Publications by authors named "Chen Shochat"

18 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Lrp5 Mutant and Crispant Zebrafish Faithfully Model Human Osteoporosis, Establishing the Zebrafish as a Platform for CRISPR-Based Functional Screening of Osteoporosis Candidate Genes.

J Bone Miner Res 2021 May 6. Epub 2021 May 6.

Center for Medical Genetics Ghent, Department of Biomolecular Medicine, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium.

Genomewide association studies (GWAS) have improved our understanding of the genetic architecture of common complex diseases such as osteoporosis. Nevertheless, to attribute functional skeletal contributions of candidate genes to osteoporosis-related traits, there is a need for efficient and cost-effective in vivo functional testing. This can be achieved through CRISPR-based reverse genetic screens, where phenotyping is traditionally performed in stable germline knockout (KO) mutants. Recently it was shown that first-generation (F0) mosaic mutant zebrafish (so-called crispants) recapitulate the phenotype of germline KOs. To demonstrate feasibility of functional validation of osteoporosis candidate genes through crispant screening, we compared a crispant to a stable KO zebrafish model for the lrp5 gene. In humans, recessive loss-of-function mutations in LRP5, a co-receptor in the Wnt signaling pathway, cause osteoporosis-pseudoglioma syndrome. In addition, several GWAS studies identified LRP5 as a major risk locus for osteoporosis-related phenotypes. In this study, we showed that early stage lrp5 KO larvae display decreased notochord mineralization and malformations of the head cartilage. Quantitative micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) scanning and mass-spectrometry element analysis of the adult skeleton revealed decreased vertebral bone volume and bone mineralization, hallmark features of osteoporosis. Furthermore, regenerating fin tissue displayed reduced Wnt signaling activity in lrp5 KO adults. We next compared lrp5 mutants with crispants. Next-generation sequencing analysis of adult crispant tissue revealed a mean out-of-frame mutation rate of 76%, resulting in strongly reduced levels of Lrp5 protein. These crispants generally showed a milder but nonetheless highly comparable skeletal phenotype and a similarly reduced Wnt pathway response compared with lrp5 KO mutants. In conclusion, we show through faithful modeling of LRP5-related primary osteoporosis that crispant screening in zebrafish is a promising approach for rapid functional screening of osteoporosis candidate genes. © 2021 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research. © 2021 The Authors. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbmr.4327DOI Listing
May 2021

Deletion of SREBF1, a Functional Bone-Muscle Pleiotropic Gene, Alters Bone Density and Lipid Signaling in Zebrafish.

Endocrinology 2021 01;162(1)

Bone-Muscle Research Center, College of Nursing & Health Innovation, University of Texas at Arlington-UTA, Arlington, Texas.

Through a genome-wide analysis of bone mineral density (BMD) and muscle mass, identification of a signaling pattern on 17p11.2 recognized the presence of sterol regulatory element-binding factor 1 (SREBF1), a gene responsible for the regulation of lipid homeostasis. In conjunction with lipid-based metabolic functions, SREBF1 also codes for the protein, SREBP-1, a transcription factor known for its role in adipocyte differentiation. We conducted a quantitative correlational study. We established a zebrafish (ZF) SREBF1 knockout (KO) model and used a targeted customized lipidomics approach to analyze the extent of SREBF1 capabilities. For lipidomics profiling, we isolated the dorsal muscles of wild type (WT) and KO fishes, and we performed liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry screening assays of these samples. In our analysis, we profiled 48 lipid mediators (LMs) derived from various essential polyunsaturated fatty acids to determine potential targets regulated by SREBF1, and we found that the levels of 11,12 epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (11,12-EET) were negatively associated with the number of SREBF1 alleles (P = 0.006 for a linear model). We also compared gene expression between KO and WT ZF by genome-wide RNA-sequencing. Significantly enriched pathways included fatty acid elongation, linoleic acid metabolism, arachidonic acid metabolism, adipocytokine signaling, and DNA replication. We discovered trends indicating that BMD in adult fish was significantly lower in the KO than in the WT population (P < 0.03). These studies reinforce the importance of lipidomics investigation by detailing how the KO of SREBF1 affects both BMD and lipid-signaling mediators, thus confirming the importance of SREBF1 for musculoskeletal homeostasis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/endocr/bqaa189DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7745669PMC
January 2021

Evaluation of the long-term skeletal effect induced by teratogen 5-aza-2'deoxycytidine on offspring of high (C3H/HeJ) and low (C57BL/6J) bone mass phenotype mice.

Bone Rep 2018 Jun 29;8:239-243. Epub 2018 May 29.

The Musculoskeletal Genetics Laboratory, Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, Bar Ilan University, Safed, Israel.

The long term skeletal effects of antenatal exposure to teratogen 5-deoxy-2'-cytidine (5-AZA) were studied using two inbred strains, C3H/HeJ (C3H, with inherently stronger bones) and C57Bl/6J (C57, with weaker bones). We previously reported that exposure to 5-AZA resulted in loss of bone quality in 3- and 6-mo-old C3H offspring. In this study, we further examined whether the long-term effects of an acute teratogenic exposure are still evident in older mice. Bone phenotypes of 12 mo-old mice exposed to a single injection of 5-AZA on day 10 of their mother's pregnancy were evaluated by micro-computed tomography and compared to the untreated controls. The main observation of this study is that 5-AZA-induced loss of bone length was registered in 12-mo-old C57 and C3H males. As expected, we did not find differences in the 3rd lumbar vertebra since exposure to 5-AZA was shown to affect the limb buds but not the axial skeleton. Trajectory of changes in bone phenotypes from ages 3 mo through 6 mo to 12 mo was also compared; 5-AZA-exposed C57 males had consistently lower femoral length and trabecular BMD than age-matched controls. In summary, by characterizing teratogen-exposed C57 and C3H mice, we further confirmed that the adaptive response to antenatal insults continue into mid-life of the mice as well as there is a sex-specificity of these responses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bonr.2018.05.005DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6020399PMC
June 2018

Targeting oncogenic interleukin-7 receptor signalling with N-acetylcysteine in T cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.

Br J Haematol 2015 Jan 26;168(2):230-8. Epub 2014 Sep 26.

Department of Pediatric Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Haematology, UCL Cancer Institute, University College London, London, UK.

Activating mutations of the interleukin-7 receptor (IL7R) occur in approximately 10% of patients with T cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (T-ALL). Most mutations generate a cysteine at the transmembrane domain leading to receptor homodimerization through disulfide bond formation and ligand-independent activation of STAT5. We hypothesized that the reducing agent N-acetylcysteine (NAC), a well-tolerated drug used widely in clinical practice to treat acetaminophen overdose, would reduce disulfide bond formation, and inhibit mutant IL7R-mediated oncogenic signalling. We found that treatment with NAC disrupted IL7R homodimerization in IL7R-mutant DND-41 cells as assessed by non-reducing Western blot, as well as in a luciferase complementation assay. NAC led to STAT5 dephosphorylation and cell apoptosis at clinically achievable concentrations in DND-41 cells, and Ba/F3 cells transformed by an IL7R-mutant construct containing a cysteine insertion. The apoptotic effects of NAC could be rescued in part by a constitutively active allele of STAT5. Despite using doses lower than those tolerated in humans, NAC treatment significantly inhibited the progression of human DND-41 cells engrafted in immunodeficient mice. Thus, targeting leukaemogenic IL7R homodimerization with NAC offers a potentially effective and feasible therapeutic strategy that warrants testing in patients with T-ALL.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjh.13115DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4303513PMC
January 2015

Novel activating mutations lacking cysteine in type I cytokine receptors in acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

Blood 2014 Jul 1;124(1):106-10. Epub 2014 May 1.

Childhood Leukemia Research Institute, Edmond and Lily Safra Children Hospital, Sheba Medical Center, Ramat Gan, Israel; Human Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel;

Gain-of-function somatic mutations introducing cysteines to either the extracellular or to the transmembrane domain (TMD) in interleukin-7 receptor α (IL7R) or cytokine receptor-like factor 2 (CRLF2) have been described in acute lymphoblastic leukemias. Here we report noncysteine in-frame mutations in IL7R and CRLF2 located in a region of the TMD closer to the cytosolic domain. Biochemical and functional assays showed that these are activating mutations conferring cytokine-independent growth of progenitor lymphoid cells in vitro and are transforming in vivo. Protein fragment complementation assays suggest that despite the absence of cysteines, the mechanism of activation is through ligand-independent dimerization. Mutagenesis experiments and ConSurf calculations suggest that the mutations stabilize the homodimeric conformation, positioning the cytosolic kinases in predefined orientation to each other, thereby inducing spontaneous receptor activation independently of external signals. Hence, type I cytokine receptors may be activated in leukemia through 2 types of transmembrane somatic dimerizing mutations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/blood-2013-10-529685DOI Listing
July 2014

Towards precision medicine in childhood leukemia--insights from mutationally activated cytokine receptor pathways in acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

Cancer Lett 2014 Sep 22;352(1):15-20. Epub 2014 Feb 22.

Childhood Leukemia Research Section, Department of Pediatric Hemato-Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Ramat Gan, Israel; Department of Molecular Human Genetics and Biochemistry, Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Israel; Division of Biological Sciences and Department of Medicine Stem Cell Program, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, USA.

The successful therapy of childhood leukemia has been characterized by careful personalized adaptation of therapy by risk stratification. Yet almost all drugs are relatively non-specific. To achieve greater precision in therapy, druggable targets and specific targeting drugs are necessary. Here we review the recent discoveries of cytokine receptors and their signaling components in high risk leukemias and the potential approaches to target them.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.canlet.2014.02.009DOI Listing
September 2014

Interleukin 7 and thymic stromal lymphopoietin: from immunity to leukemia.

Cell Mol Life Sci 2014 Feb 27;71(3):365-78. Epub 2013 Apr 27.

Cancer Research Center, Sheba Medical Center, Edmond and Lily Safra Children's Hospital, Tel Hashomer, 52621, Ramat Gan, Israel.

Cancer is often caused by deregulation of normal developmental processes. Here, we review recent research on the aberrant activation of two hematopoietic cytokine receptors in acute lymphoid leukemias. Somatic events in the genes for thymic stromal lymphopoietin and Interleukin 7 receptors as well as in their downstream JAK kinases result in constitutive ligand-independent activation of survival and proliferation in B and T lymphoid precursors. Drugs targeting these receptors or the signaling pathways might provide effective therapies of these leukemias.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00018-013-1337-xDOI Listing
February 2014

Gain-of-function mutations in interleukin-7 receptor-α (IL7R) in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemias.

J Exp Med 2011 May 2;208(5):901-8. Epub 2011 May 2.

Childhood Leukemia Research Institute and Department of Pediatric Hemato-Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Ramat Gan 52621, Israel.

Interleukin-7 receptor α (IL7R) is required for normal lymphoid development. Loss-of-function mutations in this gene cause autosomal recessive severe combined immune deficiency. Here, we describe somatic gain-of-function mutations in IL7R in pediatric B and T acute lymphoblastic leukemias. The mutations cause either a serine-to-cysteine substitution at amino acid 185 in the extracellular domain (4 patients) or in-frame insertions and deletions in the transmembrane domain (35 patients). In B cell precursor leukemias, the mutations were associated with the aberrant expression of cytokine receptor-like factor 2 (CRLF2), and the mutant IL-7R proteins formed a functional receptor with CRLF2 for thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP). Biochemical and functional assays reveal that these IL7R mutations are activating mutations conferring cytokine-independent growth of progenitor lymphoid cells. A cysteine, included in all but three of the mutated IL-7R alleles, is essential for the constitutive activation of the receptor. This is the first demonstration of gain-of-function mutations of IL7R. Our current and recent observations of mutations in IL7R and CRLF2, respectively suggest that the addition of cysteine to the juxtamembranous domains is a general mechanism for mutational activation of type I cytokine receptors in leukemia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1084/jem.20110580DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3092356PMC
May 2011

A protocol for genetic evaluation of patients with multiple colorectal adenomas and without evidence of APC gene mutation.

Isr Med Assoc J 2010 Sep;12(9):549-53

Department of Gastroenterology, Sourasky Tel Aviv Medical Center, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Israel.

Background: Patients with multiple (< 100) colorectal adenomatous polyps are at increased risk for colorectal cancer. Genetic evaluation of those patients who test negative forAPCgene mutation is both a clinical and economic burden but is critical for counseling and surveillance. In Israel, this is confounded by the fact that national health insurance does not fully cover genetic evaluation of APC gene exon 16.

Objectives: To perform a comprehensive genetic evaluation of APC gene mutation-negative polyposis patients with the aim of developing a future evaluation protocol.

Methods: Genetic analyses were performed in 29 APC gene mutation-negative Jewish individuals with 5 to > or = 40 colonic adenomas who did not fulfill Amsterdam (clinical) criteria for Lynch syndrome. Analyses included completion of APC gene exon 16 sequencing, analysis for APC gene copy number variations (deletions or duplications), MUTYH gene sequencing, and microsatellite instability in CRC patients fulfilling "Bethesda" (laboratory investigation) criteria for Lynch syndrome.

Results: Completion of APC gene exon 16 sequencing revealed one patient with the E1317Q polymorphism. All were normal by APC multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification analysis. Pathogenic MUTYH mutations were found in three patients, all of North African origin; two additional patients had variants of unknown significance. One of six patients with Bethesda-positive criteria was MSI-High with immunohistology consistent with MLH1 mutation.

Conclusions: Based on this small but well-characterized cohort with multiple colorectal adenomas, Lynch syndrome needs to be excluded if there are compatible criteria; otherwise MUTYH sequencing is probably the first step in evaluating APC-negative patients, especially for Jews of North African descent. Completing APC exon 16 sequencing and copy number variations analysis should probably be the last evaluations.
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September 2010

Genotype/phenotype correlation in primary congenital glaucoma patients from different ethnic groups of the Israeli population.

Am J Ophthalmol 2011 Feb 18;151(2):263-71.e1. Epub 2010 Dec 18.

Department of Ophthalmology, Carmel Medical Center, Haifa, Israel.

Purpose: To investigate the roles of CYP1B1 and MYOC mutations and characterize the phenotype of primary congenital glaucoma in Israeli patients from 3 different ethnic backgrounds.

Design: Interventional case series.

Methods: This institutional study included 34 Israeli primary congenital glaucoma patients (26 families) comprising 9 Jews (9 families), 17 non-Bedouin Muslim Arabs (10 families), and 8 Druze (7 families). The patients and their relatives (n = 99) were screened for CYP1B1 and MYOC mutations.

Results: Mutations in the CYP1B1 gene were detected in 12 of 26 families (46%) with primary congenital glaucoma (5 Muslim Arab, 5 Druze, and 2 Jewish). The Jewish families had compound heterozygous mutations and digenic mutations (ie, an Ashkenazi family had mutations in the CYP1B1 gene [Arg368His, R48G, A119S, and L432V haplotypes] and an Ashkenazi-Sephardic family had a mutation on the CYP1B1 gene [1908delA, Sephardic] with a second missense mutation on the MYOC gene [R76K, Ashkenazi]). The Muslim Arabs and Druze tended to have a more severe phenotype than that of the Jews.

Conclusion: The phenotype and spectrum of the CYP1B1 and MYOC mutation roles in the clinical characteristics of primary congenital glaucoma varied according to ethnicity. The rarity of mutations in the CYP1B1 gene among Ashkenazi primary congenital glaucoma patients indicates that a different locus may be involved in the phenotype.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajo.2010.08.038DOI Listing
February 2011

Down syndrome acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a highly heterogeneous disease in which aberrant expression of CRLF2 is associated with mutated JAK2: a report from the International BFM Study Group.

Blood 2010 Feb 24;115(5):1006-17. Epub 2009 Nov 24.

Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

We report gene expression and other analyses to elucidate the molecular characteristics of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in children with Down syndrome (DS). We find that by gene expression DS-ALL is a highly heterogeneous disease not definable as a unique entity. Nevertheless, 62% (33/53) of the DS-ALL samples analyzed were characterized by high expression of the type I cytokine receptor CRLF2 caused by either immunoglobulin heavy locus ([email protected]) translocations or by interstitial deletions creating chimeric transcripts P2RY8-CRLF2. In 3 of these 33 patients, a novel activating somatic mutation, F232C in CRLF2, was identified. Consistent with our previous research, mutations in R683 of JAK2 were identified in 10 specimens (19% of the patients) and, interestingly, all 10 had high CRLF2 expression. Cytokine receptor-like factor 2 (CRLF2) and mutated Janus kinase 2 (Jak2) cooperated in conferring cytokine-independent growth to BaF3 pro-B cells. Intriguingly, the gene expression signature of DS-ALL is enriched with DNA damage and BCL6 responsive genes, suggesting the possibility of B-cell lymphocytic genomic instability. Thus, DS confers increased risk for genetically highly diverse ALLs with frequent overexpression of CRLF2, associated with activating mutations in the receptor itself or in JAK2. Our data also suggest that the majority of DS children with ALL may benefit from therapy blocking the CRLF2/JAK2 pathways.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/blood-2009-08-235408DOI Listing
February 2010

An Ashkenazi founder mutation in the MSH6 gene leading to HNPCC.

Fam Cancer 2010 Jun;9(2):141-50

Sharret Institute of Oncology, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Kyriat Hadassah, POB 12000, 91120, Jerusalem, Israel.

Mutations in DNA mismatch repair genes underlie lynch syndrome (HNPCC). Lynch syndrome resulting from mutations in MSH6 is considered to be attenuated in comparison to that caused by mutations in MLH1 and MSH2, thus more likely to be under diagnosed. In this study we report of a common mutation in the MSH6 gene in Ashkenazi Jews. Genetic counseling and diagnostic work-up for HNPCC was conducted in families who attended the high risk clinic for inherited cancer. We identified the mutation c.3984_3987dup in the MSH6 gene in 19 members of four unrelated Ashkenazi families. This mutation results in truncation of the transcript and in loss of expression of the MSH6 protein in tumors. Tumor spectrum among carriers included colon, endometrial, gastric, ovarian, urinary, and breast cancer. All but one family qualified for the Bethesda guidelines and none fulfilled the Amsterdam Criteria. Members of one family also co-inherited the c.6174delT mutation in the BRCA2 gene. The c.3984_3987dup in the MSH6 gene is a mutation leading to HNPCC among Ashkenazi Jews. This is most probably a founder mutation. In contrast to the c.1906G>C founder mutation in the MSH2 gene, tumors tend to occur later in life, and none of the families qualified for the Amsterdam criteria. c.3984_3987dup is responsible for 1/6 of the mutations identified among Ashkenazi HNPCC families in our cohort. Both mutations: c.3984_3987dup and c.1906G>C account for 61% of HNPCC Ashkenazi families in this cohort. These findings are of great importance for counseling, diagnosis, management and surveillance for Ashkenazi families with Lynch syndrome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10689-009-9298-9DOI Listing
June 2010

Homozygosity of MSH2 c.1906G-->C germline mutation is associated with childhood colon cancer, astrocytoma and signs of Neurofibromatosis type I.

Fam Cancer 2009 20;8(3):187-94. Epub 2008 Dec 20.

Schneider Children's Medical Center of Israel and Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.

Hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer is a cancer predisposition syndrome known to be caused by heterozygous germline mutations in DNA mismatch repair genes (MMR) most commonly hMLH1, hMSH2, hMSH6. Heterozygous mutations in one of these genes confer an increased risk, mainly for colon and endometrial cancer. Recently, several publications identified that biallelic mutations in the MMR genes are associated with a more severe phenotype, including childhood malignancies and signs of neurofibromatosis type I (NF1). We report on a non-consanguineous Ashkenazi Jewish family with two affected siblings with features of NF1, colon cancer and astrocytoma at age 13 and 14. Their mother developed endometrial cancer at age 54. Their father had leukoplakia of the vocal cords with a family history of pancreatic cancer. Molecular and pathology studies were done on the tumor tissue and on genomic DNA of family members. Tumor testing demonstrated a high degree of microsatellite instability (MSI analysis), expression of MLH1 and absence of expression of both MSH2 and MSH6 proteins. A biallelic c.1906G > C (p.A636P) mutation in the hMSH2 gene was detected in the blood of one affected child. Parental genetic testing showed that each parent was heterozygote for the mutation. The c.1906G > C mutation is a founder mutation in the Ashkenazi Jewish population. To our knowledge this is the first report of homozygosity for this founder mutation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10689-008-9227-3DOI Listing
January 2010

Mutations of JAK2 in acute lymphoblastic leukaemias associated with Down's syndrome.

Lancet 2008 Oct 19;372(9648):1484-92. Epub 2008 Sep 19.

Human Molecular Genetics and Pharmacogenetics Laboratory, Migal-Galilee Biotechnology Centre, Kiryat Shmona, and Tel-Hai Academic College, Israel.

Background: Children with Down's syndrome have a greatly increased risk of acute megakaryoblastic and acute lymphoblastic leukaemias. Acute megakaryoblastic leukaemia in Down's syndrome is characterised by a somatic mutation in GATA1. Constitutive activation of the JAK/STAT (Janus kinase and signal transducer and activator of transcription) pathway occurs in several haematopoietic malignant diseases. We tested the hypothesis that mutations in JAK2 might be a common molecular event in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia associated with Down's syndrome.

Methods: JAK2 DNA mutational analysis was done on diagnostic bone marrow samples obtained from 88 patients with Down's syndrome-associated acute lymphoblastic leukaemia; and 216 patients with sporadic acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, Down's syndrome-associated acute megakaryoblastic leukaemia, and essential thrombocythaemia. Functional consequences of identified mutations were studied in mouse haematopoietic progenitor cells.

Findings: Somatically acquired JAK2 mutations were identified in 16 (18%) patients with Down's syndrome-associated acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. The only patient with non-Down's syndrome-associated leukaemia but with a JAK2 mutation had an isochromosome 21q. Children with a JAK2 mutation were younger (mean [SE] age 4.5 years [0.86] vs 8.6 years [0.59], p<0.0001) at diagnosis. Five mutant alleles were identified, each affecting a highly conserved arginine residue (R683). These mutations immortalised primary mouse haematopoietic progenitor cells in vitro, and caused constitutive Jak/Stat activation and cytokine-independent growth of BaF3 cells, which was sensitive to pharmacological inhibition with JAK inhibitor I. In modelling studies of the JAK2 pseudokinase domain, R683 was situated in an exposed conserved region separated from the one implicated in myeloproliferative disorders.

Interpretation: A specific genotype-phenotype association exists between the type of somatic mutation within the JAK2 pseudokinase domain and the development of B-lymphoid or myeloid neoplasms. Somatically acquired R683 JAK2 mutations define a distinct acute lymphoblastic leukaemia subgroup that is uniquely associated with trisomy 21. JAK2 inhibitors could be useful for treatment of this leukaemia.

Funding: Israel Trade Ministry, Israel Science Ministry, Jewish National Fund UK, Sam Waxman Cancer Research Foundation, Israel Science Foundation, Israel Cancer Association, Curtis Katz, Constantiner Institute for Molecular Genetics, German-Israel Foundation, and European Commission FP6 Integrated Project EUROHEAR.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61341-0DOI Listing
October 2008

Mutation spectrum in HNPCC in the Israeli population.

Fam Cancer 2008 4;7(4):309-17. Epub 2008 Apr 4.

Sharret Institute of Oncology, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, POB 12000, Kyriat Hadassah, 91120, Jerusalem, Israel.

Hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer is caused by mutations in DNA mismatch repair genes. The mutation spectrum in the Israeli population is poorly documented except for the c.1906G>C Ashkenazi founder mutation in the hMSH2 gene. To report our experience in HNPCC screening, the mutations detected and the clinical features among a cohort of Israeli patients. Diagnostic work-up was done in a multi-step process guided by clinical and ethnic information. Tumors of suspected patients were tested for microsatellite instability and immunohistochemistry. Based on tumor analyses, we proceeded to mutation screening by DHPLC followed by sequence analysis and multiplex ligase dependent probe amplification. Ashkenazi Jews were first tested for the c.1906G>C founder mutation. Of the 240 families, 24, including Arabs and Jews from different ethnic origins, were tested positive. All tumors that lost expression of mismatch repair proteins also showed microsatellite instability. There was evidence for involvement of hMSH2 (15) hMLH1 (6) and hMSH6 (3) genes. Mutations were identified in 17/24 (71%) patients: 6 Ashkenazi families harbored the c.1906G>C mutation. Eleven other mutations (2 nonsense, 3 splice site and 6 small deletions) were detected. Three of the mutations are novel. No gross deletions or insertions were detected. This is the first report that characterizes the profile of HNPCC in a cohort of patients in Israel. Tumor testing indicated that the 3 main MMR genes are involved, and that mutation spectrum is broad.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10689-008-9191-yDOI Listing
January 2009

[A new oncogenetic service of counseling and diagnosing for hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC)].

Harefuah 2007 Jul;146(7):510-4, 576, 575

Sharret Institute of Oncology, Hadassah Hebrew University Medical Center.

Background: Hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) is an autosomal dominant cancer predisposition syndrome associated with a high risk for colorectal cancer (up to 80%), endometrial cancer (up to 60%), and increased risk for other malignancies, mostly ovarian and urinary system tumors. HNPCC is caused by a germline mutation in one of the mismatch repair (MMR) genes, mainly hMLH1, hMSH2 and hMSH6. The tumors present with microsatellite instability (MSI) associated with loss of heterozygosity of the affected gene, and with loss of expression of the gene product. Diagnosis of HNPCC involves tumor testing for MSI, immunohistochemistry staining and germ line mutation analysis of the suspected gene. Proper genetic counseling is based on the synthesis of the clinical, pathological and molecular data. Directed surveillance shows significant reduction in colon cancer incidence, cancer mortality and overall mortality among HNPCC patients.

Goal: To establish a multidisciplinary service for patients suspected of having HNPCC.

Methods: We have established a service which is based on tight collaboration between clinical departments and laboratories. The clinical work-up was conducted by a special oncogenetic clinic and the laboratory service consisted of tissue testing for MSI and immunohistochemistry, denaturing high performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC) for suspected genes, and mutation testing.

Results: The efficiency of detection of patients with HNPCC was high, completed in a multistep process. In the first year of our collaborative work, we have provided genetic counseling to over 100 families and performed suitable tests for 46 families. Among them we have identified more than 16 families with HNPCC; 4 showed absence of hMLH1, 1 showed absence of hMSH6, and 11 showed absence of hMSH2. All tumors that showed MSI also showed absence of either one of the three MMR proteins. We present the clinical, pathological and molecular features of our patients and discuss the implication of this data on future recommendations.
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July 2007

A novel BRCA-1 mutation in Arab kindred from east Jerusalem with breast and ovarian cancer.

BMC Cancer 2007 Jan 18;7:14. Epub 2007 Jan 18.

Sharett Institute of Oncology, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel.

Background: The incidence of breast cancer (BC) in Arab women is lower compared to the incidence in the Jewish population in Israel; still, it is the most common malignancy among Arab women. There is a steep rise in breast cancer incidence in the Arab population in Israel over the last 10 years that can be attributed to life style changes. But, the younger age of BC onset in Arab women compared with that of the Jewish population is suggestive of a genetic component in BC occurrence in that population.

Methods: We studied the family history of 31 women of Palestinian Arab (PA) origin affected with breast (n = 28), ovarian (n = 3) cancer. We used denaturing high performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC) to screen for mutations of BRCA1/2 in 4 women with a personal and family history highly suggestive of genetic predisposition.

Results: A novel BRCA1 mutation, E1373X in exon 12, was found in a patient affected with ovarian cancer. Four of her family members, 3 BC patients and a healthy individual were consequently also found to carry this mutation. Of the other 27 patients, which were screened for this specific mutation none was found to carry it.

Conclusion: We found a novel BRCA1 mutation in a family of PA origin with a history highly compatible with BRCA1 phenotype. This mutation was not found in additional 30 PA women affected with BC or OC. Therefore full BRCA1/2 screening should be offered to patients with characteristic family history. The significance of the novel BRCA1 mutation we identified should be studied in larger population. However, it is likely that the E1373X mutation is not a founder frequent mutation in the PA population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2407-7-14DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1784098PMC
January 2007

The association of common SNPs and haplotypes in the CETP and MDR1 genes with lipids response to fluvastatin in familial hypercholesterolemia.

Atherosclerosis 2006 Mar 5;185(1):97-107. Epub 2005 Jul 5.

The Laboratory for Molecular Genetics and Pharmacogenetics, Migal-Galilee Technology Center, Kiryat-Shmona, Israel.

Objective: To examine whether genetic polymorphisms in the cholesteryl-ester transfer protein (CETP) and the P-glycoprotein drug transporter (MDR1), are associated with variable lipid response to fluvastatin.

Methods: Lipid levels were determined in a compliance-monitored clinical study at baseline and following 20 weeks of treatment with 40 mg dose of fluvastatin in 76 FH patients. CETP and MDR1 SNP genotyping was performed and linear regression was used to examine the associations between common SNPs and haplotypes and lipid response.

Results: Treatment with 40 mg of fluvastatin resulted in mean low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) reduction of 21.5%; mean triglyceride (TG) reduction of 8.3%; and a mean high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) increase of 13.4%. Five tagging SNPs in both genes were used to reconstruct five and six haplotypes accounting for 71.4% and 90.2% of the observed haplotypes in the CETP and MDR1 genes, respectively. CETP-H13 and MDR1-h4 were associated with an increase in LDL-C response. CETP-H5 was significantly associated with decreased TG and HDL-C response, whereas MDR1-h10 was associated with decreased TG response. A multivariate regression model indicated an independent additive effect of CETP-H5 and MDR1-h10 on the level of TG response.

Conclusions: CETP and MDR1 have independent effects on lipid changes following fluvastatin treatment. The results of this study may lead to an improved understanding of the genetic determinants of lipids response to treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2005.05.025DOI Listing
March 2006