Gene Summary

Gene:PDGFA; platelet derived growth factor subunit A
Aliases: PDGF1, PDGF-A
Summary:This gene encodes a member of the protein family comprised of both platelet-derived growth factors (PDGF) and vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGF). The encoded preproprotein is proteolytically processed to generate platelet-derived growth factor subunit A, which can homodimerize, or alternatively, heterodimerize with the related platelet-derived growth factor subunit B. These proteins bind and activate PDGF receptor tyrosine kinases, which play a role in a wide range of developmental processes. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants. [provided by RefSeq, Oct 2015]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:platelet-derived growth factor subunit A
Source:NCBIAccessed: 15 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 15 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

Tag cloud generated 15 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: PDGFA (cancer-related)

Sakakini N, Turchi L, Bergon A, et al.
A Positive Feed-forward Loop Associating EGR1 and PDGFA Promotes Proliferation and Self-renewal in Glioblastoma Stem Cells.
J Biol Chem. 2016; 291(20):10684-99 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Glioblastomas are the most common primary brain tumors, highly vascularized, infiltrating, and resistant to current therapies. This cancer leads to a fatal outcome in less than 18 months. The aggressive behavior of glioblastomas, including resistance to current treatments and tumor recurrence, has been attributed to glioma stemlike/progenitor cells. The transcription factor EGR1 (early growth response 1), a member of a zinc finger transcription factor family, has been described as tumor suppressor in gliomas when ectopically overexpressed. Although EGR1 expression in human glioblastomas has been associated with patient survival, its precise location in tumor territories as well as its contribution to glioblastoma progression remain elusive. In the present study, we show that EGR1-expressing cells are more frequent in high grade gliomas where the nuclear expression of EGR1 is restricted to proliferating/progenitor cells. We show in primary cultures of glioma stemlike cells that EGR1 contributes to stemness marker expression and proliferation by orchestrating a PDGFA-dependent growth-stimulatory loop. In addition, we demonstrate that EGR1 acts as a positive regulator of several important genes, including SHH, GLI1, GLI2, and PDGFA, previously linked to the maintenance and proliferation of glioma stemlike cells.

Halberg N, Sengelaub CA, Navrazhina K, et al.
PITPNC1 Recruits RAB1B to the Golgi Network to Drive Malignant Secretion.
Cancer Cell. 2016; 29(3):339-53 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Enhanced secretion of tumorigenic effector proteins is a feature of malignant cells. The molecular mechanisms underlying this feature are poorly defined. We identify PITPNC1 as a gene amplified in a large fraction of human breast cancer and overexpressed in metastatic breast, melanoma, and colon cancers. Biochemical, molecular, and cell-biological studies reveal that PITPNC1 promotes malignant secretion by binding Golgi-resident PI4P and localizing RAB1B to the Golgi. RAB1B localization to the Golgi allows for the recruitment of GOLPH3, which facilitates Golgi extension and enhanced vesicular release. PITPNC1-mediated vesicular release drives metastasis by increasing the secretion of pro-invasive and pro-angiogenic mediators HTRA1, MMP1, FAM3C, PDGFA, and ADAM10. We establish PITPNC1 as a PI4P-binding protein that enhances vesicular secretion capacity in malignancy.

da Silva-Diz V, Simón-Extremera P, Bernat-Peguera A, et al.
Cancer Stem-like Cells Act via Distinct Signaling Pathways in Promoting Late Stages of Malignant Progression.
Cancer Res. 2016; 76(5):1245-59 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer stem-like cells (CSC) play key roles in long-term tumor propagation and metastasis, but their dynamics during disease progression are not understood. Tumor relapse in patients with initially excised skin squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) is characterized by increased metastatic potential, and SCC progression is associated with an expansion of CSC. Here, we used genetically and chemically-induced mouse models of skin SCC to investigate the signaling pathways contributing to CSC function during disease progression. We found that CSC regulatory mechanisms change in advanced SCC, correlating with aggressive tumor growth and enhanced metastasis. β-Catenin and EGFR signaling, induced in early SCC CSC, were downregulated in advanced SCC. Instead, autocrine FGFR1 and PDGFRα signaling, which have not been previously associated with skin SCC CSC, were upregulated in late CSC and promoted tumor growth and metastasis, respectively. Finally, high-grade and recurrent human skin SCC recapitulated the signaling changes observed in advanced mouse SCC. Collectively, our findings suggest a stage-specific switch in CSC regulation during disease progression that could be therapeutically exploited by targeting the PDGFR and FGFR1 pathways to block relapse and metastasis of advanced human skin SCC.

Hussein K, Stucki-Koch A, Alchalby H, et al.
Cytokine Expression Pattern in Bone Marrow Microenvironment after Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation in Primary Myelofibrosis.
Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2016; 22(4):644-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
The only curative therapy for primary myelofibrosis (PMF) is allogeneic stem cell transplantation (ASCT). However, although we know that patients can benefit from ASCT, we do not know the extent of the changes of the expression profile of cytokines and matrix modulation factors. In this first systematic analysis, we evaluated the expression profile of 103 factors before and after transplantation to identify potential biomarkers. The expression of fibrosis-, inflammation-, and angiogenesis-associated genes was analyzed in a total of 52 bone marrow biopsies: PMF patients (n = 14) before and after ASCT and, for control purposes, post-ASCT multiple myeloma patients (n = 14) and non-neoplastic hematopoiesis (n = 10). In post-ASCT PMF cases, decreased expression of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases (TIMP) and platelet-derived growth factor alpha (PDGFA) correlated with bone marrow remodeling and hematological remission. Expression of several other matrix factors remained at high levels and may contribute to post-ASCT remodeling. This is the first systematic analysis of cytokine expression in post-ASCT PMF bone marrow that shows that normalization of bone marrow microenvironment is paralleled by decreased expression of TIMP and PDGFA.

Giachino C, Boulay JL, Ivanek R, et al.
A Tumor Suppressor Function for Notch Signaling in Forebrain Tumor Subtypes.
Cancer Cell. 2015; 28(6):730-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
In the brain, Notch signaling maintains normal neural stem cells, but also brain cancer stem cells, indicating an oncogenic role. Here, we identify an unexpected tumor suppressor function for Notch in forebrain tumor subtypes. Genetic inactivation of RBP-Jκ, a key Notch mediator, or Notch1 and Notch2 receptors accelerates PDGF-driven glioma growth in mice. Conversely, genetic activation of the Notch pathway reduces glioma growth and increases survival. In humans, high Notch activity strongly correlates with distinct glioma subtypes, increased patient survival, and lower tumor grade. Additionally, simultaneous inactivation of RBP-Jκ and p53 induces primitive neuroectodermal-like tumors in mice. Hence, Notch signaling cooperates with p53 to restrict cell proliferation and tumor growth in mouse models of human brain tumors.

Nakajima Y, Osakabe A, Waku T, et al.
Estrogen Exhibits a Biphasic Effect on Prostate Tumor Growth through the Estrogen Receptor β-KLF5 Pathway.
Mol Cell Biol. 2016; 36(1):144-56 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Estrogens are effective in the treatment of prostate cancer; however, the effects of estrogens on prostate cancer are enigmatic. In this study, we demonstrated that estrogen (17β-estradiol [E2]) has biphasic effects on prostate tumor growth. A lower dose of E2 increased tumor growth in mouse xenograft models using DU145 and PC-3 human prostate cancer cells, whereas a higher dose significantly decreased tumor growth. We found that anchorage-independent apoptosis in these cells was inhibited by E2 treatment. Similarly, in vivo angiogenesis was suppressed by E2. Interestingly, these effects of E2 were abolished by knockdown of either estrogen receptor β (ERβ) or Krüppel-like zinc finger transcription factor 5 (KLF5). Ιn addition, E2 suppressed KLF5-mediated transcription through ERβ, which inhibits proapoptotic FOXO1 and proangiogenic PDGFA expression. Furthermore, we revealed that a nonagonistic ER ligand GS-1405 inhibited FOXO1 and PDGFA expression through the ERβ-KLF5 pathway and regulated prostate tumor growth without ERβ transactivation. Therefore, these results suggest that E2 biphasically modulates prostate tumor formation by regulating KLF5-dependent transcription through ERβ and provide a new strategy for designing ER modulators, which will be able to regulate prostate cancer progression with minimal adverse effects due to ER transactivation.

Chung S, Dwabe S, Elshimali Y, et al.
Identification of Novel Biomarkers for Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Using Angiogenesis-Antibody Array and Intracellular Signaling Array.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(8):e0134948 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the three leading causes for cancer mortality. CRC kills over 600,000 people annually worldwide. The most common cause of death from CRC is the metastasis to distant organs. However, biomarkers for CRC metastasis remain ill-defined. We compared primary and metastatic CRC cell lines for their angiogenesis-protein profiles and intracellular signaling profiles to identify novel biomarkers for CRC metastasis. To this end, we used primary and metastatic CRC cell lines as a model system and normal human colon cell line as a control. The angiogenesis profiles two isogenic CRC cell lines, SW480 and SW620, and HT-29 and T84 revealed that VEGF was upregulated in both SW620 and T84 whereas coagulation factor III, IGFBP-3, DPP IV, PDGF AA/AB, endothelin I and CXCL16 were downregulated specifically in metastatic cell lines. Furthermore, we found that TIMP-1, amphiregulin, endostatin, angiogenin were upregulated in SW620 whereas downregulated in T84. Angiogenin was downregulated in T84 and GM-CSF was also downregulated in SW620. To induce CRC cell metastasis, we treated cells with pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-6. Upon IL-6 treatment, epithelial-mesenchymal transition was induced in CRC cells. When DLD-1 and HT-29 cells were treated with IL-6; Akt, STAT3, AMPKα and Bad phosphorylation levels were increased. Interestingly, SW620 showed the same signal activation pattern with IL-6 treatment of HT-29 and DLD-1. Our data suggest that Akt, STAT3, AMPKα and Bad activation can be biomarkers for metastatic colorectal cancer. IL-6 treatment specifically reduced phosphorylation levels of EGFR, HER2 receptor, Insulin R and IGF-1R in receptor tyrosine kinase array study with HT-29. Taken together, we have identified novel biomarkers for metastatic CRC through the angiogenesis-antibody array and intracellular signaling array studies. Present study suggests that those novel biomarkers can be used as CRC prognosis biomarkers, and as potential targets for the metastatic CRC therapy.

Ferrándiz-Pulido C, Hernández-Losa J, Masferrer E, et al.
Identification of somatic gene mutations in penile squamous cell carcinoma.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2015; 54(10):629-37 [PubMed] Related Publications
There is a lack of studies on somatic gene mutations and cell signaling driving penile carcinogenesis. Our objective was to analyze somatic mutations in genes downstream of EGFR in penile squamous cell carcinomas, especially the mTOR and RAS/MAPK pathways. We retrospectively analyzed somatic mutations in 10 in situ and 65 invasive penile squamous cell carcinomas by using Sequenom's Mass Spectrometry iPlex Technology and Oncocarta v1.0 Panel. The DNA was extracted from FFPE blocks and we identified somatic missense mutations in three in situ tumors and in 19 invasive tumors, mostly in PIK3CA, KRAS, HRAS, NRAS, and PDGFA genes. Somatic mutations in the PIK3CA gene or RAS family genes were neither associated with tumor grade, stage or outcome, and were equally often identified in hrHPV positive and in hrHPV negative tumors that showed no p53 expression. Mutations in PIK3CA, KRAS, and HRAS are frequent in penile squamous cell carcinoma and likely play a role in the development of p53-negative tumors. Although the presence of these mutations does not seem to correlate with tumoral behavior or outcome, they could be biomarkers of treatment failure with anti-EGFR mAb in patients with penile squamous cell carcinoma.

Chen Y, Wang Z, Dai X, et al.
Glioma initiating cells contribute to malignant transformation of host glial cells during tumor tissue remodeling via PDGF signaling.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 365(2):174-81 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Glioma initiating cells (GICs) play important roles in tumor initiation and progression. However, interactions between tumor cells and host cells of local tumor microenvironment are kept largely unknown. Besides GICs and their progeny cells, whether adjacent normal glial cells contribute to tumorigenesis during glioma tissue remodeling deserves further investigation.
METHODS: Red fluorescence protein (RFP) gene was stably transfected into human GIC cells lines SU3 and U87, then were transplanted intracerebrally into athymic nude mice with whole-body green fluorescence protein (GFP) expression. The interactions between GICs and host cells in vivo were observed during tissue remodeling processes initiated by hGICs. The biological characteristics of host glial cells with high proliferation capability cloned from the xenograft were further assayed.
RESULTS: In a SU3 initiated dual-fluorescence xenograft glioma model, part of host cells cloned from the intracerebral tumors were found acquiring the capability of unlimited proliferation. PCR and FISH results indicated that malignant transformed cells were derived from host cells; cell surface marker analysis showed these cells expressed murine oligodendrocyte specific marker CNP, and oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) specific markers PDGFR-α and NG2. Chromosomal analysis showed these cells were super tetraploid. In vivo studies showed they behaved with high invasiveness activity and nearly 100% tumorigenic ratio. Compared with SU3 cells with higher PDGF-B expression, GICs derived from U87 cells with low level of PDGF-B expression failed to induce host cell transformation.
CONCLUSIONS: Primary high invasive GICs SU3 contribute to transformation of adjacent normal host glial cells in local tumor microenvironment possibly via PDGF/PDGFR signaling activation, which deserved further investigation.

Tajima S, Takanashi Y, Takahashi T, Neyatani H
Intimal sarcoma of the abdominal aorta with platelet-derived growth factor receptor α overexpression and amplification in mural invasive cells and pulmonary metastatic cells but not in intimal spreading cells.
Pathol Int. 2015; 65(8):426-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
Intimal sarcoma (IS) is the most common sarcoma of the aorta. The platelet-derived growth factor receptor α (PDGFRA), murine double minute 2 (MDM2), and cyclin-dependent kinase 4 (CDK4) genes are often simultaneously amplified in IS. While immunohistochemical analysis of IS tissue has demonstrated frequent overexpression of the MDM2 and CDK4 proteins, the expression pattern of PDGFRA has not been well characterized, particularly in terms of intratumoral heterogeneity. Here, we present the case of a 46-year-old man who presented with a backache and was subsequently diagnosed with IS. Intratumoral heterogeneity of PDGFRA gene amplification was observed using fluorescence in situ hybridization and was positively correlated with PDGFRA protein expression using immunohistochemistry (IHC). The expression of PDGFRA was also correlated with cytological atypia: PDGFRA was not overexpressed in intimal spreading cells that displayed the lowest degree of atypia while PDGFRA overexpression and amplification were observed in invasive cells of progressive areas such as the aortic wall and a pulmonary metastatic site, which showed increased cytological atypia. Although PDGFRA has not been well examined on IHC, IHC of PDGFRA could be useful to diagnose IS. However, the areas within the tumor from which specimens are derived are important given potential intratumoral heterogeneity.

Luengo-Gil G, González-Billalabeitia E, Chaves-Benito A, et al.
Effects of conventional neoadjuvant chemotherapy for breast cancer on tumor angiogenesis.
Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2015; 151(3):577-87 [PubMed] Related Publications
The effects of breast cancer conventional chemotherapy on tumor angiogenesis need to be further characterized. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is an ideal model to evaluate the results of chemotherapy, allowing intra-patient direct comparison of antitumor and antiangiogenic effects. We sought to analyze the effect of neoadjuvant chemotherapy on tumor angiogenesis and its clinical significance in breast cancer. Breast cancer patients (n = 108) treated with neoadjuvant sequential anthracyclines and taxanes were studied. Pre- and post-chemotherapy microvessel density (MVD) and mean vessel size (MVS) were analyzed after CD34 immunohistochemistry and correlated with tumor expression of pro- and antiangiogenic factors (VEGFA, THBS1, HIF1A, CTGF, and PDGFA) by qRT-PCR. Angiogenic measures at diagnosis varied among breast cancer subtypes. Pre-treatment higher MVS was associated with triple-negative subtype and more advanced disease. Higher MVS was correlated with higher VEGFA (p = 0.003), while higher MVD was correlated with lower antiangiogenic factors expression (THBS1, p < 0.0001; CTGF, p = 0.001). Increased angiogenesis at diagnosis (high MVS and glomeruloid microvascular proliferation) and higher VEGFA expression were associated with tumor recurrence (p = 0.048 and 0.009, respectively). Chemotherapy-induced angiogenic response (defined as decreased MVD) was present in 35.2 % of patients. This response correlated with an increase in antiangiogenic factors (THBS1) without changes in VEGFA expression, and it was associated with tumor downstaging, but not with clinical response, pathologic complete response, or prognosis. Global effects of chemotherapy mainly consisted in an increased expression of antiangiogenic factors (THBS1, CTGF), with significant changes neither of tumor VEGFA nor of MVS. Conventionally scheduled neoadjuvant chemotherapy exerts antiangiogenic effects, through an increase in antiangiogenic factors, THBS1 and CTGF, but the expression of VEGFA is maintained after treatment. Better markers of angiogenic response and a better understanding of the cooperation of chemotherapy and antiangiogenic therapy in the neoadjuvant clinical scenario are needed.

Yu G, Zhou A, Xue J, et al.
FoxM1 promotes breast tumorigenesis by activating PDGF-A and forming a positive feedback loop with the PDGF/AKT signaling pathway.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(13):11281-94 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
The autocrine platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)/PDGF receptor (PDGFR) signaling pathway promotes breast cancer tumorigenesis, but the mechanisms for its dysregulation in breast cancer are largely unknown. In the study, we identified PDGF-A as a novel transcriptional target of FoxM1. FoxM1 directly binds to two sites in the promoter of PDGF-A and activates its transcription. Mutation of these FoxM1-binding sites diminished PDGF-A promoter activity. Increased FoxM1 resulted in the upregulation of PDGF-A, which led to activation of the AKT pathway and increased breast cancer cell proliferation and tumorigenesis, whereas knockdown of FoxM1 does the opposite. Blocking AKT activation with a phosphoinositide 3-kinase/AKT inhibitor decreased FoxM1-induced cell proliferation. Moreover, PDGF/AKT pathway upregulates the expression of FoxM1 in breast cancer cells. Knockdown of PDGF-A or blockade of AKT activation inhibited the expression of FoxM1 in breast cancer cells. Furthermore, expression of FoxM1 significantly correlated with the expression of PDGF-A and the activated AKT signaling pathway in human breast cancer specimens. Our study demonstrates a novel positive regulatory feedback loop between FoxM1 and the PDGF/AKT signaling pathway; this loop contributes to breast cancer cell growth and tumorigenesis.

Verstraete M, Debucquoy A, Dekervel J, et al.
Combining bevacizumab and chemoradiation in rectal cancer. Translational results of the AXEBeam trial.
Br J Cancer. 2015; 112(8):1314-25 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: This study characterises molecular effect of bevacizumab, and explores the relation of molecular and genetic markers with response to bevacizumab combined with chemoradiotherapy (CRT).
METHODS: From a subset of 59 patients of 84 rectal cancer patients included in a phase II study combining bevacizumab with CRT, tumour and blood samples were collected before and during treatment, offering the possibility to evaluate changes induced by one dose of bevacizumab. We performed cDNA microarrays, stains for CD31/CD34 combined with α-SMA and CA-IX, as well as enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for circulating angiogenic proteins. Markers were related with the pathological response of patients.
RESULTS: One dose of bevacizumab changed the expression of 14 genes and led to a significant decrease in microvessel density and in the proportion of pericyte-covered blood vessels, and a small but nonsignificant increase in hypoxia. Alterations in angiogenic processes after bevacizumab delivery were only detected in responding tumours. Lower PDGFA expression and PDGF-BB levels, less pericyte-covered blood vessels and higher CA-IX expression were found after bevacizumab treatment only in patients with pathological complete response.
CONCLUSIONS: We could not support the 'normalization hypothesis' and suggest a role for PDGFA, PDGF-BB, CA-IX and α-SMA. Validation in larger patient groups is needed.

Maura F, Cutrona G, Mosca L, et al.
Association between gene and miRNA expression profiles and stereotyped subset #4 B-cell receptor in chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2015; 56(11):3150-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
In this study we investigated specific biological and clinical features associated with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) patients carrying stereotyped BCR subset #4 (IGHV4-34) among a prospective cohort of 462 CLL/MBL patients in early stage (Binet A). All subset #4 patients (n = 16) were characterized by the IGHV mutated gene configuration, and absence of unfavorable cytogenetic lesions, NOTCH1 or SF3B1 mutations. Gene and miRNA expression profiling evidenced that the leukemic cells of subset #4 cases showed significant downregulation of WDFY4, MF2A and upregulation of PDGFA, FGFR1 and TFEC gene transcripts, as well as the upregulation of miR-497 and miR-29c. The transfection of miR-497 mimic in primary leukemic CLL cells induced a downregulation of BCL2, a known validated target of this miRNA. Our data identify biological characteristics associated with subset #4 patients, providing further evidence for the putative role of BCR in shaping the features of the tumor cells in CLL.

Gong AH, Wei P, Zhang S, et al.
FoxM1 Drives a Feed-Forward STAT3-Activation Signaling Loop That Promotes the Self-Renewal and Tumorigenicity of Glioblastoma Stem-like Cells.
Cancer Res. 2015; 75(11):2337-48 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
The growth factor PDGF controls the development of glioblastoma (GBM), but its contribution to the function of GBM stem-like cells (GSC) has been little studied. Here, we report that the transcription factor FoxM1 promotes PDGFA-STAT3 signaling to drive GSC self-renewal and tumorigenicity. In GBM, we found a positive correlation between expression of FoxM1 and PDGF-A. In GSC and mouse neural stem cells, FoxM1 bound to the PDGF-A promoter to upregulate PDGF-A expression, acting to maintain the stem-like qualities of GSC in part through this mechanism. Analysis of the human cancer genomic database The Cancer Genome Atlas revealed that GBM expresses higher levels of STAT3, a PDGF-A effector signaling molecule, as compared with normal brain. FoxM1 regulated STAT3 transcription through interactions with the β-catenin/TCF4 complex. FoxM1 deficiency inhibited PDGF-A and STAT3 expression in neural stem cells and GSC, abolishing their stem-like and tumorigenic properties. Further mechanistic investigations defined a FoxM1-PDGFA-STAT3 feed-forward pathway that was sufficient to confer stem-like properties to glioma cells. Collectively, our findings showed how FoxM1 activates expression of PDGF-A and STAT3 in a pathway required to maintain the self-renewal and tumorigenicity of glioma stem-like cells.

Jones AC, Antillon KS, Jenkins SM, et al.
Prostate field cancerization: deregulated expression of macrophage inhibitory cytokine 1 (MIC-1) and platelet derived growth factor A (PDGF-A) in tumor adjacent tissue.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(3):e0119314 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Prostate field cancerization denotes molecular alterations in histologically normal tissues adjacent to tumors. Such alterations include deregulated protein expression, as we have previously shown for the key transcription factor early growth response 1 (EGR-1) and the lipogenic enzyme fatty acid synthase (FAS). Here we add the two secreted factors macrophage inhibitory cytokine 1 (MIC-1) and platelet derived growth factor A (PDGF-A) to the growing list of protein markers of prostate field cancerization. Expression of MIC-1 and PDGF-A was measured quantitatively by immunofluorescence and comprehensively analyzed using two methods of signal capture and several groupings of data generated in human cancerous (n = 25), histologically normal adjacent (n = 22), and disease-free (n = 6) prostate tissues. A total of 208 digitized images were analyzed. MIC-1 and PDGF-A expression in tumor tissues were elevated 7.1x to 23.4x and 1.7x to 3.7x compared to disease-free tissues, respectively (p<0.0001 to p = 0.08 and p<0.01 to p = 0.23, respectively). In support of field cancerization, MIC-1 and PDGF-A expression in adjacent tissues were elevated 7.4x to 38.4x and 1.4x to 2.7x, respectively (p<0.0001 to p<0.05 and p<0.05 to p = 0.51, respectively). Also, MIC-1 and PDGF-A expression were similar in tumor and adjacent tissues (0.3x to 1.0x; p<0.001 to p = 0.98 for MIC-1; 0.9x to 2.6x; p<0.01 to p = 1.00 for PDGF-A). All analyses indicated a high level of inter- and intra-tissue heterogeneity across all types of tissues (mean coefficient of variation of 86.0%). Our data shows that MIC-1 and PDGF-A expression is elevated in both prostate tumors and structurally intact adjacent tissues when compared to disease-free specimens, defining field cancerization. These secreted factors could promote tumorigenesis in histologically normal tissues and lead to tumor multifocality. Among several clinical applications, they could also be exploited as indicators of disease in false negative biopsies, identify areas of repeat biopsy, and add molecular information to surgical margins.

Hara Y, Yamashita T, Oishi N, et al.
TSU-68 ameliorates hepatocellular carcinoma growth by inhibiting microenvironmental platelet-derived growth factor signaling.
Anticancer Res. 2015; 35(3):1423-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: TSU-68 is a multikinase inhibitor that targets platelet-derived growth factor receptors (PDGFRs). In the present study, we evaluated the effect of TSU-68 on the tumor-microenvironment interaction in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
MATERIALS AND METHODS: HCC and fibroblast cell lines (HuH7, Hep3B, HuH1 and WI-38) were used to evaluate their interactions. Cancer characteristics were evaluated by spheroid formation and tumorigenicity in immunodeficient mice. Time-lapse image analysis was performed to monitor cell motility.
RESULTS: Although PDGFA was abundantly expressed, PDGFR-α was predominantly located in the cytoplasm and was not functional in HuH7 cells. Co-culture experiments demonstrated that HCC cells induced phosphorylation of PDGFR-α in WI-38 fibroblasts and that stimulated fibroblasts, in turn, boosted the spheroid formation capacity of HCC cells. TSU-68 inhibited phosphorylation of PDGFR-α in WI-38 cells and suppressed the growth of subcutaneously co-injected HuH7/WI-38 tumor xenografts.
CONCLUSION: TSU-68 inhibits stromal PDGF signaling activated by cancer cells and suppresses HCC growth.

Onishi M, Ichikawa T, Kurozumi K, et al.
Annexin A2 regulates angiogenesis and invasion phenotypes of malignant glioma.
Brain Tumor Pathol. 2015; 32(3):184-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
We have established a pair of animal models (J3T-1 and J3T-2) with different invasive and angiogenic phenotypes, and demonstrated that annexin A2 is expressed at higher levels in J3T-1 than J3T-2 cells. The function of annexin A2 in relation to angiogenesis and invasion was investigated using these models. Stable silencing or overexpression of annexin A2 in J3T-1 and J3T-2 cells (J3T-1shA and J3T-2A cells) was established and used. Thirty human glioblastoma samples were evaluated for expression of annexin A2, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF). Immunohistochemical and quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction analyses revealed higher expression of annexin A2, VEGF and PDGF in J3T-1 and J3T-2A cells. Cultured J3T-1 and J3T-2A cells exhibited higher adhesive ability to endothelial cells. Histopathological analysis of animal brain tumors revealed that J3T-1 and J3T-2A tumors displayed marked angiogenesis and invasion along the neovasculature, whereas J3T-2 and J3T-1shA tumors exhibited diffuse, infiltrative invasion without angiogenesis. Positive expression of annexin A2 was observed in tumor cells surrounding dilated vessels in 25/30 human glioblastoma specimens. Our results reveal that the phenotype of glioma invasion is closely related to angiogenesis. We identify annexin A2 as a factor regulating angiogenesis and invasion of malignant gliomas.

Chen SY, Lin JS, Lin HC, et al.
Dependence of fibroblast infiltration in tumor stroma on type IV collagen-initiated integrin signal through induction of platelet-derived growth factor.
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2015; 1853(5):929-39 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer-associated fibroblasts play a crucial role in accelerating tumor progression, but there is a knowledge gap regarding the chemotactic signal activated in a tumor microenvironment. In this study, the expression of type IV collagen was knocked down using a lentiviral-mediated short hairpin RNA strategy. Although there was no obvious effect on cell growth in vitro, silencing the Col4-α1 gene decreased the tumorigenicity of B16F10 in C57BL/6 mice, which was accompanied by a reduction in the infiltration of alpha-smooth muscle actin-positive (α-SMA+) fibroblasts. Silencing the Col4-α1 gene or disrupting integrin engagement by blocking the antibody reduced the expression of platelet-derived growth factor A (PDGF-A), a potent chemotactic factor for fibroblasts. Furthermore, ectopic expression of the autoclustering integrin mutant significantly stimulated PDGF-A expression in murine B16F10 and human U118MG and Huh7 cells. PDGF-A-specific sh-RNA and neutralizing anti-PDGF-A antibody effectively inhibited the transwell migration of fibroblasts. Adding recombinant PDGF-A back to shCol cell-conditioned media restored the fibroblast-attraction ability indicating that PDGF-A is a major chemotactic factor for fibroblasts in the current study model. The integrin-associated PDGF-A production correlated with the activation of Src and ERK. High type IV collagen staining intensity colocalized with elevated PDGF-A expression was observed in tumor tissues obtained from hepatoma and glioma patients. The integrin signal pathway was activated by collagen engagement through Src and ERK, leading to enhanced PDGF-A production, which serves as a key regulator of fibroblast recruitment.

Parashar S, Cheishvili D, Arakelian A, et al.
S-adenosylmethionine blocks osteosarcoma cells proliferation and invasion in vitro and tumor metastasis in vivo: therapeutic and diagnostic clinical applications.
Cancer Med. 2015; 4(5):732-44 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Osteosarcoma (OS) is an aggressive and highly metastatic form of primary bone cancer affecting young children and adults. Previous studies have shown that hypomethylation of critical genes is driving metastasis. Here, we examine whether hypermethylation treatment can block OS growth and pulmonary metastasis. Human OS cells LM-7 and MG-63 were treated with the ubiquitous methyl donor S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) or its inactive analog S-adenosylhomocystine (SAH) as control. Treatment with SAM resulted in a dose-dependent inhibition of tumor cell proliferation, invasion, cell migration, and cell cycle characteristics. Inoculation of cells treated with 150 μmol/L SAM for 6 days into tibia or via intravenous route into Fox Chase severe combined immune deficient (SCID) mice resulted in the development of significantly smaller skeletal lesions and a marked reduction in pulmonary metastasis as compared to control groups. Epigenome wide association studies (EWAS) showed differential methylation of several genes involved in OS progression and prominent signaling pathways implicated in bone formation, wound healing, and tumor progression in SAM-treated LM-7 cells. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) analysis confirmed that SAM treatment blocked the expression of several prometastatic genes and additional genes identified by EWAS analysis. Immunohistochemical analysis of normal human bone and tissue array from OS patients showed significantly high levels of expression of one of the identified gene platelet-derived growth factor alpha (PDGFA). These studies provide a possible mechanism for the role of DNA demethylation in the development and metastasis of OS to provide a rationale for the use of hypermethylation therapy for OS patients and identify new targets for monitoring OS development and progression.

Feng H, Li Y, Yin Y, et al.
Protein kinase A-dependent phosphorylation of Dock180 at serine residue 1250 is important for glioma growth and invasion stimulated by platelet derived-growth factor receptor α.
Neuro Oncol. 2015; 17(6):832-42 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Dedicator of cytokinesis 1 (Dock1 or Dock180), a bipartite guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Rac1, plays critical roles in receptor tyrosine kinase-stimulated cancer growth and invasion. Dock180 activity is required in cell migration cancer tumorigenesis promoted by platelet derived growth factor receptor (PDGFR) and epidermal growth factor receptor.
METHODS: To demonstrate whether PDGFRα promotes tumor malignant behavior through protein kinase A (PKA)-dependent serine phosphorylation of Dock180, we performed cell proliferation, viability, migration, immunoprecipitation, immunoblotting, colony formation, and in vivo tumorigenesis assays using established and short-term explant cultures of glioblastoma cell lines.
RESULTS: Stimulation of PDGFRα results in phosphorylation of Dock180 at serine residue 1250 (S1250), whereas PKA inhibitors H-89 and KT5720 oppose this phosphorylation. S1250 locates within the Rac1-binding Dock homology region 2 domain of Dock180, and its phosphorylation activates Rac1, p-Akt, and phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, while promoting cell migration, in vitro. By expressing RNA interference (RNAi)-resistant wild-type Dock180, but not mutant Dock180 S1250L, we were able to rescue PDGFRα-associated signaling and biological activities in cultured glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) cells that had been treated with RNAi for suppression of endogenous Dock180. In addition, expression of the same RNAi-resistant Dock180 rescued an invasive phenotype of GBM cells following intracranial engraftment in immunocompromised mice.
CONCLUSION: These data describe an important mechanism by which PDGFRα promotes glioma malignant phenotypes through PKA-dependent serine phosphorylation of Dock180, and the data thereby support targeting the PDGFRα-PKA-Dock180-Rac1 axis for treating GBM with molecular profiles indicating PDGFRα signaling dependency.

Koch A, Saran S, Tran DD, et al.
Murine precision-cut liver slices (PCLS): a new tool for studying tumor microenvironments and cell signaling ex vivo.
Cell Commun Signal. 2014; 12:73 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: One of the most insidious characteristics of cancer is its spread to and ability to compromise distant organs via the complex process of metastasis. Communication between cancer cells and organ-resident cells via cytokines/chemokines and direct cell-cell contacts are key steps for survival, proliferation and invasion of metastasized cancer cells in organs. Precision-cut liver slices (PCLS) are considered to closely reflect the in vivo situation and are potentially useful for studying the interaction of cancer cells with liver-resident cells as well as being a potentially useful tool for screening anti-cancer reagents. Application of the PCLS technique in the field of cancer research however, has not yet been well developed.
RESULTS: We established the mouse PCLS system using perfluorodecalin (PFD) as an artificial oxygen carrier. Using this system we show that the adherence of green fluorescent protein (GFP) labeled MDA-MB-231 (highly invasive) cells to liver tissue in the PCLS was 5-fold greater than that of SK-BR-3 (less invasive) cells. In addition, we generated PCLS from THOC5, a member of transcription/export complex (TREX), knockout (KO) mice. The PCLS still expressed Gapdh or Albumin mRNAs at normal levels, while several chemokine/growth factor or metalloprotease genes, such as Cxcl12, Pdgfa, Tgfb, Wnt11, and Mmp1a genes were downregulated more than 2-fold. Interestingly, adhesion of cancer cells to THOC5 KO liver slices was far less (greater than 80% reduction) than to wild-type liver slices.
CONCLUSION: Mouse PCLS cultures in the presence of PFD may serve as a useful tool for screening local adherence and invasiveness of individual cancer cells, since single cells can be observed. This method may also prove useful for identification of genes in liver-resident cells that support cancer invasion by using PCLS from transgenic liver.

Wei T, Zhang LN, Lv Y, et al.
Overexpression of platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha promotes tumor progression and indicates poor prognosis in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(21):10307-17 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Dysregulation of platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha (PDGFRα) has been documented in various cancers. However, its role in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) remains unknown. We and others have examined that upregulation of PDGFRα might be involved in hepatocarcinogenesis. Here, we report that PDGFRα plays a critical role in HCC progression and prognosis. The expression of PDGFRα was markedly higher in human HCC compared to adjacent liver tissues. Although PDGFRA mRNA was decreased in HCC, PDGF-A mRNA was dramatically increased in HCC. Overexpression of PDGFRα was strongly correlated with microvessel density (MVD) of HCC (p<0.05), as well as macroscopic vascular invasion of the tumors (p<0.05). HCC patients with high PDGFRα expression displayed a shorter overall survival and a higher recurrence rate than those with low PDGFRα expression (p<0.05, respectively). Additionally, stable overexpression of PDGFRα in hepatoma cells promoted cell proliferation, migration, invasion and epithelial-mesenchymal transition in vitro. Similarly, an in vivo assay showed that PDGFRα overexpression in hepatoma cells exhibited remarkably tumorigenic potential in tumor size and weight in vivo, which displayed markedly elevated MVD than controls. Thus, our study provided the evidence that PDGFRα may serve as a candidate prognostic marker and a novel therapeutic target for HCC.

Eng KH, Ruggeri C
Connecting prognostic ligand receptor signaling loops in advanced ovarian cancer.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(9):e107193 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Understanding cancer cell signal transduction is a promising lead for uncovering therapeutic targets and building treatment-specific markers for epithelial ovarian cancer. To brodaly assay the many known transmembrane receptor systems, previous studies have employed gene expression data measured on high-throughput microarrays. Starting with the knowledge of validated ligand-receptor pairs (LRPs), these studies postulate that correlation of the two genes implies functional autocrine signaling. It is our goal to consider the additional weight of evidence that prognosis (progression-free survival) can bring to prioritize ovarian cancer specific signaling mechanism. We survey three large studies of epithelial ovarian cancers, with gene expression measurements and clinical information, by modeling survival times both categorically (long/short survival) and continuously. We use differential correlation and proportional hazards regression to identify sets of LRPs that are both prognostic and correlated. Of 475 candidate LRPs, 77 show reproducible evidence of correlation; 55 show differential correlation. Survival models identify 16 LRPs with reproduced, significant interactions. Only two pairs show both interactions and correlation (PDGFA[Formula: see text]PDGFRA and COL1A1[Formula: see text]CD44) suggesting that the majority of prognostically useful LRPs act without positive feedback. We further assess the connectivity of receptors using a Gaussian graphical model finding one large graph and a number of smaller disconnected networks. These LRPs can be organized into mutually exclusive signaling clusters suggesting different mechanisms apply to different patients. We conclude that a mix of autocrine and endocrine LRPs influence prognosis in ovarian cancer, there exists a heterogenous mix of signaling themes across patients, and we point to a number of novel applications of existing targeted therapies which may benefit ovarian cancer.

Saba NF, Wilson M, Doho G, et al.
Mutation and Transcriptional Profiling of Formalin-Fixed Paraffin Embedded Specimens as Companion Methods to Immunohistochemistry for Determining Therapeutic Targets in Oropharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OPSCC): A Pilot of Proof of Principle.
Head Neck Pathol. 2015; 9(2):223-35 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
The role of molecular methods in the diagnosis of head and neck cancer is rapidly evolving and holds great potential for improving outcomes for all patients who suffer from this diverse group of malignancies . However, there is considerable debate as to the best clinical approaches, particularly for Next Generation Sequencing (NGS). The choices of NGS methods such as whole exome, whole genome, whole transcriptomes (RNA-Seq) or multiple gene resequencing panels, each have strengths and weakness based on data quality, the size of the data, the turnaround time for data analysis, and clinical actionability. There have also been a variety of gene expression signatures established from microarray studies that correlate with relapse and response to treatment, but none of these methods have been implemented as standard of care for oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OPSCC). Because many genomic methodologies are still far from the capabilities of most clinical laboratories, we chose to explore the use of a combination of off the shelf targeted mutation analysis and gene expression analysis methods to complement standard anatomical pathology methods. Specifically, we have used the Ion Torrent AmpliSeq cancer panel in combination with the NanoString nCounter Human Cancer Reference Kit on 8 formalin-fixed paraffin embedded (FFPE) OPSCC tumor specimens, (4) HPV-positive and (4) HPV-negative. Differential expression analysis between HPV-positive and negative groups showed that expression of several genes was highly likely to correlate with HPV status. For example, WNT1, PDGFA and OGG1 were all over-expressed in the positive group. Our results show the utility of these methods with routine FFPE clinical specimens to identify potential therapeutic targets which could be readily applied in a clinical trial setting for clinical laboratories lacking the instrumentation or bioinformatics infrastructure to support comprehensive genomics workflows. To the best of our knowledge, these preliminary experiments are among the earliest to combine both mutational and gene expression profiles using Ion Torrent and NanoString technologies. This reports serves as a proof of principle methodology in OPSCC.

Terada T
Primary small cell carcinoma of prostate without immunoreactive neuroendocrine proteins but with expressions of KIT and platelet-derived growth factor-α.
Int J Urol. 2015; 22(1):122-4 [PubMed] Related Publications
Primary small cell carcinoma of the prostate is extremely rare. Herein reported is a case of primary small cell carcinoma of the prostate with immunohistochemical examination of KIT and platelet-derived growth factor-α. The present case is unique in that the small cell carcinoma did not express neuroendocrine antigens. A 68-year-old man was found to have high serum prostate-specific antigen, and biopsy showed malignant small tumor cells fulfilling the small cell carcinoma criteria of the World Health Organization. Immunohistochemically, tumor cells were positive for pan-cytokeratin, KIT, platelet-derived growth factor-α, p53, Ki-67 labeling = 65%, prostate-specific antigen and alpha-methylacyl-CoA racemase. Tumor cells were negative for vimentin, CD56, synaptophysin, chromogranin and neuron-specific enolase. Imaging modalities showed multiple metastases, and the patient was treated by chemotherapy. The present report is the fifth with immunohistochemistry of prostatic small cell carcinoma.

Ozawa T, Riester M, Cheng YK, et al.
Most human non-GCIMP glioblastoma subtypes evolve from a common proneural-like precursor glioma.
Cancer Cell. 2014; 26(2):288-300 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
To understand the relationships between the non-GCIMP glioblastoma (GBM) subgroups, we performed mathematical modeling to predict the temporal sequence of driver events during tumorigenesis. The most common order of evolutionary events is 1) chromosome (chr) 7 gain and chr10 loss, followed by 2) CDKN2A loss and/or TP53 mutation, and 3) alterations canonical for specific subtypes. We then developed a computational methodology to identify drivers of broad copy number changes, identifying PDGFA (chr7) and PTEN (chr10) as driving initial nondisjunction events. These predictions were validated using mouse modeling, showing that PDGFA is sufficient to induce proneural-like gliomas and that additional NF1 loss converts proneural to the mesenchymal subtype. Our findings suggest that most non-GCIMP mesenchymal GBMs arise as, and evolve from, a proneural-like precursor.

Palomero J, Vegliante MC, Rodríguez ML, et al.
SOX11 promotes tumor angiogenesis through transcriptional regulation of PDGFA in mantle cell lymphoma.
Blood. 2014; 124(14):2235-47 [PubMed] Related Publications
SOX11 is overexpressed in several solid tumors and in the vast majority of aggressive mantle cell lymphomas (MCLs). We have recently proven that SOX11 silencing reduces tumor growth in a MCL xenograft model, consistent with the indolent clinical course of the human SOX11-negative mantle cell lymphoma (MCL). However, the direct oncogenic mechanisms and downstream effector pathways implicated in SOX11-driven transformation remain poorly understood. Here, we observed that SOX11-positive xenograft and human primary MCL tumors overexpressed angiogenic gene signatures and had a higher microvascular density compared with their SOX11-negative counterparts. Conditioned media of SOX11-positive MCL cell lines induced in vitro endothelial cell proliferation, migration, tube formation, and activation of downstream angiogenic pathways. We identified PDGFA as a SOX11 direct target gene upregulated in MCL cells whose inhibition impaired SOX11-enhanced in vitro angiogenic effects on endothelial cells. In addition, platelet-derived growth factor A (PDGFA) was overexpressed in SOX11-positive but not in SOX11-negative MCL. In vivo, imatinib impaired tumor angiogenesis and lymphoma growth in SOX11-positive MCL xenograft tumors. Overall, our results demonstrate a prominent role for SOX11 as a driver of proangiogenic signals in MCL, and highlight the SOX11-PDGFA axis as a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of this aggressive disease.

Guillaud-Bataille M, Ragazzon B, de Reyniès A, et al.
IGF2 promotes growth of adrenocortical carcinoma cells, but its overexpression does not modify phenotypic and molecular features of adrenocortical carcinoma.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(8):e103744 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) overexpression is an important molecular marker of adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC), which is a rare but devastating endocrine cancer. It is not clear whether IGF2 overexpression modifies the biology and growth of this cancer, thus more studies are required before IGF2 can be considered as a major therapeutic target. We compared the phenotypical, clinical, biological, and molecular characteristics of ACC with or without the overexpression of IGF2, to address these issues. We also carried out a similar analysis in an ACC cell line (H295R) in which IGF2 expression was knocked down with si- or shRNA. We found no significant differences in the clinical, biological and molecular (transcriptomic) traits between IGF2-high and IGF2-low ACC. The absence of IGF2 overexpression had little influence on the activation of tyrosine kinase pathways both in tumors and in H295 cells that express low levels of IGF2. In IGF2-low tumors, other growth factors (FGF9, PDGFA) are more expressed than in IGF2-high tumors, suggesting that they play a compensatory role in tumor progression. In addition, IGF2 knock-down in H295R cells substantially impaired growth (>50% inhibition), blocked cells in G1 phase, and promoted apoptosis (>2-fold). Finally, analysis of the 11p15 locus showed a paternal uniparental disomy in both IGF2-high and IGF2-low tumors, but low IGF2 expression could be explained in most IGF2-low ACC by an additional epigenetic modification at the 11p15 locus. Altogether, these observations confirm the active role of IGF2 in adrenocortical tumor growth, but also suggest that other growth promoting pathways may be involved in a subset of ACC with low IGF2 expression, which creates opportunities for the use of other targeted therapies.

Xu Z, Huo X, Tang C, et al.
Frequent KIT mutations in human gastrointestinal stromal tumors.
Sci Rep. 2014; 4:5907 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/05/2017 Related Publications
Identifying gene mutations in individual tumors is critical to improve the efficacy of cancer therapy by matching targeted drugs to specific mutations. Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) are stromal or mesenchymal subepithelial neoplasms affecting the gastrointestinal tract and frequently contain activating gene mutations in either KIT or platelet-derived growth factor A (PDGFRA). Although GIST is highly responsive to several selective tyrosine kinase inhibitors, combined use of inhibitors targeting other mutations is needed to further prolong survival in patients with GIST. In this study, we aim to screen and identify genetic mutations in GIST for targeted therapy using the new Ion Torrent next-generation sequencing platform. Utilizing the Ion Ampliseq Cancer Panel, we sequenced 737 loci from 45 cancer-related genes using DNA extracted from formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded (FFPE) samples of 121 human gastrointestinal stromal tumors, set up stringent parameters for reliable variant calling by filtering out potential raw base calling errors, and identified frequent mutations in the KIT gene. This study demonstrates the utility of using Ion Torrent sequencing to efficiently identify human cancer mutations. This may provide a molecular basis for clinically developing new drugs targeting these gene mutations for GIST therapy.

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