Loss of p53 but not ARF accelerates medulloblastoma in mice heterozygous for patched.
ABSTRACT Brain malignancies represent the most common solid tumors in children, and they are responsible for significant mortality and morbidity. The molecular basis of the most common malignant pediatric brain tumor, medulloblastoma, is poorly understood. Mutations in several genes including the human homologue of the Drosophila segment polarity gene, patched (PTCH), the adenomatous polyposis coli gene (APC), beta-catenin, and p53 have been reported in subsets of hereditary and sporadic medulloblastoma. Inactivation of one Ptc allele in mice results in a 14% incidence of medulloblastoma. Here, we report a dramatic increase in the incidence (>95%) and accelerated development (prior to 12 weeks of age) of medulloblastoma in mice heterozygous for Ptc that lack p53. The acceleration of tumorigenesis in Ptc+/- mice is specific for loss of p53, because no change in tumor incidence was observed in Ptc+/- mice carrying a mutation in APC (Min+/-) or in Ptc+/- mice deficient in p19ARF. Thus, there is a specific interaction between p53 loss and heterozygosity of Ptc that results in medulloblastoma. This may be a consequence of increased genomic instability associated with loss of p53 function that may enhance the rate of acquisition of secondary mutations. Ptc+/- p53-/- mice provide a useful model for investigation of the molecular bases of medulloblastoma and for evaluation of the efficacy of therapeutic intervention strategies in a spontaneously arising endogenous brain tumor.
Article: Microscopic Delineation of Medulloblastoma Margins in a Transgenic Mouse Model Using a Topically Applied VEGFR-1 Probe[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The unambiguous demarcation of tumor margins is critical at the final stages in the surgical treatment of brain tumors because patient outcomes have been shown to correlate with the extent of resection. Real-time high-resolution imaging with the aid of a tumor-targeting fluorescent contrast agent has the potential to enable intraoperative differentiation of tumor versus normal tissues with accuracy approaching the current gold standard of histopathology. In this study, a monoclonal antibody targeting the vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 1 (VEGFR-1) was conjugated to fluorophores and evaluated as a tumor contrast agent in a transgenic mouse model of medulloblastoma. The probe was administered topically, and its efficacy as an imaging agent was evaluated in vitro using flow cytometry, as well as ex vivo on fixed and fresh tissues through immunohistochemistry and dual-axis confocal microscopy, respectively. Results show a preferential binding to tumor versus normal tissue, suggesting that a topically applied VEGFR-1 probe can potentially be used with real-time intraoperative optical sectioning microscopy to guide brain tumor resections.Translational Oncology. 12/2012; 5(6):408-414.
Article: Small molecule inhibition of GDC-0449 refractory smoothened mutants and downstream mechanisms of drug resistance.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Inappropriate Hedgehog (Hh) signaling has been directly linked to medulloblastoma (MB), a common malignant brain tumor in children. GDC-0449 is an Hh pathway inhibitor (HPI) currently under clinical investigation as an anticancer agent. Treatment of a MB patient with GDC-0449 initially regressed tumors, but this individual ultimately relapsed with a D473H resistance mutation in Smoothened (SMO), the molecular target of GDC-0449. To explore the role of the mutated aspartic acid residue in SMO function, we substituted D473 with every amino acid and found that all functional mutants were resistant to GDC-0449, with positively charged residues conferring potential oncogenic properties. Alanine scan mutagenesis of SMO further identified E518 as a novel prospective mutation site for GDC-0449 resistance. To overcome this form of acquired resistance, we screened a panel of chemically diverse HPIs and identified several antagonists with potent in vitro activity against these GDC-0449-resistant SMO mutants. The bis-amide compound 5 was of particular interest, as it was able to inhibit tumor growth mediated by drug resistant SMO in a murine allograft model of MB. However, focal amplifications of the Hh pathway transcription factor Gli2 and the Hh target gene cyclin D1 (Ccnd1) were observed in two additional resistant models, indicating that resistance may also occur downstream of SMO. Importantly, these HPI resistant MB allografts retained their sensitivity to PI3K inhibition, presenting additional opportunities for the treatment of such tumors.Cancer Research 01/2011; 71(2):435-44. · 7.86 Impact Factor
Article: Medulloblastoma: clinicopathological correlates of SHH, WNT, and non-SHH/WNT molecular subgroups[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Medulloblastoma is heterogeneous, being characterized by molecular subgroups that demonstrate distinct gene expression profiles. Activation of the WNT or SHH signaling pathway characterizes two of these molecular subgroups, the former associated with low-risk disease and the latter potentially targeted by novel SHH pathway inhibitors. This manuscript reports the validation of a novel diagnostic immunohistochemical method to distinguish SHH, WNT, and non-SHH/WNT tumors and details their associations with clinical, pathological and cytogenetic variables. A cohort (n=235) of medulloblastomas from patients aged 0.4–52years was studied for expression of four immunohistochemical markers: GAB1, β-catenin, filamin A, and YAP1. Immunoreactivity (IR) for GAB1 characterizes only SHH tumors and nuclear IR for β-catenin only WNT tumors. IRs for filamin A and YAP1 identify SHH and WNT tumors. SHH, WNT, and non-SHH/WNT tumors contributed 31, 14, and 55% to the series. All desmoplastic/nodular (D/N) medulloblastomas were SHH tumors, while most WNT tumors (94%) had a classic phenotype. Monosomy 6 was strongly associated with WNT tumors, while PTCH1 loss occurred almost exclusively among SHH tumors. MYC or MYCN amplification and chromosome 17 imbalance occurred predominantly among non-SHH/WNT tumors. Among patients aged 3–16years and entered onto the SIOP PNET3 trial, outcome was significantly better for children with WNT tumors, when compared to SHH or non-SHH/WNT tumors, which showed similar survival curves. However, high-risk factors (M+ disease, LC/A pathology, MYC amplification) significantly influenced survival in both SHH and non-SHH/WNT groups. We describe a robust method for detecting SHH, WNT, and non-SHH/WNT molecular subgroups in formalin-fixed medulloblastoma samples. In corroborating other studies that indicate the value of combining clinical, pathological, and molecular variables in therapeutic stratification schemes for medulloblastoma, we also provide the first outcome data based on a clinical trial cohort and novel data on how molecular subgroups are distributed across the range of disease.Acta Neuropathologica 04/2012; 121(3):381-396. · 9.32 Impact Factor