Gene Summary

Gene:PPP1R3A; protein phosphatase 1 regulatory subunit 3A
Aliases: GM, PP1G, PPP1R3
Summary:The glycogen-associated form of protein phosphatase-1 (PP1) derived from skeletal muscle is a heterodimer composed of a 37-kD catalytic subunit and a 124-kD targeting and regulatory subunit. This gene encodes the regulatory subunit which binds to muscle glycogen with high affinity, thereby enhancing dephosphorylation of glycogen-bound substrates for PP1 such as glycogen synthase and glycogen phosphorylase kinase. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:protein phosphatase 1 regulatory subunit 3A
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 2019

Cancer Overview

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Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 31 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Latest Publications: PPP1R3A (cancer-related)

Minuesa G, Albanese SK, Xie W, et al.
Small-molecule targeting of MUSASHI RNA-binding activity in acute myeloid leukemia.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):2691 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The MUSASHI (MSI) family of RNA binding proteins (MSI1 and MSI2) contribute to a wide spectrum of cancers including acute myeloid leukemia. We find that the small molecule Ro 08-2750 (Ro) binds directly and selectively to MSI2 and competes for its RNA binding in biochemical assays. Ro treatment in mouse and human myeloid leukemia cells results in an increase in differentiation and apoptosis, inhibition of known MSI-targets, and a shared global gene expression signature similar to shRNA depletion of MSI2. Ro demonstrates in vivo inhibition of c-MYC and reduces disease burden in a murine AML leukemia model. Thus, we identify a small molecule that targets MSI's oncogenic activity. Our study provides a framework for targeting RNA binding proteins in cancer.

Buckley AR, Ideker T, Carter H, Schork NJ
Rare variant phasing using paired tumor:normal sequence data.
BMC Bioinformatics. 2019; 20(1):265 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: In standard high throughput sequencing analysis, genetic variants are not assigned to a homologous chromosome of origin. This process, called haplotype phasing, can reveal information important for understanding the relationship between genetic variants and biological phenotypes. For example, in genes that carry multiple heterozygous missense variants, phasing resolves whether one or both gene copies are altered. Here, we present a novel approach to phasing variants that takes advantage of unique properties of paired tumor:normal sequencing data from cancer studies.
RESULTS: VAF phasing uses changes in variant allele frequency (VAF) between tumor and normal samples in regions of somatic chromosomal gain or loss to phase germline variants. We apply VAF phasing to 6180 samples from the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and demonstrate that our method is highly concordant with other standard phasing methods, and can phase an average of 33% more variants than other read-backed phasing methods. Using variant annotation tools designed to score gene haplotypes, we find a suggestive association between carrying multiple missense variants in a single copy of a cancer predisposition gene and earlier age of cancer diagnosis.
CONCLUSIONS: VAF phasing exploits unique properties of tumor genomes to increase the number of germline variants that can be phased over standard read-backed methods in paired tumor:normal samples. Our phase-informed association testing results call attention to the need to develop more tools for assessing the joint effect of multiple genetic variants.

Zhao J, Lee EE, Kim J, et al.
Transforming activity of an oncoprotein-encoding circular RNA from human papillomavirus.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):2300 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Single-stranded circular RNAs (circRNAs), generated through 'backsplicing', occur more extensively than initially anticipated. The possible functions of the vast majority of circRNAs remain unknown. Virus-derived circRNAs have recently been described in gamma-herpesviruses. We report that oncogenic human papillomaviruses (HPVs) generate circRNAs, some of which encompass the E7 oncogene (circE7). HPV16 circE7 is detectable by both inverse RT-PCR and northern blotting of HPV16-transformed cells. CircE7 is N

Hu Y, Chen CH, Ding YY, et al.
Optimal control nodes in disease-perturbed networks as targets for combination therapy.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):2180 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Most combination therapies are developed based on targets of existing drugs, which only represent a small portion of the human proteome. We introduce a network controllability-based method, OptiCon, for de novo identification of synergistic regulators as candidates for combination therapy. These regulators jointly exert maximal control over deregulated genes but minimal control over unperturbed genes in a disease. Using data from three cancer types, we show that 68% of predicted regulators are either known drug targets or have a critical role in cancer development. Predicted regulators are depleted for known proteins associated with side effects. Predicted synergy is supported by disease-specific and clinically relevant synthetic lethal interactions and experimental validation. A significant portion of genes regulated by synergistic regulators participate in dense interactions between co-regulated subnetworks and contribute to therapy resistance. OptiCon represents a general framework for systemic and de novo identification of synergistic regulators underlying a cellular state transition.

Ando M, Saito Y, Xu G, et al.
Chromatin dysregulation and DNA methylation at transcription start sites associated with transcriptional repression in cancers.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):2188 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Although promoter-associated CpG islands have been established as targets of DNA methylation changes in cancer, previous studies suggest that epigenetic dysregulation outside the promoter region may be more closely associated with transcriptional changes. Here we examine DNA methylation, chromatin marks, and transcriptional alterations to define the relationship between transcriptional modulation and spatial changes in chromatin structure. Using human papillomavirus-related oropharyngeal carcinoma as a model, we show aberrant enrichment of repressive H3K9me3 at the transcriptional start site (TSS) with methylation-associated, tumor-specific gene silencing. Further analysis identifies a hypermethylated subtype which shows a functional convergence on MYC targets and association with CREBBP/EP300 mutation. The tumor-specific shift to transcriptional repression associated with DNA methylation at TSSs was confirmed in multiple tumor types. Our data may show a common underlying epigenetic dysregulation in cancer associated with broad enrichment of repressive chromatin marks and aberrant DNA hypermethylation at TSSs in combination with MYC network activation.

Dong H, Adams NM, Xu Y, et al.
The IRE1 endoplasmic reticulum stress sensor activates natural killer cell immunity in part by regulating c-Myc.
Nat Immunol. 2019; 20(7):865-878 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
Natural killer (NK) cells are critical mediators of host immunity to pathogens. Here, we demonstrate that the endoplasmic reticulum stress sensor inositol-requiring enzyme 1 (IRE1α) and its substrate transcription factor X-box-binding protein 1 (XBP1) drive NK cell responses against viral infection and tumors in vivo. IRE1α-XBP1 were essential for expansion of activated mouse and human NK cells and are situated downstream of the mammalian target of rapamycin signaling pathway. Transcriptome and chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis revealed c-Myc as a new and direct downstream target of XBP1 for regulation of NK cell proliferation. Genetic ablation or pharmaceutical blockade of IRE1α downregulated c-Myc, and NK cells with c-Myc haploinsufficency phenocopied IRE1α-XBP1 deficiency. c-Myc overexpression largely rescued the proliferation defect in IRE1α

Jain SU, Do TJ, Lund PJ, et al.
PFA ependymoma-associated protein EZHIP inhibits PRC2 activity through a H3 K27M-like mechanism.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):2146 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
Posterior fossa type A (PFA) ependymomas exhibit very low H3K27 methylation and express high levels of EZHIP (Enhancer of Zeste Homologs Inhibitory Protein, also termed CXORF67). Here we find that a conserved sequence in EZHIP is necessary and sufficient to inhibit PRC2 catalytic activity in vitro and in vivo. EZHIP directly contacts the active site of the EZH2 subunit in a mechanism similar to the H3 K27M oncohistone. Furthermore, expression of H3 K27M or EZHIP in cells promotes similar chromatin profiles: loss of broad H3K27me3 domains, but retention of H3K27me3 at CpG islands. We find that H3K27me3-mediated allosteric activation of PRC2 substantially increases the inhibition potential of EZHIP and H3 K27M, providing a mechanism to explain the observed loss of H3K27me3 spreading in tumors. Our data indicate that PFA ependymoma and DIPG are driven in part by the action of peptidyl PRC2 inhibitors, the K27M oncohistone and the EZHIP 'oncohistone-mimic', that dysregulate gene silencing to promote tumorigenesis.

Wang C, Gao F, Giannakis GB, et al.
Efficient proximal gradient algorithm for inference of differential gene networks.
BMC Bioinformatics. 2019; 20(1):224 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Gene networks in living cells can change depending on various conditions such as caused by different environments, tissue types, disease states, and development stages. Identifying the differential changes in gene networks is very important to understand molecular basis of various biological process. While existing algorithms can be used to infer two gene networks separately from gene expression data under two different conditions, and then to identify network changes, such an approach does not exploit the similarity between two gene networks, and it is thus suboptimal. A desirable approach would be clearly to infer two gene networks jointly, which can yield improved estimates of network changes.
RESULTS: In this paper, we developed a proximal gradient algorithm for differential network (ProGAdNet) inference, that jointly infers two gene networks under different conditions and then identifies changes in the network structure. Computer simulations demonstrated that our ProGAdNet outperformed existing algorithms in terms of inference accuracy, and was much faster than a similar approach for joint inference of gene networks. Gene expression data of breast tumors and normal tissues in the TCGA database were analyzed with our ProGAdNet, and revealed that 268 genes were involved in the changed network edges. Gene set enrichment analysis identified a significant number of gene sets related to breast cancer or other types of cancer that are enriched in this set of 268 genes. Network analysis of the kidney cancer data in the TCGA database with ProGAdNet also identified a set of genes involved in network changes, and the majority of the top genes identified have been reported in the literature to be implicated in kidney cancer. These results corroborated that the gene sets identified by ProGAdNet were very informative about the cancer disease status. A software package implementing the ProGAdNet, computer simulations, and real data analysis is available as Additional file 1.
CONCLUSION: With its superior performance over existing algorithms, ProGAdNet provides a valuable tool for finding changes in gene networks, which may aid the discovery of gene-gene interactions changed under different conditions.

Mimitou EP, Cheng A, Montalbano A, et al.
Multiplexed detection of proteins, transcriptomes, clonotypes and CRISPR perturbations in single cells.
Nat Methods. 2019; 16(5):409-412 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
Multimodal single-cell assays provide high-resolution snapshots of complex cell populations, but are mostly limited to transcriptome plus an additional modality. Here, we describe expanded CRISPR-compatible cellular indexing of transcriptomes and epitopes by sequencing (ECCITE-seq) for the high-throughput characterization of at least five modalities of information from each single cell. We demonstrate application of ECCITE-seq to multimodal CRISPR screens with robust direct single-guide RNA capture and to clonotype-aware multimodal phenotyping of cancer samples.

Kurahashi R, Kadomatsu T, Baba M, et al.
MicroRNA-204-5p: A novel candidate urinary biomarker of Xp11.2 translocation renal cell carcinoma.
Cancer Sci. 2019; 110(6):1897-1908 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
Xp11.2 translocation renal cell carcinoma (Xp11 tRCC) is a rare sporadic pediatric kidney cancer caused by constitutively active TFE3 fusion proteins. Tumors in patients with Xp11 tRCC tend to recur and undergo frequent metastasis, in part due to lack of methods available to detect early-stage disease. Here we generated transgenic (Tg) mice overexpressing the human PRCC-TFE3 fusion gene in renal tubular epithelial cells, as an Xp11 tRCC mouse model. At 20 weeks of age, mice showed no histological abnormalities in kidney but by 40 weeks showed Xp11 tRCC development and related morphological and histological changes. MicroRNA (miR)-204-5p levels in urinary exosomes of 40-week-old Tg mice showing tRCC were significantly elevated compared with levels in control mice. MicroRNA-204-5p expression also significantly increased in primary renal cell carcinoma cell lines established both from Tg mouse tumors and from tumor tissue from 2 Xp11 tRCC patients. All of these lines secreted miR-204-5p-containing exosomes. Notably, we also observed increased miR-204-5p levels in urinary exosomes in 20-week-old renal PRCC-TFE3 Tg mice prior to tRCC development, and those levels were equivalent to those in 40-week-old Tg mice, suggesting that miR-204-5p increases follow expression of constitutively active TFE3 fusion proteins in renal tubular epithelial cells prior to overt tRCC development. Finally, we confirmed that miR-204-5p expression significantly increases in noncancerous human kidney cells after overexpression of a PRCC-TFE3 fusion gene. These findings suggest that miR-204-5p in urinary exosomes could be a useful biomarker for early diagnosis of patients with Xp11 tRCC.

Richelle A, Chiang AWT, Kuo CC, Lewis NE
Increasing consensus of context-specific metabolic models by integrating data-inferred cell functions.
PLoS Comput Biol. 2019; 15(4):e1006867 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
Genome-scale metabolic models provide a valuable context for analyzing data from diverse high-throughput experimental techniques. Models can quantify the activities of diverse pathways and cellular functions. Since some metabolic reactions are only catalyzed in specific environments, several algorithms exist that build context-specific models. However, these methods make differing assumptions that influence the content and associated predictive capacity of resulting models, such that model content varies more due to methods used than cell types. Here we overcome this problem with a novel framework for inferring the metabolic functions of a cell before model construction. For this, we curated a list of metabolic tasks and developed a framework to infer the activity of these functionalities from transcriptomic data. We protected the data-inferred tasks during the implementation of diverse context-specific model extraction algorithms for 44 cancer cell lines. We show that the protection of data-inferred metabolic tasks decreases the variability of models across extraction methods. Furthermore, resulting models better capture the actual biological variability across cell lines. This study highlights the potential of using biological knowledge, inferred from omics data, to obtain a better consensus between existing extraction algorithms. It further provides guidelines for the development of the next-generation of data contextualization methods.

Tiwari A, Mukherjee B, Hassan MK, et al.
Reduced FRG1 expression promotes prostate cancer progression and affects prostate cancer cell migration and invasion.
BMC Cancer. 2019; 19(1):346 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Prostate cancer is the most common form of cancer in males and accounts for high cancer related deaths. Therapeutic advancement in prostate cancer has not been able to reduce the mortality burden of prostate cancer, which warrants further research. FRG1 which affects angiogenesis and cell migration in Xenopus, can be a potential player in tumorigenesis. In this study, we investigated the role of FRG1 in prostate cancer progression.
METHODS: Immunohistochemistry was performed to determine FRG1 expression in patient samples. FRG1 expression perturbation was done to investigate the effect of FRG1 on cell proliferation, migration and invasion, in DU145, PC3 and LNCaP cells. To understand the mechanism, we checked expression of various cytokines and MMPs by q-RT PCR, signaling molecules by western blot, in FRG1 perturbation sets. Results were validated by use of pharmacological inhibitor and activator and, western blot.
RESULTS: In prostate cancer tissue, FRG1 levels were significantly reduced, compared to the uninvolved counterpart. FRG1 expression showed variable effect on PC3 and DU145 cell proliferation. FRG1 levels consistently affected cell migration and invasion, in both DU145 and PC3 cells. Ectopic expression of FRG1 led to significant reduction in cell migration and invasion in both DU145 and PC3 cells, reverse trends were observed with FRG1 knockdown. In androgen receptor positive cell line LNCaP, FRG1 doesn't affect any of the cell properties. FRG1 knockdown led to significantly enhanced expression of GM-CSF, MMP1, PDGFA and CXCL1, in PC3 cells and, in DU145, it led to higher expression of GM-CSF, MMP1 and PLGF. Interestingly, FRG1 knockdown in both the cell lines led to activation of p38 MAPK. Pharmacological activation of p38 MAPK led to increase in the expression of GM-CSF and PLGF in DU145 whereas in PC3 it led to enhanced expression of GM-CSF, MMP1 and CXCL1. On the other hand, inhibition of p38 MAPK led to reduction in the expression of above mentioned cytokines.
CONCLUSION: FRG1 expression is reduced in prostate adenocarcinoma tissue. FRG1 expression affects migration and invasion in AR negative prostate cancer cells through known MMPs and cytokines, which may be mediated primarily via p38 MAPK activation.

Jahan R, Ganguly K, Smith LM, et al.
Trefoil factor(s) and CA19.9: A promising panel for early detection of pancreatic cancer.
EBioMedicine. 2019; 42:375-385 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Trefoil factors (TFF1, TFF2, and TFF3) are small secretory molecules that recently have gained significant attention in multiple studies as an integral component of pancreatic cancer (PC) subtype-specific gene signature. Here, we comprehensively investigated the diagnostic potential of all the member of trefoil family, i.e., TFF1, TFF2, and TFF3 in combination with CA19.9 for detection of PC.
METHODS: Trefoil factors (TFFs) gene expression was analyzed in publicly available cancer genome datasets, followed by assessment of their expression in genetically engineered spontaneous mouse model (GEM) of PC (KrasG12D; Pdx1-Cre (KC)) and in human tissue microarray consisting of normal pancreas adjacent to tumor (NAT), precursor lesions (PanIN), and various pathological grades of PC by immunohistochemistry (IHC). Serum TFFs and CA19.9 levels were evaluated via ELISA in comprehensive sample set (n = 362) comprised of independent training and validation sets each containing benign controls (BC), chronic pancreatitis (CP), and various stages of PC. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression and receiver operating characteristic curves (ROC) were used to examine their diagnostic potential both alone and in combination with CA19.9.
FINDINGS: The publicly available datasets and expression analysis revealed significant increased expression of TFF1, TFF2, and TFF3 in human PanINs and PC tissues. Assessment of KC mouse model also suggested upregulated expression of TFFs in PanIN lesions and early stage of PC. In serum analyses studies, TFF1 and TFF2 were significantly elevated in early stages of PC in comparison to benign and CP control group while significant elevation in TFF3 levels were observed in CP group with no further elevation in its level in early stage PC group. In receiver operating curve (ROC) analyses, combination of TFFs with CA19.9 emerged as promising panel for discriminating early stage of PC (EPC) from BC (AUC
INTERPRETATION: In silico, tissue and serum analyses validated significantly increased level of all TFFs in precursor lesions and early stages of PC. The combination of TFFs enhanced sensitivity and specificity of CA19.9 to discriminate early stage of PC from benign control and chronic pancreatitis groups.

Zhou Y, Gerrard DL, Wang J, et al.
Temporal dynamic reorganization of 3D chromatin architecture in hormone-induced breast cancer and endocrine resistance.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):1522 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 13/11/2019 Related Publications
Recent studies have demonstrated that chromatin architecture is linked to the progression of cancers. However, the roles of 3D structure and its dynamics in hormone-dependent breast cancer and endocrine resistance are largely unknown. Here we report the dynamics of 3D chromatin structure across a time course of estradiol (E2) stimulation in human estrogen receptor α (ERα)-positive breast cancer cells. We identified subsets of temporally highly dynamic compartments predominantly associated with active open chromatin and found that these highly dynamic compartments showed higher alteration in tamoxifen-resistant breast cancer cells. Remarkably, these compartments are characterized by active chromatin states, and enhanced ERα binding but decreased transcription factor CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) binding. We finally identified a set of ERα-bound promoter-enhancer looping genes enclosed within altered domains that are enriched with cancer invasion, aggressiveness or metabolism signaling pathways. This large-scale analysis expands our understanding of high-order temporal chromatin reorganization underlying hormone-dependent breast cancer.

Lombard DB, Cierpicki T, Grembecka J
Combined MAPK Pathway and HDAC Inhibition Breaks Melanoma.
Cancer Discov. 2019; 9(4):469-471 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/04/2020 Related Publications
In this issue, Maertens and colleagues demonstrate that HDAC3 inhibition potentiates the effects of MAPK pathway inhibitors in melanoma, including difficult-to-treat

Jang HS, Shah NM, Du AY, et al.
Transposable elements drive widespread expression of oncogenes in human cancers.
Nat Genet. 2019; 51(4):611-617 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
Transposable elements (TEs) are an abundant and rich genetic resource of regulatory sequences

Lima-Fernandes E, Murison A, da Silva Medina T, et al.
Targeting bivalency de-represses Indian Hedgehog and inhibits self-renewal of colorectal cancer-initiating cells.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):1436 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
In embryonic stem cells, promoters of key lineage-specific differentiation genes are found in a bivalent state, having both activating H3K4me3 and repressive H3K27me3 histone marks, making them poised for transcription upon loss of H3K27me3. Whether cancer-initiating cells (C-ICs) have similar epigenetic mechanisms that prevent lineage commitment is unknown. Here we show that colorectal C-ICs (CC-ICs) are maintained in a stem-like state through a bivalent epigenetic mechanism. Disruption of the bivalent state through inhibition of the H3K27 methyltransferase EZH2, resulted in decreased self-renewal of patient-derived C-ICs. Epigenomic analyses revealed that the promoter of Indian Hedgehog (IHH), a canonical driver of normal colonocyte differentiation, exists in a bivalent chromatin state. Inhibition of EZH2 resulted in de-repression of IHH, decreased self-renewal, and increased sensitivity to chemotherapy in vivo. Our results reveal an epigenetic block to differentiation in CC-ICs and demonstrate the potential for epigenetic differentiation therapy of a solid tumour through EZH2 inhibition.

Bakke J, Wright WC, Zamora AE, et al.
Genome-wide CRISPR screen reveals PSMA6 to be an essential gene in pancreatic cancer cells.
BMC Cancer. 2019; 19(1):253 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Despite its relatively low incidence, pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a leading cause of cancer deaths because of the aggressive growth/metastasis of the tumor, the lack of early symptoms, and the poor treatment options. Basic research to identify potential therapeutic targets for PDAC is greatly needed.
METHODS: We used a negative-selection genome-wide CRISPR screen to identify essential genes in the PANC-1 human pancreatic carcinoma cell line. We validated the top hits with follow-up siRNA screens, using the HPNE, HPAF-II, AsPC-1, and Mia PaCa-2 cell lines.
RESULTS: The PSMA6 gene was an identified candidate hit after the CRISPR screen, siRNA validation screen, and siRNA deconvolution screen. Spheroid formation assays and flow cytometry analysis showed that PSMA6 is critical for survival in many pancreatic ductal carcinoma cell models. Lastly, as PSMA6 protein is a proteosomal subunit of the 20S core complex, we showed that bortezomib, a proteasome inhibitor, was especially toxic in PANC-1 cells.
CONCLUSIONS: Further study of PSMA6 and the proteasome subunit that it encodes, along with other hits identified in our CRISPR screens, may provide valuable insights into potential therapeutic targets for PDAC.

Sabol RA, Beighley A, Giacomelli P, et al.
Obesity-Altered Adipose Stem Cells Promote ER⁺ Breast Cancer Metastasis through Estrogen Independent Pathways.
Int J Mol Sci. 2019; 20(6) [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
Adipose stem cells (ASCs) play an essential role in tumor microenvironments. These cells are altered by obesity (obASCs) and previous studies have shown that obASCs secrete higher levels of leptin. Increased leptin, which upregulates estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) and aromatase, enhances estrogen bioavailability and signaling in estrogen receptor positive (ER⁺) breast cancer (BC) tumor growth and metastasis. In this study, we evaluate the effect of obASCs on ER⁺BC outside of the ERα signaling axis using breast cancer models with constitutively active ERα resulting from clinically relevant mutations (Y537S and D538G). We found that while obASCs promote tumor growth and proliferation, it occurs mostly through abrogated estrogen signaling when BC has constitutive ER activity. However, obASCs have a similar promotion of metastasis irrespective of ER status, demonstrating that obASC promotion of metastasis may not be completely estrogen dependent. We found that obASCs upregulate two genes in both ER wild type (WT) and ER mutant (MUT) BC:

Ding L, Shunkwiler LB, Harper NW, et al.
Deletion of Cdkn1b in ACI rats leads to increased proliferation and pregnancy-associated changes in the mammary gland due to perturbed systemic endocrine environment.
PLoS Genet. 2019; 15(3):e1008002 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
Mammary epithelial progenitors are the normal cell-of-origin of breast cancer. We previously defined a population of p27+ quiescent hormone-responsive progenitor cells in the normal human breast whose frequency associates with breast cancer risk. Here, we describe that deletion of the Cdkn1b gene encoding the p27 cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor in the estrogen-induced mammary tumor-susceptible ACI rat strain leads to a decrease in the relative frequencies of Cd49b+ mammary luminal epithelial progenitors and pregnancy-related differentiation. We show by comprehensive gene expression profiling of purified progenitor and differentiated mammary epithelial cell populations that p27 deletion has the most pronounced effects on luminal progenitors. Cdkn1b-/- females have decreased fertility, but rats that are able to get pregnant had normal litter size and were able to nurse their pups implying that loss of p27 in ACI rats does not completely abrogate ovarian function and lactation. Reciprocal mammary gland transplantation experiments indicate that the p27-loss-induced changes in mammary epithelial cells are not only caused by alterations in their intrinsic properties, but are likely due to altered hormonal signaling triggered by the perturbed systemic endocrine environment observed in Cdkn1b-/- females. We also observed a decrease in the frequency of mammary epithelial cells positive for progesterone receptor (Pr) and FoxA1, known direct transcriptional targets of the estrogen receptor (Erα), and an increase in phospho-Stat5 positive cells commonly induced by prolactin (Prl). Characterization of genome-wide Pr chromatin binding revealed distinct binding patterns in mammary epithelial cells of Cdkn1b+/+ and Cdkn1b-/- females and enrichment in genes with known roles in Notch, ErbB, leptin, and Erα signaling and regulation of G1-S transition. Our data support a role for p27 in regulating the pool size of hormone-responsive luminal progenitors that could impact breast cancer risk.

Harutyunyan AS, Krug B, Chen H, et al.
H3K27M induces defective chromatin spread of PRC2-mediated repressive H3K27me2/me3 and is essential for glioma tumorigenesis.
Nat Commun. 2019; 10(1):1262 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
Lys-27-Met mutations in histone 3 genes (H3K27M) characterize a subgroup of deadly gliomas and decrease genome-wide H3K27 trimethylation. Here we use primary H3K27M tumor lines and isogenic CRISPR-edited controls to assess H3K27M effects in vitro and in vivo. We find that whereas H3K27me3 and H3K27me2 are normally deposited by PRC2 across broad regions, their deposition is severely reduced in H3.3K27M cells. H3K27me3 is unable to spread from large unmethylated CpG islands, while H3K27me2 can be deposited outside these PRC2 high-affinity sites but to levels corresponding to H3K27me3 deposition in wild-type cells. Our findings indicate that PRC2 recruitment and propagation on chromatin are seemingly unaffected by K27M, which mostly impairs spread of the repressive marks it catalyzes, especially H3K27me3. Genome-wide loss of H3K27me3 and me2 deposition has limited transcriptomic consequences, preferentially affecting lowly-expressed genes regulating neurogenesis. Removal of H3K27M restores H3K27me2/me3 spread, impairs cell proliferation, and completely abolishes their capacity to form tumors in mice.

Yardımcı GG, Ozadam H, Sauria MEG, et al.
Measuring the reproducibility and quality of Hi-C data.
Genome Biol. 2019; 20(1):57 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Hi-C is currently the most widely used assay to investigate the 3D organization of the genome and to study its role in gene regulation, DNA replication, and disease. However, Hi-C experiments are costly to perform and involve multiple complex experimental steps; thus, accurate methods for measuring the quality and reproducibility of Hi-C data are essential to determine whether the output should be used further in a study.
RESULTS: Using real and simulated data, we profile the performance of several recently proposed methods for assessing reproducibility of population Hi-C data, including HiCRep, GenomeDISCO, HiC-Spector, and QuASAR-Rep. By explicitly controlling noise and sparsity through simulations, we demonstrate the deficiencies of performing simple correlation analysis on pairs of matrices, and we show that methods developed specifically for Hi-C data produce better measures of reproducibility. We also show how to use established measures, such as the ratio of intra- to interchromosomal interactions, and novel ones, such as QuASAR-QC, to identify low-quality experiments.
CONCLUSIONS: In this work, we assess reproducibility and quality measures by varying sequencing depth, resolution and noise levels in Hi-C data from 13 cell lines, with two biological replicates each, as well as 176 simulated matrices. Through this extensive validation and benchmarking of Hi-C data, we describe best practices for reproducibility and quality assessment of Hi-C experiments. We make all software publicly available at http://github.com/kundajelab/3DChromatin_ReplicateQC to facilitate adoption in the community.

Szymura SJ, Zaemes JP, Allison DF, et al.
NF-κB upregulates glutamine-fructose-6-phosphate transaminase 2 to promote migration in non-small cell lung cancer.
Cell Commun Signal. 2019; 17(1):24 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) results in changes that promote de-differentiation, migration, and invasion in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). While it is recognized that EMT promotes altered energy utilization, identification of metabolic pathways that link EMT with cancer progression is needed. Work presented here indicates that mesenchymal NSCLC upregulates glutamine-fructose-6-phosphate transaminase 2 (GFPT2). GFPT2 is the rate-limiting enzyme in the synthesis of uridine diphosphate N-acetylglucosamine (UDP-GlcNAc). UDP-GlcNAc is the obligate activator of O-linked N-acetylglucosamine transferase (OGT).
METHODS: Analysis of our transcriptomic data indicates that GFPT2 is one of the most significantly upregulated metabolic genes in mesenchymal NSCLC. Ectopic GFPT2 expression, as well as gene silencing strategies were used to determine the importance of this metabolic enzyme in regulating EMT-driven processes of cell motility and invasion.
RESULTS: Our work demonstrates that GFPT2 is transcriptionally upregulated by NF-κB and repressed by the NAD
CONCLUSIONS: Consistent with GFPT2 promoting cancer progression, we find that elevated GFPT2 expression correlates with poor clinical outcome in NSCLC. Modulation of GFPT2 activity offers a potentially important therapeutic target to combat NSCLC disease progression.

Yoon H, Kim M, Jang K, et al.
p27 transcriptionally coregulates cJun to drive programs of tumor progression.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019; 116(14):7005-7014 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
p27 shifts from CDK inhibitor to oncogene when phosphorylated by PI3K effector kinases. Here, we show that p27 is a cJun coregulator, whose assembly and chromatin association is governed by p27 phosphorylation. In breast and bladder cancer cells with high p27pT157pT198 or expressing a CDK-binding defective p27pT157pT198 phosphomimetic (p27CK-DD), cJun is activated and interacts with p27, and p27/cJun complexes localize to the nucleus. p27/cJun up-regulates

Kawazoe T, Taniguchi K
The Sprouty/Spred family as tumor suppressors: Coming of age.
Cancer Sci. 2019; 110(5):1525-1535 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/09/2019 Related Publications
The Ras/Raf/ERK pathway is one of the most frequently dysregulated signaling pathways in various cancers. In some such cancers, Ras and Raf are hotspots for mutations, which cause continuous activation of this pathway. However, in some other cancers, it is known that negative regulators of the Ras/Raf/ERK pathway are responsible for uncontrolled activation. The Sprouty/Spred family is broadly recognized as important negative regulators of the Ras/Raf/ERK pathway, and its expression is downregulated in many malignancies, leading to hyperactivation of the Ras/Raf/ERK pathway. After the discovery of this family, intensive research investigated the mechanism by which it suppresses the Ras/Raf/ERK pathway and its roles in developmental and pathophysiological processes. In this review, we discuss the complicated roles of the Sprouty/Spred family in tumor initiation, promotion, and progression and its future therapeutic potential.

Fritz AJ, Gillis NE, Gerrard DL, et al.
Higher order genomic organization and epigenetic control maintain cellular identity and prevent breast cancer.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2019; 58(7):484-499 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/07/2020 Related Publications
Cells establish and sustain structural and functional integrity of the genome to support cellular identity and prevent malignant transformation. In this review, we present a strategic overview of epigenetic regulatory mechanisms including histone modifications and higher order chromatin organization (HCO) that are perturbed in breast cancer onset and progression. Implications for dysfunctions that occur in hormone regulation, cell cycle control, and mitotic bookmarking in breast cancer are considered, with an emphasis on epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and cancer stem cell activities. The architectural organization of regulatory machinery is addressed within the contexts of translating cancer-compromised genomic organization to advances in breast cancer risk assessment, diagnosis, prognosis, and identification of novel therapeutic targets with high specificity and minimal off target effects.

Verhaak RGW, Bafna V, Mischel PS
Extrachromosomal oncogene amplification in tumour pathogenesis and evolution.
Nat Rev Cancer. 2019; 19(5):283-288 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recent reports have demonstrated that oncogene amplification on extrachromosomal DNA (ecDNA) is a frequent event in cancer, providing new momentum to explore a phenomenon first discovered several decades ago. The direct consequence of ecDNA gains in these cases is an increase in DNA copy number of the oncogenes residing on the extrachromosomal element. A secondary effect, perhaps even more important, is that the unequal segregation of ecDNA from a parental tumour cell to offspring cells rapidly increases tumour heterogeneity, thus providing the tumour with an additional array of responses to microenvironment-induced and therapy-induced stress factors and perhaps providing an evolutionary advantage. This Perspectives article discusses the current knowledge and potential implications of oncogene amplification on ecDNA in cancer.

Bardi GT, Al-Rayan N, Richie JL, et al.
Detection of Inflammation-Related Melanoma Small Extracellular Vesicle (sEV) mRNA Content Using Primary Melanocyte sEVs as a Reference.
Int J Mol Sci. 2019; 20(5) [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/07/2020 Related Publications
Melanoma-derived small extracellular vesicles (sEVs) participate in tumor pathogenesis. Tumor pathogenesis is highly dependent on inflammatory processes. Given the potential for melanoma sEVs to carry tumor biomarkers, we explored the hypothesis that they may contain inflammation-related mRNA content. Biophysical characterization showed that human primary melanocyte-derived sEVs trended toward being smaller and having less negative (more neutral) zeta potential than human melanoma sEVs (A-375, SKMEL-28, and C-32). Using primary melanocyte sEVs as the control population, RT-qPCR array results demonstrated similarities and differences in gene expression between melanoma sEV types. Upregulation of pro-angiogenic chemokine ligand CXCL1, CXCL2, and CXCL8 mRNAs in A-375 and SKMEL-28 melanoma sEVs was the most consistent finding. This paralleled increased production of CXCL1, CXCL2, and CXCL8 proteins by A-375 and SKMEL-28 sEV source cells. Overall, the use of primary melanocyte sEVs as a control sEV reference population facilitated the detection of inflammation-related melanoma sEV mRNA content.

Pyke RM, Genolet R, Harari A, et al.
Computational KIR copy number discovery reveals interaction between inhibitory receptor burden and survival.
Pac Symp Biocomput. 2019; 24:148-159 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/07/2020 Related Publications
Natural killer (NK) cells have increasingly become a target of interest for immunotherapies. NK cells express killer immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs), which play a vital role in immune response to tumors by detecting cellular abnormalities. The genomic region encoding the 16 KIR genes displays high polymorphic variability in human populations, making it difficult to resolve individual genotypes based on next generation sequencing data. As a result, the impact of polymorphic KIR variation on cancer phenotypes has been understudied. Currently, labor-intensive, experimental techniques are used to determine an individual's KIR gene copy number profile. Here, we develop an algorithm to determine the germline copy number of KIR genes from whole exome sequencing data and apply it to a cohort of nearly 5000 cancer patients. We use a k-mer based approach to capture sequences unique to specific genes, count their occurrences in the set of reads derived from an individual and compare the individual's k-mer distribution to that of the population. Copy number results demonstrate high concordance with population copy number expectations. Our method reveals that the burden of inhibitory KIR genes is associated with survival in two tumor types, highlighting the potential importance of KIR variation in understanding tumor development and response to immunotherapy.

Matossian MD, Burks HE, Elliott S, et al.
Drug resistance profiling of a new triple negative breast cancer patient-derived xenograft model.
BMC Cancer. 2019; 19(1):205 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/07/2020 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) represents an aggressive subtype with limited therapeutic options. Experimental preclinical models that recapitulate their tumors of origin can accelerate target identification, thereby potentially improving therapeutic efficacy. Patient-derived xenografts (PDXs), due to their genomic and transcriptomic fidelity to the tumors from which they are derived, are poised to improve the preclinical testing of drug-target combinations in translational models. Despite the previous development of breast and TNBC PDX models, those derived from patients with demonstrated health-disparities are lacking.
METHODS: We use an aggressive TNBC PDX model propagated in SCID/Beige mice that was established from an African-American woman, TU-BcX-2 K1, and assess its metastatic potential and drug sensitivities under distinct in vitro conditions. Cellular derivatives of the primary tumor or the PDX were grown in 2D culture conditions or grown in mammospheres 3D culture. Flow cytometry and fluorescence staining was used to quantify cancer stem cell-like populations. qRT-PCR was used to describe the mesenchymal gene signature of the tumor. The sensitivity of TU-BcX-2 K1-derived cells to anti-neoplastic oncology drugs was compared in adherent cells and mammospheres. Drug response was evaluated using a live/dead staining kit and crystal violet staining.
RESULTS: TU-BcX-2 K1 has a low propensity for metastasis, reflects a mesenchymal state, and contains a large burden of cancer stem cells. We show that TU-BcX-2 K1 cells have differential responses to cytotoxic and targeted therapies in 2D compared to 3D culture conditions insofar as several drug classes conferred sensitivity in 2D but not in 3D culture, or cells grown as mammospheres.
CONCLUSIONS: Here we introduce a new TNBC PDX model and demonstrate the differences in evaluating drug sensitivity in adherent cells compared to mammosphere, or suspension, culture.

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