Publications by authors named "Drew Ellershaw"

4 Publications

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Cell-Free DNA in Pediatric Solid Organ Transplantation Using a New Detection Method of Separating Donor-Derived from Recipient Cell-Free DNA.

Clin Chem 2020 Oct;66(10):1300-1309

Department of Paediatric Nephrology, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK.

Background: The use of cell-free DNA (cfDNA) as a noninvasive biomarker to detect allograft damage is expanding rapidly. However, quantifying the low fraction of donor-derived cfDNA (ddcfDNA) is challenging and requires a highly sensitive technique. ddcfDNA detection through unique donor single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) is a recent new approach, however there are limited data in pediatric solid organ transplant (SOT) recipients.

Methods: We developed an assay using a combination of 61 SNPs to quantify the ddcfDNA accurately using a custom R script to model for both the patient and donor genotypes requiring only a single sample from the allograft recipient. Performance of the assay was validated using genomic DNA (gDNA), cfDNA and donor samples where available.

Results: The R "genotype-free" method gave results comparable to when using the known donor genotype. applicable to both related and unrelated pairs and can reliably measure ddcfDNA (limit of blank, below 0.12%; limit of detection, above 0.25%; limit of quantification 0.5% resulting in 84% accuracy). 159 pediatric SOT recipients (kidney, heart, and lung) were tested without the need for donor genotyping. Serial sampling was obtained from 82 patients.

Conclusion: We have developed and validated a new assay to measure the fraction of ddcfDNA in the plasma of pediatric SOT recipients. Our method can be applicable in any donor-recipient pair without the need for donor genotyping and can provide results in 48 h at a low cost. Additional prospective studies are required to demonstrate its clinical validity in a large cohort of pediatric SOT recipients.
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October 2020

Trisomy 21 mid-trimester amniotic fluid induced pluripotent stem cells maintain genetic signatures during reprogramming: implications for disease modeling and cryobanking.

Cell Reprogram 2014 Oct 27;16(5):331-44. Epub 2014 Aug 27.

1 Surgery Unit, Institute of Child Health, University College London , London, WC1N 1EH, United Kingdom .

Trisomy 21 is the most common chromosomal abnormality and is associated primarily with cardiovascular, hematological, and neurological complications. A robust patient-derived cellular model is necessary to investigate the pathophysiology of the syndrome because current animal models are limited and access to tissues from affected individuals is ethically challenging. We aimed to derive induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from trisomy 21 human mid-trimester amniotic fluid stem cells (AFSCs) and describe their hematopoietic and neurological characteristics. Human AFSCs collected from women undergoing prenatal diagnosis were selected for c-KIT(+) and transduced with a Cre-lox-inducible polycistronic lentiviral vector encoding SOX2, OCT4, KLF-4, and c-MYC (50,000 cells at a multiplicity of infection (MOI) 1-5 for 72 h). The embryonic stem cell (ESC)-like properties of the AFSC-derived iPSCs were established in vitro by embryoid body formation and in vivo by teratoma formation in RAG2(-/-), γ-chain(-/-), C2(-/-) immunodeficient mice. Reprogrammed cells retained their cytogenetic signatures and differentiated into specialized hematopoietic and neural precursors detected by morphological assessment, immunostaining, and RT-PCR. Additionally, the iPSCs expressed all pluripotency markers upon multiple rounds of freeze-thawing. These findings are important in establishing a patient-specific cellular platform of trisomy 21 to study the pathophysiology of the aneuploidy and for future drug discovery.
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October 2014