1] Newcastle Cancer Centre, Northern Institute for Cancer Research, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK  Department of Paediatric and Adolescent Haematology and Oncology, Great North Children's Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.
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Ewing sarcoma and osteosarcoma represent the two most common primary bone tumours in childhood and adolescence, with bone metastases being the most adverse prognostic factor. In prostate cancer, osseous metastasis poses a major clinical challenge. We developed a preclinical orthotopic model of Ewing sarcoma, reflecting the biology of the tumour-bone interactions in human disease and allowing in vivo monitoring of disease progression, and compared this with models of osteosarcoma and prostate carcinoma. Human tumour cell lines were transplanted into non-obese diabetic/severe combined immunodeficient (NSG) and Rag2(-/-/)γc(-/-) mice by intrafemoral injection. For Ewing sarcoma, minimal cell numbers (1000-5000) injected in small volumes were able to induce orthotopic tumour growth. Tumour progression was studied using positron emission tomography, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging and bioluminescent imaging. Tumours and their interactions with bones were examined by histology. Each tumour induced bone destruction and outgrowth of extramedullary tumour masses, together with characteristic changes in bone that were well visualised by computed tomography, which correlated with post-mortem histology. Ewing sarcoma and, to a lesser extent, osteosarcoma cells induced prominent reactive new bone formation. Osteosarcoma cells produced osteoid and mineralised "malignant" bone within the tumour mass itself. Injection of prostate carcinoma cells led to osteoclast-driven osteolytic lesions. Bioluminescent imaging of Ewing sarcoma xenografts allowed easy and rapid monitoring of tumour growth and detection of tumour dissemination to lungs, liver and bone. Magnetic resonance imaging proved useful for monitoring soft tissue tumour growth and volume. Positron emission tomography proved to be of limited use in this model. Overall, we have developed an orthotopic in vivo model for Ewing sarcoma and other primary and secondary human bone malignancies, which resemble the human disease. We have shown the utility of small animal bioimaging for tracking disease progression, making this model a useful assay for preclinical drug testing.
PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(1):e85128. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0085128 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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Despite advances in allogeneic stem cell transplantation, BCR-ABL positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) remains a high-risk disease, necessitating the development of novel treatment strategies. As the known oncomir, mir-17~92, is regulated by BCR-ABL fusion in chronic myeloid leukaemia, we investigated its role in BCR-ABL translocated ALL. miR-17~92-encoded miRNAs were significantly less abundant in BCR-ABL-positive as compared to -negative ALL-cells and over-expression of miR-17~19b triggered apoptosis in a BCR-ABL-dependent manner. Stable isotope labeling of amino acids in culture (SILAC) followed by liquid chromatography and mass spectroscopy (LC-MS) identified several apoptosis-related proteins including Bcl2 as potential targets of miR-17~19b. We validated Bcl2 as a direct target of this miRNA cluster in mice and humans, and, similar to miR-17~19b over-expression, Bcl2 specific RNAi strongly induced apoptosis in BCR-ABL-positive cells. Furthermore, BCR-ABL- positive human ALL-cell lines were more sensitive to pharmacological BCL2-inhibition than negative ones. Finally, in a xenograft model using patient-derived leukaemic blasts, real time, in vivo imaging confirmed pharmacological inhibition of BCL2 as a new therapeutic strategy in BCR-ABL-positive ALL. These data demonstrate the role of miR-17~92 in regulation of apoptosis, and identify BCL2 as a therapeutic target of particular relevance in BCR-ABL positive ALL.Leukemia accepted article preview online, 27 November 2013. doi:10.1038/leu.2013.361.
Leukemia: official journal of the Leukemia Society of America, Leukemia Research Fund, U.K 11/2013; 28(3). DOI:10.1038/leu.2013.361 · 9.38 Impact Factor
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