Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute

Barcelona, Spain

Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute

Barcelona, Spain
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Aterido A.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Palacio C.,Hospital Universitari Vall dHebron | Marsal S.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Avila G.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Julia A.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the most frequent autoimmune chronic inflammatory disease of the joints and it is characterized by the inflammation of the synovial membrane and the subsequent destruction of the joints. In RA, CD4+ T cells are the main drivers of disease initiation and the perpetuation of the damaging inflammatory process. To date, however, the genetic regulatory mechanisms of CD4+ T cells associated with RA etiology are poorly understood. The genome-wide analysis of expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) in disease-relevant cell types is a recent genomic integration approach that is providing significant insights into the genetic regulatory mechanisms of many human pathologies. The objective of the present study was to analyze, for the first time, the genome-wide genetic regulatory mechanisms associated with the gene expression of CD4+ T cells in RA. Whole genome gene expression profiling of CD4+ T cells and the genome-wide genotyping (598,258 SNPs) of 29 RA patients with an active disease were performed. In order to avoid the excessive burden of multiple testing associated with genome-wide trans-eQTL analysis, we developed and implemented a novel systems genetics approach. Finally, we compared the genomic regulation pattern of CD4+ T cells in RA with the genomic regulation observed in reference lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs). We identified a genome-wide significant cis-eQTL associated with the expression of FAM66C gene (P = 6.51e-9). Using our new systems genetics approach we identified six statistically significant trans-eQTLs associated with the expression of KIAA0101 (P<7.4e-8) and BIRC5 (P = 5.35e-8) genes. Finally, comparing the genomic regulation profiles between RA CD4+ T cells and control LCLs we found 20 genes showing differential regulatory patterns between both cell types. The present genome-wide eQTL analysis has identified new genetic regulatory elements that are key to the activity of CD4+ T cells in RA. © 2014 Aterido et al.


Sengupta A.,Georgetown University | Mateo-Lozano S.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Tirado O.M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Notario V.,Georgetown University
International Journal of Oncology | Year: 2011

Caveolin-1 (CAV1) is highly expressed in Ewing's sarcoma (EWS). We previously showed that increased cellular CAV1 is associated with the regulation of the tumorigenicity, drug resistance and metastatic ability of EWS cells. Because several studies reported that melanoma and prostate cancer cells, which express relatively high CAV1 levels, secrete CAV1, and that secreted CAV1 is associated with tumor progression, our study explored the possibility that EWS cells also secreted CAV1 and that secreted CAV1 may contribute to EWS pathobiology. Results from experiments involving the ectopic expression of a Myc-tagged CAV1 protein in EWS cells as well as the supplementation of culture media with purified CAV1 protein followed by its intracellular localization using immunofluorescence demonstrated that EWS cells secrete CAV1, that they are able to take up the secreted protein, and that extracellular CAV1 enhances EWS cell proliferation. These findings strongly support the notion that secreted CAV1 may also contribute to the malignant properties of EWS. Copyright © 2011 Spandidos Publications Ltd. All rights reserved.


Sainz-Jaspeado M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Martin-Liberal J.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Lagares-Tena L.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Mateo-Lozano S.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | And 2 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2011

Sarcomas represent a heterogeneous group of tumors with a complex and difficult reproducible classification. Their pathogenesis is poorly understood and there are few effective treatment options for advanced disease. Caveolin-1 is a multifunctional scaffolding protein with multiple binding partners that regulates multiple cancer-associated processes including cellular transformation, tumor growth, cell death and survival, multidrug resistance, angiogenesis, cell migration and metastasis. However, ambiguous roles have been ascribed to caveolin-1 in signal transduction and cancer, including sarcomas. In particular, evidence indicating that caveolin-1 function is cell context dependent has been repeatedly reported. Caveolin-1 appears to act as a tumor suppressor protein at early stages of cancer progression. In contrast, a growing body of evidence indicates that caveolin-1 is up-regulated in several multidrug-resistant and metastatic cancer cell lines and human tumor specimens. This review is focused on the role of caveolin-1 in several soft tissue and bone sarcomas and discusses the use of this protein as a potential diagnostic and prognostic marker and as a therapeutic target. © Sáinz-Jaspeado et al.


Liberal J.M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Lagares-Tena L.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Sainz-Jaspeado M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Mateo-Lozano S.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | And 2 more authors.
Sarcoma | Year: 2012

Sarcomas are a heterogeneous group of mesenchymal malignancies that very often lead to death. Nowadays, chemotherapy is the only available treatment for most sarcomas but there are few active drugs and clinical results still remain very poor. Thus, there is an imperious need to find new therapeutic alternatives in order to improve sarcoma patient's outcome. During the last years, there have been described a number of new molecular pathways that have allowed us to know more about cancer biology and tumorigenesis. Sarcomas are one of the tumors in which more advances have been made. Identification of specific chromosomal translocations, some important pathways characterization such as mTOR pathway or the insulin-like growth factor pathway, the stunning development in angiogenesis knowledge, and brand new agents like viruses have lead to the development of new therapeutic options with promising results. This paper makes an exhaustive review of preclinical and clinical evidence of the most recent targeted therapies in sarcomas and provides a future view of treatments that may lead to improve prognosis of patients affected with this disease. Copyright © 2012 Juan Martn Liberal et al.


Sainz-Jaspeado M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Huertas-Martinez J.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Lagares-Tena L.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Martin Liberal J.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | And 6 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Angiogenesis is the result of the combined activity of the tumor microenvironment and signaling molecules. The angiogenic switch is represented as an imbalance between pro- and anti-angiogenic factors and is a rate-limiting step in the development of tumors. Eph receptor tyrosine kinases and their membrane-anchored ligands, known as ephrins, constitute the largest receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) subfamily and are considered a major family of pro-angiogenic RTKs. Ewing sarcoma (EWS) is a highly aggressive bone and soft tissue tumor affecting children and young adults. As other solid tumors, EWS are reliant on a functional vascular network for the delivery of nutrients and oxygen and for the removal of waste. Based on the biological roles of EphA2 in promoting angiogenesis, we explored the functional role of this receptor and its relationship with caveolin-1 (CAV1) in EWS angiogenesis. We demonstrated that lack of CAV1 results in a significant reduction in micro vascular density (MVD) on 3 different in vivo models. In vitro, this phenomenon correlated with inactivation of EphA2 receptor, lack of AKT response and downregulation of bFGF. We also demonstrated that secreted bFGF from EWS cells acted as chemoattractant for endothelial cells. Furthermore, interaction between EphA2 and CAV1 was necessary for the right localization and signaling of the receptor to produce bFGF through AKT and promote migration of endothelial cells. Finally, introduction of a dominant-negative form of EphA2 into EWS cells mostly reproduced the effects occurred by CAV1 silencing, strongly suggesting that the axis EphA2-CAV1 participates in the promotion of endothelial cell migration toward the tumors favoring EWS angiogenesis. © 2013 Sáinz-Jaspeado et al.


Alonso A.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Alonso A.,University of Barcelona | Rodriguez M.A.,Center for Omic science | Rodriguez M.A.,CIBER ISCIII | And 7 more authors.
Analytical Chemistry | Year: 2014

One-dimensional 1H NMR represents one of the most commonly used analytical techniques in metabolomic studies. The increase in the number of samples analyzed as well as the technical improvements involving instrumentation and spectral acquisition demand increasingly accurate and efficient high-throughput data processing workflows. We present FOCUS, an integrated and innovative methodology that provides a complete data analysis workflow for one-dimensional NMR-based metabolomics. This tool will allow users to easily obtain a NMR peak feature matrix ready for chemometric analysis as well as metabolite identification scores for each peak that greatly simplify the biological interpretation of the results. The algorithm development has been focused on solving the critical difficulties that appear at each data processing step and that can dramatically affect the quality of the results. As well as method integration, simplicity has been one of the main objectives in FOCUS development, requiring very little user input to perform accurate peak alignment, peak picking, and metabolite identification. The new spectral alignment algorithm, RUNAS, allows peak alignment with no need of a reference spectrum, and therefore, it reduces the bias introduced by other alignment approaches. Spectral alignment has been tested against previous methodologies obtaining substantial improvements in the case of moderate or highly unaligned spectra. Metabolite identification has also been significantly improved, using the positional and correlation peak patterns in contrast to a reference metabolite panel. Furthermore, the complete workflow has been tested using NMR data sets from 60 human urine samples and 120 aqueous liver extracts, reaching a successful identification of 42 metabolites from the two data sets. The open-source software implementation of this methodology is available at http://www.urr.cat/FOCUS. © 2013 American Chemical Society.


Tirado O.M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | MacCarthy C.M.,Georgetown University | Fatima N.,Georgetown University | Villar J.,Georgetown University | And 3 more authors.
International Journal of Cancer | Year: 2010

Caveolin-1 (CAV1) has been implicated in the regulation of several signaling pathways and in oncogenesis. Previously, we identified CAV1 as a key determinant of the oncogenic phenotype and tumorigenic activity of cells from tumors of the Ewing's Sarcoma Family (ESFT). However, the possible CAV1 involvement in the chemotherapy resistance commonly presented by an ESFT subset has not been established to date. This report shows that CAV1 expression determines the sensitivity of ESFT cells to clinically relevant chemotherapeutic agents. Analyses of endogenous CAV1 levels in several ESFT cells and ectopic CAV1 expression into ESFT cells expressing low endogenous CAV1 showed that the higher the CAV1 levels, the greater their resistance to drug treatment. Moreover, results from antisense- and shRNA-mediated gene expression knockdown and protein re-expression experiments demonstrated that CAV1 increases the resistance of ESFT cells to doxorubicin (Dox)- and cisplatin (Cp)-induced apoptosis by a mechanism involving the activating phosphorylation of PKCα. CAV1 knockdown in ESFT cells led to decreased phospho(Thr638)- PKCα levels and a concomitant sensitization to apoptosis, which were reversed by CAV1 re-expression. These results were recapitulated by PKCα knockdown and re-expression in ESFT cells in which CAV1 was previously knocked down, thus demonstrating that phospho(Thr638)-PKCα acts downstream of CAV1 to determine the sensitivity of ESFT cells to chemotherapeutic drugs. These data, along with the finding that CAV1 and phospho(Thr638)-PKCα are co-expressed in ∼45% of ESFT specimens tested, imply that targeting CAV1 and/or PKCα may allow the development of new molecular therapeutic strategies to improve the treatment outcome for patients with ESFT. © 2009 UICC.


Sainz-Jaspeado M.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Lagares-Tena L.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Lasheras J.,Lhospitalet Of Llobregat | Lasheras J.,Institute Of Recerca Of Lhospital Universitari Of La Vall Dhebron | And 8 more authors.
Molecular Cancer Research | Year: 2010

Metastasis is the final stage of tumor progression and is thought to be responsible for up to 90% of deaths associated with solid tumors. Caveolin-1 (CAV1) regulates multiple cancer-associated processes related to malignant tumor progression. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that CAV1 modulates the metastatic ability of cells from the Ewing's sarcoma family of tumors (ESFT). First, we analyzed the expression of CAV1 by immunostaining a tissue microarray containing 43 paraffin-embedded ESFT tumors with known EWS translocations. Even though no evidence was found for a significant association between CAV1 expression and stage, size or tumor site, all metastatic samples (10 of 10) had significantly high CAV1 expression, suggesting that high CAV1 content could positively contribute to enhance ESFT metastasis. To determine the effect of CAV1 on the migratory and invasive capabilities of ESFT cells, we knocked down CAV1 expression in TC252 and A673 cells by stably transfecting a previously validated shRNA construct. In vitro, migration and invasion assays showed that for both cell lines, CAV1 knocked-down cells migrated and invaded significantly less (P ≤ 0.01) than control cells. Moreover, control A673 cells introduced into BALB/c nude mice by tail vein injection strongly colonized the lungs. In contrast, animals injected with CAV1 knocked-down cells showed either no incidence of metastasis or developed lung metastases after a significant delay (P < 0.0001). Finally, we show that the molecular mechanisms by which CAV1 carries out its key role in regulating ESFT metastasis involve matrix metalloproteinase production and activation as well as the control of the expression of SPARC, a known determinant of lung colonization. ©2010 AACR.


Alonso A.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Alonso A.,University of Barcelona | Marsal S.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | Tortosa R.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

We present GStream, a method that combines genome-wide SNP and CNV genotyping in the Illumina microarray platform with unprecedented accuracy. This new method outperforms previous well-established SNP genotyping software. More importantly, the CNV calling algorithm of GStream dramatically improves the results obtained by previous state-of-the-art methods and yields an accuracy that is close to that obtained by purely CNV-oriented technologies like Comparative Genomic Hybridization (CGH). We demonstrate the superior performance of GStream using microarray data generated from HapMap samples. Using the reference CNV calls generated by the 1000 Genomes Project (1KGP) and well-known studies on whole genome CNV characterization based either on CGH or genotyping microarray technologies, we show that GStream can increase the number of reliably detected variants up to 25% compared to previously developed methods. Furthermore, the increased genome coverage provided by GStream allows the discovery of CNVs in close linkage disequilibrium with SNPs, previously associated with disease risk in published Genome-Wide Association Studies (GWAS). These results could provide important insights into the biological mechanism underlying the detected disease risk association. With GStream, large-scale GWAS will not only benefit from the combined genotyping of SNPs and CNVs at an unprecedented accuracy, but will also take advantage of the computational efficiency of the method. © 2013 Alonso et al.


Julia A.,Vall dHebron Hospital Research Institute
Pharmacogenomics Journal | Year: 2015

Anti-Tumor Necrosis Factor (anti-TNF) drugs are biologic agents commonly used to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA). However, anti-TNFs are not effective in approximately one out of four treated patients. We conducted a Genome-Wide Association Study (GWAS) to identify the genetic variation associated with the response to anti-TNF therapy in RA. In the discovery stage, 372 RA patients treated with an anti-TNF agent (infliximab, adalimumab or etanercept) were analyzed and treatment response was defined at 12 weeks of therapy. We found a genome-wide significant association in the MED15 gene with the response to etanercept (P<1.5e-8). Using an independent cohort of 245 RA patients, we performed a replication study of the most significant GWAS associations. We replicated the association at the MED15 locus and found suggestive evidence of association in the previously associated MAFB locus. The results of this study suggest novel mechanisms associated with the response to anti-TNF therapies.The Pharmacogenomics Journal advance online publication, 21 April 2015; doi:10.1038/tpj.2015.31. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited

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