High-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) that is resistant to platinum-based chemotherapy has a particularly poor prognosis. Response to platinum has both prognostic survival value and dictates secondary treatment strategies. Using transcriptome analysis, we sought to identify differentially expressed genes/pathways based on a tumor's platinum response for discovering novel predictive biomarkers.
Peutz-Jeghers syndrome (PJS) is a rare hereditary disorder resulting from mutations in serine/threonine kinase 11 (STK11) and characterized by gastrointestinal (GI) hamartomatous polyps, mucocutaneous pigmentation, and an increased risk for specific cancers. Little is known about the genetic implications of specific STK11 mutations with regard to their role in dysplastic and malignant transformation of GI polyps. Peripheral blood genomic DNA samples from 116 Chinese PJS patients from 52 unrelated families were investigated for STK11 mutations. Genotype-phenotype correlations were investigated. The mutation detection rate was 67.3% (51.9% point mutations, 15.4% large deletions). Fourteen out of the 25 point mutations identified were novel. Nearly one-third of all mutations, 8/27 (29.6%), were in exon 7, the shortest out of the nine exons. Strikingly, mutations affecting protein kinase domain XI, encoded in part by exon 7, correlated with a 90% (9/10) incidence of GI polyp dysplasia. In contrast, only two out of 17 (11.8%) nondomain XI mutations were linked to polyp dysplasia (P = 0.0001). The extent of the association between dysplasia and the development of GI-related cancers is currently unknown but our results highlight a novel STK11 genotype-phenotype association as the basis for future genetic counseling and basic research studies.
Retrospective studies have demonstrated that nearly 50% of patients with ovarian cancer with normal cancer antigen 125 (CA125) levels have persistent disease; however, prospectively distinguishing between patients is currently impossible. Here, we demonstrate that for one patient, with the first reported fibroblast growth factor receptor 2 (FGFR2) fusion transcript in ovarian cancer, circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) is a more sensitive and specific biomarker than CA125, and it can also inform on a candidate therapeutic. For a 4-year period, during which the patient underwent primary debulking surgery and chemotherapy, tumor recurrences, and multiple chemotherapeutic regimens, blood samples were longitudinally collected and stored. Whereas postsurgical CA125 levels were elevated only three times for 28 measurements, the FGFR2 fusion ctDNA biomarker was readily detectable by quantitative real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in all of these same blood samples and in the tumor recurrences. Given the persistence of the FGFR2 fusion, we treated tumor cells derived from this patient and others with the FGFR2 inhibitor BGJ398. Only tumor cells derived from this patient were sensitive to FGFR2 inhibitor treatment. Using the same methodologic approach, we demonstrate in a second patient with a different fusion that PCR and agarose gel electrophoresis can also be used to identify tumor-specific DNA in the circulation. Taken together, we demonstrate that a relatively inexpensive, PCR-based ctDNA surveillance assay can outperform CA125 in identifying occult disease.
The statin family of cholesterol-lowering drugs is known to have pleiotropic properties which include anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects. Statins exert their pleiotropic effects by altering expression of human immune regulators including pro-inflammatory cytokines. Previously we found that statins modulate virulence phenotypes of the human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and sought to investigate if simvastatin could alter the host response to this organism in lung epithelial cells. Simvastatin increased the expression of the P. aeruginosa target genes KLF2, KLF6, IL-8 and CCL20. Furthermore, both simvastatin and P. aeruginosa induced alternative splicing of KLF6. The novel effect of simvastatin on wtKLF6 expression was found to be responsible for induction of the KLF6 regulated genes CCL20 and iNOS. Simvastatin also increased the adhesion of P. aeruginosa to host cells, without altering invasion or cytotoxicity. This study demonstrated that simvastatin had several novel effects on the pulmonary cellular immune response.
Krüppel like factors (KLFs) are conserved transcription factors that have been implicated in many developmental processes including differentiation, organ patterning, or regulation of stem cell pluripotency. We report the generation and analysis of loss-of-function mutants of Drosophila Klf6/7, the luna gene. We demonstrate that luna mutants are associated with very early embryonic defects prior to cellularization at the syncytial stage and cause DNA separation defects during the rapid mitotic cycles resulting in un-coupled DNA and centrosome cycles. These defects manifest themselves, both in animals that are maternally homozygous and heterozygous mutant. Surprisingly, luna is only required during the syncytial stages and not later in development, suggesting that the DNA segregation defect is linked to centrosomes, since centrosomes are dispensable for later cell divisions.
MYH9-related disease (MYH9-RD) is one of the most frequent autosomal-dominant forms of inherited macrothrombocytopenias and is caused by mutations in MYH9 (nonmuscle myosin IIA), the gene coding for the heavy chain of the nonmuscle myosin IIA. Affected individuals can present with isolated thrombocytopenia, and whereas only some will have bleeding events requiring intervention, nearly all will require the use of prophylactic platelet transfusions before surgery. Here we report the first prophylactic use of eltrombopag before surgery in a child with MYH9-RD. Our patient was a 13-year-old girl with an MYH9 S96L missense mutation who required a tympanoplasty due to chronic otitis media. Pretreatment microscopic platelet count was 10 × 10(9)/L. The child was treated with eltrombopag starting 4 weeks before her planned surgery. On the day of surgery her platelet count was 70 × 10(9)/L. She required no platelet transfusions and no abnormal bleeding was reported either during surgery or postoperatively. Given these results, the first reported in a child, we suggest that the use of this thrombopoietic agent should be further evaluated as a useful presurgical prophylactic option in this hereditary thrombocytopenia, thus avoiding the use of platelet transfusions and their associated risks, which include alloimmunization and the transmission of infectious agents.
Obesity is a major public health concern, and complementary research strategies have been directed toward the identification of the underlying causative gene mutations that affect the normal pathways and networks that regulate energy balance. Here, we describe an autosomal-recessive morbid-obesity syndrome and identify the disease-causing gene defect. The average body mass index of affected family members was 48.7 (range = 36.7-61.0), and all had features of the metabolic syndrome. Homozygosity mapping localized the disease locus to a region in 3q29; we designated this region the morbid obesity 1 (MO1) locus. Sequence analysis identified a homozygous nonsense mutation in CEP19, the gene encoding the ciliary protein CEP19, in all affected family members. CEP19 is highly conserved in vertebrates and invertebrates, is expressed in multiple tissues, and localizes to the centrosome and primary cilia. Homozygous Cep19-knockout mice were morbidly obese, hyperphagic, glucose intolerant, and insulin resistant. Thus, loss of the ciliary protein CEP19 in humans and mice causes morbid obesity and defines a target for investigating the molecular pathogenesis of this disease and potential treatments for obesity and malnutrition.
The vanishing bone syndrome multicentric osteolysis with nodulosis and arthropathy (MONA) is a rare chronic skeleton disorder caused by matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP2) deficiency, mimicking erosive polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis. MONA is characterised by facial dysmorphism, subcutaneous fibrocollagenous nodules, carpal and tarsal osteolysis and interphalangeal joint erosions. We present the case of a 5-year-old boy with double outlet right ventricle, ventricular septal defect, coarctation of the aorta and MONA. Previously, a total of 24 cases of MONA have been reported of which six also had congenital cardiac malformations. Despite treatment attempts of our patient with methotrexate, eternacept and prednisolone, serial X-ray studies documented continuous severe bone degeneration. Conclusion: The case documents the natural history of MONA and establishes a link between MMP2 deficiency and heart development, and given the recurring cardiac association, we suggest that all MONA patients be examined for possible cardiac defects.
Infantile myofibromatosis (IM) is a disorder of mesenchymal proliferation characterized by the development of nonmetastasizing tumors in the skin, muscle, bone, and viscera. Occurrence within families across multiple generations is suggestive of an autosomal-dominant (AD) inheritance pattern, but autosomal-recessive (AR) modes of inheritance have also been proposed. We performed whole-exome sequencing (WES) in members of nine unrelated families clinically diagnosed with AD IM to identify the genetic origin of the disorder. In eight of the families, we identified one of two disease-causing mutations, c.1978C>A (p.Pro660Thr) and c.1681C>T (p.Arg561Cys), in PDGFRB. Intriguingly, one family did not have either of these PDGFRB mutations but all affected individuals had a c.4556T>C (p.Leu1519Pro) mutation in NOTCH3. Our studies suggest that mutations in PDGFRB are a cause of IM and highlight NOTCH3 as a candidate gene. Further studies of the crosstalk between PDGFRB and NOTCH pathways may offer new opportunities to identify mutations in other genes that result in IM and is a necessary first step toward understanding the mechanisms of both tumor growth and regression and its targeted treatment.
Natural killer (NK) cells are innate immune lymphocytes that provide critical defense against virally infected and transformed cells. NK-cell cytotoxicity requires the formation of an F-actin rich immunologic synapse (IS), as well as the polarization of perforin-containing lytic granules to the IS and secretion of their contents at the IS. It was reported previously that NK-cell cytotoxicity requires nonmuscle myosin IIA function and that granule-associated myosin IIA mediates the interaction of granules with F-actin at the IS. In the present study, we evaluate the nature of the association of myosin IIA with lytic granules. Using NK cells from patients with mutations in myosin IIA, we found that the nonhelical tailpiece is required for NK-cell cytotoxicity and for the phosphorylation of granule-associated myosin IIA. Ultra-resolution imaging techniques demonstrated that single myosin IIA molecules associate with NK-cell lytic granules via the nonhelical tailpiece. Phosphorylation of myosin IIA at residue serine 1943 (S1943) in the tailpiece is needed for this linkage. This defines a novel mechanism for myosin II function, in which myosin IIA can act as a single-molecule actin motor, claiming granules as cargo through tail-dependent phosphorylation for the execution of a pre-final step in human NK-cell cytotoxicity.
Glutathione peroxidase 3 (GPX3) is a selenocysteine-containing antioxidant enzyme that reacts with hydrogen peroxide and soluble fatty acid hydroperoxides, thereby helping to maintain redox balance within cells. Serum levels of GPX3 have been found to be reduced in various cancers including prostrate, thyroid, colorectal, breast and gastric cancers. Intriguingly, GPX3 has been reported to be upregulated in clear cell ovarian cancer tissues and thus may have implications in chemotherapeutic resistance. Since clear cell and serous subtypes of ovarian cancer represent two distinct disease entities, the aim of this study was to determine GPX3 levels in serous ovarian cancer patients and establish its potential as a biomarker for detection and/or surveillance of papillary serous ovarian cancer, the most frequent form of ovarian tumors in women.
Hyaline Fibromatosis Syndrome (HFS) is a human genetic disease caused by mutations in the anthrax toxin receptor 2 (or cmg2) gene, which encodes a membrane protein thought to be involved in the homeostasis of the extracellular matrix. Little is known about the structure and function of the protein or the genotype–phenotype relationship of the disease. Through the analysis of four patients, we identify three novel mutants and determine their effects at the cellular level. Altogether, we show that missense mutations that map to the extracellular von Willebrand domain or the here characterized Ig-like domain of CMG2 lead to folding defects and thereby to retention of the mutated protein in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Mutations in the Ig-like domain prevent proper disulphide bond formation and are more efficiently targeted to ER-associated degradation. Finally, we show that mutant CMG2 can be rescued in fibroblasts of some patients by treatment with proteasome inhibitors and that CMG2 is then properly transported to the plasma membrane and signalling competent, identifying the ER folding and degradation pathway components as promising drug targets for HFS.
The tumor suppressor KLF6 and its oncogenic cytoplasmic splice variant KLF6-SV1 represent a paradigm in cancer biology in that their antagonistic cancer functions are encoded within the same gene. As a consequence of splicing, KLF6-SV1 loses both the C-terminus C2H2 three zinc finger (ZF) domain, which characterizes all KLF proteins, as well as the adjacent 5 basic region (5BR), a putative nuclear localization signal (NLS). It has been hypothesized that this NLS is a functional domain critical to direct the distinct subcellular localization of the tumor suppressor and its splice variant.
A central challenge facing gynecologic oncology is achieving personalized care in ovarian cancer treatment. The current ovarian cancer classification scheme distinguishes tumors based on histopathologic subtype, grade, and surgical stage. Recent molecular investigations have highlighted distinguishing genetic features of certain tumors within a given category, and given the rapid pace of technologic advancement combined with plummeting costs for complete genomic sequencing this classification will markedly improve. Clinical studies have begun to explore the influence of currently known distinctions on the natural history of the disease, most recently with particular attention to the BRCA1 status of tumors. Mutations in the BRCA1 gene have long been known to increase a womans risk of developing ovarian cancer. As has been shown, BRCA1-associated ovarian cancers may be associated with characteristic differences in therapeutic response and overall survival, and further defining these subsets may become instrumental in clinical decision-making. Therefore, given the eightfold difference (5-40%) in reported frequency of BRCA1 inactivation by methylation in the pioneering studies in the field, a critical re-appraisal of the literature, techniques, samples used, and interpretations of BRCA1 inactivation is warranted along with a review of the more recent and comprehensive molecular studies.
Matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2), a type IV collagenase secreted by activated hepatic stellate cells (HSCs), is upregulated in chronic liver disease and is considered a profibrotic mediator due to its proliferative effect on cultured HSCs and ability to degrade normal liver matrix. Although associative studies and cell culture findings suggest that MMP-2 promotes hepatic fibrogenesis, no in vivo model has definitively established a pathologic role for MMP-2 in the development and progression of liver fibrosis. We therefore examined the impact of MMP-2 deficiency on liver fibrosis development during chronic CCl(4) liver injury and explored the effect of MMP-2 deficiency and overexpression on collagen I expression.
Epithelial ovarian cancer is one of the most lethal gynecologic cancers and the fifth most frequent cause of female cancer deaths in the United States. Despite dramatic treatment successes in other cancers through the use of molecular agents targeted against genetically defined events driving cancer development and progression, very few insights into epithelial ovarian cancer have been translated from the laboratory to the clinic. If advances are to be made in the early diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of this disease, it will be critical to characterize the common and private (personalized) genetic defects underlying the development and spread of epithelial ovarian cancer. The tumor suppressor Kruppel-like factor 6 and its alternatively spliced, oncogenic isoform, Kruppel-like factor 6 splice variant 1, are members of the Kruppel-like zinc finger transcription factor family of proteins, which have diverse roles in cellular differentiation, development, proliferation, growth-related signal transduction, and apoptosis. Inactivation of Kruppel-like factor 6 and overexpression of Kruppel-like factor 6 splice variant 1 have been associated with the progression of a number of human cancers and even with patient survival. This article summarizes our recent findings demonstrating that a majority of epithelial ovarian cancer tumors have Kruppel-like factor 6 allelic loss and decreased expression coupled with increased expression of Kruppel-like factor 6 splice variant 1. The targeted reduction of Kruppel-like factor 6 in ovarian cancer cell lines results in marked increases in cell proliferation, invasion, tumor growth, angiogenesis, and intraperitoneal dissemination in vivo. In contrast, the inhibition of Kruppel-like factor 6 splice variant 1 decreases cellular proliferation, invasion, angiogenesis, and tumorigenicity; this provides the rationale for its potential therapeutic application. These results and our recent demonstration that the inhibition of Kruppel-like factor 6 splice variant 1 can dramatically prolong survival in a preclinical mouse model of ovarian cancer are reviewed and discussed.
Multicentric osteolysis with nodulosis and arthropathy (MONA, NAO (OMIM no. 605156)) is an autosomal recessive member of the vanishing bone syndromes and is notable for the extent of carpal and tarsal osteolysis and interphalangeal joint erosions, facial dysmorphia, and the presence of fibrocollagenous nodules. This rare disorder has been described previously in Saudi Arabian and Indian families. We now report on the first Turkish family with MONA, further confirming the panethnic nature of this disease. Strikingly, and in addition to the previously noted skeletal and joint features, affected members of this family also had congenital heart defects. Molecular analysis identified a novel MMP2 inactivating mutation that deletes the terminal hemopexin domains and thus confirmed the diagnosis of MONA. On the basis of these findings, we suggest that cardiac defects may also represent a component of this syndrome and thus a physiologically relevant target of MMP-2 activity.
The Krüppel-like zinc finger transcription factor (KLF6) gene encodes a family of proteins generated through alternative splicing involved in the regulation of cancer development and progression. Alternative splicing of the KLF6 gene results in the production of at least four alternatively spliced isoforms, two of which are extensively discussed in this review. The full length form of the KLF6 gene is a tumor suppressor gene that is frequently inactivated by loss of heterozygozity (LOH), somatic mutation, and/or decreased expression in human cancer. While the exact mechanisms underlying KLF6s tumor suppressor roles are not completely known, a number of highly relevant, overlapping pathways have been described: transactivation of p21 in a p53-independent manner, reduction of cyclin D1/cdk4 complexes via interaction with cyclin D1, inhibition of c-Jun proto-oncoprotein activities, decreased VEGF expression, and induction of apoptosis. Kruppel-like factor 6 splice variant 1 (KLF6-SV1) is an oncogenic splice variant of the KLF6 tumor suppressor gene that is specifically overexpressed in a number of human cancers. Increased KLF6-SV1 expression is associated with poor prognosis in prostate, lung, and ovarian cancer. Furthermore, KLF6-SV1 has been shown to be biologically active, antagonizing the tumor suppressor function of KLF6 and promoting tumor growth and dissemination in both ovarian and prostate cancer models. In addition, a common germline polymorphism in the KLF6 gene associated with increased prostate cancer risk in a large multi-institutional study of 3411 men results in increased expression of KLF6-SV1. Furthermore, recent studies have demonstrated that targeted reduction of KLF6-SV1 results in the induction of spontaneous apoptosis in cell culture, synergizes with chemotherapeutic agents like cisplatin, and results in significant tumor regression in vivo. Combined, these data make the KLF6 gene family a compelling therapeutic target for both the treatment of localized as well as metastatic cancer.
NK cell cytotoxicity requires the formation of an actin-rich immunological synapse (IS) with a target cell and the polarization of perforin-containing lytic granules toward the IS. Following the polarization of lytic granules, they traverse through the actin-rich IS to join the NK cell membrane in order for directed secretion of their contents to occur. We examined the role of myosin IIA as a candidate for facilitating this prefinal step in lytic NK cell IS function. Lytic granules in and derived from a human NK cell line, or ex vivo human NK cells, were constitutively associated with myosin IIA. When isolated using density gradients, myosin IIA-associated NK cell lytic granules directly bound to F-actin and the interaction was sensitive to the presence of ATP under conditions of flow. In NK cells from patients with a truncation mutation in myosin IIA, NK cell cytotoxicity, lytic granule penetration into F-actin at the IS, and interaction of isolated granules with F-actin were all decreased. Similarly, inhibition of myosin function also diminished the penetration of lytic granules into F-actin at the IS, as well as the final approach of lytic granules to and their dynamics at the IS. Thus, NK cell lytic granule-associated myosin IIA enables their interaction with actin and final transit through the actin-rich IS to the synaptic membrane, and can be defective in the context of naturally occurring human myosin IIA mutation.
Defects in apoptosis are not only a hallmark of cancer initiation and progression but can also underlie the development of chemoresistance. How the tightly regulated cascade of protein-protein interactions between members of three competing protein families regulating the apoptotic cascade is subverted in tumor cells is incompletely understood. Here, we show that KLF6-SV1, whose overexpression is associated with poor survival in several different cancers and is an alternatively spliced isoform of the Krüppel-like tumor suppressor KLF6, is a critical prosurvival/antiapoptotic protein. KLF6-SV1 binds the proapoptotic BH3-only protein NOXA, which results in their mutual HDM2-dependent degradation. In turn, this increases the intracellular concentration of the prosurvival binding partner of NOXA, Mcl-1, and effectively blocks apoptosis. In an ovarian cancer model, systemically delivered small interfering RNA against KLF6-SV1 induces spontaneous apoptosis of tumor cells, decreases tumor burden, and restores cisplatin sensitivity in vivo. Moreover, i.p. delivery of siKLF6-SV1 RNA halts ovarian tumor progression and improves median and overall survival (progression-free for >15 months; P < 0.0002) in mice in a dose-dependent manner. Thus, KLF6-SV1 represents a novel regulator of protein interactions in the apoptotic cascade and a therapeutically targetable control point.
Gastric cancer is the second most common cancer and a leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. The Kruppel-like factor 6 (KLF6) tumour suppressor gene had been previously shown to be inactivated in a number of human cancers through loss of heterozygosity (LOH), somatic mutation, decreased expression and increased alternative splicing into a dominant negative oncogenic splice variant, KLF6-SV1. In the present study, 37 gastric cancer samples were analysed for the presence of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) of the KLF6 locus and somatic mutation. In total, 18 of 34 (53%) of the gastric cancer samples analysed demonstrated KLF6 locus specific loss. Four missense mutations, such as T179I, R198G, R71Q and S180L, were detected. Interestingly, two of these mutations R71Q and S180L have been identified independently by several groups in various malignancies including prostate, colorectal and gastric cancers. In addition, decreased wild-type KLF6 (wtKLF6) expression was associated with loss of the KLF6 locus and was present in 48% of primary gastric tumour samples analysed. Functional studies confirmed that wtKLF6 suppressed proliferation of gastric cancer cells via transcriptional regulation of the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21 and the oncogene c-myc. Functional characterisation of the common tumour-derived mutants demonstrated that the mutant proteins fail to suppress proliferation and function as dominant negative regulators of wtKLF6 function. Furthermore, stable overexpression of the R71Q and S180L tumour-derived mutants in the gastric cancer cell line, Hs746T, resulted in an increased tumourigenicity in vivo. Combined, these findings suggest an important role for the KLF6 tumour suppressor gene in gastric cancer development and progression and identify several highly cancer-relevant signalling pathways regulated by the KLF6 tumour suppressor gene.
Systemic hyalinosis is an autosomal recessive disease that encompasses two allelic syndromes, infantile systemic hyalinosis (ISH) and juvenile hyaline fibromatosis (JHF), which are caused by mutations in the CMG2 gene. Here we have analyzed the cellular consequences of five patient-derived point mutations in the extracellular von Willebrand domain or the transmembrane domain of the CMG2 protein. We found that four of the mutations led to retention of the protein in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), albeit through different mechanisms. Analysis of recombinant CMG2 von Willebrand factor A (vWA) domains, to which three of the mutations map, indicated that the mutations did not prevent proper folding and ligand binding, suggesting that, in vivo, slow folding, rather than misfolding, is responsible for ER retention. Our work shows that systemic hyalinosis can be qualified as a conformational disease, at least for the mutations that have been mapped to the extracellular and transmembrane domains. The long ER half-life and the ligand binding ability of the mutated von Willebrand domains suggest that treatments based on chemical chaperones could be beneficial.
Alternative splicing represents a unique post-transcriptional mechanism that increases the complexity of the eukaryotic proteome-generating protein isoforms whose functions can be novel, diverse, and/or even antagonistic when compared to its full-length transcript. The KLF family of genes consists of ?17 members, which are involved in the regulation of numerous critical cellular processes, including differentiation, cell proliferation, growth-related signal transduction, angiogenesis, and apoptosis. Using a strategy based on RT-PCR, selective cloning, and promoter-based assays of cancer-relevant genes, we identify and characterize the existence of multiple biologically active KLF splice forms across the entire family of proteins. We demonstrate biological function for a number of these isoforms. Furthermore, we highlight a possible functional interaction between full-length KLF4 and one of its splice variants in up-regulating cellular proliferation. Taken together, this report identifies for the first time a more complete view of the genomic and proteomic breadth and complexity of the KLF transcription factor family, revealing the existence of highly expressed and biologically active isoforms previously uncharacterized. In essence, knowing that these KLF isoforms exist provides the first step toward understanding the roles of these genes in human health and disease.
The "vanishing bone" syndromes represent a group of rare skeletal disorders characterized by osteolysis and joint destruction, which can mimic severe rheumatoid arthritis. Winchester syndrome was one of the first recognized autosomal-recessive, multicentric forms of the disorder. It was originally described nearly 50 years ago in two sisters with a severe crippling osteolysis. Using cultured fibroblasts from the proband, we have now identified homozygous mutations in membrane type-1 metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP or MMP14). We demonstrate that the resulting hydrophobic-region signal-peptide substitution (p.Thr17Arg) decreases MT1-MMP membrane localization with consequent impairment of pro-MMP2 activation, and we propose a structure-based mechanism for this effect.
Multicentric osteolysis with arthropathy (MOA; MIM 605156) is an inherited osteolyses and arthritis syndrome resulting from loss of matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2). We recently demonstrated that Mmp2(-/-) mice represent a unique model for the study of the human disease, sharing many features of the human syndrome including skeletal dysplasia and defects in osteoblast behavior. We therefore sought to explore the secondary molecular effects of MMP-2 loss, which coexist with the underlying skeletal and osteoblast phenotypes. We used quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) to measure osteoblast-related gene expression through ex vivo osteoblast differentiation of bone marrow stromal cells (BMSC) from Mmp2(-/-) and Mmp2(+/+) mice. We used western blot to measure osteopontin (OPN) serum levels and immunohistochemical staining to examine bone expression. MMP-2 expression was inhibited in SaOS2 cells using siRNA, and decreased MMP-2 expression at both RNA and protein levels was confirmed by qRT-PCR and western blot, respectively. Mmp2(-/-) BMSC induced to differentiate into osteoblasts were shown to significantly upregulate OPN and bone sialoprotein (BSP) expression levels compared with controls. Transcriptional upregulation was maintained in vivo, as demonstrated by increased levels of OPN in serum and bone in Mmp2(-/-) mice. These effects are generalizable because siRNA-mediated inhibition in cultured cells also upregulated OPN and BSP. OPN and BSP are known to affect MMP-2 expression and activity but have not previously been shown to be regulated by MMP-2. Identification of this newly defined circuitry provides insight into the potential molecular landscape underlying the MOA phenotype and highlights a pathway that might play a role in normal bone homeostasis.
Diaphyseal medullary stenosis with malignant fibrous histiocytoma (DMS-MFH) is an autosomal-dominant syndrome characterized by bone dysplasia, myopathy, and bone cancer. We previously mapped the DMS-MFH tumor-suppressing-gene locus to chromosomal region 9p21-22 but failed to identify mutations in known genes in this region. We now demonstrate that DMS-MFH results from mutations in the most proximal of three previously uncharacterized terminal exons of the gene encoding methylthioadenosine phosphorylase, MTAP. Intriguingly, two of these MTAP exons arose from early and independent retroviral-integration events in primate genomes at least 40 million years ago, and since then, their genomic integration has gained a functional role. MTAP is a ubiquitously expressed homotrimeric-subunit enzyme critical to polyamine metabolism and adenine and methionine salvage pathways and was believed to be encoded as a single transcript from the eight previously described exons. Six distinct retroviral-sequence-containing MTAP isoforms, each of which can physically interact with archetype MTAP, have been identified. The disease-causing mutations occur within one of these retroviral-derived exons and result in exon skipping and dysregulated alternative splicing of all MTAP isoforms. Our results identify a gene involved in the development of bone sarcoma, provide evidence of the primate-specific evolution of certain parts of an existing gene, and demonstrate that mutations in parts of this gene can result in human disease despite its relatively recent origin.
The widely expressed transcriptional coregulator, ligand-dependent corepressor (LCoR), initially characterized as a regulator of nuclear receptor-mediated transactivation, functions through recruitment of C-terminal binding proteins (CtBPs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs) to its N-terminal and central domains, respectively. We performed a yeast two-hybrid screen for novel cofactors, and identified an interaction between the C-terminal domain of LCoR and the transcription factor Krüppel-like factor 6 (KLF6), a putative tumor suppressor in prostate cancer. Subsequent experiments revealed LCoR regulation of several KLF6 target genes notably p21(WAF1/CIP1) (CDKN1A) and to a lesser extent E-cadherin (CDH1), indicating that LCoR regulates gene transcription through multiple classes of transcription factors. In multiple cancer cells, LCoR and KLF6 bind together on the promoters of the genes encoding CDKN1A and CDH1. LCoR contributes to KLF6-mediated transcriptional repression in a promoter- and cell type-dependent manner. Its inhibition of reporter constructs driven by the CDKN1A and CDH1 promoters in PC-3 prostate carcinoma cells is sensitive to treatment with the HDAC inhibitor trichostatin A. Additionally, the LCoR cofactor CtBP1 bound the same promoters and augmented the LCoR-dependent repression in PC-3 cells. Consistent with their inferred roles in transcriptional repression, siRNA-mediated knockdown of KLF6, LCoR, or CtBP1 in PC-3 cells induced expression of CDKN1A and CDH1 and additional KLF6 target genes. We propose a novel model of LCoR function in which promoter-bound KLF6 inhibits transcription of the CDKN1A gene and other genes as well by tethering a transcriptional corepressor complex containing LCoR, with specific contributions by CtBP1 and HDACs.
RNA-Seq allows a theoretically unbiased analysis of both genome-wide transcription levels and mutation status of a tumor. Using this technique we sought to identify novel candidate therapeutic targets expressed in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC).
We sought to identify candidate serum biomarkers for the detection and surveillance of EOC. Based on RNA-Seq transcriptome analysis of patient-derived tumors, highly expressed secreted proteins were identified using a bioinformatic approach.
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