RNA sequencing-based identification of potential targets in acute myeloid leukemia: A case report.
ABSTRACT: Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) refers to heterogenous types of blood cancer which possess a complicated genomic landscape, and multiple novel mutational alterations are frequently being reported. Herein, a case report of a 37-year old AML patient is presented, who was diagnosed following laboratory investigation after admission. The patient had thrombocytopenia, and three consecutive blast counts of 40, 30 and 41%, respectively. A blood sample was collected for whole-genome RNA sequencing to understand the transcriptomic profile at the time of diagnosis and compared with a matched female control. Gene expression was quantified using the RSEM software package. Bioinformatics analysis revealed a significant number of differentially expressed genes in the patient, suggesting a marked change in the transcriptomic landscape in this patient. By mining the bioinformatics data and screening the highly expressed genes with ?80% probability of gene expression, four novel genes were highlighted that may serve as potential future targets in AML patients; Rh associated glycoprotein, succinate receptor 1, transmembrane-4 L-six family member-1 and ADGRA3, although further validation of their value is required.
Project description:Identification of key drivers and new therapeutic targets is important given the poor prognosis for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients, particularly those ineligible for surgical resection or liver transplant. However, the approach to identify such driver genes is facing significant challenges due to the genomically heterogenous nature of HCC. Here we tested whether the integrative genomic profiling of a well-defined HCC subset that is classified by an extreme EpCAM(+) AFP(+) gene expression signature and associated with poor prognosis, all attributes of a stem cell-like phenotype, could uncover survival-related driver genes in HCC. Following transcriptomic analysis of the well-defined HCC cases, a Gene Set Enrichment Analysis coupled with genomic copy number alteration assessment revealed that YY1-associated protein 1 (YY1AP1) is a critical oncoprotein specifically activated in EpCAM(+) AFP(+) HCC. YY1AP1 silencing eliminates oncogene addiction by altering the chromatin landscape and triggering massive apoptosis in vitro and tumor suppression in vivo. YY1AP1 expression promotes HCC proliferation and is required for the maintenance of stem cell features. We revealed that YY1AP1 cooperates with YY1 to alter the chromatin landscape and activate transcription of stemness regulators. Thus YY1AP1 may serve as a key molecular target for EpCAM(+) AFP(+) HCC subtype. Our results demonstrate the feasibility and power of a new strategy by utilizing well-defined patient samples and integrative genomics to uncover critical pathways linked to HCC subtypes with prognostic impact.
Project description:Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a molecularly heterogeneous hematological malignancy with variable response to treatment. Recurring cytogenetic abnormalities and molecular lesions identify AML patient subgroups with different survival probabilities; however, 50?70% of AML cases harbor either normal or risk-indeterminate karyotypes. The discovery of better biomarkers of clinical success and failure is therefore necessary to inform tailored therapeutic decisions. Harnessing the immune system against cancer with programmed death-1 (PD-1)-directed immune checkpoint blockade (ICB) and other immunotherapy agents is an effective therapeutic option for several advanced malignancies. However, durable responses have been observed in only a minority of patients, highlighting the need to gain insights into the molecular features that predict response and to also develop more effective and rational combination therapies that address mechanisms of immune evasion and resistance. We will review the state of knowledge of the immune landscape of AML and identify the broad opportunity to further explore this incompletely characterized space. Multiplexed, spatially-resolved immunohistochemistry, flow cytometry/mass cytometry, proteomic and transcriptomic approaches are advancing our understanding of the complexity of AML-immune interactions and are expected to support the design and expedite the delivery of personalized immunotherapy clinical trials.
Project description:In order to detect the transcriptomic differences during chemotherapy treatment of de novo AML, we adopted massively parallel pyrosequencing of mRNAs (RNA-seq) using blood tissues of an patient with AML (FAB subtype M2) in tumor stage and remission stage. We obtained a total of 34.6 and 30.8 million paired reads from the two samples. The RNA-seq data derived from the sample illustrated the differentially expression genes between the two stages. Blood samples of an AML-M2 patient in two stages examined: primary tumor and chemotherapy induced remission.
Project description:Although targeting of cell metabolism is a promising therapeutic strategy in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), metabolic dependencies are largely unexplored. We aimed to classify AML patients based on their metabolic landscape and map connections between metabolic and genomic profiles. Combined serum and urine metabolomics improved AML characterization compared with individual biofluid analysis. At intracellular level, AML displayed dysregulated amino acid, nucleotide, lipid, and bioenergetic metabolism. The integration of intracellular and biofluid metabolomics provided a map of alterations in the metabolism of polyamine, purine, keton bodies and polyunsaturated fatty acids and tricarboxylic acid cycle. The intracellular metabolome distinguished three AML clusters, correlating with distinct genomic profiles: NPM1-mutated(mut), chromatin/spliceosome-mut and TP53-mut/aneuploid AML that were confirmed by biofluid analysis. Interestingly, integrated genomic-metabolic profiles defined two subgroups of NPM1-mut AML. One was enriched for mutations in cohesin/DNA damage-related genes (NPM1/cohesin-mut AML) and showed increased serum choline + trimethylamine-N-oxide and leucine, higher mutation load, transcriptomic signatures of reduced inflammatory status and better ex-vivo response to EGFR and MET inhibition. The transcriptional differences of enzyme-encoding genes between NPM1/cohesin-mut and NPM1-mut allowed in silico modeling of intracellular metabolic perturbations. This approach predicted alterations in NAD and purine metabolism in NPM1/cohesin-mut AML that suggest potential vulnerabilities, worthy of being therapeutically explored.
Project description:Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is the most common acute leukemia in adults. Leukemia stem cells (LSCs) drive the initiation and perpetuation of AML, are quantifiably associated with worse clinical outcomes, and often persist after conventional chemotherapy resulting in relapse1-5. In this report, we show that treatment of older patients with AML with the B cell lymphoma 2 (BCL-2) inhibitor venetoclax in combination with azacitidine results in deep and durable remissions and is superior to conventional treatments. We hypothesized that these promising clinical results were due to targeting LSCs. Analysis of LSCs from patients undergoing treatment with venetoclax?+?azacitidine showed disruption of the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle manifested by decreased ?-ketoglutarate and increased succinate levels, suggesting inhibition of electron transport chain complex II. In vitro modeling confirmed inhibition of complex II via reduced glutathionylation of succinate dehydrogenase. These metabolic perturbations suppress oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS), which efficiently and selectively targets LSCs. Our findings show for the first time that a therapeutic intervention can eradicate LSCs in patients with AML by disrupting the metabolic machinery driving energy metabolism, resulting in promising clinical activity in a patient population with historically poor outcomes.
Project description:Type-2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) is a chronic metabolic disorder, associated with an increased risk of developing solid tumors and hematological malignancies, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML). However, the genetic background underlying this predisposition remains elusive. We herein aimed at the exploration of the genetic variants, related transcriptomic changes and disturbances in metabolic pathways shared by T2D and AML, utilizing bioinformatics tools and repositories, as well as publicly available clinical datasets. Our approach revealed that rs11709077 and rs1801282, on <i>PPARG</i>, rs11108094 on <i>USP44</i>, rs6685701 on <i>RPS6KA1</i> and rs7929543 on <i>AC118942.1</i> comprise common SNPs susceptible to the two diseases and, together with 64 other co-inherited proxy SNPs, may affect the expression patterns of metabolic genes, such as <i>USP44</i>, <i>METAP2</i>, <i>PPARG</i>, <i>TIMP4</i> and <i>RPS6KA1</i>, in adipose tissue, skeletal muscle, liver, pancreas and whole blood. Most importantly, a set of 86 AML/T2D common susceptibility genes was found to be significantly associated with metabolic cellular processes, including purine, pyrimidine, and choline metabolism, as well as insulin, AMPK, mTOR and PI<sub>3</sub>K signaling. Moreover, it was revealed that the whole blood of AML patients exhibits deregulated expression of certain T2D-related genes. Our findings support the existence of common metabolic perturbations in AML and T2D that may account for the increased risk for AML in T2D patients. Future studies may focus on the elucidation of these pathogenetic mechanisms in AML/T2D patients, as well as on the assessment of certain susceptibility variants and genes as potential biomarkers for AML development in the setting of T2D. Detection of shared therapeutic molecular targets may enforce the need for repurposing metabolic drugs in the therapeutic management of AML.
Project description:Secondary acute myeloid leukemia (sAML) is a high-risk AML evolving from heterogenous prior hematological disorders. Compared to de novo AML, sAML has even worse responses to current therapy and thus is associated with lower remission rates, inferior overall survival (OS) and higher relapse rates. Many efforts have been devoted to improving the overall but with limited success, and novel strategy is thus highly needed. Recent research has identified that CLL1 is highly expressed on AML leukemia stem cells and blasts cells but not on normal hematopoietic stem cells. In this case report, we treated a secondary AML patient with anti -CLL1 CAR-T therapy and achieved morphological, immunophenotypic and molecular complete remission for over 10 months. Although only one successful case is presented here, the anti-CLL1 CAR T-cells should be considered as another treatment option for secondary AML in the future.
Project description:Chip-chip data from primary human AML patient blasts, normal CD34+ HSCs, normal neutrophils and normal T cells with H3K9 and H3K27 antibodies. Gene expression profiling from primary human AML patient blasts and CD34+ normal cells. Analysis of the chromatin landscape of the ERG locus using H3K9 and H3K27 as markers of euchromatin and heterochromatin respectively. Analysis of ERG expression in AML patients with normal CD34+ HSCs as control. Correlation of the activity of a stem cell enhancer at the ERG locus in AML primary patient blasts with their transcriptome and clinical outcome data.
Project description:Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a clinically and genetically heterogenous malignancy of myeloid progenitor cells that affects patients of all ages. Despite decades of research and improvement in overall outcomes, standard therapy remains ineffective for certain subtypes of AML. Current treatment is intensive and leads to a number of secondary effects with varying results by patient population. Due to the high cost of discovery and an unmet need for new targeted therapies that are well tolerated, alternative drug development strategies have become increasingly attractive. Repurposing existing drugs is one approach to identify new therapies with fewer financial and regulatory hurdles. In this review, we provide an overview of previously U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved non-chemotherapy drugs under investigation for the treatment of AML.
Project description:Over the past decades, genetic advances have allowed a more precise molecular characterization of AML with the identification of novel oncogenes and tumor suppressors as part of a comprehensive AML molecular landscape. Recent advances in genetic sequencing tools also enabled a better understanding of AML leukemogenesis from the preleukemic state to posttherapy relapse. These advances resulted in direct clinical implications with the definition of molecular prognosis classifications, the development of treatment recommendations based on minimal residual disease (MRD) measurement and the discovery of novel targeted therapies, ultimately improving AML patients' overall survival. The more recent development of functional genomic studies, pushed by novel molecular biology technologies (short hairpin RNA (shRNA) and CRISPR-Cas9) and bioinformatics tools design on one hand, along with the engineering of humanized physiologically relevant animal models on the other hand, have opened a new genomics era resulting in a greater knowledge of AML physiopathology. Combining descriptive and functional genomics will undoubtedly open the road for an AML cure within the next decades.