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  • 1
    In: Neuro-Oncology, 2018, Vol. 20(suppl2), pp.i182-i182
    Description: Precise diagnosis and robust detection of actionable alterations is required for individualized treatments. The Pediatric Targeted Therapy (PTT) 2.0 program aims at improvement of diagnostic accuracy and detection of targetable alterations by extended molecular diagnostics. The impact of these analyses on clinical management is being evaluated. Pediatric patients with relapsed or progressive tumors after treatment according to standard protocols are included, independent of the histological diagnosis. Formalin fixed paraffin embedded material and a blood sample for germline correction are requested. The methods employed are DNA methylation array, customized targeted gene panel sequencing (130 genes), RNA and Sanger sequencing in selected cases, and immunohistochemistry (IHC) of selected markers. A questionnaire-based follow-up is used to determine the clinical impact of the analysis. We have included n=111 cases from 22.02.2017.-31.12.2017, analysis was completed for n=83 cases (75%) at the time of abstract submission. The most common entities were brain tumors (n=56/83, 67%). DNA methylation array alone allowed diagnostic classification in n=45/83 cases (54.2%) and n=34/56 brain tumor cases (60,7%), respectively. Actionable targets as detected by copy number calculation, gene panel sequencing, RNA sequencing and IHC were found in n=47/83 cases (56.6%). Pathogenic germline alterations with clinical relevance were identified in n=7/83 cases (8.4%) and were confirmed by Sanger sequencing. Follow-up analyses are ongoing. In conclusion, combination of next-generation diagnostics such as methylation arrays and targeted sequencing in addition to selected IHC markers added robust information concerning diagnosis and targetable alterations. The impact on clinical decision-making and on outcome is currently being evaluated.
    Keywords: Medicine;
    ISSN: 1522-8517
    E-ISSN: 1523-5866
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  • 2
    In: Neuro-Oncology, 2018, Vol. 20(suppl2), pp.i181-i181
    Description: Children can be affected by a large variety of CNS tumor entities with very divergent outcomes, some of which are exceedingly rare. DNA methylation analysis is a powerful tool to distinguish biologically distinct CNS tumor classes within and across histological entities. The Molecular Neuropathology 2.0 study aims to integrate genome wide (epi-)genetic diagnostics with reference neuropathological assessment for all newly-diagnosed pediatric CNS tumors in Germany. In the first 2 ½ years, 675 patients with sufficient tissue were enrolled from 55 centers. For 〉95% of patients, a diagnosis according to the WHO classification was assigned by reference neuropathology. Using 10 FFPE sections as input, a DNA methylation-based molecular diagnosis was established in 95% of cases, of which 84% were assigned to a distinct CNS tumor methylation class. The remaining 16% did not match any of 82 currently established classes, with evidence for novel rare entities. Targeted gene panel sequencing of 〉130 genes performed for 88% of patients with matched blood samples indicated diagnostically, prognostically, or therapeutically relevant somatic alterations in 47%. Germline DNA sequencing data indicated potential predisposition syndromes in ~10% of patients. Discrepant results by neuropathological and molecular classification (~20%) were discussed in a weekly multi-disciplinary tumor board including reference neuroradiological evaluation. Clinical follow-up data for all patients is being collected by the HIT study centers. This ongoing study adds a valuable layer of information to clinical neuropathological diagnostics in Germany and will provide insight into CNS tumors with divergent neuropathological and molecular classification with potential implications for future patient management.
    Keywords: Medicine;
    ISSN: 1522-8517
    E-ISSN: 1523-5866
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  • 3
  • 4
    Language: English
    In: Cancer Letters, 28 July 2013, Vol.335(2), pp.431-440
    Description: The PEA-15/PED (phosphoprotein enriched in astrocytes 15 kD/phosphoprotein enriched in diabetes) protein is a multifunctional phosphoprotein involved in various signaling pathways which determine survival, proliferation, and migration of cancer cells. Here, we investigated the expression and cellular functions of PEA-15 in colorectal carcinoma (CRC). PEA-15 is expressed in the majority of human CRC, predominantly in well differentiated tumor areas. A tissue microarray analysis of 1262 human CRC specimens from the DACHS study showed that PEA-15 expression is significantly associated with a low pT stadium as defined by limited invasion into the bowel wall. Moreover, patients with PEA-15-positive CRC exhibited a significantly longer tumor-specific survival time. To investigate the functional relevance of PEA-15 expression on a cellular level, we over-expressed PEA-15 in several CRC cell lines. Increased expression of PEA-15 resulted in a strong inhibition of clonogenicity, proliferation, and invasiveness of CRC cells. These effects were associated with a PEA-15-dependent down-regulation of integrin αvβ5 as well as with elevated levels of the phosphorylated MAP kinase ERK1/2. Moreover, expression of PEA-15 resulted in significant protection from cell death induced by cytotoxic drugs (5-FU, cisplatin), by the death ligand TRAIL, or by serum withdrawal. In conclusion, the PEA-15 protein regulates invasiveness, proliferation, and apoptosis resistance in CRC cells. PEA-15 might play an important role in chemoresistance, progression and metastasis in CRC.
    Keywords: Apoptosis ; Pea-15/Ped ; Colorectal Carcinoma ; Proliferation ; Invasiveness ; Medicine
    ISSN: 0304-3835
    E-ISSN: 1872-7980
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  • 5
    In: Klinische Pädiatrie, 2018, Vol.230(06)
    In: Klinische Pädiatrie, 2018, Vol.230(06), pp.305-313
    Description: Central nervous system (CNS) tumors account for the highest mortality among pediatric malignancies. Accurate diagnosis is essential for optimal clinical management. The increasing use of molecular diagnostics has opened up novel possibilities for more precise classification of CNS tumors. We here report a single-institutional collection of pediatric CNS tumor cases that underwent a refinement or a change of diagnosis after completion of molecular analysis that affected clinical decision-making including the application of molecularly informed targeted therapies. 13 pediatric CNS tumors were analyzed by conventional histology, immunohistochemistry, and molecular diagnostics including DNA methylation profiling in 12 cases, DNA sequencing in 8 cases and RNA sequencing in 3 cases. 3 tumors had a refinement of diagnosis upon molecular testing, and 6 tumors underwent a change of diagnosis. Targeted therapy was initiated in 5 cases. An underlying cancer predisposition syndrome was detected in 5 cases. Although this case series, retrospective and not population based, has its limitations, insight can be gained regarding precision of diagnosis and clinical management of the patients in selected cases. Accuracy of diagnosis was improved in the cases presented here by the addition of molecular diagnostics, impacting clinical management of affected patients, both in the first-line as well as in the follow-up setting. This additional information may support the clinical decision making in the treatment of challenging pediatric CNS tumors. Prospective testing of the clinical value of molecular diagnostics is currently underway.
    Keywords: Brain tumor ; Molecular diagnostics ; Targeted therapy ; Cancer predisposition syndromes
    ISSN: 0300-8630
    E-ISSN: 1439-3824
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Virus Genes, 1999, Vol.18(3), pp.211-220
    Description: A consensus primer PCR approach was used to (i) investigate the presence of herpesviruses in wild and zoo equids (zebra, wild ass, tapir) and to (ii) study the genetic relationship of the herpesvirus of pigeons (columbid herpesvirus 1) to other herpesvirus species. The PCR assay, based on degenerate primers targeting highly conserved regions of the DNA polymerase gene of herpesviruses, was modified by using a mixture of degenerate and deoxyinosine-substituted primers. The applicability of the modification was validated by amplification of published DNA polymerase genes of 16 herpesvirus species and of the previously uncharacterized DNA polymerase genes of equine herpesvirus 3 (EHV-3) and equine herpesvirus 5 (EHV-5). The modified assay was then used for partial amplification of the polymerase of columbid herpesvirus 1 which is presently classified as a β-herpesvirus based on biological criteria. Sequence analysis of amplicons obtained from four different viral strains revealed a close relationship of columbid herpesvirus 1 to members of the subfamily Alphaherpesvirinae, especially to Marek’s disease herpesvirus. This was confirmed by characterization of additional 1.6 kb of the columbid herpesvirus 1 polymerase. Consensus PCR analysis of blood samples from zebras, a wild ass and a tapir revealed amplicons showing high percentages (〉50%) of sequence identity to DNA polymerases of γ-herpesviruses. In particular, the zebra and the wild ass sequence were closely related to each other and to the polymerases of the equine γ-herpesviruses EHV-2 and EHV-5 with sequence identities of 〉80%. This is a first indication that novel γ-herpesviruses are present in wild and zoo equids.
    Keywords: herpesviridae ; DNA polymerase ; consensus primer ; deoxyinosine ; equine herpesviruses ; columbid herpesvirus 1
    ISSN: 0920-8569
    E-ISSN: 1572-994X
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  • 7
    Language: English
    In: Gastroenterology, August 2007, Vol.133(2), pp.587-598
    Description: The constant renewal of enterocytes along the crypt–villus axis (CVA) of human small intestine is due to cell-inherent changes resulting in the apoptotic cell death of senescent enterocytes. The aim of the present study was to examine underlying molecular mechanisms of the cell death at the villus tip. Characterization of human acyl-coenzyme A (CoA) synthetase 5 (ACSL5) was performed by cloning, recombinant protein expression, biochemical approaches, and several functional and in situ analyses. Our data show that different amounts of acyl-CoA synthetase 5-full length (ACSL5-fl) and a so far unknown splice variant lacking exon 20 (ACSL5-Δ20) are found in human enterocytes. In contrast with the splice variant ACSL5-Δ20, recombinant and purified ACSL5-fl protein is active at a highly alkaline pH. Over expression of ACSL5-fl protein is associated with a decrease of the anti-apoptotic FLIP protein in a ceramide-dependent manner and an increased cell-surface expression of the death receptor TRAIL-R1. Expression analyses revealed that the ACSL5-fl/ACSL5-Δ20 ratio increases along the CVA, thereby sensitizing ACSL5-fl–dominated cells at the villus tip to the death ligand TRAIL, which is corroborated by functional studies with human small intestinal mucosal samples and an immortalized human small intestinal cell line. Our results suggest an ACSL5-dependent regulatory mechanism that contributes to the cellular renewal along the CVA in human small intestine. Deregulation of the ACSL5-fl/ACSL5-Δ20 homeostasis in the maturation and shedding of cells along the CVA might also be of relevance for the development of intestinal neoplasia.
    Keywords: Medicine
    ISSN: 0016-5085
    E-ISSN: 1528-0012
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  • 8
    Language: English
    In: Cancer Biology & Therapy, 01 December 2008, Vol.7(12), pp.1982-1990
    Description: Resistance to apoptosis is one reason for the poor response of malignant brain tumors to therapy. The PPARγ-modulating drug Troglitazone down-regulates the anti-apoptotic FLIP protein and sensitizes glioblastoma cells to apoptosis induced by the death ligand TRAIL. To investigate the molecular...
    Keywords: Medicine
    ISSN: 1538-4047
    E-ISSN: 1555-8576
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Molecular cancer research : MCR, December 2007, Vol.5(12), pp.1232-40
    Description: Glioblastomas, the most malignant of all brain tumors, are characterized by cellular resistance to apoptosis and a highly invasive growth pattern. These factors contribute to the poor response of glioblastomas to radiochemotherapy and prevent their complete neurosurgical resection. However, the driving force behind the distinct motility of glioma cells is only partly understood. Here, we report that in the absence of cellular stress and proapoptotic stimuli, human glioblastoma cells exhibit a constitutive activation of caspases in vivo and in vitro. The inhibition of caspases by various peptide inhibitors decreases the migration of cells in scrape motility assays and the invasiveness of cells in spheroid assays. Similarly, specific small interfering RNA- or antisense-mediated down-regulation of caspase-3 and caspase-8 results in an inhibition of the migratory potential of glioma cells. The constitutive caspase-dependent motility of glioblastoma cells is independent of CD95 activation and it is not mediated by mitogen-activated protein/extracellular signal-regulated kinase kinase signaling. The basal caspase activity is accompanied by a constant cleavage of the motility-associated gelsolin protein, which may contribute to the caspase-mediated promotion of migration and invasiveness in glioblastoma cells. Our results suggest that the administration of low doses of caspase inhibitors that block glioma cell motility without affecting the execution of apoptotic cell death may be exploited as a novel strategy for the treatment of glioblastomas.
    Keywords: Brain Neoplasms -- Enzymology ; Caspase 3 -- Metabolism ; Glioblastoma -- Enzymology
    ISSN: 1541-7786
    E-ISSN: 15573125
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  • 10
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