Research IndicatorsGraph generated 01 September 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.
Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic. Tag cloud generated 01 September, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex
Specific Cancers (3)
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).
OMIM, Johns Hopkin University
Referenced article focusing on the relationship between phenotype and genotype.
International Cancer Genome Consortium.
Summary of gene and mutations by cancer type from ICGC
Cancer Genome Anatomy Project, NCI
COSMIC, Sanger Institute
Somatic mutation information and related details
GEO Profiles, NCBI
Search the gene expression profiles from curated DataSets in the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) repository.
Latest Publications: SLC45A3 (cancer-related)
Cui M, Hu Y, Bi Y, et al.Preliminary exploration of potential molecular therapeutic targets in recurrent and metastatic parathyroid carcinomas.
Int J Cancer. 2019; 144(3):525-532 [PubMed
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Parathyroid carcinoma (PC) is a rare endocrine malignancy. Surgical resection is curative for local lesions, while effective therapies are lacking for recurrent or metastatic PCs. To study whether targeted therapies could be applied in recurrent or metastatic PCs, potential therapeutic targets were identified with next-generation sequencing (NGS). DNA was extracted from formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded (FFPE) sections from 19 recurrent or metastatic PC samples. A panel of 560 genes was sequenced with NGS to identify genomic alterations at an average sequencing depth of 581×. In total, 190 genomic alterations were identified. Nine PC samples (47%) harbored at least one potentially actionable genomic alteration including in the after genes: ROS1 (5/19; 26%), PTEN (3/19; 16%), TSC1 (2/19; 11%), PIK3CA (1/19; 5%), AKT1 (1/19; 5%), MTOR (1/19; 5%), ERBB2 (1/19; 5%), NTRK1 (1/19; 5%), IDH1 (1/19; 5%) and FGFR3 (1/19; 5%). CDC73 mutations were detected in 9/19 (47%) PC samples. Additional recurrent genomic alterations were identified in MSH2 (15/19; 79%), AR (9/19; 47%), BCR (8/19; 42%), SLC45A3 (6/19; 32%), MAGI1 (5/19; 26%), ZNF521 (4/19; 21%), KMT2C (4/19; 21%) and NOTCH4 (4/19; 21%). Our study identified a relatively high frequency of potentially actionable genomic alterations in PC patients in a Chinese population for the first time. A series of recurrent mutant genes was detected as well. Our study contributes to both the selection of novel targeted therapies for PC and further molecular understanding of this refractory malignancy.
Murphy SJ, Kosari F, Karnes RJ, et al.Retention of Interstitial Genes between
Cancer Res. 2017; 77(22):6157-6167 [PubMed
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Qin F, Zhang Y, Liu J, Li HSLC45A3-ELK4 functions as a long non-coding chimeric RNA.
Cancer Lett. 2017; 404:53-61 [PubMed
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Gene fusions in cancer typically lead to the expression of a fusion protein or disrupt the expression of one of the parental genes. Here we report a new phenomenon whereby a fusion transcript functions as a long non-coding chimeric RNA (lnccRNA). This fusion RNA, SLC45A3-ELK4, generated by cis-splicing between neighboring genes, was found in prostate cancer. The fusion RNA encodes the same protein as ELK4. Intriguingly, we found that the fusion RNA level is less than 1% of wild type ELK4, unlikely to perturb the general pool of ELK4 protein. Nonetheless, when the fusion RNA, but not ELK4 is silenced, cell proliferation is inhibited in both androgen-dependent and castration-resistant prostate cancer cells. This growth arrest can be rescued by exogenous expression of the fusion and a mutant designed to prevent translation of the ELK4 protein. In the same setting, the mutant could also suppress CDKN1A and several other targets of SLC45A3-ELK4. In addition, similar to many long non-coding RNAs, the fusion RNA is enriched in the nuclear fraction. Altogether, these results indicate that SLC45A3-ELK4 regulates cancer cell proliferation by its transcript, not translated protein.
Choe EK, Lee Y, Cho JY, et al.Search for genetic factor association with cancer-free prostate-specific antigen level elevation on the basis of a genome-wide association study in the Korean population.
Eur J Cancer Prev. 2018; 27(5):453-460 [PubMed
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We investigated the genetic markers associated with elevated serum prostate-specific antigen (sPSA) levels to improve the predictive power of sPSA in screening for prostate cancer. A genome-wide association study was carried out among 4124 healthy Korean male adults using the Affymetrix Axiom Customized Biobank Genotyping Arrays for sPSA levels. A subgroup analysis for increased sPSA levels who underwent a prostate biopsy (n=64) was also carried out. We detected 11 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) near the Solute carrier family 45member 3, AGAP7P, MSMB, LOC101929917, and KLK3 genes associated with sPSA levels. The top SNP associated with the log of the sPSA levels was rs72434280 in the Solute carrier family 45 member 3 gene (P value, discovery set=2.98×10, replication set=7.31×10). A case-control study utilizing available biopsy reports (49 patients with normal biopsies vs. 15 patients with biopsies indicating cancer) for the sPSA more than 3 ng/ml group was carried out for the respective SNPs after adjusting for age. Only the SNPs near the KLK3 gene were associated with prostate cancer. In the model of the predictive elevation of sPSA level, adding the genetic risk score [area under the curve (AUC)=0.697] to age and BMI (AUC=0.602) significantly improved the results of the AUC (P<0.0001). We found seven SNPs associated with elevated prostate-specific antigen levels in healthy Korean men. Four SNPs were a novel marker in the Korean population. In men with increased prostate-specific antigen levels, genotyping SNP related to cancer-free elevation of sPSA level could be informative to decide the indication of prostate biopsy.
Prostate cancer is a clinically and pathologically heterogeneous disease with a broad spectrum of molecular abnormalities in the genome and transcriptome. One key feature is the involvement of chromosomal rearrangements creating fusion genes. Recent RNA-sequencing technology has uncovered that fusions which are not caused by chromosomal rearrangements, but rather meditated at transcription level, are common in both healthy and diseased cells. Such fusion transcripts have been proven highly associated with prostate cancer development and progression. To discover novel fusion transcripts, we analyzed RNA sequencing data from 44 primary prostate tumors and matched benign tissues from The Cancer Genome Atlas. Twenty-one high-confident candidates were significantly enriched in malignant vs. benign samples. Thirteen of the candidates have not previously been described in prostate cancer, and among them, five long intergenic non-coding RNAs are involved as fusion partners. Their expressions were validated in 50 additional prostate tumor samples and seven prostate cancer cell lines. For four fusion transcripts, we found a positive correlation between their expression and the expression of the 3' partner gene. Among these, differential exon usage and qRT-PCR analyses in particular support that SLC45A3-ELK4 is mediated by an RNA polymerase read-through mechanism.
Pin E, Henjes F, Hong MG, et al.Identification of a Novel Autoimmune Peptide Epitope of Prostein in Prostate Cancer.
J Proteome Res. 2017; 16(1):204-216 [PubMed
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There is a demand for novel targets and approaches to diagnose and treat prostate cancer (PCA). In this context, serum and plasma samples from a total of 609 individuals from two independent patient cohorts were screened for IgG reactivity against a sum of 3833 human protein fragments. Starting from planar protein arrays with 3786 protein fragments to screen 80 patients with and without PCA diagnosis, 161 fragments (4%) were chosen for further analysis based on their reactivity profiles. Adding 71 antigens from literature, the selection of antigens was corroborated for their reactivity in a set of 550 samples using suspension bead arrays. The antigens prostein (SLC45A3), TATA-box binding protein (TBP), and insulin-like growth factor 2 mRNA binding protein 2 (IGF2BP2) showed higher reactivity in PCA patients with late disease compared with early disease. Because of its prostate tissue specificity, we focused on prostein and continued with mapping epitopes of the 66-mer protein fragment using patient samples. Using bead-based assays and 15-mer peptides, a minimal peptide epitope was identified and refined by alanine scanning to the KPxAPFP. Further sequence alignment of this motif revealed homology to transmembrane protein 79 (TMEM79) and TGF-beta-induced factor 2 (TGIF2), thus providing a reasoning for cross-reactivity found in females. A comprehensive workflow to discover and validate IgG reactivity against prostein and homologous targets in human serum and plasma was applied. This study provides useful information when searching for novel biomarkers or drug targets that are guided by the reactivity of the immune system against autoantigens.
Ding G, Wang J, Feng C, et al.Lipocalin 2 over-expression facilitates progress of castration-resistant prostate cancer via improving androgen receptor transcriptional activity.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(39):64309-64317 [PubMed
] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is the lethal phenotype of prostate cancer. Lipocalin 2 (LCN2) is aberrantly expressed in many cancers including primary prostate cancer (PCa), but its role in CRPC has not been reported.
RESULTS: LCN2 expression was upregulated in human primary PCa and CRPC tissues. Overexpression of LCN2 promoted C4-2B and 22RV1 cell proliferation while knockdown of LCN2 markedly inhibited C4-2B and 22RV1 cell growth. LCN2 overexpression led to increased AR downstream gene SLC45A3 without upregulating AR expression. In the xenograft model, overexpression of LCN2 significantly promoted tumor growth.
METHODS: LCN2 expression was detected in primary PCa and CRPC tissues and cell lines C4-2B and 22RV1 using immunohistochemistry and western blotting, respectively. Serum LCN2 level was detected vi ELISA. Lentiviruses-mediated over-expression of LCN2 and LCN2 knockdown were performed in CRPC cell lines. Expressions of androgen receptor (AR) downstream genes was examined in cell lines, in CRPC tissues, and in animal models.
CONCLUSION: LCN2 could facilitate cell proliferation of CRPC via AR transcriptional activity. LCN2 could be a novel target in CRPC.
Hernández S, Font-Tello A, Juanpere N, et al.Concurrent TMPRSS2-ERG and SLC45A3-ERG rearrangements plus PTEN loss are not found in low grade prostate cancer and define an aggressive tumor subset.
Prostate. 2016; 76(9):854-65 [PubMed
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BACKGROUND: SLC45A3 is the second most common ERG partner in prostate cancer (PrCa). Coexisting TMPRSS2 and SLC45A3 rearrangements are found in a subset of cases, but the meaning is still unknown.
METHODS: SLC45A3-ERG and TMPRSS2-ERG rearrangements and their association with ERG and PTEN expression and with clinical and pathological features have been analyzed in 80 PrCa (PSMAR-Biobank, Barcelona, Spain). ERG and PTEN mRNA were assessed by qRT-PCR; TMPRSS2-ERG and SLC45A3-ERG by RT-PCR, FISH, and direct sequencing; and ERG expression by IHC. The endpoints were Gleason score (GS), stage, and PSA progression-free survival.
RESULTS: Single TMPRSS2-ERG was found in 51.6% GS ≤ 7 and 22.2% GS ≥ 8 tumors (P = 0.027). SLC45A3-ERG was found in 25 cases, 20 of them with concurrent TMPRSS2-ERG rearrangement: 11.5% GS = 6, 22.2% GS = 7, and 50% GS ≥ 8 tumors (P = 0.013). Double rearrangements were associated with higher levels of ERG mRNA (P = 0.04). Double rearrangement plus PTEN loss was detected in 0% GS = 6; 14.7% GS = 7, and 29.4% GS ≥ 8 tumors (P = 0.032). Furthermore, this triple change was present in 19.2% stage T3-4 but not in any of stage T2 tumors (P = 0.05). No relationship was found with PSA progression-free survival.
CONCLUSIONS: Single TMPRSS2-ERG translocation is associated with low grade PrCa. Subsequent development of SLC45A3-ERG results in higher ERG expression. The combination of double rearrangement plus PTEN loss, according to our series, is never found in low grade, low stage tumors. These findings could be potentially useful in therapeutic decision making in PrCa. Tumors with combined TMPRSS2-ERG/SLC45A3-ERG fusions plus PTEN loss should be excluded from watchful waiting and are candidates for intensive therapy. Prostate 76:854-865, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
The chimeric RNA, SLC45A3-ELK4, was found to be a product of cis-splicing between the two adjacent genes (cis-SAGe). Despite the biological and clinical significance of SLC45A3-ELK4, its generating mechanism has not been elucidated. It was shown in one cell line that the binding of transcription factor CTCF to the insulators located at or near the gene boundaries, inversely correlates with the level of the chimera. To investigate the mechanism of such cis-SAGe events, we sequenced potential regions that may play a role in such transcriptional read-through. We could not detect mutations at the transcription termination site, insulator sites, splicing sites, or within CTCF itself in LNCaP cells, thus suggesting a "soft-wired" mechanism in regulating the cis-SAGe event. To investigate the role CTCF plays in regulating the chimeric RNA expression, we compared the levels of CTCF binding to the insulators in different cell lines, as well as clinical samples. Surprisingly, we did not find an inverse correlation between CTCF level, or its bindings to the insulators and SLC45A3-ELK4 expression among different samples. However, in three prostate cancer cell lines, different environmental factors can cause the expression levels of the chimeric RNA to change, and these changes do inversely correlate with CTCF level, and/or its bindings to the insulators. We thus conclude that CTCF and its bindings to the insulators are not the primary reasons for differential SLC45A3-ELK4 expression in different cell lines, or clinical cases. However, they are the likely mechanism for the same cells to respond to different environmental cues, in order to regulate the expression of SLC45A3-ELK4 chimeric RNA. This response to different environmental cues is not general to other cis-SAGe events, as we only found one out of 16 newly identified chimeric RNAs showing a pattern similar to SLC45A3-ELK4.
Kim S, Shin C, Jee SHGenetic variants at 1q32.1, 10q11.2 and 19q13.41 are associated with prostate-specific antigen for prostate cancer screening in two Korean population-based cohort studies.
Gene. 2015; 556(2):199-205 [PubMed
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Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels are affected by non-cancerous conditions such as benign prostatic hyperplasia, inflammations, and inherited factors. To search for genetic variants associated with PSA levels, we conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) using a two-stage design. A total of 554 men from the Korean Cancer Prevention Study-II were used as a discovery stage and 1575 men collected by the Korean Genome Epidemiology Study were used as a replication stage. Analysis by Genome-wide Human single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array 5.0 was performed by using DNAs derived from venous blood. We analyzed the association between genetic variants and PSA levels using multivariate linear regression models, including age as a covariate. We detected 12 genome-wide significant signals on chromosome 1q32.1, 10q11.2, and 19q13.41 between PSA levels and SNPs. The top SNP associated with log PSA levels was rs2153904 in SLC45A3 (p values, 5.24×10(-9) to 2.00×10(-6)). We also investigated GWAS using 754 subjects from KCPS-II cohort whether our genome-wide significant loci were associated with a risk of prostate cancer (PCa) (200 PCa cases and 554 controls). Three of the SNPs on 10q11.2, rs7077830, rs2611489, and rs4631830, were associated with a risk of PCa. However, two loci, 1q32.1 and 19q13, were not significantly associated with a PCa risk. We suggest that our results for some but not all PCa risk SNPs to be associated with PSA levels could be used as an evidence for the advance of individual PCa screening strategies, such as applying a personalized cutoff value for PSA.
Chromosomal rearrangements and fusion genes play important roles in tumor development and progression. Four high-frequency prostate cancer-specific fusion genes were recently reported in Chinese cases. We attempted to confirm one of the fusion genes, USP9Y-TTTY15, by reverse transcription PCR, but detected the presence of the USP9Y-TTTY15 fusion transcript in cancer samples, nonmalignant prostate tissues, and normal tissues from other organs, demonstrating that it is a transcription-induced chimeric RNA, which is commonly produced in normal tissues. In 105 prostate cancer samples and case-matched adjacent nonmalignant tissues, we determined the expression level of USP9Y-TTTY15 and a previously reported transcription-induced chimeric RNA, SLC45A3-ELK4. The expression levels of both chimeric RNAs vary greatly in cancer and normal cells. USP9Y-TTTY15 expression is neither higher in cancer than adjacent normal tissues, nor correlated with features of advanced prostate cancer. Although the expression level of SLC45A3-ELK4 is higher in cancer than normal cells, and a dramatic increase in its expression from normal to cancer cells is correlated with advanced disease, its expression level in cancer samples alone is not correlated with any clinical parameters. These data show that both chimeric RNAs contribute less to prostate carcinogenesis than previously reported.
Svensson MA, Perner S, Ohlson AL, et al.A comparative study of ERG status assessment on DNA, mRNA, and protein levels using unique samples from a Swedish biopsy cohort.
Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morphol. 2014; 22(2):136-41 [PubMed
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The ERG rearrangement is identified in approximately 50% of prostate cancer screened cohorts and is known to be highly specific. This genetic aberration, most commonly leading to the TMPRSS2-ERG fusion, but also SLC45A3-ERG or NDRG1-ERG fusions, all leading to an overexpression of a truncated ERG protein. Most studies have applied in situ hybridization (FISH) methods or mRNA-based assays to investigate the ERG status. Recently, studies showed that ERG protein levels assessed by ERG antibodies can be used as a surrogate marker for ERG rearrangement. In the current study, we investigate ERG status on a series of diagnostic biopsies using DNA-based, mRNA-based, and protein-based assays. We formally compared 3 assay results (ie, FISH, fusion mRNA, and immunohistochemistry) to identify which method could be most appropriate to use when having limited amount of tissue. ERG rearrangement was found in 56% of the cases. Comparing ERG rearrangement status by FISH with ERG overexpression and TMPRSS2-ERG fusion transcript we found 95.1% (154/162, Fisher exact test 9.50E-36) and 85.2% (138/162, Fisher exact test 7.26E-22) concordance, respectively. We show that the ERG antibody highly correlates with the ERG rearrangement with high sensitivity and specificity. We also identified the most common TMPRSS2-ERG isoform in the majority of ERG rearranged cases. These results provide compelling evidence that the ERG antibody can be used to further investigate the role of ERG in prostate cancer.
Gene fusions involving the erythroblast transformation-specific (ETS) transcription factors ERG, ETV1, ETV4, ETV5, and FLI1 are a common feature of prostate carcinomas (PCas). The most common upstream fusion partner described is the androgen-regulated prostate-specific gene TMPRSS2, most frequently with ERG, but additional 5' fusion partners have been described. We performed 5' rapid amplification of cDNA ends in 18 PCas with ETV1, ETV4, or ETV5 outlier expression to identify the 5' fusion partners. We also evaluated the exon-level expression profile of these ETS genes in 14 cases. We identified and confirmed by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction the two novel chimeric genes OR51E2-ETV1 and UBTF-ETV4 in two PCas. OR51E2 encodes a G-protein-coupled receptor that is overexpressed in PCas, whereas UBTF is a ubiquitously expressed gene encoding an HMG-box DNA-binding protein involved in ribosome biogenesis. We additionally describe two novel gene fusion combinations of previously described genes, namely, SLC45A3-ETV4 and HERVK17-ETV4. Finally, we found one PCa with TMPRSS2-ETV1, one with C15orf21-ETV1, one with EST14-ETV1, and two with 14q133-q21.1-ETV1. In nine PCas (eight ETV1 and one ETV5), exhibiting ETS outlier expression and genomic rearrangement detected by FISH, no 5' fusion partner was found. Our findings contribute significantly to characterize the heterogeneous group of ETS gene fusions and indicate that all genes described as 5' fusion partners with one ETS gene can most likely be rearranged with any of the other ETS genes involved in prostate carcinogenesis.
Sun J, Tao S, Gao Y, et al.Genome-wide association study identified novel genetic variant on SLC45A3 gene associated with serum levels prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in a Chinese population.
Hum Genet. 2013; 132(4):423-9 [PubMed
] Related Publications
Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is a commonly used cancer biomarker for prostate cancer, and is often included as part of routine physical examinations in China. Serum levels of PSA may be influenced by genetic factors as well as other factors. A genome-wide association study (GWAS) conducted in a European population successfully identified six genetic loci that were significantly associated with PSA level. In this study, we aimed to identify common genetic variants that are associated with serum level of PSA in a Chinese population. We also evaluated the effects of those variants by creating personalized PSA cutoff values. A two-stage GWAS of PSA level was performed among men age 20-69 years and self-reported cancer-free participants that underwent routine physical examinations at several hospitals in Guangxi Province, China. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) significantly associated with PSA levels in the first stage of sample (N = 1,999) were confirmed in the second stage of sample (N = 1,496). Multivariate linear regression was used to assess the independent contribution of confirmed SNPs and known covariates, such as age, to the level of PSA. SNPs in three regions were significantly associated with levels of PSA in this two-stage GWAS, and had combined P values between 4.62 × 10(-17) and 6.45 × 10(-37). The three regions are located on 1q32.1 at SLC45A3, 10q11.23 at MSMB, and 19q13.33 at KLK3. The region 1q32.1 at SLC45A3 was identified as a novel locus. Genetic variants contributed significantly more to the variance of PSA level than known covariates such as age. Personalized cutoff values of serum PSA, calculated based on the inheritance of these associated SNPs, differ considerably among individuals. Identification of these genetic markers provides new insight into the molecular mechanisms of PSA. Taking individual variation into account, these genetic variants may improve the performance of PSA to predict prostate cancer.
Perner S, Rupp NJ, Braun M, et al.Loss of SLC45A3 protein (prostein) expression in prostate cancer is associated with SLC45A3-ERG gene rearrangement and an unfavorable clinical course.
Int J Cancer. 2013; 132(4):807-12 [PubMed
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The majority of prostate cancer harbors recurrent gene fusions involving ETS transcription factors, most commonly ERG. The second most common 5' fusion partner after TMPRSS2 is SLC45A3. The aim of our study was to quantify the protein expression of ERG, TMPRSS2 and SLC45A3 in prostate cancer to assess for diagnostic or prognostic utility. Six hundred and forty consecutive prostate cancer cases in tissue microarray format were immunohistochemically analyzed for ERG, TMPRSS2 and SLC45A3 protein. Resultant protein expression data was correlated to the respective gene rearrangement status and clinico-pathological parameters including PSA follow up times. ERG showed no expression in benign prostate glands. In cancer tissue, ERG protein expression showed a high rate of concordance with an underlying ERG rearrangement (91.5%). SLC45A3 showed a weaker expression in cancer as compared to benign tissue, which was pronounced in cases with SLC45A3-ERG fusion. Importantly, SLC45A3 down regulation was significantly associated with shorter PSA-free survival times. In contrast, TMPRSS2 was neither differentially expressed nor did it show a correlation between protein expression and rearrangement status. This study provides first evidence that the expression of SLC45A3 protein is down regulated through SLC45A3-ERG fusion in prostate cancer. Moreover, these cases may represent a distinct molecular subclass of ERG rearranged prostate cancer with distinct clinical features. This study also confirms that ERG protein expression is predominantly found in prostate carcinomas with ERG gene rearrangement and does not occur in benign glands.
Using a series of detailed experiments, Zhang and colleagues establish that the prostate cancer RNA chimera SLC45A3-ELK4 is generated by cis-splicing between the 2 adjacent genes and does not involve DNA rearrangements or trans-splicing. The chimera expression is induced by androgen treatment likely by overcoming the read-through block imposed by the intergenic CCCTC insulators bound by CCCTC-binding factor repressor protein. The chimeric transcript, but not wild-type ELK4, is shown to augment prostate cancer cell proliferation.
Zhang Y, Gong M, Yuan H, et al.Chimeric transcript generated by cis-splicing of adjacent genes regulates prostate cancer cell proliferation.
Cancer Discov. 2012; 2(7):598-607 [PubMed
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UNLABELLED: Gene fusion is a common event in cancer. The fusion RNA and protein products often play causal roles in tumorigenesis and therefore represent ideal diagnostic and therapeutic targets. Formerly, fusion chimeric products in cancer were thought to be produced solely by chromosomal translocation. Here, we show that a chimeric SLC45A3-ELK4 RNA is generated in the absence of chromosomal rearrangement. We showed that it is not a product of RNA trans-splicing, but formed by cis-splicing of adjacent genes/read-through. The binding of CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) to the insulator sequences inversely correlates with the expression of the chimera transcript. The SLC45A3-ELK4 fusion, but not wild-type, ELK4 plays important roles in regulating cell growth in both androgen-dependent and -independent prostate cancer cells. The level of the chimeric transcript correlates with disease progression, with the highest levels in prostate cancer metastases. Our results suggest that gene fusions can arise from cis-splicing of adjacent genes without corresponding DNA changes.
SIGNIFICANCE: With the absence of corresponding DNA rearrangement, chimeric fusion SLC45A3-ELK4 transcript in prostate cancer cells is generated by cis-splicing of adjacent genes/gene read-through instead of trans-splicing. SLC45A3-ELK4 controls prostate cancer cell proliferation, and the chimera level correlates with prostate cancer disease progression.
Miura K, Ishida K, Fujibuchi W, et al.Differentiating rectal carcinoma by an immunohistological analysis of carcinomas of pelvic organs based on the NCBI Literature Survey and the Human Protein Atlas database.
Surg Today. 2012; 42(6):515-25 [PubMed
] Related Publications
The treatments and prognoses of pelvic organ carcinomas differ, depending on whether the primary tumor originated in the rectum, urinary bladder, prostate, ovary, or uterus; therefore, it is essential to diagnose pathologically the primary origin and stages of these tumors. To establish the panels of immunohistochemical markers for differential diagnosis, we reviewed 91 of the NCBI articles on these topics and found that the results correlated closely with those of the public protein database, the Human Protein Atlas. The results revealed the panels of immunohistochemical markers for the differential diagnosis of rectal adenocarcinoma, in which [+] designates positivity in rectal adenocarcinoma and [-] designates negativity in rectal adenocarcinoma: from bladder adenocarcinoma, CDX2[+], VIL1[+], KRT7[-], THBD[-] and UPK3A[-]; from prostate adenocarcinoma, CDX2[+], VIL1[+], CEACAM5[+], KLK3(PSA)[-], ACPP(PAP)[-] and SLC45A3(prostein)[-]; and from ovarian mucinous adenocarcinoma, CEACAM5[+], VIL1[+], CDX2[+], KRT7[-] and MUC5AC[-]. The panels of markers distinguishing ovarian serous adenocarcinoma, cervical carcinoma, and endometrial adenocarcinoma were also represented. Such a comprehensive review on the differential diagnosis of carcinomas of pelvic organs has not been reported before. Thus, much information has been accumulated in public databases to provide an invaluable resource for clinicians and researchers.
Paulo P, Barros-Silva JD, Ribeiro FR, et al.FLI1 is a novel ETS transcription factor involved in gene fusions in prostate cancer.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2012; 51(3):240-9 [PubMed
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To characterize the pattern of ETS rearrangements and to uncover novel ETS fusion genes, we analyzed 200 prostate carcinomas (PCa) with TaqMan low-density arrays (TLDAs), followed by selective analyses with fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), RT-PCR, and sequencing. Besides confirming the recurrent presence of ERG, ETV1, ETV4, and ETV5 rearrangements, we here report FLI1 as the fifth ETS transcription factor involved in fusion genes in prostate cancer. Outlier expression of the FLI1 gene was detected by TLDAs in one PCa that showed relative overexpression of FLI1 exons 4:5 as compared with FLI1 exons 2:3. A structural rearrangement was found using FISH probes flanking the FLI1 gene and RT-PCR and sequencing analyses showed fusion of SLC45A3 exon 1 with FLI1 exon 3. Interestingly, we found four cases with two different ETS rearrangements in the index tumor, thus revealing intratumor genetic heterogeneity. Correlation analysis with clinico-pathological data showed association of ERG rearrangements with locally advanced disease (pT3, P = 0.007) and MYC overexpression (P = 0.001), and association of ETV1 rearrangements with PTEN downregulation (P = 0.015). We report that FLI1 is a novel ETS transcription factor involved in gene fusions in prostate cancer and that intratumor genetic heterogeneity of ETS rearrangements can occasionally be found in index primary tumors.
BACKGROUND: Readthrough fusions across adjacent genes in the genome, or transcription-induced chimeras (TICs), have been estimated using expressed sequence tag (EST) libraries to involve 4-6% of all genes. Deep transcriptional sequencing (RNA-Seq) now makes it possible to study the occurrence and expression levels of TICs in individual samples across the genome.
METHODS: We performed single-end RNA-Seq on three human prostate adenocarcinoma samples and their corresponding normal tissues, as well as brain and universal reference samples. We developed two bioinformatics methods to specifically identify TIC events: a targeted alignment method using artificial exon-exon junctions within 200,000 bp from adjacent genes, and genomic alignment allowing splicing within individual reads. We performed further experimental verification and characterization of selected TIC and fusion events using quantitative RT-PCR and comparative genomic hybridization microarrays.
RESULTS: Targeted alignment against artificial exon-exon junctions yielded 339 distinct TIC events, including 32 gene pairs with multiple isoforms. The false discovery rate was estimated to be 1.5%. Spliced alignment to the genome was less sensitive, finding only 18% of those found by targeted alignment in 33-nt reads and 59% of those in 50-nt reads. However, spliced alignment revealed 30 cases of TICs with intervening exons, in addition to distant inversions, scrambled genes, and translocations. Our findings increase the catalog of observed TIC gene pairs by 66%.We verified 6 of 6 predicted TICs in all prostate samples, and 2 of 5 predicted novel distant gene fusions, both private events among 54 prostate tumor samples tested. Expression of TICs correlates with that of the upstream gene, which can explain the prostate-specific pattern of some TIC events and the restriction of the SLC45A3-ELK4 e4-e2 TIC to ERG-negative prostate samples, as confirmed in 20 matched prostate tumor and normal samples and 9 lung cancer cell lines.
CONCLUSIONS: Deep transcriptional sequencing and analysis with targeted and spliced alignment methods can effectively identify TIC events across the genome in individual tissues. Prostate and reference samples exhibit a wide range of TIC events, involving more genes than estimated previously using ESTs. Tissue specificity of TIC events is correlated with expression patterns of the upstream gene. Some TIC events, such as MSMB-NCOA4, may play functional roles in cancer.
Androgen dependent induction of the ETS related gene (ERG) expression in more than half of all prostate cancers results from gene fusions involving regulatory sequence of androgen regulated genes (i.e. TMPRSS2, SLC45A3 and NDRG1) and protein coding sequence of the ERG. Emerging studies in experimental models underscore the functions of ERG in prostate tumorigenesis. However, biological and biochemical functions of ERG in prostate cancer (CaP) remain to be elucidated. This study suggests that ERG activation plays a role in prostaglandin signaling because knockdown of ERG expression in TMPRSS2-ERG fusion containing CaP cells leads to altered levels of the 15-hydroxy-prostaglandin dehydrogenase (HPGD), a tumor suppressor and prostaglandin catabolizing enzyme, and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) . We demonstrate that HPGD expression is regulated by the binding of the ERG protein to the core promoter of this gene. Moreover, prostaglandin E2 dependent cell growth and urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA) expression are also affected by ERG knockdown. Together, these data imply that the ERG oncoprotein in CaP cells positively influence prostaglandin mediated signaling, which may contribute to tumor progression.
Aneuploidy is a hallmark of human cancers, but most mouse cancer models lack the extensive aneuploidy seen in many human tumors. The zebrafish is becoming an increasingly popular model for studying cancer. Here we report that malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors (MPNSTs) that arise in zebrafish as a result of mutations in either ribosomal protein (rp) genes or in p53 are highly aneuploid. Karyotyping reveals that these tumors frequently harbor near-triploid numbers of chromosomes, and they vary in chromosome number from cell to cell within a single tumor. Using array comparative genomic hybridization, we found that, as in human cancers, certain fish chromosomes are preferentially overrepresented, whereas others are underrepresented in many MPNSTs. In addition, we obtained evidence for recurrent subchromosomal amplifications and deletions that may contain genes involved in cancer initiation or progression. These focal amplifications encompassed several genes whose amplification is observed in human tumors, including met, cyclinD2, slc45a3, and cdk6. One focal amplification included fgf6a. Increasing fgf signaling via a mutation that overexpresses fgf8 accelerated the onset of MPNSTs in fish bearing a mutation in p53, suggesting that fgf6a itself may be a driver of MPNSTs. Our results suggest that the zebrafish is a useful model in which to study aneuploidy in human cancer and in which to identify candidate genes that may act as drivers in fish and potentially also in human tumors.
Miyagi Y, Sasaki T, Fujinami K, et al.ETS family-associated gene fusions in Japanese prostate cancer: analysis of 194 radical prostatectomy samples.
Mod Pathol. 2010; 23(11):1492-8 [PubMed
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The incidence and clinical significance of the TMPRSS2:ERG gene fusion in prostate cancer has been investigated with contradictory results. It is now common knowledge that significant variability in gene alterations exists according to ethnic background in various kinds of cancer. In this study, we evaluated gene fusions involving the ETS gene family in Japanese prostate cancer. Total RNA from 194 formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded prostate cancer samples obtained by radical prostatectomy was subjected to reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction to detect the common TMPRSS2:ERG T1-E4 and T1-E5 fusion transcripts and five other non-TMPRSS2:ERG fusion transcripts. We identified 54 TMPRSS2:ERG-positive cases (54/194, 28%) and two HNRPA2B1:ETV1-positive cases (2/194, 1%). The SLC45A3-ELK4 transcript, a fusion transcript without structural gene rearrangement, was detectable in five cases (5/194, 3%). The frequencies of both TMPRSS2:ERG- and non-TMPRSS2:ERG-positive cases were lower than those reported for European, North American or Brazilian patients. Internodular heterogeneity of TMPRSS2:ERG was observed in 5 out of 11 multifocal cases (45%); a frequency similar to that found in European and North American cases. We found a positive correlation between the TMPRSS2:ERG fusion and a Gleason score of ≤7 and patient age, but found no relationship with pT stage or plasma prostate-specific antigen concentration. To exclude the possibility that Japanese prostate cancer displays novel TMPRSS2:ERG transcript variants or has unique 5' fusion partners for the ETS genes, we performed 5' RACE using fresh-frozen prostate cancer samples. We identified only the normal 5' cDNA ends for ERG, ETV1 and ETV5 in fusion-negative cases. Because we identified a relatively low frequency of TMPRSS2:ERG and other fusions, further evaluation is required before this promising molecular marker should be introduced into the management of Japanese prostate cancer patients.
Although recurrent gene fusions involving erythroblastosis virus E26 transformation-specific (ETS) family transcription factors are common in prostate cancer, their products are considered 'undruggable' by conventional approaches. Recently, rare targetable gene fusions involving the anaplastic lymphoma receptor tyrosine kinase (ALK) gene, have been identified in 1-5% of lung cancers, suggesting that similar rare gene fusions may occur in other common epithelial cancers, including prostate cancer. Here we used paired-end transcriptome sequencing to screen ETS rearrangement-negative prostate cancers for targetable gene fusions and identified the SLC45A3-BRAF (solute carrier family 45, member 3-v-raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B1) and ESRP1-RAF1 (epithelial splicing regulatory protein-1-v-raf-1 murine leukemia viral oncogene homolog-1) gene fusions. Expression of SLC45A3-BRAF or ESRP1-RAF1 in prostate cells induced a neoplastic phenotype that was sensitive to RAF and mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MAP2K1) inhibitors. Screening a large cohort of patients, we found that, although rare, recurrent rearrangements in the RAF pathway tend to occur in advanced prostate cancers, gastric cancers and melanoma. Taken together, our results emphasize the key role of RAF family gene rearrangements in cancer, suggest that RAF and MEK inhibitors may be useful in a subset of gene fusion-harboring solid tumors and demonstrate that sequencing of tumor transcriptomes and genomes may lead to the identification of rare targetable fusions across cancer types.
In humans, more than 30,000 chimeric transcripts originating from 23,686 genes have been identified. The mechanisms and association of chimeric transcripts arising from chromosomal rearrangements with cancer are well established, but much remains unknown regarding the biogenesis and importance of other chimeric transcripts that arise from nongenomic alterations. Recently, a SLC45A3-ELK4 chimera has been shown to be androgen-regulated, and is overexpressed in metastatic or high-grade prostate tumors relative to local prostate cancers. Here, we characterize the expression of a KLK4 cis sense-antisense chimeric transcript, and show other examples in prostate cancer. Using non-protein-coding microarray analyses, we initially identified an androgen-regulated antisense transcript within the 3' untranslated region of the KLK4 gene in LNCaP cells. The KLK4 cis-NAT was validated by strand-specific linker-mediated RT-PCR and Northern blotting. Characterization of the KLK4 cis-NAT by 5' and 3' rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) revealed that this transcript forms multiple fusions with the KLK4 sense transcript. Lack of KLK4 antisense promoter activity using reporter assays suggests that these transcripts are unlikely to arise from a trans-splicing mechanism. 5' RACE and analyses of deep sequencing data from LNCaP cells treated +/-androgens revealed six high-confidence sense-antisense chimeras of which three were supported by the cDNA databases. In this study, we have shown complex gene expression at the KLK4 locus that might be a hallmark of cis sense-antisense chimeric transcription.
The majority of prostate cancers harbor recurrent gene fusions between the hormone-regulated TMPRSS2 and members of the ETS family of transcription factors, most commonly ERG. Prostate cancer with ERG rearrangements represent a distinct sub-class of tumor based on studies reporting associations with histomorphologic features, characteristic somatic copy number alterations, and gene expression signatures. This study describes the frequency of ERG rearrangement prostate cancer and three 5 prime (5') gene fusion partners (ie, TMPRSS2, SLC45A3, and NDRG1) in a large prostatectomy cohort. ERG gene rearrangements and mechanism of rearrangement, as well as rearrangements of TMPRSS2, SLC45A3, and NDRG1, were assessed using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) on prostate cancer samples from 614 patients treated using radical prostatectomy. ERG rearrangement occurred in 53% of the 540 assessable cases. TMPRSS2 and SLC45A3 were the only 5' partner in 78% and 6% of these ERG rearranged cases, respectively. Interestingly, 11% of the ERG rearranged cases showed concurrent TMPRSS2 and SLC45A3 rearrangements. TMPRSS2 or SLC45A3 rearrangements could not be identified for 5% of the ERG rearranged cases. From these remaining cases we identified one case with NDRG1 rearrangement. We did not observe any associations with pathologic parameters or clinical outcome. This is the first study to describe the frequency of SLC45A3-ERG fusions in a large clinical cohort. Most studies have assumed that all ERG rearranged prostate cancers harbor TMPRSS2-ERG fusions. This is also the first study to report concurrent TMPRSS2 and SLC45A3 rearrangements in the same tumor focus, suggesting additional complexity that had not been previously appreciated. This study has important clinical implications for the development of diagnostic assays to detect ETS rearranged prostate cancer. Incorporation of these less common ERG rearranged prostate cancer fusion assays could further increase the sensitivity of the current PCR-based approaches.
A step toward the molecular classification of prostate cancer was the discovery of recurrent erythroblast transformation-specific rearrangements, most commonly fusing the androgen-regulated TMPRSS2 promoter to ERG. The TMPRSS2-ERG fusion is observed in around 90% of tumors that overexpress the oncogene ERG. The goal of the current study was to complete the characterization of these ERG-overexpressing prostate cancers. Using fluorescence in situ hybridization and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction assays, we screened 101 prostate cancers, identifying 34 cases (34%) with the TMPRSS2-ERG fusion. Seven cases demonstrated ERG rearrangement by fluorescence in situ hybridization without the presence of TMPRSS2-ERG fusion messenger RNA transcripts. Screening for known 5' partners, we determined that three cases harbored the SLC45A3-ERG fusion. To discover novel 5' partners in these ERG-overexpressing and ERG-rearranged cases, we used paired-end RNA sequencing. We first confirmed the utility of this approach by identifying the TMPRSS2-ERG fusion in a known positive prostate cancer case and then discovered a novel fusion involving the androgen-inducible tumor suppressor, NDRG1 (N-myc downstream regulated gene 1), and ERG in two cases. Unlike TMPRSS2-ERG and SCL45A3-ERG fusions, the NDRG1-ERG fusion is predicted to encode a chimeric protein. Like TMPRSS2, SCL45A3 and NDRG1 are inducible not only by androgen but also by estrogen. This study demonstrates that most ERG-overexpressing prostate cancers harbor hormonally regulated TMPRSS2-ERG, SLC45A3-ERG, or NDRG1-ERG fusions. Broader implications of this study support the use of RNA sequencing to discover novel cancer translocations.
Chromosomal rearrangements account for all erythroblast transformation-specific (ETS) family member gene fusions that have been reported in prostate cancer and have clinical, diagnostic, and prognostic implications. Androgen-regulated genes account for the majority of the 5' genomic regulatory promoter elements fused with ETS genes. TMPRSS2-ERG, TMPRSS2-ETV1, and SLC45A3-ERG rearrangements account for roughly 90% of ETS fusion prostate cancer. ELK4, another ETS family member, is androgen regulated, involved in promoting cell growth, and highly expressed in a subset of prostate cancer, yet the mechanism of ELK4 overexpression is unknown. In this study, we identified a novel ETS family fusion transcript, SLC45A3-ELK4, and found it to be expressed in both benign prostate tissue and prostate cancer. We found high levels of SLC45A3-ELK4 mRNA restricted to a subset of prostate cancer samples. SLC45A3-ELK4 transcript can be detected at high levels in urine samples from men at risk for prostate cancer. Characterization of the fusion mRNA revealed a major variant in which SLC45A3 exon 1 is fused to ELK4 exon 2. Based on quantitative PCR analyses of DNA, unlike other ETS fusions described in prostate cancer, the expression of SLC45A3-ELK4 mRNA is not exclusive to cases harboring a chromosomal rearrangement. Treatment of LNCaP cancer cells with a synthetic androgen (R1881) revealed that SLC45A3-ELK4, and not endogenous ELK4, mRNA expression is androgen regulated. Altogether, our findings show that SLC45A3-ELK4 mRNA expression is heterogeneous, highly induced in a subset of prostate cancers, androgen regulated, and most commonly occurs through a mechanism other than chromosomal rearrangement (e.g., trans-splicing).
van Dekken H, Tilanus HW, Hop WC, et al.Array comparative genomic hybridization, expression array, and protein analysis of critical regions on chromosome arms 1q, 7q, and 8p in adenocarcinomas of the gastroesophageal junction.
Cancer Genet Cytogenet. 2009; 189(1):37-42 [PubMed
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Survival rates of adenocarcinomas of the gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) are low, because these tumors are generally in an advanced stage by the time they are detected. Chromosomal regions 1q32, 7q21, and 8p22 display critical alterations in GEJ cancers; however, the genes underlying alterations in these genomic areas are largely unknown. To delineate overexpressed genes, we performed array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) and mRNA expression analysis of 15 GEJ adenocarcinoma samples using a fine-tiling cDNA array covering chromosome segments 1q31.3~q41 (193.9-215.8 Mb: 21.9 Mb), 7q11.23~q22.1 (72.3-103.0 Mb: 30.7 Mb), and 8p23.1~p21.3 (11.1-20.7 Mb: 9.6 Mb). Based on a mRNA overexpression criterion, 11 genes were selected: ELF3 and SLC45A3 on 1q; CLDN12, CDK6, SMURF1, ARPC1B, ZKSCAN1, MCM7, and COPS6 on 7q; and FDFT1 and CTSB on 8p. The protein expression levels were subsequently determined by immunohistochemical analysis of the cancer samples. There was a significant correlation between genomic amplification, mRNA, and protein expression or overexpression for CDK6, a cell cycle regulator on 7q21.2 (92.1 Mb; P<0.01); other genes showed less stringent associations. In conclusion, using a straightforward approach we constructed a targeted gene profile for GEJ adenocarcinomas.
Recurrent gene fusions, typically associated with haematological malignancies and rare bone and soft-tissue tumours, have recently been described in common solid tumours. Here we use an integrative analysis of high-throughput long- and short-read transcriptome sequencing of cancer cells to discover novel gene fusions. As a proof of concept, we successfully used integrative transcriptome sequencing to 're-discover' the BCR-ABL1 (ref. 10) gene fusion in a chronic myelogenous leukaemia cell line and the TMPRSS2-ERG gene fusion in a prostate cancer cell line and tissues. Additionally, we nominated, and experimentally validated, novel gene fusions resulting in chimaeric transcripts in cancer cell lines and tumours. Taken together, this study establishes a robust pipeline for the discovery of novel gene chimaeras using high-throughput sequencing, opening up an important class of cancer-related mutations for comprehensive characterization.