J Alroy

Tufts Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts, United States

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Publications (168)539.15 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Transplantable tumors and cell lines have been developed from pheochromocytomas arising in mice with a heterozygous knockout mutation of the neurofibromatosis gene, Nf1. Nf1 encodes a ras-GTPase-activating protein, neurofibromin, and mouse pheochromocytoma (MPC) cells in primary cultures typically show extensive spontaneous neuronal differentiation that may result from the loss of the remaining wild-type allele and defective regulation of ras signaling. However, all MPC cell lines express neurofibromin, suggesting that preservation of the wild-type allele may be required to permit the propagation of MPC cells in vitro. MPC lines differ from PC12 cells in that they express both endogenous phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase (PNMT) and full-length PNMT reporter constructs. PNMT expression is increased by dexamethasone and by cell-cell contact in suspension cultures. Mouse pheochromocytomas are a new tool for studying genes and signaling pathways that regulate cell growth and differentiation in adrenal medullary neoplasms and are a unique model for studying the regulation of PNMT expression.
    Cell and Tissue Research 01/2001; 302(3):309-20. · 3.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Dilated cardiomyopathy, a lethal disease characterized by left ventricular dilation and systolic dysfunction, is relatively common in humans and other mammals. Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDCM) is a primary myocardial disease of unknown cause and can be a familial disorder. This report describes autosomal recessive IDCM in dogs. It occurs in Portuguese Water Dog (PWD) pups and is manifested by acute, vague clinical signs and sudden death. Affected pups have progressive reduction of fractional shortening that can be demonstrated by echocardiography prior to the development of clinical signs. Furthermore, these pups have low plasma taurine levels when consuming certain diets. Affected pups had dilation of the left ventricle and alterations in the sarcomere appearance, while immunohistochemical and biochemical studies demonstrate an increase in desmin, a cytoskeleton protein. The clinical and morphologic findings of IDCM in PWDs are distinct from those reported in adult IDCM. Finally, the clinical and echocardiographic manifestations were reversible in some pups following oral taurine supplementation for 2 months. These results suggest that IDCM in PWDs is correlated with low plasma taurine levels.
    American Journal of Medical Genetics 12/2000; 95(1):57-66.
  • Source
    C D Warren, J Alroy
    Journal of veterinary diagnostic investigation: official publication of the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians, Inc 12/2000; 12(6):483-96. · 1.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Dilated cardiomyopathy, a lethal disease characterized by left ventricular dilation and systolic dysfunction, is relatively common in humans and other mammals. Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDCM) is a primary myocardial disease of unknown cause and can be a familial disorder. This report describes autosomal recessive IDCM in dogs. It occurs in Portuguese Water Dog (PWD) pups and is manifested by acute, vague clinical signs and sudden death. Affected pups have progressive reduction of fractional shortening that can be demonstrated by echocardiography prior to the development of clinical signs. Furthermore, these pups have low plasma taurine levels when consuming certain diets. Affected pups had dilation of the left ventricle and alterations in the sarcomere appearance, while immunohistochemical and biochemical studies demonstrate an increase in desmin, a cytoskeleton protein. The clinical and morphologic findings of IDCM in PWDs are distinct from those reported in adult IDCM. Finally, the clinical and echocardiographic manifestations were reversible in some pups following oral taurine supplementation for 2 months. These results suggest that IDCM in PWDs is correlated with low plasma taurine levels. Am. J. Med. Genet. 95:57–66, 2000. © 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
    American Journal of Medical Genetics 11/2000; 95(1):57 - 66.
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    ABSTRACT: The acid beta-galactosidase cDNA of Portuguese Water dogs was isolated and sequenced. The entire coding region of the gene consists of 2004 nucleotides encoding a protein of 668 amino acids. Its encoding sequence indicates approximately 86.5% identity at the nucleotide level and about 81% identity at the amino acid level with the encoding region of the human acid beta-galactosidase gene. The deduced amino acid sequence contains a 24-amino-acid putative signal sequence, six possible glycosylation sites, and seven cysteine residues. A homozygous recessive mutation, causing canine GM1-gangliosidosis, was identified at nucleotide G200-->A in exon 2 resulting in an Arg60-->His (mutation R60H) amino acid substitution. The mutation creates a new restriction enzyme site for Pml1. Genotyping 115 dog samples for this acid beta-galactosidase gene alteration readily distinguished affected homozygous recessives (n=5), heterozygous carriers (n=50) and normal homozygotes (n=60). DNA mutation analysis provided a method more specific than enzyme assay of beta-galactosidase for determination of carriers.
    Journal of Inherited Metabolic Disease 09/2000; 23(6):593-606. · 4.07 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mutations in the lysosomal acid beta-galactosidase (EC 3.2.1.23) underlie two different disorders: GM1 gangliosidosis, which involves the nervous system and visceral organs to varying extents, and Morquio's syndrome type B (Morquio B disease), which is a skeletal-connective tissue disease without any CNS symptoms. This article shows that transduction of human GM1 gangliosidosis fibroblasts with retrovirus vectors encoding the human acid beta-galactosidase cDNA leads to complete correction of the enzymatic deficiency. The newly synthesized enzyme is correctly processed and targeted to the lysosomes in transduced cells. Cross-correction experiments using retrovirus-modified cells as enzyme donors showed, however, that the human enzyme is transferred at low efficiencies. Experiments using a different retrovirus vector carrying the human cDNA confirmed this observation. Transduction of human GM1 fibroblasts and mouse NIH 3T3 cells with a retrovirus vector encoding the mouse beta-galactosidase cDNA resulted in high levels of enzymatic activity. Furthermore, the mouse enzyme was found to be transferred to human cells at high efficiency. Enzyme activity measurements in medium conditioned by genetically modified cells suggest that the human beta-galactosidase enzyme is less efficiently released to the extracellular space than its mouse counterpart. This study suggests that lysosomal enzymes, contrary to the generalized perception in the field of gene therapy, may differ significantly in their properties and provides insights for design of future gene therapy interventions in acid beta-galactosidase deficiency.
    Human Gene Therapy 04/2000; 11(5):715-27. · 4.02 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Inborn metabolic errors causing lysosomal storage, such as beta-galactosidase deficiency (G(M1) gangliosidosis [G(M1)]), have well-recognized effects on cellular function and morphology. In some classically "neuronal" storage diseases, including G(M1), neuroradiologic observations of infants have suggested a delay in myelination on the basis of persistently "immature" signal intensities monitored over time. We sought to evaluate in a semiquantitative fashion the pattern and degree of myelination in two infantile G(M1) patients, one boy and one girl, autopsied at 15 months of age. We assigned myelination degrees for defined sites on an ordinal scale of 0 to 4, and compared them to published population-based values for autopsied infants. In both patients, earlier-myelinating structures were comparable in development to that expected for postconceptional age, whereas later-myelinating structures were delayed. These data correlate well with the neuroradiologic diagnosis of myelination delay in these infants and suggest that the metabolic defect has a primary influence on myelin development, in addition to effects related to neuronal storage. Furthermore, our analysis by light and electron microscopy and lectin histochemistry of both CNS and systemic tissues, several of which had not been described, add to the understanding of the stored material in different cell types.
    Pediatric and Developmental Pathology 12/1999; 3(1):73-86. · 0.86 Impact Factor
  • Source
    J Alroy, M Haskins, D E Birk
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    ABSTRACT: The presence of cloudy corneas is a prominent feature of mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) types I and VI, but not MPS IIIA or IIIB. The cause of corneal cloudiness in MPS I and VI is speculative. Transparency of the cornea is dependent on the uniform diameter and the regular spacing and arrangement of the collagen fibrils within the stroma. Alterations in the spacing of collagen fibrils in a variety of conditions including corneal edema, scars, and macular corneal dystrophy is clinically manifested as corneal opacity. The purpose of this study was to compare the structural organization of the stromal extracellular matrix of normal corneas with that of MPS corneas. The size and arrangement of collagen fibrils in cloudy corneas from patients with MPS I were examined. The alterations observed were an increased mean fibril diameter with a broader distribution in the MPS corneas. The MPS I corneas also had altered fibril spacing and more irregular packing compared with normal control corneas. The clear corneas of patients with MPS IIIA and IIIB also showed increases in mean fibril diameter and fibril spacing. However, there was less variation indicating more regularity than seen in MPS I. In addition, corneas from cat models of certain MPS were compared to the human corneas. Cats with MPS I and VI, as well as normal control cats, were examined. Structural alterations comparable to those seen in human MPS corneas were seen in MPS I and VI cats relative to normal clear corneas. The findings suggest that cloudy corneas in MPS I and VI are in part a consequence of structural alterations in the corneal stroma, including abnormal spacing, size, and arrangement of collagen fibrils.
    Experimental Eye Research 06/1999; 68(5):523-30. · 3.03 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology - J NEUROPATHOL EXP NEUROL. 01/1999; 58(5).
  • I Leav, J E McNeal, J Ziar, J Alroy
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    ABSTRACT: To gain insight into autocrine/paracrine mechanisms that may influence normal and abnormal growth of the human prostate, we studied the immunohistochemical localization of transforming growth factor alpha (TGF-alpha) and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFr) in fetal, neonatal, prepubertal, and young adult glands. Results were compared with findings in specimens of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), dysplasia (prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia--PIN), and carcinoma. EGFr was strongly and exclusively expressed in fetal basal cells, whereas TGF-alpha was localized in these and secretory cells as well as in differentiating smooth muscle cells. In neonatal and prepubertal glands, EGFr continued to be found only in basal cells, whereas TGF-alpha was now present in smooth muscle and infrequently in secretory cells. In the normal adult prostate, the receptor was strictly localized in basal cells and in the lateral plasma membranes of secretory cells, whereas its ligand was exclusively expressed in smooth muscle. This pattern persisted in PBH, but both EGFr and TGF-alpha staining appeared to be enhanced in their respective cellular compartments. Irrespective of grade, in dysplasia diffuse-moderate EGFr and strong TGF-alpha staining were both present in a majority of secretory cells. Similarly, most cells in Gleason grade 3 and 4 carcinomas expressed both EGFr and TGF-alpha. Our findings suggest that an unregulated paracrine mode of growth attends the development of BPH, whereas malignant transformation and progression involves autocrine/paracrine mechanisms reminiscent of those found in the developing prostate.
    Human Pathlogy 08/1998; 29(7):668-75. · 2.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Classical late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (LINCL; CLN2) is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder of childhood characterized by seizures, loss of vision, and progressive motor and mental deterioration. The hallmark of this disease is the accumulation of enlarged, secondary lysosomes packed with curvilinear bodies in cells of affected individuals. The biochemical basis of LINCL remains unknown and there is no treatment effective in delaying the progression of this fatal disorder. During a genome-wide search using a set of highly polymorphic markers and 15 affected individuals from 7 multi-affected families, we obtained evidence for linkage of the LINCL gene CLN2 with markers on chromosome 11p15.5. We then genotyped patients and all available family members, including 8 single-affected families, for markers spanning 15 cM of 11p15.5. We obtained a maximum two-point LOD score of 6.16 at 0 = 0.00 at the marker locus D11S2362. Multipoint analysis yielded a maximum LOD score of 6.90 localized to the same marker. Using haplotype analysis, we localized CLN2 to a minimum candidate region of 11 cM flanked by marker loci D11S4046 on the telomeric side and D11S1996 on the centromeric side. Additionally, we present data suggesting that the gene underlying a variant LINCL subtype found in Costa Rica maps to the region defined by the CLN6 locus on chromosome 15q21-23. The mapping of these two LINCL loci provides a genetic basis for understanding the clinical heterogeneity observed in this group of diseases.
    Neurogenetics 04/1998; 1(3):217-22. · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Several animal models have been developed for the mucopolysaccharidoses (MPSs), a group of lysosomal storage disorders caused by lysosomal hydrolase deficiencies that disrupt the catabolism of glycosaminoglycans (GAG). Among the MPS, the MPS-III (Sanfilippo) syndromes lacked an animal counterpart until recently. In this investigation of caprine MPS-IIID, the clinical, biochemical, morphological, and immunohistochemical studies revealed severe and mild phenotypes like those observed in human MPS III syndromes. Both forms of caprine MPS IIID result from a nonsense mutation and consequent deficiency of lysosomal N-acetylglucosamine 6-sulfatase (G6S) activity and are associated with tissue storage and urinary excretion of heparan sulfate (HS). Using special stains, immunohistochemistry, and electron microscopy, secondary lysosomes filled with GAG were identified in most tissues from affected goats. Primary neuronal accumulation of HS and the secondary storage of gangliosides were observed in the central nervous system (CNS) of these animals. In addition, morphological changes in the CNS such as neuritic expansions and other neuronal alterations that may have functional significance were also seen. The spectrum of lesions was greater in the severe form of caprine MPS IIID and included mild cartilaginous, bony, and corneal lesions. The more pronounced neurological deficits in the severe form were partly related to a greater extent of CNS dysmyelination. These findings demonstrate that caprine MPS IIID is a suitable animal model for the investigation of therapeutic strategies for MPS III syndromes.
    Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology 03/1998; 57(2):148-57. · 4.35 Impact Factor
  • R. D. Folkerth, I. Bhan, J. Alroy
    Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology - J NEUROPATHOL EXP NEUROL. 01/1998; 57(5).
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    ABSTRACT: Mucopolysaccharidosis IIID (MPS IIID) is one of the rarest of the MPS-III syndromes. To date, the clinical manifestations of 10 patients have been reported, the deficient N-acetylglucosamine 6-sulfatase (G6S) enzyme has been purified, and the G6S gene has been cloned, sequenced and localized. However, morphological manifestations of this condition have not been reported and the pathogenesis of the severe neurological deficits remains an enigma. In this paper we describe and correlate the clinical, biochemical and pathological observations for 2 cases of MPS IIID. We used monoclonal antibodies against heparan sulfate (HS) and GM2-ganglioside, thin layer chromatography, mass spectrometry, and morphological techniques to demonstrate the nature and the distribution of the uncatabolized substrates. The majority of the cells in various tissues showed morphological changes expected with lysosomal storage of HS. The central nervous system (CNS) was most severely affected because of the secondary storage of GM2 and GM3 gangliosides in addition to the primary accumulation of HS. The extent as well as the distribution of the diverse storage materials varied within and among different neurons as observed in MPS-III A, B, and C syndromes. This study supports the hypothesis that the neurological dysfunction and neurodegeneration common to the Sanfilippo syndromes is, in part, due to the secondary metabolic perturbations induced by HS accumulation.
    Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology 11/1997; 56(10):1158-67. · 4.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Experimental and clinical evidence suggests that tumour angiogenesis plays a role in the tendency for certain neoplasms, including cutaneous melanomas, to metastasize. We evaluated whether tumour vasculature is associated with the rate of metastases in patients with melanoma of the choroid or ciliary body. The study was based on a group of 63 patients enucleated between 1976 and 1984 with paraffin-embedded tissue blocks available for sectioning and with known survival status as of December 1988. Vessel endothelial cells were highlighted with Ulex europaeus agglutinin I (UEA-I) conjugated with peroxidase. UEA-I-stained microvessels were counted at varying levels in the tumour (apex, centre and base) without knowledge of patient outcome. Patients with (n = 30) and without (n = 33) metastases had similar total vessel counts (P = 0.31). There was no evidence of greater vessel density in tumours that had metastasized, by level within the tumour. Similar results were obtained in multivariate analyses. Findings of this study suggest that tumour microvessel density is unrelated to patient survival in uveal melanoma.
    Melanoma Research 07/1997; 7(3):237-42. · 2.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A case of collecting-duct carcinoma associated with abnormal urine cytology is described. The finding of an abnormal cytologic examination, yet not typical of transitional-cell carcinoma (TCC), suggests that a close relationship between the cytology and histology of this uncommon malignancy may be demonstrated.
    Diagnostic Cytopathology 04/1997; 16(3):258-61. · 1.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mucopolysaccharidosis IIID (MPS-IIID) is the rarest of the MPS-III syndromes. It is caused by deficient activity of lysosomal N-acetylglucosamine-6-sulfatase (G6S). To date, the clinical and biochemical features of seven patients with MPS-IIID have been reported, but no biopsy or autopsy findings have been described. The purpose of this report is to define the ultrastructure of affected cells seen in a skin biopsy from a 14-year-old boy. The child presented with progressive mental deterioration, hyperactivity and mild to moderate dysmorphism. The diagnosis of a mucopolysaccharidosis was suggested, but the initial urine analyses were negative for elevated mucopolysaccharides, and only the third analysis showed abnormal excretion of heparan sulfate. Because of the diagnostic difficulties posed by this case, a skin biopsy was performed for morphological and biochemical studies. Numerous vacuoles were noted in Schwann cells, fibroblasts, smooth muscle cells, eccrine gland and ductal epithelium in resin-embedded sections stained with toluidine blue. Ultrastructurally, many lysosomes were distended with abundant, fibrillar material. Occasionally, lamellated membranous structures were present within the same lysosomes. These findings are consistent with those seen in other forms of MPS, in which the lysosomal storage occurs predominantly, but not exclusively, in mesenchymal cells. Furthermore, deficient activity of G6S was confirmed in cultured skin fibroblasts. This study demonstrates that electron microscopy of skin biopsies is a useful method for identification of patients with clinical features of MPS-IIID whether or not heparan sulfaturia is present.
    Acta Neuropathologica 03/1997; 93(2):210-3. · 9.73 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology - J NEUROPATHOL EXP NEUROL. 01/1997; 56(5).
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    ABSTRACT: Batten's disease is a genetic neurodegenerative disease of childhood. Its hallmarks are retinitis pigmentosa and neuronal degeneration. As some types of photoreceptor death in mice are mediated by apoptosis, we investigated whether apoptosis is responsible for retinal and neuronal degeneration in the late infantile and juvenile forms of Batten's disease. Using the terminal dUDP nick end-labeling (TUNEL) staining method, we detected apoptotic neuronal cells in brain from patients and a canine model and in brain and retina from an ovine model for Batten's disease. We confirmed apoptosis by flow cytometry, electron microscopy, and DNA laddering. This is the first inherited neurodegenerative disease involving brain and retina in which apoptosis has been established as the mechanism of neuronal and photoreceptor cell death in both humans and animal models.
    Journal of Neurochemistry 09/1996; 67(2):677-83. · 3.97 Impact Factor
  • A Prasad, E M Kaye, J Alroy
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    ABSTRACT: In this report, we have summarized our 9-year experience of over 100 proven cases of lysosomal storage disease using electron microscopic evaluation of skin biopsies as a screening tool. The skin biopsy was very specific in establishing the diagnosis in only two disorders, namely neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis and mucolipidosis IV. Although the biopsy was not diagnostic in other categories of storage diseases, it proved to be highly sensitive and provided valuable clues to direct further investigations on the basis of morphologic appearance of stored material and the cell type affected. Only in two cases of biochemically proven lysosomal storage disease was the morphologic diagnosis unable to be confirmed. We have compared the cost of screening for storage disorders using skin biopsy with the cost of performing multiple lysosomal enzyme assays. Our findings indicate that the skin biopsy, although more expensive than a single enzyme assay, provides an efficient, rapid, cost-effective tool to screen for more than 35 lysosomal storage disorders.
    Journal of Child Neurology 08/1996; 11(4):301-8. · 1.39 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

2k Citations
539.15 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2004–2011
    • Tufts Medical Center
      • Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2010
    • Texas A&M University
      • Department of Veterinary Pathobiology
      College Station, TX, United States
  • 1981–2010
    • Tufts University
      • • Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases
      • • Department of Dermatology
      Georgia, United States
  • 2000–2008
    • New York University
      • Department of Neurology
      New York City, NY, United States
  • 1983–2008
    • University of Massachusetts Boston
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 1998–2001
    • Michigan State University
      • • Department of Human Pathology
      • • Department of Pathobiology
      East Lansing, MI, United States
  • 1995
    • Brigham and Women's Hospital
      • Department of Pathology
      Boston, MA, United States
    • University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
      • College of Medicine
      Oklahoma City, OK, United States
    • University of New Hampshire
      • Nutritional Sciences
      Hampshire, IL, United States
  • 1988–1995
    • Tel Aviv University
      • Department of Pathology
      Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, Israel
  • 1994
    • Beverly Hospital, Boston MA
      Beverly, Massachusetts, United States
  • 1991
    • Harvard Medical School
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 1988–1990
    • Massachusetts General Hospital
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 1978–1981
    • Rush Medical College
      Chicago, Illinois, United States