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Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

Monk D.,Imprinting and Cancer Group
Briefings in Functional Genomics and Proteomics | Year: 2010

Genetic events alone cannot explain the entire process of carcinogenesis. It is estimated that there are more epigenetic alterations in cancer than DNA mutations, and disiphering driver and secondary events is essential to understand early processes of tumorigenesis. Epigenetic modifications control gene activity, governing whether a gene is transcribed or silent. In cancer, global patterns of two epigenetic marks, histone modifications and DNA methylation, are known to be extensively deregulated. Tumour cells are also characterized by loss-of-imprinting, a key epigenetic developmental mechanism. Genomic imprinting is the parent-of-origin, monoallelic expression of genes and is controlled by differentially DNA-methylated regions and allelic-histone modifications. With specific emphasis on imprinted loci this review will discuss alterations in DNA methylation and histone modifications in cancer. The recent advances in technology that might facilitate the identification and characterization of the epigenetic profiles of cancer will also be described. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. Source

Iglesias-Platas I.,Servicio de Neonatologia | Martin-Trujillo A.,Imprinting and Cancer Group | Petazzi P.,Institute Dinvestigacio Biomedica Of Bellvitge | Guillaumet-Adkins A.,Servicio de Neonatologia | And 4 more authors.
Human molecular genetics | Year: 2014

Genomic imprinting is the epigenetic process that results in monoallelic expression of genes depending on parental origin. These genes are known to be critical for placental development and fetal growth in mammals. Aberrant epigenetic profiles at imprinted loci, such as DNA methylation defects, are surprisingly rare in pregnancies with compromised fetal growth, while variations in transcriptional output from the expressed alleles of imprinted genes are more commonly reported in pregnancies complicated with intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). To determine if PLAGL1 and HYMAI, two imprinted transcripts deregulated in Transient Neonatal Diabetes Mellitus, are involved in non-syndromic IUGR we compared the expression and DNA methylation levels in a large cohort of placental biopsies from IUGR and uneventful pregnancies. This revealed that despite appropriate maternal methylation at the shared PLAGL1/HYMAI promoter, there was a loss of correlation between PLAGL1 and HYMAI expression in IUGR. This incongruity was due to higher HYMAI expression in IUGR gestations, coupled with PLAGL1 down-regulation in placentas from IUGR girls, but not boys. The PLAGL1 protein is a zinc-finger transcription factor that has been shown to be a master coordinator of a genetic growth network in mice. We observe PLAGL1 binding to the H19/IGF2 shared enhancers in placentae, with significant correlations between PLAGL1 levels with H19 and IGF2 expression levels. In addition, PLAGL1 binding and expression also correlate with expression levels of metabolic regulator genes SLC2A4, TCF4 and PPARγ1. Our results strongly suggest that fetal growth can be influenced by altered expression of the PLAGL1 gene network in human placenta. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com. Source

Guillaumet-Adkins A.,Imprinting and Cancer Group | Richter J.,University of Kiel | Odero M.D.,University of Navarra | Sandoval J.,Cancer Epigenetics Group | And 12 more authors.
Journal of Hematology and Oncology | Year: 2014

Background: Wilms tumor 1 (WT1) is over-expressed in numerous cancers with respect to normal cells, and has either a tumor suppressor or oncogenic role depending on cellular context. This gene is associated with numerous alternatively spliced transcripts, which initiate from two different unique first exons within the WT1 and the alternative (A)WT1 promoter intervals. Within the hematological system, WT1 expression is restricted to CD34+/CD38- cells and is undetectable after differentiation. Detectable expression of this gene is an excellent marker for minimal residual disease in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), but the underlying epigenetic alterations are unknown. Methods. To determine the changes in the underlying epigenetic landscape responsible for this expression, we characterized expression, DNA methylation and histone modification profiles in 28 hematological cancer cell lines and confirmed the methylation signature in 356 cytogenetically well-characterized primary hematological malignancies. Results: Despite high expression of WT1 and AWT1 transcripts in AML-derived cell lines, we observe robust hypermethylation of the AWT1 promoter and an epigenetic switch from a permissive to repressive chromatin structure between normal cells and AML cell lines. Subsequent methylation analysis in our primary leukemia and lymphoma cohort revealed that the epigenetic signature identified in cell lines is specific to myeloid-lineage malignancies, irrespective of underlying mutational status or translocation. In addition to being a highly specific marker for AML diagnosis (positive predictive value 100%; sensitivity 86.1%; negative predictive value 89.4%), we show that AWT1 hypermethylation also discriminates patients that relapse from those achieving complete remission after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, with similar efficiency to WT1 expression profiling. Conclusions: We describe a methylation signature of the AWT1 promoter CpG island that is a promising marker for classifying myeloid-derived leukemias. In addition AWT1 hypermethylation is ideally suited to monitor the recurrence of disease during remission in patients undergoing allogeneic stem cell transfer. © 2014 nGuillaumet-Adkins et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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