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Milano, Italy

Sangaletti S.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Tripodo C.,University of Palermo | Chiodoni C.,Molecular Immunology Unit | Guarnotta C.,University of Palermo | And 7 more authors.
Blood | Year: 2012

Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies (ANCAs) target proteins normally retained within neutrophils, indicating that cell death is involved in the autoimmunity process. Still, ANCA pathogenesis remains obscure. ANCAs activate neutrophils inducing their respiratory burst and a peculiar form of cell death, named NETosis, characterized by formation of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), decondensed chromatin threads decorated with cytoplasmic proteins endorsed with antimicrobial activity. NETs have been consistently detected in ANCA-associated small-vessel vasculitis, and this association prompted us to test whether the peculiar structure of NET favors neutrophil proteins uploading into myeloid dendritic cells and the induction of ANCAs and associated autoimmunity. Here we show that myeloid DCs uploaded with and activated by NET components induce ANCA and autoimmunity when injected into naive mice. DC uploading and autoimmunity induction are prevented by NET treatment with DNAse, indicating that NET structural integrity is needed to maintain the antigenicity of cytoplasmic proteins. We found NET intermingling with myeloid dendritic cells also positive for neutrophil myeloperoxidase in myeloperoxidase-ANCA-associated microscopic poliangiitis providing a potential correlative picture in human pathology. These data provide the first demonstration that NET structures are highly immunogenic such to trigger adaptive immune response relevant for autoimmunity. © 2012 by The American Society of Hematology. Source

Caccia D.,Proteomics Laboratory | Micciche F.,Proteomics Laboratory | Cassinelli G.,Molecular Pharmacology Unit | Mondellini P.,Proteomics Laboratory | And 2 more authors.
Molecular Cancer | Year: 2010

Background: TPC-1 is a papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC)-derived cell line that spontaneously expresses the oncogene RET/PTC1. TPC-1 treated with the RET/PTC1 inhibitor RPI-1 displayed a cytostatic and reversible inhibition of cell proliferation and a strong activation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK). As dasatinib inhibition of Src results in reduction of FAK activation, we evaluated the effects of TPC-1 treatment with dasatinib in combination with RPI-1.Results: Dasatinib (100 nM) strongly reduced TPC-1 proliferation and induced marked changes in TPC-1 morphology. Cells appeared smaller and more contracted, with decreased cell spreading, due to the inhibition of phosphorylation of important cytoskeletal proteins (p130CAS, Crk, and paxillin) by dasatinib. The combination of RPI-1 with dasatinib demonstrated enhanced effects on cell proliferation (more than 80% reduction) and on the phosphotyrosine protein profile. In particular, RPI-1 reduced the phosphorylation of RET, MET, DCDB2, CTND1, and PLCγ, while dasatinib acted on the phosphorylation of EGFR, EPHA2, and DOK1. Moreover, dasatinib completely abrogated the phosphorylation of FAK at all tyrosine sites (Y576, Y577, Y861, Y925) with the exception of the autoactivation site (Y397). Notably, the pharmacological treatments induced an overexpression of integrin β1 (ITB1) that was correlated with a mild enhancement in phosphorylation of ERK1/2 and STAT3, known for their roles in prevention of apoptosis and in increase of proliferation and survival. A reduction in Akt, p38 and JNK1/2 activation was observed.Conclusions: All data demonstrate that the combination of the two drugs effectively reduced cell proliferation (by more than 80%), significantly decreased Tyr phosphorylation of almost all phosphorylable proteins, and altered the morphology of the cells, supporting high cytostatic effects. Following the combined treatment, cell survival pathways appeared to be mediated by STAT3 and ERK activities resulting from integrin clustering and FAK autophosphorylation. EphA2 may also contribute, at least in part, to integrin and FAK activation. In conclusion, these data implicate ITB1 and EphA2 as promising therapeutic targets in PTC. © 2010 Caccia et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Minna E.,Molecular Mechanisms Unit | Romeo P.,Molecular Mechanisms Unit | De Cecco L.,Functional Genomics Core Facility | Dugo M.,Functional Genomics Core Facility | And 8 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2014

Thyroid cancer incidence is rapidly increasing. Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma (PTC), the most frequent hystotype, usually displays good prognosis, but no effective therapeutic options are available for the fraction of progressive PTC patients. BRAF and RET/PTC are the most frequent driving genetic lesions identified in PTC. We developed two complementary in vitro models based on RET/PTC1 oncogene, starting from the hypothesis that miRNAs modulated by a driving PTC-oncogene are likely to have a role in thyroid neoplastic processes. Through this strategy, we identified a panel of deregulated miRNAs. Among these we focused on miR-199a-3p and showed its under-expression in PTC specimens and cell lines. We demonstrated that miR-199a-3p restoration in PTC cells reduces MET and mTOR protein levels, impairs migration and proliferation and, more interesting, induces lethality through an unusual form of cell death similar to methuosis, caused by macropinocytosis dysregulation. Silencing MET or mTOR, both involved in survival pathways, does not recapitulate miR-199a-3p-induced cell lethality, thus suggesting that the cooperative regulation of multiple gene targets is necessary. Integrated analysis of miR-199a-3p targets unveils interesting networks including HGF and macropinocytosis pathways. Overall our results indicate miR-199a-3p as a tumor suppressor miRNA in PTC. Source

Zappasodi R.,Bone Marrow Transplantation Unit | Pupa S.M.,Molecular Targeting Unit | Ghedini G.C.,Molecular Targeting Unit | Bongarzone I.,Italian National Cancer Institute | And 8 more authors.
Cancer Research | Year: 2010

Increasing evidence argues that the success of an anticancer treatment may rely on immunoadjuvant side effects including the induction of immunogenic tumor cell death. Based on the assumption that this death mechanism is a similar prerequisite for the efficacy of an active immunotherapy using killed tumor cells, we examined a vaccination strategy using dendritic cells (DC) loaded with apoptotic and necrotic cell bodies derived from autologous tumors. Using this approach, clinical and immunologic responses were achieved in 6 of 18 patients with relapsed indolent non - Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). The present report illustrates an impaired ability of the neoplastic cells used to vaccinate nonresponders to undergo immunogenic death on exposure to a cell death protocol based on heat shock, γ-ray, and UVC ray. Interestingly, when compared with doxorubicin, this treatment increased surface translocation of calreticulin and cellular release of high-mobility group box 1 and ATP in histologically distinct NHL cell lines. In contrast, treated lymphoma cells from responders displayed higher amounts of calreticulin and heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) compared with those from nonresponders and boosted the production of specific antibodies when loaded into DCs for vaccination. Accordingly, the extent of calreticulin and HSP90 surface expression in the DC antigenic cargo was significantly associated with the clinical and immunologic responses achieved. Our results indicate that a positive clinical effect is obtained when immunogenically killed autologous neoplastic cells are used for the generation of a DC-based vaccine. Therapeutic improvements may thus be accomplished by circumventing the tumor-impaired ability to undergo immunogenic death and prime the antitumor immune response. ©2010 AACR. Source

Giordano A.,Temple University | Tagliabue E.,Molecular Targeting Unit | Pupa S.M.,Molecular Targeting Unit
Frontiers in Bioscience - Scholar | Year: 2012

The current molecular targets in breast cancer (BC) clinical trials were identified before the advent of the genomic era and their relevance was confirmed and validated by the introduction of gene profiling. Pioneering molecular analyses and repeated data validations on different gene platforms have thus far served to define 5 subtypes of BC based on their gene signature: luminal A, luminal B, normal-like, HER2-positive, and basal. Luminal A and B tumors are estrogen receptor (ER)-positive, while basal-like are mostly negative for ER, progesterone receptor, and HER2, i.e., triple-negative. Normal-like tumors resemble normal breast tissue and the HER2 subtype is characterized by HER2 overexpression. Here, we summarize current targeted therapeutic options for the luminal, HER2-positive, and basal-like BC subtypes with respect to results observed in clinical trials as a step toward optimizing their appropriate application in the different clinical settings. We give particular consideration to the ER- and HER2-targeted therapies approved for clinical practice with respect to their merits and shortcomings in early and advanced disease, and mention the therapeutic options currently available and potentially promising for the basal-like subtype. Source

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