We evaluated the pathogenicity of the G1961E mutation in the ABCA4 gene, and present the range of retinal phenotypes associated with this mutation in homozygosity in a patient cohort with ABCA4-associated phenotypes.
Patients were enrolled from the ABCA4 disease database at Columbia University or by inquiry from collaborating physicians. Only patients homozygous for the G1961E mutation were enrolled. The entire ABCA4 gene open reading frame, including all exons and flanking intronic sequences, was sequenced in all patients. Phenotype data were obtained from clinical history and examination, fundus photography, infrared imaging, fundus autofluorescence, fluorescein angiography, and spectral domain-optical coherence tomography. Additional functional data were obtained using the full-field electroretinogram, and static or kinetic perimetry.
We evaluated 12 patients homozygous for the G1961E mutation. All patients had evidence of retinal pathology consistent with the range of phenotypes observed in ABCA4 disease. The latest age of onset was recorded at 64 years, in a patient diagnosed initially with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Of 6 patients in whom severe structural (with/without functional) fundus changes were detected, 5 had additional, heterozygous or homozygous, variants detected in the ABCA4 gene.
Homozygous G1961E mutation in ABCA4 results in a range of retinal pathology. The phenotype usually is at the milder end of the disease spectrum, with severe phenotypes linked to the presence of additional ABCA4 variants. Our report also highlights that milder, late-onset Stargardt disease may be confused with AMD.
There is still debate as to the pathogenicity of homozygous G1961E mutation in the ABCA4 gene. We present 12 patients, homozygous for G1961E mutation, with retinal disease. In 6 cases, additional mutations were detected in ABCA4 and tended to yield more severe disease phenotypes.
HSulf-1 modulates the sulfation states of heparan sulfate proteoglycans critical for heparin binding growth factor signaling. In the present study, we demonstrate that HSulf-1 is transcriptionally deregulated under hypoxia in breast cancer cell lines. Knockdown of HIF-1α rescued HSulf-1 downregulation imposed by hypoxia, both at the RNA and protein levels. Chromatin immunoprecipitation with HIF-1α and HIF-2α antibodies confirmed recruitment of HIF-α proteins to the two functional hypoxia responsive elements on the native HSulf-1 promoter. HSulf-1 depletion in breast cancer cells resulted in an increased and sustained bFGF2 signaling, promoted cell migration and invasion under hypoxic conditions. Additionally, FGFR2 depletion in HSulf-1 silenced breast cancer cells attenuated hypoxia mediated cell invasion. Immunohistochemical analysis of 53 invasive ductal carcinomas and its autologous metastatic lesions revealed an inverse correlation of expression of HSulf-1 to CAIX in both the primary tumors (p=>0.0198) and in metastatic lesions (p=>0.0067) respectively, by χ2 test. Finally, HSulf-1 expression levels in breast tumors by RNA in situ hybridization showed that high HSulf-1 expression is associated with increased disease-free and overall survival (p= >0.03 and p=>0.0001 respectively). Collectively, these results reveal an important link between loss of HSulf-1 under hypoxic microenvironment and increased growth factor signaling, cell migration and invasion.
The treatment of human cancer has been seriously hampered for decades by resistance to chemotherapeutic drugs. Mechanisms underlying this resistance are far from being entirely known. A very efficient mechanism of tumor resistance to drugs is related to the modification of tumour microenvironment through changes in the extracellular and intracellular pH. The acidification of tumor microenvironment depends on proton pumps that actively pump protons outside the cells, mostly to avoid intracellular acidification. In fact, we have shown in pre-clinical settings as pre-treatment with proton-pumps inhibitors (PPI) increase tumor cell and tumor responsiveness to chemotherapeutics. In this study pet with spontaneously occurring cancer proven refractory to conventional chemotherapy have been recruited in a compassionate study.
Thirty-four companion animals (27 dogs and 7 cats) were treated adding to their chemotherapy protocols the pump inhibitor lansoprazole at high dose, as suggested by pre-clinical experiments. Their responses have been compared to those of seventeen pets (10 dogs and 7 cats) whose owners did not pursue any other therapy than continuing the currently ongoing chemotherapy protocols.
The drug was overall well tolerated, with only four dogs experiencing side effects due to gastric hypochlorhydria consisting with vomiting and or diarrhea. In terms of overall response twenty-three pets out of 34 had partial or complete responses (67.6%) the remaining patients experienced no response or progressive disease however most owners reported improved quality of life in most of the non responders. On the other hand, only three animals in the control group (17%) experienced short lived partial responses (1-3 months duration) while all the others died of progressive disease within two months.
high dose proton pump inhibitors have been shown to induce reversal of tumor chemoresistance as well as improvement of the quality of life in pets with down staged cancer and in the majority of the treated animals PPI were well tolerated. Further studies are warranted to assess the efficacy of this strategy in patients with advanced cancers in companion animals as well as in humans.
chemotherapy; lansoprazole; mitoxantrone; carboplatin; proton pump
The cell cycle is the cascade of events that allows a growing cell to duplicate all its components and split into two daughter cells. Cell cycle progression is mediated by the activation of a highly conserved family of protein kinases, the cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs). CDKs are also regulated by related proteins called cdk inhibitors grouped into two families: the INK4 inhibitors (p16, p15, p19, and p18) and the Cip/Kip inhibitors (p21, p27, and p53). Several studies report the importance of cell-cycle proteins in the pathogenesis and the prognosis of lung cancer. This paper will review the most recent data from the literature about the regulation of cell cycle. Finally, based essentially on the data generated in our laboratory, the expression, the diagnostic, and prognostic significance of cell-cycle molecules in lung cancer will be examined.
Cancer is one of the most difficult current health challenges, being responsible for millions of deaths yearly. Systemic chemotherapy is the most common therapeutic approach, and the prevailing orientation calls for the administration of the maximum tolerated dose; however, considerable limitations exist including toxicities to healthy tissues and low achievable drug concentrations at tumor sites. Electrochemotherapy (ECT) is a tumor treatment that combines the systemic or local delivery of anticancer drugs with the application of permeabilizing electric pulses. In this article we evaluate the capability of ECT to allow the use of cisplatin despite its high toxicity in a spontaneous feline model of soft tissue sarcoma.
A cohort of sixty-four cats with incompletely excised sarcomas were treated with cisplatin-based adjuvant ECT and monitored for side effects. Their response was compared to that of fourteen cats treated with surgery alone.
The toxicities were minimal and mostly treated symptomatically. ECT resulted in increased local control (median not reached at the time of writing) with a mean time to recurrence of 666 days versus 180 of controls.
We conclude that ECT is a safe and efficacious therapy for solid tumors; its use may be considered as part of strategies for the reintroduction of drugs with a narrow therapeutic index in the clinical protocols.
Diabetes is associated with an increased risk of heart failure, in part explained by endoplasmic reticulum stress and apoptosis. Protein disulfide isomerase (PDI) prevents stressed cardiomyocytes apoptosis. We hypothesized that diabetes impairs PDI function by an alteration in its oxido-reductive state. Myocardial biopsies harvested from the anterolateral left ventricular wall from diabetic (n = 7) and nondiabetic (n = 8) patients were used to assess PDI expression and cardiomyocyte death. A mouse model of diabetes (streptozotocin injection, 130 mg/mL) was used to study PDI expression and its redox state after ischemia/reperfusion injury induced by 30-min occlusion of the left anterior coronary artery followed by reperfusion. Transthoracic echocardiography was performed to assess cardiac remodeling after 1 wk. Western blot analysis was used to analyze PDI expression, and methoxy-polyethyleneglycol-maleimide was used to assess its redox state. Dehydroascorbate (DHA) administration was used to restore the PDI redox state. Diabetic patients had a greater number of transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL)-positive cells than nondiabetic patients despite a greater myocardial PDI expression suggesting altered PDI function. Diabetic mice had a worse postinfarction remodeling associated with an altered PDI redox state. DHA treatment restored functional PDI redox state and ameliorated post–myocardial infarction remodeling. An increase in PDI levels with a paradoxical decrease of its active form occurs in the diabetic heart after ischemia and may explain the lack of protective effects of PDI in diabetes. Restoration of PDI redox state prevents adverse remodeling. The potential significance of these findings deserves to be validated in a clinical setting.
Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a rare, highly aggressive tumor, associated to asbestos exposure. To date no chemotherapy regimen for MM has proven to be definitively curative, and new therapies for MM treatment need to be developed. We have previously shown in vivo that piroxicam/cisplatin combined treatment in MM, specifically acts on cell cycle regulation triggering apoptosis, with survival increase.
We analyzed, at molecular level, the apoptotic increase caused by piroxicam/cisplatin treatment in MM cell lines. By means of genome wide analyses, we analyzed transcriptional gene deregulation both after the single piroxicam or cisplatin and the combined treatment. Here we show that apoptotic increase following combined treatment is mediated by p21, since apoptotic increase in piroxicam/cisplatin combined treatment is abolished upon p21 silencing.
Piroxicam/cisplatin combined treatment determines an apoptosis increase in MM cells, which is dependent on the p21 expression. The results provided suggest that piroxicam/cisplatin combination might be tested in clinical settings in tumor specimens that express p21.
Nucleic acids designed to modulate the expression of target proteins remain a promising therapeutic strategy in several diseases, including cancer. However, clinical success is limited by the lack of efficient intracellular delivery. In this study we evaluated whether electroporation could increase the delivery of antisense oligodeoxynucleotides against bcl-2 (G3139) as well as the efficacy of combination chemotherapy in human melanoma xenografts.
Melanoma-bearing nude mice were treated i.v. with G3139 and/or cisplatin (DDP) followed by the application of trains of electric pulses to tumors. Western blot, immunohistochemistry and real-time PCR were performed to analyze protein and mRNA expression. The effect of electroporation on muscles was determined by histology, while tumor apoptosis and the proliferation index were analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Antisense oligodeoxynucleotides tumor accumulation was measured by FACS and confocal microscopy.
The G3139/Electroporation combined therapy produced a significant inhibition of tumor growth (TWI, more than 50%) accompanied by a marked tumor re-growth delay (TRD, about 20 days). The efficacy of this treatment was due to the higher G3139 uptake in tumor cells which led to a marked down-regulation of bcl-2 protein expression. Moreover, the G3139/EP combination treatment resulted in an enhanced apoptotic index and a decreased proliferation rate of tumors. Finally, an increased tumor response was observed after treatment with the triple combination G3139/DDP/EP, showing a TWI of about 75% and TRD of 30 days.
These results demonstrate that electroporation is an effective strategy to improve the delivery of antisense oligodeoxynucleotides within tumor cells in vivo and it may be instrumental in optimizing the response of melanoma to chemotherapy. The high response rate observed in this study suggest to apply this strategy for the treatment of melanoma patients.
This study describes a pivotal clinical trial of a new minimally invasive cosmetic procedure for facial rejuvenation and for the treatment of scars and wrinkles.
The procedure consisted of a combination of techniques such as fillers, biorevitalization, peeling, and intradermal radiofrequency, emitted from a new device denominated by Spherofill Medical Plus (SMP; Spherofill MD, PromoItalia Group S.p.A., Pozzuoli, Italy), for treating cutaneous regeneration, depressions, and striae. One hundred and twelve patients, divided into five groups, were treated.
The results produced were statistically analyzed and resulted in significant and long-lasting effects for facial rejuvenation. Indeed, the analysis of the Global Aesthetic Improvement Scale (GAIS) scores in the five groups demonstrated statistically significant results between 3 and 9 months after the treatments.
Evaluating the patients included in the study, it is possible to conclude that the treatment with SMP represents a safe and efficient solution for the treatment of wrinkles, acne lesions, striae, and of degenerated tissues caused by aging.
biorevitalization; facial rejuvenation; fillers; peeling; radiofrequency; soft-tissue augmentation
Cardiac remodeling after acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is characterised by molecular and cellular mechanisms involving both left (LV) and right ventricular (RV) walls. Cardiomyoycte apoptosis in the peri-infarct and remote LV myocardium plays a central role in cardiac remodeling. Whether apoptosis also occurs in the right ventricle of patients with ischemic heart disease has not been investigated. Aim of the current study was to investigate the presence of cardiomyocyte apoptosis in the right ventricle in patients with AMI. We assessed the number of apoptotic cardiomyocytes by multiple samplings in the LV and RV walls of 12 patients selected at autopsy who died 4 to 42 days after AMI. Five patients without cardiac disease were also selected at autopsy as controls. Apoptotic rates were calculated from the number of cardiomyocytes showing double positive staining for in situ end-labeling of DNA fragmentation – TUNEL – and for activated caspase-3. Potentially false positive results (DNA synthesis and RNA splicing) were excluded from the cell counts. The apoptotic rate in the RV in patients with AMI was significantly higher than in control hearts (0.8% [0.3–1.0] vs 0.01% [0.01–0.03], P<0.001). RV apoptosis was significantly correlated with parameters of global adverse remodeling such as cardiac diameter-to-LV free wall thickness (R=+0.57, P=0.050). RV apoptosis was significantly higher in 5 cases (42%) with infarct involving the ventricular septum and an adjacent a small area of the RV walls (1.0% [0.8–2.2] vs 0.5% [0.2–1.0], P=0.048; P<0.001 vs controls). The association between apoptotic rate in RV and cardiac remodeling was apparent even after exclusion of cases with RV AMI involvement (R=+0.82, P=0.023 for diameter-to-LV wall thickness ratio; and R=−0.91, P=0.002 for RV free wall thickness). In conclusion, patients with cardiac remodeling after AMI have a significant increase in RV apoptosis even when ischemic involvement of the RV wall is not apparent.
apoptosis; heart failure; right ventricle; myocardial infarction; remodeling
To investigate the correlation between the expression of apoptosis‐related markers and prognosis in malignant epithelial tumours of the lacrimal gland.
Materials and Methods
Series of cases.
Twenty one cases with malignant epithelial tumours of the lacrimal gland. Histological diagnosis was re‐examined and blocks selected were evaluated for the following parameters: incidence of apoptosis with TUNEL assay, expression of p53 and Bcl‐2 using monoclonal antibody. Predictors factors for survival, local recurrence and cumulative probability of death were statistically evaluated.
Re‐eximination of the 21 specimens was as follow: 11 adenoid cystic carcinomas, 4 mucoepidermoid carcinomas, 3 squamous cell carcinomas and 3 adenocarcinomas. Eleven of the 21 patients (53%) died during the follow‐up period (4–192 months; mean 71). Bcl‐2 staining >6% was significantly correlated with the death of patients. A statistically significant positive relationship for TUNEL and p53, and an inverse correlation for Bcl‐2 staining, was demonstrated with overall survival.
The correlation with survival of apoptotic index, p53 and Bcl‐2 expression suggest the more tumour cells go in apoptosis, upregulating p53 and down‐regulating Bcl‐2, the better the survival of patients. This study establishes a role of apoptosis‐regulatory proteins in the pathogenesis of malignant epithelial lacrimal gland tumours, and supports the hypothesis that evaluation of the expression of apoptosis‐related markers in these tumours may provide a prognostic tool.
The majority of cancer patients experience dramatic weight loss, due to cachexia and consisting of skeletal muscle and fat tissue wasting. Cachexia is a negative prognostic factor, interferes with therapy and worsens the patients' quality of life by affecting muscle function. Mice bearing ectopically-implanted C26 colon carcinoma are widely used as an experimental model of cancer cachexia. As part of the search for novel clinical and basic research applications for this experimental model, we characterized novel cellular and molecular features of C26-bearing mice.
A fragment of C26 tumor was subcutaneously grafted in isogenic BALB/c mice. The mass growth and proliferation rate of the tumor were analyzed. Histological and cytofluorometric analyses were used to assess cell death, ploidy and differentiation of the tumor cells. The main features of skeletal muscle atrophy, which were highlighted by immunohistochemical and electron microscopy analyses, correlated with biochemical alterations. Muscle force and resistance to fatigue were measured and analyzed as major functional deficits of the cachectic musculature.
We found that the C26 tumor, ectopically implanted in mice, is an undifferentiated carcinoma, which should be referred to as such and not as adenocarcinoma, a common misconception. The C26 tumor displays aneuploidy and histological features typical of transformed cells, incorporates BrdU and induces severe weight loss in the host, which is largely caused by muscle wasting. The latter appears to be due to proteasome-mediated protein degradation, which disrupts the sarcomeric structure and muscle fiber-extracellular matrix interactions. A pivotal functional deficit of cachectic muscle consists in increased fatigability, while the reported loss of tetanic force is not statistically significant following normalization for decreased muscle fiber size.
We conclude, on the basis of the definition of cachexia, that ectopically-implanted C26 carcinoma represents a well standardized experimental model for research on cancer cachexia. We wish to point out that scientists using the C26 model to study cancer and those using the same model to study cachexia may be unaware of each other's works because they use different keywords; we present strategies to eliminate this gap and discuss the benefits of such an exchange of knowledge.
Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive tumor that is resistant to conventional modes of treatment with chemotherapy, surgery or radiation. Research into the molecular pathways involved in the development of MM should yield information that will guide therapeutic decisions. Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) are involved in the carcinogenesis of MM. Combination of COX-2 and EGFR inhibitors, therefore, could be an effective strategy for reducing cell growth in those lines expressing the two molecular markers.
In order to verify the effect of COX-2 and EGFR inhibitors, five MM cell lines NCI-2452, MPP89, Ist-Mes-1, Ist-Mes-2 and MSTO-211 were characterized for COX-2 and EGFR and then treated with respective inhibitors (rofecoxib and gefitinib) alone and in combination. Only MPP89, Ist-Mes-1 and Ist-Mes-2 were sensitive to rofecoxib and showed growth-inhibition upon gefitinib treatment. The combination of two drugs demonstrated synergistic effects on cell killing only in Ist-Mes-2, the cell line that was more sensitive to gefitinib and rofecoxib alone. Down-regulation of COX-2, EGFR, p-EGFR and up-regulation of p21 and p27 were found in Ist-Mes-2, after treatment with single agents and in combination. In contrast, association of two drugs resulted in antagonistic effect in Ist-Mes-1 and MPP89. In these cell lines after rofecoxib exposition, only an evident reduction of p-AKT was observed. No change in p-AKT in Ist-Mes-1 and MPP89 was observed after treatment with gefitinib alone and in combination with rofecoxib.
Gefitinib and rofecoxib exert cell type-specific effects that vary between different MM cells. Total EGFR expression and downstream signalling does not correlate with gefitinib sensitivity. These data suggest that the effect of gefitinib can be potentiated by rofecoxib in MM cell lines where AKT is not activated.
HtrA1 belongs to a family of serine proteases found in organisms ranging from bacteria to humans. Bacterial HtrA1 (DegP) is a heat shock-induced protein that behaves as a chaperone at low temperature and as a protease at high temperature to help remove unfolded proteins during heat shock. In contrast to bacterial HtrA1, little is known about the function of human HtrA1. Here, we report the first evidence that human HtrA1 is a microtubule-associated protein and modulates microtubule stability and cell motility. Intracellular HtrA1 is localized to microtubules in a PDZ (PSD95, Dlg, ZO1) domain-dependent, nocodazole-sensitive manner. During microtubule assembly, intracellular HtrA associates with centrosomes and newly polymerized microtubules. In vitro, purified HtrA1 promotes microtubule assembly. Moreover, HtrA1 cosediments and copurifies with microtubules. Purified HtrA1 associates with purified α- and β-tubulins, and immunoprecipitation of endogenous HtrA1 results in coprecipitation of α-, β-, and γ-tubulins. Finally, downregulation of HtrA1 promotes cell motility, whereas enhanced expression of HtrA1 attenuates cell motility. These results offer an original identification of HtrA1 as a microtubule-associated protein and provide initial mechanistic insights into the role of HtrA1 in theregulation of cell motility by modulating microtubule stability.
Fibrous histiocytoma is a benign soft tissue tumour arising as a fibrous mass everywhere in the human body. The involvement of the oral cavity is rare. We report two cases of benign fibrous histiocytoma that localized in the oral cavity. The clinical and histological features of the lesion are reported. Finally, a literature revision of this pathology at the level of the oral cavity is reported.
The goal of our study was to molecularly dissect mesothelioma tumour pathways by mean of microarray technologies in order to identify new tumour biomarkers that could be used as early diagnostic markers and possibly as specific molecular therapeutic targets.
We performed Affymetrix HGU133A plus 2.0 microarray analysis, containing probes for about 39,000 human transcripts, comparing 9 human pleural mesotheliomas with 4 normal pleural specimens. Stringent statistical feature selection detected a set of differentially expressed genes that have been further evaluated to identify potential biomarkers to be used in early diagnostics. Selected genes were confirmed by RT-PCR. As reported by other mesothelioma profiling studies, most of genes are involved in G2/M transition. Our list contains several genes previously described as prognostic classifier. Furthermore, we found novel genes, never associated before to mesotheliom that could be involved in tumour progression. Notable is the identification of MMP-14, a member of matrix metalloproteinase family. In a cohort of 70 mesothelioma patients, we found by a multivariate Cox regression analysis, that the only parameter influencing overall survival was expression of MMP14. The calculated relative risk of death in MM patients with low MMP14 expression was significantly lower than patients with high MMp14 expression (P = 0.002).
Based on the results provided, this molecule could be viewed as a new and effective therapeutic target to test for the cure of mesothelioma.
New generations of image-based diagnostic machines are based on digital technologies for data acquisition; consequently, the diffusion of digital archiving systems for diagnostic exams preservation and cataloguing is rapidly increasing. To overcome the limits of current state of art text-based access methods, we have developed a novel content-based search engine for dermoscopic images to support clinical decision making.
To this end, we have enrolled, from 2004 to 2008, 3415 caucasian patients and collected 24804 dermoscopic images corresponding to 20491 pigmented lesions with known pathology. The images were acquired with a well defined dermoscopy system and stored to disk in 24-bit per pixel TIFF format using interactive software developed in C++, in order to create a digital archive.
The analysis system of the images consists in the extraction of the low-level representative features which permits the retrieval of similar images in terms of colour and texture from the archive, by using a hierarchical multi-scale computation of the Bhattacharyya distance of all the database images representation with respect to the representation of user submitted (query).
The system is able to locate, retrieve and display dermoscopic images similar in appearance to one that is given as a query, using a set of primitive features not related to any specific diagnostic method able to visually characterize the image. Similar search engine could find possible usage in all sectors of diagnostic imaging, or digital signals, which could be supported by the information available in medical archives.
The treatment of soft tissue tumors needs the coordinated adoption of surgery with radiation therapy and eventually, chemotherapy. The radiation therapy (delivered with a linear accelerator) can be preoperative, intraoperative, or postoperative. In selected patients adjuvant brachytherapy can be adopted. The goal of these associations is to achieve tumor control while maximally preserving the normal tissues from side effects. Unfortunately, the occurrence of local and distant complications is still elevated. Electrochemotherapy is a novel technique that combines the administration of anticancer agents to the application of permeabilizing pulses in order to increase the uptake of antitumor molecules. While its use in humans is still confined to the treatment of cutaneous neoplasms or the palliation of skin tumor metastases, in veterinary oncology this approach is rapidly becoming a primary treatment. This review summarizes the recent progresses in preclinical oncology and their possible transfer to humans.
Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors are promising new epi-drugs, but the presence of both class I and class II enzymes in HDAC complexes precludes a detailed elucidation of the individual HDAC functions. By using the class II-specific HDAC inhibitor MC1568, we separated class I- and class II-dependent effects and defined the roles of class II enzymes in muscle differentiation in cultured cells and in vivo. MC1568 arrests myogenesis by (i) decreasing myocyte enhancer factor 2D (MEF2D) expression, (ii) by stabilizing the HDAC4–HDAC3–MEF2D complex, and (iii) paradoxically, by inhibiting differentiation-induced MEF2D acetylation. In vivo MC1568 shows an apparent tissue-selective HDAC inhibition. In skeletal muscle and heart, MC1568 inhibits the activity of HDAC4 and HDAC5 without affecting HDAC3 activity, thereby leaving MEF2–HDAC complexes in a repressed state. Our results suggest that HDAC class II-selective inhibitors might have a therapeutic potential for the treatment of muscle and heart diseases.
differentiation; epigenetic drugs; HDAC inhibitor; signal transduction
Endometriosis is a gynecological disease defined by the histological presence of endometrial glands and stroma outside the uterine cavity. Women with endometriosis have an increased risk of different types of malignancies, especially ovarian cancer and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Though there are several theories, researchers remain unsure as to the definitive cause of endometriosis. Our objective was to test the validity of the theory of müllerianosis for endometriosis, that is the misplacing of primitive endometrial tissue along the migratory pathway of foetal organogenesis
We have collected at autopsy 36 human female foetuses at different gestational age. We have performed a morphological and immunohistochemical study (expression of oestrogen receptor and CA125) on the pelvic organs of the 36 foetuses included en-block and totally analyzed.
In 4 out of 36 foetuses we found presence of misplaced endometrium in five different ectopic sites: in the recto-vaginal septum, in the proximity of the Douglas pouch, in the mesenchimal tissue close to the posterior wall of the uterus, in the rectal tube at the level of muscularis propria, and in the wall of the uterus. All these sites are common location of endometriosis in women.
We propose that a cause of endometriosis is the dislocation of primitive endometrial tissue outside the uterine cavity during organogenesis.
Studies on activated cell-signaling pathways responsible for neoplastic transformation are numerous in solid tumors and in adult leukemias. Despite of positive results in the evolution of pediatric hematopoietic neoplasias, there are some high-risk subtypes at worse prognosis. The aim of this study was to asses the expression and activation status of crucial proteins involved in cell-signaling pathways in order to identify molecular alterations responsible for the proliferation and/or escape from apoptosis of leukemic blasts. The quantitative and qualitative expression and activation of Erk-1, c-Jun, Caspase8, and Gadd45a was analyzed, by immunocytochemical (ICC) and western blotting methods, in bone marrow blasts of 72 patients affected by acute myeloid leukemia (AML), T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and stage IV non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL). We found an upregulation of Erk-1, Caspase8, c-Jun, and Gadd45a proteins with a constitutive activation in 95.8%, 91.7%, 86.2%, 83.4% of analyzed specimens, respectively. It is worth noting that all AML patients showed an upregulation of all proteins studied and the high expression of GADD45a was associated to the lowest DFS median (p = 0.04). On univariate analysis, only Erk-1 phosphorylation status was found to be correlated with a significantly shorter 5-years DFS in all disease subgroups (p = 0.033) and the lowest DFS median in ALL/NHL subgroup (p = 0.04). Moreover, the simultaneous activation of multiple kinases, as we found for c-Jun and Erk-1 (r = 0.26; p = 0.025), might synergistically enhance survival and proliferation potential of leukemic cells. These results demonstrate an involvement of these proteins in survival of blast cells and, consequently, on relapse percentages of the different subgroups of patients.
The RacGAP molecule α2-chimaerin is implicated in neuronal signaling pathways required for precise guidance of developing corticospinal axons. We now demonstrate that a variant of Duane’s retraction syndrome, a congenital eye movement disorder in which affected individuals show aberrant development of axon projections to the extraocular muscles, can result from gain-of-function heterozygous missense mutations in CHN1 that increase α2-chimaerin RacGAP activity in vitro. A subset of mutations enhances α2-chimaerin membrane translocation and/or α2-chimaerin’s previously unrecognized ability to form a complex with itself. In ovo expression of mutant CHN1 alters the development of ocular motor axons. These data demonstrate that human CHN1 mutations can hyperactivate α2-chimaerin and result in aberrant cranial motor neuron development.
Combined malignant naevi are characterised pathologically by the association of a melanoma with one or more different types of benign melanocytic naevi in a single lesion.
We show here a case of malignant combined naevus made up of a blue naevus and a melanoma, presenting as a slowly progressing and asymptomatic pigmented lesion on the trunk of a 35-year-old man. Dermoscopic examination was not conclusive for a malignant lesion, showing only an atypical brown pigment network. The definitive diagnosis was reached only at the hystopathological examination.
This finding suggests that combined naevi should be always excised and histologically examined to achieve a correct diagnosis and avoid risk of misclassification.
Sticker's sarcoma (also known as transmissible venereal tumor) is a horizontally transmitted neoplasm of the dog, that is passed with coitus. It is a locally aggressive tumor with a low tendency to metastatic spread. The most common locations are the genitals, the nose, the perianal area. Standard treatment consists with chemotherapy with vincristine, however other therapies such as, cryotherapy, immunotherapy or, in selected cases, radiation therapy, have been reported. In this article we describe the outcome of a small cohort of canine patients, with chemotherapy resistant transmissible venereal tumor (TVT), treated with bleomycin selectively driven by trains of biphasic pulses (electrochemotherapy). Three canine patients, with refractory TVT, entered the study and received two sessions of ECT under sedation. The pets had local injection of bleomycin at the concentration of 1.5 mg/ml and five minutes after the chemotherapy, trains of 8 biphasic electric pulses lasting 50 + 50 μs each, with 1 ms interpulse intervals, were delivered by means of modified caliper or, for difficult districts, through paired needle electrode. All the patients responded to the treatment and are still in remission at different times. Electrochemotherapy appears as a safe and efficacious modality for the treatment of TVT and warrants further investigations.
Dermoid cysts are rare congenital lesions derived from pluripotential cells.
We present a case of a female patient aged 30 years presenting for a lesion of the mandibula incidentally seen on a routine panoramic radiograph obtained for dental care. The instrumental, clinical and histological characteristics of the lesion are reported. Finally, a bibliographic revision of this pathology at the level of the oral cavity is reported.
Dermoid cysts must be considered in the differential diagnosis of mandibula's lesions.