[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Breast cancer is a heterogeneous disease with various histological features and molecular markers. These are utilized for the prediction of clinical outcome and therapeutic decision making. In addition to well established markers such as HER2 overexpression and estrogen and progesterone receptor (ER and PR) status, chromosomal instability is evolving as an important hallmark of cancers. The HER2/TOP2A locus is of great importance in breast cancer. The copy number variability at this locus has been proposed to be a marker for the degree of chromosomal instability. We therefore developed a Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) assay to evaluate allelic imbalance at the HER2/TOP2A locus in three different entities of primary breast tumors.
Eleven SNPs were carefully selected and detected by real time PCR using DNA extracted from paired (histologically normal and tumor) paraffin-embedded tissues. Primary breast tumors of 44 patients were included, 15 tumors with HER2 overexpression, 16 triple negative tumors, defined by the absence of HER2 overexpression and a negative ER and PR status and 13 ER and PR positive tumors without HER2 overexpression. As controls, histologically normal breast tissues from 10 patients with no breast tumor were included.
Allelic imbalance was observed in 13/15 (87 %) HER2 positive tumors, the remaining 2 being inconclusive. Of the 16 triple negative tumors, 12 (75 %) displayed instability, 3 (19 %) displayed no instability, and 1 was inconclusive. Of the 13 hormone receptor positive tumors, 5 (38 %) displayed allelic imbalance, while 8 did not.
We conclude that the SNP assay is suitable for rapid testing of allelic (im)balance at the HER2/TOP2A locus using paraffin-embedded tissues. Based on allelic imbalance at this locus, both triple negative and ER and PR positive breast tumors can be subcategorized. The clinical relevance of the allelic (im)balance status at the HER2/TOP2A locus in breast cancer is subject of future study.
The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/2086062232155220
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During tumor development, loss of heterozygosity (LOH) often occurs. When LOH is preceded by an oncogene activating mutation, the mutant allele may be further potentiated if the wild-type allele is lost or inactivated. In myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) somatic acquisition of JAK2V617F may be followed by LOH resulting in loss of the wild type allele. The occurrence of LOH in MPN and other proliferative diseases may lead to a further potentiating the mutant allele and thereby increasing morbidity. A real time PCR based SNP profiling assay was developed and validated for LOH detection of the JAK2 region (JAK2LOH). Blood of a cohort of 12 JAK2V617F-positive patients (n=6 25-50% and n=6>50% JAK2V617F) and a cohort of 81 patients suspected of MPN was stored with EDTA and subsequently used for validation. To generate germ-line profiles, non-neoplastic formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue from each patient was analyzed. Results of the SNP assay were compared to those of an established Short Tandem Repeat (STR) assay. Both assays revealed JAK2LOH in 1/6 patients with 25-50% JAK2V617F. In patients with >50% JAK2V617F, JAK2LOH was detected in 6/6 by the SNP assay and 5/6 patients by the STR assay. Of the 81 patients suspected of MPN, 18 patients carried JAK2V617F. Both the SNP and STR assay demonstrated the occurrence of JAK2LOH in 5 of them. In the 63 JAK2V617F-negative patients, no JAK2LOH was observed by SNP and STR analyses. The presented SNP assay reliably detects JAK2LOH and is a fast and easy to perform alternative for STR analyses. We therefore anticipate the SNP approach as a proof of principle for the development of LOH SNP-assays for other clinically relevant LOH loci.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A single G-to-T missense mutation in the gene for the JAK2 tyrosine kinase, leading to a V617F amino acid substitution, is commonly found in several myeloproliferative neoplasms. Reliable quantification of this mutant allele is of increasing clinical and therapeutic interest in predicting and diagnosing this group of neoplasms. Because JAK2V617F is somatically acquired and may be followed by loss of heterozygosity, the percentage of mutant versus wild-type DNA in blood can vary between 0% and almost 100%. Therefore, we developed a real-time PCR assay for detection and quantification of the low-to-high range of the JAK2V617F allele burden. To allow the assay to meet these criteria, amplification of the wild-type JAK2 was blocked with a peptide nucleic acid oligonucleotide. JAK2V617F patient DNA diluted in JAK2 wild-type DNA could be amplified linearly from 0.05% to 100%, with acceptable reproducibility of quantification. The sensitivity of the assay was 0.05% (n = 3 of 3). In 9 of 100 healthy blood donors, a weak positive/background signal was observed in DNA isolated from blood, corresponding to approximately 0.01% JAK2V617F allele. In one healthy individual, we observed this signal in duplicate. The clinical relevance of this finding is not clear. By inhibiting amplification of the wild-type allele, we developed a sensitive and linear real-time PCR assay to detect and quantify JAK2V617F.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2011 · The Journal of molecular diagnostics: JMD
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Coxiella burnetii is the etiological agent of Q fever. Currently, the Netherlands is facing the largest Q fever epidemic ever, with almost
4,000 notified human cases. Although the presence of a hypervirulent strain is hypothesized, epidemiological evidence, such
as the animal reservoir(s) and genotype of the C. burnetii strain(s) involved, is still lacking. We developed a single-nucleotide-polymorphism (SNP) genotyping assay directly applicable
to clinical samples. Ten discriminatory SNPs were carefully selected and detected by real-time PCR. SNP genotyping appeared
to be highly suitable for discrimination of C. burnetii strains and easy to perform with clinical samples. With this new method, we show that the Dutch outbreak is caused by at
least 5 different C. burnetii genotypes. SNP typing of 14 human samples from the outbreak revealed the presence of 3 dissimilar genotypes. Two genotypes
were also present in livestock at 9 farms in the outbreak area. SNP analyses of bulk milk from 5 other farms, commercial cow
milk, and cow colostrum revealed 2 additional genotypes that were not detected in humans. SNP genotyping data from clinical
samples clearly demonstrate that at least 5 different C. burnetii genotypes are involved in the Dutch outbreak.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2011 · Applied and Environmental Microbiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An adult, wild-collected, male harp seal (Phoca groenlandica) was transferred from a rehabilitation center to a display facility because of unilateral phthisis bulbi and decreased use of the right forelimb, which precluded its release. In quarantine, the animal demonstrated limited use of the right forelimb, which acutely progressed to complete disuse of the limb accompanied by intermittent lethargy. One month after transfer, the animal was found dead on exhibit. Necropsy showed septic arthritis of the right scapulohumeral joint, valvular endocarditis with systemic bacterial thromboembolism, and infarction of the cerebrum and myocardium. Culture of the blood and affected joint space revealed Staphylococcus aureus. Bacterial polymerase chain reaction of formalin-fixed tissues from the heart and brain were also positive for S. aureus. Staphylococcus aureus infection should be considered as an additional cause of endocarditis and embolic encephalitis in seals.
No preview · Article · Jul 2009 · Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Legionella pneumophila DNA can be detected in serum from patients with Legionnaires' disease (LD). We explored this observation studying the kinetics of L. pneumophila DNA in serum samples in relation to C-reactive protein (CRP). Eleven hospitalized patients with LD were studied. Diagnosis was made by Legionella urinary antigen test in 8 patients and seroconversion in 3 patients. A macrophage infectivity potentiator (MIP) real-time PCR was performed on 31 serum samples, including 20 follow-up serum samples. Serum samples obtained on the day of admission were MIP PCR-positive in 7 (64%) and MIP PCR-negative in 4 (36%) patients. Three (75%) of the 4 patients with a MIP PCR-negative serum sample on the day of admission became positive during follow-up. Overall, L. pneumophila DNA was detected in serum samples from 10 of the 11 patients (91%). CRP levels in the 7 patients with a positive MIP PCR serum sample on day of admission (499 +/- 144 mg/l; median +/- SD) were significantly higher than those in the 4 patients with a negative MIP PCR serum sample on the day of admission (244 +/- 97 mg/l). No difference in the severity of the disease on the day of admission was found between these patients. The presence of L. pneumophila DNA in serum is a common phenomenon in hospitalized patients with LD, although in some cases it is not yet present on the day of admission. L. pneumophila DNA in serum on the day of admission correlates with high CRP levels, but not with the severity of the disease.
No preview · Article · Nov 2008 · European Journal of Clinical Microbiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Sample mix-ups are a threat to the validity of clinical laboratory test results. To detect serum sample mix-ups we developed a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) profiling test. SNPs are frequent sequence variations in the human genome. Each individual has a unique combination of these nucleotide variations.
Predeveloped SNP amplification assays are commercially available. We recently discovered that these SNP assays could be applied to serological samples, which is not self-evident because a key step in serum preparation is removal of white blood cells, the major source of DNA, from blood. DNA was extracted from serum samples. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis of the purified DNA using a selection of 10 SNP assays provided SNP profiles.
The applicability of the SNP profiling test was demonstrated by means of a case where hepatitis E virus serological determinations of four serum samples of one patient seemed inconsistent. SNP profiling of the samples demonstrated that this was due to the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test instead of sample mix-up.
We have developed an SNP profiling assay that provides a way to link human serum samples to a source, without post-PCR processing. The chance for two randomly chosen individuals to have an identical profile is 1 in 18 000. Solving potential serum sample mix-ups will secure downstream evaluations and critical decisions concerning the patients involved.