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Publication
Journal: Science
November/6/2003
Abstract
We have previously shown correction of X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency [SCID-X1, also known as gamma chain (gamma(c)) deficiency] in 9 out of 10 patients by retrovirus-mediated gamma(c) gene transfer into autologous CD34 bone marrow cells. However, almost 3 years after gene therapy, uncontrolled exponential clonal proliferation of mature T cells (with gammadelta+ or alphabeta+ T cell receptors) has occurred in the two youngest patients. Both patients' clones showed retrovirus vector integration in proximity to the LMO2 proto-oncogene promoter, leading to aberrant transcription and expression of LMO2. Thus, retrovirus vector insertion can trigger deregulated premalignant cell proliferation with unexpected frequency, most likely driven by retrovirus enhancer activity on the LMO2 gene promoter.
Publication
Journal: Journal of Clinical Investigation
October/6/2008
Abstract
Previously, several individuals with X-linked SCID (SCID-X1) were treated by gene therapy to restore the missing IL-2 receptor gamma (IL2RG) gene to CD34+ BM precursor cells using gammaretroviral vectors. While 9 of 10 patients were successfully treated, 4 of the 9 developed T cell leukemia 31-68 months after gene therapy. In 2 of these cases, blast cells contained activating vector insertions near the LIM domain-only 2 (LMO2) proto-oncogene. Here, we report data on the 2 most recent adverse events, which occurred in patients 7 and 10. In patient 10, blast cells contained an integrated vector near LMO2 and a second integrated vector near the proto-oncogene BMI1. In patient 7, blast cells contained an integrated vector near a third proto-oncogene,CCND2. Additional genetic abnormalities in the patients' blast cells included chromosomal translocations, gain-of-function mutations activating NOTCH1, and copy number changes, including deletion of tumor suppressor gene CDKN2A, 6q interstitial losses, and SIL-TAL1 rearrangement. These findings functionally specify a genetic network that controls growth in T cell progenitors. Chemotherapy led to sustained remission in 3 of the 4 cases of T cell leukemia, but failed in the fourth. Successful chemotherapy was associated with restoration of polyclonal transduced T cell populations. As a result, the treated patients continued to benefit from therapeutic gene transfer.
Publication
Journal: Journal of Clinical Investigation
October/6/2008
Abstract
X-linked SCID (SCID-X1) is amenable to correction by gene therapy using conventional gammaretroviral vectors. Here, we describe the occurrence of clonal T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) promoted by insertional mutagenesis in a completed gene therapy trial of 10 SCID-X1 patients. Integration of the vector in an antisense orientation 35 kb upstream of the protooncogene LIM domain only 2 (LMO2) caused overexpression of LMO2 in the leukemic clone. However, leukemogenesis was likely precipitated by the acquisition of other genetic abnormalities unrelated to vector insertion, including a gain-of-function mutation in NOTCH1, deletion of the tumor suppressor gene locus cyclin-dependent kinase 2A (CDKN2A), and translocation of the TCR-beta region to the STIL-TAL1 locus. These findings highlight a general toxicity of endogenous gammaretroviral enhancer elements and also identify a combinatorial process during leukemic evolution that will be important for risk stratification and for future protocol design.
Publication
Journal: Cancer Cell
August/12/2002
Abstract
Human T cell leukemias can arise from oncogenes activated by specific chromosomal translocations involving the T cell receptor genes. Here we show that five different T cell oncogenes (HOX11, TAL1, LYL1, LMO1, and LMO2) are often aberrantly expressed in the absence of chromosomal abnormalities. Using oligonucleotide microarrays, we identified several gene expression signatures that were indicative of leukemic arrest at specific stages of normal thymocyte development: LYL1+ signature (pro-T), HOX11+ (early cortical thymocyte), and TAL1+ (late cortical thymocyte). Hierarchical clustering analysis of gene expression signatures grouped samples according to their shared oncogenic pathways and identified HOX11L2 activation as a novel event in T cell leukemogenesis. These findings have clinical importance, since HOX11 activation is significantly associated with a favorable prognosis, while expression of TAL1, LYL1, or, surprisingly, HOX11L2 confers a much worse response to treatment. Our results illustrate the power of gene expression profiles to elucidate transformation pathways relevant to human leukemia.
Publication
Journal: Cell Stem Cell
March/16/2011
Abstract
Combinatorial transcription factor (TF) interactions control cellular phenotypes and, therefore, underpin stem cell formation, maintenance, and differentiation. Here, we report the genome-wide binding patterns and combinatorial interactions for ten key regulators of blood stem/progenitor cells (SCL/TAL1, LYL1, LMO2, GATA2, RUNX1, MEIS1, PU.1, ERG, FLI-1, and GFI1B), thus providing the most comprehensive TF data set for any adult stem/progenitor cell type to date. Genome-wide computational analysis of complex binding patterns, followed by functional validation, revealed the following: first, a previously unrecognized combinatorial interaction between a heptad of TFs (SCL, LYL1, LMO2, GATA2, RUNX1, ERG, and FLI-1). Second, we implicate direct protein-protein interactions between four key regulators (RUNX1, GATA2, SCL, and ERG) in stabilizing complex binding to DNA. Third, Runx1(+/-)::Gata2(+/-) compound heterozygous mice are not viable with severe hematopoietic defects at midgestation. Taken together, this study demonstrates the power of genome-wide analysis in generating novel functional insights into the transcriptional control of stem and progenitor cells.
Publication
Journal: EMBO Journal
July/31/1997
Abstract
The LIM-only protein Lmo2, activated by chromosomal translocations in T-cell leukaemias, is normally expressed in haematopoiesis. It interacts with TAL1 and GATA-1 proteins, but the function of the interaction is unexplained. We now show that in erythroid cells Lmo2 forms a novel DNA-binding complex, with GATA-1, TAL1 and E2A, and the recently identified LIM-binding protein Ldb1/NLI. This oligomeric complex binds to a unique, bipartite DNA motif comprising an E-box, CAGGTG, followed approximately 9 bp downstream by a GATA site. In vivo assembly of the DNA-binding complex requires interaction of all five proteins and establishes a transcriptional transactivating complex. These data demonstrate one function for the LIM-binding protein Ldb1 and establish a function for the LIM-only protein Lmo2 as an obligatory component of an oligomeric, DNA-binding complex which may play a role in haematopoiesis.
Publication
Journal: New England Journal of Medicine
May/4/2004
Abstract
BACKGROUND
Several gene-expression signatures can be used to predict the prognosis in diffuse large-B-cell lymphoma, but the lack of practical tests for a genome-scale analysis has restricted the use of this method.
METHODS
We studied 36 genes whose expression had been reported to predict survival in diffuse large-B-cell lymphoma. We measured the expression of each of these genes in independent samples of lymphoma from 66 patients by quantitative real-time polymerase-chain-reaction analyses and related the results to overall survival.
RESULTS
In a univariate analysis, genes were ranked on the basis of their ability to predict survival. The genes that were the strongest predictors were LMO2, BCL6, FN1, CCND2, SCYA3, and BCL2. We developed a multivariate model that was based on the expression of these six genes, and we validated the model in two independent microarray data sets. The model was independent of the International Prognostic Index and added to its predictive power.
CONCLUSIONS
Measurement of the expression of six genes is sufficient to predict overall survival in diffuse large-B-cell lymphoma.
Publication
Journal: Nature
October/20/2009
Abstract
Activation of Janus kinase 2 (JAK2) by chromosomal translocations or point mutations is a frequent event in haematological malignancies. JAK2 is a non-receptor tyrosine kinase that regulates several cellular processes by inducing cytoplasmic signalling cascades. Here we show that human JAK2 is present in the nucleus of haematopoietic cells and directly phosphorylates Tyr 41 (Y41) on histone H3. Heterochromatin protein 1alpha (HP1alpha), but not HP1beta, specifically binds to this region of H3 through its chromo-shadow domain. Phosphorylation of H3Y41 by JAK2 prevents this binding. Inhibition of JAK2 activity in human leukaemic cells decreases both the expression of the haematopoietic oncogene lmo2 and the phosphorylation of H3Y41 at its promoter, while simultaneously increasing the binding of HP1alpha at the same site. Tauhese results identify a previously unrecognized nuclear role for JAK2 in the phosphorylation of H3Y41 and reveal a direct mechanistic link between two genes, jak2 and lmo2, involved in normal haematopoiesis and leukaemia.
Publication
Journal: Developmental Biology
July/1/1998
Abstract
In vertebrates, hematopoietic and vascular progenitors develop from ventral mesoderm. The first primitive wave of hematopoiesis yields embryonic red blood cells, whereas progenitor cells of subsequent definitive waves form all hematopoietic cell lineages. In this report we examine the development of hematopoietic and vasculogenic cells in normal zebrafish and characterize defects in cloche and spadetail mutant embryos. The zebrafish homologs of lmo2, c-myb, fli1, flk1, and flt4 have been cloned and characterized in this study. Expression of these genes identifies embryonic regions that contain hematopoietic and vascular progenitor cells. The expression of c-myb also identifies definitive hematopoietic cells in the ventral wall of the dorsal aorta. Analysis of b316 mutant embryos that carry a deletion of the c-myb gene demonstrates that c-myb is not required for primitive erythropoiesis in zebrafish even though it is expressed in these cells. Both cloche and spadetail mutant embryos have defects in primitive hematopoiesis and definitive hematopoiesis. The cloche mutants also have significant decreases in vascular gene expression, whereas spadetail mutants expressed normal levels of these genes. These studies demonstrate that the molecular mechanisms that regulate hematopoiesis and vasculogenesis have been conserved throughout vertebrate evolution and the clo and spt genes are key regulators of these programs.
Publication
Journal: Science Translational Medicine
November/5/2014
Abstract
Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome (WAS) is characterized by microthrombocytopenia, immunodeficiency, autoimmunity, and susceptibility to malignancies. In our hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy (GT) trial using a γ-retroviral vector, 9 of 10 patients showed sustained engraftment and correction of WAS protein (WASP) expression in lymphoid and myeloid cells and platelets. GT resulted in partial or complete resolution of immunodeficiency, autoimmunity, and bleeding diathesis. Analysis of retroviral insertion sites revealed >140,000 unambiguous integration sites and a polyclonal pattern of hematopoiesis in all patients early after GT. Seven patients developed acute leukemia [one acute myeloid leukemia (AML), four T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL), and two primary T-ALL with secondary AML associated with a dominant clone with vector integration at the LMO2 (six T-ALL), MDS1 (two AML), or MN1 (one AML) locus]. Cytogenetic analysis revealed additional genetic alterations such as chromosomal translocations. This study shows that hematopoietic stem cell GT for WAS is feasible and effective, but the use of γ-retroviral vectors is associated with a substantial risk of leukemogenesis.
Publication
Journal: Development (Cambridge)
March/6/2008
Abstract
Shifting sites of blood cell production during development is common across widely divergent phyla. In zebrafish, like other vertebrates, hematopoietic development has been roughly divided into two waves, termed primitive and definitive. Primitive hematopoiesis is characterized by the generation of embryonic erythrocytes in the intermediate cell mass and a distinct population of macrophages that arises from cephalic mesoderm. Based on previous gene expression studies, definitive hematopoiesis has been suggested to begin with the generation of presumptive hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) along the dorsal aorta that express c-myb and runx1. Here we show, using a combination of gene expression analyses, prospective isolation approaches, transplantation, and in vivo lineage-tracing experiments, that definitive hematopoiesis initiates through committed erythromyeloid progenitors (EMPs) in the posterior blood island (PBI) that arise independently of HSCs. EMPs isolated by coexpression of fluorescent transgenes driven by the lmo2 and gata1 promoters exhibit an immature, blastic morphology and express only erythroid and myeloid genes. Transplanted EMPs home to the PBI, show limited proliferative potential, and do not seed subsequent hematopoietic sites such as the thymus or pronephros. In vivo fate-mapping studies similarly demonstrate that EMPs possess only transient proliferative potential, with differentiated progeny remaining largely within caudal hematopoietic tissue. Additional fate mapping of mesodermal derivatives in mid-somitogenesis embryos suggests that EMPs are born directly in the PBI. These studies provide phenotypic and functional analyses of the first hematopoietic progenitors in the zebrafish embryo and demonstrate that definitive hematopoiesis proceeds through two distinct waves during embryonic development.
Publication
Journal: Blood
May/15/2009
Abstract
miRNAs are small RNA molecules binding to partially complementary sites in the 3'-UTR of target transcripts and repressing their expression. miRNAs orchestrate multiple cellular functions and play critical roles in cell differentiation and cancer development. We analyzed miRNA profiles in B-cell subsets during peripheral B-cell differentiation as well as in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) cells. Our results show temporal changes in the miRNA expression during B-cell differentiation with a highly unique miRNA profile in germinal center (GC) lymphocytes. We provide experimental evidence that these changes may be physiologically relevant by demonstrating that GC-enriched hsa-miR-125b down-regulates the expression of IRF4 and PRDM1/BLIMP1, and memory B cell-enriched hsa-miR-223 down-regulates the expression of LMO2. We further demonstrate that although an important component of the biology of a malignant cell is inherited from its nontransformed cellular progenitor-GC centroblasts-aberrant miRNA expression is acquired upon cell transformation. A 9-miRNA signature was identified that could precisely differentiate the 2 major subtypes of DLBCL. Finally, expression of some of the miRNAs in this signature is correlated with clinical outcome of uniformly treated DLBCL patients.
Publication
Journal: Nature
February/11/2011
Abstract
Neuroblastoma is a childhood cancer of the sympathetic nervous system that accounts for approximately 10% of all paediatric oncology deaths. To identify genetic risk factors for neuroblastoma, we performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) on 2,251 patients and 6,097 control subjects of European ancestry from four case series. Here we report a significant association within LIM domain only 1 (LMO1) at 11p15.4 (rs110419, combined P = 5.2 × 10(-16), odds ratio of risk allele = 1.34 (95% confidence interval 1.25-1.44)). The signal was enriched in the subset of patients with the most aggressive form of the disease. LMO1 encodes a cysteine-rich transcriptional regulator, and its paralogues (LMO2, LMO3 and LMO4) have each been previously implicated in cancer. In parallel, we analysed genome-wide DNA copy number alterations in 701 primary tumours. We found that the LMO1 locus was aberrant in 12.4% through a duplication event, and that this event was associated with more advanced disease (P < 0.0001) and survival (P = 0.041). The germline single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) risk alleles and somatic copy number gains were associated with increased LMO1 expression in neuroblastoma cell lines and primary tumours, consistent with a gain-of-function role in tumorigenesis. Short hairpin RNA (shRNA)-mediated depletion of LMO1 inhibited growth of neuroblastoma cells with high LMO1 expression, whereas forced expression of LMO1 in neuroblastoma cells with low LMO1 expression enhanced proliferation. These data show that common polymorphisms at the LMO1 locus are strongly associated with susceptibility to developing neuroblastoma, but also may influence the likelihood of further somatic alterations at this locus, leading to malignant progression.