Gene Summary

Gene:IL2RB; interleukin 2 receptor subunit beta
Aliases: CD122, IMD63, IL15RB, P70-75
Summary:The interleukin 2 receptor, which is involved in T cell-mediated immune responses, is present in 3 forms with respect to ability to bind interleukin 2. The low affinity form is a monomer of the alpha subunit and is not involved in signal transduction. The intermediate affinity form consists of an alpha/beta subunit heterodimer, while the high affinity form consists of an alpha/beta/gamma subunit heterotrimer. Both the intermediate and high affinity forms of the receptor are involved in receptor-mediated endocytosis and transduction of mitogenic signals from interleukin 2. The protein encoded by this gene represents the beta subunit and is a type I membrane protein. The use of alternative promoters results in multiple transcript variants encoding the same protein. The protein is primarily expressed in the hematopoietic system. The use by some variants of an alternate promoter in an upstream long terminal repeat (LTR) results in placenta-specific expression. [provided by RefSeq, Sep 2016]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:interleukin-2 receptor subunit beta
Source:NCBIAccessed: 29 August, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 29 August 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Taiwan
  • Loss of Heterozygosity
  • Triple Negative Breast Cancer
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Receptors, Interleukin
  • Up-Regulation
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Genetic Predisposition
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Microsatellite Repeats
  • Risk Factors
  • Cytokines, Interleukin-2
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interleukin-2 Receptor beta Subunit
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • JAK1
  • Acute Lymphocytic Leukaemia
  • Interleukin-15
  • Chromosome 22
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Receptors, Interleukin-15
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Mass Screening
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Signal Transduction
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Databases, Genetic
  • Natural Killer Cells
  • ZAP-70 Protein-Tyrosine Kinase
  • Young Adult
  • Soft Tissue Sarcoma
  • Janus Kinase 3
  • Cancer DNA
  • Soft Tissue Cancers
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Amino Acid Substitution
  • Single Nucleotide Polymorphism
  • T-Lymphocyte Subsets
  • ROC Curve
Tag cloud generated 29 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: IL2RB (cancer-related)

Ho KH, Chang CJ, Huang TW, et al.
Gene landscape and correlation between B-cell infiltration and programmed death ligand 1 expression in lung adenocarcinoma patients from The Cancer Genome Atlas data set.
PLoS One. 2018; 13(12):e0208459 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes are related to positive clinical prognoses in numerous cancer types. Programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1), a mediator of the PD-1 receptor, plays an inhibitory role in cancer immune responses. PD-L1 upregulation can impede infiltrating T-cell functions in lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD), a lung cancer subtype. However, associations between the expression of PD-L1 and infiltration of B cells (a major immunoregulatory cell) remain unknown. Therefore, we investigated the role of infiltrating B cells in LUAD progression and its correlation with PD-L1 expression. The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) LUAD data set was used to explore associations among B-cell infiltration, PD-L1 expression, clinical outcome, and gene landscape. Gene set enrichment analysis was used to explore putative signaling pathways and candidate genes. The drug enrichment analysis was used to identify candidate genes and the related drugs. We found that high B-cell infiltration was correlated with better prognoses; however, PD-L1 may interfere with the survival advantage in patients with high B-cell infiltration. The gene landscape was characterized comprehensively, with distinct PD-L1 levels in cell populations with high B-cell infiltration. We obtained five upregulated signaling pathways from the gene landscape: apoptosis, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α signaling via nuclear factor (NF)-κB, apical surface, interferon-α response, and KRAS signaling. Moreover, four candidate genes and their related target drugs were also identified, namely interleukin-2β receptor (IL2RB), IL-2γ receptor (IL2RG), Toll-like receptor 8 (TLR8), and TNF. These findings suggest that tumor-infiltrating B cells could act as a clinical factor in anti-PD-L1 immunotherapy for LUAD.

Hong CC, Sucheston-Campbell LE, Liu S, et al.
Genetic Variants in Immune-Related Pathways and Breast Cancer Risk in African American Women in the AMBER Consortium.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2018; 27(3):321-330 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications

Tasian SK, Loh ML, Hunger SP
Philadelphia chromosome-like acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Blood. 2017; 130(19):2064-2072 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Philadelphia chromosome (Ph)-like acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), also referred to as

Kong Y, Wu YL, Song Y, et al.
Ruxolitinib/nilotinib cotreatment inhibits leukemia-propagating cells in Philadelphia chromosome-positive ALL.
J Transl Med. 2017; 15(1):184 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: As one of the major treatment obstacles in Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph
METHODS: RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) and real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) were performed to analyze the gene expression profiles of the sorted LPCs and other cell fractions from patients with de novo Ph
RESULTS: RNA-Seq and qRT-PCR demonstrated that JAK2 was more highly expressed in the sorted LPCs than in the other cell fractions in de novo Ph
CONCLUSIONS: In summary, this pre-clinical study provides a scientific rationale for simultaneously targeting BCR-ABL and JAK2 activities as a promising anti-LPCs therapeutic approach for patients with de novo Ph

Chiu YC, Wang LJ, Lu TP, et al.
Differential correlation analysis of glioblastoma reveals immune ceRNA interactions predictive of patient survival.
BMC Bioinformatics. 2017; 18(1):132 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Recent studies illuminated a novel role of microRNA (miRNA) in the competing endogenous RNA (ceRNA) interaction: two genes (ceRNAs) can achieve coexpression by competing for a pool of common targeting miRNAs. Individual biological investigations implied ceRNA interaction performs crucial oncogenic/tumor suppressive functions in glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Yet, a systematic analysis has not been conducted to explore the functional landscape and prognostic significance of ceRNA interaction.
RESULTS: Incorporating the knowledge that ceRNA interaction is highly condition-specific and modulated by the expressional abundance of miRNAs, we devised a ceRNA inference by differential correlation analysis to identify the miRNA-modulated ceRNA pairs. Analyzing sample-paired miRNA and gene expression profiles of GBM, our data showed that this alternative layer of gene interaction is essential in global information flow. Functional annotation analysis revealed its involvement in activated processes in brain, such as synaptic transmission, as well as critical tumor-associated functions. Notably, a systematic survival analysis suggested the strength of ceRNA-ceRNA interactions, rather than expressional abundance of individual ceRNAs, among three immune response genes (CCL22, IL2RB, and IRF4) is predictive of patient survival. The prognostic value was validated in two independent cohorts.
CONCLUSIONS: This work addresses the lack of a comprehensive exploration into the functional and prognostic relevance of ceRNA interaction in GBM. The proposed efficient and reliable method revealed its significance in GBM-related functions and prognosis. The highlighted roles of ceRNA interaction provide a basis for further biological and clinical investigations.

Ma L, Zhang X, Wang Z, et al.
Establishment of a Novel Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS) Xenotransplantation Model.
Clin Lab. 2016; 62(9):1651-1659 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is a clonal disease of the elderly characterized by chronic cytopenia, dysplasia, and a high risk of progression to acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Up until now, few animal models that fully recapitulate clinical features of this disease have been available.
METHODS: This study aimed to establish a new MDS xenograft model utilizing a human MDS-derived cell line with heterozygous Y641C mutation of EZH2 (SKM-1). 1 x 107 SKM-1 cells were inoculated into anti-mouse CD122 monoantibody conditioned nonobese diabetic severe combined immunodeficiency (NOD/SCID) mice by intravenous injection. Decitabine was injected intraperitoneally for evaluation of epigenetic drugs in vivo.
RESULTS: It is shown that the heterozygous Y641C mutation in the EZH2 gene mutation, which may destabilize the protein (ᇞᇞG = 1.46 kcal/mol), can be found in SKM-1 cells. Most mice presented anemia and leukopenia at three to four weeks after inoculation. The peripheral blood and bone marrow smear showed prominent dysplasia on erythrocytes and granulocytes as well as monocytes.
CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that intravenous inoculation of cells from the human MDS-derived cell line prior to targeted depletion of CD122+ cells could provide a novel MDS-like xenotransplant mouse model. It is a useful tool for evaluating potential existing and novel therapeutics for MDS.

Chauvin JM, Pagliano O, Fourcade J, et al.
TIGIT and PD-1 impair tumor antigen-specific CD8⁺ T cells in melanoma patients.
J Clin Invest. 2015; 125(5):2046-58 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
T cell Ig and ITIM domain (TIGIT) is an inhibitory receptor expressed by activated T cells, Tregs, and NK cells. Here, we determined that TIGIT is upregulated on tumor antigen-specific (TA-specific) CD8⁺ T cells and CD8⁺ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) from patients with melanoma, and these TIGIT-expressing CD8⁺ T cells often coexpress the inhibitory receptor PD-1. Moreover, CD8⁺ TILs from patients exhibited downregulation of the costimulatory molecule CD226, which competes with TIGIT for the same ligand, supporting a TIGIT/CD226 imbalance in metastatic melanoma. TIGIT marked early T cell activation and was further upregulated by T cells upon PD-1 blockade and in dysfunctional PD-1⁺TIM-3⁺ TA-specific CD8⁺ T cells. PD-1⁺TIGIT⁺, PD-1⁻TIGIT⁺, and PD-1⁺TIGIT⁻ CD8⁺ TILs had similar functional capacities ex vivo, suggesting that TIGIT alone, or together with PD-1, is not indicative of T cell dysfunction. However, in the presence of TIGIT ligand-expressing cells, TIGIT and PD-1 blockade additively increased proliferation, cytokine production, and degranulation of both TA-specific CD8⁺ T cells and CD8⁺ TILs. Collectively, our results show that TIGIT and PD-1 regulate the expansion and function of TA-specific CD8⁺ T cells and CD8⁺ TILs in melanoma patients and suggest that dual TIGIT and PD-1 blockade should be further explored to elicit potent antitumor CD8⁺ T cell responses in patients with advanced melanoma.

Chang YT, Yao CT, Su SL, et al.
Verification of gene expression profiles for colorectal cancer using 12 internet public microarray datasets.
World J Gastroenterol. 2014; 20(46):17476-82 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIM: To verify gene expression profiles for colorectal cancer using 12 internet public microarray datasets.
METHODS: Logistic regression analysis was performed, and odds ratios for each gene were determined between colorectal cancer (CRC) and controls. Twelve public microarray datasets of GSE 4107, 4183, 8671, 9348, 10961, 13067, 13294, 13471, 14333, 15960, 17538, and 18105, which included 519 cases of adenocarcinoma and 88 normal mucosa controls, were pooled and used to verify 17 selective genes from 3 published studies and estimate the external generality.
RESULTS: We validated the 17 CRC-associated genes from studies by Chang et al (Model 1: 5 genes), Marshall et al (Model 2: 7 genes) and Han et al (Model 3: 5 genes) and performed the multivariate logistic regression analysis using the pooled 12 public microarray datasets as well as the external validation. The goodness-of-fit test of Hosmer-Lemeshow (H-L) showed statistical significance (P = 0.044) for Model 2 of Marshall et al in which observed event rates did not match expected event rates in subgroups of the model population. Expected and observed event rates in subgroups were similar, which are called well calibrated, in Models 1, 3 and 4 with non-significant P values of 0.460, 0.194 and 1.000 for H-L tests, respectively. A 7-gene model of CPEB4, EIF2S3, MGC20553, MS4A1, ANXA3, TNFAIP6 and IL2RB was pairwise selected, which showed the best results in logistic regression analysis (H-L P = 1.000, R (2) = 0.951, areas under the curve = 0.999, accuracy = 0.968, specificity = 0.966 and sensitivity = 0.994).
CONCLUSION: A novel gene expression profile was associated with CRC and can potentially be applied to blood-based detection assays.

Huang X, Qu P, Chen Y, et al.
Low expression of CD112 is associated with poor overall survival in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.
Hum Pathol. 2014; 45(9):1944-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
CD112 as an important ligand of CD226 can stimulate the natural killer (NK) cell-mediated target cell lysis. Previous studies have reported that CD112 is involved in cancer initiation and progression. However, its expression and clinical significance in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) have never been investigated. In this study, we used immunohistochemistry to examine CD112 expression in cancer and pericancer tissues from 159 HCC cases. Western blot and immunofluorescence were used to detect CD112 expression in HCC cell lines. χ(2) Test was used to assess the association of CD112 expression with clinicopathological characteristics, whereas Kaplan-Meier survival function and Cox proportional hazards regression model were used to explore the association between CD112 expression and clinical outcome of patients with HCC. Overall, CD112 expression was significantly reduced in HCC tissues when compared with adjacent pericancer liver tissues (P < .001). Western blot and immunofluorescence analyses showed that most HCC cell lines had low CD112 expression level. Furthermore, low CD112 expression was significantly associated with high serum α-fetoprotein level (P = .004) in patients with HCC. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that patients with low CD112 expression had poorer postsurgery overall survival than those with high CD112 expression (log-rank P = .045). In conclusion, our findings demonstrate that the down-regulation of CD112 may be an important mechanism through which HCC cells evade the natural killer cell-mediated immunosurveillance, and thus, CD112 may be a useful biomarker to assess the immunologic niche of HCC.

Man CH, Lam SS, Sun MK, et al.
A novel tescalcin-sodium/hydrogen exchange axis underlying sorafenib resistance in FLT3-ITD+ AML.
Blood. 2014; 123(16):2530-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Internal tandem duplication (ITD) of fms-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is associated with inferior clinical prognosis. Sorafenib is effective in clearing leukemic blasts in chemorefractory FLT3-ITD(+) AML, but leukemia progression invariably occurs. Mechanisms of drug resistance are not completely understood. We hypothesized that a gene encoding tescalcin (TESC), known to be upregulated at leukemia progression during continuous sorafenib treatment and activate an Na(+)/H(+) exchanger type-1 (NHE1), may underlie tyrosine kinase inhibitor resistance. TESC was highly expressed in FLT3-ITD(+) AML lines MOLM-13 and MV4-11, and its knockdown by small-interfering RNA lowered intracellular pH (pHi) and induced apoptosis. The results were recapitulated by treatment with an NHE1 inhibitor, 5-(N,N-hexamethylene) amiloride (HMA). Induction of sorafenib resistance in the MOLM-13 cell line (M13-RE) significantly increased its sensitivity to HMA. The later also enhanced suppression of FLT3 signaling by sorafenib in otherwise resistant cell lines. HMA treatment of MOLM-13 and MV4-11 as well as primary FLT3-ITD(+) AML cells significantly reduced leukemia initiation in anti-CD122-primed NOD/SCID mouse xenotransplantation. These observations provided novel information about the pathogenetic role of a TESC-NHE1-pHi axis in mediating sorafenib resistance in AML.

Gattazzo C, Martini V, Frezzato F, et al.
Cortactin, another player in the Lyn signaling pathway, is over-expressed and alternatively spliced in leukemic cells from patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Haematologica. 2014; 99(6):1069-77 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cortactin, an actin binding protein and Lyn substrate, is up-regulated in several cancers and its level is associated with increased cell migration, metastasis and poor prognosis. The identification that the Src kinase Lyn and its substrate HS1 are over-expressed in B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia and involved in resistance to chemotherapy and poor prognosis, prompted us to investigate the role of cortactin, an HS1 homolog, in the pathogenesis and progression of this disorder. In this study, we observed that cortactin is over-expressed in leukemic cells of patients (1.10 ± 0.12) with respect to normal B lymphocytes (0.19 ± 0.06; P=0.0065). Fifty-three percent of our patients expressed the WT mRNA and p80/85 protein isoforms, usually lacking in normal B lymphocytes which express the SV1 variant and the p70/75 protein isoforms. Moreover, we found an association of the cortactin overexpression and negative prognostic factors, including ZAP-70 (P<0.01), CD38 (P<0.01) and somatic hypermutations in the immunoglobulin heavy-chain variable region (P<0.01). Our results show that patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia express high levels of cortactin with a particular overexpression of the WT isoform that is lacking in normal B cells, and a correlation to poor prognosis, suggesting that this protein could be relevant in the pathogenesis and aggressiveness of the disease.

Le Noir S, Ben Abdelali R, Lelorch M, et al.
Extensive molecular mapping of TCRα/δ- and TCRβ-involved chromosomal translocations reveals distinct mechanisms of oncogene activation in T-ALL.
Blood. 2012; 120(16):3298-309 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chromosomal translocations involving the TCR loci represent one of the most recurrent oncogenic hallmarks of T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) and are generally believed to result from illegitimate V(D)J recombination events. However, molecular characterization and evaluation of the extent of recombinase involvement at the TCR-oncogene junction has not been fully evaluated. In the present study, screening for TCRβ and TCRα/δ translocations by FISH and ligation-mediated PCR in 280 T-ALLs allowed the identification of 4 previously unreported TCR-translocated oncogene partners: GNAG, LEF1, NKX2-4, and IL2RB. Molecular mapping of genomic junctions from TCR translocations showed that the majority of oncogenic partner breakpoints are not recombinase mediated and that the regulatory elements predominantly used to drive oncogene expression differ markedly in TCRβ (which are exclusively enhancer driven) and TCRα/δ (which use an enhancer-independent cryptic internal promoter) translocations. Our data also imply that oncogene activation takes place at a very immature stage of thymic development, when Dδ2-Dδ3/Dδ3-Jδ1 and Dβ-Jβ rearrangements occur, whereas the bulk leukemic maturation arrest occurs at a much later (cortical) stage. These observations have implications for T-ALL therapy, because the preleukemic early thymic clonogenic population needs to be eradicated and its disappearance monitored.

Spitz MR, Gorlov IP, Dong Q, et al.
Multistage analysis of variants in the inflammation pathway and lung cancer risk in smokers.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2012; 21(7):1213-21 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Tobacco-induced lung cancer is characterized by a deregulated inflammatory microenvironment. Variants in multiple genes in inflammation pathways may contribute to risk of lung cancer.
METHODS: We therefore conducted a three-stage comprehensive pathway analysis (discovery, replication, and meta-analysis) of inflammation gene variants in ever-smoking lung cancer cases and controls. A discovery set (1,096 cases and 727 controls) and an independent and nonoverlapping internal replication set (1,154 cases and 1,137 controls) were derived from an ongoing case-control study. For discovery, we used an iSelect BeadChip to interrogate a comprehensive panel of 11,737 inflammation pathway single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) and selected nominally significant (P < 0.05) SNPs for internal replication.
RESULTS: There were six SNPs that achieved statistical significance (P < 0.05) in the internal replication data set with concordant risk estimates for former smokers and five concordant and replicated SNPs in current smokers. Replicated hits were further tested in a subsequent meta-analysis using external data derived from two published genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and a case-control study. Two of these variants (a BCL2L14 SNP in former smokers and an SNP in IL2RB in current smokers) were further validated. In risk score analyses, there was a 26% increase in risk with each additional adverse allele when we combined the genotyped SNP and the most significant imputed SNP in IL2RB in current smokers and a 36% similar increase in risk for former smokers associated with genotyped and imputed BCL2L14 SNPs. CONCLUSIONS/IMPACT: Before they can be applied for risk prediction efforts, these SNPs should be subject to further external replication and more extensive fine mapping studies.

Lechner MG, Lade S, Liebertz DJ, et al.
Breast implant-associated, ALK-negative, T-cell, anaplastic, large-cell lymphoma: establishment and characterization of a model cell line (TLBR-1) for this newly emerging clinical entity.
Cancer. 2011; 117(7):1478-89 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Primary lymphomas of the breast are very rare (0.2-1.5% of breast malignancies) and the vast majority (95%) are of B-cell origin. Recently, 40 cases of clinically indolent anaplastic large-cell kinase (ALK)-negative, T-cell, anaplastic, non-Hodgkin lymphomas (T-ALCL) have been reported worldwide.
METHODS: A tumor biopsy specimen from a patient in this series was obtained for characterization. By using a human stromal feeder layer and IL-2, a novel cell line, TLBR-1, was established from this biopsy and investigated by using cytogenetics and various biomolecular methods.
RESULTS: Immunoperoxidase staining of the tumor biopsy showed a CD30/CD8/CD4 coexpressing T-cell population that was epithelial membrane antigen (EMA)(+) and perforin(+) . Multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of TCRγ genes showed monoclonality that suggested a T-cell origin, yet pan-T markers CD2/5/7, anaplastic large-cell kinase (ALK)-1, pancytokeratins, CD20, CD56, and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) by in situ hybridization (ISH) were negative. TLBR-1 is IL-2 dependent, has a relatively long doubling time (55 hours), and displays different cellular shapes in culture. Cytogenetic analysis of tumor and TLBR-1 cells confirmed a highly anaplastic cell population with a modal number of 47 chromosomes lacking t(2;5). PCR screens for EBV and human T-lymphotropic virus types 1 and 2 (HTLV-1/2) were negative. Fluorescence-activated cell-sorting (FACS) analysis showed strong positivity for CD4/8, CD30, CD71, and CD26 expression, and antigen presentation (HLA-DR(+) CD80(+) CD86(+) ), IL-2 signaling (CD25(+) CD122(+) ), and NK (CD56(+) ) markers, and Western blots demonstrated strong Notch1 expression. Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mouse TLBR-1 heterotransplants recapitulated the histology and marker characteristics of the original tumor.
CONCLUSIONS: TLBR-1, a novel ALK-negative, T-cell, anaplastic, large-cell lymphoma, closely resembles the original biopsy and represents an important tool for studying this newly recognized disease entity.

Zhang J, Xiang Y, Ding L, et al.
Using gene co-expression network analysis to predict biomarkers for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
BMC Bioinformatics. 2010; 11 Suppl 9:S5 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is the most common adult leukemia. It is a highly heterogeneous disease, and can be divided roughly into indolent and progressive stages based on classic clinical markers. Immunoglobin heavy chain variable region (IgVH) mutational status was found to be associated with patient survival outcome, and biomarkers linked to the IgVH status has been a focus in the CLL prognosis research field. However, biomarkers highly correlated with IgVH mutational status which can accurately predict the survival outcome are yet to be discovered.
RESULTS: In this paper, we investigate the use of gene co-expression network analysis to identify potential biomarkers for CLL. Specifically we focused on the co-expression network involving ZAP70, a well characterized biomarker for CLL. We selected 23 microarray datasets corresponding to multiple types of cancer from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) and used the frequent network mining algorithm CODENSE to identify highly connected gene co-expression networks spanning the entire genome, then evaluated the genes in the co-expression network in which ZAP70 is involved. We then applied a set of feature selection methods to further select genes which are capable of predicting IgVH mutation status from the ZAP70 co-expression network.
CONCLUSIONS: We have identified a set of genes that are potential CLL prognostic biomarkers IL2RB, CD8A, CD247, LAG3 and KLRK1, which can predict CLL patient IgVH mutational status with high accuracies. Their prognostic capabilities were cross-validated by applying these biomarker candidates to classify patients into different outcome groups using a CLL microarray datasets with clinical information.

Yip KT, Das PK, Suria D, et al.
A case-controlled validation study of a blood-based seven-gene biomarker panel for colorectal cancer in Malaysia.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2010; 29:128 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Colorectal cancer (CRC) screening is key to CRC prevention and mortality reduction, but patient compliance with CRC screening is low. We previously reported a blood-based test for CRC that utilizes a seven-gene panel of biomarkers. The test is currently utilized clinically in North America for CRC risk stratification in the average-risk North American population in order to improve screening compliance and to enhance clinical decision making.
METHODS: In this study, conducted in Malaysia, we evaluated the seven-gene biomarker panel validated in a North American population using blood samples collected from local patients. The panel employs quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) to analyze gene expression of the seven biomarkers (ANXA3, CLEC4D, TNFAIP6, LMNB1, PRRG4, VNN1 and IL2RB) that are differentially expressed in CRC patients as compared with controls. Blood samples from 210 patients (99 CRC and 111 controls) were collected, and total blood RNA was isolated and subjected to quantitative RT-PCR and data analysis.
RESULTS: The logistic regression analysis of seven-gene panel has an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.76 (95% confidence interval: 0.70 to 0.82), 77% specificity, 61% sensitivity and 70% accuracy, comparable to the data obtained from the North American investigation of the same biomarker panel.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results independently confirm the results of the study conducted in North America and demonstrate the ability of the seven biomarker panel to discriminate CRC from controls in blood samples drawn from a Malaysian population.

Marshall KW, Mohr S, Khettabi FE, et al.
A blood-based biomarker panel for stratifying current risk for colorectal cancer.
Int J Cancer. 2010; 126(5):1177-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is often curable and preventable using current screening modalities. Unfortunately, screening compliance remains low, partly due to patient dissatisfaction with faecal/endoscopic testing. Recent guidelines advise CRC screening should begin with risk stratification. A blood-based test providing clinically actionable CRC risk information would likely improve screening compliance and enhance clinical decision making. We analyzed 196 gene expression profiles to select candidate CRC biomarkers. qRT-PCR was performed on 642 samples to develop a 7-gene biomarker panel using 112 CRC/120 controls (training set) and 202 CRC/208 controls (independent, blind test set). Panel performance characteristics and disease prevalence (0.7%) were then used to develop a scale assessing an individual's current risk of having CRC based on his/her gene signature. A 7-gene panel (ANXA3, CLEC4D, LMNB1, PRRG4, TNFAIP6, VNN1 and IL2RB) discriminated CRC in the training set (area under the receiver-operating-characteristic curve (ROC AUC), 0.80; accuracy, 73%; sensitivity, 82%; specificity 64%). The independent blind test set confirmed performance (ROC AUC, 0.80; accuracy, 71%; sensitivity, 72%; specificity, 70%). Individual gene profiles were compared against the population results and used to calculate the current relative risk for CRC. We have developed a 7-gene, blood-based biomarker panel that can stratify subjects according to their current relative risk across a broad range in an average-risk population. Across the continuous spectrum of risk as defined by the current relative risk scale, it is possible to identify clinically meaningful reference points that can assist patients and physicians in CRC screening decision making.

Tong X, Zhang L, Zhang L, et al.
The mechanism of chemokine receptor 9 internalization triggered by interleukin 2 and interleukin 4.
Cell Mol Immunol. 2009; 6(3):181-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In previous study, we found that the chemokine receptor 9 (CCR9) was highly expressed on CD4+ T cells from patients with T-cell lineage acute lymphocytic leukemia (T-ALL) and mediated leukemia cell infiltration and metastasis. Combined use of interleukin 2 (IL-2) and IL-4 promoted the internalization of CCR9 and therefore attenuated leukemia cell infiltration and metastasis. In this study, we preliminarily investigated the mechanism of internalization of CCR9 on MOLT4 cell model (a human leukemia T-cell line, naturally expresses CCR9) and found that IL-2 upregulated the cell surface expression of IL-4Ralpha (CD124) greatly, whereas IL-4 had no significant influence on alpha (CD25) and beta subunits (CD122) of IL-2R. Moreover, specific inhibitors, such as staurosporine, H89 and heparin, inhibited internalization of CCR9, which indicated a role of protein kinase C (PKC) and G protein-coupled kinase 2 (GRK2), respectively. Furthermore, GRK2 was upregulated and translocated to cell membrane in IL-2 and IL-4 treated cells which indicated that PKC could be a prerequisite for GRK2 activity.

Wu HC, Chang CH, Wan L, et al.
IL-2 gene C/T polymorphism is associated with prostate cancer.
J Clin Lab Anal. 2006; 20(6):245-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cytokines are reported to be associated with the formation of prostate cancer. Our aim was to investigate whether C/T polymorphisms of the interleukin-2 (IL-2) gene and IL-2 receptor beta (IL-2RB) gene are associated with prostate cancer. We compared the frequency of the polymorphisms of the IL-2 gene and the IL-2RB gene between 96 patients with prostate cancer and 105 healthy male volunteers from the same area (age >60 years). They were followed for at least 5 years. There was a significant difference in distribution of the genotype of the IL-2 gene polymorphism between the prostate cancer group and the control group (P = 0.017). The distribution of the TT homozygote of the IL-2 gene was significantly higher in the cancer group (32.3%) than in the control group (16.2%). However, no significant statistical difference was found between the polymorphism of the IL-2 gene and prostate cancer in survival analysis during a 5-year follow up period (log rank test; P = 0.19). There was no significant difference in the distribution of the genotype of the IL-2RB gene polymorphism between controls and cancer patients (P = 0.388). This study suggests that the IL-2 gene may be associated with susceptibility to prostate cancer in the Taiwan population.

Berger R, Bernard OA
Interleukin-2 receptor beta chain locus rearrangement in a T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Pathol Biol (Paris). 2007; 55(1):56-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
A translocation t(1;22)(p13;q13) was detected in a child with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL). FISH studies showed that the breakpoint was located in the 5' part of the interleukin-2 receptor beta chain (IL2RB) locus, but could only be located distal to 1p13.3 on the partner chromosome. This is the first case of the IL2RB locus rearrangement in T-ALL. The localization of the breakpoint suggests that the chromosomal translocation results in deregulation of IL2RB expression.

Lee KN, Kang HS, Jeon JH, et al.
VDUP1 is required for the development of natural killer cells.
Immunity. 2005; 22(2):195-208 [PubMed] Related Publications
Vitamin D3 upregulated protein 1 (VDUP1) is a stress-response gene that is upregulated by 1,25(OH)2D3 in tumor cells. The in vivo roles of VDUP1 were investigated by producing mice lacking VDUP1 (VDUP1-/- mice). VDUP1-/- mice showed minimal changes in the development of T and B cells, but there was a profound reduction in the numbers of natural killer (NK) cells. As well, these mice showed decreased NK activity. In the VDUP1-/- mice, the expression of CD122 was reduced, demonstrating that VDUP1 is required for CD122 expression and NK maturation. In addition, severe lymphoid hyperplasia in the small intestine was observed in VDUP1-/- mice. Taken together, these results suggest that VDUP1 is a critical factor for the development and function of NK cells in vivo.

Lasota J, Wozniak A, Kopczynski J, et al.
Loss of heterozygosity on chromosome 22q in gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs): a study on 50 cases.
Lab Invest. 2005; 85(2):237-47 [PubMed] Related Publications
Mutational activation of KIT or PDGFRA is considered an early step in pathogenesis of gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs); however, other nonrandom genetic changes have also been identified. At least three common regions of deletions on chromosome 22q, which may harbor putative tumor suppressor genes, have been defined. However, mapping of these regions has been inconsistent. It has also been speculated that GI autonomous nerve tumors (GANTs), GISTs with ultrastructural features suggestive of autonomic nerve differentiation, are characterized by a specific deletion involving 22q13 cytogenetic region. This study was undertaken to evaluate loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on chromosome 22q in 50 GISTs, including 10 GANTs. Four tumors were incidental minimal lesions

Pende D, Spaggiari GM, Marcenaro S, et al.
Analysis of the receptor-ligand interactions in the natural killer-mediated lysis of freshly isolated myeloid or lymphoblastic leukemias: evidence for the involvement of the Poliovirus receptor (CD155) and Nectin-2 (CD112).
Blood. 2005; 105(5):2066-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
On the basis of recent clinical and experimental data, natural killer (NK) cells appear to play a crucial role in eradication of acute myeloid leukemias. In the present study, by exploiting our current knowledge on NK receptors and their ligands on target cells, we investigated the interactions between NK and leukemic cells. We show that the size of the NK cell subset expressing the killer immunoglobulin-like receptor (KIR) not engaged by the HLA-class I alleles of the patient parallels the degree of NK cytotoxicity against leukemic cells. A sharp down-regulation of HLA-class I molecules has been detected in various leukemias and it was more frequent in myeloid than in lymphoblastic leukemias. Analysis of the ligands for triggering NK receptors revealed the consistent expression of Poliovirus receptor (PVR) and Nectin-2 in myeloid leukemias. In contrast, major histocompatibility complex class I-related chain molecules A/B (MICA/B) and UL1b-binding protein (ULBPs) were either absent or weakly expressed. Accordingly, NK-mediated lysis of these leukemias was dependent on DNAM-1 but not NKG2D. The major role of NKp46 and NKp30 was also confirmed. The expression of PVR and/or Nectin-2 was less frequent in lymphoblastic leukemias. In most leukemias, both CD48 and NTBA were down-regulated. The correlation found between marker expression and susceptibility to lysis may reveal useful information for NK-based immunotherapy.

Lima M, Almeida J, Montero AG, et al.
Clinicobiological, immunophenotypic, and molecular characteristics of monoclonal CD56-/+dim chronic natural killer cell large granular lymphocytosis.
Am J Pathol. 2004; 165(4):1117-27 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Indolent natural killer (NK) cell lymphoproliferative disorders include a heterogeneous group of patients in whom persistent expansions of mature, typically CD56(+), NK cells in the absence of any clonal marker are present in the peripheral blood. In the present study we report on the clinical, hematological, immunophenotypic, serological, and molecular features of a series of 26 patients with chronic large granular NK cell lymphocytosis, whose NK cells were either CD56(-) or expressed very low levels of CD56 (CD56(-/+dim) NK cells), in the context of an aberrant activation-related mature phenotype and proved to be monoclonal using the human androgen receptor gene polymerase chain reaction-based assay. As normal CD56(+) NK cells, CD56(-/+dim) NK cells were granzyme B(+), CD3(-), TCRalphabeta/gammadelta(-), CD5(-), CD28(-), CD11a(+bright), CD45RA(+bright), CD122(+), and CD25(-) and they showed variable and heterogeneous expression of both CD8 and CD57. Nevertheless, they displayed several unusual immunophenotypic features. Accordingly, besides being CD56(-/+dim), they were CD11b(-/+dim) (heterogeneous), CD7(-/+dim) (heterogeneous), CD2(+) (homogeneous), CD11c(+bright) (homogeneous), and CD38(-/+dim) (heterogeneous). Moreover, CD56(-/+dim) NK cells heterogeneously expressed HLA-DR. In that concerning the expression of killer receptors, CD56(-/+dim) NK cells showed bright and homogeneous CD94 expression, and dim and heterogeneous reactivity for CD161, whereas CD158a and NKB1 expression was variable. From the functional point of view, CD56(-/+dim) showed a typical Th1 pattern of cytokine production (interferon-gamma(+), tumor necrosis factor-alpha(+)). From the clinical point of view, these patients usually had an indolent clinical course, progression into a massive lymphocytosis with lung infiltration leading to death being observed in only one case. Despite this, they frequently had associated cytopenias as well as neoplastic diseases and/or viral infections. In summary, we describe a unique and homogeneous group of monoclonal chronic large granular NK cell lymphocytosis with an aberrant activation-related CD56(-/+dim)/CD11b(-/+dim) phenotype and an indolent clinical course, whose main clinical features are related to concomitant diseases.

Vilpo J, Tobin G, Hulkkonen J, et al.
Surface antigen expression and correlation with variable heavy-chain gene mutation status in chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Eur J Haematol. 2003; 70(1):53-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recent studies have demonstrated that B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) consists of two clinical entities with either somatically hypermutated (M-CLL) or unmutated (UM-CLL) immunoglobulin variable heavy-chain (VH) regions. In view of the fact that the cellular biology of these two subsets of disease is currently unexplored, we performed an extensive analysis of the surface antigen expression and correlated this with the VH gene mutation status in a cohort of 32 CLL patients. Using polymerase chain reaction amplification and nucleotide sequencing, the VH genes were shown to be mutated in 10 cases (31%) and unmutated in 22 (69%). The expression of 27 surface membrane antigens in peripheral blood leukemic cells was analyzed by flow cytometry, measuring both the percentage of positive cells as well as the geometric mean fluorescence intensity (GMF). Most of the surface membrane antigens (CD5, CD11c, CD19, CD20, CD21, CD22, CD23, CD25, CD40, CD45, VD79b, CD80, CD95, CD122, CD124, CD126, CD130, CD154, IgM, and IgD) showed a similar expression pattern in both UM-CLL and M-CLL patients. The similarity of M-CLL and UM-CLL, as demonstrated here for the first time with many protein markers, indicates a considerably homogeneous phenotype in both subsets. Furthermore, CD27 was strongly expressed in all cases, which may suggest a memory cell phenotype for both M-CLL and UM-CLL. More positive cells in the UM-CLL group were observed regarding CD38, but CD38 was not a good predictor of VH gene mutation status. Seventy percent of the M-CLL cases, but only 36% of UM-CLL cases, were Ig-lambda+. The most striking differential expression, however, was observed in the two slicing variants of the common leukocyte antigen CD45, namely CD45RO and CD45RA. CD45RO expression was significantly associated with M-CLL, whereas the GMF intensity of CD45RA tended to be associated with UM-CLL. The role of these CD45 splicing variants in the pathogenesis of CLL deserves further investigation.

Shao RH, Tian X, Gorgun G, et al.
Arginine butyrate increases the cytotoxicity of DAB(389)IL-2 in leukemia and lymphoma cells by upregulation of IL-2Rbeta gene.
Leuk Res. 2002; 26(12):1077-83 [PubMed] Related Publications
DAB(389)IL-2 (ONTAK) is a fusion protein consisting of the ADP-ribosyltransferase and membrane translocating domains of native diphtheria toxin and the full-length sequence for interleukin-2 (IL-2) gene. In vitro data demonstrates that DAB(389)IL-2 is cytotoxic to cells expressing the high affinity IL-2 receptor (IL-2R). In Phases I and II clinical trials of patients whose tumor cells express a component of the IL-2R, the response rates were 18% for B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) and 30% for cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). In this study, we examined the effects of arginine butyrate on IL-2R expression and susceptibility of leukemia cells to intoxication by DAB(389)IL-2. We demonstrate that the p75 subunit of the IL-2R (IL-2Rbeta) is upregulated in the presence of low concentrations of arginine butyrate (0.06mM) which had no direct growth inhibitory effect on the cells. To explore mechanisms of this upregulation, we examined the effect of 0.06mM arginine butyrate on relevant transcriptional elements and on histone deacetylase and found activation of cAMP response element (CRE) but not NFAT or NFKB, as well as inhibition of histone deacetylase (HDAC). Our results suggest that the effects of physiologically achievable concentrations of butyrate on IL-2R expression could be exploited to enhance the susceptibility of intermediate and low-affinity IL-2R expressing leukemia cells to DAB(389)IL-2.

Vilpo J, Hulkkonen J, Hurme M, Vilpo L
Surface membrane antigen expression changes induced in vitro by exogenous growth factors in chronic lymphocytic leukemia cells.
Leukemia. 2002; 16(9):1691-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The factors determining the growth and survival of cells in B chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) have remained poorly understood. We investigated the effects of optimal mitogen combinations (OMCs) on the expression of 26 surface membrane antigens among 33 CLL patients. The seven OMCs used were selected after pre-testing 14 combinations of (1) S. aureus Cowan I (SAC), (2) interleukin-2 (IL-2), (3) tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) and (4) 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol 13-acetate (TPA; also known as phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate or PMA). In flow cytometry we revealed that OMCs induced statistically highly significant upregulation of the expression of CD5, CD11c, CD19, CD22, CD23, CD25, CD38, CD40, CD45, CD45RO, CD95, CD126, CD130 and FMC7, and downregulation of CD20 and CD124 expression. Interestingly, the expression of CD27, CD45RA, CD79b, CD80, CD122 and that of the immunoglobulin gene superfamily members CD21, Ig-kappa, Ig-lambda, Ig-delta and Ig-micro were not significantly affected under similar conditions. The expression of several antigens was co-regulated, suggesting common regulatory pathways. These antigens include CD11c/CD5, CD11c/CD22, CD11c/CD126, CD11c/FMC7 as well as CD27/CD45, CD27/CD45RA and CD27/CD79b. Upregulation of surface antigen expression, induced by OMCs, should be applicable in antibody therapy in vitro and in vivo, and in negative stem cell selection for autotransplantation. Furthermore, the current strategy to enhance cell surface antigen expression may be a versatile tool to raise humoral and cell-mediated host defense against CLL cells. Upregulation of proteins mediating positive growth signals (eg CD25, CD40) and negative signals or apoptosis (eg CD95) may be used to sensitize cells to chemotherapy and programmed cell death.

Wong JC, Lee SB, Bell MD, et al.
Induction of the interleukin-2/15 receptor beta-chain by the EWS-WT1 translocation product.
Oncogene. 2002; 21(13):2009-19 [PubMed] Related Publications
EWS-WT1 is a chimeric transcription factor resulting from fusion of the N-terminal domain of the Ewing sarcoma gene EWS to the three C-terminal zinc fingers of the Wilms tumor suppressor WT1. This translocation underlies desmoplastic small round cell tumor (DSRCT), which is noted for the abundance of reactive stroma surrounding islets of tumor cells, suggestive of paracrine signals contributing to tumor cell proliferation. Hybridization to high-density oligonucleotide microarrays can be used to identify targets of EWS-WT1. Expression of EWS-WT1 from a tetracycline-regulated promoter leads to the induction of growth-associated genes, of which the most remarkable is the beta-chain of the interleukin-2/15 receptor (IL-2/15Rbeta). Potent transcriptional activation by the chimeric protein maps to two bindings sites within the IL-2/15Rbeta promoter. Analysis of primary DSRCT tumor specimens demonstrates high levels of IL-2/15Rbeta within the tumor cells, along with expression of IL-2 and IL-15 by the abundant hyperplastic endothelial cells within the reactive stroma. Activation of this cytokine signaling pathway is consistent with the nuclear localization of its downstream effectors, phosphorylated STAT3 and STAT5. These observations suggest that the transcriptional induction of a cytokine receptor by a tumor-associated translocation product enables a proliferative response of epithelial cancer cells to ligands secreted by the surrounding stroma.

Hulkkonen J, Vilpo L, Hurme M, Vilpo J
Surface antigen expression in chronic lymphocytic leukemia: clustering analysis, interrelationships and effects of chromosomal abnormalities.
Leukemia. 2002; 16(2):178-85 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a phenotypically distinguishable form of B-lymphoid leukemias. The regularity of surface membrane antigen expression patterns, their interrelationships as well as the effects of the three frequent chromosomal aberrations, ie 11q deletion, 13q deletion and trisomy 12, were investigated in 35 classic CLL cases by flow cytometry. The two-way cluster analysis of 31 individual antigens revealed three expression patterns: (1) most cells in most cases positive (CD5, CD19, CD20, CD23, CD27, CD40, CD45, CD45RA); (2) most cells in most cases negative (CD10, CD14, CD34, CD122, CD154, mIgG); and (3) a mixed pattern with a variable number of positive cases and a variable percentage of positive cells in individual cases (CD11c, CD21, CD22, CD25, CD38, CD45RO, CD79b, CD80, CD95, CD124, CD126, CD130, FMC7, mIgD, mIgkappa, mIglambda, mIgM). The expressions of several antigens were strongly interdependent, even when antigens belonged to entirely different gene families. Such antigen pairs were: CD11c/CD21; CD19/CD45; CD19/CD79b; CD22/CD45RA; CD23/Igkappa; CD25/mIgM; CD27/CD45; CD45/CD79b; CD45RA/Igkappa. In contrast, the expression of some antigens was mutually exclusive, the best examples being CD45RA/CD45RO, CD38/CD80 and CD45RA/CD80. Deletion of chromosome arm 11q attenuated expression of splicing variant CD45RA, but enhanced CD45RO expression. In contrast, cases of trisomy 12 were associated with enhanced CD45RA and attenuated CD45RO expression. Similarly, trisomy 12 was associated with enhanced CD27 and mIgkappa expression. The variable levels of signaling surface membrane antigens, their interactions and interference by genetic aberrations are likely to affect the clinical progression and drug response of CLL.

Meech SJ, McGavran L, Odom LF, et al.
Unusual childhood extramedullary hematologic malignancy with natural killer cell properties that contains tropomyosin 4--anaplastic lymphoma kinase gene fusion.
Blood. 2001; 98(4):1209-16 [PubMed] Related Publications
This report describes an unusual extramedullary hematologic malignancy in an 18-month-old child who presented with a capillary leak syndrome that evolved into hyperleukocytosis with malignant cells. The circulating tumor cells did not express an antigen profile typical of any subtype of leukemia commonly observed in children. Tumor cells were CD3(-)/CD56(+); had germline TCR genes; and strongly expressed CD30, epithelial membrane antigen, and anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) consistent with a null cell anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). The malignant cells contained a t(2;19)(p23;p13.1) that interrupted ALK and translocated it to the der(19). Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and nucleotide sequence analysis revealed fusion of ALK to tropomyosin 4, an ALK fusion partner not described previously in hematologic malignancies. The clinical presentation and phenotypic features of this malignancy were not typical for ALCL because tumor cells expressed both myeloid (CD13, CD33, HLA-DR) and natural killer (NK) cell antigens. The neoplastic cells most resembled NK cells because in addition to being CD3(-)/CD56(+) with germline TCR genes, these cells were CD25(+)/CD122(+)/granzyme B(+) and possessed the functional properties of immature NK cells. The unusual clinical presentation, immunophenotype, and functional properties of these neoplastic cells suggest that this malignancy may be derived from the putative myeloid-NK precursor cell. Furthermore co-expression of NK and ALCL features supports the concept that a minority of null-ALCL may be derived from NK cells and expands the spectrum of phenotypes that can be seen in tumors produced by ALK fusion proteins. (Blood. 2001;98:1209-1216)

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