The product of this gene belongs to the family of highly homologous synovial sarcoma X (SSX) breakpoint proteins. These proteins may function as transcriptional repressors. They are also capable of eliciting spontaneous humoral and cellular immune responses in cancer patients, and are potentially useful targets in cancer vaccine-based immunotherapy. This gene, and also the SSX2 and SSX4 family members, have been involved in t(X;18)(p11.2;q11.2) translocations that are characteristically found in all synovial sarcomas. This translocation results in the fusion of the synovial sarcoma translocation gene on chromosome 18 to one of the SSX genes on chromosome X. The encoded hybrid proteins are likely responsible for transforming activity. Alternative splicing of this gene results in multiple transcript variants. A related pseudogene has been identified on chromosome X. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2013]
t(X;18)(p11.2;q11.2) SS18-SSX1 in Synovial Sarcoma A SYT-SSX fusion gene resulting from the chromosomal translocation t(X;18)(p11;q11) is characteristic nearly all synovial sarcomas. This translocation fuses the SS18 (SYT) gene from chromosome 18 to one of three homologous genes at Xp11: SSX1, SSX2 or SSX4.
Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).
Atlas of Genetics and Cytogenetics in Oncology and Haematology
SSX1 OMIM, Johns Hopkin University Referenced article focusing on the relationship between phenotype and genotype.
SSX1 International Cancer Genome Consortium. Summary of gene and mutations by cancer type from ICGC
SSX1 Cancer Genome Anatomy Project, NCI Gene Summary
SSX1 COSMIC, Sanger Institute Somatic mutation information and related details
SSX1 GEO Profiles, NCBI Search the gene expression profiles from curated DataSets in the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) repository.
Latest Publications: SSX1 (cancer-related)
Nicola M, Onorati M, Bertola G, et al. Primary thyroid biphasic synovial sarcoma and synchronous papillary carcinoma: report of a remarkable case. Pathologica. 2018; 110(2):106-110 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial Sarcoma (SS) is the fourth most common soft tissue sarcoma, characterized by translocation t(X;18) (p11.2;q11.2). Although its histological features have been extensively described, this entity is characterized by a wide morphological spectrum so that the recognition can be very challenging at atypical anatomical localization, like the thyroid. We describe a case of a 42-ys-old female patient complaining a cervical swelling due to left intrathyroid nodule, measuring 35 mm in its greatest dimension. A Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology (FNAC) was performed and diagnosis of indeterminate neoplastic lesion, indefinite whether primary or metastatic, was formulated. After complete thyroidectomy, the histological picture of the nodule was characterized by a dual cellular population: several glandular structures composed by columnar cells with clear cytoplasm were embedded in a highly cellular stroma composed of spindle-shaped elements. Immunohistochemistry and molecular biology confirmed the morphological suspicion of SS identifying the fusion transcript SYT-SSX1 and thus ruling out several differential diagnoses which include more common thyroid malignancies. Moreover a synchronous papillary microcarcinoma was detected in the controlateral lobe. This case is noteworthy since it describes the synchronous presence in the thyroid of two completely different malignancies, the first one belonging to the soft tissue neoplasm category and the other one originating from the thyroid follicular epithelium.
Mihály D, Nagy N, Papp G, et al. Release of circulating tumor cells and cell-free nucleic acids is an infrequent event in synovial sarcoma: liquid biopsy analysis of 15 patients diagnosed with synovial sarcoma. Diagn Pathol. 2018; 13(1):81 [PubMed] Free Access to Full ArticleRelated Publications
BACKGROUND: Synovial sarcoma is a rare soft tissue tumor which contains the unique SS18-SSX1, SS18-SSX2 - or, rarely, SS18-SSX4 - fusion transcripts. It is well known that some soft tissue tumors, like Ewing sarcomas and myxoid liposarcomas, can spread via the blood with free circulating tumor cells (CTC); this can be detected by several sensitive molecular biology methods. Here we report a study of fifteen synovial sarcoma patients with varied clinical backgrounds. METHOD: After blood withdrawal and nucleic acid isolation, we attempted to detect the SS18-SSX fusion genes from circulating tumor cells or cell-free nucleic acids with nested PCR and droplet digital PCR. RESULTS: SS18-SSX2 fusion transcript was identified in a small copy number with droplet digital PCR in one case. Nested PCR could not detect any of the fusion transcripts in the examined 15 synovial sarcoma cases. CONCLUSIONS: Heretofore two case reports could detect CTCs in synovial sarcoma - in the first paper, the patient was diagnosed with poorly differentiated type while the other had a rare primary gastric synovial sarcoma. However, until now, no other studies have detected CTCs in the peripheral blood of synovial sarcoma patients. Based on our findings, we can conclude that detection of the chimeric SS18-SSX fusion gene after surgical excision and/or chemotherapy/radiotherapy is a rare circumstance and hence in itself is not sufficient for monitoring the tumor recurrence. Therefore, monitoring of other possible biomarkers - for example synovial sarcoma specific miRNAs - is recommended.
Natarajan V, Ramanathan P, Gopisetty G, et al. In silico and in vitro screening of small molecule Inhibitors against SYT-SSX1 fusion protein in synovial sarcoma. Comput Biol Chem. 2018; 77:36-43 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma (SS) is characterized by a tumour specific chromosomal translocation t(X;18) (p11;q11) which results in the formation of SYT-SSX1 fusion protein. This fusion protein represents a clear therapeutic target and molecules specifically targeting SYT-SSX1 fusion protein are currently not available. In this study, SYT-SSX1 fusion protein sequence was retrieved from Uniprot and 3D structure was generated using I-TASSER modeling program. A structure based computational screening approach has been employed using Glide docking software to identify potential SYT-SSX1 small molecule inhibitors that bind to the junction region of the fusion protein. The obtained inhibitors were further filtered based on the docking score and ADME/T properties. Ten best fit compounds were chosen for in vitro studies. The anti-proliferative activities of these 10 compounds were screened in Yamato, ASKA (carries SYT-SSX1 fusion protein) and other sarcoma cell lines such as A673, 143B to understand the specificity of inhibition of the chosen compounds. The in vitro activity was compared against HEK293 cell lines. The compound 5-fluoro-3-(1-phenyl-1H-tetraazol-5-yl)-1H-indole (FPTI) was found to be selectively cytotoxic in synovial sarcoma cell lines (Yamato and ASKA) and this compound also showed insignificant anti proliferative activity on other cell lines. Further, target gene expression study confirmed that FPTI treatment down-regulated SYT-SSX1 and modulated its downstream target genes. Cell cycle analysis revealed the involvement of an apoptotic mechanism of cell death. Further experimental validations may elucidate the therapeutic potentials of FPTI against SYT-SSX1 fusion protein.
MiR-206 is a remarkable miRNA because it functions as a suppressor miRNA in rhabdomyosarcoma while at the same time, as previously showed, it can act as an oncomiRNA in SMARCB1 immunonegative soft tissue sarcomas. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of miR-206 on its several target genes in various human tumorous and normal cell lines. In the current work, we created miR-206-overexpressing cell lines (HT-1080, Caco2, iASC, and SS-iASC) using permanent transfection. mRNA expression of the target genes of miR-206 (SMARCB1, ACTL6A, CCND1, POLA1, NOTCH3, MET, and G6PD) and SMARCB1 protein expression were examined with quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, immunoblotting, immunocytochemistry, and flow cytometry. MiRNA inhibition was used to validate our results. We found a diverse silencing effect of miR-206 on its target genes. While an overall tendency of downregulation was noted, expression profiles of individual cell lines showed large variability. Only CCND1 and MET were consistently downregulated. MiR-206 had an antiproliferative effect on a normal human fibroblast cell line. A strong silencing effect of SMARCB1 in miR-206 transfected SS-iASC was most likely caused by the synergic influence of the SS18-SSX1 fusion protein and miR-206. In the same cell line, a moderate decrease of SMARCB1 protein expression could be observed with immunocytochemistry and flow cytometry. In the most comprehensive analysis of miR-206 effects so far, a modest but significant downregulation of miR-206 targets on the mRNA level was confirmed across all cell lines. However, the variability of the effect shows that the action of this miRNA is largely cell context-dependent. Our results also support the conception that the oncomiR effect of miR-206 on SMARCB1 plays an important but not exclusive role in SMARCB1 immunonegative soft tissue sarcomas so it can be considered important in planning the targeted therapy of these tumors in the future. Impact statement Mir-206 is a very unique microRNA because it can act as a suppressor miRNA or as an oncomiRNA depending on the tumor tissue. In SMARCB1 negative soft tissue sarcomas miR-206 is overexpressed, so thus in epithelioid and synovial sarcomas it functions as an oncomiRNA. MiR-206 has diverse silencing effects on its target genes. We found that the action of miR-206 is largely cell context dependent. The oncomiR role of miR-206 is crucial but not exclusive in SMARCB1 negative soft tissue sarcomas and miR-206 has an antiproliferative effect on a normal human fibroblast cell line. Expressions of miR-206 targets observed in tumors can only be reproduced in the corresponding tumorous cell lines. This is the first study which examined the permanent effect of miR-206 on its target genes in normal, tumor, and genetically engineered cell lines.
Panigrahi MK, Pradhan G, Sahoo N, et al. Primary pulmonary synovial sarcoma: A reappraisal. J Cancer Res Ther. 2018 Apr-Jun; 14(3):481-489 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma (SS) is a malignant mesenchymal tumor with variable epithelial differentiation that affects mostly young adults and can arise at any anatomic site. Primary intrathoracic SS is very rare accounting for <0.5% of all lung tumors. Most commonly, it arises from the lung followed by pleura and mediastinum. Primary pulmonary SS (PPSS) affects both sexes equally with no preference for any hemithorax. The morphology, immunostaining properties, cytogenetic features, and management strategy of PPSS are similar to that of soft tissue SS. Histologically, there are two main types of SS - monophasic and biphasic with a feature of poor differentiation seen in both types. Most patients present with large intrathoracic masses with or without ipsilateral pleural effusion. Bone invasion or mediastinal adenopathy is very rare. SS is characterized by a specific chromosomal translocation producing SS18-SSX fusion gene in more than 90% of cases. Identification of this fusion gene remains the gold standard for the diagnosis in the presence of consistent histology and immunophenotype. Multimodality treatment including wide excision, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy is the mainstay of therapy. SS is relatively chemosensitive, and ifosfamide-based regimen showed improved survival in metastatic disease. Generally, SS is considered as high-grade tumors with a poor prognosis. Novel therapies targeted at fusion oncogene, SS18-SSX-derived peptide vaccine, epidermal growth factor receptor, and vascular endothelial growth factor are the future hope in SS. We describe a prototype case and present an elaborate review on primary SS of lung.
McBride MJ, Pulice JL, Beird HC, et al. The SS18-SSX Fusion Oncoprotein Hijacks BAF Complex Targeting and Function to Drive Synovial Sarcoma. Cancer Cell. 2018; 33(6):1128-1141.e7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma (SS) is defined by the hallmark SS18-SSX fusion oncoprotein, which renders BAF complexes aberrant in two manners: gain of SSX to the SS18 subunit and concomitant loss of BAF47 subunit assembly. Here we demonstrate that SS18-SSX globally hijacks BAF complexes on chromatin to activate an SS transcriptional signature that we define using primary tumors and cell lines. Specifically, SS18-SSX retargets BAF complexes from enhancers to broad polycomb domains to oppose PRC2-mediated repression and activate bivalent genes. Upon suppression of SS18-SSX, reassembly of BAF47 restores enhancer activation, but is not required for proliferative arrest. These results establish a global hijacking mechanism for SS18-SSX on chromatin, and define the distinct contributions of two concurrent BAF complex perturbations.
Synovial sarcoma is an aggressive cancer invariably associated with a chromosomal translocation involving genes encoding the SWI-SNF complex component SS18 and an SSX (SSX1 or SSX2) transcriptional repressor. Using functional genomics, we identify KDM2B, a histone demethylase and component of a non-canonical polycomb repressive complex 1 (PRC1.1), as selectively required for sustaining synovial sarcoma cell transformation. SS18-SSX1 physically interacts with PRC1.1 and co-associates with SWI/SNF and KDM2B complexes on unmethylated CpG islands. Via KDM2B, SS18-SSX1 binds and aberrantly activates expression of developmentally regulated genes otherwise targets of polycomb-mediated repression, which is restored upon KDM2B depletion, leading to irreversible mesenchymal differentiation. Thus, SS18-SSX1 deregulates developmental programs to drive transformation by hijacking a transcriptional repressive complex to aberrantly activate gene expression.
Kito F, Oyama R, Takai Y, et al. Establishment and characterization of the NCC-SS1-C1 synovial sarcoma cell line. Hum Cell. 2018; 31(2):167-174 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma is an aggressive mesenchymal malignancy characterized by unique gene fusions. Tissue culture cells are essential tools for further understanding tumorigenesis and anti-cancer drug development; however, only a limited number of well-characterized synovial sarcoma cell lines exist. Thus, the objective of this study was to establish a patient-derived synovial sarcoma cell line. We established a synovial sarcoma cell line from tumor tissue isolated from a 72-year-old female patient. Prepared cells were analyzed for the presence of gene fusions by fluorescence in situ hybridization, RT-PCR, and karyotyping. In addition, the resulting cell line was characterized by viability, short tandem repeat, colony and spheroid formation, and invasion analyses. Differences in gene enrichment between the primary tumor and cell line were examined by mass spectrometric protein expression profiling and KEGG pathway analysis. Our analyses revealed that the primary tumor and NCC-SS1-C1 cell line harbored the SS18-SSX1 fusion gene typical of synovial sarcoma and similar proteomics profiles. In vitro analyses also confirmed that the established cell line harbored invasive, colony-forming, and spheroid-forming potentials. Moreover, drug screening with chemotherapeutic agents and tyrosine kinase inhibitors revealed that doxorubicin, a subset of tyrosine kinase inhibitors, and several molecular targeting drugs markedly decreased NCC-SS1-C1 cell viability. Results from the present study support that the NCC-SS1-C1 cell line will be an effective tool for sarcoma research.
RATIONALE: When a gastric spindle cell tumor is observed, the possibility of synovial carcinoma, besides common mesenchymal tumor, should also be considered. PRESENTING CONCERNS OF THE PATIENT: The patient is a 51-year-old American woman who underwent medical check-up at a general hospital. Upper endoscopy showed a 2-cm sized mass covered with intact mucosa, and a central depression located on the posterior wall of the mid body. Biopsy of the mass showed focal atypical cells proliferation in mucosa on hematoxylin & eosin (H&E) staining. Endoscopic ultrasound showed a 17-mm homogenously hypoechoic mass within the submucosal layer. INTERVENTIONS: After diagnostic endoscopic submucosal dissection was performed, H&E and immunohistochemical staining showed synovial sarcoma (SS). To confirm the diagnosis, reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction was performed, revealing a chimeric transcript of the SYT-SSX1 fusion gene. The diagnosis of primary gastric SS was confirmed because no evidence of possible primary lesions or metastatic lesions was observed. Therefore, the patient underwent distal gastrectomy. OUTCOMES: After surgery, the surgical specimen demonstrated no residual tumor cells. The patient received no adjuvant therapy, and there has been no evidence of local recurrence or distant metastasis for 2 months after the operation. LESSONS: When gastric subepithelial tumor is suspicious, we should also consider gastric SS.
Small supernumerary ring chromosome 6 (sSRC) is a rare chromosomal abnormality characterized by a broad clinical phenotype. The spectrum of this disorder can range from phenotypically normal to severe developmental delay and congenital anomalies. We describe two unrelated patients with small SRCs derived from chromosome 6 with a novel bone phenotype. Both patients presented with a complex bone disorder characterized by severe osteopenia, pathologic fractures, and cyst-like lesions within the bone. Imaging revealed decreased bone mineral density, mutiple multiloculated cysts and cortical thinning. Lesion pathology in both patients demonstrated a bland cyst wall with woven dysplastic appearing bone entrapped within it. In patient 1, array comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) detected a tandem duplication of region 6p12.3 to 6q12 per marker chromosome. Cytogenetic analysis further revealed a complex patient of mosaicism with some cell lines displaying either one or two copies of the marker indicative of both tetrasomy and hexasomy of this region. Patient 2 was mosaic for a sSRC that encompassed a 26.8 Mb gain from 6p21.2 to 6q12. We performed an in-depth clinical analysis of a phenotype not previously observed in sSRC(6) patients and discuss the potential influence of genes located within this region on the skeletal presentation observed.
Synovial sarcoma (SS) is an aggressive soft-tissue malignancy characterized by expression of SS18-SSX fusions, where treatment options are limited. To identify therapeutically actionable genetic dependencies in SS, we performed a series of parallel, high-throughput small interfering RNA (siRNA) screens and compared genetic dependencies in SS tumor cells with those in >130 non-SS tumor cell lines. This approach revealed a reliance of SS tumor cells upon the DNA damage response serine/threonine protein kinase ATR. Clinical ATR inhibitors (ATRi) elicited a synthetic lethal effect in SS tumor cells and impaired growth of SS patient-derived xenografts. Oncogenic SS18-SSX family fusion genes are known to alter the composition of the BAF chromatin-remodeling complex, causing ejection and degradation of wild-type SS18 and the tumor suppressor SMARCB1. Expression of oncogenic SS18-SSX fusion proteins caused profound ATRi sensitivity and a reduction in SS18 and SMARCB1 protein levels, but an SSX18-SSX1 Δ71-78 fusion containing a C-terminal deletion did not. ATRi sensitivity in SS was characterized by an increase in biomarkers of replication fork stress (increased γH2AX, decreased replication fork speed, and increased R-loops), an apoptotic response, and a dependence upon cyclin E expression. Combinations of cisplatin or PARP inhibitors enhanced the antitumor cell effect of ATRi, suggesting that either single-agent ATRi or combination therapy involving ATRi might be further assessed as candidate approaches for SS treatment.
Jiang D, Peng R, Yan X, et al. Synovial sarcoma showing loss of a green signal in SS18 fluorescence in situ hybridization: a clinicopathological and molecular study of 12 cases. Virchows Arch. 2017; 471(6):799-807 [PubMed] Related Publications
The phenomenon of losing a green signal in synovial sarcoma (SS) using the SS18 break-apart probe by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) has been poorly described. In this study, 12 SS with missing a green signal were identified. This series included 7 males and 5 females, aged 17 to 69 years (median, 38.5 years). The tumors involved the extremities (50%), mediastinum (16.7%), hypopharynx (8.3%), neck (8.3%), thyroid (8.3%), and retroperitoneum (8.3%). The tumors were classified as monophasic SS (58.3%) and poorly differentiated SS (41.7%). An anaplastic SS showing features of pleomorphic sarcoma was observed. Immunostaining for TLE1, BCL2, CD99, epithelial membrane antigen, cytokeratin (AE1/AE3), cytokeratin 7, S-100 protein, and CD34 was consistent with typical SS. In FISH, all the tumors showed the pattern of 1 to 3 fused signal(s) with 1 to 3 red signal(s), without corresponding a green signal. The fusion transcripts included SS18-SSX1 (8/10, 80%) and SS18-SSX2 (2/10, 20%) fusions. Median and 5-year overall survival were 19.1 months and 43.6%, respectively. In conclusion, we reported a series of SS losing a green signal in the SS18 FISH assay. We propose that this variant FISH pattern should be interpreted as a peculiar unbalanced rearrangement of the SS18 gene and subsequent SS18-SSX fusion test should be recommended. The cases in this study seem to show some unusual clinicopathological features, including unusual locations, higher proportions of poorly differentiated SS, and aggressive clinical course. However, whether this variant FISH pattern is associated with peculiar clinicopathologic features awaits larger series.
Olofson AM, Linos K Primary Intraprostatic Synovial Sarcoma. Arch Pathol Lab Med. 2017; 141(2):301-304 [PubMed] Related Publications
Primary intraprostatic synovial sarcoma is a rare presentation of an otherwise well-studied disease, and it is one of the few primary sarcomas to occur in the prostate. Ancillary diagnostic techniques including immunohistochemistry and molecular genetics are useful to establish a definitive diagnosis. Despite its unorthodox location, it shares histologic and molecular genetic characteristics with tumors found elsewhere in the body. Most notably, the chromosomal translocation t(X;18)(p11;q11) encodes a chimeric transcription-activating protein, SS18-SSX, which has been identified as the primary driver mutation. The SS18-SSX fusion gene provides a consistent and dependable means of establishing a definitive diagnosis via reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction or fluorescence in situ hybridization. Recent studies have continued to provide insight into the oncogenesis of this disease. The goal of this review is to elaborate on the clinicopathologic characteristics and underline those techniques that best facilitate the diagnosis of primary intraprostatic synovial sarcoma.
The SS18-SSX1 fusion gene has been shown to play important roles in the development of synovial sarcoma (SS), but the underlying molecular mechanisms and its downstream target genes are still not clear. Here SHC SH2-domain binding protein 1 (SHCBP1) was identified and validated to be a novel downstream target gene of SS18-SSX1 by using microarray assay, quantitative real-time (qPCR) and western blot. Expression of SHCBP1 was firstly confirmed in SS cell line and SS tissues. The effects of SHCBP1 overexpression or knockdown on SS cell proliferation and tumorigenicity were then studied by cell proliferation, DNA replication, colony formation, flow cytometric assays, and its in vivo tumorigenesis was determined in the nude mice. Meanwhile, the related signaling pathways of SHCBP1 were also examined in SS cells. The results indicated that SHCBP1 was significantly increased in SS cells and SS tissues compared with adjacent noncancerous tissues. The expression of SHCBP1 was demonstrated to be positively correlated with the SS18-SSX1 level. Overexpression and ablation of SHCBP1 promoted and inhibited, respectively, the proliferation and tumorigenicity of SS cells in vitro. SHCBP1 knockdown also significantly inhibited SS cell growth in nude mice, and lowered the MAPK/ERK and PI3K/AKT/mTOR signaling pathways and cyclin D1 expression. Our findings disclose that SHCBP1 is a novel downstream target gene of SS18-SSX1, and demonstrate that the oncogene SS18-SSX1 promotes tumorigenesis by increasing the expression of SHCBP1, which normally acts as a tumor promoting factor.
BACKGROUND: Synovial sarcoma (SS) is a soft tissue sarcoma of unknown histogenesis. Most metastatic or unresectable cases are incurable. Novel antitumor agents and precise prognostication are needed for SS patients. The protein forkhead box M1 (FOXM1), which belongs to the FOX family of transcription factors, is considered to be an independent predictor of poor survival in many cancers and sarcomas, but the prognostic implications and oncogenic roles of FOXM1 in SS are poorly understood. Here we examined the correlation between FOXM1 expression and clinicopathologic and prognostic factors, and we investigated the efficacy of FOXM1 target therapy in SS cases. METHODS: Immunohistochemical study of 106 tumor specimens was conducted to evaluate their immunohistochemical expression of FOXM1. An in vitro study examined the antitumor effect of the FOXM1 inhibitor thiostrepton and small interference RNA (siRNA) on two SS cell lines. We also assessed the efficacy of the combined use of doxorubicin (DOX) and thiostrepton. RESULTS: Univariate and multivariate analyses revealed that FOXM1 expression was associated with poor prognosis in SS. The cDNA microarray analysis using clinical samples revealed that the expression of cell cycle-associated genes was correlated with FOXM1 expression. FOXM1 inhibition by thiostrepton showed significant antitumor activity on the SS cell lines in vitro. FOXM1 interruption by siRNA increased the chemosensitivity for DOX in both SS cell lines. CONCLUSION: FOXM1 expression is a novel biomarker, and its inhibition is a potential treatment option for SS.
The catalytic activities of covalent and ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling are central to regulating the conformational state of chromatin and the resultant transcriptional output. The enzymes that catalyze these activities are often contained within multiprotein complexes in nature. Two such multiprotein complexes, the polycomb repressive complex 2 (PRC2) methyltransferase and the SWItch/Sucrose Non-Fermentable (SWI/SNF) chromatin remodeler have been reported to act in opposition to each other during development and homeostasis. An imbalance in their activities induced by mutations/deletions in complex members (e.g. SMARCB1) has been suggested to be a pathogenic mechanism in certain human cancers. Here we show that preclinical models of synovial sarcoma-a cancer characterized by functional SMARCB1 loss via its displacement from the SWI/SNF complex through the pathognomonic SS18-SSX fusion protein-display sensitivity to pharmacologic inhibition of EZH2, the catalytic subunit of PRC2. Treatment with tazemetostat, a clinical-stage, selective and orally bioavailable small-molecule inhibitor of EZH2 enzymatic activity reverses a subset of synovial sarcoma gene expression and results in concentration-dependent cell growth inhibition and cell death specifically in SS18-SSX fusion-positive cells in vitro. Treatment of mice bearing either a cell line or two patient-derived xenograft models of synovial sarcoma leads to dose-dependent tumor growth inhibition with correlative inhibition of trimethylation levels of the EZH2-specific substrate, lysine 27 on histone H3. These data demonstrate a dependency of SS18-SSX-positive, SMARCB1-deficient synovial sarcomas on EZH2 enzymatic activity and suggests the potential utility of EZH2-targeted drugs in these genetically defined cancers.
Saigo C, Kito Y, Takeuchi T Immunoreactivity of a Monoclonal Antibody to SS18-SSX Fusion Gene Product in Formalin-fixed Paraffin-embedded Synovial Sarcoma Tissue Section. Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol. 2018; 26(3):206-211 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma is an aggressive sarcoma with specific reciprocal chromosomal translocation of SS18 (also known as SYT) and SSX genes. In the present study, we aimed to detect the SS18-SSX fusion gene product in routinely processed pathologic synovial sarcoma tissue section. Monoclonal antibodies to peptide QRPYGYDQ-IMPKKPA, which covered the fusion region of SS18-SSX, were newly established and subsequently characterized by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, Western-immunoblotting, and immunohistochemical staining. A monoclonal antibody designated BG35, reacted with boundary region of SS18-SSX chimera protein in a specific manner, when C-terminal or neighboring region of QRPYGYDQ-IMPKKPA is structurally exposed. Immunoreactivity of BG35 was localized in nucleus of synovial sarcoma cells, but not in other sarcoma cells, examined. Interestingly, synovial sarcoma cells with epithelial differentiation exhibited much strong BG35 immunoreactivity than synovial sarcoma cells with sarcomatous differentiation. BG35 may be useful for evaluating molecular kinetics of SSX-SS18 gene product in situ.
Background. There is not yet an agreed adjuvant treatment for melanoma patients with American Joint Committee on Cancer stages III B and C. We report administration of an autologous melanoma vaccine to prevent disease recurrence. Patients and Methods. 126 patients received eight doses of irradiated autologous melanoma cells conjugated to dinitrophenyl and mixed with BCG. Delayed type hypersensitivity (DTH) response to unmodified melanoma cells was determined on the vaccine days 5 and 8. Gene expression analysis was performed on 35 tumors from patients with good or poor survival. Results. Median overall survival was 88 months with a 5-year survival of 54%. Patients attaining a strong DTH response had a significantly better (p = 0.0001) 5-year overall survival of 75% compared with 44% in patients without a strong response. Gene expression array linked a 50-gene signature to prognosis, including a cluster of four cancer testis antigens: CTAG2 (NY-ESO-2), MAGEA1, SSX1, and SSX4. Thirty-five patients, who received an autologous vaccine, followed by ipilimumab for progressive disease, had a significantly improved 3-year survival of 46% compared with 19% in nonvaccinated patients treated with ipilimumab alone (p = 0.007). Conclusion. Improved survival in patients attaining a strong DTH and increased response rate with subsequent ipilimumab suggests that the autologous vaccine confers protective immunity.
Qassid O, Ali A, Thway K Synovial Sarcoma With Myoid Differentiation. Int J Surg Pathol. 2016; 24(6):525-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma is a malignant mesenchymal tumor with variable epithelial differentiation, which is defined by the presence of a specific t(X;18)(p11.2;q11.2) chromosomal translocation that generates SS18-SSX fusion oncogenes. Synovial sarcoma typically arises within extremity deep soft tissue (particularly around large joints) of young adults, but has been shown to occur at almost any location. When it arises in more unusual sites, such as the abdomen, it can present a significant diagnostic challenge. We describe a case of intraabdominal monophasic synovial sarcoma that immunohistochemically showed strong expression of smooth muscle actin and calponin but only very scanty cytokeratin, and which showed morphologic and immunohistochemical overlap with other spindle cell neoplasms that can arise at this site, such as gastrointestinal stromal tumor and myofibrosarcoma. As correct diagnosis is of clinical and prognostic importance, surgical pathologists should be aware of the potential for synovial sarcoma to occur at a variety of anatomic sites and of its spectrum of immunoreactivity. Synovial sarcoma should be in the differential diagnosis of spindle cell neoplasms with myoid differentiation that do not fall into any definite tumor category, for which there should be a relatively low threshold for performing fluorescence in situ hybridization or reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction to assess for the specific SS18 gene rearrangement or SS18-SSX fusion transcripts, which remain the diagnostic gold standard.
Synovial sarcomas are aggressive soft-tissue malignancies that express chromosomal translocation-generated fusion genes, SS18-SSX1 or SS18-SSX2 in most cases. Here, we report a mouse sarcoma model expressing SS18-SSX1, complementing our prior model expressing SS18-SSX2. Exome sequencing identified no recurrent secondary mutations in tumors of either genotype. Most of the few mutations identified in single tumors were present in genes that were minimally or not expressed in any of the tumors. Chromosome 6, either entirely or around the fusion gene expression locus, demonstrated a copy number gain in a majority of tumors of both genotypes. Thus, by fusion oncogene coding sequence alone, SS18-SSX1 and SS18-SSX2 can each drive comparable synovial sarcomagenesis, independent from other genetic drivers. SS18-SSX1 and SS18-SSX2 tumor transcriptomes demonstrated very few consistent differences overall. In direct tumorigenesis comparisons, SS18-SSX2 was slightly more sarcomagenic than SS18-SSX1, but equivalent in its generation of biphasic histologic features. Meta-analysis of human synovial sarcoma patient series identified two tumor-gentoype-phenotype correlations that were not modeled by the mice, namely a scarcity of male hosts and biphasic histologic features among SS18-SSX2 tumors. Re-analysis of human SS18-SSX1 and SS18-SSX2 tumor transcriptomes demonstrated very few consistent differences, but highlighted increased native SSX2 expression in SS18-SSX1 tumors. This suggests that the translocated locus may drive genotype-phenotype differences more than the coding sequence of the fusion gene created. Two possible roles for native SSX2 in synovial sarcomagenesis are explored. Thus, even specific partial failures of mouse genetic modeling can be instructive to human tumor biology.
Expression of the SS18/SYT-SSX fusion protein is believed to underlie the pathogenesis of synovial sarcoma (SS). Recent evidence suggests that deregulation of the Wnt pathway may play an important role in SS but the mechanisms whereby SS18-SSX might affect Wnt signaling remain to be elucidated. Here, we show that SS18/SSX tightly regulates the elevated expression of the key Wnt target AXIN2 in primary SS. SS18-SSX is shown to interact with TCF/LEF, TLE and HDAC but not β-catenin in vivo and to induce Wnt target gene expression by forming a complex containing promoter-bound TCF/LEF and HDAC but lacking β-catenin. Our observations provide a tumor-specific mechanistic basis for Wnt target gene induction in SS that can occur in the absence of Wnt ligand stimulation.
Ogino H, Hanibuchi M, Takizawa H, et al. Primary Pulmonary Synovial Sarcoma Showing a Prolonged Survival with Multimodality Therapy. Intern Med. 2016; 55(4):381-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
A 54-year-old man was referred to our hospital due to a mass shadow noted on a chest X-ray. Thoracoscopic lobectomy yielded a diagnosis of primary pulmonary synovial sarcoma according to the histology and SYT-SSX1 gene analyses. Five months after the thoracic surgery, he developed brain metastasis; therefore, we performed resection of the brain metastatic focus followed by radiotherapy. As a local recurrence in the thoracic cavity concurrently emerged, systemic chemotherapy was also administered. These observations indicated that a multidisciplinary approach may be useful against primary pulmonary synovial sarcoma, although there is presently no established therapeutic strategy due to its rarity and highly aggressive nature.
The prevalence and specificity of unique fusion oncogenes are high in a number of soft tissue sarcomas (STSs). The close relationship between fusion genes and clinicopathological features suggests that a correlation may exist between the function of fusion proteins and cellular context of the cell-of-origin of each tumor. However, most STSs are origin-unknown tumors and this issue has not yet been investigated in detail. In the present study, we examined the effects of the cellular context on the function of the synovial sarcoma (SS)-specific fusion protein, SS18-SSX, using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) containing the drug-inducible SS18-SSX gene. We selected the neural crest cell (NCC) lineage for the first trial of this system, induced SS18-SSX at various differentiation stages from PSCs to NCC-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs), and compared its biological effects on each cell type. We found that the expression of FZD10, identified as an SS-specific gene, was induced by SS18-SSX at the PSC and NCC stages, but not at the MSC stage. This stage-specific induction of FZD10 correlated with stage-specific changes in histone marks associated with the FZD10 locus and also with the loss of the BAF47 protein, a member of the SWI/SNF chromatin-remodeling complex. Furthermore, the global gene expression profile of hPSC-derived NCCs was the closest to that of SS cell lines after the induction of SS18-SSX. These results clearly demonstrated that the cellular context is an important factor in the function of SS18-SSX as an epigenetic modifier.
Mikami T, Kurose A, Javed F, Takeda Y Detection of Rare Variant of SS18-SSX1 Fusion Gene and Mutations of Important Cancer-Related Genes in Synovial Sarcoma of the Lip: Gene Analyses of a Case and Literature Review. J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2015; 73(8):1505-15 [PubMed] Related Publications
Synovial sarcoma (SS) accounts for 5 to 10% of soft tissue sarcomas; however, intraoral SS is rare. Histopathologically, SS shows a biphasic pattern with epithelial and spindle cell components or a monophasic pattern with only spindle cells. The precise diagnosis of SS, especially at an unusual site, is often a challenge to pathologists and clinical oncologists, because the differential diagnosis of SS includes a broad range of tumors, such as soft tissue sarcomas and carcinomas. In the present case, the patient was a 50-year-old woman who presented with the chief complaint of swelling and a slowly enlarging mass of the lower lip in the mucolabial fold region. The mass was covered with intact mucosa and intraoral examination showed no malignant findings. The clinical diagnosis was a benign tumor and a probable salivary gland tumor. Macroscopically, the excised mass also indicated a benign tumor; however, histopathologic findings suggested the diagnosis of SS. For definitive diagnosis, genetic analyses were performed with conventional polymerase chain reaction and next-generation sequencing. As a result, a rare variant of the SS18-SSX1 fusion transcript, which could not be identified by routine procedures for genetic diagnosis, was detected. In addition, 8 missense mutations of cancer-related genes were confirmed. Detection of the fusion transcript is widely used in the diagnosis of SS; however, reported cases of transcript variants of each fusion gene type are limited. Reports of mutational analysis of cancer-related genes on SS also are rare. The accumulation of rare transcript variants and the cytogenetic characters of SS are suggested to be necessary for assuming a genetic diagnosis of SS.
UNLABELLED: Oncogenesis in synovial sarcoma is driven by the chromosomal translocation t(X,18; p11,q11), which generates an in-frame fusion of the SWI/SNF subunit SS18 to the C-terminal repression domains of SSX1 or SSX2. Proteomic studies have identified an integral role of SS18-SSX in the SWI/SNF complex, and provide new evidence for mistargeting of polycomb repression in synovial sarcoma. Two recent in vivo studies are highlighted, providing additional support for the importance of WNT signaling in synovial sarcoma: One used a conditional mouse model in which knockout of β-catenin prevents tumor formation, and the other used a small-molecule inhibitor of β-catenin in xenograft models. SIGNIFICANCE: Synovial sarcoma appears to arise from still poorly characterized immature mesenchymal progenitor cells through the action of its primary oncogenic driver, the SS18-SSX fusion gene, which encodes a multifaceted disruptor of epigenetic control. The effects of SS18-SSX on polycomb-mediated gene repression and SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling have recently come into focus and may offer new insights into the basic function of these processes. A central role for deregulation of WNT-β-catenin signaling in synovial sarcoma has also been strengthened by recent in vivo studies. These new insights into the the biology of synovial sarcoma are guiding novel preclinical and clinical studies in this aggressive cancer.
BACKGROUND: The identification of fusion genes such as SYT-SSX1/SSX2, PAX3-FOXO1, TPM3/TPM4-ALK and EWS-FLI1 in human sarcomas has provided important insight into the diagnosis and targeted therapy of sarcomas. No recurrent fusion has been reported in human osteosarcoma. METHODS: Transcriptome sequencing was used to characterize the gene fusions and mutations in 11 human osteosarcomas. RESULTS: Nine of 11 samples were found to harbor genetic inactivating alterations in the TP53 pathway. Two recurrent fusion genes associated with the 12q locus, LRP1-SNRNP25 and KCNMB4-CCND3, were identified and validated by RT-PCR, Sanger sequencing and fluorescence in situ hybridization, and were found to be osteosarcoma specific in a validation cohort of 240 other sarcomas. Expression of LRP1-SNRNP25 fusion gene promoted SAOS-2 osteosarcoma cell migration and invasion. Expression of KCNMB4-CCND3 fusion gene promoted SAOS-2 cell migration. CONCLUSIONS: Our study represents the first whole transcriptome analysis of untreated human osteosarcoma. Our discovery of two osteosarcoma specific fusion genes associated with osteosarcoma cellular motility highlights the heterogeneity of osteosarcoma and provides opportunities for new treatment modalities.
MicroRNA (miRNA) can function as tumor suppressors or oncogenes, and also as potential specific cancer biomarkers; however, there are few published studies on miRNA in synovial sarcomas, and their function remains unclear. We transfected the OncomiR miRNA Precursor Virus Library into synovial sarcoma Fuji cells followed by a colony formation assay to identify miRNAs to confer an aggressive tumorigenicity, and identified miR-17-5p from the large colonies. MiR-17 was found to be induced by a chimeric oncoprotein SS18-SSX specific for synovial sarcoma, and all examined cases of human synovial sarcoma expressed miR-17, even at high levels in several cases. Overexpression of miR-17 in synovial sarcoma cells, Fuji and HS-SYII, increased colony forming ability in addition to cell growth, but not cell motility and invasion. Tumor volume formed in mice in vivo was significantly increased by miR-17 overexpression with a marked increase of MIB-1 index. According to PicTar and Miranda algorithms, which predicted CDKN1A (p21) as a putative target of miR-17, a luciferase assay was performed and revealed that miR-17 directly targets the 3'-UTR of p21 mRNA. Indeed, p21 protein level was remarkably decreased by miR-17 overexpression in a p53-independent manner. It is noteworthy that miR-17 succeeded in suppressing doxorubicin-evoked higher expression of p21 and conferred the drug resistance. Meanwhile, introduction of anti-miR-17 in Fuji and HS-SYII cells significantly decreased cell growth, consistent with rescued expression of p21. Taken together, miR-17 promotes the tumor growth of synovial sarcomas by post-transcriptional suppression of p21, which may be amenable to innovative therapeutic targeting in synovial sarcoma.
Wakamatsu T, Naka N, Sasagawa S, et al. Deflection of vascular endothelial growth factor action by SS18-SSX and composite vascular endothelial growth factor- and chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 4-targeted therapy in synovial sarcoma. Cancer Sci. 2014; 105(9):1124-34 [PubMed] Free Access to Full ArticleRelated Publications
Synovial sarcoma (SS) is a malignant soft-tissue tumor characterized by the recurrent chromosomal translocation SS18-SSX. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-targeting anti-angiogenic therapy has been approved for soft-tissue sarcoma, including SS; however, the mechanism underlying the VEGF signal for sarcomagenesis in SS is unclear. Here, we show that SS18-SSX directs the VEGF signal outcome to cellular growth from differentiation. Synovial sarcoma cells secrete large amounts of VEGF under spheroid culture conditions in autocrine fashion. SS18-SSX knockdown altered the VEGF signaling outcome, from proliferation to tubular differentiation, without affecting VEGF secretion, suggesting that VEGF signaling promoted cell growth in the presence of SS18-SSX. Thus, VEGF inhibitors blocked both host angiogenesis and spheroid growth. Simultaneous treatment with VEGF and chemokine (C-X-C motif) (CXC) ligand 12 and CXC receptor 4 inhibitors and/or ifosfamide effectively suppressed tumor growth both in vitro and in vivo. SS18-SSX directs the VEGF signal outcome from endothelial differentiation to spheroid growth, and VEGF and CXC receptor 4 are critical therapeutic targets for SS.
de Souza RR, Oliveira ID, del Giúdice Paniago M, et al. Investigation of IGF2, Hedgehog and fusion gene expression profiles in pediatric sarcomas. Growth Horm IGF Res. 2014; 24(4):130-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
UNLABELLED: The childhood sarcomas are malignant tumors with high mortality rates. They are divided into two genetic categories: a category without distinct pattern karyotypic changes and the other category showing unique translocations that originate gene rearrangements. This category includes rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS), Ewing's sarcoma (ES) and synovial sarcoma (SS). Diverse studies have related development genes, such as; IGF2, IHH, PTCH1 and GLI1 and sarcomatogenesis. OBJECTIVE: To characterize the RMS, ES and SS rearrangements, we quantify the expression of IGF2 IHH, PTCH1 and GLI1 genes and correlate molecular data with clinical parameters of patients. DESIGN: We analyzed 29 RMS, 10 SS and 60 ES tumor samples by RT-PCR (polymerase chain reaction-reverse transcription) and qPCR (quantitative PCR). RESULTS: Among the samples of ARMS, 50% had rearrangements of PAX3/7-FOXO1, 60% of ES samples were EWS-FLI1 positive and 90% of SS samples were positive for SS18-SSX1/2. In relation to the control reference samples (QPCR Human Reference Total RNA-Stratagene, Human Skeletal Muscle Total RNA-Ambion, Universal RNA Human Normal Tissues-Ambion), RMS samples showed a high IGF2 gene expression (p<0.0001). Moreover, ES samples showed a low IGF2 gene expression (p<0.0001) and high IHH (p<0.0001), PTCH1 (p=0.0173) and GLI1 (p=0.0113) gene expressions. CONCLUSIONS: The molecular characterization of IGF and Hedgehog pathway in these pediatric sarcomas may collaborate to enable a better understanding of the biological behavior of these neoplasms.