Sandra Orsulic

University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, United States

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Publications (50)392.11 Total impact

  • Paolo Peterlongo, Jenny Chang-Claude, Kirsten B Moysich, Anja Rudolph, Rita K Schmutzler, Jacques Simard, Penny Soucy, Rosalind A Eeles, Douglas F Easton, Ute Hamann, [......], Ake Borg, Karoline B Kuchenbaecker, Lesley McGuffog, Daniel Barrowdale, Sue Healey, Andrew Lee, Paul D P Pharoah, Georgia Chenevix-Trench, Antonis C Antoniou, Eitan Friedman
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    ABSTRACT: Background: BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers are at substantially increased risk for developing breast and ovarian cancer. The incomplete penetrance coupled with the variable age at diagnosis in carriers of the same mutation suggests the existence of genetic and non-genetic modifying factors. In this study we evaluated the putative role of variants in many candidate modifier genes. Methods: Genotyping data from 15,252 BRCA1 and 8,211 BRCA2 mutation carriers, for known variants (n=3,248) located within or around 445 candidate genes, were available through the iCOGS custom-designed array. Breast and ovarian cancer association analysis was performed within a retrospective cohort approach. Results: The observed p-values of association ranged between 0.005-1.000. None of the variants was significantly associated with breast or ovarian cancer risk in either BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers, after multiple testing adjustments. Conclusion: There is little evidence that any of the evaluated candidate variants act as modifiers of breast and/or ovarian cancer risk in BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers. Impact: Genome-wide association studies have been more successful at identifying genetic modifiers of BRCA1/2 penetrance than candidate gene studies.
    10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The current standard of care for epithelial ovarian cancer does not discriminate between different histologic subtypes (serous, clear cell, endometrioid and mucinous) despite the knowledge that ovarian carcinoma subtypes do not respond uniformly to conventional platinum/taxane-based chemotherapy. Exploiting addictions and vulnerabilities in cancers with distinguishable molecular features presents an opportunity to develop individualized therapies that may be more effective than the current ‘one size fits all' approach. One such opportunity is arginine depletion therapy with pegylated arginine deiminase, which has shown promise in several cancer types that exhibit low levels of argininosuccinate synthetase including hepatocellular and prostate carcinoma and melanoma. Based on the high levels of argininosuccinate synthetase previously observed in ovarian cancers, these tumours have been considered unlikely candidates for arginine depletion therapy. However, argininosuccinate synthetase levels have not been evaluated in the individual histologic subtypes of ovarian carcinoma. The current study is the first to examine the expression of argininosuccinate synthetase at the mRNA and protein levels in large cohorts of primary and recurrent ovarian carcinomas and ovarian cancer cell lines. We show that the normal fallopian tube fimbria and the majority of primary high-grade and low-grade serous ovarian carcinomas express high levels of argininosuccinate synthetase, which tend to further increase in recurrent tumours. In contrast to the serous subtype, non-serous ovarian carcinoma subtypes (clear cell, endometrioid and mucinous) frequently lack detectable argininosuccinate synthetase expression. The in vitro sensitivity of ovarian cancer cell lines to arginine depletion with pegylated arginine deiminase was inversely correlated with argininosuccinate synthetase expression. Our data suggest that the majority of serous ovarian carcinomas are not susceptible to therapeutic intervention with arginine deiminase while a subset of non-serous ovarian carcinoma subtypes are auxotrophic for arginine and should be considered for clinical trials with pegylated arginine deiminase.
    The Journal of Pathology: Clinical Research. 10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Human basal-like breast cancer (BLBC) has a poor prognosis and is often identified by expression of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). BLBC remains a major clinical challenge because its pathogenesis is not well understood, thus hindering efforts to develop targeted therapies. Recent data implicate the forkhead box C1 (FOXC1) transcription factor as an important prognostic biomarker and functional regulator of BLBC, but its regulatory mechanism and impact on BLBC tumorigenesis remain unclear.
    Annals of Surgical Oncology 08/2014; · 4.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We reevaluated previously reported associations between variants in pathways of one-carbon (1-C) (folate) transfer genes and ovarian carcinoma (OC) risk, and in related pathways of purine and pyrimidine metabolism, and assessed interactions with folate intake.
    Molecular Nutrition & Food Research 07/2014; · 4.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters play various roles in cancer biology and drug resistance, but their association with outcomes in serous epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is unknown. Methods The relationship between clinical outcomes and ABC transporter gene expression in two independent cohorts of high-grade serous EOC tumors was assessed with real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction, analysis of expression microarray data, and immunohistochemistry. Associations between clinical outcomes and ABCA transporter gene single nucleotide polymorphisms were tested in a genome-wide association study. Impact of short interfering RNA–mediated gene suppression was determined by colony forming and migration assays. Association with survival was assessed with Kaplan–Meier analysis and log-rank tests. All statistical tests were two-sided. Results Associations with outcome were observed with ABC transporters of the “A” subfamily, but not with multidrug transporters. High-level expression of ABCA1, ABCA6, ABCA8, and ABCA9 in primary tumors was statistically significantly associated with reduced survival in serous ovarian cancer patients. Low levels of ABCA5 and the C-allele of rs536009 were associated with shorter overall survival (hazard ratio for death = 1.50; 95% confidence interval [CI] =1.26 to 1.79; P = 6.5e−6). The combined expression pattern of ABCA1, ABCA5, and either ABCA8 or ABCA9 was associated with particularly poor outcome (mean overall survival in group with adverse ABCA1, ABCA5 and ABCA9 gene expression = 33.2 months, 95% CI = 26.4 to 40.1; vs 55.3 months in the group with favorable ABCA gene expression, 95% CI = 49.8 to 60.8; P = .001), independently of tumor stage or surgical debulking status. Suppression of cholesterol transporter ABCA1 inhibited ovarian cancer cell growth and migration in vitro, and statin treatment reduced ovarian cancer cell migration. Conclusions Expression of ABCA transporters was associated with poor outcome in serous ovarian cancer, implicating lipid trafficking as a potentially important process in EOC.
    JNCI Journal of the National Cancer Institute 06/2014; · 14.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The current standard of care for epithelial ovarian cancer does not discriminate between different histologic subtypes (serous, clear cell, endometrioid and mucinous) despite the knowledge that ovarian carcinoma subtypes do not respond uniformly to conventional platinum/taxane-based chemotherapy. Exploiting addictions and vulnerabilities in cancers with distinguishable molecular features presents an opportunity to develop individualized therapies that may be more effective than the current ‘one size fits all’ approach. One such opportunity is arginine depletion therapy with pegylated arginine deiminase, ADI-PEG 20, which has shown promise in several cancer types that exhibit low levels of argininosuccinate synthetase (ASS1) including hepatocellular and prostate carcinoma and melanoma. Based on the high levels of ASS1 previously observed in ovarian cancers, these tumors have been considered unlikely candidates for arginine depletion therapy. However, ASS1 levels have not been evaluated in the individual histologic subtypes of ovarian carcinoma. The current study is the first to examine the expression of ASS1 at the mRNA and protein levels in large cohorts of primary and recurrent ovarian carcinomas and ovarian cancer cell lines. We show that the normal fallopian tube fimbria and the majority of primary high-grade and low-grade serous ovarian carcinomas express high levels of ASS1, which tend to further increase in recurrent tumors. In contrast to the serous subtype, non-serous ovarian carcinoma subtypes (clear cell, endometrioid and mucinous) frequently lack detectable ASS1 expression. The in vitro sensitivity of ovarian cancer cell lines to arginine depletion with ADI-PEG 20 was inversely correlated with ASS1 expression. Our data suggest that the majority of serous ovarian carcinomas are not susceptible to therapeutic intervention with arginine deiminase while a subset of non-serous ovarian carcinoma subtypes are auxotrophic for arginine and should be considered for clinical trials with ADI-PEG 20.
    Journal of Clinical Pathology 06/2014; · 2.44 Impact Factor
  • Dong-Joo Cheon, Sandra Orsulic
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    ABSTRACT: Keywords: collagen • metastasis • ovarian cancer • poor prognosis • stroma • ten-gene biomarker This editorial article discuss our recent discovery of the collagen-remodeling gene signature: 1. Current challenges in ovarian cancer management 2. Identification of the ten-gene biomarker panel 3. Tumor–stroma interaction: Achilles’ heel of ovarian cancer? 4. Conclusion & future perspective
    Biomarkers in Medicine 04/2014; 8(4):523-6. · 3.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although dendritic cell (DC) vaccines are considered to be promising treatments for advanced cancer, their production and administration is costly and labor-intensive. We developed a novel immunotherapeutic agent that links a single-chain antibody variable fragment (scFv) targeting mesothelin (MSLN), which is overexpressed on ovarian cancer and mesothelioma cells, to Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70), which is a potent immune activator that stimulates monocytes and DCs, enhances DC aggregation and maturation and improves cross-priming of T cells mediated by DCs. Binding of this fusion protein with MSLN on the surface of tumor cells was measured by flow cytometry and fluorescence microscopy. The therapeutic efficacy of this fusion protein was evaluated in syngeneic and orthotopic mouse models of papillary ovarian cancer and malignant mesothelioma. Mice received 4 intraperitoneal (ip) treatments with experimental or control proteins post ip injection of tumor cells. Ascites-free and overall survival time was measured. For the investigation of anti-tumor T-cell responses, a time-matched study was performed. Splenocytes were stimulated with peptides, and IFNgamma- or Granzyme B- generating CD3+CD8+ T cells were detected by flow cytometry. To examine the role of CD8+ T cells in the antitumor effect, we performed in vivo CD8+ cell depletion. We further determined if the fusion protein increases DC maturation and improves antigen presentation as well as cross-presentation by DCs. We demonstrated in vitro that the scFvMTBHsp70 fusion protein bound to the tumor cells used in this study through the interaction of scFv with MSLN on the surface of these cells, and induced maturation of bone marrow-derived DCs Use of this bifunctional fusion protein in both mouse models significantly enhanced survival and slowed tumor growth while augmenting tumor-specific CD8+ T-cell dependent immune responses. We also demonstrated in vitro and in vivo that the fusion protein enhanced antigen presentation and cross-presentation by targeting tumor antigens towards DCs. This new cancer immunotherapy has the potential to be cost-effective and broadly applicable to tumors that overexpress mesothelin.
    Journal of Hematology & Oncology 02/2014; 7(1):15. · 4.46 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objective : Women with BRCA-associated ovarian cancer demonstrate excellent responses to Pegylated Liposomal Doxorubicin (PLD). PLD has also been shown to enhance T cell recognition of tumor cells. Here we characterize immunophenotypic changes associated with BRCA1 dysfunction in ovarian cancer cells, and evaluate the T cell contribution to the therapeutic efficacy of PLD in a BRCA1- ovarian cancer model to determine whether enhanced anti-tumor immunity contributes to the improved response to PLD in BRCA1- ovarian cancers. Methods : The immunophenotype of BRCA1- and wild-type (WT) ovarian cancer cells and their response to PLD were compared in vitro using flow cytometry. T cell recruitment to BRCA1- tumors was evaluated with flow cytometry and immunohistochemistry. The contribution of T cell populations to the therapeutic effect of PLD in a BRCA1- model was evaluated using immunodepleting antibodies with PLD in vivo. Results : The cytotoxic response to PLD was similar in BRCA1- and WT cells in vitro. BRCA1- inactivation resulted in higher expression of Fas and MHC-I at baseline and after PLD exposure. PLD prolonged the survival of BRCA1- tumor bearing mice and increased intratumoral T cell recruitment. CD4 + depletion combined with PLD significantly prolonged overall survival (p = 0.0204) in BRCA1- tumor-bearing mice. Conclusion : Differences in the immunophenotype of BRCA1- and WT cells are amplified by PLD exposure. The enhanced immunomodulatory effects of PLD in BRCA1- tumors may be exploited therapeutically by eliminating suppressive CD4 + T cells. Our results support further study of combination therapy using PLD and immune agents, particularly in women with BRCA gene mutations.
    Gynecologic Oncology 01/2014; · 3.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To identify molecular prognosticators and therapeutic targets for high-grade serous epithelial ovarian cancers (EOC) using genetic analyses driven by biologic features of EOC pathogenesis. Ovarian tissue samples (n=172; 122 serous EOC, 30 other EOC, 20 normal/benign) collected prospectively from sequential patients undergoing gynecologic surgery were analyzed using RNA expression microarrays. Samples were classified based on expression of genes with potential relevance in ovarian cancer. Gene sets were defined using Rosetta Similarity Search Tool (ROAST) and analysis of variance (ANOVA). Gene copy number variations were identified by array comparative genomic hybridization. No distinct subgroups of EOC could be identified by unsupervised clustering, however, analyses based on based on genes correlated with periostin (POSTN) and estrogen receptor-alpha (ESR1) yielded distinct subgroups. When 95 high-grade serous EOC were grouped by genes based on ANOVA comparing ESR1/WT1 and POSTN/TGFBI samples, overall survival (OS) was significantly shorter for 43 patients with tumors expressing genes associated with POSTN/TGFBI compared to 52 patients with tumors expressing genes associated with ESR1/WT1 (median 30 versus 49 months, respectively; P=0.022). Several targets with therapeutic potential were identified within each subgroup. BRCA germline mutations were more frequent in the ESR1/WT1 subgroup. Proliferation-associated genes and TP53 status (mutated or wild-type) did not correlate with survival. Findings were validated using independent ovarian cancer datasets. Two distinct molecular subgroups of high-grade serous EOC based on POSTN/TGFBI and ESR1/WT1 expression were identified with significantly different OS. Specific differentially expressed genes between these subgroups provide potential prognostic and therapeutic targets.
    Gynecologic Oncology 12/2013; · 3.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To elucidate molecular pathways contributing to metastatic cancer progression and poor clinical outcome in serous ovarian cancer. Poor survival signatures from three different serous ovarian cancer datasets were compared and a common set of genes was identified. The predictive value of this gene signature was validated in independent datasets. The expression of the signature genes was evaluated in primary, metastatic, and/or recurrent cancers using qPCR and in situ hybridization. Alterations in gene expression by TGFβ1 and functional consequences of loss of COL11A1 were evaluated using pharmacologic and knockdown approaches, respectively. We identified and validated a 10-gene signature (AEBP1, COL11A1, COL5A1, COL6A2, LOX, POSTN, SNAI2, THBS2, TIMP3, VCAN) that is associated with poor overall survival in patients with high-grade serous ovarian cancer. The signature genes encode extracellular matrix proteins involved in collagen remodeling. Expression of the signature genes is regulated by TGFβ1 signaling and is enriched in metastases in comparison to primary ovarian tumors. We demonstrate that levels of COL11A1, one of the signature genes, continuously increase during ovarian cancer disease progression, with the highest expression in recurrent metastases. Knockdown of COL11A1 decreases in vitro cell migration and invasion and tumor progression in mice. Our findings suggest that collagen-remodeling genes regulated by TGFβ1 signaling promote metastasis and contribute to poor overall survival in patients with serous ovarian cancer. Our 10-gene signature has both predictive value and biological relevance and thus may be useful as a therapeutic target.
    Clinical Cancer Research 11/2013; · 7.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ovarian cancers are thought to result from the accumulation of multiple genetic aberrations that transform ovarian and/or fallopian tube surface epithelial cells, allowing for their abnormal growth, proliferation and metastasis. In the report presented here, we carried out genome-wide copy-number analysis using comparative genomic hybridization on a panel of mouse ovarian cancer (OVCA) cell lines previously established in our laboratory. We identified a recurrent focal amplification on mouse chromosomal region 2qB, which contains the LIM-homeodomain-containing transcription factor 1B (Lmx1b) gene. LMX1B is not expressed in normal human ovary, but is expressed in many human OVCA cell lines and primary tumors. High expression of LMX1B correlates with poor outcome. To clarify the role of LMX1B in ovarian carcinogenesis, we transduced LMX1B into a panel of mouse and human OVCA cell lines and demonstrated that LMX1B strongly promotes migration of cancer cells in culture and promotes xenograft growth in nude mice. Conversely, knockdown of LMX1B in a human cell line with endogenous high expression of LMX1B inhibits cell migration in vitro and tumor growth in vivo. Microarray analysis of cells overexpressing LMX1B identified the nuclear factor (NF)-κB pathway as a potential mediator of tumor progression and subsequent treatment of NFκB inhibitor decreased the migratory capacity of these cells. Thus, our data demonstrate that LMX1B is a novel oncogene in OVCA pathogenesis.Oncogene advance online publication, 23 September 2013; doi:10.1038/onc.2013.375.
    Oncogene 09/2013; · 8.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Development of recurrent platinum resistant disease following chemotherapy presents a challenge in managing ovarian cancer. Using tumors derived from genetically defined mouse ovarian cancer cells, we investigated the stem cell properties of residual cells post-chemotherapy. Utilizing CD133 and Sca-1 as markers of candidate tumor initiating cells (TIC), we determined that the relative levels of CD133(+) and Sca-1(+) cells were unaltered following chemotherapy. CD133(+) and Sca-1(+) cells exhibited increased stem cell-related gene expression were enriched in Go/G1-early S phase and exhibited increased tumor initiating capacity, giving rise to heterogeneous tumors. Our findings suggest that residual TICs may contribute to recurrent disease.
    Cancer letters 06/2013; · 5.02 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Proliferation and fusion of myoblasts is a well-orchestrated process occurring during muscle development and regeneration. Although myoblasts are known to originate from muscle satellite cells, the molecular mechanisms that coordinate their commitment toward differentiation are poorly understood. Here, we present a novel role for the transcription factor Forkhead box protein C2 (Foxc2) in regulating proliferation and preventing premature differentiation of activated muscle satellite cells. We demonstrate that Foxc2 expression is upregulated early in activated mouse muscle satellite cells and then diminishes during myogenesis. In undifferentiated C2C12 myoblasts, downregulation of endogenous Foxc2 expression leads to a decrease in proliferation, whereas forced expression of FOXC2 sustains proliferation and prevents differentiation into myotubes. We also show that FOXC2 induces Wnt signaling by direct interaction with the Wnt4 (wingless-type MMTV integration site family member-4) promoter region. The resulting elevated expression of bone morphogenetic protein-4 (Bmp4) and RhoA-GTP proteins inhibits the proper myoblast alignment and fusion required for myotube formation. Interestingly, continuous forced expression of FOXC2 alters the commitment of C2C12 myoblasts toward osteogenic differentiation, which is consistent with FOXC2 expression observed in patients with myositis ossificans, an abnormal bone growth within muscle tissue. In summary, our results suggest that (a) Foxc2 regulates the proliferation of multipotent muscle satellite cells; (b) downregulation of Foxc2 is critical for myogenesis to progress; and (c) sustained Foxc2 expression in myoblast cells suppresses myogenesis and alters their lineage commitment toward osteogenesis by inducing the Wnt4 and Bmp4 signaling pathways.Cell Death and Differentiation advance online publication, 3 May 2013; doi:10.1038/cdd.2013.34.
    Cell death and differentiation 05/2013; · 8.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We performed an integrated genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic characterization of 373 endometrial carcinomas using array- and sequencing-based technologies. Uterine serous tumours and ∼25% of high-grade endometrioid tumours had extensive copy number alterations, few DNA methylation changes, low oestrogen receptor/progesterone receptor levels, and frequent TP53 mutations. Most endometrioid tumours had few copy number alterations or TP53 mutations, but frequent mutations in PTEN, CTNNB1, PIK3CA, ARID1A and KRAS and novel mutations in the SWI/SNF chromatin remodelling complex gene ARID5B. A subset of endometrioid tumours that we identified had a markedly increased transversion mutation frequency and newly identified hotspot mutations in POLE. Our results classified endometrial cancers into four categories: POLE ultramutated, microsatellite instability hypermutated, copy-number low, and copy-number high. Uterine serous carcinomas share genomic features with ovarian serous and basal-like breast carcinomas. We demonstrated that the genomic features of endometrial carcinomas permit a reclassification that may affect post-surgical adjuvant treatment for women with aggressive tumours.
    Nature 05/2013; 497(7447):67-73. · 38.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: BRCA1-associated breast and ovarian cancer risks can be modified by common genetic variants. To identify further cancer risk-modifying loci, we performed a multi-stage GWAS of 11,705 BRCA1 carriers (of whom 5,920 were diagnosed with breast and 1,839 were diagnosed with ovarian cancer), with a further replication in an additional sample of 2,646 BRCA1 carriers. We identified a novel breast cancer risk modifier locus at 1q32 for BRCA1 carriers (rs2290854, P = 2.7×10(-8), HR = 1.14, 95% CI: 1.09-1.20). In addition, we identified two novel ovarian cancer risk modifier loci: 17q21.31 (rs17631303, P = 1.4×10(-8), HR = 1.27, 95% CI: 1.17-1.38) and 4q32.3 (rs4691139, P = 3.4×10(-8), HR = 1.20, 95% CI: 1.17-1.38). The 4q32.3 locus was not associated with ovarian cancer risk in the general population or BRCA2 carriers, suggesting a BRCA1-specific association. The 17q21.31 locus was also associated with ovarian cancer risk in 8,211 BRCA2 carriers (P = 2×10(-4)). These loci may lead to an improved understanding of the etiology of breast and ovarian tumors in BRCA1 carriers. Based on the joint distribution of the known BRCA1 breast cancer risk-modifying loci, we estimated that the breast cancer lifetime risks for the 5% of BRCA1 carriers at lowest risk are 28%-50% compared to 81%-100% for the 5% at highest risk. Similarly, based on the known ovarian cancer risk-modifying loci, the 5% of BRCA1 carriers at lowest risk have an estimated lifetime risk of developing ovarian cancer of 28% or lower, whereas the 5% at highest risk will have a risk of 63% or higher. Such differences in risk may have important implications for risk prediction and clinical management for BRCA1 carriers.
    PLoS Genetics 03/2013; 9(3):e1003212. · 8.52 Impact Factor
  • Gynecologic Oncology. 10/2012; 127(1):S1–S2.
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    ABSTRACT: Ovarian cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer death in women. Ovarian cancers display a high degree of complex genetic alterations involving many oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. Analysis of the association between genetic alterations and clinical endpoints such as survival will lead to improved patient management via genetic stratification of patients into clinically relevant subgroups. In this study, we aim to define subgroups of high-grade serous ovarian carcinomas that differ with respect to prognosis and overall survival. Genome-wide DNA copy number alterations (CNAs) were measured in 72 clinically annotated, high-grade serous tumors using high-resolution oligonucleotide arrays. Two clinically annotated, independent cohorts were used for validation. Unsupervised hierarchical clustering of copy number data derived from the 72 patient cohort resulted in two clusters with significant difference in progression free survival (PFS) and a marginal difference in overall survival (OS). GISTIC analysis of the two clusters identified altered regions unique to each cluster. Supervised clustering of two independent large cohorts of high-grade serous tumors using the classification scheme derived from the two initial clusters validated our results and identified 8 genomic regions that are distinctly different among the subgroups. These 8 regions map to 8p21.3, 8p23.2, 12p12.1, 17p11.2, 17p12, 19q12, 20q11.21 and 20q13.12; and harbor potential oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes that are likely to be involved in the pathogenesis of ovarian carcinoma. We have identified a set of genetic alterations that could be used for stratification of high-grade serous tumors into clinically relevant treatment subgroups.
    PLoS ONE 06/2012; 7(2):e30996. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Bortezomib is a proteasome inhibitor with minimal clinical activity as a monotherapy in solid tumours, but its combination with other targeted therapies is being actively investigated as a way to increase its anticarcinogenic properties. Here, we evaluate the therapeutic potential of co-treatment with bortezomib and indole-3-carbinol (I3C), a natural compound found in cruciferous vegetables, in human ovarian cancer. We examined the effects of I3C, bortezomib and cisplatin in several human ovarian cancer cell lines. Synergy was determined using proliferation assays and isobologram analysis. Cell cycle and apoptotic effects were assessed by flow cytometry. The mechanism of I3C and bortezomib action was determined by RNA microarray studies, quantitative RT-PCR and western blotting. Antitumour activity of I3C and bortezomib was evaluated using an OVCAR5 xenograft mouse model. I3C sensitised ovarian cancer cell lines to bortezomib treatment through potent synergistic mechanisms. Combination treatment with bortezomib and I3C led to profound cell cycle arrest and apoptosis as well as disruptions to multiple pathways, including those regulating endoplasmic reticulum stress, cytoskeleton, chemoresistance and carcinogen metabolism. Moreover, I3C and bortezomib co-treatment sensitised ovarian cancer cells to the standard chemotherapeutic agents, cisplatin and carboplatin. Importantly, in vivo studies demonstrated that co-treatment with I3C and bortezomib significantly inhibited tumour growth and reduced tumour weight compared with either drug alone. Together, these data provide a novel rationale for the clinical application of I3C and bortezomib in the treatment of ovarian cancer.
    British Journal of Cancer 12/2011; 106(2):333-43. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The chemokine CXCL12 and its receptor CXCR4 are expressed widely in human cancers, including ovarian cancer, in which they are associated with disease progression at the levels of tumor cell proliferation, invasion, and angiogenesis. Here, we used an immunocompetent mouse model of intraperitoneal papillary epithelial ovarian cancer to show that modulation of the CXCL12/CXCR4 axis in ovarian cancer has multimodal effects on tumor pathogenesis associated with induction of antitumor immunity. siRNA-mediated knockdown of CXCL12 in BR5-1 cells that constitutively express CXCL12 and CXCR4 reduced cell proliferation in vitro, and tumor growth in vivo. Similarly, treatment of BR5-1-derived tumors with AMD3100, a selective CXCR4 antagonist, resulted in increased tumor apoptosis and necrosis, reduction in intraperitoneal dissemination, and selective reduction of intratumoral FoxP3(+) regulatory T cells (Treg). Compared with controls, CXCR4 blockade greatly increased T-cell-mediated antitumor immune responses, conferring a significant survival advantage to AMD3100-treated mice. In addition, the selective effect of CXCR4 antagonism on intratumoral Tregs was associated with both higher CXCR4 expression and increased chemotactic responses to CXCL12, a finding that was also confirmed in a melanoma model. Together, our findings reinforce the concept of a critical role for the CXCL12/CXCR4 axis in ovarian cancer pathogenesis, and they offer a definitive preclinical validation of CXCR4 as a therapeutic target in this disease.
    Cancer Research 08/2011; 71(16):5522-34. · 9.28 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

2k Citations
392.11 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2013
    • University of California, Los Angeles
      • Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
      Los Angeles, California, United States
  • 2009–2013
    • Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
      • • Women’s Cancer Program
      • • Cedars Sinai Medical Center
      Los Angeles, California, United States
  • 2005–2010
    • Harvard Medical School
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
    • Massachusetts General Hospital
      • Department of Pathology
      Boston, MA, United States
  • 2002
    • Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
      New York City, New York, United States