Masako Kato

Tottori University, TTJ, Tottori, Japan

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Publications (64)210.12 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Various autoantibodies have been reported to be detected during the progression of infectious mononucleosis. We observed a case of infectious mononucleosis due to Epstein-Barr virus primary infection for 2 months, and noticed the transiently increased titer of thyrotropin receptor autoantibodies detected at the acute phase on the 3rd day after admission. At that time, real-time quantitative PCR also revealed the mRNA expressions of an immediate early lytic gene, BZLF1, and a latent gene, EBNA2. The expression of BZLF1 mRNA means that Epstein-Barr virus infects lytically, and EBNA2 protein has an important role in antibody production as well as the establishment of Epstein-Barr virus latency. These results suggest that Epstein-Barr virus lytic infection is relevant to thyrotropin receptor autoantibody production. Thyrotropin receptor autoantibodies stimulate thyroid follicular cells to produce excessive thyroid hormones and cause Graves' disease. Recently, we reported the thyrotropin receptor autoantibody production from thyrotropin receptor autoantibody-predisposed Epstein-Barr virus-infected B cells by the induction of Epstein-Barr virus lytic infection in vitro. This case showed in vivo findings consistent with our previous reports, and is important to consider the pathophysiology of Graves' disease and one of the mechanisms of autoimmunity.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · SpringerPlus
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    ABSTRACT: Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a clinically aggressive neuroendocrine skin cancer; 80% of the cases are associated with the Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV). We previously reported that MCPyV-negative MCCs have more irregular nuclei with abundant cytoplasm and significantly unfavorable outcomes than do MCPyV-positive MCCs. These results suggest that some cell adhesion or structural stabilization molecules are differently expressed depending on MCPyV infection status. Thus, we investigated the association of prognosis or MCPyV infection status in MCCs with cell adhesion molecule 1 (CADM1)/differentially expressed in adenocarcinoma of the lung protein 1 (DAL-1)/membrane protein, palmitoylated 3 (MPP3) tripartite complex and mal T-cell differentiation protein (MAL) expression, which play important roles in cell adhesion and oncogenesis and are related to cancer outcomes in various malignancies, to elucidate the role of these molecules. We analyzed the pathological and molecular characteristics of 26 MCPyV-positive and 15 MCPyV-negative MCCs. Univariate Cox regression analysis showed that advanced age (hazard ratio [HR], 8.249; P = .007) and high CADM1 expression (HR, 5.214; P = .012) were significantly unfavorable overall survival parameters, whereas MCPyV infection (HR, 0.043, P < .001) and lower MAL expression (HR, 0.273; P = .018) were significantly favorable. On multivariate analysis, only MCPyV infection was significantly favorable for overall survival (HR, 0.04; P = .005). Hypermethylation of CADM1, DAL-1, and MAL promoters was detected in 1 of 18, 15 of 27, and 1 of 13 cases, respectively. Double immunostaining for cytokeratin 20 and CADM1, DAL-1, or MAL showed that nonneoplastic Merkel cells expressed DAL-1 and MAL but not CADM1. This study revealed that MCPyV-negative MCCs significantly expressed higher CADM1 and lower MAL than MCPyV-positive MCCs; these expression levels were markedly related to unfavorable outcomes. These data will give us important insights to develop novel molecular target therapies for MCCs.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2015 · Human pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is a proliferative disorder in which abnormal Langerhans cell (LC)-like cells (LCH cells) intermingle with inflammatory cells. Whether LCH is reactive or neoplastic remains a controversial matter. We recently described Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) as a possible causative agent of LCH and proposed interleukin-1 loop model: LCH is a reactive disorder with an underlying oncogenic potential and we now propose to test this theory by looking for acute markers of inflammation. We detected MCPyV-DNA in the peripheral blood cells of patients with high-risk organ-type (LCH-risk organ (RO) (+)) but not those with non-high-risk organ-type LCH (LCH-RO (-)); this difference was significant. LCH-RO (-) is further classified by its involvement of either a single organ system (SS-LCH) or multiple organ systems (MS-LCH). In patients with LCH-RO (-), MCPyV-DNA sequences were present in LCH tissues, and significant differences were observed between LCH tissues and control tissues associated with conditions such as dermatopathic lymphadenopathy and reactive lymphoid hyperplasia. Although MCPyV causes subclinical infection in nearly all people and 22 % of healthy adults will harbor MCPyV in their buffy coats, circulating monocytes could serve as MCPyV reservoirs and cause disseminated skin lesions. Plasma sample from 12 patients with LCH-RO (-) (5 MS-LCH and 7 SS-LCH) and 5 non-LCH patients were analyzed by peptidomics. Mass spectrometry (MS) spectra were acquired and peptides exhibiting quantitative differences between MS-LCH and SS-LCH patients were targeted. One new candidate biomarker, m/z 3145 was selected and identified after obtaining a MS/MS fragmentation pattern using liquid chromatography-MS/MS. This peak was identified as a proteolytic fragment derived from inter-alpha-trypsin inhibitor heavy chain 4 (ITIH4, [PDB: Q14624]). Peptidomics of LCH have revealed that the level of acute-phase ITIH4 distinguishes MS-LCH-RO (-) from SS-LCH-RO (-). Acute-phase proteins serve non-specific, physiological immune functions within the innate immune system. LCH may be a reactive disorder with both underlying neoplastic potential of antigen presenting cells harboring BRAF mutations and hyper-immunity of other inflammatory cells against MCPyV infection. Among LCH-RO (-), MCPyV-DNA sequences were present in both MS-LCH tissues and SS-LCH tissues without significant differences. ITIH4 may show that LCH activity or LCH subtypes correlates with the systemic or localized reactions of MCPyV infection.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015 · Clinical Proteomics
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    ABSTRACT: Merkel cell carcinomas (MCCs) associated with Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) have better prognosis than those without MCPyV. The relationship between mitotic index (MI) and MCC outcome has remained elusive because of the difficulty in differentiating mitotic cells from apoptotic ones. We evaluated the role of phosphohistone-H3 (PHH3) (Ser10), a new mitotic count biomarker, in MCPyV-positive or -negative MCC patients, and assessed its prognostic value in comparison to Ki-67 labeling index or MI using hematoxylin and eosin (HE) staining. We compared the prognostic value of PHH3 mitotic index with that of MI by HE in 19 MCPyV-positive and 9 MCPyV-negative MCC patients. PHH3-positive immunoreactivity was mostly observed in mitotic figures. Multivariate analysis significantly showed that MCPyV status (HR, 0.004; 95% CI 0.0003-0.058) and the American Joint Committee of Cancer (AJCC) stage (HR, 5.02; 95% CI 1.23-20.51) were observed as significantly independent prognostic factors for OS. PHH3-positive cell counts/10 HPF was a slightly significant independent prognostic factor for OS (HR, 4.96; 95% CI 0.93-26.55). PHH3-positive MI and MCPyV status in MCC patients are useful in prognostication, although MCPyV-infection is a more powerful prognostic factor in MCCs than the AJCC scheme on proliferation or mitotic indices. © 2015 Japanese Society of Pathology and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.
    No preview · Article · May 2015 · Pathology International
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    ABSTRACT: Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a ubiquitous virus that infects most adults latently. It persists in B lymphocytes and reactivates occasionally. Graves' disease is an autoimmune hyperthyroidism caused by thyrotropin receptor antibodies (TRAbs). We have reported that Graves' disease patients and healthy controls have EBV-infected lymphocytes that have TRAbs on their surface (TRAb(+)EBV(+) cells) in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). EBV reactivation is known to be associated with plasma cell differentiation and antibody production of B cells. In this study, we investigated whether TRAb(+)EBV(+) cells really produce TRAbs or not when persistent EBV is reactivated. We cultured PBMCs from 12 Graves' disease patients and 12 healthy controls for several days with cyclosporine A to expand the EBV-infected cell population, and then compared TRAb levels between EBV reactivation by 33 °C culture and EBV nonreactivation by 37 °C culture of PBMCs. Flow cytometry confirmed that all samples at day 0 (reactivation starting point) contained TRAb(+)EBV(+) cells. During 33 °C culture, EBV-reactivated cells with EBV-gp350/220 expression increased from about 1 to 4%. We quantified TRAb levels in culture fluids by radio-receptor assay, and detected an increased concentration for at least one sampling point at 33 °C (from days 0 to 12) for all patients and healthy controls. TRAb levels were significantly higher in supernatants of 33 °C culture than of 37 °C culture, and also significantly higher in supernatants from patients than those from controls. This study revealed TRAb production from TRAb(+)EBV(+) cells in response to reactivation induction of persistent EBV in different efficiencies between patients and controls.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2015 · Autoimmunity
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    ABSTRACT: We propose Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is an inflammatory process that is prolonged by mutations. We hypothesize that Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) infection triggers an interleukin-1 (IL-1) activation loop that underlies the pathogenesis of LCH. Langerhans cells (LCs) are antigen presenting cells in the skin. When LCs encounter exogenous antigens, they migrate from the epidermis into draining lymphoid tissues to initiate T-cell activity. It has been proposed that LC migration-related factors, including E-cadherin, matrix metalloproteinase, and Notch ligand induce LCH activity. We found that the tyrosine phosphatase SHP-1, which binds IL-1 receptor-associated kinase 1, is expressed at a significantly higher level in LCH affecting multiple organ systems (MS-LCH) than in LCH affecting a single organ system (SS-LCH). IL-1 stimulates T helper 17 cells and their signature cytokine IL-17 had been a matter of controversy. We detected higher levels of IL-17A receptor expression in MS-LCH than in SS-LCH and proposed an IL-17 endocrine model that could settle the controversy. IL-1 is the first cytokine secreted in response to sensitizers and promotes LC migration from sentinel tissues. Myeloid differentiation primary response 88 (MyD88), downstream of the IL-1 receptor, has functions in both RAS signaling and inflammation, leading to human cell transformation. In 2010, an activating mutation in the B-rapidly accelerated fibrosarcoma gene (BRAF) V600E was found in LCH. This BRAF mutation induces phosphorylation of the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) that may play an important role with MyD88 in LCH pathogenesis. However, phosphorylated ERK (pERK) is rapidly dephosphorylated by dual specificity phosphatase 6 (DUSP6), and limited proliferation is predicted in BRAF mutant cells. MyD88 binds pERK via its D-domain, thereby preventing pERK–DUSP6 interaction and maintaining ERK in an active, phosphorylated state. We detected MCPyV-DNA in the peripheral blood cells of two out of three patients with LCH in high-risk organs but not in those of patients with LCH in non–high-risk organs (0/12; P = .029). MCPyV infection can trigger precursor LCH cells with BRAF mutation to produce IL-1; the IL-1 loop is amplified in all LCH subclasses. Our model indicates both BRAF mutation and IL-1 loop regulation as potential therapeutic targets.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Cell Communication and Signaling
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    ABSTRACT: Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is an aggressive neuroendocrine skin cancer, often associated with Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV). Recently, immunoglobulin (Ig) expression was reported in MCC, thereby suggesting that B cells might be their cellular ancestors. We tested 30 MCCs (20 MCPyV-positive and 10 MCPyV-negative) using immunohistochemistry for the expressions of IgG, IgA, IgM, Igκ, Igλ, terminal desoxynucleotidyl transferase, paired box gene 5 (PAX5), octamer transcription factor-2 (Oct-2), and sex-determining region Y-box 11 (SOX11). We performed in situ hybridization for Igκ-mRNA or Igλ-mRNA and Ig heavy chain (IgH) gene rearrangement (IgH-R) analyses. The expressions of PAX5, TdT, Oct-2, and SOX11 were not significantly different between MCPyV-positive and MCPyV-negative MCCs. At least 1 of IgG, IgA, IgM, or Igκ was expressed in MCPyV-positive (14/20, 70%) and none in MCPyV-negative MCCs (P=0.0003). There was a higher tendency for Igκ-mRNA expression (7/19, using in situ hybridization) and IgH-R (10/20, using polymerase chain reaction) in MCPyV-positive than in MCPyV-negative MCCs (0/10 and 2/10, respectively), thus suggesting a different Ig production pattern and pathogenesis between the 2 types of MCC. Ig expression or IgH-R in MCPyV-positive MCCs might be associated with MCPyV gene integration or expression in cancer cells but do not necessarily suggest a B-cell origin for MCCs. IgH expression or IgH-R nonsignificantly correlated with improved prognosis. However, these might be important factors that influence the survival of neoplastic cells and might allow the development of novel therapies for patients with MCPyV-positive MCCs.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2014 · American Journal of Surgical Pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) integrates monoclonally into the genomes of approximately 80% of Merkel cell carcinomas (MCCs), affecting their clinicopathologic features. The molecular mechanisms underlying MCC development after MCPyV infection remain unclear. We investigated the association of MCPyV infection with activation of the Akt/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)/4E-binding protein 1 (4E-BP1) signaling pathway in MCCs to elucidate the role of these signal transductions and to identify molecular targets for treatment. We analyzed the molecular and pathological characteristics of 41 MCPyV-positive and 27 MCPyV-negative MCCs. Expression of mTOR, TSC1, and TSC2 mRNA was significantly higher in MCPyV-negative MCCs, and Akt (T308) phosphorylation also was significantly higher (92% versus 66%; P = .019), whereas 4E-BP1 (S65 and T70) phosphorylation was common in both MCC types (92%–100%). The expression rates of most other tested signals were high (60%–100%) and not significantly correlated with MCPyV large T antigen (LT) expression. PIK3CA mutations were observed more frequently in MCPyV-positive MCCs (6/36 [17%] versus 2/20 [10%]). These results suggest that protein expression (activation) of most Akt/mTOR/4E-BP1 pathway signals was not significantly different in MCPyV-positive and -negative MCCs, although these two types may differ in tumorigenesis; and MCPyV-negative MCCs showed significantly more frequent p-Akt (T308) activation. Therefore, certain Akt/mTOR/4E-BP1 pathway signals could be novel therapeutic targets for MCC regardless of MCPyV infection status.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Human pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Langerhans cell (LC) sarcoma (LCS) is a high-grade neoplasm with overtly malignant cytologic features and an LC phenotype. We very recently suggested that LC behaves as a reservoir for common dermotropic Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) and determined the relationship between LC histiocytosis (LCH), which has an underlining oncogenic capacity, and MCPyV as a trigger for a reactive process rather than a neoplastic process. We propose LC to be a reservoir for MCPyV and hypothesize that some LCS subtypes may be related to the MCPyV agent. We examined seven LCS tissues using multiplex quantitative PCR (Q-PCR) and immunohistochemistry with anti MCPyV large-T (LT) antigen antibody. High viral loads of MCPyV DNA sequences (viral load = relative levels of MCPyV) were detected (0.328-0.772 copies/cell (Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) = 1.0)) using Q-PCR in 43% (3/7) tissues, but LT antigen expression was not observed (0/7). Frequent MCPyV-DNA amplification suggests that LCS in some patients may be related to MCPyV infection. Moreover, the higher viral load of LCS (median, 0.453 copies/cell) than low load of LCH (0.003, median of 12 cases) (P < 0.01) may suggest a virally induced tumorigenic process in some LCS. Although the absence of LT antigen expression may indicate a different role for MCPyV in this pathology, some subtypes of LCS may develop in the background of MCPyV-infected LC. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the relationship between MCPyV and LCS. The recent discovery of MCPyV opened new therapeutic avenues for MCC. These data open novel possibilities for therapeutic interventions against LCS.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · Infectious Agents and Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Approximately 80% of Merkel cell carcinomas (MCCs) harbor Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) which monoclonally integrates into the genome and has prognostic significance. The presence or absence of MCPyV is usually diagnosed using CM2B4 immunohistochemistry (IHC) for MCPyV-large T antigen (LT) protein. However, this method poses a risk of misdiagnosis. In this study, we determined MCPyV infection in MCCs using real-time PCR for MCPyV-LT DNA and prepared 16 cases of MCPyV-DNA-positive and -negative groups. Diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of conventional PCR for MCPyV-small T antigen (MCPyV-ST), IHC using a newly developed polyclonal antibody (ST-1) for MCPyV-ST protein (MCPyV-ST) (aa: 164-177), and in situ hybridization (ISH) as well as real-time PCR for MCPyV-ST mRNA were compared against CM2B4-IHC for sensitivity (0.94, 15/16) and specificity (0.94, 15/16). The followings are the respective sensitivity and specificity results from examinations for MCPyV-ST gene: conventional PCR for the MCPyV-ST (0.94, 1.0), ST-1-IHC (0.69, 1.0), real-time PCR for ST mRNA (1.0, no data), ST mRNA ISH (0.94, 1.0). Each of the MCPyV-pseudonegative (1/16) and -pseudopositive (1/16) diagnoses evaluated using CM2B4-IHC were accurately corrected by examinations for MCPyV-ST or its expression as well as real-time PCR for MCPyV-LT. Sensitivity of CM2B4-IHC (0.94) was superior to that of ST-1-IHC (0.69) but equal to that of ST mRNA-ISH (0.94). Specificities of ST-1-IHC (1.0) and ST mRNA-ISH (1.0) were superior to that of CM2B4-IHC (0.94). Therefore, combined application of ST mRNA-ISH and ST-IHC as well as CM2B4-IHC is recommended and will contribute to the diagnostic accuracy for MCPyV infection in MCCs.Virtual slides: The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/9966295741144834.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Diagnostic Pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Background: To clarify the pathogenesis of cerebellar Purkinje cell death in patients with Menkes kinky hair disease (MD), a disorder of copper absorption, we investigated the morphological and functional abnormalities of residual Purkinje cells in MD patients and the mechanism of cell death. Methods: Seven MD patients and 39 neurologically normal autopsy cases were studied. We performed histopathological and quantitative analyses of the Purkinje cells. In addition, we used immunohistochemistry to detect copper-dependent enzymes [cytosolic Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD1) and copper chaperone for superoxide dismutase (CCS)], oxidative stress markers [4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (HNE) and acrolein] and heat shock protein 32 (hsp 32). Results: The surviving MD Purkinje cells showed abnormal development, such as somatic sprouts and heterotopic location. Due to maldevelopment and degeneration, dendrites showed the cactus and weeping willow patterns. Axonal degeneration led to the formation of torpedoes. Quantitative analysis revealed loss of approximately 50% of the Purkinje cells in MD patients. Almost all of the normal Purkinje cells were positive for immunostaining by anti-CCS and anti-SOD1 antibodies, with staining of the cell bodies, dendrites and axons. Normal Purkinje cells were not stained by antibodies for HNE, acrolein or hsp 32. In MD patients, the majority of Purkinje cells were positive for CCS, but the positive rate for SOD1 was only about 23%. Approximately 56%, 42% and 40% of the Purkinje cells of MD patients were positive for HNE, acrolein and hsp 32, respectively. Conclusion: In MD patients, about 50% of the Purkinje cells have been lost due to maldevelopment and degeneration. In the residual Purkinje cells, CCS expression seems to be nearly normal as a protective response to decreased SOD1 activity due to copper deficiency. Because oxidative stress is elevated secondary to decreased SOD1 activity, hsp 32 is induced as another protective mechanism.
    Preview · Article · Mar 2014 · Yonago acta medica
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Wallenberg syndrome was first reported by Adolf Wallenberg as arising due to the obstruction of the posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA), which caused an infarct in the lateral medulla oblongata (MO). Method: This study was carried out on brain tissue from 2 patients with typical Wallenberg syndrome and 10 autopsy cases without central nervous system disturbances. Results: Patient 1 exhibited the 3 major neurological symptoms of right crossed sensory disturbance, right cerebellar ataxia and bulbar palsy. There was the pathological obstruction of the right vertebral artery (VA). Regarding the histopathlogical distribution, the infarct extended on the right side to the lateral spinothalamic tract, nucleus of the spinal tract of the trigeminal nerve, spinal tract of the trigeminal nerve, inferior cerebellar peduncle, spinocerebellar tract and nucleus ambiguous. Moreover, a clear infarct in the left lateral MO was pathologically identified, but pathological obstruction of the left PICA or left VA could not be found. The left cerebellar ataxia and bulbar palsy were observed among these 3 major symptoms. Patient 2 showed the 3 major symptoms of right crossed sensory disturbance, right cerebellar ataxia and bulbar palsy. A pathological luminal occlusion was identified in the right PICA. Regarding the histopathological lesion, the infarct disturbed on the right side the lateral spinothalamic tract, nucleus of the spinal tract of the trigeminal nerve, spinal tract of the trigeminal nerve, spinocerebellar tract, inferior cerebellar peduncle and nucleus ambiguus. Conclusion: Based on our investigation of pathological lesions using our 2 autopsies, we suggest calling the cases that satisfy the following 3 criteria "definite pathologic Wallenberg syndrome": i) identifiable pathological obstruction of the PICA or VA; ii) infarction in the lateral MO based on PICA or VA obstruction; and iii) a 1-to-1 correspondence between clinical symptoms and neuropathological lesions.
    Preview · Article · Mar 2014 · Yonago acta medica
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    ABSTRACT: Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is a group of granulomatous disorders in which abnormal Langerhans cells proliferate as either a localized lesion in a single bone or disseminated disease involving two or more organs or systems. Because the different LCH forms exhibit significantly elevated levels of inflammatory molecules, including pro-inflammatory cytokines and tissue-degrading enzymes, we investigated for a possible viral trigger in LCH pathogenesis. We looked for Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) in peripheral blood cells and tissues using quantitative real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry staining with anti-MCPyV large T-antigen antibody. Our findings revealed elevated amounts of MCPyV DNA in the peripheral blood cells of 2 of 3 patients affected by LCH with high-risk organ involvement (RO+) and absence of MCPyV DNA in the blood cells in all 12 LCH-RO- patients (P = .029). With lower viral loads (0.002-0.033 copies/cell), an elevated number of MCPyV DNA sequences was detected in 12 LCH tissues in comparison with control tissues obtained from patients with reactive lymphoid hyperplasia (0/5; P = .0007), skin diseases not related to LCH in children younger than 2 years (0/11; P = .0007), or dermatopathic lymphadenopathy (5/20; P = .0002). The data, including frequent but lower viral loads and low large-T antigen expression rate (2/13 LCH tissues), suggest that development of LCH as a reactive rather than a neoplastic process may be related to MCPyV infection.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Human pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract Graves' disease is an autoimmune hyperthyroidism caused by thyrotropin receptor antibodies (TRAbs). Because Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) persists in B cells and is occasionally reactivated, we hypothesized that EBV contributes to TRAbs production in Graves' disease patients by stimulating the TRAbs-producing B cells. In order for EBV to stimulate antibody-producing cells, EBV must be present in those cells but that have not yet been observed. We examined whether EBV-infected (EBV(+)) B cells with TRAbs on their surface (TRAbs(+)) as membrane immunoglobulin were present in peripheral blood of Graves' disease patients. We analyzed cultured or non-cultured peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from 13 patients and 11 healthy controls by flow-cytometry and confocal laser microscopy, and confirmed all cultured PBMCs from 8 patients really had TRAbs(+) EBV(+) double positive cells. We unexpectedly detected TRAbs(+) cells in all healthy controls, and TRAbs(+) EBV(+) double positive cells in all cultured PBMC from eight healthy controls. The frequency of TRAbs(+) cells in cultured PBMCs was significantly higher in patients than in controls (p = 0.021). In this study, we indicated the presence of EBV-infected B lymphocytes with TRAbs on their surface, a possible player of the production of excessive TRAbs, the causative autoantibody for Graves' disease. This is a basic evidence for our hypothesis that EBV contributes to TRAbs production in Graves' disease patients. Our results further suggest that healthy controls have the potential for TRAbs production. This gives us an important insight into the pathogenesis of Graves' disease.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Autoimmunity
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    ABSTRACT: Most of merkel cell carcinomas (MCC), a rare, aggressive skin cancer with neuroendocrine features, harbor merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV). Seroepidemiological studies suggested high prevalence of MCPyV in the human population. More than ten sequence data on MCPyV strains in Japan have been available, whereas most sequence data were detected from patients living in Europe or European ancestry. Analysis of nine almost complete and 19 partial sequences from two oncogenes, small T antigen (ST) and large T antigen (LT) genomes obtained from 32 Japanese MCPyV-infected MCC revealed that each Japanese MCPyV-infected MCC harbored a specific MCPyV strain with some synonymous or, silent mutations and stop codons or deletions, but functional domains of T antigen had no amino acid changes. All stop codons were localized after retinoblastoma protein-binding domain. These Japanese MCPyV strains were very closely interrelated to themselves and a consensus sequence of Japanese strain was generated. Phylogenetic analysis of our nine sequences and 70 other sequences for ST and LT gene registered in GenBank indicated that Japanese or Asian MCPyV strains formed distinct clades from Caucasian clade, and phylogenetic tree of our nine and 75 other sequences for ST gene formed characteristic three clades and showed that all Japanese or Asian strains were included in the dominant clade. These suggested the possibility of geographically related genotypes of MCPyV. The genomic characterization of MCPyV variants will provide an important database and insights for illuminating their evolutional and biological differences.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2013 · Virus Genes
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    ABSTRACT: Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) monoclonally integrates into genomes of approximately 80% of Merkel cell carcinomas (MCCs) and undergoes mutation. We previously demonstrated statistically significant differences in tumor cell morphology and biology between MCPyV-positive and MCPyV-negative MCCs. We reassessed the usefulness of our morphologic criteria in differentiating MCPyV-negative and MCPyV-positive MCCs for practical diagnosis. Two trainees and 4 pathologists challenged estimations (5-point confidence scale) of MCPyV infection in MCCs using hematoxylin and eosin-stained slides of 43 new MCC cases and 2 morphologic criteria: (1) nuclear polymorphism is higher and cytoplasm is more abundant in MCPyV-negative MCC cells, and (2) MCC combined with squamous cell carcinoma is defined as MCPyV negative, regardless of tumor cell morphology of MCC. Subsequently, immunohistochemistry for MCPyV large T antigen and polymerase chain reaction for MCPyV DNA yielded concordant results (MCPyV positivity was 30/43 and 32/43, respectively) for 41 (96%) of 43 cases. The mean accuracy, sensitivity, and specificity of the trainees and pathologists were 92.4% ± 1.5% and 81.5% ± 11.0%, 95.6% ± 6.2% and 90.2% ± 8.3%, and 83.3% ± 11.8% and 74.6% ± 14.1%, respectively. Values of the areas under the curve were 0.80 to 0.95, indicating good informative scores. Using our morphologic criteria, observers can predict the absence of MCPyV infection and diagnose MCPyV-negative MCCs with poor prognosis. Unexpectedly, the performance of trainees was superior to that of pathologists, implying that our morphologic criteria are useful even for practitioners having little experience. Our morphologic criteria will provide pathologists with convenient and reliable hallmarks for accurate MCC diagnosis.
    No preview · Article · May 2013 · Human pathology
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    ABSTRACT: Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the oral region often metastasizes to the cervical lymph nodes. To investigate whether the risk of cervical lymph node metastasis are predictable through lymphatic vessel density (LVD) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression, we assessed the relationship between LVD and clinicopathological parameters, and VEGF expression in SCC of the oral region. The subjects were 109 patients with SCC of the oral region including the lip. Clinicopathological parameters examined for the association with LVD in a peritumoral hot spot were lymph node metastasis, histological grade and disease stage. The association with VEGF expression was similarly studied. LVD was detected by immunohistochemistry using D2-40. LVD was significantly higher in lip cancer than in other oral tumors (P < 0.0001), while there were no significant differences of LVD among other cancers of the oral cavity. LVD tended to decrease with disease progression, increase of tumor size and increase of metastatic lymph node size. Eighty-four of 109 tumors were positive for VEGF-C or D. VEGF-C-positive tumor lesions were also positive for VEGF-D. Significantly higher levels of VEGF-C and D expressions were associated with large size of lymph node metastases (P = 0.02). SCC of the oral region including the lip that produces VEGF-C and D is significantly more likely to cause cervical lymph node metastasis. LVD in a peritumoral hot spot does not directly indicate the risk of cervical lymph node metastasis, but instead may reflect lymphangiogenesis due to VEGF together with loss of lymphatic vessels through tumor growth and progression.
    Preview · Article · Mar 2013 · Yonago acta medica
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: To clarify characteristics on rabbit in vivo infection with type 2 EBV nuclear antigen (EBNA-2)-deleted Epstein-Barr virus (P3HR-1-EBV) and compare infectious efficacy of P3HR-1-EBV with previously reported prototype type 1 EBV from B95-8. Methods: Twelve Japanese White rabbits were inoculated with P3HR-1-EBV via intranasal or intravenous routes and autopsied on day 70-84. Results: In only 2 of 12 P3HR-1-EBV-inoculated rabbits, EBV-DNA was detected in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). BamHI M rightward reading frame (BMRF)-1, EBNA-1 and BamHI Z leftward reading frame (BZLF)-1-mRNA were intermittently expressed in PBMCs. In 1 infected rabbit with continuous detection of EBV-DNA in PBMCs, many EBER-1-positive lymphocytes were observed in germinal centers and/or marginal zones in some follicles of the appendix, and for the first time a lymphocyte with EBER-1 expression infiltrating in the squamous cell layer of the tonsils was found. The other rabbit with a transient detection of EBV-DNA in PBMCs had no EBER-1-positive lymphocytes in the tissues examined. Few EBER-1-positive lymphocytes were detected in some rabbits without detection of EBV-DNA in PBMCs. Conclusions: P3HR-1-EBV showed less efficient infection in rabbits than EBV from the B95-8 cell line. However, a P3HR-1-EBV-inoculated animal model is meaningful because this is the first study of EBNA-2 function on in vivo EBV infection and it demonstrated the in vivo infectivity with lytic-type infection by EBNA-2-deleted EBV.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · Intervirology
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    ABSTRACT: Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is a lymphoproliferative disorder consisting of abnormal Langerhans cell-like cells and other lymphoid cells. LCH presents as either a multisystem LCH (LCH-MS) or a single-system LCH (LCH-SS). Currently, neither the pathogeneses nor the factors that define these disease subclasses have been elucidated. The interleukin (IL)-17A autocrine LCH model and IL-17A-targeted therapies have been proposed and have engendered much controversy. Those authors showed high serum IL-17A levels in LCH and argued that serum IL-17A-dependent fusion activities in vitro, rather than serum IL-17A levels, correlated with LCH severity (i.e. the IL-17A paradox). In contrast, others could not confirm the IL-17A autocrine model. So began the controversy on IL-17A, which still continues. We approached the IL-17A controversy and the IL-17A paradox from a new perspective in considering the expression levels of IL-17A receptor (IL-17RA). We detected higher levels of IL-17RA protein expression in LCH-MS (n = 10) as compared to LCH-SS (n = 9) (P = 0.041) by immunofluorescence. We reconfirmed these data by re-analyzing GSE16395 mRNA data. We found that serum levels of IL-17A were higher in LCH (n = 38) as compared to controls (n = 20) (P = 0.005) with no significant difference between LCH subclasses. We propose an IL-17A endocrine model and stress that changes in IL-17RA expression levels are important for defining LCH subclasses. We hypothesize that these IL-17RA data could clarify the IL-17A controversy and the IL-17A paradox. As a potential treatment of LCH-MS, we indicate the possibility of an IL-17RA-targeted therapy.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2012 · Archiv für Pathologische Anatomie und Physiologie und für Klinische Medicin
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    ABSTRACT: It has recently been shown that approximately 80% of Merkel cell carcinomas harbor a novel polyomavirus named Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV). MCPyV has been detected in human tissue samples. However, detailed distribution of MCPyV in non-neoplastic Japanese human tissues remains unclear. To address this, we used single or real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for 41 autopsy cases. PCR revealed MCPyV-DNA in non-neoplastic samples: total, 29/41 (71%); adult, 29/39 (74%); fetus or infant, 0/2; men, 24/28 (86%); women, 5/13 (38%); total human tissues, 66/572 (12%); skin, 8/15 (53%); adrenal gland, 9/33 (27%), and other 16 organs (4-25%). This study first reported the presence of MCPyV-DNA in non-neoplastic tissues of thyroid gland, adrenal gland, spleen, bone marrow, stomach, gallbladder, pancreas, heart, and aorta. PCR revealed that viral load ranged from 0.00026 to 0.22 in all MCPyV-positive tissues compared with Merkel cell carcinoma samples. These detailed PCR data showed higher prevalence of MCPyV infection in Japanese men than women (p = 0.004) and broad distribution of MCPyV with low viral load in more non-neoplastic human tissues than in the previous reports. These data provide valuable insights for further studies of MCPyV infection and MCPyV-related diseases.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · Intervirology