Effects of DNA methylation on galectin-3 expression in pituitary tumors.
ABSTRACT Galectin-3 (Gal-3), a beta-galactoside-binding protein is expressed in a specific cell-type manner in pituitary tumors. Here we questioned the mechanism of Gal-3 expression in pituitary tumors, by using methylation-specific PCR and DNA sequence analyses to analyze the methylation status of the promoter region of the LGALS3 gene. DNA analysis of a human pituitary tumor, breast carcinoma cell lines, and thyroid carcinoma cell lines showed that in cells expressing Gal-3 protein, the LGALS3 gene was unmethylated, whereas in Gal-3 null cells, the promoter of the LGALS3 gene was methylated. Treatment of cells with 30 mumol/L 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine induced Gal-3 mRNA and protein expression. Among pituitary tumors, 30% (7/23), mainly in follicle-stimulating hormone/luteinizing hormone-producing (38%) and null cell (57%) adenomas, the promoter of the LGALS3 was found to be methylated and silenced, although prolactin- and adrenocorticotropic hormone-producing tumors, which were unmethylated, expressed the Gal-3 protein. These results show for the first time that Gal-3 expression is regulated in part by promoter methylation in pituitary as well as in other tumors. Because it is functionally involved in cancer progression and metastasis, Gal-3 may serve as a possible therapeutic target in the treatment of pituitary tumors.
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ABSTRACT: Promoter hypermethylation is recognized as a hallmark of human cancer, in addition to conventional mechanisms of gene inactivation. As such, many new technologies have been developed over the past two decades to uncover novel targets of methylation and decipher complex epigenetic patterns. However, many of these are either labor intensive or provide limited data, confined to oligonucleotide hybridization sequences or enzyme cleavage sites and cannot be easily applied to screening large sets of sequences or samples. We present an application of denaturing high performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC), which relies on bisulfite modification of genomic DNA, for methylation screening. We validated DHPLC as a methylation screening tool using GSTP1, a well known target of methylation in prostate cancer. We developed an in silico approach to identify potential targets of promoter hypermethylation in prostate cancer. Using DHPLC, we screened two of these targets LGALS3 and SMAD4 for methylation. We show that DHPLC has an application as a fast, sensitive, quantitative and cost effective method for screening novel targets or DNA samples for DNA methylation.Epigenetics: official journal of the DNA Methylation Society 2(1):43-9. · 4.58 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Janus kinase (JAK)/signal transducers and activators of transcription (STAT) cascade are required for cytokines, growth factors, G-proteins and hormones (growth hormone and prolactin). Gatekeepers in this pathway are the suppressor of cytokine signalling (SOCS) family of proteins. Their expression level is epigenetically regulated by DNA methylation. We have investigated the CpG island methylation status of SOCS-1 in a cohort of pituitary adenomas (PA; n=57), craniopharyngiomas (CP; n=30) and normal pituitary tissue (NP; n=11) using methylation sensitive single-strand conformation polymorphism analysis (MS-SSCP) and direct sequencing. SOCS-1 hypermethylation was identified in 51% (29/57) of surgical specimens obtained from PA patients. 83% of these tumours were clinically silent. In contrast, no methylation of SOCS-1 was observed in CPs or NPs. Quantitative real-time PCR and western blot analysis confirmed reduced SOCS-1 expression in the majority of pituitary adenomas. The data is compatible with epigenetic silencing of the SOCS-1 gene and constitutive activation of the JAK-STAT pathway in PA. This appears to contribute particularly to those tumours characterized by a hormone-inactive status.Acta Neuropathologica 04/2006; 111(3):264-71. · 9.32 Impact Factor