104 research outputs found

    Depletion of Cytotoxic T-Cells Does Not Protect NUP98-HOXD13 Mice from Myelodysplastic Syndrome but Reveals a Modest Tumor Immunosurveillance Effect

    Get PDF
    Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and aplastic anemia (AA) patients both present with symptoms of bone marrow failure. In many AA patients, these features are thought to result from an oligoclonal expansion of cytotoxic T-cells that destroy haematopoietic stem or progenitor cells. This notion is supported by the observation that AA patients respond to immunosuppressive therapy. A fraction of MDS patients also respond well to immunosuppressive therapy suggesting a similar role for cytotoxic T-cells in the etiology of MDS, however the role of cytotoxic T-cells in MDS remains unclear. Mice that express a NUP98-HOXD13 (NHD13) transgene develop a MDS that closely mimics the human condition in terms of dysplasia, ineffective hematopoiesis, and transformation to acute myeloid leukemia (AML). We followed a cohort of NHD13 mice lacking the Rag1 protein (NHD13/Rag1KO) to determine if the absence of lymphocytes might 1) delay the onset and/or diminish the severity of the MDS, or 2) effect malignant transformation and survival of the NHD13 mice. No difference was seen in the onset or severity of MDS between the NHD13 and NHD13/Rag1KO mice. However, NHD13/Rag1KO mice had decreased survival and showed a trend toward increased incidence of transformation to AML compared to the NHD13 mice, suggesting protection from AML transformation by a modest immuno-surveillance effect. In the absence of functional Tcrb signaling in the NHD13/Rag1KO T-cell tumors, Pak7 was identified as a potential Tcrb surrogate survival signal

    HoxA9 binds and represses the Cebpa +8 kb enhancer

    Get PDF
    C/EBPα plays a key role in specifying myeloid lineage development. HoxA9 is expressed in myeloid progenitors, with its level diminishing during myeloid maturation, and HOXA9 is over-expressed in a majority of acute myeloid leukemia cases, including those expressing NUP98-HOXD13. The objective of this study was to determine whether HoxA9 directly represses Cebpa gene expression. We find 4-fold increased HoxA9 and 5-fold reduced Cebpa in marrow common myeloid and LSK progenitors from Vav-NUP98-HOXD13 transgenic mice. Conversely, HoxA9 decreases 5-fold while Cebpa increases during granulocytic differentiation of 32Dcl3 myeloid cells. Activation of exogenous HoxA9-ER in 32Dcl3 cells reduces Cebpa mRNA even in the presence of cycloheximide, suggesting direct repression. Cebpa transcription in murine myeloid cells is regulated by a hematopoietic-specific +37 kb enhancer and by a more widely active +8 kb enhancer. ChIP-Seq analysis of primary myeloid progenitor cells expressing exogenous HoxA9 or HoxA9-ER demonstrates that HoxA9 localizes to both the +8 kb and +37 kb Cebpa enhancers. Gel shift analysis demonstrates HoxA9 binding to three consensus sites in the +8 kb enhancer, but no affinity for the single near-consensus site present in the +37 kb enhancer. Activity of a Cebpa +8 kb enhancer/promoter-luciferase reporter in 32Dcl3 or MOLM14 myeloid cells is increased ~2-fold by mutation of its three HOXA9-binding sites, suggesting that endogenous HoxA9 represses +8 kb Cebpa enhancer activity. In contrast, mutation of five C/EBPα-binding sites in the +8 kb enhancer reduces activity 3-fold. Finally, expression of a +37 kb enhancer/promoter-hCD4 transgene reporter is reduced ~2-fold in marrow common myeloid progenitors when the Vav-NUP98-HOXD13 transgene is introduced. Overall, these data support the conclusion that HoxA9 represses Cebpa expression, at least in part via inhibition of its +8 kb enhancer, potentially allowing normal myeloid progenitors to maintain immaturity and contributing to the pathogenesis of acute myeloid leukemia associated with increased HOXA9

    Unsuspected role of the brain morphogenetic gene Otx1 in hematopoiesis

    Get PDF
    Otx1 belongs to the paired class of homeobox genes and plays a pivotal role in brain development. Here, we show that Otx1 is expressed in hematopoietic pluripotent and erythroid progenitor cells. Moreover, bone marrow cells from mice lacking Otx1 exhibit a cell-autonomous impairment of the erythroid compartment. In agreement with these results, molecular analysis revealed decreased levels of erythroid genes that include the SCL and GATA-1 transcription factors. Accordingly, a gain of function of SCL rescues the erythroid deficiency in Otx1-/- mice. Taken together, our findings indicate a function for Otx1 in the regulation of blood cell production. There is growing evidence suggesting that common cellular and molecular mechanisms orchestrate differentiation in various tissues. Homeobox-containing genes seem to be strong candidate genes to regulate a number of developmental processes, including neurogenesis and hematopoiesis. Members of the Otx family (Otx1, Otx2, Otx3, and Crx) are the vertebrate homologues of the Drosophila head gap gene orthodenticle and encode transcription factors containing a bicoid-like homeodomain. They are temporally and spatially regulated during development and seem to be required for proper head and sense organ patterning. Otx1, Otx2, and Otx3 show partially overlapping, but distinct expression patterns, and Otx2, the first to be activated during development, plays a major role in gastrulation and in the early specification of the anterior neural plate. In contrast, Otx1 shows a later onset and is involved in corticogenesis, sense organ development, and pituitary function. Mice bearing targeted deletion of Otx1 are affected by a permanent epileptic phenotype and show multiple brain abnormalities and morphological defects of the acoustic and visual sense organs. In addition, at the prepubescent stage, they exhibit transient dwarfism and hypogonadism because of low levels of pituitary hormones. In the present study, we have investigated whether Otx1 also plays a role in blood cell production, as several homeobox genes of different families are involved in normal and/or malignant hematopoiesis

    BCL2A1a Over-Expression in Murine Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells Decreases Apoptosis and Results in Hematopoietic Transformation

    Get PDF
    We previously reported the development of a lethal myeloid sarcoma in a non-human primate model utilizing retroviral vectors to genetically modify hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. This leukemia was characterized by insertion of the vector provirus into the BCL2A1 gene, with resultant BCL2A1 over-expression. There is little information on the role of this anti-apoptotic member of the BCL2 family in hematopoiesis or leukemia induction. Therefore we studied the impact of Bcl2a1a lentiviral over-expression on murine hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. We demonstrated the anti-apoptotic function of this protein in hematopoietic cells, but did not detect any impact of Bcl2a1a on in vitro cell growth or cell cycle kinetics. In vivo, we showed a higher propensity of HSCs over-expressing Bcl2a1a to engraft and contribute to hematopoiesis. Mice over-expressing Bcl2a1a in the hematologic compartment eventually developed an aggressive malignant disease characterized as a leukemia/lymphoma of B-cell origin. Secondary transplants carried out to investigate the primitive origin of the disease revealed the leukemia was transplantable. Thus, Bcl2a1 should be considered as a protooncogene with a potential role in both lymphoid and myeloid leukemogenesis, and a concerning site for insertional activation by integrating retroviral vectors utilized in hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy.intramural research programs of the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (CED) of the National Institutes of Healthintramural research programs of the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (CED) of the National Institutes of Healt

    Mcm2 hypomorph leads to acute leukemia or hematopoietic stem cell failure, dependent on genetic context

    Get PDF
    Minichromosome maintenance proteins (Mcm2-7) form a hexameric complex that unwinds DNA ahead of a replicative fork. The deficiency of Mcm proteins leads to replicative stress and consequent genomic instability. Mice with a germline insertion of a Cre cassette into the 3'UTR of the Mcm2 gene (designated Mcm2Cre ) have decreased Mcm2 expression and invariably develop precursor T-cell lymphoblastic leukemia/lymphoma (pre-T LBL), due to 100-1000 kb deletions involving important tumor suppressor genes. To determine whether mice that were protected from pre-T LBL would develop non-T-cell malignancies, we used two approaches. Mice engrafted with Mcm2Cre/Cre Lin- Sca-1+ Kit+ hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells did not develop hematologic malignancy; however, these mice died of hematopoietic stem cell failure by 6 months of age. Placing the Mcm2Cre allele onto an athymic nu/nu background completely prevented pre-T LBL and extended survival of these mice three-fold (median 296.5 vs. 80.5 days). Ultimately, most Mcm2Cre/Cre ;nu/nu mice developed B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (BCP-ALL). We identified recurrent deletions of 100-1000 kb that involved genes known or suspected to be involved in BCP-ALL, including Pax5, Nf1, Ikzf3, and Bcor. Moreover, whole-exome sequencing identified recurrent mutations of genes known to be involved in BCP-ALL progression, such as Jak1/Jak3, Ptpn11, and Kras. These findings demonstrate that an Mcm2Cre/Cre hypomorph can induce hematopoietic dysfunction via hematopoietic stem cell failure as well as a "deletor" phenotype affecting known or suspected tumor suppressor genes

    NUP98-PHF23 Is a Chromatin-Modifying Oncoprotein That Causes a Wide Array of Leukemias Sensitive to Inhibition of PHD Histone Reader Function

    Get PDF
    In this report, we show that expression of a NUP98-PHF23 (NP23) fusion, associated with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in humans, leads to myeloid, erythroid, T-cell, and B-cell leukemia in mice. The leukemic and pre-leukemic tissues display a stem cell-like expression signature including Hoxa, Hoxb, and Meis1 genes. The PHF23 PHD domain is known to bind H3K4me3 residues, and chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrated that the NP23 protein bound chromatin at a specific subset of H3K4me3 sites, including Hoxa, Hoxb, and Meis1. Treatment of NP23 cells with disulfiram, which inhibits the binding of PHD domains to H3K4me3 residues, rapidly and selectively killed NP23 myeloblasts; cell death was preceded by decreased expression of Hoxa, Hoxb, and Meis1. Furthermore, AML driven by a related fusion gene, NUP98-JARID1A (NJL), was also sensitive to disulfiram. Thus, the NP23 mouse provides a platform to evaluate compounds that disrupt binding of oncogenic PHD proteins to H3K4me3

    Intrinsic Structural Disorder Confers Cellular Viability on Oncogenic Fusion Proteins

    Get PDF
    Chromosomal translocations, which often generate chimeric proteins by fusing segments of two distinct genes, represent the single major genetic aberration leading to cancer. We suggest that the unifying theme of these events is a high level of intrinsic structural disorder, enabling fusion proteins to evade cellular surveillance mechanisms that eliminate misfolded proteins. Predictions in 406 translocation-related human proteins show that they are significantly enriched in disorder (43.3% vs. 20.7% in all human proteins), they have fewer Pfam domains, and their translocation breakpoints tend to avoid domain splitting. The vicinity of the breakpoint is significantly more disordered than the rest of these already highly disordered fusion proteins. In the unlikely event of domain splitting in fusion it usually spares much of the domain or splits at locations where the newly exposed hydrophobic surface area approximates that of an intact domain. The mechanisms of action of fusion proteins suggest that in most cases their structural disorder is also essential to the acquired oncogenic function, enabling the long-range structural communication of remote binding and/or catalytic elements. In this respect, there are three major mechanisms that contribute to generating an oncogenic signal: (i) a phosphorylation site and a tyrosine-kinase domain are fused, and structural disorder of the intervening region enables intramolecular phosphorylation (e.g., BCR-ABL); (ii) a dimerisation domain fuses with a tyrosine kinase domain and disorder enables the two subunits within the homodimer to engage in permanent intermolecular phosphorylations (e.g., TFG-ALK); (iii) the fusion of a DNA-binding element to a transactivator domain results in an aberrant transcription factor that causes severe misregulation of transcription (e.g. EWS-ATF). Our findings also suggest novel strategies of intervention against the ensuing neoplastic transformations
    corecore