Bacterial artificial chromosome array comparative genomic hybridization analysis of hepatoblastomas reveals a deletion in the 14q12 locus in 12 of 16 cases. A high frequency of copy gain is seen on chromosomes 1q, 2, 5p, 8, and 20. Frequent deletions are also seen at 6q, 17q, and 1p with less frequent gains on 4p, 6p, and 19p. 14q12 deletion locus analyses using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction reveals copy number gain/amplification in the region immediately telomeric to the deleted locus, including copy number gain (2- to 4-fold) of FOXG1 in 13 out of 16 tumors. This is associated with up-regulation (approximately 87-fold) of FOXG1 gene transcripts and increased protein expression. Immunostaining reveals an inverse relationship between FOXG1 expression and p21cip1 expression in all histologic subtypes. However, FOXG1 transcript levels were significantly higher (approximately 75-fold) in tumors with embryonal and small cell components when compared with pure fetal hepatoblastomas. FOXG1 has been implicated in the repression of transforming growth factor beta-induced expression of p21cip1 and cytostasis. Our findings are consistent with such a role for FOXG1. We propose that FOXG1 overexpression may contribute to the maintenance of the undifferentiated state in hepatoblastomas and could be a potential target for molecular therapeutics. This is the first report of a possible role for FOXG1 in hepatoblastoma and pediatric neoplasia.
"The FOXG1 is crucial for normal brain development  and loss-of-function mutations in FOXG1 cause an atypical form of Rett syndrome . On the other hand, overexpression of FOXG1 is implicated in cancer development , . In summary, the motif analyses suggest that the HVR locus might function as an enhancer but we have not unambiguously identified its protein binding partners. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although historically considered as junk-DNA, tandemly repeated sequence motifs can affect human phenotype. For example, variable number tandem repeats (VNTR) with embedded enhancers have been shown to regulate gene transcription. The post-zygotic variation is the presence of genetically distinct populations of cells in an individual derived from a single zygote, and this is an understudied aspect of genome biology. We report somatically variable VNTR with sequence properties of an enhancer, located upstream of IFNAR1. Initially, SNP genotyping of 63 monozygotic twin pairs and multiple tissues from 21 breast cancer patients suggested a frequent post-zygotic mosaicism. The VNTR displayed a repeated 32 bp core motif in the center of the repeat, which was flanked by similar variable motifs. A total of 14 alleles were characterized based on combinations of segments, which showed post-zygotic and inter-individual variation, with up to 6 alleles in a single subject. Somatic variation occurred in ∼24% of cases. In this hypervariable region, we found a clustering of transcription factor binding sites with strongest sequence similarity to mouse Foxg1 transcription factor binding motif. This study describes a VNTR with sequence properties of an enhancer that displays post-zygotic and inter-individual genetic variation. This element is within a locus containing four related cytokine receptors: IFNAR2, IL10Rβ, IFNAR1 and IFNGR2, and we hypothesize that it might function in transcriptional regulation of several genes in this cluster. Our findings add another level of complexity to the variation among VNTR-based enhancers. Further work may unveil the normal function of this VNTR in transcriptional control and its possible involvement in diseases connected with these receptors, such as autoimmune conditions and cancer.
PLoS ONE 09/2013; 8(9):e67752. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0067752 · 3.23 Impact Factor
"FoxG1 inhibits signaling through the Smad/TGF-β pathway (Dou et al., 2000) leading to a down-regulation of the growth-inhibitory protein p21 (WAF1/ CIP1), and thus allows proliferation of the neuroepithelium to continue during embryogenesis (Seoane et al., 2004). FoxG1 also inhibits transcriptional activation by another forkheadbox transcription factor, FoxO1, whose activity is regulated by PI3K and its downstream activator Akt (Adesina et al., 2007; Aoki et al., 2004; Brunet et al., 1999). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Evidence from a variety of sources suggests that structural alterations in the brain, including neurogenesis, may play a role in both the pathogenesis of mood disorders and the mechanism of action of antidepressants. Previous studies have implicated both the transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta), and the phosphatidyl inositol-3 kinase (PI3K)-Akt pathways in the neurogenesis-promoting and behavioral properties of antidepressants. Forkhead box protein G1 (FoxG1) is a major regulator of both of these pathways, and FoxG1 heterozygous null mice (FoxG1+/-) have previously been reported to have deficits in adult hippocampal neurogenesis and behavioral abnormalities including deficits in contextual fear learning. However the role of FoxG1, if any, in the response to antidepressants has not been previously investigated.To investigate the role of the FoxG1 gene in the behavioral and neurogenic properties of antidepressants, we tested FoxG1+/- mice and littermate controls in two different rodent models of antidepressant action: the tail suspension test and the forced swim test. FoxG1+/- mice showed no response to antidepressants in either of these tests. These results suggest that normal levels of FoxG1 may be required for the behavioral response to antidepressants.
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