[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract The CpG Island Methylator Phenotype (CIMP) is fundamental to an important subset of colorectal cancer; however, its cause is unknown. CIMP is associated with microsatellite instability but is also found in BRAF mutant microsatellite stable cancers that are associated with poor prognosis. The isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 (IDH1) gene causes CIMP in glioma due to an activating mutation that produces the 2-hydroxyglutarate oncometabolite. We therefore examined IDH1 alteration as a potential cause of CIMP in colorectal cancer. The IDH1 mutational hotspot was screened in 86 CIMP-positive and 80 CIMP-negative cancers. The entire coding sequence was examined in 81 CIMP-positive colorectal cancers. Forty-seven cancers varying by CIMP-status and IDH1 mutation status were examined using Illumina 450K DNA methylation microarrays. The R132C IDH1 mutation was detected in 4/166 cancers. All IDH1 mutations were in CIMP cancers that were BRAF mutant and microsatellite stable (4/45, 8.9%). Unsupervised hierarchical cluster analysis identified an IDH1 mutation-like methylation signature in approximately half of the CIMP-positive cancers. IDH1 mutation appears to cause CIMP in a small proportion of BRAF mutant, microsatellite stable colorectal cancers. This study provides a precedent that a single gene mutation may cause CIMP in colorectal cancer, and that this will be associated with a specific epigenetic signature and clinicopathological features.
Epigenetics: official journal of the DNA Methylation Society 12/2014; 29(11). DOI:10.4161/15592294.2014.971624 · 4.78 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DNA methylation varies throughout the normal colorectal mucosa and DNA methylation in normal appearing mucosa is associated with serrated and adenomatous neoplasia elsewhere within the colorectum.
The purpose of this study was to measure luminal chemistry, rectal proliferation and mucosal DNA methylation and thus determine whether regional and pathological patterns of DNA methylation could be explained by luminal and epithelial factors.
Twenty healthy subjects had normal rectal mucosal biopsies and a 24-h fecal collection. Rectal biopsies were analyzed for epithelial proliferation (Ki67 immunohistochemistry) and DNA methylation at 17 different markers, including "type A" markers (ESR1, GATA5, HIC1, HPP1, SFRP1), "type C" markers (MGMT, MLH1, CDKN2A, MINT1, MINT2, MINT31, IGF2, CACNA1G, NEUROG1, SOCS1, RUNX3), and LINE-1. Fecal analysis included short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), pH and ammonia. Mean "type A" and CIMP panel methylation Z-scores were calculated.
Rectal proliferation was significantly correlated with methylation at ESR1 (ρ = 0.81, P = 0.003) and GATA5 (ρ = 0.78, P = 0.012). LINE-1 methylation was 71.7 vs. 74.1%, in patients with "low" and "high" fecal total SCFA concentration (defined by the median value), respectively (P = 0.0019). On multivariate linear regression "type A" methylation was independently associated with rectal proliferation (P = 0.001). LINE-1 methylation was directly associated with rectal proliferation (P = 0.038) and total fecal SCFA concentration (P = 0.002), and inversely associated with fecal NH(3) concentrations (P = 0.003).
DNA methylation in normal rectal mucosa is associated with crypt proliferation and fecal SCFA concentration. These associations may help to explain regional differences in DNA methylation as well as providing a possible link between the colorectal lumen and carcinogenesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Thrombospondin-4 (THBS4) is a member of the extracellular calcium-binding protein family and is involved in cell adhesion and migration. The aim of this study was to evaluate the potential role of deregulation of THBS4 expression in colorectal carcinogenesis. Of particular interest was the possible silencing of expression by methylation of the CpG island in the gene promoter.
Fifty-five sporadic colorectal tumours stratified for the CpG Island Methylator Phenotype (CIMP) were studied. Immunohistochemical staining of THBS4 protein was assessed in normal and tumour specimens. Relative levels of THBS4 transcript expression in matched tumours and normal mucosa were also determined by quantitative RT-PCR. Colony forming ability was examined in 8 cell lines made to overexpress THBS4. Aberrant promoter hypermethylation was investigated as a possible mechanism of gene disruption using MethyLight. Methylation was also assessed in the normal colonic tissue of 99 patients, with samples biopsied from four regions along the length of the colon.
THBS4 expression was significantly lower in tumour tissue than in matched normal tissue. Immunohistochemical examination demonstrated that THBS4 protein was generally absent from normal epithelial cells and tumours, but was occasionally expressed at low levels in the cytoplasm towards the luminal surface in vesicular structures. Forced THBS4 over-expression caused a 50-60% repression of tumour colony growth in all eight cell lines examined compared to control cell lines. Tumours exhibited significantly higher levels of methylation than matched normal mucosa, and THBS4 methylation correlated with the CpG island methylator phenotype. There was a trend towards decreased gene expression in tumours exhibiting high THBS4 methylation, but the correlation was not significant. THBS4 methylation was detectable in normal mucosal biopsies where it correlated with increasing patient age and negatively with the occurrence of adenomas elsewhere in the colon.
THBS4 shows increased methylation in colorectal cancer, but this is not strongly associated with altered gene expression, either because methylation has not always reached a critical level or because other factors influence THBS4 expression. THBS4 may act as a tumour suppressor gene, demonstrated by its suppression of tumour colony formation in vitro. THBS4 methylation is detectable in normal colonic mucosa and its level may be a biomarker for the occurrence of adenomas and carcinoma.
BMC Cancer 09/2010; 10(1):494. DOI:10.1186/1471-2407-10-494 · 3.36 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There are two major molecular pathways to sporadic colorectal cancer, the chromosomal instability (CIN) and the CpG island methylator phenotype (CIMP) pathways. This study recruited 166 patients undergoing colonoscopy. Biopsy samples were collected from the cecum, transverse colon, sigmoid colon and rectum. DNA methylation was quantified at 'type A' (ESR1, GATA5, HIC1, HPP1, SFRP1) and 'type C' markers (MGMT, MLH1, CDKN2A, MINT2, MINT31, IGF2, CACNA1G, NEUROG1, SOCS1, RUNX3), and LINE-1. 'Type A' genes are frequently methylated in normal and neoplastic tissues, proportional to tissue age. 'Type C' methylation is more specific for neoplasia. The last five 'type C' markers comprise a CIMP panel. The mean 'type A' and CIMP-panel methylation Z-scores were calculated. In all, 88 patients had adenomatous lesions, 32 had proximal serrated polyps (PSPs) and 50 were normal. Most 'type A' genes showed direct correlations between methylation and age (ESR1, rho=0.66, P<0.0001), with higher methylation distally (ESR1, P<0.0001). On multivariate analysis, 'type A' methylation was inversely associated with colorectal adenomas (odds ratio=0.23, P<0.001), the precursor to CIN cancers. CIMP-panel methylation was significantly associated with advanced PSPs (odds ratio=5.1, P=0.009), the precursor to CIMP cancers. DNA methylation in normal mucosa varied with age and region and was associated with pathway-specific pathology. In the future, the colorectal field could yield important information and potentially inform clinical practice.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The development of colorectal cancer is a major complication for patients with chronic idiopathic colitis. Colitis-associated tumours tend to occur at a younger age and be more aggressive than sporadic colorectal cancers. While we have previously associated the presence of tumour-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) and increased apoptosis in sporadic colorectal cancer with high-level microsatellite instability and improved prognosis, little is known of the relationship between these variables in colitis-associated colorectal cancer. The aim of this study was to correlate TILs and tumour cell apoptosis in colitis-associated neoplasms stratified according to microsatellite instability. Twenty tumour and 11 dysplastic samples resected from 21 patients with long-standing colitis were analysed for microsatellite instability at 10 microsatellite markers. TIL distribution (CD3, CD8) and function (granzyme B) were quantified by immunohistochemistry. Neoplastic cell apoptosis was assessed using the M30 CytoDEATH antibody. These findings were compared with 40 microsatellite stable (MSS) sporadic colorectal cancers previously evaluated for TILs and neoplastic apoptosis. Low-level microsatellite instability was found in 1/20 colitis-associated tumours. All other colitis-associated lesions were designated MSS. CD3(+) and CD8(+) TIL counts were significantly higher in colitis-associated lesions compared with MSS sporadic colorectal cancer (p < 0.0001, p = 0.001 respectively). Despite their higher TIL density, colitis-associated tumours were more likely to present late (Dukes' stage C or D) (p = 0.02). Functionally, colitis-associated TILs demonstrated significantly less granzyme B expression compared to sporadic cancers (p = 0.002). The level of tumour cell apoptosis was similar between the two groups (sporadic, 1.53%; colitis cancers, 1.45%). In conclusion, MSS colitis-associated tumours have a higher prevalence of CD3(+)/CD8(+) TILs but no associated increase in tumour cell killing by apoptosis. Unlike cytotoxic T cells in sporadic colorectal cancer, TILs do not appear to enhance the prognosis of colitis-associated colorectal cancer. This may be related to an impairment of granzyme B expression within these lesions.
The Journal of Pathology 02/2006; 208(3):381-7. DOI:10.1002/path.1895 · 7.43 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) is an autosomal dominant disorder caused by mutation of the APC gene. It is characterised by the appearance of hundreds to thousands of colorectal adenomas in adolescence and the subsequent development of colorectal cancer. Various extracolonic malignancies are associated with FAP, including desmoids and neoplasms of the stomach, duodenum, pancreas, liver, and brain. We present a family affected by FAP with an exon 14 APC mutation displaying two rare extracolonic lesions, a hepatoblastoma and a myoepithelial carcinoma. The hepatoblastoma was found in a male patient aged 2 years. The second lesion, a myoepithelial carcinoma of the right cheek, was found in a female patient aged 14 years. Inactivation of the normal APC allele was demonstrated in this lesion by loss of heterozygosity analysis, thus implicating APC in the initiation or progression of this neoplasm. This is the first reported case of this lesion in a family affected by FAP.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Familial adenomatous polyposis usually results in colonic polyposis with hundreds to thousands of polyps, congenital hypertrophy of the retinal pigment epithelium (CHRPE), and variable extracolonic features. Recent reports indicate that patients with distal mutations between codons 1445 and 1578 do not express CHRPE and have a high incidence of desmoid tumours.
The family studied has an unusual phenotype of sparse colonic polyposis but profuse upper gastrointestinal polyposis. Affected subjects do not have CHRPE.
The protein truncation test followed by sequencing identified a 2 base pair deletion at codon 1520 in the APC gene. This results in a frameshift creating a stop codon 13 codons downstream.
This family demonstrates that sparse colonic polyposis but severe upper tract polyposis may be associated with mutations between codons 1445 and 1578.
Study of duodenal and colonic polyps in further cases with mutations in this region is warranted. Such mutations may preferentially cause duodenal adenomas and desmoid tumours as somatic mutations in these tumours also occur in this region, unlike colorectal tumours where somatic mutations occur more proximally. This study emphasises the importance of screening the upper gastrointestinal tract even when the colonic disease is mild.
Gut 11/1997; 41(4):518-21. DOI:10.1136/gut.41.4.518 · 14.66 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Metachronous colorectal cancer still occurs in a small percentage of patients, despite colonoscopic surveillance. Cancers in hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer for which there is a high risk of metachronous cancer show distinctive DNA changes termed replication errors (RER+). Ten to 20 percent of sporadic colorectal cancers are also RER+. The aim of this study was to identify factors predictive of metachronous colorectal cancer, despite colonoscopic surveillance. Clinicopathologic characteristics and RER status of cancers were examined.
Colorectal cancer patients, who entered into a surveillance program of being examined with colonoscopy within six months of surgery and then at intervals of three years thereafter, were reviewed. The 433 patients compliant with the protocol who had had more than one colonoscopy had been followed up for a mean of 3.8 +/- 2.2 years. DNA was extracted from archival paraffin-embedded cancer tissue for determination of RER status.
Ten cases of metachronous cancer were identified, giving a rate of 0.61 percent per year. The site of the index cancer in patients who later developed metachronous cancer was predominantly proximal (P = 0.0007), and these cancers were more likely to have mucinous histology (P < 0.0005). Three of 10 (30 percent) index cancers were RER+, which was not significantly different from unselected series of control colorectal cancers in which 20 of 108 (18.5 percent) were RER+.
This study documents the rate of metachronous cancer among patients compliant with a defined colonoscopic screening program and suggests that the risk is highest in patients with a proximal mucinous cancer. RER status does not appear to be a very strong predictive factor, and this study does not support its use as a guide to the frequency of surveillance colonoscopy. More data would be required to determine if RER positivity conferred a relative risk of 3.3 or less.
Diseases of the Colon & Rectum 06/1997; 40(5):603-8. DOI:10.1007/BF02055387 · 3.75 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The tumor suppressor gene CDKN2A (MTS1/p16), located on chromosome 9p21, is inactivated in a variety of tumors including melanomas and tumors of the biliary tract, pancreas, and stomach. The aim of the present study was to determine whether this gene is inactivated in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Twenty-three primary HCCs and four HCC cell lines were examined. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) analysis was performed using eight polymorphic markers immediately surrounding CDKN2A, and showed a contiguous region of loss, with the two most commonly deleted markers being D9S1604, located between the p16 and p15 genes, at which 7 of 13 informative tumors (54%) showed loss, and D9S171, with 4 of 14 LOH (29%). Exons 1, 2, and 3 of CDKN2A were amplified by polymerase chain reaction to detect homozygous deletions, and single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) analysis was performed to screen for mutations. No homozygous deletions were detected in any sample. SSCP and sequence analysis showed the same nucleotide change at codon 148 in four tumors. This has been reported elsewhere as a polymorphism. One of these four tumors also contained a mutation at codon 119, resulting in the substitution of an acidic amino acid for a basic one. It is concluded that CDKN2A is infrequently deleted or mutated in HCC. The region of allelic loss upstream from CDKN2A might result in inactivation of regulatory sequences important in the expression of this gene; alternatively, a second tumor suppressor gene may be present in the region 9p21-22, proximal to CDKN2A. These possibilities require further investigation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Allelic loss is a common mechanism of inactivation of tumour-suppressor genes in colorectal carcinomas. A number of known or putative tumour-suppressor genes including NF1, BRCA1, NME1, NME2 and prohibitin are present on the long arm of chromosome 17, and this region has not been extensively analysed in colorectal tumours. In this study 72 colorectal carcinomas were examined for allelic loss at eight loci on chromosome 17. Allelic loss was frequent both at the p53 locus, which is known to be important in colorectal carcinoma, and also telomeric to p53 on 17p. Allelic loss continued to be present in more than 50% of cases in the pericentromeric region and on proximal 17q to the marker LEW101 (D17S40) at 17q22-23. The most telomeric markers on 17q showed lower rates of allelic loss. Analysis of cases with partial deletions which did not include the p53 locus showed a common region of overlap of the deletions centred on D17S40. This suggests the target of allelic loss on 17q is a tumour-suppressor gene in this region.
British Journal of Cancer 06/1995; 71(5):1070-3. DOI:10.1038/bjc.1995.206 · 4.84 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Widespread mutations in simple tandemly repeated (STR) DNA sequences are frequently found in colorectal tumors from patients with hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) and less frequently in sporadic colorectal cancers. This aims of this study were to determine the type of DNA sequence most commonly affected by such mutations and to examine the point in the natural history of the tumor where replication errors (RERs) appear. An unselected series of colorectal tumors (49 adenomas and 108 carcinomas) was examined with 4 different STR markers: one Alu VpA polymorphism (MYCLI), one tetranucleotide repeat (D17S846), one dinucleotide repeat (D3S1029), and one polyA repeat (AP delta 3 delta). All 3 positive adenomas and 18 of 20 positive carcinomas showed replication errors in the Alu VpA sequence at the MYCLI locus, making this marker more than twice as sensitive as the best of the other 3 markers. Importantly, all positive adenomas showed small foci of carcinoma in situ. This suggests that replication errors manifest at the adenoma/carcinoma transition in sporadic colorectal tumors.
Genes Chromosomes and Cancer 05/1995; 12(4):251-4. · 4.04 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: L-myc is a nuclear oncogene which is sometimes activated late in tumourigenesis. Digestion of DNA with EcoRI reveals a simple restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) located in the second intron of L-myc, with allele sizes 10 kb (L-allele) and 6.6 kb (S-allele). Some studies have suggested that the presence of the S-allele in the constitutional DNA of a patient with cancer is associated with a higher risk of metastasis in lung, breast and renal cell carcinomas. The aims of this study were to determine if the S-allele was significantly associated with metastasis and also with inactivation of tumour suppressor genes in colorectal cancer. One hundred and twenty-four Caucasian colorectal cancer patients were studied for L-myc genotype, and a subgroup of these (108) had their tumours examined for allele loss at multiple loci on nine chromosomal arms (1p, 1q, 5q, 8p, 14q, 17p, 17q, 18q, 22q) and for mutations in the 12th codon of K-ras. The percentage of individuals with the SS genotype was 19% (4/21) Dukes Stage A, 19% (10/54) Dukes B, 25% (8/32) Dukes C and 40% (8/20) Dukes D. The trend observed here is significant (P < 0.05, Wilcoxon Rank Sum Test). Also, the SS genotype was significantly more common in individuals whose tumours showed allelic loss on 18q (P < 0.01, Fishers Exact Test). This work suggests that the S-allele of L-myc, or a gene in linkage disequilibrium with it, may modify the development of colorectal cancer.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The current model for colorectal tumorigenesis defines four specific mutations (activation of a ras proto-oncogene and inactivation of the APC, p53 and DCC tumor-suppressor genes) that accumulate in a colonic epithelial cell as it progresses towards a carcinoma. However, further mutations must be needed for progression to malignancy because advanced adenomas have been observed with all four of these mutations. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) for 11 loci spanning the distal portion of the long arm of chromosome 14 was studied in 89 sporadic colorectal adenocarcinomas and 25 adenomas. The overall rate of LOH in carcinomas was 53% (46/86 informative carcinomas). The smallest region of overlap (SRO) of deletions includes the markers D14S19 to D14S20. No LOH was seen in the 18 informative adenomas examined. There was a significant trend towards higher levels of LOH within the SRO in advanced Dukes' stages (P = 0.016). Since frequent loss of heterozygosity in a specific region of a chromosome may reflect the inactivation of a tumor-suppressor gene located there, these data suggest that a gene involved in the progression of colonic neoplasia may reside on the distal portion of the long arm of chromosome 14, and that its inactivation may be a critical event in this process.