[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Functional decline of the hematopoietic system occurs during aging and contributes to clinical consequences, including reduced competence of adaptive immunity and increased incidence of myeloid diseases. This has been linked to aging of the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) compartment and has implications for clinical hematopoietic cell transplantation as prolonged periods of T-cell deficiency follow transplantation of adult mobilized peripheral blood (PB), the primary transplant source. Here, we examined the gene expression profiles of young and aged HSCs from human cord blood and adult mobilized PB, respectively, and found that Wnt signaling genes are differentially expressed between young and aged human HSCs, with less activation of Wnt signaling in aged HSCs. Utilizing the OP9-DL1 in vitro co-culture system to promote T-cell development under stable Notch signaling conditions, we found that Wnt signaling activity is important for T-lineage differentiation. Examination of Wnt signaling components and target gene activation in young and aged human HSCs during T-lineage differentiation revealed an association between reduced Wnt signal transduction, increasing age, and impaired or delayed T-cell differentiation. This defect in Wnt signal activation of aged HSCs appeared to occur in the early T-progenitor cell subset derived during in vitro T-lineage differentiation. Our results reveal that reduced Wnt signaling activity may play a role in the age-related intrinsic defects of aged HSCs and early hematopoietic progenitors and suggest that manipulation of this pathway could contribute to the end goal of improving T-cell generation and immune reconstitution following clinical transplantation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) with nucleophosmin-1 (NPM1) mutation is a major subtype of AML. The NPM1 mutation induces a myeloproliferative disorder, but evidence indicates that other insults are necessary for the development of AML. We utilised microRNA microarrays and functional assays to determine if microRNA dysregulation could be involved in the pathogenesis of in NPM1 mutated (NPM1mut)-AML.
We used a stringent locked nucleic acid (LNA) based microRNA microarray platform to profile bone marrow samples of patients with normal karyotype AML. A panel of five microRNAs dichotomised AML patients according to their NPM1 mutational status. miR-10a, let-7b and let-7c were significantly over-expressed, while miR-130a and miR-335 were under-expressed in NPM1mut-AML when compared to NPM1wildtype-AML. Of these, miR-10a is the most differentially expressed in NPM1mut-AML versus NPM1wildtype-AML (> 10 fold higher as confirmed by qRT-PCR). To investigate the functions of miR-10a, the OCI-AML3 cell line was utilised, which is the only commercially available cell line bearing NPM1mut. OCI-AML3 cells were firstly demonstrated to have a similarly high miR-10a expression to primary NPM1mut-AML patient samples. Inhibition of miR-10a expression by miRCURY LNA Inhibitors (Exiqon) in these cells resulted in increased cell death as assessed by MTS, cell cycle and Annexin-V assays and reduced clonogenic capacity, indicative of an involvement in leukaemic cell survival. In silico filtering of bioinformatically predicted targets of miR-10a identified a number of potential mRNA targets with annotated functions in haematopoiesis, cell growth and apoptosis. Lucferase reporter assays confirmed a number of these putative tumorogenic genes that are miR-10a suppressible including KLF4 and RB1CC1. This provides a potential mechanism for the pathogenic role of miR-10a in NPM1mut-AML.
This study provides, for the first time, in vitro evidence of a pro-survival role of miR-10a in NPM1mut-AML, that it may contribute to the pathogenesis of NPM1mut-AML and identifies putative tumorogenic targets.
Molecular Cancer 02/2012; 11:8. · 5.13 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the relatively short period of time since their discovery, microRNAs have been shown to control many important cellular functions such as cell differentiation, growth, proliferation and apoptosis. In addition, microRNAs have been demonstrated as key drivers of many malignancies and can function as either tumour suppressors or oncogenes. The haematopoietic system is not outside the realm of microRNA control with microRNAs controlling aspects of stem cell and progenitor self-renewal and differentiation, with many, if not all, haematological disorders associated with aberrant microRNA expression and function. In this review, we focus on the current understanding of microRNA control of haematopoiesis and detail the evidence for the contribution and clinical relevance of aberrant microRNA function to the characteristic block of differentiation in acute myeloid leukaemia.
Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine 01/2012; 16(5):978-87. · 4.75 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs are a class of small non-protein coding RNAs that play an important role in the regulation of gene expression. Most studies on the identification of microRNA-mRNA pairs utilize the correlation coefficient as a measure of association. The use of correlation coefficient is appropriate if the expression data are available for several conditions and, for a given condition, both microRNA and mRNA expression profiles are obtained from the same set of individuals. However, there are many instances where one of the requirements is not satisfied. Therefore, there is a need for new measures of association to identify the microRNA-mRNA pairs of interest and we present two such measures. The first measure requires expression data for multiple conditions but, for a given condition, the microRNA and mRNA expression may be obtained from different individuals. The new measure, unlike the correlation coefficient, is suitable for analyzing large data sets which are obtained by combining several independent studies on microRNAs and mRNAs. Our second measure is able to handle expression data that correspond to just two conditions but, for a given condition, the microRNA and mRNA expression must be obtained from the same set of individuals. This measure, unlike the correlation coefficient, is appropriate for analyzing data sets with a small number of conditions. We apply our new measures of association to multiple myeloma data sets, which cannot be analyzed using the correlation coefficient, and identify several microRNA-mRNA pairs involved in apoptosis and cell proliferation.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(1):e29612. · 3.53 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are post-transcriptional regulators of mRNA expression and are involved in numerous cellular processes. Consequently, miRNAs are an important component of gene regulatory networks and an improved understanding of miRNAs will further our knowledge of these networks. There is a many-to-many relationship between miRNAs and mRNAs because a single miRNA targets multiple mRNAs and a single mRNA is targeted by multiple miRNAs. However, most of the current methods for the identification of regulatory miRNAs and their target mRNAs ignore this biological observation and focus on miRNA-mRNA pairs.
We propose a two-step method for the identification of many-to-many relationships between miRNAs and mRNAs. In the first step, we obtain miRNA and mRNA clusters using a combination of miRNA-target mRNA prediction algorithms and microarray expression data. In the second step, we determine the associations between miRNA clusters and mRNA clusters based on changes in miRNA and mRNA expression profiles. We consider the miRNA-mRNA clusters with statistically significant associations to be potentially regulatory and, therefore, of biological interest.
Our method reduces the interactions between several hundred miRNAs and several thousand mRNAs to a few miRNA-mRNA groups, thereby facilitating a more meaningful biological analysis and a more targeted experimental validation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Diagnostic accuracy of lymphoma, a heterogeneous cancer, is essential for patient management. Several ancillary tests including immunophenotyping, and sometimes cytogenetics and PCR are required to aid histological diagnosis. In this proof of principle study, gene expression microarray was evaluated as a single platform test in the differential diagnosis of common lymphoma subtypes and reactive lymphadenopathy (RL) in lymph node biopsies.
116 lymph node biopsies diagnosed as RL, classical Hodgkin lymphoma (cHL), diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) or follicular lymphoma (FL) were assayed by mRNA microarray. Three supervised classification strategies (global multi-class, local binary-class and global binary-class classifications) using diagonal linear discriminant analysis was performed on training sets of array data and the classification error rates calculated by leave one out cross-validation. The independent error rate was then evaluated by testing the identified gene classifiers on an independent (test) set of array data.
The binary classifications provided prediction accuracies, between a subtype of interest and the remaining samples, of 88.5%, 82.8%, 82.8% and 80.0% for FL, cHL, DLBCL, and RL respectively. Identified gene classifiers include LIM domain only-2 (LMO2), Chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 22 (CCL22) and Cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor-3 (CDK3) specifically for FL, cHL and DLBCL subtypes respectively.
This study highlights the ability of gene expression profiling to distinguish lymphoma from reactive conditions and classify the major subtypes of lymphoma in a diagnostic setting. A cost-effective single platform "mini-chip" assay could, in principle, be developed to aid the quick diagnosis of lymph node biopsies with the potential to incorporate other pathological entities into such an assay.
BMC Medical Genomics 03/2011; 4:27. · 3.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs are short ribonucleic acids (RNAs) that play an important role in many aspects of cellular biology such as differentiation and apoptosis, due to their role in the regulation of gene expression. Using microRNA microarrays, we characterized the microRNA gene expression of 27 patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) with normal cytogenetics, focusing on the microRNAs differentially expressed between the M1 and M5 French-American-British (FAB) subtypes. An accurate delineation of these two AML entities was observed based on the expression of 12 microRNAs. We hypothesized that these microRNAs may potentially be involved in the differentiation block of M1 blasts and consequently monocytic differentiation. Using publically available mRNA data and microRNA target prediction software, we identified several key myeloid factors that may be targeted by our candidate microRNAs. The expression changes of the candidate microRNAs during monocytic differentiation of AML cell lines treated with Vitamin D and phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate were examined. All six candidate microRNAs were significantly down-regulated over the time course by quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction suggesting a link between these microRNAs and monocytic differentiation. To further characterize these microRNAs, we confirmed by luciferase assays that these microRNA target several key myeloid factors such as MAFB, IRF8, and KLF4 identifying a possible mechanism for the control of differentiation by these microRNAs.
American Journal of Hematology 08/2010; 86(1):2-11. · 4.00 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are recently discovered short non-coding RNA molecules that negatively regulate messenger RNA (mRNA) translation to protein. Their discovery heralds a novel mechanism of post-transcriptional gene regulation and has lead to a cascade of studies aimed at identifying how miRNA dysregulation may contribute to disease. Recent studies have provided indisputable evidence for a role of miRNAs in normal haematopoiesis adding a further layer of complexity to the regulatory process. Leukaemia and lymphoma are characterised by dysregulation of survival and differentiation in haematopoietic progenitor cells. There are several lines of evidence supporting the notion that miRNA dysfunction is contributory, whether by extrapolation from miRNA-mediated oncogenesis in other disorders, by miRNA profiling, or by in vivo and in vitro functional studies of miRNAs in haematological malignancies. Further work is underway to delineate the role of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of malignant blood disorders, with the eventual hope that this will aid in the diagnosis and the development of potential novel cures for such diseases, many of which still have an unacceptable prognosis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Over the past decade, a class of small RNA molecules called microRNAs (miRNAs) has been shown to regulate gene expression at the post-transcription stage. While early work focused on the identification of miRNAs using a combination of experimental and computational techniques, subsequent studies have focused on identification of miRNA-target mRNA pairs as each miRNA can have hundreds of mRNA targets. The experimental validation of some miRNAs as oncogenic has provided further motivation for research in this area. In this article we propose an odds-ratio (OR) statistic for identification of regulatory miRNAs. It is based on integrative analysis of matched miRNA and mRNA time-course microarray data. The OR-statistic was used for (i) identification of miRNAs with regulatory potential, (ii) identification of miRNA-target mRNA pairs and (iii) identification of time lags between changes in miRNA expression and those of its target mRNAs. We applied the OR-statistic to a cancer data set and identified a small set of miRNAs that were negatively correlated to mRNAs. A literature survey revealed that some of the miRNAs that were predicted to be regulatory, were indeed oncogenic or tumor suppressors. Finally, some of the predicted miRNA targets have been shown to be experimentally valid.
Nucleic Acids Research 04/2009; 37(8):e60. · 8.81 Impact Factor