved in transformation.
We conclude that these four miRNAs are dysregulated at some very early stage in transformation of colonic epithelial cells. This response is not dependent on the mechanism of initiation of transformation (inflammation versus germline mutation), suggesting that the miRNAs that we have identified are likely to regulate critical signaling pathways that are central to early events in transformation of colonic epithelial cells.
The cDNA-mediated Annealing, extension, Selection and Ligation (DASL) assay has become a suitable gene expression profiling system for degraded RNA from paraffin-embedded tissue. We examined assay characteristics and the performance of the DASL 502-gene Cancer Panelv1 (1.5K) and 24,526-gene panel (24K) platforms at differentiating nine human epidermal growth factor receptor 2- positive (HER2+) and 11 HER2-negative (HER2-) paraffin-embedded breast tumors.
Bland-Altman plots and Spearman correlations evaluated intra/inter-panel agreement of normalized expression values. Unequal-variance t-statistics tested for differences in expression levels between HER2 + and HER2 - tumors. Regulatory network analysis was performed using Metacore (GeneGo Inc., St. Joseph, MI).
Technical replicate correlations ranged between 0.815-0.956 and 0.986-0.997 for the 1.5K and 24K panels, respectively. Inter-panel correlations of expression values for the common 498 genes across the two panels ranged between 0.485-0.573. Inter-panel correlations of expression values of 17 probes with base-pair sequence matches between the 1.5K and 24K panels ranged between 0.652-0.899. In both panels, erythroblastic leukemia viral oncogene homolog 2 (ERBB2) was the most differentially expressed gene between the HER2 + and HER2 - tumors and seven additional genes had p-values < 0.05 and log2 -fold changes > |0.5| in expression between HER2 + and HER2 - tumors: topoisomerase II alpha (TOP2A), cyclin a2 (CCNA2), v-fos fbj murine osteosarcoma viral oncogene homolog (FOS), wingless-type mmtv integration site family, member 5a (WNT5A), growth factor receptor-bound protein 7 (GRB7), cell division cycle 2 (CDC2), and baculoviral iap repeat-containing protein 5 (BIRC5). The top 52 discriminating probes from the 24K panel are enriched with genes belonging to the regulatory networks centered around v-myc avian myelocytomatosis viral oncogene homolog (MYC), tumor protein p53 (TP53), and estrogen receptor α (ESR1). Network analysis with a two-step extension also showed that the eight discriminating genes common to the 1.5K and 24K panels are functionally linked together through MYC, TP53, and ESR1.
The relative RNA abundance obtained from two highly differing density gene panels are correlated with eight common genes differentiating HER2 + and HER2 - breast tumors. Network analyses demonstrated biological consistency between the 1.5K and 24K gene panels.
Asthmatic chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (aCRSwNP) is a common disruptive eosinophilic disease without effective medical treatment. Therefore, we sought to identify gene expression changes, particularly those occurring early, in aCRSwNP. To highlight expression changes associated with eosinophilic epithelial inflammation, we further compared the changes in aCRSwNP with those in a second eosinophilic epithelial disease, atopic dermatitis (AD), which is also closely related to asthma.
Genome-wide mRNA levels measured by exon array in both nasosinus inflamed mucosa and adjacent polyp from 11 aCRSwNP patients were compared to those in nasosinus tissue from 17 normal or rhinitis subjects without polyps. Differential expression of selected genes was confirmed by qRT-PCR or immunoassay, and transcription changes common to AD were identified. Comparison of aCRSwNP inflamed mucosa and polyp to normal/rhinitis tissue identified 447 differentially transcribed genes at ≥2 fold-change and adjusted p-value<0.05. These included increased transcription of chemokines localized to chromosome 17q11.2 (CCL13, CCL2, CCL8, and CCL11) that favor eosinophil and monocyte chemotaxis and chemokines (CCL18, CCL22, and CXCL13) that alternatively-activated monocyte-derived cells have been shown to produce. Additional transcription changes likely associated with Th2-like eosinophilic inflammation were prominent and included increased IL1RL1 (IL33 receptor) and EMR1&3 and decreased CRISP2&3. A down-regulated PDGFB-centric network involving several smooth muscle-associated genes was also implicated. Genes at 17q11.2, genes associated with alternative activation or smooth muscle, and the IL1RL1 gene were also differentially transcribed in AD.
Our data implicate several genes or gene sets in aCRSwNP and eosinophilic epithelial inflammation, some that likely act in the earlier stages of inflammation. The identified gene expression changes provide additional diagnostic and therapeutic targets for aCRSwNP and other eosinophilic epithelial diseases.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are known to be important regulators of both organ development and tumorigenesis. MiRNA networks and their regulation of messenger RNA (mRNA) translation and protein expression in specific biological processes are poorly understood.
We explored the dynamic regulation of miRNAs in mouse lung organogenesis. Comprehensive miRNA and mRNA profiling was performed encompassing all recognized stages of lung development beginning at embryonic day 12 and continuing to adulthood. We analyzed the expression patterns of dynamically regulated miRNAs and mRNAs using a number of statistical and computational approaches, and in an integrated manner with protein levels from an existing mass-spectrometry derived protein database for lung development.
In total, 117 statistically significant miRNAs were dynamically regulated during mouse lung organogenesis and clustered into distinct temporal expression patterns. 11,220 mRNA probes were also shown to be dynamically regulated and clustered into distinct temporal expression patterns, with 3 major patterns accounting for 75% of all probes. 3,067 direct miRNA-mRNA correlation pairs were identified involving 37 miRNAs. Two defined correlation patterns were observed upon integration with protein data: 1) increased levels of specific miRNAs directly correlating with downregulation of predicted mRNA targets; and 2) increased levels of specific miRNAs directly correlating with downregulation of translated target proteins without detectable changes in mRNA levels. Of 1345 proteins analyzed, 55% appeared to be regulated in this manner with a direct correlation between miRNA and protein level, but without detectable change in mRNA levels.
Systematic analysis of microRNA, mRNA, and protein levels over the time course of lung organogenesis demonstrates dynamic regulation and reveals 2 distinct patterns of miRNA-mRNA interaction. The translation of target proteins affected by miRNAs independent of changes in mRNA level appears to be a prominent mechanism of developmental regulation in lung organogenesis.
Pilocytic astrocytomas (PAs) are WHO grade I gliomas; they most often affect children and young adults and occur in patients with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF-1). To identify genes that are differentially expressed in sporadic (S-PA) versus NF-1-associated PAs (NF1-PAs) and those that might reflect differences in clinical behavior, we performed gene expression profiling using Affymetrix U133 Plus2.0 GeneChip arrays in 36 S-PAs and 11 NF1-PAs. Thirteen genes were over-expressed and another 13 genes were under-expressed in NF1-associated PAs relative to S-PAs. Immunohistochemical studies performed on 103 tumors, representing 2 independently generated tissue microarrays, confirmed the differential expression of CUGBP2 (p = 0.0014), RANBP9 (p = 0.0075), ITGAV1 (p = 0.0001), and INFGR1 (p = 0.024) proteins. One of the underexpressed genes, aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 family, member L1 (ALDH1L1), was also reduced in clinically aggressive compared to typical PAs (p = 0.01) and in PAs with increased cellularity and necrosis. Furthermore, in an additional independent set of tumors, weak to absent ALDH1L1 expression was found in 13/18 (72%) clinically aggressive PAs, in 8/9 (89%) PAs with pilomyxoid features, in 7/10 (70%) PAs with anaplastic transformation and in 16/21 (76%) diffusely infiltrating astrocytomas of various grades. In summary, we have identified a molecular signature that distinguishes NF1-PA from S-PA, and found that ALDH1L1 underexpression is associated with aggressive histology and/or biological behavior.
Brain tumor; Glioma; Microarray; Molecular signature; Neurofibromatosis; Pilocytic astrocytoma
Massive parallel sequencing has the potential to replace microarrays as the method for transcriptome profiling. Currently there are two protocols: full-length RNA sequencing (RNA-SEQ) and 3'-tag digital gene expression (DGE). In this preliminary effort, we evaluated the 3' DGE approach using two reference RNA samples from the MicroArray Quality Control Consortium (MAQC).
Using Brain RNA sample from multiple runs, we demonstrated that the transcript profiles from 3' DGE were highly reproducible between technical and biological replicates from libraries constructed by the same lab and even by different labs, and between two generations of Illumina's Genome Analyzers. Approximately 65% of all sequence reads mapped to mitochondrial genes, ribosomal RNAs, and canonical transcripts. The expression profiles of brain RNA and universal human reference RNA were compared which demonstrated that DGE was also highly quantitative with excellent correlation of differential expression with quantitative real-time PCR. Furthermore, one lane of 3' DGE sequencing, using the current sequencing chemistry and image processing software, had wider dynamic range for transcriptome profiling and was able to detect lower expressed genes which are normally below the detection threshold of microarrays.
3' tag DGE profiling with massive parallel sequencing achieved high sensitivity and reproducibility for transcriptome profiling. Although it lacks the ability of detecting alternative splicing events compared to RNA-SEQ, it is much more affordable and clearly out-performed microarrays (Affymetrix) in detecting lower abundant transcripts.
Human colorectal cancers (CRCs) display a large number of genetic and epigenetic alterations, some of which are causally involved in tumorigenesis (drivers) and others that have little functional impact (passengers). To help distinguish between these two classes of alterations, we used a transposon-based genetic screen in mice to identify candidate genes for CRC. Mice harboring mutagenic Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposons were crossed to mice expressing SB transposase in gastrointestinal tract epithelium. Most of the offspring developed intestinal lesions including intraepithelial neoplasia, adenomas, and adenocarcinomas. Analysis of over 16,000 transposon insertions identified 77 candidate CRC genes, 60 of which are mutated and/or dysregulated in human CRC and thus are most likely to drive tumorigenesis. These genes include APC, PTEN and SMAD4. The screen also identified 17 new candidate genes that had not previously been implicated in CRC, including POLI, PTPRK, and RSPO2.
Expression level of many genes shows abundant natural variation in human populations. The variations in gene expression are believed to contribute to phenotypic differences. Emerging evidence has shown that microRNAs (miRNAs) are one of the key regulators of gene expression. However, past studies have focused on the miRNA target genes and used loss- or gain-of-function approach that may not reflect natural association between miRNA and mRNAs.
To examine miRNA regulatory effect on global gene expression under endogenous condition, we performed pair-wise correlation coefficient analysis on expression levels of 366 miRNAs and 14,174 messenger RNAs (mRNAs) in 90 immortalized lymphoblastoid cell lines, and observed significant correlations between the two species of RNA transcripts. We identified a total of 7,207 significantly correlated miRNA-mRNA pairs (false discovery rate q<0.01). Of those, 4,085 pairs showed positive correlations while 3,122 pairs showed negative correlations. Gene ontology analyses on the miRNA-correlated genes revealed significant enrichments in several biological processes related to cell cycle, cell communication and signal transduction. Individually, each of three miRNAs (miR-331, -98 and -33b) demonstrated significant correlation with the genes in cell cycle-related biological processes, which is consistent with important role of miRNAs in cell cycle regulation.
This study demonstrates feasibility of using naturally expressed transcript profiles to identify endogenous correlation between miRNA and miRNA. By applying this genome-wide approach, we have identified thousands of miRNA-correlated genes and revealed potential role of miRNAs in several important cellular functions. The study results along with accompanying data sets will provide a wealth of high-throughput data to further evaluate the miRNA-regulated genes and eventually in phenotypic variations of human populations.
The developments of high-throughput genotyping technologies, which enable the simultaneous genotyping of hundreds of thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) have the potential to increase the benefits of genetic epidemiology studies. Although the enhanced resolution of these platforms increases the chance of interrogating functional SNPs that are themselves causative or in linkage disequilibrium with causal SNPs, commonly used single SNP-association approaches suffer from serious multiple hypothesis testing problems and provide limited insights into combinations of loci that may contribute to complex diseases. Drawing inspiration from Gene Set Enrichment Analysis developed for gene expression data, we have developed a method, named GLOSSI (Gene-loci Set Analysis), that integrates prior biological knowledge into the statistical analysis of genotyping data to test the association of a group of SNPs (loci-set) with complex disease phenotypes. The most significant loci-sets can be used to formulate hypotheses from a functional viewpoint that can be validated experimentally.
In a simulation study, GLOSSI showed sufficient power to detect loci-sets with less than 10% of SNPs having moderate-to-large effect sizes and intermediate minor allele frequency values. When applied to a biological dataset where no single SNP-association was found in a previous study, GLOSSI was able to identify several loci-sets that are significantly related to blood pressure response to an antihypertensive drug.
GLOSSI is valuable for association of SNPs at multiple genetic loci with complex disease phenotypes. In contrast to methods based on the Kolmogorov-Smirnov statistic, the approach is parametric and only utilizes information from within the interrogated loci-set. It properly accounts for dependency among SNPs and allows the testing of loci-sets of any size.