Bioinformatics and Genomics Unit

Sant'Ambrogio di Torino, Italy

Bioinformatics and Genomics Unit

Sant'Ambrogio di Torino, Italy
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Colasante G.,San Raffaele Scientific Institute | Simonet J.C.,University of Pennsylvania | Calogero R.,Bioinformatics and Genomics Unit | Crispi S.,Institute Of Genetics And Byophisics A B Tcnr | And 4 more authors.
Cerebral Cortex | Year: 2015

Mutations in the Aristaless-related homeobox (ARX) gene are found in a spectrum of epilepsy and X-linked intellectual disability disorders. During development Arx is expressed in pallial ventricular zone (VZ) progenitor cells where the excitatory projection neurons of the cortex are born. Arx â '/Y mice were shown to have decreased proliferation in the cortical VZ resulting in smaller brains; however, the basis for this reduced proliferation was not established. To determine the role of ARX on cell cycle dynamics in cortical progenitor cells, we generated cerebral cortex-specific Arx mouse mutants (cKO). The loss of pallial Arx resulted in the reduction of cortical progenitor cells, particularly the proliferation of intermediate progenitor cells (IPCs) was affected. Later in development and postnatally cKO brains showed a reduction of upper layer but not deeper layer neurons consistent with the IPC defect. Transcriptional profile analysis of E14.5 Arx-ablated cortices compared with control revealed that CDKN1C, an inhibitor of cell cycle progression, is overexpressed in the cortical VZ and SVZ of Arx KOs throughout corticogenesis. We also identified ARX as a direct regulator of Cdkn1c transcription. Together these data support a model where ARX regulates the expansion of cortical progenitor cells through repression of Cdkn1c. © 2013 The Author.


Salvatori L.,CNR Institute of Neuroscience | Salvatori L.,Regina Elena Cancer Institute | Caporuscio F.,Regina Elena Cancer Institute | Caporuscio F.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 12 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

An increasing number of malignancies has been shown to be initiated and propelled by small subpopulations of cancer stem cells (CSC). However, whether tumor aggressiveness is driven by CSC and by what extent this property may be relevant within the tumor mass is still unsettled. To address this issue, we isolated a rare tumor cell population on the basis of its CD44 +CD24 - phenotype from the human androgen-independent prostate carcinoma cell line DU145 and established its CSC properties. The behavior of selected CSC was investigated with respect to the bulk DU145 cells. The injection of CSC in nude mice generated highly vascularized tumors infiltrating the adjacent tissues, showing high density of neuroendocrine cells and expressing low levels of E-cadherin and β-catenin as well as high levels of vimentin. On the contrary, when a comparable number of unsorted DU145 cells were injected the resulting tumors were less aggressive. To investigate the different features of tumors in vivo, the influence of differentiated tumor cells on CSC was examined in vitro by growing CSC in the absence or presence of conditioned medium from DU145 cells. CSC grown in permissive conditions differentiated into cell populations with features similar to those of cells held in aggressive tumors generated from CSC injection. Differently, conditioned medium induced CSC to differentiate into a cell phenotype comparable to cells of scarcely aggressive tumors originated from bulk DU145 cell injection. These findings show for the first time that CSC are able to generate differentiated cells expressing either highly or scarcely aggressive phenotype, thus influencing prostate cancer progression. The fate of CSC was determined by signals released from tumor environment. Moreover, using microarray analysis we selected some molecules which could be involved in this cell-to-cell signaling, hypothesizing their potential value for prognostic or therapeutic applications. © 2012 Salvatori et al.

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