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International journal of radiation biology, 93, 48--57
2017

Dose assessment intercomparisons within the RENEB network using G0-lymphocyte prematurely condensed chromosomes (PCC assay).

Terzoudi, Georgia I, Pantelias, Gabriel, Darroudi, Firouz, Barszczewska, Katarzyna, Buraczewska, Iwona, Depuydt, Julie, Georgieva, Dimka, Hadjidekova, Valeria, Hatzi, Vasiliki I, Karachristou, Ioanna, Karakosta, Maria, Meschini, Roberta, M'Kacher, Radhia, Montoro, Alegria, Palitti, Fabrizio, Pantelias, Antonio, Pepe, Gaetano, Ricoul, Michelle, Sabatier, Laure, Sebastià, Natividad, Sommer, Sylwester, Vral, Anne, Zafiropoulos, Demetre, Wojcik, Andrzej

Dose assessment intercomparisons within the RENEB network were performed for triage biodosimetry analyzing G0-lymphocyte PCC for harmonization, standardization and optimization of the PCC assay. Comparative analysis among different partners for dose assessment included shipment of PCC-slides and captured images to construct dose-response curves for up to 6 Gy γ-rays. Accident simulation exercises were performed to assess the suitability of the PCC assay by detecting speed of analysis and minimum number of cells required for categorization of potentially exposed individuals. Calibration data based on Giemsa-stained fragments in excess of 46 PCC were obtained by different partners using galleries of PCC images for each dose-point. Mean values derived from all scores yielded a linear dose-response with approximately 4 excess-fragments/cell/Gy. To unify scoring criteria, exercises were carried out using coded PCC-slides and/or coded irradiated blood samples. Analysis of samples received 24 h post-exposure was successfully performed using Giemsa staining (1 excess-fragment/cell/Gy) or centromere/telomere FISH-staining for dicentrics. Dose assessments by RENEB partners using appropriate calibration curves were mostly in good agreement. The PCC assay is quick and reliable for whole- or partial-body triage biodosimetry by scoring excess-fragments or dicentrics in G0-lymphocytes. Particularly, analysis of Giemsa-stained excess PCC-fragments is simple, inexpensive and its automation could increase throughput and scoring objectivity of the PCC assay.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1080/09553002.2016.1234725

eLife, 6
2017

Epigenetic regulation of lateralized fetal spinal gene expression underlies hemispheric asymmetries.

Ocklenburg, Sebastian, Schmitz, Judith, Moinfar, Zahra, Moser, Dirk, Klose, Rena, Lor, Stephanie, Kunz, Georg, Tegenthoff, Martin, Faustmann, Pedro, Francks, Clyde, Epplen, Jörg T, Kumsta, Robert, Güntürkün, Onur

Lateralization is a fundamental principle of nervous system organization but its molecular determinants are mostly unknown. In humans, asymmetric gene expression in the fetal cortex has been suggested as the molecular basis of handedness. However, human fetuses already show considerable asymmetries in arm movements before the motor cortex is functionally linked to the spinal cord, making it more likely that spinal gene expression asymmetries form the molecular basis of handedness. We analyzed genome-wide mRNA expression and DNA methylation in cervical and anterior thoracal spinal cord segments of five human fetuses and show development-dependent gene expression asymmetries. These gene expression asymmetries were epigenetically regulated by miRNA expression asymmetries in the TGF-β signaling pathway and lateralized methylation of CpG islands. Our findings suggest that molecular mechanisms for epigenetic regulation within the spinal cord constitute the starting point for handedness, implying a fundamental shift in our understanding of the ontogenesis of hemispheric asymmetries in humans.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.7554/eLife.22784

Indian J Hematol Blood Transfus, 32(2), 154–161
June, 2016

Evaluation of ETV6/RUNX1 Fusion and Additional Abnormalities Involving ETV6 and/or RUNX1 Genes Using FISH Technique in Patients with Childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.

Aydin, Cigdem, Cetin, Zafer, Manguoglu, Ayse Esra, Tayfun, Funda, Clark, Ozden Altiok, Kupesiz, Alphan, Akkaya, Bahar, Karauzum, Sibel Berker

Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common type of childhood leukemia. Specifically, ALL is a malignant disorder of the lymphoid progenitor cells, with a peak incidence among children aged 2-5 years. The t(12;21)(p13;q22) translocation occurs in 25 \% of childhood B cell precursor ALL. In this study, bone marrow samples were obtained from 165 patients with childhood ALL. We analyzed the t(12;21) translocation and other related abnormalities using the fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) technique with the ETV6(TEL)/RUNX1(AML1) ES dual color translocation probe. Conventional cytogenetic analyses were also performed. ETV6 and RUNX1 related chromosomal abnormalities were found in 42 (25.5 \%) of the 165 patients with childhood ALL. Among these 42 patients, structural changes were detected in 33 (78.6 \%) and numerical abnormalities in 9 (21.4 \%). The frequency of FISH abnormalities in pediatric ALL cases were as follows: 8.5 \% for t(12;21)(p13;q22) ETV6/RUNX1 fusion, 6.0 \% for RUNX1 amplification, 3.0 \% for tetrasomy/trisomy 21, 1.8 \% for ETV6 deletion, 1.21 \% for ETV6 deletion with RUNX1 amplification, 1.21 \% for ETV6 amplification with RUNX1 amplification, 0.6 \% for polyploidy, 0.6 \% for RUNX1 deletion, and 0.6 \% for diminished ETV6 signal. The most common structural abnormality was the t(12;21) translocation, followed by RUNX1 amplification and ETV6 deletion, while the most commonly observed numerical abnormality was trisomy 21.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1007/s12288-015-0557-7

Nucleic Acids Res
June, 2016

Chromosome thripsis by DNA double strand break clusters causes enhanced cell lethality, chromosomal translocations and 53BP1-recruitment.

Schipler, Agnes, Mladenova, Veronika, Soni, Aashish, Nikolov, Vladimir, Saha, Janapriya, Mladenov, Emil, Iliakis, George

Chromosome translocations are hallmark of cancer and of radiation-induced cell killing, reflecting joining of incongruent DNA-ends that alter the genome. Translocation-formation requires DNA end-joining mechanisms and incompletely characterized, permissive chromatin conditions. We show that chromatin destabilization by clusters of DNA double-strand-breaks (DSBs) generated by the I-SceI meganuclease at multiple, appropriately engineered genomic sites, compromises c-NHEJ and markedly increases cell killing and translocation-formation compared to single-DSBs. Translocation-formation from DSB-clusters utilizes Parp1 activity, implicating alt-EJ in their formation. Immunofluorescence experiments show that single-DSBs and DSB-clusters uniformly provoke the formation of single γ-H2AX foci, suggesting similar activation of early DNA damage response (DDR). Live-cell imaging also shows similar single-focus recruitment of the early-response protein MDC1, to single-DSBs and DSB-clusters. Notably, the late DDR protein, 53BP1 shows in live-cell imaging strikingly stronger recruitment to DSB-clusters as compared to single-DSBs. This is the first report that chromatin thripsis, in the form of engineered DSB-clusters, compromises first-line DSB-repair pathways, allowing alt-EJ to function as rescuing-backup. DSB-cluster-formation is indirectly linked to the increased biological effectiveness of high ionization-density radiations, such as the alpha-particles emitted by radon gas or the heavy-ions utilized in cancer therapy. Our observations provide the first direct mechanistic explanation for this long-known effect.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1093/nar/gkw487

Chromosome Res
May, 2016

Karyotype diversity suggests that Laonastes aenigmamus (Laotian rock rat) (Rodentia, Diatomyidae) is a multi-specific genus.

Richard, Florence, Gerbault-Seureau, Michèle, Douangboupha, Bounneuang, Keovichit, Kham, Hugot, Jean-Pierre, Dutrillaux, Bernard

Laonastes aenigmamus (Khanyou) is a recently described rodent species living in geographically separated limestone formations of the Khammuan Province in Lao PDR. Chromosomes of 21 specimens of L. aenigmamus were studied using chromosome banding as well as fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) techniques using human painting, telomere repeats, and 28S rDNA probes. Four different karyotypes were established. Study with human chromosome paints and FISH revealed that four large chromosomes were formed by multiple common tandem fusions, with persistence of some interstitial telomeres. The rearrangements separating the different karyotypes (I to IV) were also reconstructed. Various combinations of Robertsonian translocations or tandem fusions involving the same chromosomes differentiate these karyotypes. These rearrangements create a strong gametic barrier, which isolates specimens with karyotype II from the others. C-banding and FISH with telomere repeats also exhibit large and systematized differences between karyotype II and others. These data indicate an ancient reproductive separation and suggest that Laonastes is not a mono-specific genus.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1007/s10577-016-9527-7

Am J Hematol, 91(2), 233–237
February, 2016

Classic and extracavitary primary effusion lymphoma in 51 HIV-infected patients from a single institution.

Guillet, Stéphanie, Gérard, Laurence, Meignin, Véronique, Agbalika, Felix, Cuccini, Wendy, Denis, Blandine, Katlama, Christine, Galicier, Lionel, Oksenhendler, Eric

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-associated primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) is a rare B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma with poor prognosis. Lymphoma cells are always infected with human herpesvirus-8 (HHV-8) and in most cases coinfected with Epstein-Barr virus. In classic presentation, PEL is characterized by body cavity effusions with or without mass lesions. A variant with only extracavitary localization has also been described. We report on a large single-center series of patients with PEL in the era of combined antiretroviral therapy (cART). The main objective was to compare the characteristics and the outcome of patients with classic (n = 34) and extracavitary (n = 17) variant PEL. At PEL diagnosis, no major difference was observed between the two groups in terms of demographic and HIV characteristics. Extracavitary localizations were exclusively nodal in six patients and involved various organs in 11 patients. Another HHV-8-associated disease was observed in 31 patients, Kaposi sarcoma in 25, and multicentric Castleman disease in 18 patients, without difference between the two groups. Thirty-two patients were treated with CHOP associated with high-dose methotrexate, 13 were treated with CHOP-derived regimen alone, and six patients received low-dose/no chemotherapy. Complete remission was achieved in 21 (62\%) and seven (41\%) patients of the classic and extracavitary groups, respectively. The median overall survival (OS) was 10.2 months. Despite a higher disease-free survival in the extracavitary group, there was no difference in OS between the two variants. Based on this series, characteristics of classic and extracavitary variants were very close. Although prognosis of PEL remains very severe in cART era, the median survival compares favorably with earlier series.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1002/ajh.24251

Reprod Domest Anim, 51(1), 171–174
February, 2016

A Non-Reciprocal Autosomal Translocation 64,XX, t(4;10)(q21;p15) in an Arabian Mare with Repeated Early Embryonic Loss.

Ghosh, S., Das, P. J., Avila, F., Thwaits, B. K., Chowdhary, B. P., Raudsepp, T.

Balanced autosomal translocations are a known cause for repeated early embryonic loss (REEL) in horses. In most cases, carriers of such translocations are phenotypically normal, but the chromosomal aberration negatively affects gametogenesis giving rise to both genetically balanced and unbalanced gametes. The latter, if involved in fertilization, result in REEL, whereas gametes with the balanced form of translocation will pass the defect into next generation. Therefore, in order to reduce the incidence of REEL, identification of translocation carriers is critical. Here, we report about a phenotypically normal 3-year-old Arabian mare that had repeated resorption of conceptuses prior to day 45 of gestation and was diagnosed with REEL. Conventional and molecular cytogenetic analyses revealed that the mare had normal chromosome number 64,XX but carried a non-mosaic and non-reciprocal autosomal translocation t(4;10)(q21;p15). This is a novel translocation described in horses with REEL and the first such report in Arabians. Previous cases of REEL due to autosomal translocations have exclusively involved Thoroughbreds. The findings underscore the importance of routine cytogenetic screening of breeding animals.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1111/rda.12636

Mol Cytogenet, 9, 38
2016

Rare case of Killian-Pallister syndrome associated with idiopathic short stature detected with fluorescent in situ hybridization on buccal smear.

Sukarova-Angelovska, Elena, Kocova, Mirjana, Ilieva, Gordana, Angelkova, Natalija, Kochova, Elena

Killian-Pallister syndrome (KPS) is a rare form of chromosomal mosaicism and is defined by the existence of an extra chromosome 12 in some cell lines in one individual. The degree of mosaicism varies among tissues and dictates the clinical presentation of the syndrome. The clinical features of Killian-Pallister syndrome include mental retardation, typical facial dysmorphism and pigmentation defects.We present a rare case of Killian-Pallister syndrome with severe form of the disease associated with isolated growth hormone deficiency and low-rate mosaicism on buccal smear. The absence of a marker chromosome 12p in lymphocyte cultures and the low degree of mosaicism lead to frequent misdiagnosis of this condition.The selection of tissue sampling is crucial in establishing the diagnosis of Killian-Pallister syndrome. Fluorescent in situ hybridisation on buccal smear remains the golden standard as a screening method if a suspicion of the syndrome exists.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1186/s13039-016-0239-7

Comp Cytogenet, 10(1), 45–59
2016

Sex chromosome diversity in Armenian toad grasshoppers (Orthoptera, Acridoidea, Pamphagidae).

Bugrov, Alexander G., Jetybayev, Ilyas E., Karagyan, Gayane H., Rubtsov, Nicolay B.

Although previous cytogenetic analysis of Pamphagidae grasshoppers pointed to considerable karyotype uniformity among most of the species in the family, our study of species from Armenia has discovered other, previously unknown karyotypes, differing from the standard for Pamphagidae mainly in having unusual sets of sex chromosomes. Asiotmethis turritus (Fischer von Waldheim, 1833), Paranocaracris rubripes (Fischer von Waldheim, 1846), and Nocaracris cyanipes (Fischer von Waldheim, 1846) were found to have the karyotype 2n♂=16+neo-XY and 2n♀=16+neo-XX, the neo-X chromosome being the result of centromeric fusion of an ancient acrocentric X chromosome and a large acrocentric autosome. The karyotype of Paranothrotes opacus (Brunner von Wattenwyl, 1882) was found to be 2n♂=14+X1X2Y and 2n♀=14+X1X1X2X2., the result of an additional chromosome rearrangement involving translocation of the neo-Y and another large autosome. Furthermore, evolution of the sex chromosomes in these species has involved different variants of heterochromatinization and miniaturization of the neo-Y. The karyotype of Eremopeza festiva (Saussure, 1884), in turn, appeared to have the standard sex determination system described earlier for Pamphagidae grasshoppers, 2n♂=18+X0 and 2n♀=18+XX, but all the chromosomes of this species were found to have small second C-positive arms. Using fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) with 18S rDNA and telomeric (TTAGG)n DNA repeats to yield new data on the structural organization of chromosomes in the species studied, we found that for most of them, clusters of repeats homologous to 18S rDNA localize on two, three or four pairs of autosomes and on the X. In Eremopeza festiva, however, FISH with labelled 18S rDNA painted C-positive regions of all autosomes and the X chromosome; clusters of telomeric repeats localized primarily on the ends of the chromosome arms. Overall, we conclude that the different stages of neo-Y degradation revealed in the Pamphagidae species studied make the family a very promising and useful model for studying sex chromosome evolution.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.3897/CompCytogen.v10i1.6407

Genet Sel Evol, 48, 12
2016

The second highest chromosome count among vertebrates is observed in cultured sturgeon and is associated with genome plasticity.

Havelka, Milo\vs, Bytyutskyy, Dmytro, Symonová, Radka, Ráb, Petr, Flaj\vshans, Martin

One of the five basal actinopterygian lineages, the Chondrostei, including sturgeon, shovelnose, and paddlefish (Order Acipenseriformes) show extraordinary ploidy diversity associated with three rounds of lineage-specific whole-genome duplication, resulting in three levels of ploidy in sturgeon. Recently, incidence of spontaneous polyploidization has been reported among cultured sturgeon and it could have serious negative implications for the economics of sturgeon farming. We report the occurrence of seven spontaneous heptaploid (7n) Siberian sturgeon Acipenser baerii, which is a functional tetraploid species (4n) with ~245 chromosomes. Our aims were to assess ploidy level and chromosome number of the analysed specimens and to identify the possible mechanism that underlies the occurrence of spontaneous additional chromosome sets in their genome.Among 150 specimens resulting from the mating of a tetraploid (4n) A. baerii (~245 chromosomes) dam with a hexaploid (6n) A. baerii (~368 chromosomes) sire, 143 displayed a relative DNA content that corresponds to pentaploidy (5n) with an absolute DNA content of 8.98 ± 0.03 pg DNA per nucleus and nuclear area of 35.3 ± 4.3 μm(2) and seven specimens exhibited a relative DNA content that corresponds to heptaploidy (7n), with an absolute DNA content of 15.02 ± 0.04 pg DNA per nucleus and nuclear area of 48.4 ± 5.1 μm(2). Chromosome analyses confirmed a modal number of ~437 chromosomes in these heptaploid (7n) individuals. DNA genotyping of eight microsatellite loci followed by parental assignment confirmed spontaneous duplication of the maternal chromosome sets via retention of the second polar body in meiosis II as the mechanism for the formation of this unusual chromosome number and ploidy level in a functional tetraploid A. baerii.We report the second highest chromosome count among vertebrates in cultured sturgeon (~437) after the schizothoracine cyprinid Ptychobarbus dipogon with ~446 chromosomes. The finding also represents the highest documented chromosome count in Acipenseriformes, and the first report of a functional heptaploid (7n) genome composition in sturgeon. To our knowledge, this study provides the first clear evidence of a maternal origin for spontaneous polyploidization in cultured A. baerii. To date, all available data indicate that spontaneous polyploidization occurs frequently among cultured sturgeons.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1186/s12711-016-0194-0

Blood Cancer J, 5, e374
2015

Four genetic lymphoma-specific events (MYC, BCL2, BCL6 and CCND1) identified in a high grade B lymphoma case.

Ittel, A., Hélias, C., Wissler, M. P., Toussaint, E., Miguet, L., Chenard, M. P., Monier, L., Gervais, C., Mauvieux, L.

In the WHO classification, double or triple-hit lymphoma depicts rare and aggressive lymphomas displaying BCL2 and/or MYC and/or BCL6 gene rearrangements that are categorized as B-cell lymphomas unclassified, with features intermediate between diffuse B-cell lymphoma and Burkitt lymphoma. Bacher et al.2 described an interesting series of 10 cases of such neoplasms. In addition, they reported the two first cases displaying four different lymphoma-specific events (quadruple hit) involving the genes MYC, BCL2, BCL6 and CCND1. We describe here a third case occurring in a 79-year-old male patient suffering from paraesthesias for 4 months who was referred for polyneuritis in a context of poor general condition. Clinical examination showed the presence of numerous axillary, supraclavicular, mediastinal and inguinal lymphadenopathies, neuro-meningeal invasion and skin infiltration. The biopsy of a left arm skin nodule revealed large proliferating cells (Ki-67 80%) stained by anti-CD20, BCL2 and BCL6 antibodies, CD10 and CD23 remaining negative, consistent with the diagnosis of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), not otherwise specified. Blood cell counts showed 8.1 × 109/l leukocytes, 13.2 g/dl hemoglobin, 166 × 109/l platelets. LDH and β-2 microglobulin were elevated (989 U/I and 9.14 mg/l, respectively). Blood cell film examination showed the presence of 28% abnormal lymphocytes (medium sized, with intense basophilia, irregular nuclear contours, slightly clumped chromatin and frequent prominent nucleoli) suggestive of a high grade lymphoma. Flow cytometry revealed a lambda immunoglobulin light chain restriction. These cells expressed pan-B markers such as CD19, CD20, FMC7, CD22, with weak CD5 and CD43 positivity. CD10 and 23 were negative. Both the morphology and immunophenotype of the blood cells favored a pleomorphic mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) aggressive variant diagnosis. Cytogenetic study performed in the WBCs found a complex hyperdiploid karyotype (47 chromosomes, Figure 1) with a t(3;22) translocation involving the BCL6 and IGL genes, a structural abnormality of chromosome 8 resulting in juxtaposition of 5′ MYC and BCL2 in fluorescence in situ hybridization (with break of the MYC probe), a derivative chromosome 18 from a t(14;18) translocation with fusion of 5′IGH and BCL2, and a t(11;14) complex translocation involving IGH and CCND1 (Figure 2). Other numeral (trisomy 12) and structural abnormalities (involving the 1, 7, 14 and 21 chromosomes) were also detected (Figure 1). Overexpression of cyclin D1 was detected in the WBCs by real-time quantitative PCR, as well as in the skin lesion using immunochemistry. Anti-SOX11 antibody staining was found to be negative. Chemotherapy combining rituximab, ifosfamide, cytosine arabinoside and intrathecal methotrexate was initiated, but the patient died 4 months after the diagnosis. This third case of quadruple-hit lymphoma underlines the complexity of the classification of such aggressive malignancies. Initial rearrangement of the CCND1 gene characterizes MCL that may harbor in very rare cases additional rearrangements of MYC or BCL6, but histological transformation to typical large cell lymphoma is not retained in the WHO classification. In addition, cyclin D1 overexpression is considered to be a rare feature in DLBCL. Recently, Ok et al.3 proposed to reclassify DLBCL with expression of cyclin D1, CCND1 chromosomal rearrangement and CD5 positivity as an aggressive pleomorphic MCL variant. However, no observation of multiple lymphoma-specific gene rearrangements was described in that study. Juskevicius et al.4 suggest the existence of a ‘gray zone’ in which morphologic, clinical and genetic features are insufficient to segregate lymphomas with overexpression of cyclin D1/translocations involving CCND1 between blastoid MCL and cyclin D1-positive DLBCL. Regarding the immunophenotyping and molecular data, our case is possibly a genetically unstable aggressive pleomorphic MCL variant, which acquired three additional genetic hits.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1038/bcj.2015.99

Cytogenet Genome Res, 147(2-3), 144–153
2015

Comparative Cytogenetics of the Congo African Grey Parrot (Psittacus erithacus).

Seibold-Torres, Cassandra, Owens, Elaine, Chowdhary, Renuka, Ferguson-Smith, Malcolm A., Tizard, Ian, Raudsepp, Terje

The Congo African grey parrot (Psittacus erithacus, PER) is an endemic species of Central Africa, valued for its intelligence and listed as vulnerable due to poaching and habitat destruction. Improved knowledge about the P. erithacus genome is needed to address key biological questions and conservation of this species. The P. erithacus genome was studied using conventional and molecular cytogenetic approaches including Zoo-FISH. P. erithacus has a 'typical' parrot karyotype with 2n = 62-64 and 8 pairs of macrochromosomes. A distinct feature was a sharp macro-microchromosome boundary. Telomeric sequences were present at all chromosome ends and interstitially in PER2q, the latter coinciding with a C-band. NORs mapped to 4 pairs of microchromosomes which is in contrast to a single NOR in ancestral type avian karyotypes. Zoo-FISH with chicken macrochromosomes GGA1-9 and Z revealed patterns of conserved synteny similar to many other avian groups, though neighboring synteny combinations of GGA6/7, 8/9, and 1/4 were distinctive only to parrots. Overall, P. erithacus shared more Zoo-FISH patterns with neotropical macaws than Australian species such as cockatiel and budgerigar. The observations suggest that Psittaciformes karyotypes have undergone more extensive evolutionary rearrangements compared to the majority of other avian genomes.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1159/000444136

Nat Genet, 46(11), 1239–1244
November, 2014

Mutations in SPRTN cause early onset hepatocellular carcinoma, genomicinstability and progeroid features.

Davor Lessel, Bruno Vaz, Swagata Halder, Paul J. Lockhart, Ivana Marinovic-Terzic, Jaime Lopez-Mosqueda, Melanie Philipp, Joe C H. Sim, Katherine R. Smith, Judith Oehler, Elisa Cabrera, Raimundo Freire, Kate Pope, Amsha Nahid, Fiona Norris, Richard J. Leventer, Martin B. Delatycki, Gotthold Barbi, Simon von Ameln, Josef Högel, Marina Degoricija, Regina Fertig, Martin D. Burkhalter, Kay Hofmann, Holger Thiele, Janine Altmüller, Gudrun Nürnberg, Peter Nürnberg, Melanie Bahlo, George M. Martin, Cora M. Aalfs, Junko Oshima, Janos Terzic, David J. Amor, Ivan Dikic, Kristijan Ramadan, Christian Kubisch

Age-related degenerative and malignant diseases represent major challenges for health care systems. Elucidation of the molecular mechanisms underlying carcinogenesis and age-associated pathologies is thus of growing biomedical relevance. We identified biallelic germline mutations in SPRTN (also called C1orf124 or DVC1) in three patients from two unrelated families. All three patients are affected by a new segmental progeroid syndrome characterized by genomic instability and susceptibility toward early onset hepatocellular carcinoma. SPRTN was recently proposed to have a function in translesional DNA synthesis and the prevention of mutagenesis. Our in vivo and in vitro characterization of identified mutations has uncovered an essential role for SPRTN in the prevention of DNA replication stress during general DNA replication and in replication-related G2/M-checkpoint regulation. In addition to demonstrating the pathogenicity of identified SPRTN mutations, our findings provide a molecular explanation of how SPRTN dysfunction causes accelerated aging and susceptibility toward carcinoma.

J Trop Pediatr, 60(2), 134–140
April, 2014

Effect of therapeutic hypothermia on DNA damage and neurodevelopmental outcome among term neonates with perinatal asphyxia: a randomized controlled trial.

Gane, Bahubali D., Bhat, Vishnu, Rao, Ramachandra, Nandhakumar, S., Harichandrakumar, K. T., Adhisivam, B.

To study the effect of therapeutic hypothermia (TH) on deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) damage and the neurodevelopmental outcome in term babies with perinatal asphyxia.Babies in the hypothermia group were cooled for the first 72 h, using gel packs. Rectal temperature of 33-34°C was maintained. Blood sample was collected before, at 36 h and after completion of TH for assessment of comet assay and 8-hydroxy2-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG). Infants were followed up till 12 months.Baseline parameters were similar. After 72 h, the hypothermia group showed lower olive tail moment (12.88 ± 2.14) than the control group (22.16 ± 5.26) (p < 0.001). 8-HDG levels increased significantly in the control group (1252.87 ± 357.07) as compared to the hypothermia group (757.03 ± 198.49) (p < 0.001). Neurodevelopmental assessment at 12 months showed significantly low motor and mental developmental quotient in the control than hypothermia group.TH reduces oxidative stress-induced DNA damage and improves neurodevelopmental outcome. <Trial registration No: CTRI/2011/10/002094>

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1093/tropej/fmt098

Mod Pathol, 27(1), 107–112
January, 2014

EGFR alterations and EML4-ALK rearrangement in primary adenocarcinoma of the urinary bladder.

Riley E. Alexander, Rodolfo Montironi, Antonio Lopez-Beltran, Sean R. Williamson, Mingsheng Wang, Kristin M. Post, Joyashree D. Sen, Ashley K. Arnold, Shaobo Zhang, Xiaoyan Wang, Michael O. Koch, Noah M. Hahn, Timothy A. Masterson, Gregory T. Maclennan, Darrell D. Davidson, Eva Compérat, Liang Cheng

The identification of mutations in epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and translocations involving anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) in lung adenocarcinoma has drastically changed understanding of the disease and led to the development of targeted therapies. Adenocarcinoma of the urinary bladder is rare and poorly understood at the molecular level. We undertook this study to determine whether EGFR mutations, increases in EGFR copy number, or ALK translocations are present in these tumors. Twenty-eight cases of primary bladder adenocarcinoma were analyzed. For EGFR mutational analysis, PCR-amplified products were analyzed on the Q24 Pyrosequencer with Qiagen EGFR Pyro Kits. All cases were analyzed via fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) using Vysis ALK Break Apart FISH Probes for detection of ALK chromosomal translocation and Vysis Dual Color Probes to assess for increased gene copy number of EGFR. None of the 28 cases examined showed mutational events in EGFR or ALK rearrangements. EGFR polysomy was seen in 10 out of 28 (36\%) cases. No correlation with EGFR polysomy was seen in the tumors with respect to age, histologic subtypes, pathologic stage, or lymph node metastasis. In summary, EGFR mutations and ALK rearrangements do not appear to be involved in the development of primary adenocarcinoma of the urinary bladder. A subgroup of cases (36\%), however, demonstrated increased gene copy number of EGFR by FISH.

Nat Commun, 5, 3695
2014

Chromatin retention of DNA damage sensors DDB2 and XPC through loss of p97 segregase causes genotoxicity.

Marjo-Riitta Puumalainen, Davor Lessel, Peter Rüthemann, Nina Kaczmarek, Karin Bachmann, Kristijan Ramadan, Hanspeter Naegeli

DNA damage recognition subunits such as DDB2 and XPC protect the human skin from ultraviolet (UV) light-induced genome instability and cancer, as demonstrated by the devastating inherited syndrome xeroderma pigmentosum. Here we show that the beneficial DNA repair response triggered by these two genome caretakers critically depends on a dynamic spatiotemporal regulation of their homeostasis. The prolonged retention of DDB2 and XPC in chromatin, because of a failure to readily remove both recognition subunits by the ubiquitin-dependent p97/VCP/Cdc48 segregase complex, leads to impaired DNA excision repair of UV lesions. Surprisingly, the ensuing chromosomal aberrations in p97-deficient cells are alleviated by a concomitant downregulation of DDB2 or XPC. Also, genome instability resulting from an excess of DDB2 persisting in UV-irradiated cells is prevented by concurrent p97 overexpression. Our findings demonstrate that DNA damage sensors and repair initiators acquire unexpected genotoxic properties if not controlled by timely extraction from chromatin.

Neoplasia, 15(11), 1301–1313
November, 2013

Alternative Lengthening of Telomeres: Recurrent Cytogenetic Aberrations and Chromosome Stability under Extreme Telomere Dysfunction.

Despoina Sakellariou, Maria Chiourea, Christina Raftopoulou, Sarantis Gagos

Human tumors using the alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT) exert high rates of telomere dysfunction. Numerical chromosomal aberrations are very frequent, and structural rearrangements are widely scattered among the genome. This challenging context allows the study of telomere dysfunction-driven chromosomal instability in neoplasia (CIN) in a massive scale. We used molecular cytogenetics to achieve detailed karyotyping in 10 human ALT neoplastic cell lines. We identified 518 clonal recombinant chromosomes affected by 649 structural rearrangements. While all human chromosomes were involved in random or clonal, terminal, or pericentromeric rearrangements and were capable to undergo telomere healing at broken ends, a differential recombinatorial propensity of specific genomic regions was noted. We show that ALT cells undergo epigenetic modifications rendering polycentric chromosomes functionally monocentric, and because of increased terminal recombinogenicity, they generate clonal recombinant chromosomes with interstitial telomeric repeats. Losses of chromosomes 13, X, and 22, gains of 2, 3, 5, and 20, and translocation/deletion events involving several common chromosomal fragile sites (CFSs) were recurrent. Long-term reconstitution of telomerase activity in ALT cells reduced significantly the rates of random ongoing telomeric and pericentromeric CIN. However, the contribution of CFS in overall CIN remained unaffected, suggesting that in ALT cells whole-genome replication stress is not suppressed by telomerase activation. Our results provide novel insights into ALT-driven CIN, unveiling in parallel specific genomic sites that may harbor genes critical for ALT cancerous cell growth.

Stem Cell Res, 12(1), 1–10
September, 2013

uPAR-controlled oncolytic adenoviruses eliminate cancer stem cellsin human pancreatic tumors.

Luciano Sobrevals, Ana Mato-Berciano, Nerea Urtasun, Adela Mazo, Cristina Fillat

Pancreatic tumors contain cancer stem cells highly resistant to chemotherapy. The identification of therapies that can eliminate this population of cells might provide with more effective treatments. In the current work we evaluated the potential of oncolytic adenoviruses to act against pancreatic cancer stem cells (PCSC). PCSC from two patient-derived xenograft models were isolated from orthotopic pancreatic tumors treated with saline, or with the chemotherapeutic agent gemcitabine. An enrichment in the number of PCSC expressing the cell surface marker CD133 and a marked enhancement on tumorsphere formation was observed in gemcitabine treated tumors. No significant increase in the CD44, CD24, and epithelial-specific antigen (ESA) positive cells was observed. Neoplastic sphere-forming cells were susceptible to adenoviral infection and exposure to oncolytic adenoviruses resulted in elevated cytotoxicity with both Adwt and the tumor specific AduPARE1A adenovirus. In vivo, intravenous administration of a single dose of AduPARE1A in human-derived pancreatic xenografts led to a remarkable anti-tumor effect. In contrast to gemcitabine AduPARE1A treatment did not result in PCSC enrichment. No enrichment on tumorspheres neither on the CD133(+) population was detected. Therefore our data provide evidences of the relevance of uPAR-controlled oncolytic adenoviruses for the elimination of pancreatic cancer stem cells.

Comp Cytogenet, 7(3), 205–215
2013

Karyotype and chromosome banding of endangered crucian carp, Carassius carassius (Linnaeus, 1758) (Teleostei, Cyprinidae).

Martin Knytl, LukáÅ¡ Kalous, Petr Ráb

The karyotype and other chromosomal characteristics the crucian carp (Carassius carassius (Linnaeus, 1758)) were revealed by means of conventional banding protocols (C, CMA3, AgNOR). The diploid chromosome number (2n) in this species was 100. Its karyotype was composed of 10 pairs of metacentric, 18 pairs of submetacentric and 22 pairs of subtelo- to acrocentric chromosomes without any microchromosomes. C-banding identified blocks of telomeric heterochromatin on seven chromosome pairs. The NORs were situated on the p arms of the 14(th) pair of submetacentric chromosomes and on the p arms of the 32(nd) pair of subtelo-acrocentric chromosomes; AgNOR-positive signals corresponded to the CMA3-positive signals. These chromosome characteristics may suggest a paleo-allotetraploid origin of Carassius carassius genome.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.3897/CompCytogen.v7i3.5411

Genet Mol Res, 12(2), 1303–1310
2013

Karyotype characterization reveals active 45S rDNA sites located on chromosome termini in Smilax rufescens (Smilacaceae).

D. Pizzaia, V. M. Oliveira, A. R. Martins, B. Appezzato-da-Glória, E. Forni-Martins, M L R. Aguiar-Perecin

The genus Smilax (Smilacaceae) includes species of medicinal interest; consequently, their identification is important for the control of raw material used in the manufacture of phytotherapeutic products. We investigated the karyotype of Smilax rufescens in order to look for patterns that would be useful for comparative studies of this genus. To accomplish this, we developed procedures to grow plants and optimize root pretreatment with mitotic fuse inhibitors to obtain metaphase spreads showing clear chromosome morphology. The karyotype, analyzed in Feulgen-stained preparations, was asymmetric, with N = 16 chromosomes gradually decreasing in size; the larger ones were subtelocentric and the smaller chromosomes were submetacentric or metacentric. Nearly terminal secondary constrictions were visualized on the short arm of chromosome pairs 7, 11, and 14, but they were clearly detected only in one of the homologues of each pair. The nucleolus organizer regions (NORs) were mapped by silver staining and fluorescent in situ hybridization of 45S rDNA probes. Silver signals (Ag-NORs) colocalized with rDNA loci were detected at the termini of the short arm of 6 chromosomes. The secondary constriction heteromorphism observed in Feulgen-stained metaphases suggests that differential rRNA gene expression between homologous rDNA loci can occur, resulting in different degrees of chromatin decondensation. In addition, a heteromorphic chromosome pair was identified and was interpreted as being a sex chromosome pair in this dioecious species.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.4238/2013.April.25.1