Gene Summary

Gene:HLA-DRB1; major histocompatibility complex, class II, DR beta 1
Aliases: SS1, DRB1, DRw10, HLA-DRB, HLA-DR1B
Summary:HLA-DRB1 belongs to the HLA class II beta chain paralogs. The class II molecule is a heterodimer consisting of an alpha (DRA) and a beta chain (DRB), both anchored in the membrane. It plays a central role in the immune system by presenting peptides derived from extracellular proteins. Class II molecules are expressed in antigen presenting cells (APC: B lymphocytes, dendritic cells, macrophages). The beta chain is approximately 26-28 kDa. It is encoded by 6 exons. Exon one encodes the leader peptide; exons 2 and 3 encode the two extracellular domains; exon 4 encodes the transmembrane domain; and exon 5 encodes the cytoplasmic tail. Within the DR molecule the beta chain contains all the polymorphisms specifying the peptide binding specificities. Hundreds of DRB1 alleles have been described and typing for these polymorphisms is routinely done for bone marrow and kidney transplantation. DRB1 is expressed at a level five times higher than its paralogs DRB3, DRB4 and DRB5. DRB1 is present in all individuals. Allelic variants of DRB1 are linked with either none or one of the genes DRB3, DRB4 and DRB5. There are 4 related pseudogenes: DRB2, DRB6, DRB7, DRB8 and DRB9. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:major histocompatibility complex, class II, DR beta 1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 11 August, 2015


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

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 11 August 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 11 August, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Latest Publications: HLA-DRB1 (cancer-related)

Zhang S, Lee DS, Morrissey R, et al.
Early or late antibiotic intervention prevents Helicobacter pylori-induced gastric cancer in a mouse model.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 359(2):345-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
H. pylori infection causes gastritis, peptic ulcers and gastric cancer. Eradicating H. pylori prevents ulcers, but to what extent this prevents cancer remains unknown, especially if given after intestinal metaplasia has developed. H. pylori infected wild-type (WT) mice do not develop cancer, but mice lacking the tumor suppressor p27 do so, thus providing an experimental model of H. pylori-induced cancer. We infected p27-deficient mice with H. pylori strain SS1 at 6-8 weeks of age. Persistently H. pylori-infected WT C57BL/6 mice served as controls. Mice in the eradication arms received antimicrobial therapy (omeprazole, metronidazole and clarithromycin) either "early" (at 15 weeks post infection, WPI) or "late" at 45 WPI. At 70 WPI, mice were euthanized for H. pylori determination, histopathology and cytokine/chemokine expression. Persistently infected mice developed premalignant lesions including high-grade dysplasia, whereas those given antibiotics did not. Histologic activity scores in the eradication groups were similar to each other, and were significantly decreased compared with controls for inflammation, epithelial defects, hyperplasia, metaplasia, atrophy and dysplasia. IP-10 and MIG levels in groups that received antibiotics were significantly lower than controls. There were no significant differences in expression of IFN-γ, TNF-α, IL-1β, RANTES, MCP-1, MIP-1α or MIP-1β among the three groups. Thus, H. pylori eradication given either early or late after infection significantly attenuated gastric inflammation, gastric atrophy, hyperplasia, and dysplasia in the p27-deficient mice model of H. pylori-induced gastric cancer, irrespective of the timing of antibiotic administration. This was associated with reduced expression of IP-10 and MIG.

Katsuhara A, Fujiki F, Aoyama N, et al.
Transduction of a novel HLA-DRB1*04:05-restricted, WT1-specific TCR gene into human CD4+ T cells confers killing activity against human leukemia cells.
Anticancer Res. 2015; 35(3):1251-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIM: Wilms' tumor gene 1 (WT1) product is a pan-tumor-associated antigen. We previously identified WT1 protein-derived promiscuous helper peptide, WT1332. Therefore, isolation and characterization of the WT1332-specific T-cell receptors (TCRs) are useful to develop broadly applicable TCR gene-based adoptive immunotherapy.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A novel HLA-DRB1*04:05-restricted WT1332-specific TCR gene was cloned and transduced into human CD4+ T-cells by using a lentiviral vector.
RESULTS: The WT1332-specific TCR-transduced CD4+ T-cells showed strong proliferation and Th1-cytokine production in an HLA-DRB1*04:05-restricted, WT1332-specific manner. Furthermore, the WT1332-specific TCR-transduced CD4+ T-cells could lyse HLA-DRB1*04:05-positive, WT1-expressing leukemia cells in vitro.
CONCLUSION: The novel TCR gene cloned here should be a promising tool to develop adoptive immunotherapy of WT1332-specific TCR-transduced CD4+ T-cells for the treatment of WT1-expressing cancer, such as leukemia.

Morishima Y, Kashiwase K, Matsuo K, et al.
Biological significance of HLA locus matching in unrelated donor bone marrow transplantation.
Blood. 2015; 125(7):1189-97 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We hypothesized that the compatibility of each HLA loci between donor and patient induced divergent transplant-related immunologic responses, which attributed to the individualized manifestation of clinical outcomes. Here, we analyzed 7898 Japanese pairs transplanted with T-cell-replete marrow from an unrelated donor with complete HLA allele typing data. Multivariable competing risk regression analyses were conducted to evaluate the relative risk (RR) of clinical outcomes after transplantation. A significant RR of HLA allele mismatch compared with match was seen with HLA-A, -B, -C, and -DPB1 for grade III-IV acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), and HLA-C for chronic GVHD. Of note, only HLA-C and HLA-DPB1 mismatch reduced leukemia relapse, and this graft-versus-leukemia effect of HLA-DPB1 was independent of chronic GVHD. HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 double (DRB1_DQB1) mismatch was revealed to be a significant RR for acute GVHD and mortality, whereas single mismatch was not. Thus, the number of HLA-A, -B, -C, -DPB1, and DRB1_DQB1 mismatches showed a clear-cut risk difference for acute GVHD, whereas the number of mismatches for HLA-A, -B, -C, and DRB1_DQB1 showed the same for mortality. In conclusion, we determined the biological response to HLA locus mismatch in transplant-related immunologic events, and provide a rationale for use of a personalized algorithm for unrelated donor selection.

Hu JM, Li L, Chen YZ, et al.
HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 methylation changes promote the occurrence and progression of Kazakh ESCC.
Epigenetics. 2014; 9(10):1366-73 [PubMed] Related Publications
Human leukocyte antigen II (HLA-II) plays an important role in host immune responses to cancer cells. Changes in gene methylation may result in aberrant expression of HLA-II, serving a key role in the pathogenesis of Kazakh esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). We analyzed the expression level of HLA-II (HLA-DP, -DQ, and -DR) by immunohistochemistry, as well as the methylation status of HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 by MassARRAY spectrometry in Xinjiang Kazakh ESCC. Expression of HLA-II in ESCC was significantly higher than that in cancer adjacent normal (ACN) samples (P < 0.05). Decreased HLA-II expression was closely associated with later clinical stages of ESCC (P < 0.05). Hypomethylation of HLA-DRB1 and hypermethylation of HLA-DQB1 was significantly correlated with occurrence of Kazakh ESCC (P < 0.01), and mainly manifested as hypomethylation of CpG9, CpG10-11, and CpG16 in HLA-DRB1 and hypermethylation of CpG6-7 and CpG16-17 in HLA-DQB1 (P < 0.01). Moreover, hypomethylation of HLA-DQB1 CpG6-7 correlated with poor differentiation in ESCCs, whereas hypermethylation of HLA-DRB1 CpG16 and hypomethylation of HLA-DQB1 CpG16-17 were significantly associated with later stages of ESCC (P < 0.05). A significant inverse association between HLA-DRB1 CpG9 methylation and HLA-II expression was found in ESCC (P < 0.05). These findings suggest aberrant HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 methylation contributes to the aberrant expression of HLA-II. These molecular changes may influence the immune response to specific tumor epitopes, promoting the occurrence and progression of Kazakh ESCC.

Aureli A, Canossi A, Del Beato T, et al.
HLA-DRB1*13:01 allele in the genetic susceptibility to colorectal carcinoma.
Int J Cancer. 2015; 136(10):2464-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Increasing evidence suggests that HLA-DRB1 alleles reduce or increase the risk of developing ulcerative colitis-associated colorectal carcinoma (CRC) tumors. However, the role of HLA-DRB1 locus on the susceptibility to develop CRC tumor, in the absence of a history of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), is unclear. The aim of our study was to determine whether HLA-DRB1 alleles are associated with IBD-independent CRC tumor. HLA-DRB1 allele polymorphisms were identified by sequence-based typing method in 53 CRC patients and 57 sex- and age-matched healthy Caucasian controls. Pearson's chi-squared analysis with Yate's correction or Fisher's exact test with Bonferroni's correction, as appropriate, were used to compare the allele frequency (AF) differences of HLA-DRB1 in patients and controls. A total of 29 HLA-DRB1 alleles were recognized. A detailed study of these alleles allowed to identify DRB1*13:01 and DRB1*11:01 alleles that were significantly associated with an increased and reduced risk to develop CRC tumor, respectively. AF of DRB1*13:01, in CRC patients, was significantly higher than that of healthy controls, even following Bonferroni's correction (p = 0.029). In contrast, the presence of the DRB1*11:01 allele was negatively associated with CRC tumor as evidenced by the significantly lower AF in CRC patients than that of healthy controls (p = 0.005). However, following Bonferroni's correction, the AF of DRB*11:01 lost its statistical significance. These results suggest that HLA-DRB1*13:01 allele could be a potential marker for predicting genetic susceptibility to CRC tumor. In contrast, the protective role of DRB1*11:01 remains unclear.

Hu JM, Sun Q, Li L, et al.
Human leukocyte antigen-DRB1*1501 and DQB1*0602 alleles are cervical cancer protective factors among Uighur and Han people in Xinjiang, China.
Int J Clin Exp Pathol. 2014; 7(9):6165-71 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is a major risk factor for cervical cancer. However, only some high risk human papillomavirus (HR-HPV)-infected women progress to cervical cancer, host immunogenetic factors human leukocyte antigen (HLA) may account for viral antigens presenting individually or together in the progression to cervical cancer. This study examined the association between the development of invasive cervical cancer (ICC) and the determinant factors including HLA-DRB1*1501 and DQB1*0602, HR-HPV infection among Chinese Uighur and Han populations. Blood samples, cervical swabs and biopsies were obtained from 287 patients with ICC (192 Uighurs and 95 Hans) and 312 healthy controls (218 Uighurs and 94 Hans). HPV DNA was detected by PCR and HLA-DRB1*1501 and DQB1*0602 alleles were performed using PCR-SSP method. HPV16 infection rates was significantly higher among Uighur and Han with ICC as compared to healthy controls (OR = 58.317; 95% CI: 39.663-85.744; OR = 33.778; 95% CI: 12.581-90.691; P < 0.05 for all). HLA-DRB1*1501 (OR = 0.305; 95% CI: 0.115-0.813; P < 0.05) and HLA-DRB1*1501-DQB1*0602 haplotype frequencies (OR = 0.274; 95% CI: 0.086-0.874; P < 0.05) were significantly reduced in Han ICC. The HLA-DQB1*0602 frequency significantly decreased among Uighur women with ICC (OR = 0.482; 95% CI: 0.325-0.716; P < 0.05). Similar tendencies were observed for DQB1*0602 with HPV16-positive ICC (OR = 0.550; 95% CI: 0.362-0.837; P < 0.05). This study suggests that HLA-DRB1*1501 and DQB1*0602 alleles may influence the immune response to HPV16 infection and decrease the risk of ICC among Uighurs and Hans in Xinjiang, China.

Gragert L, Fingerson S, Albrecht M, et al.
Fine-mapping of HLA associations with chronic lymphocytic leukemia in US populations.
Blood. 2014; 124(17):2657-65 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) displays remarkable ethnic predisposition for whites, with relative sparing of African-American and Asian populations. In addition, CLL displays among the highest familial predispositions of all hematologic malignancies, yet the genetic basis for these differences is not clearly defined. The highly polymorphic HLA genes of the major histocompatibility complex play a central role in immune surveillance and confer risk for autoimmune and infectious diseases and several different cancers, the role for which in the development of CLL has not been extensively investigated. The National Marrow Donor Program/Be The Match has collected HLA typing from CLL patients in need of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant and has recruited millions of volunteers to potentially donate hematopoietic stem cells. HLA genotypes for 3491 US white, 397 African-American, and 90 Hispanic CLL patients were compared with 50 000 controls per population from the donor registry. We identified several HLA alleles associated with CLL susceptibility in each population, reconfirming predisposing roles of HLA-A*02:01 and HLA-DRB4*01:01 in whites. Associations for haplotype DRB4*01:01∼DRB1*07:01∼DQB1*03:03 were replicated across all 3 populations. These findings provide a comprehensive assessment of the role of HLA in the development of severe CLL.

Fernandez CA, Smith C, Yang W, et al.
HLA-DRB1*07:01 is associated with a higher risk of asparaginase allergies.
Blood. 2014; 124(8):1266-76 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 21/08/2015 Related Publications
Asparaginase is a therapeutic enzyme used to treat leukemia and lymphoma, with immune responses resulting in suboptimal drug exposure and a greater risk of relapse. To elucidate whether there is a genetic component to the mechanism of asparaginase-induced immune responses, we imputed human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles in patients of European ancestry enrolled on leukemia trials at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital (n = 541) and the Children's Oncology Group (n = 1329). We identified a higher incidence of hypersensitivity and anti-asparaginase antibodies in patients with HLA-DRB1*07:01 alleles (P = 7.5 × 10(-5), odds ratio [OR] = 1.64; P = 1.4 × 10(-5), OR = 2.92, respectively). Structural analysis revealed that high-risk amino acids were located within the binding pocket of the HLA protein, possibly affecting the interaction between asparaginase epitopes and the HLA-DRB1 protein. Using a sequence-based consensus approach, we predicted the binding affinity of HLA-DRB1 alleles for asparaginase epitopes, and patients whose HLA genetics predicted high-affinity binding had more allergy (P = 3.3 × 10(-4), OR = 1.38). Our results suggest a mechanism of allergy whereby HLA-DRB1 alleles that confer high-affinity binding to asparaginase epitopes lead to a higher frequency of reactions. These trials were registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as NCT00137111, NCT00549848, NCT00005603, and NCT00075725.

Sayad A, Akbari MT, Mehdizadeh M, et al.
The association of HLA-class I and class II with Hodgkin's lymphoma in Iranian patients.
Biomed Res Int. 2014; 2014:231236 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 21/08/2015 Related Publications
The Hodgkin's lymphoma disease (HD) is a common malignant neoplasm with germinal centre B-cell origin. It has been suggested that the HLA class I and class II regions have susceptibility effects on HD. In different ethnic groups, different HLA class I and class II alleles affect HD. As a result, there is no consensus which of the different HLA alleles confers susceptibility to HD. In this study, we aimed to ascertain the role of HLA class I and class II alleles in association with Hodgkin's lymphoma in Iranian patients. We performed a case-control genotyping study in 85 Iranian HD patients which were selected from the Bone Marrow Transplantation Department of Taleghani Hospital and 150 controls using the SSP-PCR. Our results demonstrated that the HLA-A*68, HLA-B*51, and HLA-DRB1*15 alleles were significantly more frequent in HD patients in comparison to controls (P = 0.026; OR = 6.188, P = 0.00008; OR = 2.86, P = 0.00006; OR = 5.315, resp.) and they have significant susceptibility effects on HD in Iranian population. There are reports of other populations with regard to consistency and inconsistency to our results. Further studies with large sample size or the meta-analysis are needed to explain the exact associations of HLA gene with HD.

An WX, Fan YX, Liang XH, Liu H
Changes in median ages at death from selected cancer types in relation to HLA-DRB1/DQB1.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2014; 15(10):4125-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The median ages at death from cancers between 1985 and 2005 were calculated to demonstrate that inherent anticancer mechanisms may be a common pathway for different cancers. Seventy-eight patients with gastric, liver and lung cancers, were recruited in the solid cancer group. The leukemia group consisted of 31 patients with three main types of leukemia. The controls were 100 healthy individuals. The samples were typed using an HLA-DR/DQ PCR-SSP typing kit. The results showed that the median ages at death from all causes were 64.7 years in 1985 and 70.1 years in 2005. The range of the median ages at death from all cancers was similar to the corresponding value for deaths attributed to all causes. The frequency of DRB1*03 was 9.6% in the solid cancer group and 3.0% in the control group (p<0.05). The frequency of DRB1*04 in the leukemia group were significantly lower than that of the control (p<0.05). DRB1*13 and DQB1*06 frequencies in the leukemia group were significantly higher than those of the controls (p<0.05). It is suggested that inherent anti-cancer mechanisms may be a common pathway for different cancers and are associated with the immune system and HLA.

Arons E, Adams S, Venzon DJ, et al.
Class II human leucocyte antigen DRB1*11 in hairy cell leukaemia patients with and without haemolytic uraemic syndrome.
Br J Haematol. 2014; 166(5):729-38 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
Frequencies of human leucocyte antigens (HLA) were determined in 287 classic hairy cell leukaemia (HCL) patients. With respect to both population (n = 287) and allele (2n = 574) frequency respectively, the most common HLA class I and II antigens expressed were HLA-A*02 (49·1% and 28·6%), HLA-B*07 (21·3% and 11·1%), HLA-C*07 (46·7 and 28·2%), HLA-DQB1*03 (62·7% and 37·3%), HLA-DRB1*11 (30·0% and 16·0%) and HLA-DRB4*01 (45·3% and 29·6%). In comparing 6-14 databases of control Caucasians to 267 Caucasian HCL patients, only HLA-DRB1*11 was consistently over-represented in HCL, 31·1% of patients vs. 17-19·9% of controls (P = 0·0055 to <0·0001) and 16·5% of alleles vs. 6·5-12·3% of control alleles (P = 0·022 to <0·0001). HLA-DRB1*11 is a known risk factor for acquired thrombotic microangiopathy. Anti-CD22 recombinant immunotoxin BL22 in HCL was associated with a 12% incidence of completely reversible grade 3-4 haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS), mainly during the second or third retreatment cycle. Of 49 HCL patients receiving ≥2 cycles of BL22, 7 (14%) had HUS and HLA-DRB1*11 was expressed in 71% of 7 with HUS compared with only 21% of 42 without (P = 0·015). These data suggest that DBR1*11 may be a marker for increased susceptibility to HCL and, among HCL patients, could be a risk factor for BL22-induced HUS.

Chen D, Gyllensten U
Systematic investigation of contribution of genetic variation in the HLA-DP region to cervical cancer susceptibility.
Carcinogenesis. 2014; 35(8):1765-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Compared with the other human leukocyte antigen (HLA) genes, few studies have evaluated the role of HLA-DP genes in cervical cancer pathogenesis. A recent genome-wide association study (GWAS) in the Swedish population has identified a susceptibility locus for cervical cancer within the HLA-DP region. To further study this locus, we imputed classic HLA alleles using single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data and analysed 449 genotyped and 3066 imputed SNPs in 1034 cervical cancer patients and 3948 controls. We confirmed that the strongest signal came from a SNP located at HLA-DPB2 [rs3117027, odds ratio (OR) = 1.29, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.16-1.43, P = 1.9 × 10(-6) for A allele] and that this effect is not driven by associations with classic HLA alleles. In silico analysis further revealed that this SNP is highly correlated with rs3129294 (D' = 1, r(2) = 0.95 in controls), which may have a putative regulatory function. We also identified an independent association at DPB1*0402, which conferred decreased risk of cervical cancer (OR = 0.75, 95% CI = 0.63-0.89, P = 7.0 × 10(-4)) and is independent of previously described associations with HLA-B*0702, DRB1*1501-DQB1*0602, and DRB1*1301-DQA1*0103-DQB1*0603. No association was found with the two SNPs (rs4282438 or rs9277952) that were recently identified within the HLA-DP region in a cervical cancer GWAS in the Chinese population. Our study provides the first systematic investigation of the association of genetic variants in the HLA-DP region with cervical cancer susceptibility and provides further insight into the contribution of polymorphisms in the HLA-DP region to risk of cervical cancer.

Schaid DJ, Spraggs CF, McDonnell SK, et al.
Prospective validation of HLA-DRB1*07:01 allele carriage as a predictive risk factor for lapatinib-induced liver injury.
J Clin Oncol. 2014; 32(22):2296-303 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Liver injury is a serious adverse event leading to permanent discontinuation of lapatinib in affected patients. This study aimed to validate previously associated major histocompatibility complex (MHC) variants as predictors of risk of liver injury by using a large, randomized, placebo-controlled trial of lapatinib in human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-positive, early-stage breast cancer (Tykerb Evaluation After Chemotherapy [TEACH]: Lapatinib Versus Placebo In Women With Early-Stage Breast Cancer).
PATIENTS AND METHODS: The frequency of ALT elevation cases was compared among four MHC variants in 1,194 patients randomly assigned to lapatinib. Cumulative ALT elevation time courses during treatment were also compared between carriers and noncarriers of specified MHC variants.
RESULTS: In lapatinib-treated patients, there was a significant difference in ALT case incidence between HLA carriers and noncarriers. The highly correlated alleles HLA-DRB1*07:01 and HLA-DQA1*02:01 (study frequency, 22.4%) were associated with ALT elevation (odds ratio, 14) between cases (n = 37) and controls (n = 1,071). These associations strengthened at higher ALT elevation thresholds and in Hy's Law cases. In lapatinib-treated patients, the overall risk for National Cancer Institute-Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events grade 3 ALT elevation (> 5× upper limit of normal) was 2.1%; HLA allele carriers had an increased risk of 7.7%; in noncarriers, risk was reduced to 0.5%, comparable to ALT elevation for all patients receiving placebo. The increase in ALT case incidence in the lapatinib arm showed no evidence of plateau during 1 year of lapatinib treatment.
CONCLUSION: These results validate HLA-DRB1*07:01 allele carriage as a predictor of increased risk of lapatinib-induced liver injury and implicate an immune pathology. The HLA association could support clinical management of patients experiencing hepatotoxicity during lapatinib treatment.

Byler S, Goldgar S, Heerboth S, et al.
Genetic and epigenetic aspects of breast cancer progression and therapy.
Anticancer Res. 2014; 34(3):1071-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although breast cancer is a heterogeneous disease that is challenging to characterize and treat, the recent explosion of genetic and epigenetic research may help improve these endeavors. In the present review, we use genetic diversity to characterize and classify different types of breast cancer. We also discuss genetic and epigenetic changes that are involved in the development of different breast cancer types and examine how these changes affect prognosis. It appears that while a combination of mutations and copy number changes determine the type of breast cancer, epigenetic alterations may be the primary initiators of cancer development. Understanding these critical biomarkers and molecular changes will advance our ability to effectively treat breast cancer. Next, we examine potential drug therapies directed at epigenetic changes, as such epigenetic drug treatments may prove useful for treating patient-specific tumors, breast cancer progenitor cells, and drug-resistant cells. Lastly, we discuss on mechanisms of carcinogenesis, including a novel hypothesis outlining the role of epigenetics in the development of cancer progenitor cells and metastasis. Overall, breast cancer subtypes may have a similar epigenetic signal that promotes cancer development, and treatment may be most effective if both epigenetic and genetic differences are targeted.

Wei LZ, Wang HL, Liu X, et al.
Meta-analysis on the relationship between HLA-DRBl gene polymorphism and cervical cancer in Chinese population.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(2):e88439 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
AIM: To determine the association between HLA-DRB1 haplotypes and risk of cervical cancer in unselected and samples from Chinese ethnicities.
METHODS: A comprehensive search for articles from their inception to April 1st, 2013 was conducted from PubMed, Medline, Elsevier Science, Springer Link, Cochrane Library database, China biology medical literature database (CBM),China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI),VIP,and Chinese literature database(Wang fang). A total of 1596 patients with cervical cancer and 2048 controls from the 12 studies on the relationship between gene polymorphism of HLA-DRB l and cervical cancer were performed and data were analyzed and processed using Review Manager 5.0 and Stata 11.0.
RESULTS: Among the 13 family alleles, two (DRB1*03 and DRB1*08) were found to be negatively associated with cervical cancer in all studies or in Uighur subgroups, and two (DRB1*10 and DRB1*15) were positively associated with in all studies or in Uighur subgroups. Among the 25 specific alleles, six (DRB1*0301, *0403,*0404, *0803, *1312 and *1502) were associated with an increased risk cervical cancer in all studies. No significant association was established for other HLA-DRB1 family alleles and specific alleles. Ethnicity partially explained the race influence of DRB1*12, DRB1*14, DRB1*0301, DRB1*0403, DRB1*0404, DRB1*0803, DRB1*1312 and DRB1*1502 phenotypes.
CONCLUSION: Our results support the hypothesis that the HLA-DRB1 family alleles and specific alleles might influence the susceptibility or resistance to cervical cancer, suggesting that immune regulation may play a key role in this disease, although further investigations are still needed.

Brazzelli V, Rivetti N, Badulli C, et al.
Immunogenetic factors in mycosis fungoides: can the HLA system influence the susceptibility and prognosis of the disease? Long-term follow-up study of 46 patients.
J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2014; 28(12):1732-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Mycosis fungoides (MF) is the most common and one of the least aggressive forms of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. Several studies have demonstrated the influence of human leucocyte antigen (HLA) genes on the susceptibility of MF, highlighting the importance of certain alleles but, until today, no studies have evaluated the relationship between HLA alleles and the prognosis of patients with MF.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this retrospective cohort study was to evaluate the polymorphism of HLA class I and class II alleles in a group of 46 MF Caucasian patients, looking for their influence in susceptibility and prognosis of the disease.
METHODS: Study population included a case-cohort sample of 46 Caucasian patients with MF that, between 1993 and 1997, underwent HLA class I and II genomic typing. All patients were diagnosed and followed up from 1977 to 2012 (mean follow-up of 11 years) and they were divided into three groups according to the evolution of the disease.
RESULTS: Molecular typing at low-resolution level revealed that HLA-A*24, A*68, A*69, B*35 and DQB1*05:02 alleles were involved in susceptibility to MF. Correspondence analysis underlined that long-lasting remission was characterized by HLA-A*24 and HLA-A*25 alleles, frequent relapse by HLA-DRB1*01, DQA1*01:01, DQB1*05:01 alleles and death by HLA-A*68, HLA-B*08, HLA-B*35, HLA-C*03 alleles.
CONCLUSION: This study suggests that the prognosis of MF patients is not only correlated with clinical/pathological/serological/immunological variables but it also relies on specific HLA alleles.

Chen D, Gyllensten U
A cis-eQTL of HLA-DRB1 and a frameshift mutation of MICA contribute to the pattern of association of HLA alleles with cervical cancer.
Cancer Med. 2014; 3(2):445-52 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
The association of classic human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles with risk of cervical cancer has been extensively studied, and a protective effect has consistently been found for DRB1*1301, DQA1*0103, and/or DQB1*0603 (these three alleles are in perfect linkage disequilibrium [LD] and often occur on the same haplotype in Europeans), while reports have differed widely with respect to the effect of HLA-B*07, DRB1*1501, and/or DQB1*0602 (the last two alleles are also in perfect LD in Europeans). It is not clear whether the reported HLA alleles are responsible for the differences in cervical cancer susceptibility, or if functional variants at other locations within the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region may explain the effect. In order to assess the relative contribution of both classic HLA alleles and single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the MHC region to cervical cancer susceptibility, we have imputed classic HLA alleles in 1034 cervical cancer patients and 3948 controls in a Swedish population for an integrated analysis. We found that the protective haplotype DRB1*1301-DQA1*0103-DQB1*0603 has a direct effect on cervical cancer and always occurs together with the C allele of a HLA-DRB1 cis-eQTL (rs9272143), which increases the expression of HLA-DRB1. The haplotype rs9272143C-DRB1*1301-DQA1*0103-DQB1*0603 conferred the strongest protection against cervical cancer (odds ratio [OR] = 0.41, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.32-0.52, P = 6.2 × 10(-13)). On the other hand, the associations with HLA-B*0702 and DRB1*1501-DQB1*0602 are attributable to the joint effects of both the HLA-DRB1 cis-eQTL (rs9272143) and a frameshift mutation (G inserion of rs67841474, also known as A5.1) of the MHC class I polypeptide-related sequence A gene (MICA). Variation in LD between the classic HLA loci, rs9272143 and rs67841474 between populations may explain the different associations of HLA-B*07 and DRB1*1501-DQB1*0602 with cervical cancer between studies. The mechanism suggested may also explain similar inconsistent results for other HLA-associated diseases.

Sanz J, Jaramillo FJ, Planelles D, et al.
Impact on outcomes of human leukocyte antigen matching by allele-level typing in adults with acute myeloid leukemia undergoing umbilical cord blood transplantation.
Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 2014; 20(1):106-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
This retrospective study analyzed the impact of directional donor-recipient human leukocyte antigen (HLA) disparity using allele-level typing at HLA-A, -B, -C, and -DRB1 in 79 adults with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) who received single-unit umbilical cord blood (UCB) transplant at a single institution. With extended high-resolution HLA typing, the donor-recipient compatibility ranged from 2/8 to 8/8. HLA disparity showed no negative impact on nonrelapse mortality (NRM), graft-versus-host (GVH) disease or engraftment. Considering disparities in the GVH direction, the 5-year cumulative incidence of relapse was 44% and 22% for patients receiving an UCB unit matched ≥ 6/8 and < 6/8, respectively (P = .04). In multivariable analysis, a higher HLA disparity in the GVH direction using extended high-resolution typing (Risk ratio [RR] 2.8; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.5 to 5.1; P = .0009) and first complete remission at time of transplantation (RR 2.1; 95% CI, 1.2 to 3.8; P = .01) were the only variables significantly associated with an improved disease-free survival. In conclusion, we found that in adults with AML undergoing single-unit UCBT, an increased number of HLA disparities at allele-level typing improved disease-free survival by decreasing the relapse rate without a negative effect on NRM.

Fernandez-Viña MA, Wang T, Lee SJ, et al.
Identification of a permissible HLA mismatch in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
Blood. 2014; 123(8):1270-8 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
In subjects mismatched in the HLA alleles C*03:03/C*03:04 no allogeneic cytotoxic T-lymphocyte responses are detected in vitro. Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) with unrelated donors (UDs) showed no association between the HLA-C allele mismatches (CAMMs) and adverse outcomes; antigen mismatches at this and mismatches other HLA loci are deleterious. The absence of effect of the CAMM may have resulted from the predominance of the mismatch C*03:03/C*03:04. Patients with hematologic malignancies receiving UD HSCT matched in 8/8 and 7/8 HLA alleles were examined. Transplants mismatched in HLA-C antigens or mismatched in HLA-A, -B, or -DRB1 presented significant differences (P < .0001) in mortality (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.37, 1.30), disease-free survival (HR = 1.33, 1.27), treatment-related mortality (HR = 1.54, 1.54), and grade 3-4 acute graft-versus-host disease (HR = 1.49, 1.77) compared with the 8/8 group; transplants mismatched in other CAMMs had similar outcomes with HR ranging from 1.34 to 172 for these endpoints. The C*03:03/C*03:04 mismatched and the 8/8 matched groups had identical outcomes (HR ranging from 0.96-1.05). The previous finding that CAMMs do not associate with adverse outcomes is explained by the predominance (69%) of the mismatch C*03:03/03:04 in this group that is better tolerated than other HLA mismatches.

Chen D, Hammer J, Lindquist D, et al.
A variant upstream of HLA-DRB1 and multiple variants in MICA influence susceptibility to cervical cancer in a Swedish population.
Cancer Med. 2014; 3(1):190-8 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
In a genome-wide association study, we have previously identified and performed the initial replication of three novel susceptibility loci for cervical cancer: rs9272143 upstream of HLA-DRB1, rs2516448 adjacent to MHC class I polypeptide-related sequence A gene (MICA), and rs3117027 at HLA-DPB2. The risk allele T of rs2516448 is in perfect linkage disequilibrium with a frameshift mutation (A5.1) in MICA exon 5, which results in a truncated protein. To validate these associations in an independent study and extend our prior work to MICA exon 5, we genotyped the single-nucleotide polymorphisms at rs9272143, rs2516448, rs3117027 and the MICA exon 5 microsatellite in a nested case-control study of 961 cervical cancer patients (827 carcinoma in situ and 134 invasive carcinoma) and 1725 controls from northern Sweden. The C allele of rs9272143 conferred protection against cervical cancer (odds ratio [OR] = 0.73, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.65-0.82; P = 1.6 × 10(-7)), which is associated with higher expression level of HLA-DRB1, whereas the T allele of rs2516448 increased the susceptibility to cervical cancer (OR = 1.33, 95% CI = 1.19-1.49; P = 5.8 × 10(-7)), with the same association shown with MICA-A5.1. The direction and the magnitude of these associations were consistent with our previous findings. We also identified protective effects of the MICA-A4 (OR = 0.80, 95% CI = 0.68-0.94; P = 6.7 × 10(-3)) and MICA-A5 (OR = 0.60, 95% CI = 0.50-0.72; P = 3.0 × 10(-8)) alleles. The associations with these variants are unlikely to be driven by the nearby human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles. No association was observed between rs3117027 and risk of cervical cancer. Our results support the role of HLA-DRB1 and MICA in the pathogenesis of cervical cancer.

Atoum MF, Tanashat RQ, Mahmoud SA
Negative association of the HLA-DQB1*02 allele with breast cancer development among Jordanians.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2013; 14(11):7007-10 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: In the literature, data concerning the relationship between breast cancer and HLA class II gene polymorphisms are limited, so the aim of this study was to determine if HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 MHC class-II alleles may confer susceptibility or resistance to the disease among Jordanian females.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This case control study enrolled 56 Royal Hospital breast cancer patients and 60 age matched healthy controls, all of whom provided blood samples (2011-2013). A questionnaire was filled after signing a consent form and DNA was extracted, nucleic acids being amplified for assessment of HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 alleles by muliplex INNO-LiPA and allele typing carried out by reverse hybridization. Comparison of HLA-DQB1 and HLA-DRB1 allele distributions was carried out with paired t-test and chi-square statistics. Risk factors were assessed by odd ratios with 95% confidence intervals.
RESULTS: A significant negative correlation was observed between HLADQB1* 02 alleles and breast cancers (p=0.013). No significant associations were observed among HLADQB1* 03, 04, 05 and 06 or among HLA-DRB1* 01, 03, 04, 07, 08, 10, 11, 13, 14 and 15.
CONCLUSIONS: HLADQB1* 02 alleles may provide positive protection against breast tumor risk among Jordanians, but not HLADQB1* 03, 04, 05 and 06 or HLA-DRB1* 01, 03, 04, 07, 08, 10, 11, 13, 14 and 15 alleles.

Shuxian J, Xiaoyun C, Zhihui F, et al.
Association of HLA-B*51:01 with papillary thyroid carcinoma in the Chinese Han population of the Shandong coastal areas.
Thyroid. 2014; 24(5):867-71 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: A lot of work has been done to study the association between human leukocyte antigen (HLA) and papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) in various populations. But the results of the currently available studies are not consistent. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association of HLA-A, -B, -C, -DRB1, and -DQB1 with PTC in the Chinese Han population of the coastal areas of Shandong Province with respect to age and sex.
METHODS: A total of 154 patients diagnosed with PTC were analyzed for HLA-A, -B, -C, -DRB1, and -DQB1 alleles by using a polymerase chain reaction sequence-based typing (PCR-SBT) method. Two hundred unrelated healthy individuals were typed as controls.
RESULTS: Compared with the controls, the HLA-B*51:01 (8.8% vs. 4.5%, p=0.029, OR 2.039 [CI 1.101-3.775]) and HLA-C*07:06 (2.6% vs. 0.5%, p=0.024, OR 5.307 [CI 1.119-25.171]) allele frequencies were higher in the PTC patients, while the HLA-C*07:01 (1.3% vs. 6.0%, p=0.001, OR 0.206 [CI 0.071-0.601]) allele frequency was lower in the PTC patients that did not persist after Bonferroni correction for multiple tests. This showed no statistically significant correlation of the HLA-A, -DRB1, and -DQB1 alleles and PTC. The incidence of PTC was more frequent in females between 30 and 60 years old. There were no significant differences in the age and sex distributions between the total and the HLA-B*51:01 positive PTC patients.
CONCLUSIONS: The HLA associations in this Chinese Han population differ markedly from studies done in Europeans and Caucasians. The results reveal that HLA-B*51:01 is more likely to be a susceptible allele for PTC in addition to age and sex in the coastal areas of Shandong Province.

Sillé FC, Conde L, Zhang J, et al.
Follicular lymphoma-protective HLA class II variants correlate with increased HLA-DQB1 protein expression.
Genes Immun. 2014; 15(2):133-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Multiple follicular lymphoma (FL) susceptibility single-nucleotide polymorphisms in the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I and II regions have been identified, including rs6457327, rs3117222, rs2647012, rs10484561, rs9268853 and rs2621416. Here we validated previous expression quantitative trait loci results with real-time reverse transcription quantitative PCR and investigated protein expression in B-lymphoblastoid cell lines and primary dendritic cells using flow cytometry, cell-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and western blotting. We confirmed that FL-protective rs2647012-linked variants, in high linkage disequilibrium with the extended haplotype DRB1*15:01-DQA1*01:02-DQB1*06:02, correlate with increased HLA-DQB1 expression. This association remained significant at the protein level and was reproducible across different cell types. We also found that differences in HLA-DQB1 expression were not related to changes in activation markers or class II, major histocompatibility complex, transactivator expression, suggesting the role of an alternative regulatory mechanism. However, functional analysis using RegulomeDB did not reveal any relevant regulatory candidates. Future studies should focus on the clinical relevance of increased HLA-DQB1 protein expression facilitating tumor cell removal through increased immune surveillance.

Kim H, Gao W, Ho M
Novel immunocytokine IL12-SS1 (Fv) inhibits mesothelioma tumor growth in nude mice.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(11):e81919 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
Mesothelin is a glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored glycoprotein that is highly expressed on the cell surface of malignant mesothelioma. Monoclonal antibodies against mesothelin are being evaluated for the treatment of mesothelioma. Immunocytokines represent a novel class of armed antibodies. To provide an alternative approach to current mesothelin-targeted antibody therapies, we have developed a novel immunocytokine based on interleukin-12 (IL12) and the SS1 Fv specific for mesothelin. IL12 possesses potent anti-tumor activity in a wide variety of solid tumors. The newly-developed recombinant immunocytokine, IL12-SS1 (Fv), was produced in insect cells using a baculovirus-insect cell expression system. The SS1 single-chain Fv was fused to the C terminus of the p35 subunit of IL12 through a short linker (GSADGG). The single-chain IL12-SS1 (Fv) immunocytokine bound native mesothelin proteins on malignant mesothelioma (NCI-H226) and ovarian (OVCAR-3) cells as well as recombinant mesothelin on A431/H9 cells. The immunocytokine retained sufficient bioactivity of IL12 and significantly inhibited human malignant mesothelioma (NCI-H226) grown in the peritoneal cavity of nude mice and showed comparable anti-tumor activity to that of the SS1P immunotoxin. IL12-SS1 (Fv) is the first reported immunocytokine to mesothelin-positive tumors and may be an attractive addition to mesothelin-targeted cancer therapies.

Stalika E, Papalexandri A, Iskas M, et al.
Familial CD3+ T large granular lymphocyte leukemia: evidence that genetic predisposition and antigen selection promote clonal cytotoxic T-cell responses.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2014; 55(8):1781-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
CD3+ T-large granular lymphocyte (T-LGL) proliferations often present with cytopenias and splenomegaly and are linked to autoimmunity, especially rheumatoid arthritis and Felty's syndrome. We report here the intra-family occurrence of T-LGL leukemia in a father and son, both presenting with cytopenias and splenomegaly. Both patients carried the HLA-DRB1*04 allele, strongly associated with rheumatoid arthritis and Felty's syndrome, exhibited distinctive histopathological features suggestive of immune-mediated suppression of hematopoiesis and expressed a remarkably skewed T-cell receptor beta chain gene repertoire with overtime evolution (clonal drift). Immunoinformatics analysis and comparisons with clonotype sequences from various entities revealed (quasi)identities between (i) father and son, and (ii) father or son and patients with autoimmune disorders, T-LGL leukemia or chronic idiopathic neutropenia. Altogether, our results further corroborate antigen selection in the ontogeny of T-LGL leukemia and point to the interplay between genetics and the (micro)environment in shaping the outcome of cytotoxic T cell responses.

Sarkar S, Horn G, Moulton K, et al.
Cancer development, progression, and therapy: an epigenetic overview.
Int J Mol Sci. 2013; 14(10):21087-113 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
Carcinogenesis involves uncontrolled cell growth, which follows the activation of oncogenes and/or the deactivation of tumor suppression genes. Metastasis requires down-regulation of cell adhesion receptors necessary for tissue-specific, cell-cell attachment, as well as up-regulation of receptors that enhance cell motility. Epigenetic changes, including histone modifications, DNA methylation, and DNA hydroxymethylation, can modify these characteristics. Targets for these epigenetic changes include signaling pathways that regulate apoptosis and autophagy, as well as microRNA. We propose that predisposed normal cells convert to cancer progenitor cells that, after growing, undergo an epithelial-mesenchymal transition. This process, which is partially under epigenetic control, can create a metastatic form of both progenitor and full-fledged cancer cells, after which metastasis to a distant location may occur. Identification of epigenetic regulatory mechanisms has provided potential therapeutic avenues. In particular, epigenetic drugs appear to potentiate the action of traditional therapeutics, often by demethylating and re-expressing tumor suppressor genes to inhibit tumorigenesis. Epigenetic drugs may inhibit both the formation and growth of cancer progenitor cells, thus reducing the recurrence of cancer. Adopting epigenetic alteration as a new hallmark of cancer is a logical and necessary step that will further encourage the development of novel epigenetic biomarkers and therapeutics.

Eapen M, Klein JP, Ruggeri A, et al.
Impact of allele-level HLA matching on outcomes after myeloablative single unit umbilical cord blood transplantation for hematologic malignancy.
Blood. 2014; 123(1):133-40 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
We studied the effect of allele-level matching at human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-A, -B, -C, and -DRB1 in 1568 single umbilical cord blood (UCB) transplantations for hematologic malignancy. The primary end point was nonrelapse mortality (NRM). Only 7% of units were allele matched at HLA-A, -B, -C, and -DRB1; 15% were mismatched at 1, 26% at 2, 30% at 3, 16% at 4, and 5% at 5 alleles. In a subset, allele-level HLA match was assigned using imputation; concordance between HLA-match assignment and outcome correlation was confirmed between the actual and imputed HLA-match groups. Compared with HLA-matched units, neutrophil recovery was lower with mismatches at 3, 4, or 5, but not 1 or 2 alleles. NRM was higher with units mismatched at 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 alleles compared with HLA-matched units. The observed effects are independent of cell dose and patient age. These data support allele-level HLA matching in the selection of single UCB units.

Zhang L, Chen Z, Li Y
Dual-degradable disulfide-containing PEI-Pluronic/DNA polyplexes: transfection efficiency and balancing protection and DNA release.
Int J Nanomedicine. 2013; 8:3689-701 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
Polymeric gene-delivery vectors to achieve lack of toxicity and a balance between protection and DNA release remains a formidable challenge. Incorporating intracellular environment-responsive degradable bonds is an appreciable step toward developing safer transfection agents. In this study, novel, dual-degradable polycation copolymers (Pluronic-diacrylate [PA]-polyethyleneimine [PEI]-SS) were synthesized through the addition of low molecular weight (800 Da) PEI cross-linked with SS (PEI-SS) to PA. Three PA-PEI-SS copolymers (PA-PEI-SS1, 2, and 3) with different PEI-SS to Pluronic molar ratios were investigated and found to strongly condense plasmid DNA into positively charged nanoparticles with an average particle size of approximately 200 nm and to possess higher stability against DNase I digestion and sodium heparin. Disulfide and ester bonds of the copolymers were susceptible to intracellular redox conditions. In vitro experiments demonstrated that the PA-PEI-SS copolymers had significantly lower cytotoxicity and higher transfection efficiency in both BGC-823 and 293T cell lines than the controls of degradable PEI-SS and nondegradable 25 kDa PEI. Transfection activity was influenced by the PEI-SS content in the polymers and PA-PEI-SS1 showed the highest efficiency of the three copolymers. These studies suggest that these dual-degradable copolymers could be used as potential biocompatible gene delivery carriers.

Takai E, Tsukimoto M, Kojima S
TGF-β1 downregulates COX-2 expression leading to decrease of PGE2 production in human lung cancer A549 cells, which is involved in fibrotic response to TGF-β1.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(10):e76346 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
Transforming growth factor-ß1 (TGF-β1) is a multifunctional cytokine that is involved in various pathophysiological processes, including cancer progression and fibrotic disorders. Here, we show that treatment with TGF-β1 (5 ng/mL) induced downregulation of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), leading to reduced synthesis of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), in human lung cancer A549 cells. Treatment of cells with specific inhibitors of COX-2 or PGE2 receptor resulted in growth inhibition, indicating that the COX-2/PGE2 pathway contributes to proliferation in an autocrine manner. TGF-β1 treatment induced growth inhibition, which was attenuated by exogenous PGE2. TGF-β1 is also a potent inducer of epithelial mesenchymal transition (EMT), a phenotype change in which epithelial cells differentiate into fibroblastoid cells. Supplementation with PGE2 or PGE2 receptor EP4 agonist PGE1-alcohol, as compared with EP1/3 agonist sulprostone, inhibited TGF-β1-induced expression of fibronectin and collagen I (extracellular matrix components). Exogenous PGE2 or PGE2 receptor agonists also suppressed actin remodeling induced by TGF-β1. These results suggest that PGE2 has an anti-fibrotic effect. We conclude that TGF-β1-induced downregulation of COX-2/PGE2 signaling is involved in facilitation of fibrotic EMT response in A549 cells.

Antelmi E, Cardone RA, Greco MR, et al.
ß1 integrin binding phosphorylates ezrin at T567 to activate a lipid raft signalsome driving invadopodia activity and invasion.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(9):e75113 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/09/2015 Related Publications
Extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation is a critical process in tumor cell invasion and requires matrix degrading protrusions called invadopodia. The Na(+)/H(+) exchanger (NHE1) has recently been shown to be fundamental in the regulation of invadopodia actin cytoskeleton dynamics and activity. However, the structural link between the invadopodia cytoskeleton and NHE1 is still unknown. A candidate could be ezrin, a linker between the NHE1 and the actin cytoskeleton known to play a pivotal role in invasion and metastasis. However, the mechanistic basis for its role remains unknown. Here, we demonstrate that ezrin phosphorylated at T567 is highly overexpressed in the membrane of human breast tumors and positively associated with invasive growth and HER2 overexpression. Further, in the metastatic cell line, MDA-MB-231, p-ezrin was almost exclusively expressed in invadopodia lipid rafts where it co-localized in a functional complex with NHE1, EGFR, ß1-integrin and phosphorylated-NHERF1. Manipulation by mutation of ezrins T567 phosphorylation state and/or PIP2 binding capacity or of NHE1s binding to ezrin or PIP2 demonstrated that p-ezrin expression and binding to PIP2 are required for invadopodia-mediated ECM degradation and invasion and identified NHE1 as the membrane protein that p-ezrin regulates to induce invadopodia formation and activity.

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