[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Using a genome-scale, lentivirally delivered shRNA library, we performed massively parallel pooled shRNA screens in 216 cancer cell lines to identify genes that are required for cell proliferation and/or viability. Cell line dependencies on 11,000 genes were interrogated by 5 shRNAs per gene. The proliferation effect of each shRNA in each cell line was assessed by transducing a population of 11M cells with one shRNA-virus per cell and determining the relative enrich-ment or depletion of each of the 54,000 shRNAs after 16 population doublings using Next Generation Sequencing. All the cell lines were screened using standardized conditions to best assess differential genetic dependencies across cell lines. When combined with genomic characterization of these cell lines, this dataset facilitates the linkage of genetic dependencies with specific cellular contexts (e.g., gene mutations or cell lineage). To enable such comparisons, we developed and provided a bioinformatics tool to identify linear and nonlinear correlations between these features.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aneuploidy, defined as an abnormal number of chromosomes, is a hallmark of cancer. Paradoxically, aneuploidy generally has a negative impact on cell growth and fitness in nontransformed cells. In this work, we review recent progress in identifying how aneuploidy leads to genomic and chromosomal instability, how cells can adapt to the deleterious effects of aneuploidy, and how aneuploidy contributes to tumorigenesis in different genetic contexts. Finally, we also discuss how aneuploidy might be a target for anticancer therapies.
Cold Spring Harbor perspectives in biology 09/2014; · 8.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Centrosome amplification is a hallmark of cancer. However, despite significant progress in recent years, we are still far from understanding how centrosome amplification affects tumorigenesis. Boveri's hypothesis formulated more than 100 years ago was that aneuploidy induced by centrosome amplification promoted tumorigenesis. Although the hypothesis remains appealing 100 years later, it is also clear that the role of centrosome amplification in cancer is more complex than initially thought. Here, we review how centrosome abnormalities are generated in cancer and the mechanisms cells employ to adapt to centrosome amplification, in particular centrosome clustering. We discuss the different mechanisms by which centrosome amplification could contribute to tumour progression and the new advances in the development of therapies that target cells with extra centrosomes.
Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences. 09/2014; 369(1650).
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetically unstable tetraploid cells can promote tumorigenesis. Recent estimates suggest that ∼37% of human tumors have undergone a genome-doubling event during their development. This potentially oncogenic effect of tetraploidy is countered by a p53-dependent barrier to proliferation. However, the cellular defects and corresponding signaling pathways that trigger growth suppression in tetraploid cells are not known. Here, we combine RNAi screening and in vitro evolution approaches to demonstrate that cytokinesis failure activates the Hippo tumor suppressor pathway in cultured cells, as well as in naturally occurring tetraploid cells in vivo. Induction of the Hippo pathway is triggered in part by extra centrosomes, which alter small G protein signaling and activate LATS2 kinase. LATS2 in turn stabilizes p53 and inhibits the transcriptional regulators YAP and TAZ. These findings define an important tumor suppression mechanism and uncover adaptive mechanisms potentially available to nascent tumor cells that bypass this inhibitory regulation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Down syndrome confers a 20-fold increased risk of B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL), and polysomy 21 is the most frequent somatic aneuploidy among all B-ALLs. Yet the mechanistic links between chromosome 21 triplication and B-ALL remain undefined. Here we show that germline triplication of only 31 genes orthologous to human chromosome 21q22 confers mouse progenitor B cell self renewal in vitro, maturation defects in vivo and B-ALL with either the BCR-ABL fusion protein or CRLF2 with activated JAK2. Chromosome 21q22 triplication suppresses histone H3 Lys27 trimethylation (H3K27me3) in progenitor B cells and B-ALLs, and 'bivalent' genes with both H3K27me3 and H3K4me3 at their promoters in wild-type progenitor B cells are preferentially overexpressed in triplicated cells. Human B-ALLs with polysomy 21 are distinguished by their overexpression of genes marked with H3K27me3 in multiple cell types. Overexpression of HMGN1, a nucleosome remodeling protein encoded on chromosome 21q22 (refs. 3,4,5), suppresses H3K27me3 and promotes both B cell proliferation in vitro and B-ALL in vivo.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Centrosome amplification has long been recognized as a feature of human tumours; however, its role in tumorigenesis remains unclear. Centrosome amplification is poorly tolerated by non-transformed cells and, in the absence of selection, extra centrosomes are spontaneously lost. Thus, the high frequency of centrosome amplification, particularly in more aggressive tumours, raises the possibility that extra centrosomes could, in some contexts, confer advantageous characteristics that promote tumour progression. Using a three-dimensional model system and other approaches to culture human mammary epithelial cells, we find that centrosome amplification triggers cell invasion. This invasive behaviour is similar to that induced by overexpression of the breast cancer oncogene ERBB2 (ref. 4) and indeed enhances invasiveness triggered by ERBB2. Our data indicate that, through increased centrosomal microtubule nucleation, centrosome amplification increases Rac1 activity, which disrupts normal cell-cell adhesion and promotes invasion. These findings demonstrate that centrosome amplification, a structural alteration of the cytoskeleton, can promote features of malignant transformation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Excluding 53BP1 from chromatin is required to attenuate the DNA damage response during mitosis, yet the functional relevance and regulation of this exclusion are unclear. Here we show that 53BP1 is phosphorylated during mitosis on two residues, T1609 and S1618, located in its well-conserved ubiquitination-dependent recruitment (UDR) motif. Phosphorylating these sites blocks the interaction of the UDR motif with mononuclesomes containing ubiquitinated histone H2A and impedes binding of 53BP1 to mitotic chromatin. Ectopic recruitment of 53BP1-T1609A/S1618A to mitotic DNA lesions was associated with significant mitotic defects that could be reversed by inhibiting nonhomologous end-joining. We also reveal that protein phosphatase complex PP4C/R3β dephosphorylates T1609 and S1618 to allow the recruitment of 53BP1 to chromatin in G1 phase. Our results identify key sites of 53BP1 phosphorylation during mitosis, identify the counteracting phosphatase complex that restores the potential for DDR during interphase, and establish the physiological importance of this regulation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent genome sequencing studies have identified several classes of complex genomic rearrangements that appear to be derived from a single catastrophic event. These discoveries identify ways that genomes can be altered in single large jumps rather than by many incremental steps. Here we compare and contrast these phenomena and examine the evidence that they arise "all at once." We consider the impact of massive chromosomal change for the development of diseases such as cancer and for evolution more generally. Finally, we summarize current models for underlying mechanisms and discuss strategies for testing these models.
Genes & development 12/2013; 27(23):2513-30. · 12.64 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The role of Cdc42 and its regulation during cytokinesis is not well understood. Using biochemical and imaging approaches in budding yeast, we demonstrate that Cdc42 activation peaks during the G1/S transition and during anaphase but drops during mitotic exit and cytokinesis. Cdc5/Polo kinase is an important upstream cell cycle regulator that suppresses Cdc42 activity. Failure to down-regulate Cdc42 during mitotic exit impairs the normal localization of key cytokinesis regulators-Iqg1 and Inn1-at the division site, and results in an abnormal septum. The effects of Cdc42 hyperactivation are largely mediated by the Cdc42 effector p21-activated kinase Ste20. Inhibition of Cdc42 and related Rho guanosine triphosphatases may be a general feature of cytokinesis in eukaryotes.
The Journal of Cell Biology 07/2013; 202(2):231-40. · 9.69 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Molecular motors play critical roles in the formation of mitotic spindles, either through controlling the stability of individual microtubules, or by crosslinking and sliding microtubule arrays. Kinesin-8 motors are best known for their regulatory roles in controlling microtubule dynamics. They contain microtubule-destabilizing activities, and restrict spindle length in a wide variety of cell types and organisms. Here, we report an antiparallel microtubule-sliding activity of the budding yeast kinesin-8, Kip3. The in vivo importance of this sliding activity was established through the identification of complementary Kip3 mutants that separate the sliding activity and microtubule-destabilizing activity. In conjunction with Cin8, a kinesin-5 family member, the sliding activity of Kip3 promotes bipolar spindle assembly and the maintenance of genome stability. We propose a slide-disassemble model where the sliding and destabilizing activity of Kip3 balance during pre-anaphase. This facilitates normal spindle assembly. However, the destabilizing activity of Kip3 dominates in late anaphase, inhibiting spindle elongation and ultimately promoting spindle disassembly.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cellular defects that impair the fidelity of mitosis promote chromosome missegregation and aneuploidy. Increasing evidence reveals that errors in mitosis can also promote the direct and indirect acquisition of DNA damage and chromosome breaks. Consequently, deregulated cell division can devastate the integrity of the normal genome and unleash a variety of oncogenic stimuli that may promote transformation. Recent work has shed light on the mechanisms that link abnormal mitosis with the development of DNA damage, how cells respond to such affronts, and the potential impact on tumorigenesis.
The Journal of Cell Biology 12/2012; 199(6):871-81. · 9.69 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The stereotypical function of kinesin superfamily motors is to transport cargo along microtubules. However, some kinesins also shape the microtubule track by regulating microtubule assembly and disassembly. Recent work has shown that the kinesin-8 family of motors emerge as key regulators of cellular microtubule length. The studied kinesin-8s are highly processive motors that walk towards the microtubule plus-end. Once at plus-ends, they have complex effects on polymer dynamics; kinesin-8s either destabilize or stabilize microtubules, depending on the context. This review focuses on the mechanisms underlying kinesin-8-microtubule interactions and microtubule length control. We compare and contrast kinesin-8s with the other major microtubule-regulating kinesins (kinesin-4 and kinesin-13), to survey the current understanding of the diverse ways that kinesins control microtubule dynamics.
Trends in cell biology 09/2012; 22(11):567-75. · 12.12 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Formin-family proteins promote the assembly of linear actin filaments and are required to generate cellular actin structures, such as actin stress fibers and the cytokinetic actomyosin contractile ring. Many formin proteins are regulated by an autoinhibition mechanism involving intramolecular binding of a Diaphanous inhibitory domain and a Diaphanous autoregulatory domain. However, the activation mechanism for these Diaphanous-related formins (DRFs) is not completely understood. Although small GTPases play an important role in relieving autoinhibition, other factors likely contribute. Here we describe a requirement for the septin Shs1 and the septin-associated kinase Gin4 for the localization and in vivo activity of the budding yeast DRF Bnr1. In budding yeast strains in which the other formin, Bni1, is conditionally inactivated, the loss of Gin4 or Shs1 results in the loss of actin cables and cell death, similar to the loss of Bnr1. The defects in these strains can be suppressed by constitutive activation of Bnr1. Gin4 is involved in both the localization and activation of Bnr1, whereas the septin Shs1 is required for Bnr1 activation but not its localization. Gin4 promotes the activity of Bnr1 independently of the Gin4 kinase activity, and Gin4 lacking its kinase domain binds to the critical localization region of Bnr1. These data reveal novel regulatory links between the actin and septin cytoskeletons.
Molecular biology of the cell 08/2012; 23(20):4041-53. · 5.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cellular wound healing, enabling the repair of membrane damage, is ubiquitous in eukaryotes. One aspect of the wound healing response is the redirection of a polarized cytoskeleton and the secretory machinery to the damage site. Although there has been recent progress in identifying conserved proteins involved in wound healing, the mechanisms linking these components into a coherent response are not defined. Using laser damage in budding yeast, we demonstrate that local cell wall/membrane damage triggers the dispersal of proteins from the site of polarized growth, enabling their accumulation at the wound. We define a protein-kinase-C-dependent mechanism that mediates the destruction of the formin Bni1 and the exocyst component Sec3. This degradation is essential to prevent competition between the site of polarized growth and the wound. Mechanisms to overcome competition from a pre-existing polarized cytoskeleton may be a general feature of effective wound healing in polarized cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Data from human tumors and mouse models suggest that tetraploidy, one example of polyploidy, can promote tumorigenesis. In this issue of Cancer Cell, Davoli and De Lange make important connections between tetraploidy, tumorigenesis, and telomere crisis-a common event during the development of human cancers.
Cancer cell 06/2012; 21(6):712-4. · 25.29 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We describe a computational method that infers tumor purity and malignant cell ploidy directly from analysis of somatic DNA alterations. The method, named ABSOLUTE, can detect subclonal heterogeneity and somatic homozygosity, and it can calculate statistical sensitivity for detection of specific aberrations. We used ABSOLUTE to analyze exome sequencing data from 214 ovarian carcinoma tumor-normal pairs. This analysis identified both pervasive subclonal somatic point-mutations and a small subset of predominantly clonal and homozygous mutations, which were overrepresented in the tumor suppressor genes TP53 and NF1 and in a candidate tumor suppressor gene CDK12. We also used ABSOLUTE to infer absolute allelic copy-number profiles from 3,155 diverse cancer specimens, revealing that genome-doubling events are common in human cancer, likely occur in cells that are already aneuploid, and influence pathways of tumor progression (for example, with recessive inactivation of NF1 being less common after genome doubling). ABSOLUTE will facilitate the design of clinical sequencing studies and studies of cancer genome evolution and intra-tumor heterogeneity.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The involvement of whole-chromosome aneuploidy in tumorigenesis is the subject of debate, in large part because of the lack of insight into underlying mechanisms. Here we identify a mechanism by which errors in mitotic chromosome segregation generate DNA breaks via the formation of structures called micronuclei. Whole-chromosome-containing micronuclei form when mitotic errors produce lagging chromosomes. We tracked the fate of newly generated micronuclei and found that they undergo defective and asynchronous DNA replication, resulting in DNA damage and often extensive fragmentation of the chromosome in the micronucleus. Micronuclei can persist in cells over several generations but the chromosome in the micronucleus can also be distributed to daughter nuclei. Thus, chromosome segregation errors potentially lead to mutations and chromosome rearrangements that can integrate into the genome. Pulverization of chromosomes in micronuclei may also be one explanation for 'chromothripsis' in cancer and developmental disorders, where isolated chromosomes or chromosome arms undergo massive local DNA breakage and rearrangement.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genetic instability, which includes both numerical and structural chromosomal abnormalities, is a hallmark of cancer. Whereas the structural chromosome rearrangements have received substantial attention, the role of whole-chromosome aneuploidy in cancer is much less well-understood. Here we review recent progress in understanding the roles of whole-chromosome aneuploidy in cancer, including the mechanistic causes of aneuploidy, the cellular responses to chromosome gains or losses and how cells might adapt to tolerate these usually detrimental alterations. We also explore the role of aneuploidy in cellular transformation and discuss the possibility of developing aneuploidy-specific therapies.