CDK6 is an essential direct target of NUP98 fusion proteins in acute myeloid leukemia.
ABSTRACT: Fusion proteins involving Nucleoporin 98 (NUP98) are recurrently found in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and are associated with poor prognosis. Lack of mechanistic insight into NUP98-fusion-dependent oncogenic transformation has so far precluded the development of rational targeted therapies. We reasoned that different NUP98-fusion proteins deregulate a common set of transcriptional targets that might be exploitable for therapy. To decipher transcriptional programs controlled by diverse NUP98-fusion proteins, we developed mouse models for regulatable expression of NUP98/NSD1, NUP98/JARID1A, and NUP98/DDX10. By integrating chromatin occupancy profiles of NUP98-fusion proteins with transcriptome profiling upon acute fusion protein inactivation in vivo, we defined the core set of direct transcriptional targets of NUP98-fusion proteins. Among those, CDK6 was highly expressed in murine and human AML samples. Loss of CDK6 severely attenuated NUP98-fusion-driven leukemogenesis, and NUP98-fusion AML was sensitive to pharmacologic CDK6 inhibition in vitro and in vivo. These findings identify CDK6 as a conserved, critical direct target of NUP98-fusion proteins, proposing CDK4/CDK6 inhibitors as a new rational treatment option for AML patients with NUP98-fusions.
Project description:NUP98 gene rearrangements occur in acute myeloid leukemia and result in the expression of fusion proteins. One of the most frequent is NUP98-DDX10 that fuses a portion of NUP98 to a portion of DDX10, a putative DEAD-box RNA helicase. Here, we show that NUP98-DDX10 dramatically increases proliferation and self-renewal of primary human CD34+ cells, and disrupts their erythroid and myeloid differentiation. It localizes to their nuclei and extensively deregulates gene expression. Comparison to another leukemogenic NUP98 fusion, NUP98-HOXA9, reveals a number of genes deregulated by both oncoproteins, including HOX genes, COX-2, MYCN, ANGPT1, REN, HEY1, SOX4 and others. These genes may account for the similar leukemogenic properties of NUP98 fusion oncogenes. The YIHRAGRTAR sequence in the DDX10 portion of NUP98-DDX10 represents a major motif shared by DEAD-box RNA helicases that is required for ATP binding, RNA-binding and helicase functions. Mutating this motif diminished the in vitro transforming ability of NUP98-DDX10, indicating that it has a role in leukemogenesis. These data show for the first time the in vitro transforming ability of NUP98-DDX10 and show that it is partially dependent on one of the consensus helicase motifs of DDX10. They also point to common pathways that may underlie leukemogenesis by different NUP98 fusions.
Project description:NUP98 is a nucleoporin that plays complex roles in the nucleocytoplasmic trafficking of macromolecules. Rearrangements of the NUP98 gene in human leukemia result in the expression of numerous fusion oncoproteins whose effect on nucleocytoplasmic trafficking is poorly understood. The present study was undertaken to determine the effects of leukemogenic NUP98 fusion proteins on CRM1-mediated nuclear export. NUP98-HOXA9, a prototypic NUP98 fusion, inhibited the nuclear export of two known CRM1 substrates: mutated cytoplasmic nucleophosmin and HIV-1 Rev. In vitro binding assays revealed that NUP98-HOXA9 binds CRM1 through the FG repeat motif in a Ran-GTP-dependent manner similar to but stronger than the interaction between CRM1 and its export substrates. Two NUP98 fusions, NUP98-HOXA9 and NUP98-DDX10, whose fusion partners are structurally and functionally unrelated, interacted with endogenous CRM1 in myeloid cells as shown by co-immunoprecipitation. These leukemogenic NUP98 fusion proteins interacted with CRM1, Ran, and the nucleoporin NUP214 in a manner fundamentally different from that of wild-type NUP98. NUP98-HOXA9 and NUP98-DDX10 formed characteristic aggregates within the nuclei of a myeloid cell line and primary human CD34+ cells and caused aberrant localization of CRM1 to these aggregates. These NUP98 fusions caused nuclear accumulation of two transcription factors, NFAT and NFkappaB, that are regulated by CRM1-mediated export. The nuclear entrapment of NFAT and NFkappaB correlated with enhanced transcription from promoters responsive to these transcription factors. Taken together, the results suggest a new mechanism by which NUP98 fusions dysregulate transcription and cause leukemia, namely, inhibition of CRM1-mediated nuclear export with aberrant nuclear retention of transcriptional regulators.
Project description:In this report, we show that expression of a NUP98-PHF23 (NP23) fusion, associated with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in humans, leads to myeloid, erythroid, T-cell, and B-cell leukemia in mice. The leukemic and preleukemic tissues display a stem cell-like expression signature, including Hoxa, Hoxb, and Meis1 genes. The PHF23 plant homeodomain (PHD) motif is known to bind to H3K4me3 residues, and chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrated that the NP23 protein binds to chromatin at a specific subset of H3K4me3 sites, including at Hoxa, Hoxb, and Meis1. Treatment of NP23 cells with disulfiram, which inhibits the binding of PHD motifs to H3K4me3, rapidly and selectively killed NP23-expressing myeloblasts; cell death was preceded by decreased expression of Hoxa, Hoxb, and Meis1. Furthermore, AML driven by a related fusion gene, NUP98-JARID1A (NJL), was also sensitive to disulfiram. Thus, the NP23 mouse provides a platform to evaluate compounds that disrupt binding of oncogenic PHD proteins to H3K4me3.
Project description:Structural chromosomal rearrangements of the Nucleoporin 98 gene (NUP98), primarily balanced translocations and inversions, are associated with a wide array of hematopoietic malignancies. NUP98 is known to be fused to at least 28 different partner genes in patients with hematopoietic malignancies, including acute myeloid leukemia, chronic myeloid leukemia in blast crisis, myelodysplastic syndrome, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and bilineage/biphenotypic leukemia. NUP98 gene fusions typically encode a fusion protein that retains the amino terminus of NUP98; in this context, it is important to note that several recent studies have demonstrated that the amino-terminal portion of NUP98 exhibits transcription activation potential. Approximately half of the NUP98 fusion partners encode homeodomain proteins, and at least 5 NUP98 fusions involve known histone-modifying genes. Several of the NUP98 fusions, including NUP98-homeobox (HOX)A9, NUP98-HOXD13, and NUP98-JARID1A, have been used to generate animal models of both lymphoid and myeloid malignancy; these models typically up-regulate HOXA cluster genes, including HOXA5, HOXA7, HOXA9, and HOXA10. In addition, several of the NUP98 fusion proteins have been shown to inhibit differentiation of hematopoietic precursors and to increase self-renewal of hematopoietic stem or progenitor cells, providing a potential mechanism for malignant transformation.
Project description:Chromosomal translocations involving the nucleoporin NUP98 have been described in several hematopoietic malignancies, in particular acute myeloid leukemia (AML). In the resulting chimeric proteins, Nup98's N-terminal region is fused to the C-terminal region of about 30 different partners, including homeodomain (HD) transcription factors. While transcriptional targets of distinct Nup98 chimeras related to immortalization are relatively well described, little is known about other potential cellular effects of these fusion proteins. By comparing the sub-nuclear localization of a large number of Nup98 fusions with HD and non-HD partners throughout the cell cycle we found that while all Nup98 chimeras were nuclear during interphase, only Nup98-HD fusion proteins exhibited a characteristic speckled appearance. During mitosis, only Nup98-HD fusions were concentrated on chromosomes. Despite the difference in localization, all tested Nup98 chimera provoked morphological alterations in the nuclear envelope (NE), in particular affecting the nuclear lamina and the lamina-associated polypeptide 2? (LAP2?). Importantly, such aberrations were not only observed in transiently transfected HeLa cells but also in mouse bone marrow cells immortalized by Nup98 fusions and in cells derived from leukemia patients harboring Nup98 fusions. Our findings unravel Nup98 fusion-associated NE alterations that may contribute to leukemogenesis.
Project description:Recent studies have shown that a subset of nucleoporins (Nups) can detach from the nuclear pore complex and move into the nuclear interior to regulate transcription. One such dynamic Nup, called Nup98, has been implicated in gene activation in healthy cells and has been shown to drive leukemogenesis when mutated in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Here we show that in hematopoietic cells, Nup98 binds predominantly to transcription start sites to recruit the Wdr82-Set1A/COMPASS (complex of proteins associated with Set1) complex, which is required for deposition of the histone 3 Lys4 trimethyl (H3K4me3)-activating mark. Depletion of Nup98 or Wdr82 abolishes Set1A recruitment to chromatin and subsequently ablates H3K4me3 at adjacent promoters. Furthermore, expression of a Nup98 fusion protein implicated in aggressive AML causes mislocalization of H3K4me3 at abnormal regions and up-regulation of associated genes. Our findings establish a function of Nup98 in hematopoietic gene activation and provide mechanistic insight into which Nup98 leukemic fusion proteins promote AML.
Project description:NUP98-NSD1-positive acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a poor prognostic subgroup that is frequently diagnosed in pediatric cytogenetically normal AML. NUP98-NSD1-positive AML often carries additional mutations in genes including FLT3, NRAS, WT1, and MYC. The purpose of our study was to characterize the cooperative potential of the fusion and its associated Neuroblastoma rat sarcoma (NRAS) mutation. By constitutively expressing NUP98-NSD1 and NRASG12D in a syngeneic mouse model and using a patient-derived xenograft (PDX) model from a NUP98-NSD1-positive AML patient, we evaluated the functional role of these genes and tested a novel siRNA formulation that inhibits the oncogenic driver NUP98-NSD1. NUP98-NSD1 transformed murine bone marrow (BM) cells in vitro and induced AML in vivo. While NRASG12D expression was insufficient to transform cells alone, co-expression of NUP98-NSD1 and NRASG12D enhanced the leukemogenicity of NUP98-NSD1. We developed a NUP98-NSD1-targeting siRNA/lipid nanoparticle formulation that significantly prolonged the survival of the PDX mice. Our study demonstrates that mutated NRAS cooperates with NUP98-NSD1 and shows that direct targeting of the fusion can be exploited as a novel treatment strategy in NUP98-NSD1-positive AML patients.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The NUP98 gene is involved in multiple rearrangements in haematological malignancy. The leukemic cells in an acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patient with a t(9;11)(p22;p15) were recently shown to have a fusion between the NUP98 gene and the LEDGF gene but it was not demonstrated that this fusion was recurrent in other leukaemia patients with the same translocation. RESULTS:We used RT-PCR to analyse the leukemic cells from an AML patient who presented with a cytogenetically identical translocation as the sole chromosomal abnormality. A NUP98-LEDGF fusion transcript was observed and confirmed by sequencing. The reciprocal transcript was also observed. The fusion transcript was not detectable during remission and recurred at relapse. The breakpoints in the NUP98 and LEDGF genes were different to those previously reported. The NUP98 breakpoint occurs in the intron between exons 8 and 9. It is the most 5' breakpoint reported in a translocation involving the NUP98 gene. All of the LEDGF gene is included in the fusion except for exon 1 which codes for the first 24 amino terminal amino acids. CONCLUSIONS:Our results show that fusion of the NUP98 and LEDGF genes is a new recurrent translocation in AML.
Project description:We assessed lineage involvement by NUP98 translocations in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL). Single cell analysis by FICTION (Fluorescence Immunophenotype and Interphase Cytogenetics as a Tool for Investigation of Neoplasms) showed that NUP98-translocations with various partners, i.e. NSD1, DDX10, RAP1GDS1, and LNP1, always affected a CD34+/CD133+ hematopoietic precursor. Interestingly, in MDS/AML myelomonocytes, erythroid cells, B- and T- lymphocytes belonged to the abnormal clone, while in T-ALL only CD7+/CD3+ cells were involved. The partner did not appear to play a major role in determining the leukemia phenotype as shown in AML and T-ALL with the same NUP98-RAP1GDS1 fusion. Additional hits, namely mutations of FLT3 and CEBPA in MDS/AML and mutation of NOTCH1 plus MYB duplication in T-ALL, were identified in leukemias with, respectively, myeloid or T-lymphoid phenotype. Affymetrix SNP arrays were performed according to the manufacturer's directions on DNA extracted from cryopreserved diagnostic bone marrow or peripheral blood samples. Copy number and Copy neutral LOH analysis of with Affymetrix Cytogenetic 2.7 and Cytoscan HD SNP arrays was performed on 6 NUP98 rearranged leukemias.
Project description:BACKGROUND: NUP98 gene rearrangements have been reported in acute myeloid leukemia, giving rise to fusion proteins that seem to function as aberrant transcription factors, and are thought to be associated with poor prognosis. FINDINGS: A patient with treatment-related acute myeloid leukemia presented a t(3;11)(p11;p15) as the only cytogenetic abnormality. FISH and molecular genetic analyses identified a class 1 homeobox gene, POU1F1, located on chromosome 3p11, as the fusion partner of NUP98. In addition, we have found that the patient harbored an FLT3-ITD mutation, which most likely collaborated with the NUP98-POU1F1 fusion gene in malignant transformation. CONCLUSIONS: We have identified POU1F1 as the NUP98 fusion partner in therapy-related AML with a t(3;11)(p11;p15). This is the first POU family member identified as a fusion partner in human cancer.