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Singh K.P.,University of Rochester | Bennett J.A.,University of Rochester | Casado F.L.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Walrath J.L.,University of Rochester | And 2 more authors.
Stem Cells and Development | Year: 2014

Loss of immune function and increased hematopoietic disease are among the most clinically significant consequences of aging. Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) from mice lacking aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) have high rates of cell division. Studies were designed to test the hypothesis that aging AhR-null allele (AhR-KO) mice develop premature HSC exhaustion, and changes leading to hematological disease. Compared to wild-type, aging AhR-KO mice showed a decreased survival rate, splenomegaly, increased circulating white blood cells, hematopoietic cell accumulation in tissues, and anemia. Analysis of bone marrow indicated increased numbers of stem/progenitor and lineage-committed cells, but decreased erythroid progenitors. There was also decreased self-renewal capacity of HSCs determined by competitive repopulation and serial transplantation. HSCs also showed increased levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), Ki-67, and γ-H2A.X, but decreased p16Ink4a. Splenic cells from aging KO mice had abnormal expression of genes, including Gata-1, Sh2d3c, Gfi-1, p21, and c-myc, involved in trafficking and associated with leukemia. HSCs from AhR-KO mice had gene changes related to HSC maintenance and consistent with phenotype observed. The most prominent gene changes (overexpression of Srpk2, Creb1, Hes1, mtor, pdp1) have been associated with HSC hyperproliferation, leukemia, and accelerated aging. Pathway analyses also indicated an enrichment of genes associated with oxidative stress, acute myelogenous leukemia, aging, and heat shock response, and the β-catenin/Wnt pathways. These data indicate that loss of AhR and associated changes in multiple signaling pathways promote premature HSC exhaustion and development of a myeloproliferative disorder. They also implicate a critical role of the AhR in the regulation of HSCs. © 2014, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.


Zarkoob H.,University of Waterloo | Taube J.H.,University of Houston | Singh S.K.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Singh S.K.,McMaster University | And 3 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

In this manuscript, we use genetic data to provide a three-faceted analysis on the links between molecular subclasses of glioblastoma, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and CD133 cell surface protein. The contribution of this paper is three-fold: First, we use a newly identified signature for epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition in human mammary epithelial cells, and demonstrate that genes in this signature have significant overlap with genes differentially expressed in all known GBM subtypes. However, the overlap between genes up regulated in the mesenchymal subtype of GBM and in the EMT signature was more significant than other GBM subtypes. Second, we provide evidence that there is a negative correlation between the genetic signature of EMT and that of CD133 cell surface protein, a putative marker for neural stem cells. Third, we study the correlation between GBM molecular subtypes and the genetic signature of CD133 cell surface protein. We demonstrate that the mesenchymal and neural subtypes of GBM have the strongest correlations with the CD133 genetic signature. While the mesenchymal subtype of GBM displays similarity with the signatures of both EMT and CD133, it also exhibits some differences with each of these signatures that are partly due to the fact that the signatures of EMT and CD133 are inversely related to each other. Taken together these data shed light on the role of the mesenchymal transition and neural stem cells, and their mutual interaction, in molecular subtypes of glioblastoma multiforme. © 2013 Zarkoob et al.


Ralston A.,Hospital for Sick Children Research Institute | Ralston A.,University of California at Santa Cruz | Cox B.J.,Hospital for Sick Children Research Institute | Nishioka N.,RIKEN | And 9 more authors.
Development | Year: 2010

The mouse blastocyst and stem cells derived from its tissue lineages provide a unique genetic system for examining the establishment and loss of pluripotency. The transcription factor Cdx2 plays a central role by repressing pluripotency genes, such as Oct4, and promoting extraembryonic trophoblast fate at the blastocyst stage. However, genetic evidence has suggested that Cdx2 does not work alone in the trophoblast lineage. We have used bioinformatic and functional genomic strategies to identify the transcription factor Gata3 as a trophoblast factor. We show Gata3 to be capable of inducing trophoblast fate in embryonic stem cells and driving trophoblast differentiation in trophoblast stem cells. In addition, Cdx2 is not required for Gata3-induced expression of a subset of trophoblast genes in embryonic stem cells. We show that Gata3 is coexpressed with Cdx2 in the blastocyst, but this does not depend on Cdx2. In the embryo, expression of Gata3, like that of Cdx2, depends on Tead4, and the expression of both factors becomes restricted to trophoblast by a mechanism that does not initially rely on Oct4. These observations suggest that Gata3 and Cdx2 can act in parallel pathways downstream of Tead4 to induce the expression of common and independent targets in the trophoblast lineage, whereas Oct4 is required for continued repression of trophoblast fate in the embryonic lineage. © 2010. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.


McIntyre B.A.S.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Kushwah R.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Mechael R.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Mechael R.,McMaster University | And 3 more authors.
Innate Immunity | Year: 2015

The acquisition of innate immune response is requisite to having bona fide differentiation of airway epithelium. Procedures developed to differentiate lung airway from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) have demonstrated anecdotal evidence for innate immune response, but an in-depth exploration of response levels is lacking. Herein, using an established method of airway epithelial generation from hPSCs, we show that hPSC-derived epithelial cells are able to up-regulate expression of TNFα, IL8 and IL1β in response to challenge with bacterial endotoxin LPS, but lack response from genes associated with innate immune response in other cell types. Further, stimulation of cells with TNF-α resulted in auto-induction of TNFα transcript, as well as cytokine responses of IL8 and IL1β. The demonstration of innate immune induction in hPSC-derived airway epithelia gives further strength to the functionality of in vitro protocols aimed at generating differentiated airway cells that can potentially be used in a translational setting. Finally, we propose that innate immune challenge of airway epithelium from human pluripotent stem cell sources be used as a robust validation of functional in vitro differentiation. © The Author(s) 2014 Reprints and permissions: sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav.


Venugopal C.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Li N.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Wang X.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | Manoranjan B.,McMaster Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute | And 11 more authors.
Stem Cell Research | Year: 2012

The master regulatory gene Bmi1 modulates key stem cell properties in neural precursor cells (NPCs), and has been implicated in brain tumorigenesis. We previously identified a population of CD133 + brain tumor cells possessing stem cell properties, known as brain tumor initiating cells (BTICs). Here, we characterize the expression and role of Bmi1 in primary minimally cultured human glioblastoma (GBM) patient isolates in CD133 + and CD133 - sorted populations. We find that Bmi1 expression is increased in CD133 - cells, and Bmi1 protein and transcript expression are highest during intermediate stages of differentiation as CD133 + BTICs lose their CD133 expression. Furthermore, in vitro stem cell assays and Bmi1 knockdown show that Bmi1 contributes to self-renewal in CD133 + populations, but regulates proliferation and cell fate determination in CD133 - populations. Finally, we test if our in vitro stem cell assays and Bmi1 expression in BTIC patient isolates are predictive of clinical outcome for GBM patients. Bmi1 expression profiles show a marked elevation in the proneural GBM subtype, and stem cell frequency as assessed by tumor sphere assays correlates with patient outcome. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

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