EpigenDx

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Hopkinton, MA, United States
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Reed K.,Laurentian University | Reed K.,Sudbury Regional Hospital | Poulin M.L.,EpigenDx | Yan L.,EpigenDx | And 2 more authors.
Analytical Biochemistry | Year: 2010

DNA methylation strongly affects chromatin structure and the regulation of gene expression. For many years, bisulfite sequencing PCR (BSP) has served as the "gold standard" for measuring DNA methylation. However, with the evolution of pyrosequencing as a tool to evaluate DNA methylation, the need arises to compare the relative efficiencies of the two techniques in measuring DNA methylation. We provide for the first time a direct assessment of BSP and pyrosequencing to detect and quantify hypomethylation, hypermethylation, and mixed methylation of the ABCB1 promoter in various drug-sensitive and drug-resistant MCF-7 breast cancer cell lines through head-to-head experimentation. Our findings indicate that although both methods can reliably detect increased, decreased, and mixed methylation of DNA, BSP appears to be more sensitive than pyrosequencing at detecting strong hypermethylation of DNA. However, we also observed greater variability in the methylation of CpG sites by BSP, possibly due to the additional bacterial cloning step required by BSP over pyrosequencing. BSP and pyrosequencing equally detected hypomethylation and mixed methylation of DNA. The ability of pyrosequencing to reliably detect differences in DNA methylation across cell populations without requiring the cloning of bisulfite-treated DNA into bacterial expression vectors was seen as a major advantage of this technique. © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Kang S.W.,Inje University | Shih P.-A.B.,University of California at San Diego | Mathew R.O.,Veterans Affairs Medical Center | Mahata M.,University of California at San Diego | And 9 more authors.
BMC Nephrology | Year: 2011

Background: Renal kallikrein (KLK1) synthesis and urinary excretion are reportedly diminished during AKI (acute kidney injury) in animal models, and provision of kallikrein abrogates renal injury in this setting, but data in human AKI is limited. Therefore we first examined KLK1 renal excretion in human AKI, and then probed potential endocrine and epigenetic mechanisms for its alterations. Methods. KLK1 enzymatic activity excretion was evaluated in urine from patients with established or incipient AKI, versus healthy/non-hospital as well as ICU controls. Endocrine control of KLK1 excretion was then probed by catecholamine and aldosterone measurements in established AKI versus healthy controls. To examine epigenetic control of KLK1 synthesis, we tested blood and urine DNA for changes in promoter CpG methylation of the KLK1 gene, as well as LINE-1 elements, by bisulfite sequencing. Results: Patients with early/incipient AKI displayed a modest reduction of KLK1 excretion, but unexpectedly, established AKI displayed substantially elevated urine KLK1 excretion, ∼11-fold higher than healthy controls, and ∼3-fold greater than ICU controls. We then probed potential mechanisms of the change. Established AKI patients had lower SBP, higher heart rate, and higher epinephrine excretion than healthy controls, though aldosterone excretion was not different. Promoter KLK1 CpG methylation was higher in blood than urine DNA, while KLK1 methylation in blood DNA was significantly higher in established AKI than healthy controls, though KLK1 methylation in urine tended to be higher in AKI, directionally consistent with earlier/incipient but not later/established changes in KLK1 excretion in AKI. On multivariate ANOVA, AKI displayed coordinate changes in KLK1 excretion and promoter methylation, though directionally opposite to expectation. Control (LINE-1 repetitive element) methylation in blood and urine DNA was similar between AKI and controls. Conclusions: Unexpectedly, increased KLK1 excretion in AKI patients was found; this increase is likely to be due in part to increments in adrenergic tone during BP depression. Epigenetic changes at KLK1 may also play a role in early changes of KLK1 expression and thus AKI susceptibility or recovery. © 2011 Kang et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Irahara N.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | Baba Y.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | Nosho K.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | Shima K.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | And 8 more authors.
Diagnostic Molecular Pathology | Year: 2010

Activating mutations in members of the RAS oncogene family (KRAS, HRAS, and NRAS) have been found in a variety of human malignancies, suggesting a dominant role in carcinogenesis. In colon cancers, KRAS mutations are common and clearly contribute to malignant progression. The frequency of NRAS mutations and their relationship with clinical, pathologic, and molecular features remains uncertain. We developed and validated a Pyroseqencing assay to detect NRAS mutations at codons 12, 13, and 61. Using a collection of 225 colorectal cancers from 2 prospective cohort studies, we examined the relationship between NRAS mutations, clinical outcome, and other molecular features, including mutation of KRAS, BRAF, and PIK3CA, microsatellite instability, and the CpG island methylator phenotype. Finally, we examined whether NRAS mutation was associated with patient survival or prognosis. NRAS mutations were detected in 5 (2.2%) of the 225 colorectal cancers and tended to occur in left-sided cancers arising in women, but did not seem to be associated with any of the molecular features that were examined. © 2010 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Huen K.,University of California at Berkeley | Yousefi P.,University of California at Berkeley | Bradman A.,University of California at Berkeley | Yan L.,EpigenDx | And 4 more authors.
Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis | Year: 2014

Epigenetic changes such as DNA methylation may be a molecular mechanism through which environmental exposures affect health. Methylation of Alu and long interspersed nucleotide elements (LINE-1) is a well-established measure of DNA methylation often used in epidemiologic studies. Yet, few studies have examined the effects of host factors on LINE-1 and Alu methylation in children. We characterized the relationship of age, sex, and prenatal exposure to persistent organic pollutants (POPs), dichlorodiphenyl trichloroethane (DDT), dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (DDE), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), with DNA methylation in a birth cohort of Mexican-American children participating in the CHAMACOS study. We measured Alu and LINE-1 methylation by pyrosequencing bisulfite-treated DNA isolated from whole blood samples collected from newborns and nine-year old children (n=358). POPs were measured in maternal serum during late pregnancy. Levels of DNA methylation were lower in nine-year olds compared to newborns and were higher in boys compared to girls. Higher prenatal DDT/E exposure was associated with lower Alu methylation at birth, particularly after adjusting for cell type composition (P=0.02 for o,p' -DDT). Associations of POPs with LINE-1 methylation were only identified after examining the co-exposure of DDT/E with PBDEs simultaneously. Our data suggest that repeat element methylation can be an informative marker of epigenetic differences by age and sex and that prenatal exposure to POPs may be linked to hypomethylation in fetal blood. Accounting for co-exposure to different types of chemicals and adjusting for blood cell types may increase sensitivity of epigenetic analyses for epidemiological studies. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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