Pheochromocytomas (PCCs) are tumors originating from the adrenal medulla displaying a diverse genetic background. While most PCCs are sporadic, about 40 % of the tumors have been associated with constitutional mutations in one of at least 14 known susceptibility genes. As 25 % of sporadic PCCs harbor somatic neurofibromin 1 gene (NF1) mutations, NF1 has been established as the most recurrently mutated gene in PCCs. To be able to pinpoint NF1-related pheochromocytoma (PCC) disease in clinical practice could facilitate the detection of familial cases, but the large size of the NF1 gene makes standard DNA sequencing methods cumbersome. The aim of this study was to examine whether mutations in the NF1 gene could be predicted by immunohistochemistry as a method to identify cases for further genetic characterization. Sixty-seven PCCs obtained from 67 unselected patients for which the somatic and constitutional mutational status of NF1 was known (49 NF1 wild type, 18 NF1 mutated) were investigated for NF1 protein immunoreactivity, and the results were correlated to clinical and genetic data. NF1 immunoreactivity was absent in the majority of the PCCs (44/67; 66 %), including 13 out of 18 cases (72 %) with a somatic or constitutional NF1 mutation. However, only a minority of the NF1 wild-type PCCs (18/49; 37 %) displayed retained NF1 immunoreactivity, thereby diminishing the specificity of the method. We conclude that NF1 immunohistochemistry alone is not a sufficient method to distinguish between NF1-mutated and non-mutated PCCs. In the clinical context, genetic screening therefore remains the most reliable tool to detect NF1-mutated PCCs.
TP53 is commonly mutated in several cancers and confers treatment resistance and poor prognosis. Altered expression of mouse double minute 2 (MDM2), a negative regulator of p53, may also attenuate normal p53 signaling, thereby enhancing tumor transformation and resistance to apoptosis. The single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) 309 has been reported to increase MDM2 expression and impair normal p53 response.
A number of single nucleotide polymorphisms have been associated with disease predisposition in chronic lymphocytic leukemia. A single nucleotide polymorphism in the MDM2 promotor region, MDM2SNP309, was shown to soothe the p53 pathway. In the current study, we aimed to clarify the effect of the MDM2SNP309 on chronic lymphocytic leukemia characteristics and outcome. We performed a meta-analysis of data from 2598 individual patients from 10 different cohorts. Patients' data and genetic analysis for MDM2SNP309 genotype, immunoglobulin heavy chain variable region mutation status and fluorescence in situ hybridization results were collected. There were no differences in overall survival based on the polymorphism (log rank test, stratified by study cohort; P=0.76; GG genotype: cohort-adjusted median overall survival of 151 months; TG: 153 months; TT: 149 months). In a multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression analysis, advanced age, male sex and unmutated immunoglobulin heavy chain variable region genes were associated with inferior survival, but not the MDM2 genotype. The MDM2SNP309 is unlikely to influence disease characteristics and prognosis in chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Studies investigating the impact of individual single nucleotide polymorphisms on prognosis are often controversial. This may be due to selection bias and small sample size. A meta-analysis based on individual patient data provides a reasonable strategy for prognostic factor analyses in the case of small individual studies. Individual patient data-based meta-analysis can, therefore, be a powerful tool to assess genetic risk factors in the absence of large studies.
Pheochromocytomas are neuroendocrine tumors arising from the adrenal medulla. While heritable mutations are frequently described, less is known about the genetics of sporadic pheochromocytoma. Mutations in genes involved in the cellular hypoxia response have been identified in tumors, and recently EPAS1, encoding HIF2?, has been revealed to be a new gene involved in the pathogenesis of pheochromocytoma and abdominal paraganglioma. The aim of this study was to further characterize EPAS1 alterations in non-familial pheochromocytomas. Tumor DNA from 42 adrenal pheochromocytoma cases with apparently sporadic presentation, without known hereditary mutations in predisposing genes, were analyzed for mutations in EPAS1 by sequencing of exons 9 and 12, which contain the two hydroxylation sites involved in HIF2? degradation, and also exon 2. In addition, the copy number at the EPAS1 locus as well as transcriptome-wide gene expression were studied by DNA and RNA microarray analyses, respectively. We identified six missense EPAS1 mutations, three in exon 9 and three in exon 12, in five of 42 pheochromocytomas (12%). The mutations were both somatic and constitutional, and had no overlap in 11 cases (26%) with somatic mutations in NF1 or RET. One sample had two different EPAS1 mutations, shown by cloning to occur in cis, possibly indicating a novel mechanism of HIF2? stabilization through inactivation of both hydroxylation sites. One of the tumors with an EPAS1 mutation also had a gain in DNA copy number at the EPAS1 locus. All EPAS1-mutated tumors displayed a pseudo-hypoxic gene expression pattern, indicating an oncogenic role of the identified mutations.
Diabetic nephropathy is a growing health concern with characteristic sterile inflammation. As the underlying mechanisms of this inflammation remain poorly defined, specific therapies targeting sterile inflammation in diabetic nephropathy are lacking. Intriguingly, an association of diabetic nephropathy with inflammasome activation has recently been shown, but the pathophysiological relevance of this finding remains unknown. Within glomeruli, inflammasome activation was detected in endothelial cells and podocytes in diabetic humans and mice and in glucose-stressed glomerular endothelial cells and podocytes in vitro. Abolishing Nlrp3 or caspase-1 expression in bone marrow-derived cells fails to protect mice against diabetic nephropathy. Conversely, Nlrp3-deficient mice are protected against diabetic nephropathy despite transplantation of wild-type bone marrow. Pharmacological IL-1R antagonism prevented or even reversed diabetic nephropathy in mice. Mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) activate the Nlrp3 inflammasome in glucose or advanced glycation end product stressed podocytes. Inhibition of mitochondrial ROS prevents glomerular inflammasome activation and nephropathy in diabetic mice. Thus, mitochondrial ROS and Nlrp3-inflammasome activation in non-myeloid-derived cells aggravate diabetic nephropathy. Targeting the inflammasome may be a potential therapeutic approach to diabetic nephropathy.Kidney International advance online publication, 30 July 2014; doi:10.1038/ki.2014.271.
Targeted therapy against the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) only variably represents a therapeutic advance in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). This study addresses the need of biomarkers of treatment response to the EGFR-targeting antibody cetuximab (Erbitux®).
The aim of the study was to investigate how alterations in the PI3K pathway correlate with non-small cell lung cancer subtypes squamous cell carcinoma (SSC) and adenocarcinoma (ADCA). We analyzed copy number variation and protein expression of INPP4B, protein expression of pAkt, PDPK1, and PTEN and mutational status of PIK3CA and PTEN in 180 cases. Nineteen% displayed loss of INPP4B copy, whereas 47% lacked expression, both showing correlation with SCC. Elevated pAkt expression was seen in 63% of all cases, also correlating to SCC. PDPK1 was expressed in 70%, more in male than female patients. Regarding PTEN, 50% displayed loss of expression, of which seven were identified with mutations in the phosphatase domain. We detected nine cases (5%) of PIK3CA mutations, all identified as the E545K hot spot mutation in the helical domain, all except one in SCC. When analyzing all PI3K pathway components together, we show that patients with at least one alteration in the PI3K pathway are twice as likely to have SCC, than ADCA. Interestingly, we also found a strong correlation between high pAkt expression and PTEN expression. As comparison, we also analyzed mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway genes, where we identified fifteen KRAS mutations (8%) and one BRAF mutation (1%), significantly associated to ADCA. No association was found to the Gly972Arg polymorphism of IRS-1, involved in activation of both PI3K and MAPK pathways. In conclusion, we show here that several components of the PI3K pathway, alone and in combination, are correlated to development of SCC of the lung.
A complex interplay between genetic and environmental factors is thought to be involved in the etiology of Parkinson's disease (PD). A recent genome-wide association and interaction study (GWAIS) identified GRIN2A, which encodes an NMDA-glutamate-receptor subunit involved in brain's excitatory neurotransmission, as a PD genetic modifier in inverse association with caffeine intake. Here in, we attempted to replicate the reported association of a single nucleotide polymorphism, GRIN2A_rs4998386, and its interaction with caffeine intake with PD in patient-control study in an ethnically homogenous population in southeastern Sweden, as consistent and independent genetic association studies are the gold standard for the validation of genome-wide association studies. All the subjects (193 sporadic PD patients and 377 controls) were genotyped, and the caffeine intake data was obtained by questionnaire. We observed an association between rs4998386 and PD with odds ratio (OR) of 0.61, 95% confidence intervals (CI) of 0.39-0.96, p = 0.03, under a model excluding rare TT allele. There was also a strong significance in joint effects of gene and caffeine on PD risk (TC heavy caffeine vs. CC light caffeine: OR = 0.38, 95%CI?=?[0.20-0.70], p = 0.002) and gene-caffeine interaction (OR = 0.998, 95%CI?=?[0.991-0.999], p<0.001). Overall, our results are in support of the findings of the GWAIS and provided additional evidence indicating PD protective effects of coffee drinking/caffeine intake as well as the interaction with glutamate receptor genotypes.
Activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome and subsequent generation of interleukin 1? is initiated in macrophages upon recognition of several stimuli. In the present work, we show that gain-of-function gene variants of inflammasome components known to predispose individuals to inflammatory disorders have a host-protective role during infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis. By isolation of macrophages from patients and healthy blood donors with genetic variants in NLRP3 and CARD8 and subsequent infection of the cells with virulent M. tuberculosis, we show that these gene variants, combined, are associated with increased control of bacterial growth in human macrophages.
NOTCH1 PEST domain mutations in chronic lymphocytic leukemia have recently been shown to be of prognostic relevance. Both NOTCH1 and NOTCH2 are constitutively activated in B-cell CLL but not expressed in normal B cells and may be involved in survival and resistance to apoptosis in CLL. We screened for mutations in different parts of both NOTCH1 and NOTCH2 genes and related the changes to survival and other known risk factors.
Congenital microphthalmia (CMIC) is a common developmental ocular disorder characterized by a small, and sometimes malformed, eye. Posterior microphthalmia (PM) and nanophthalmia are two rare subtypes of isolated CMIC characterized by extreme hyperopia due to short axial length and elevated lens/eye volume ratio. While nanophthalmia is associated with a reduced size in both anterior and posterior segments, PM involves a normal-size anterior chamber but a small posterior segment. Several genes encoding transcription and non-transcription regulators have been identified in different forms of CMIC. MFRP gene mutations have, for instance, been associated with nanophthalmia, and mutations in the recently identified PRSS56 gene have been linked to PM. So far, these two forms of CMIC have been associated with 9 mutations in PRSS56. Of particular interest, a c.1059_1066insC mutation has recently been reported in four Tunisian families with isolated PM and one Tunisian family with nanophthalmia. Here, we performed a genome-wide scan using a high density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array 50 K in a large consanguineous Tunisian family (PM7) affected with PM and identified the same causative disease mutation. A total of 24 polymorphic markers spanning the PRSS56 gene in 6 families originating from different regions of Tunisia were analyzed to investigate the origin of the c.1059_1066insC mutation and to determine whether it arose in a common ancestor. A highly significant disease-associated haplotype, spanning across the 146 kb of the 2q37.1 chromosome, was conserved in those families, suggesting that c.1059_1066insC arose from a common founder. The age of the mutation in this haplotype was estimated to be around 1,850 years. The identification of such founder effects may greatly simplify diagnostic genetic screening and lead to better prognostic counseling.
Urinary bladder carcinoma stage T1 is an unpredictable disease that in some cases has a good prognosis with only local or no recurrence, but in others can appear as a more aggressive tumor with progression to more advanced stages. The aim here was to investigate stage T1 tumors regarding MDM2 promoter SNP309 polymorphism, mutations in the p53 gene, and expression of p53 and p16 measured by immunohistochemistry, and subsequently relate these changes to tumor recurrence and progression. We examined a cohort of patients with primary stage T1 urothelial carcinoma of the bladder and their tumors.
Patients suffering from the neurofibromatosis type 1 syndrome, which is caused by germline mutations in the NF1 gene, have a tiny but not negligible risk of developing pheochromocytomas. It is, therefore, of interest that the NF1 gene has recently been revealed to carry somatic, inactivating mutations in a total of 35 (21.7%) of 161 sporadic pheochromocytomas in two independent tumor series. A majority of the tumors in both studies displayed loss of heterozygosity at the NF1 locus and a low NF1 mRNA expression. In view of previous findings that many sporadic pheochromocytomas cluster with neurofibromatosis type 1 syndrome-associated pheochromocytomas instead of forming clusters of their own, NF1 inactivation appears to be an important step in the pathogenesis of a large number of sporadic pheochromocytomas. A literature and public mutation database review has revealed that pheochromocytomas are among those human neoplasms in which somatic NF1 alterations are most frequent.
The autosomal dominant form of arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) has been linked to mutations in desmosomal proteins. A mutation in plakophilin 2 (PKP 2) is a frequent cause for ARVC. We describe a new mutation in the PKP2 gene, the genotype-phenotype variation in this mutation and its clinical consequences.
The aim of this study was to analyze whether polymorphisms for the null alleles of Glutathione S-Transferase Mu-1 (GSTM1), Glutathione S-Transferase Theta-1 (GSTT1), and a low-activity genetic variation of epoxide hydrolase exon three (EPHX*3) affect the risk of developing polyneuropathy. The enzymes of these genes are important in the metabolism of toxic compounds. Seventy-nine patients with cryptogenic polyneuropathy (equivalent to chronic idiopathic axonal neuropathy) and 398 controls were tested for the genetic polymorphism. Medical records were reviewed to collect data regarding clinical findings at diagnosis, and exposure data was collected via questionnaires. The odds ratios (ORs) for the null forms of GSTM1 and GSTT1 and the normal activity YY form of EPHX*3 were close to one except GSTT1, which reached 1.86. The highest risk of polyneuropathy was found in smokers with GSTT1 null, who had a 3.7 times increased risk. Interactions between genes were analyzed and confirmed the increased OR for GSTT1, which was strongest if the patients had the low-activity HH form of EPHX*3 (OR 2.37). Our hypothesis is that the GSTT1 null polymorphism may be related to an impaired metabolism of toxic substances that could lead to nerve damage in the peripheral nervous system.
Angle-closure glaucoma (ACG) is a subset of glaucoma affecting 16 million people. Although 4 million people are bilaterally blind from ACG, the causative molecular mechanisms of ACG remain to be defined. High intraocular pressure induces glaucoma in ACG. High intraocular pressure traditionally was suggested to result from the iris blocking or closing the angle of the eye, thereby limiting aqueous humor drainage. Eyes from individuals with ACG often have a modestly decreased axial length, shallow anterior chamber and relatively large lens, features that predispose to angle closure. Here we show that genetic alteration of a previously unidentified serine protease (PRSS56) alters axial length and causes a mouse phenotype resembling ACG. Mutations affecting this protease also cause a severe decrease of axial length in individuals with posterior microphthalmia. Together, these data suggest that alterations of this serine protease may contribute to a spectrum of human ocular conditions including reduced ocular size and ACG.
Notch and Wnt pathways are key regulators of intestinal homeostasis and alterations in these pathways may lead to the development of colorectal cancer (CRC). In CRC the Apc/?-catenin genes in the Wnt signaling pathway are frequently mutated and active Notch signaling contributes to tumorigenesis by keeping the epithelial cells in a proliferative state. These pathways are simultaneously active in proliferative adenoma cells and a crosstalk between them has previously been suggested in normal development as well as in cancer.
Pheochromocytomas (PCCs) and paragangliomas (PGLs) are rare neuroendocrine tumors of the adrenal glands and the sympathetic and parasympathetic paraganglia. They can occur sporadically or as a part of different hereditary tumor syndromes. About 30% of PCCs and PGLs are currently believed to be caused by germline mutations and several novel susceptibility genes have recently been discovered. The clinical presentation, including localization, malignant potential, and age of onset, varies depending on the genetic background of the tumors. By reviewing more than 1700 reported cases of hereditary PCC and PGL, a thorough summary of the genetics and clinical features of these tumors is given, both as part of the classical syndromes such as multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 (MEN2), von Hippel-Lindau disease, neurofibromatosis type 1, and succinate dehydrogenase-related PCC-PGL and within syndromes associated with a smaller fraction of PCCs/PGLs, such as Carney triad, Carney-Stratakis syndrome, and MEN1. The review also covers the most recently discovered susceptibility genes including KIF1B?, EGLN1/PHD2, SDHAF2, TMEM127, SDHA, and MAX, as well as a comparison with the sporadic form. Further, the latest advances in elucidating the cellular pathways involved in PCC and PGL development are discussed in detail. Finally, an algorithm for genetic testing in patients with PCC and PGL is proposed.
The NALP3 inflammasome is a multiprotein complex that triggers caspase 1-mediated interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta) release. Mutations in the gene encoding NALP3 (NLRP3) underlie the cryopyrin-associated periodic syndrome (CAPS). The aim of this study was to report a novel NLRP3 mutation in 2 siblings of Swedish descent in whom symptoms first presented in adulthood.
The single nucleotide polymorphism SNP309 with a change from T to G in the promoter region of the MDM2 gene is shown to increase the MDM2 protein levels and attenuate the p53 levels and associates with disease progression in several tumors.
Bioactive metabolites downstream of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) generated prostaglandin H(2) (PGH(2)), in particular prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)), are thought to play critical roles during the development of colorectal tumors. Previous reports reveal that defects of the tumor suppressor adenomatosis polyposis coli (APC) contribute to COX-2 upregulation in colon tumor cells. We investigated whether a similar relation was present between APC functional status and the expression of microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1 (mPGES-1), which acts downstream of COX-2 and catalyses the terminal conversion of PGH(2) into PGE(2). Surprisingly, mPGES-1 mRNA and protein levels were upregulated upon induction of a wild type-APC carrying vector in HT29 colon cancer cells, and downregulated following siRNA silencing of APC in HCT-116 cells. mPGES-1 was overall enhanced in human colorectal tumor specimens versus corresponding non-tumor mucosa and, in accordance with data on HT29 and HCT116 cells, higher levels of mPGES-1 were observed among tumors carrying wild type versus mutant APC. RNAi silencing of beta-catenin and luciferase assays regarding the mPGES-1 promoter region did not reveal a role for APC or beta-catenin/Tcf in controlling mPGES-1 gene transcription. However, RNA degradation assays in HT29 cells revealed a suppressed degradation of mPGES-1 in the presence of wild type APC, implying that mPGES-1 mRNA is stabilized in the APC wild type state. Collectively, we demonstrate a novel association between APC functional status and mPGES-1 expression in colorectal tumor cells, being most likely related to reduced mPGES-1 mRNA degradation rate in the APC wild type state.
CARD8 and NLRP3 are constituents of the inflammasome which regulates interleukin 1beta production. The influence of polymorphisms in CARD8 and NLRP3 on rheumatoid arthritis (RA) susceptibility and severity were evaluated.
Autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (ARRP) is a genetically heterogeneous disorder. ARRP could be associated with extraocular manifestations that define specific syndromes such as Usher syndrome (USH) characterized by retinal degeneration and congenital hearing loss (HL). The USH type II (USH2) associates RP and mild-to-moderate HL with preserved vestibular function. At least three genes USH2A, the very large G-protein-coupled receptor, GPR98, and DFNB31 are responsible for USH2 syndrome. Here, we report on the segregation of non-syndromic ARRP and USH2 syndrome in a consanguineous Tunisian family, which was previously used to define USH2B locus. With regard to the co-occurrence of these two different pathologies, clinical and genetic reanalysis of the extended family showed (i) phenotypic heterogeneity within USH2 patients and (ii) excluded linkage to USH2B locus. Indeed, linkage analysis disclosed the cosegregation of the USH2 phenotype with the USH2C locus markers, D5S428 and D5S618, whereas the ARRP perfectly segregates with PDE6B flanking markers D4S3360 and D4S2930. Molecular analysis revealed two new missense mutations, p.Y6044C and p.W807R, occurring in GPR98 and PDE6B genes, respectively. In conclusion, our results show that the USH2B locus at chromosome 3p23-24.2 does not exist, and we therefore withdraw this locus designation. The combination of molecular findings for GPR98 and PDE6B genes enable us to explain the phenotypic heterogeneity and particularly the severe ocular affection first observed in one USH2 patient. This report presents an illustration of how consanguinity could increase familial clustering of multiple hereditary diseases within the same family.
Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) plays a significant role in tumor angiogenesis and is found to be overexpressed and involved in the development and progression of colorectal cancer (CRC). The VEGF gene contains several polymorphic sites known to influence VEGF expression. We examined the possible association between five polymorphisms, located in the promoter/5-untranslated region [-2578 (C/A), -2549 (del/ins 18 bp), -1154 (G/A), -634 (G/C)] or 3-untranslated region [+936 (C/T)] of the VEGF gene, and CRC susceptibility and clinicopathological characteristics in 302 Swedish CRC patients and 336 healthy randomly selected controls. Both genotypes and combined haplotypes were analyzed. No significant differences were observed when VEGF genotype/haplotype frequencies in the CRC cases and controls were compared, nor were any associations found between the genotypes/haplotypes and clinicopathological characteristics. However, when the -2578 C and +936 T alleles were combined, a small but significant association with CRC susceptibility was detected (OR=1.6, 95% CI 1.3-1.9, p=0.01). In addition, VEGF mRNA expression was determined in a subset of patients, revealing a 2-fold VEGF upregulation in CRC tissue compared to normal colonic mucosa, but no association between the genotypes or haplotypes and VEGF mRNA levels. Linkage analysis was performed, revealing that the polymorphisms in the promoter and 5-untranslated region were in tight linkage disequilibrium (LD) (__AMB__verbar;D__AMB__verbar;=0.91-1.00), while the +936 C/T polymorphism was only weakly associated with the others (__AMB__verbar;D__AMB__verbar;=0.05-0.19). In conclusion, VEGF is generally upregulated in colorectal tumors. However, the single nucleotide polymorphisms examined do not appear to influence the mRNA expression of VEGF in colorectal tumors, and most likely play a limited role in CRC development and progression.
Crohns disease (CD) is characterized by overproduction of proinflammatory cytokines like interleukin (IL)-1beta. Production of mature IL-1beta is dependent on a caspase-1-activating protein complex called the NALP3 inflammasome, composed of NALP3, ASC, and CARD8. NALP3 shares structural similarities with Nod2, and both of these proteins are required for bacteria-induced IL-1beta secretion. The combination of the polymorphisms CARD8 (C10X)and NALP3 (Q705K) was recently shown to be associated with rheumatoid arthritis.Our aim was to investigate whether these combined polymorphisms play a role in the susceptibility to CD.
Posterior microphthalmia (PM) is a relatively rare autosomal recessive condition with normal anterior segment and small posterior segment resulting in high hyperopia and retinal folding. It is an uncommon subtype of microphthalmia that has been mostly reported to coexist with several other ophthalmic conditions and to occur in sporadic cases. The membrane-type frizzled-related protein (MFRP) is the only gene so far reported implicated in autosomal recessive, non-syndromic and syndromic forms of PM. Here, we performed a clinical and genetic analysis using six consanguineous families ascertained from different regions of Tunisia and affected with non-syndromic PM that segregates as an autosomal recessive trait. To identify the disease-causing defect in these families, we first analysed MFRP gene, then some candidate genes (CHX10, OPA1, MITF, SOX2, CRYBB1-3 and CRYBA4) and loci (MCOP1, NNO1 and NNO2) previously implicated in different forms of microphthalmia. After exclusion of these genes and loci, we performed a genome-wide scan using a high density single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array 50 K in a large consanguineous pedigree. SNP genotyping revealed eight homozygous candidate regions on chromosomes 1, 2, 3, 6, 15, 17 and 21. Linkage analysis with additional microsatellite markers only retained the 2q37.1 region with a maximum LOD score of 8.85 obtained for D2S2344 at theta = 0.00. Further investigations are compatible for linkage of four more families to this region with a refined critical interval of 2.35 Mb. The screening of five candidate genes SAG, PDE6D, CHRND, CHRNG and IRK13 did not reveal any disease-causing mutation.
Mercury (Hg) exposure from dental amalgam fillings and thimerosal in vaccines is not a major health hazard, but adverse health effects cannot be ruled out in a small and more susceptible part of the exposed population. Individual differences in toxicokinetics may explain susceptibility to mercury. Inbred, H-2-congenic A.SW and B10.S mice and their F1- and F2-hybrids were given HgCl2 with 2.0 mg Hg/L drinking water and traces of (203)Hg. Whole-body retention (WBR) was monitored until steady state after 5 weeks, when the organ Hg content was assessed. Despite similar Hg intake, A.SW males attained a 20-30% significantly higher WBR and 2- to 5-fold higher total renal Hg retention/concentration than A.SW females and B10.S mice. A selective renal Hg accumulation but of lower magnitude was seen also in B10.S males compared with females. Differences in WBR and organ Hg accumulation are therefore regulated by non-H-2 genes and gender. Lymph nodes lacked the strain- and gender-dependent Hg accumulation profile of kidney, liver and spleen. After 15 days without Hg A.SW mice showed a 4-fold higher WBR and liver Hg concentration, but 11-fold higher renal Hg concentration, showing the key role for the kidneys in explaining the slower Hg elimination in A.SW mice. The trait causing higher mercury accumulation was not dominantly inherited in the F1 hybrids. F2 mice showed a large inter-individual variation in Hg accumulation, showing that multiple genetic factors influence the Hg toxicokinetics in the mouse. The genetically heterogeneous human population may therefore show a large variation in mercury toxicokinetics.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the role of sequence variants in the CYP2C8, ABCB1 and CYP3A4 genes and the CYP3A4 phenotype for the pharmacokinetics and toxicity of paclitaxel in ovarian cancer patients. Thirty-eight patients were treated with paclitaxel and carboplatin. The genotypes of CYP2C8*1B, *1C, *2, *3, *4, *5, *6, *7, *8 and P404A, ABCB1 G2677T/A and C3435T, as well as CYP3A4*1B, were determined by pyrosequencing. Phenotyping of CYP3A4 was performed in vivo with quinine as a probe. The patients were monitored for toxicity and 23 patients underwent a more extensive neurotoxicity evaluation. Patients heterozygous for G/A in position 2677 in ABCB1 had a significantly higher clearance of paclitaxel than most other ABCB1 variants. A lower clearance of paclitaxel was found for patients heterozygous for CYP2C8*3 when stratified according to the ABCB1 G2677T/A genotype. In addition, the CYP3A4 enzyme activity in vivo affected which metabolic pathway was dominant in each patient, but not the total clearance of paclitaxel. The exposure to paclitaxel correlated to the degree of neurotoxicity. Our findings suggest that interindividual variability in paclitaxel pharmacokinetics might be predicted by ABCB1 and CYP2C8 genotypes and provide useful information for individualized chemotherapy.
NACHT leucine-rich repeat- and PYD-containing (NLRP)3 protein controls the inflammasome by regulating caspase-1 activity and interleukin (IL)-1? processing. The contribution of IL-1? in the pathogenesis of psoriasis is well recognized. Polymorphisms in NLRP3 and caspase recruitment domain-containing protein (CARD)8, a negative regulator of caspase-1 activity, have been associated with susceptibility to common inflammatory diseases, such as Crohns disease and rheumatoid arthritis. To investigate the role for genetic variants in the NLRP3 inflammasome in psoriasis susceptibility. In a patient sample comprising 1988 individuals from 491 families and 1002 healthy controls, genotypes for four selected single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in NLRP3 (three SNPs) and CARD8 (one SNP) were determined by TaqMan(®) Allelic Discrimination. Using the transmission disequilibrium test (TDT), a significant increase in the transmission of the NLRP3 rs10733113G genotype to a subgroup of patients with more widespread psoriasis was demonstrated (P = 0.015). Using logistic regression analysis in 741 patients with psoriasis and 1002 controls, the CARD8 rs2043211 genotype was significantly different in cases and controls in overall terms [OR 1.3 (1.1-1.5), P = 0.004] and for both genders. Our data support the hypothesis that the inflammasome plays a role in psoriasis susceptibility.
Pheochromocytomas are neuroendocrine tumors of the adrenal medulla which can occur either sporadically or in the context of hereditary tumor syndromes. Whereas the genetic background of hereditary pheochromocytomas is becoming rather well-defined, very little is known about the more common sporadic form of the disease which constitutes ?70% of all cases. In this study, we elucidate some of the molecular mechanisms behind sporadic pheochromocytoma by performing a comprehensive analysis of copy number alterations, gene expression, promoter methylation and somatic mutations in the genes RET, VHL, NF1, SDHA, SDHB, SDHC, SDHD, SDHAF2, KIF1B?, TMEM127 and MAX, which have been associated with hereditary pheochromocytoma or paraganglioma. Our genomic and genetic analyses of 42 sporadic pheochromocytomas reveal that a large proportion (83%) has an altered copy number in at least one of the known susceptibility genes, often in association with an altered messenger RNA (mRNA) expression. Specifically, 11 sporadic tumors (26%) displayed a loss of one allele of the NF1 gene, which significantly correlated with a reduced NF1 mRNA expression. Subsequent sequencing of NF1 mRNA, followed by confirmation in the corresponding genomic DNA (gDNA), revealed somatic truncating mutations in 10 of the 11 tumors with NF1 loss. Our results thus suggest that the NF1 gene constitutes the most frequent (24%) target of somatic mutations so far known in sporadic pheochromocytomas.
Monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B) plays an important role in the metabolism of neuroactive and vasoactive amines in the central nervous system and peripheral tissues. Increased levels of MAO-B mRNA and enzymatic activity have been reported in platelets from patients with Parkinsons and Alzheimers diseases, however the triggers of enhanced mRNA levels are unknown. Our results demonstrate for the first time that G/A dimorphism in intron 13 sequence creates splicing enhancer thus stimulating intron 13 removal efficiency. The increased MAO-B protein levels might serve as a surrogate marker for - Parkinson disease.
Colorectal tumors are continuously exposed to an inflammatory environment, which together with mitogenic signals sustain several cancer hallmarks. Nuclear factor-kappa B (NF?B) is a major regulator of inflammation and variation in NF?B-associated genes could potentially be used as biomarkers to identify patients with increased risk of colorectal cancer (CRC) development, and/or a rapidly progressing disease. In this study, 348 CRC cases and 806 randomly selected healthy individuals from southeastern Sweden were examined with regard to seven polymorphisms in NF?B pathway-associated genes. Log-rank-tests and Cox proportional hazard regression analysis examined the association between the polymorphisms and CRC-specific survival, whereas chi-square tests and logistic regression analysis were used to test for associations between the polymorphisms and CRC susceptibility. Gene expression and loss of heterozygosity analyses of TNFAIP3 were carried out in a subset of tumors to assess its role as a tumor suppressor in CRC. Heterozygous and polymorphic TNFAIP3 (rs6920220), heterozygous NLRP3 (Q705K) and polymorphic NF?B -94 ATTG ins/del genotypes were found to be associated with poorer survival in patients diagnosed with invasive CRC (aHR = 5.2, 95% CI: 2.5-10.9, P < 0.001). TNFAIP3 mRNA levels were significantly decreased in tumors compared with adjacent non-neoplastic mucosa (P < 0.0001) and loss of heterozygosity of 6q23.3 (TNFAIP3) was detected in 17% of cases, whereas only 2.5% of the investigated specimens displayed TNFAIP3 gene mutations. We propose that TNFAIP3 (rs6920220), NLRP3 (Q705K) and NF?B -94 ATTG ins/del polymorphisms are associated with poor survival in patients with advanced CRC and may be used as prognostic markers. Experimental results indicate that TNFAIP3 may act as a tumor suppressor in CRC.
Pesticide exposure has been suggested to increase the risk to develop Parkinsons disease (PD). The arylesterase paraoxonase 1 (PON1) is mainly expressed in the liver and hydrolyzes organophosphates such as pesticides. The polymorphism Leu54Met (rs854560) in PON1, impairing enzyme activity and leading to decreased PON1 expression levels, has been reported to be associated with Parkinsons disease (PD). PON1 is part of a cluster on chromosome 7q21.3 together with PON2 and PON3. We investigated the occurrence of four additional polymorphisms in PON1 and two in PON2 in a Swedish PD case-control material. We found a significant association (p=0.007) with a PON1 promoter polymorphism, rs854571. The minor allele was more common among controls than PD cases which suggest a protective effect. This is strengthened by the fact that rs854571 is in strong linkage disequilibrium with another PON1 promoter polymorphism, rs854572, reported to increase PON1 gene expression. Our findings support the hypothesis that PON1 is involved in the etiology of PD and that higher PON1 levels are reducing the risk for PD.
The Q705K polymorphism in NLRP3 has been implicated in several chronic inflammatory diseases. In this study we determine the functional role of this commonly occurring polymorphism using an in-vitro system.
Genetic variants of NLRP3 and NLRP1 are known to modulate levels of pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin (IL)-1?. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association of NLRP3/NLRP1 polymorphisms with susceptibility and clinical features of malignant melanoma in a Swedish case-control study. Common variants in NLRP3/NLRP1 were investigated in sporadic malignant melanoma patients and healthy controls followed by analysis using logistic regression. NLRP3 variant (rs35829419) was significantly more common in male patients than in controls (OR, 2.22; CI, 1.27-3.86). Upon stratification, significant association with nodular melanoma was observed (OR, 2.89; CI, 1.33-6.30), which intensified in male patients (OR 4.03, CI 1.40-11.59). The NLRP1 variant (rs12150220) was significantly more common in fair-skinned female patients (OR, 1.85; CI, 1.04-3.33) and showed strong associations with nodular melanoma (OR, 6.03; CI, 1.33-25). Our data suggest that NLRP3/NLRP1 polymorphisms are associated with melanoma susceptibility; these findings warrant validation in other independent populations.
Neutrophils are key-players in the innate host defense and their programmed cell death and removal are essential for efficient resolution of inflammation. These cells recognize a variety of pathogens, and the NOD-like receptors (NLRs) have been suggested as intracellular sensors of microbial components and cell injury/stress. Some NLR will upon activation form multi-protein complexes termed inflammasomes that result in IL-1? production. NLR mutations are associated with auto-inflammatory syndromes, and our previous data propose NLRP3 (Q705K)/CARD-8 (C10X) polymorphisms to contribute to increased risk and severity of inflammatory disease by acting as genetic susceptibility factors. These gene products are components of the NALP3 inflammasome, and approximately 6.5% of the Swedish population are heterozygote carriers of these combined gene variants. Since patients carrying the Q705K/C10X polymorphisms display leukocytosis, the aim of the present study was to find out whether the inflammatory phenotype was related to dysfunctional apoptosis and impaired clearance of neutrophils by macrophages.
Pheochromocytomas (PCCs) develop from the adrenal medulla and are often part of a hereditary syndrome such as von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) syndrome. In VHL, only about 30 % of patients with a VHL missense mutation develop PCCs. Thus, additional genetic events leading to formation of such tumors in patients with VHL syndrome are sought. SDHAF2 (previously termed SDH5) and SDHD are both located on chromosome 11q and are required for the function of mitochondrial complex II. While SDHAF2 has been shown to be mutated in patients with paragangliomas (PGLs), SDHD mutations have been found both in patients with PCCs and in patients with PGLs.
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