Neuroblastoma is one of the most genomically heterogeneous childhood malignances studied to date, and the molecular events that occur during the course of the disease are not fully understood. Genomic studies in neuroblastoma have showed only a few recurrent mutations and a low somatic mutation burden. However, none of these studies has examined the mutations arising during the course of disease, nor have they systemically examined the expression of mutant genes. Here we performed genomic analyses on tumors taken during a 3.5 years disease course from a neuroblastoma patient (bone marrow biopsy at diagnosis, adrenal primary tumor taken at surgical resection, and a liver metastasis at autopsy). Whole genome sequencing of the index liver metastasis identified 44 non-synonymous somatic mutations in 42 genes (0.85 mutation/MB) and a large hemizygous deletion in the ATRX gene which has been recently reported in neuroblastoma. Of these 45 somatic alterations, 15 were also detected in the primary tumor and bone marrow biopsy, while the other 30 were unique to the index tumor, indicating accumulation of de novo mutations during therapy. Furthermore, transcriptome sequencing on the 3 tumors demonstrated only 3 out of the 15 commonly mutated genes (LPAR1, GATA2, and NUFIP1) had high level of expression of the mutant alleles, suggesting potential oncogenic driver roles of these mutated genes. Among them, the druggable G-protein coupled receptor LPAR1 was highly expressed in all tumors. Cells expressing the LPAR1 R163W mutant demonstrated a significantly increased motility through elevated Rho signaling, but had no effect on growth. Therefore, this study highlights the need for multiple biopsies and sequencing during progression of a cancer and combinatorial DNA and RNA sequencing approach for systematic identification of expressed driver mutations.
Rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations threaten coral reefs globally by causing ocean acidification (OA) and warming. Yet, the combined effects of elevated pCO2 and temperature on coral physiology and resilience remain poorly understood. While coral calcification and energy reserves are important health indicators, no studies to date have measured energy reserve pools (i.e., lipid, protein, and carbohydrate) together with calcification under OA conditions under different temperature scenarios. Four coral species, Acropora millepora, Montipora monasteriata, Pocillopora damicornis, Turbinaria reniformis, were reared under a total of six conditions for 3.5 weeks, representing three pCO2 levels (382, 607, 741 µatm), and two temperature regimes (26.5, 29.0°C) within each pCO2 level. After one month under experimental conditions, only A. millepora decreased calcification (−53%) in response to seawater pCO2 expected by the end of this century, whereas the other three species maintained calcification rates even when both pCO2 and temperature were elevated. Coral energy reserves showed mixed responses to elevated pCO2 and temperature, and were either unaffected or displayed nonlinear responses with both the lowest and highest concentrations often observed at the mid-pCO2 level of 607 µatm. Biweekly feeding may have helped corals maintain calcification rates and energy reserves under these conditions. Temperature often modulated the response of many aspects of coral physiology to OA, and both mitigated and worsened pCO2 effects. This demonstrates for the first time that coral energy reserves are generally not metabolized to sustain calcification under OA, which has important implications for coral health and bleaching resilience in a high-CO2 world. Overall, these findings suggest that some corals could be more resistant to simultaneously warming and acidifying oceans than previously expected.
Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) is the most common childhood soft tissue sarcoma. Despite advances in modern therapy, patients with relapsed or metastatic disease have a very poor clinical prognosis. Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor 4 (FGFR4) is a cell surface tyrosine kinase receptor that is involved in normal myogenesis and muscle regeneration, but not commonly expressed in differentiated muscle tissues. Amplification and mutational activation of FGFR4 has been reported in RMS and promotes tumor progression. Therefore, FGFR4 is a tractable therapeutic target for patients with RMS. In this study, we used a chimeric Ba/F3 TEL-FGFR4 construct to test five tyrosine kinase inhibitors reported to specifically inhibit FGFRs in the nanomolar range. We found ponatinib (AP24534) to be the most potent FGFR4 inhibitor with an IC50 in the nanomolar range. Ponatinib inhibited the growth of RMS cells expressing wild-type or mutated FGFR4 through increased apoptosis. Phosphorylation of wild-type and mutated FGFR4 as well as its downstream target STAT3 was also suppressed by ponatinib. Finally, ponatinib treatment inhibited tumor growth in a RMS mouse model expressing mutated FGFR4. Therefore, our data suggests that ponatinib is a potentially effective therapeutic agent for RMS tumors that are driven by a dysregulated FGFR4 signaling pathway.
The widespread use of clopidogrel alone or in combination with aspirin may result in gastrointestinal mucosal injury, clinically represented as recurrent ulceration and bleeding complications. Our recent work suggested that clopidogrel significantly induced human gastric epithelial cell (GES-1) apoptosis and disrupted gastric mucosal barrier, and that a p38 MAPK inhibitor could attenuate such injury. However, their exact mechanisms are largely unknown.
The GES-1 cells were used as a model system, the effects of clopidogrel on the whole gene expression profile were evaluated by human gene expression microarray and gene ontology analysis, changes of the mRNA and protein expression were determined by real-time PCR and Western blot analysis, and cell viability and apoptosis were measured by MTT assay and flow cytometry analysis, respectively.
Gene microarray analysis identified 79 genes that were differentially expressed (P<0.05 and fold-change >3) when cells were treated with or without clopidogrel. Gene ontology analysis revealed that response to stress and cell apoptosis dysfunction were ranked in the top 10 cellular events being affected, and that the major components of endoplasmic reticulum stress-mediated apoptosis pathway – CHOP and TRIB3– were up-regulated in a concentration- and time-dependent manner when cells were treated with clopidogrel. Pathway analysis demonstrated that multiple MAPK kinases were phosphorylated in clopidogrel-treated GES-1 cells, but that only SB-203580 (a p38-specific MAPK inhibitor) attenuated cell apoptosis and CHOP over-expression, both of which were induced by clopidogrel.
Increased endoplasmic reticulum stress response is involved in clopidogrel-induced gastric mucosal injury, acting through p38 MAPK activation.
β-blockers (BBs) with different pharmacological properties may have heterogeneous effects on sympathetic nervous activity (SNA) and central aortic pressure (CAP), which are independent cardiovascular factors for hypertension. Hence, we analyzed the effects of bisoprolol and atenolol on SNA and CAP in hypertensive patients.
This was a prospective, randomized, controlled study in 109 never-treated hypertensive subjects randomized to bisoprolol (5 mg) or atenolol (50 mg) for 4–8 weeks. SNA, baroreflex sensitivity (BRS) and heart rate (HR) variability (HRV) were measured using power spectral analysis using a Finometer. CAP and related parameters were determined using the SphygmoCor device (pulse wave analysis).
Both drugs were similarly effective in reducing brachial BP. However, central systolic BP (−14±10 mm Hg vs −6±9 mm Hg; P<0.001) and aortic pulse pressure (−3±10 mm Hg vs +3±8 mm Hg; P<0.001) decreased more significantly with bisoprolol than with atenolol. The augmentation index at a HR of 75 bpm (AIxatHR75) was significantly decreased (29%±11% to 25%±12%; P = 0.026) in the bisoprolol group only. Furthermore, the change in BRS in the bisoprolol group (3.99±4.19 ms/mmHg) was higher than in the atenolol group (2.66±3.78 ms/mmHg), although not statistically significant (P>0.05). BRS was stable when RHR was controlled (RHR≤65 bpm), and the two treatments had similar effects on the low frequency/high frequency (HF) ratio and on HF.
BBs seem to have different effects on arterial distensibility and compliance in hypertensive subjects. Compared with atenolol, bisoprolol may have a better effect on CAP.
Structure-based modeling combined with rational drug design, and high throughput screening approaches offer significant potential for identifying and developing lead compounds with therapeutic potential. The present review focuses on these two approaches using explicit examples based on specific derivatives of Gossypol generated through rational design and applications of a cancer-specific-promoter derived from Progression Elevated Gene-3. The Gossypol derivative Sabutoclax (BI-97C1) displays potent anti-tumor activity against a diverse spectrum of human tumors. The model of the docked structure of Gossypol bound to Bcl-XL provided a virtual structure-activity-relationship where appropriate modifications were predicted on a rational basis. These structure-based studies led to the isolation of Sabutoclax, an optically pure isomer of Apogossypol displaying superior efficacy and reduced toxicity. These studies illustrate the power of combining structure-based modeling with rational design to predict appropriate derivatives of lead compounds to be empirically tested and evaluated for bioactivity. Another approach to cancer drug discovery utilizes a cancer-specific promoter as readouts of the transformed state. The promoter region of Progression Elevated Gene-3 is such a promoter with cancer-specific activity. The specificity of this promoter has been exploited as a means of constructing cancer terminator viruses that selectively kill cancer cells and as a systemic imaging modality that specifically visualizes in vivo cancer growth with no background from normal tissues. Screening of small molecule inhibitors that suppress the Progression Elevated Gene-3-promoter may provide relevant lead compounds for cancer therapy that can be combined with further structure-based approaches leading to the development of novel compounds for cancer therapy.
Progression Elevated Gene-3; Sabutoclax; Apogossypol; BI-97C1; Gossypol; AP-1; PEA3; ETV4; E1AF; c-fos; c-jun; Cancer Terminator Virus
Signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) 3 has been described as a “master regulator” of signaling pathways involved in the transition from low-grade glioma (LGG) to high-grade glioma (HGG). Although STAT3 is overexpressed in HGGs, it remains unclear whether its overexpression is sufficient to induce or promote the malignant progression of glioma. To characterize the effect of STAT3 expression on tumor progression in vivo, we expressed the STAT3 gene in glioneuronal progenitor cells in mice. STAT3 was expressed alone or concurrently with platelet-derived growth factor B (PDGFB), a well-described initiator of LGG. STAT3 alone was insufficient to induce tumor formation; however, coexpression of STAT3 with PDGFB in mice resulted in a significantly higher incidence of HGGs than PDGFB alone. The median symptomatic tumor latency in mice coexpressing STAT3 and PDGFB was significantly shorter, and mice that developed symptomatic tumors demonstrated significantly higher expression of phosphorylated STAT3 intratumorally. In HGGs, expression of STAT3 was associated with suppression of apoptosis and an increase in tumor cell proliferation. HGGs induced by STAT3 and PDGFB also displayed frequent foci of necrosis and microvascular proliferation. The expression of CD31 (a marker of endothelial proliferation) was significantly higher in tumors induced by coexpression of STAT3 and PDGFB. When mice injected with PDGFB and STAT3 were treated with a STAT3 inhibitor, median survival increased and the incidence of HGG and CD31 expression decreased significantly. These results demonstrate that STAT3 promotes the malignant progression of glioma. Inhibiting STAT3 expression mitigates tumor progression and improves survival, validating it as a therapeutic target.
glioma; mesenchymal; mouse model; proneural; STAT3
Neuroblastoma is a malignancy of the developing sympathetic nervous system that often presents with widespread metastatic disease, resulting in survival rates of less than 50%1. To determine the spectrum of somatic mutation in high-risk neuroblastoma, we studied 240 cases using a combination of whole exome, genome and transcriptome sequencing as part of the Therapeutically Applicable Research to Generate Effective Treatments (TARGET) initiative. Here we report a low median exonic mutation frequency of 0.60 per megabase (0.48 non-silent), and remarkably few recurrently mutated genes in these tumors. Genes with significant somatic mutation frequencies included ALK (9.2% of cases), PTPN11 (2.9%), ATRX (2.5%, an additional 7.1% had focal deletions), MYCN (1.7%, a recurrent p.Pro44Leu alteration), and NRAS (0.83%). Rare, potentially pathogenic germline variants were significantly enriched in ALK, CHEK2, PINK1, and BARD1. The relative paucity of recurrent somatic mutations in neuroblastoma challenges current therapeutic strategies reliant upon frequently altered oncogenic drivers.
Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide and has been linked to inflammation. Leukotriene B4 (LTB4) is synthesized from arachidonic acid via the 5-lipoxygenase pathway and is a potent chemoattractant for inflammatory cells. LTB4 was recently shown to be associated with the pathogenesis of inflammatory diseases, including cancer. Of the two known LTB4 receptors, BLT1 and BLT2, the biological roles of the low-affinity LTB4 receptor 2, BLT2, have only recently been elucidated. This review focuses on recent discoveries regarding BLT2 and its roles in cancer progression and the downstream signaling mechanisms of the BLT2-linked signaling cascade in cancer cells. We believe that these findings will facilitate the development of new cancer treatments.
Leukotriene B4 receptor 2 (BLT2); leukotriene B4; NADPH oxidase; reactive oxygen species; nuclear factor-kB; cancer progression
Polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs) play an important role in mediating the innate immune response after severe traumatic injury; however, the cellular proteome response to traumatic condition is still largely unknown.
We applied 2D-LC-MS/MS based shotgun proteomics to perform comparative proteome profiling of human PMNs from severe trauma patients and healthy controls.
A total of 197 out of ~2500 proteins (being identified with at least two peptides) were observed with significant abundance changes following the injury. The proteomics data were further compared with transcriptomics data for the same genes obtained from an independent patient cohort. The comparison showed that the protein abundance changes for the majority of proteins were consistent with the mRNA abundance changes in terms of directions of changes. Moreover, increased protein secretion was suggested as one of the mechanisms contributing to the observed discrepancy between protein and mRNA abundance changes. Functional analyses of the altered proteins showed that many of these proteins were involved in immune response, protein biosynthesis, protein transport, NRF2-mediated oxidative stress response, the ubiquitin-proteasome system, and apoptosis pathways.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Our data suggest increased neutrophil activation and inhibited neutrophil apoptosis in response to trauma. The study not only reveals an overall picture of functional neutrophil response to trauma at the proteome level, but also provides a rich proteomics data resource of trauma-associated changes in the neutrophil that will be valuable for further studies of the functions of individual proteins in PMNs.
human neutrophil; LC-MS/MS; Proteomics; Trauma; Genomics
Fibrosis in human diseases and animal models is associated with aberrant Wnt/β-catenin pathway activation. The regulation, activity, mechanism of action and significance of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in the context of systemic sclerosis (SSc) has not been characterized.
Expression of Wnt signaling pathway components in SSc skin biopsies was analyzed. The regulation of profibrotic responses by canonical Wnt/ß-catenin was examined in explanted human mesenchymal cells. Fibrotic responses were studied by proliferation, migration and gel contraction assays. The fate specification of subcutaneous preadipocytes by canonical Wnt signaling was evaluated.
Analysis of published genome-wide expression datasets revealed elevated expression of the Wnt receptor Fzd2 and the Wnt target Lef1, and decreased expression of Wnt antagonists Dkk2 and Wif1 in skin biopsies from subsets of dcSSc patients. Immunohistochemistry showed increased nuclear β-catenin expression in these biopsies. In vitro, Wnt3a induced ß-catenin activation, stimulated fibroblast proliferation, migration, gel contraction and myofibroblast differentiation, and profibrotic gene expression. Genetic and pharmacological approaches were used to demonstrate that these profibrotic responses involved autocrine TGF-β signaling via Smads. In contrast, in explanted subcutaneous preadipocytes Wnt3a repressed adipogenesis and promoted myofibroblast differentiation.
Canonical Wnt signaling was hyperactivated in SSc skin biopsies, and in explanted mesenchymal cells Wnt3a stimulated fibrogenic responses while suppressing adipogenesis. Together, these results indicate that Wnts have potent profibrotic effects and canonical Wnt signaling plays an important role in the pathogenesis of fibrosis and lipoatrophy in SSc.
Malignant gliomas contain stroma and a variety of immune cells including abundant activated microglia/macrophages. Mounting evidence indicates that the glioma microenvironment converts the glioma-associated microglia/macrophages (GAMs) into glioma-supportive, immunosuppressive cells; however, GAMs can retain intrinsic anti-tumor properties. Here, we review and discuss this duality and the potential therapeutic strategies that may inhibit their glioma-supportive and propagating functions.
AIM: To investigate the metabolic profiles of xenograft pancreatic cancer before and after radiotherapy by high-resolution magic angle spinning proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (HRMAS 1H NMR) combined with principal components analysis (PCA) and evaluate the radiotherapeutic effect.
METHODS: The nude mouse xenograft model of human pancreatic cancer was established by injecting human pancreatic cancer cell SW1990 subcutaneously into the nude mice. When the tumors volume reached 800 mm3, the mice received various radiation doses. Two weeks later, tumor tissue sections were prepared for running the NMR measurements. 1H NMR and PCA were used to determine the changes in the metabolic profiles of tumor tissues after radiotherapy. Metabolic profiles of normal pancreas, pancreatic tumor tissues, and radiation- treated pancreatic tumor tissues were compared.
RESULTS: Compared with 1H NMR spectra of the normal nude mouse pancreas, the levels of choline, taurine, alanine, isoleucine, leucine, valine, lactate, and glutamic acid of the pancreatic cancer group were increased, whereas an opposite trend for phosphocholine, glycerophosphocholine, and betaine was observed. The ratio of phosphocholine to creatine, and glycerophosphocholine to creatine showed noticeable decrease in the pancreatic cancer group. After further evaluation of the tissue metabolic profile after treatment with three different radiation doses, no significant change in metabolites was observed in the 1H NMR spectra, while the inhibition of tumor growth was in proportion to the radiation doses. However, PCA results showed that the levels of choline and betaine were decreased with the increased radiation dose, and conversely, the level of acetic acid was dramatically increased.
CONCLUSION: The combined methods were demonstrated to have the potential for allowing early diagnosis and assessment of pancreatic cancer response to radiotherapy.
High-resolution magic angle spinning proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy; Principal components analysis; Pancreatic cancer; Radiotherapy
To evaluate the therapeutic benefit of 3D-image-guided high-dose-rate intracavitary brachytherapy (3D-image-guided HDR-BT) used as a salvage treatment of intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) in patients with locally persistent nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC).
Thirty-two patients with locally persistent NPC after full dose of IMRT were evaluated retrospectively. 3D-image-guided HDR-BT treatment plan was performed on a 3D treatment planning system (PLATO BPS 14.2). The median dose of 16 Gy was delivered to the 100% isodose line of the Gross Tumor Volume.
The whole procedure was well tolerated under local anesthesia. The actuarial 5-y local control rate for 3D-image-guided HDR-BT was 93.8%, patients with early-T stage at initial diagnosis had 100% local control rate. The 5-y actuarial progression-free survival and distant metastasis-free survival rate were 78.1%, 87.5%. One patient developed and died of lung metastases. The 5-y actuarial overall survival rate was 96.9%.
Our results showed that 3D-image-guided HDR-BT would provide excellent local control as a salvage therapeutic modality to IMRT for patients with locally persistent disease at initial diagnosis of early-T stage NPC.
Nasopharyngeal carcinoma; Intensity-modulated radiotherapy; Persistent disease; 3D-image-guided HDR Brachytherapy; Local tumor control
Melanoma is a common and deadly tumor that upon metastasis to the central nervous system (CNS) has median survival duration of less than 5 months. Activation of the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) has been identified as a key mediator that drives the fundamental components of melanoma. We hypothesized that WP1066, a novel inhibitor of STAT3 signaling, would enhance the antitumor activity of cyclophosphamide (CTX) against melanoma, including disease within the CNS. The mechanisms of efficacy were investigated by tumor- and immune-mediated cytotoxic assays, in vivo evaluation of the reduction of regulatory T cells (Tregs) and by determining intratumoral p-STAT3 expression by immunohistochemistry. Combinational therapy of WP1066, with both metronomic and cytotoxic dosing of CTX, was investigated in a model system of systemic and intracerebral melanoma in syngeneic mice. Inhibition of p-STAT3 by WP1066 was enhanced with CTX in a dose-dependent manner. However, in mice with intracerebral melanoma, the greatest therapeutic benefit was seen in animals treated with cytotoxic CTX dosing and WP1066, whose median survival time was 120 days, an increase of 375%, with 57% long-term survivors. This treatment efficacy correlated with p-STAT3 expression levels within the tumor microenvironment. The efficacy of the combination of cytotoxic dosing of CTX with WP1066 is attributed to the direct tumor cytotoxic effects of the agents and has the greatest therapeutic potential for the treatment of CNS melanoma.
Melanoma; cyclophosphamide; STAT3
To evaluate the screening performance of individual and combined use of clinical breast examination, ultrasonography and mammography in Chinese women, we conducted a biennial breast cancer screening program among 14,464 women aged 35 to 74 years old who lived in Qibao County, Minhang district of Shanghai, China, between May 2008 and Sept 2012. All participants were submitted to clinical breast examination, and then women with positive results and all women at age of 45-69 years old were preformed breast ultrasonography and mammography. The examination results were compared against pathological findings as the gold standard of reference. A total of 66 women were diagnosed with breast cancer in the two rounds of the screening, yielding an incident rate of 194 per 100,000 person-years. The sensitivity of clinical breast examination, ultrasonography and mammography alone were 61.4%, 53.7% and 67.3%, respectively. While mammography performed better in elder age groups and hormone receptor positive disease groups, ultrasonography had a higher sensitivity in younger age group and did not differ in sensitivity by estrogen receptor or progesterone receptor status. Combined use of the two imaging examinations increased the sensitivity in almost all age groups, but had a higher sensitivity in hormone receptor positive cancers than in those negative. Our results suggest that the Qibao modality is an effective strategy for breast cancer screening among Chinese women, especially for early detection of elder and hormone receptor positive breast cancer.
Breast cancer screening; Clinical breast examination; Mammography; Breast ultrasonography; Sensitivity; Specificity
AIM: To investigate the expression patterns of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) in gastric cancer.
METHODS: Two publicly available human exon arrays for gastric cancer and data for the corresponding normal tissue were downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). We re-annotated the probes of the human exon arrays and retained the probes uniquely mapping to lncRNAs at the gene level. LncRNA expression profiles were generated by using robust multi-array average method in affymetrix power tools. The normalized data were then analyzed with a Bioconductor package linear models for microarray data and genes with adjusted P-values below 0.01 were considered differentially expressed. An independent data set was used to validate the results.
RESULTS: With the computational pipeline established to re-annotate over 6.5 million probes of the Affymetrix Human Exon 1.0 ST array, we identified 136053 probes uniquely mapping to lncRNAs at the gene level. These probes correspond to 9294 lncRNAs, covering nearly 76% of the GENCODE lncRNA data set. By analyzing GSE27342 consisting of 80 paired gastric cancer and normal adjacent tissue samples, we identified 88 lncRNAs that were differentially expressed in gastric cancer, some of which have been reported to play a role in cancer, such as LINC00152, taurine upregulated 1, urothelial cancer associated 1, Pvt1 oncogene, small nucleolar RNA host gene 1 and LINC00261. In the validation data set GSE33335, 59% of these differentially expressed lncRNAs showed significant expression changes (adjusted P-value < 0.01) with the same direction.
CONCLUSION: We identified a set of lncRNAs differentially expressed in gastric cancer, providing useful information for discovery of new biomarkers and therapeutic targets in gastric cancer.
Long non-coding RNA; Gastric cancer; Microarray analysis; Data mining
As a response to harsh environments, the crustacean artemia produces diapause gastrula embryos (cysts), in which cell division and embryonic development are totally arrested. This dormant state can last for very long periods but be terminated by specific environmental stimuli. Thus, artemia is an ideal model organism in which to study cell cycle arrest and embryonic development.
Our study focuses on the roles of H3K56ac in the arrest of cell cycle and development during artemia diapause formation and termination. We found that the level of H3K56ac on chromatin increased during diapause formation, and decreased upon diapause termination, remaining basal level throughout subsequent embryonic development. In both HeLa cells and artemia, blocking the deacetylation with nicotinamide, a histone deacetylase inhibitor, increased the level of H3K56ac on chromatin and induced an artificial cell cycle arrest. Furthermore, we found that this arrest of the cell cycle and development was induced by H3K56ac and dephosphorylation of the checkpoint protein, retinoblastoma protein.
These results have revealed the dynamic change in H3K56ac on chromatin during artemia diapause formation and termination. Thus, our findings provide insight into the regulation of cell division during arrest of artemia embryonic development and provide further insight into the functions of H3K56ac.
MicroRNA 34a (miR-34a) is a potential tumor suppressor gene and has been identified as a miRNA component of the p53 network. To better understand the biological pathways involved in miR-34a action, a parallel global protein and mRNA expression profiling on miR-34a treated neuroblastoma cells (IMR32) was performed using isotope-coded affinity tags (ICAT) and Affymetrix U133plus2 microarray respectively. Global profiling showed that miR-34a causes much smaller mRNA expression changes compared to changes at the protein level. A total of 1495 proteins represented by 2 or more peptides were identified from the quantitative ICAT analysis, of which 143 and 192 proteins are significantly up- or down-regulated by miR-34a, respectively. Pathway analysis of these differentially expressed proteins showed the enrichment of apoptosis and cell death processes in up-regulated proteins but DNA replication and cell cycle processes in the down-regulated proteins. Ribosomal proteins are the most significant set down-regulated by miR-34a. Additionally, biological network analysis to identify direct interactions among the differentially expressed proteins demonstrated that the expression of the ubiquitous transcription factor YY1, as well as its downstream proteins, is significantly reduced by miR-34a. We further demonstrated that miR-34a directly targets YY1 through a miR-34a-binding site within the 3’ UTR of YY1 using a luciferase reporter system. YY1 is a negative regulator of p53 and it plays an essential role in cancer biology. Therefore, YY1 is another important direct target of miR-34a which closely regulates TP53 activities.
miR-34a; YY1; ICAT; proteomics; neuroblastoma
In 2010, the first complete genome sequence of a dengue virus serotype 4 genotype II strain was reported in Guangzhou, China. Here, we report another isolated strain belonging to the genotype II. Our results will offer help to dengue virus control and precautions.
AIM: To investigate computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) manifestations of rectal gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) in order to enhance the recognition of these rare tumors.
METHODS: Fourteen patients with pathologically proven rectal GISTs were retrospectively reviewed. Patient histories were retrospectively reviewed for patient age, gender, presenting symptoms, endoscopic investigations, operation notes and pathologic slides. All tumors were evaluated for CD117, CD34 expression, and the tumors were stratified according to current criteria of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In all cases the first pre-operation imaging findings (CT and MRI, n = 3; MRI only, n = 8; CT only, n = 3) were analyzed by two experienced radiologists by consensus, which include: tumor size, shape, CT density (hypodense, isodense and hyperdense), MRI signal intensity (hypointense, isointense and hyperintense), epicenter (intraluminal or extraluminal), margin (well-defined or ill-defined), internal component (presence of calcifications, necrosis, hemorrhage or ulceration), pattern and degree of enhancement, invasion into adjacent structures. After review of the radiologic studies, clinical and pathological findings were correlated with radiological findings.
RESULTS: The patients, 13 men and 1 woman, were aged 31-62 years (mean = 51.5 ± 10.7 years). The most common initial presentation was hematochezia (n = 6). The mean tumor diameter was 5.68 ± 2.64 cm (range 1.5-11.2 cm). Eight lesions were round or oval, and 6 lesions were irregular. Eleven lesions were well-defined and 3 had ill-defined margins. Ten tumors were extraluminal and 4 were intraluminal. The density and MR signal intensity of the solid component of the lesions were similar to that of muscle on unenhanced CT (n = 6) and T1-weighted images (n = 11), and hyperintense on T2-weighted MR images. Calcification was detected in 2 tumors. Following intravenous injection of contrast media, 3 lesions had mild enhancement and 11 lesions had moderate enhancement. Enhancement was homogenous in 3 lesions and heterogeneous in 11. In 1 of 11 patients who underwent both CT and MRI, the tumor was homogenous on CT scan and heterogeneous on MRI. Eight patients were classified as high risk according to the modified recurrent risk classification system of NIH.
CONCLUSION: Rectal GISTs usually manifest as large, well-circumscribed, exophytic masses with moderate and heterogeneous enhancement on CT and MRI. The invasion of adjacent organs, bowel obstruction and local adenopathy are uncommon.
Gastrointestinal stromal tumors; Rectum; Computed tomography; Magnetic resonance imaging
A large unmet need exists for cost-effective, widely available antineoplastic immunotherapeutic agents with a robust translational potential. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) that regulate tumor-mediated immunosuppression or immune checkpoints can induce robust therapeutic immune responses, indicating that miRNAs may ultimately become part of the portfolio of anticancer immunotherapeutics.
cancer stem cells; glioblastoma multiforme; immunosuppression; microRNAs; regulatory T cells; signal transducer and activator of transcription 3
Prokaryotic cell wall biosynthesis is coordinated with cell growth and division, but the mechanisms regulating this dynamic process remain obscure. Here, we describe a phosphorylation-dependent regulatory complex that controls peptidoglycan (PG) biosynthesis in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. We found that PknB, a PG-responsive Ser-Thr protein kinase (STPK), initiates complex assembly by phosphorylating a kinase-like domain in the essential PG biosynthetic protein, MviN. This domain was structurally diverged from active kinases and did not mediate phosphotransfer. Threonine phosphorylation of the pseudokinase domain recruited the FhaA protein through its forkhead-associated (FHA) domain. The crystal structure of this phosphorylated pseudokinase–FHA domain complex revealed the basis of FHA domain recognition, which included unexpected contacts distal to the phosphorylated threonine. Conditional degradation of these proteins in mycobacteria demonstrated that MviN was essential for growth and PG biosynthesis and that FhaA regulated these processes at the cell poles and septum. Controlling this spatially localized PG regulatory complex is only one of several cellular roles ascribed to PknB, suggesting that the capacity to coordinate signaling across multiple processes is an important feature conserved between eukaryotic and prokaryotic STPK networks.
Integrative organ crosstalk regulates key aspects of energy homeostasis, and its dysregulation may underlie metabolic disorders such as obesity and diabetes. To test the hypothesis that crosstalk between the liver and pancreatic islets modulates β cell growth in response to insulin resistance, we used the liver-specific insulin receptor knockout (LIRKO) mouse, a unique model that exhibits dramatic islet hyperplasia. Using complementary in vivo parabiosis and transplantation assays, as well as in vitro islet culture approaches, we demonstrate that humoral, nonneural, non-cell-autonomous factor(s) induces β cell proliferation in LIRKO mice. Furthermore, we report that a hepatocyte-derived factor(s) stimulates mouse and human β cell proliferation in ex vivo assays, independent of ambient glucose and insulin levels. These data implicate the liver as a critical source of β cell growth factor(s) in insulin-resistant states.
Rats are naturally resistant to Toxoplasma gondii infection, particularly the RH strain, while mice are not. Previous studies have demonstrated that inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and arginase-1 of rodent peritoneal macrophages are linked to the mechanism of resistance. As an increasing number of studies on human and animal infections are showing that pulmonary toxoplasmosis is one of the most severe clinical signs from T. gondii infection, we are interested to know whether T. gondii infection in alveolar macrophages of rats is also linked to the levels of iNOS and arginase-1 activity. Our results demonstrate that T. gondii could grow and proliferate in rat alveolar macrophages, both in vitro and in vivo, at levels higher than resistant rat peritoneal macrophages and at comparable levels to sensitive mouse peritoneal macrophages. Lower activity and expression levels of iNOS and higher activity and expression levels of arginase-1 in rat alveolar macrophages were found to be linked to the susceptibility of T. gondii infection in these cells. These novel findings could aid a better understanding of the pathogenesis of clinical pulmonary toxoplasmosis in humans and domestic animals.