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Nikpour M.,Karolinska Institutet | Pellagatti A.,LRF Molecular Haematology Unit | Liu A.,Karolinska Institutet | Karimi M.,Karolinska Institutet | And 9 more authors.
British Journal of Haematology | Year: 2010

Refractory anaemia with ring sideroblasts (RARS) is characterized by anaemia, erythroid apoptosis, cytochrome c release and mitochondrial ferritin accumulation. Granulocyte-colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) inhibits the first three of these features in vitro and in vivo. To dissect the molecular mechanisms underlying the RARS phenotype and anti-apoptotic effects of G-CSF, erythroblasts generated from normal (NBM) and RARS marrow CD34+ cells were cultured ±G-CSF and subjected to gene expression analysis (GEP). Several erythropoiesis-associated genes that were deregulated in RARS CD34 + cells showed normal expression in erythroblasts, underscoring the importance of differentiation-specific GEP. RARS erythroblasts showed a marked deregulation of several pathways including apoptosis, DNA damage repair, mitochondrial function and the JAK/Stat pathway. ABCB7, transporting iron from mitochondria to cytosol and associated with inherited ring sideroblast formation was severely suppressed and expression decreased with differentiation, while increasing in NBM cultures. The same pattern was observed for the mitochondrial integrity gene MFN2. Other downregulated key genes included STAT5B, HSPA5, FANCC and the negative apoptosis regulator MAP3K7. Methylation status of key downregulated genes was normal. The mitochondrial pathway including MFN2 was significantly modified by G-CSF, and several heat shock protein genes were upregulated, as evidence of anti-apoptotic protection of erythropoiesis. By contrast, G-CSF had no effect on iron-transport or erythropoiesis-associated genes. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Pellagatti A.,LRF Molecular Haematology Unit | Cazzola M.,University of Pavia | Giagounidis A.,Medizinische Klinik II | Perry J.,LRF Molecular Haematology Unit | And 9 more authors.
Leukemia | Year: 2010

To gain insight into the molecular pathogenesis of the myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), we performed global gene expression profiling and pathway analysis on the hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) of 183 MDS patients as compared with the HSC of 17 healthy controls. The most significantly deregulated pathways in MDS include interferon signaling, thrombopoietin signaling and the Wnt pathways. Among the most significantly deregulated gene pathways in early MDS are immunodeficiency, apoptosis and chemokine signaling, whereas advanced MDS is characterized by deregulation of DNA damage response and checkpoint pathways. We have identified distinct gene expression profiles and deregulated gene pathways in patients with del(5q), trisomy 8 or 7/del(7q). Patients with trisomy 8 are characterized by deregulation of pathways involved in the immune response, patients with 7/del(7q) by pathways involved in cell survival, whereas patients with del(5q) show deregulation of integrin signaling and cell cycle regulation pathways. This is the first study to determine deregulated gene pathways and ontology groups in the HSC of a large group of MDS patients. The deregulated pathways identified are likely to be critical to the MDS HSC phenotype and give new insights into the molecular pathogenesis of this disorder, thereby providing new targets for therapeutic intervention. © 2010 Macmillan Publishers Limited All rights reserved.

Ballabio E.,Brunel University | Ballabio E.,LRF Molecular Haematology Unit | Regan R.,Oxford Genetics | Garimberti E.,Brunel University | And 11 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Leukaemia is often associated with genetic alterations such as translocations, amplifications and deletions, and recurrent chromosome abnormalities are used as markers of diagnostic and prognostic relevance. However, a proportion of acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) cases have an apparently normal karyotype despite comprehensive cytogenetic analysis. Based on conventional cytogenetic analysis of banded chromosomes, we selected a series of 23 paediatric patients with acute myeloid leukaemia and performed whole genome array comparative genome hybridization (aCGH) using DNA samples derived from the same patients. Imbalances involving large chromosomal regions or entire chromosomes were detected by aCGH in seven of the patients studied. Results were validated by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) to both interphase nuclei and metaphase chromosomes using appropriate bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) probes. The majority of these copy number alterations (CNAs) were confirmed by FISH and found to localize to the interphase rather than metaphase nuclei. Furthermore, the proliferative states of the cells analyzed by FISH were tested by immunofluorescence using an antibody against the proliferation marker pKi67. Interestingly, these experiments showed that, in the vast majority of cases, the changes appeared to be confined to interphase nuclei in a non-proliferative status. © 2011 Ballabio et al.

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