Myelodysplastic Syndromes with Isolated del(5q): Value of Molecular Alterations for Diagnostic and Prognostic AssessmentCancers 10 Nov 2022, .
Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are a group of clonal hematological neoplasms characterized by ineffective hematopoiesis in one or more bone marrow cell lineages. Consequently, patients present with variable degrees of cytopenia and dysplasia. These characteristics constitute the basis for the World Health Organization (WHO) classification criteria of MDS, among other parameters, for the current prognostic scoring system. Although nearly half of newly diagnosed patients present a cytogenetic alteration, and almost 90% of them harbor at least one somatic mutation, MDS with isolated del(5q) constitutes the only subtype clearly defined by a cytogenetic alteration. The results of several clinical studies and the advances of new technologies have allowed a better understanding of the biological basis of this disease. Therefore, since the first report of the “5q- syndrome” in 1974, changes and refinements have been made in the definition and the characteristics of the patients with MDS and del(5q). Moreover, specific genetic alterations have been found to be associated with the prognosis and response to treatments. The aim of this review is to summarize the current knowledge of the molecular background of MDS with isolated del(5q), focusing on the clinical and prognostic relevance of cytogenetic alterations and somatic mutations.
A structural biology community assessment of AlphaFold2 applicationsNature Structural & Molecular Biology 7 Nov 2022, .
Most proteins fold into 3D structures that determine how they function and orchestrate the biological processes of the cell. Recent developments in computational methods for protein structure predictions have reached the accuracy of experimentally determined models. Although this has been independently verified, the implementation of these methods across structural-biology applications remains to be tested. Here, we evaluate the use of AlphaFold2 (AF2) predictions in the study of characteristic structural elements; the impact of missense variants; function and ligand binding site predictions; modeling of interactions; and modeling of experimental structural data. For 11 proteomes, an average of 25% additional residues can be confidently modeled when compared with homology modeling, identifying structural features rarely seen in the Protein Data Bank. AF2-based predictions of protein disorder and complexes surpass dedicated tools, and AF2 models can be used across diverse applications equally well compared with experimentally determined structures, when the confidence metrics are critically considered. In summary, we find that these advances are likely to have a transformative impact in structural biology and broader life-science research.
Genomics improves risk stratification of adults with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia patients enrolled in measurable residual disease-oriented trials.Haematologica 3 Nov 2022, . Epub 3 Nov 2022
Genetic information has been crucial to understand the pathogenesis of T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) at diagnosis and at relapse, but still nowadays has a limited value in a clinical context. Few genetic markers are associated with the outcome of T-ALL patients, independently of measurable residual disease (MRD) status after therapy. In addition, the prognostic relevance of genetic features may be modulated by the specific treatment used. We analyzed the genetic profile of 145 T-ALL patients by targeted deep sequencing. Genomic information was integrated with the clinical-biological and survival data of a subset of 116 adult patients enrolled in two consecutive MRD-oriented trials of the Spanish PETHEMA (Programa Español de Tratamientos en Hematología) group. Genetic analysis revealed a mutational profile defined by DNMT3A/ N/KRAS/ MSH2/ U2AF1 gene mutations that identified refractory/resistant patients. Mutations in the DMNT3A gene were also found in the nonleukemic cell fraction of patients with T-ALL, revealing a possible mutational-driven clonal hematopoiesis event to prime T-ALL in elderly. The prognostic impact of this adverse genetic profile was independent of MRD status on day +35 of induction therapy. The combined WOG signature and MRD on day +35 allowed risk-stratification of T-ALL into standard or high-risk groups with significantly different 5-year overall survival (OS) (95% confidence interval [CI]) of 52% (37-67 %) and 17% (1-33%), respectively. These results confirm the relevance of the tumor genetic profile in predicting patient outcome in adult T-ALL and highlight the need for novel gene-targeted chemotherapeutic schedules to improve the OS of poor-prognosis T-ALL patients.Más información
Different Gene Sets Are Associated With Azacitidine Response In Vitro Versus in Myelodysplastic Syndrome PatientsHemaSphere 1 Nov 2022, 6 (11) .
Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are a heterogeneous group of hematopoietic disorders characterized by dysplasia, ineffective hematopoiesis, and predisposition to secondary acute myeloid leukemias (sAML). Azacitidine (AZA) is the standard care for high-risk MDS patients not eligible for allogenic bone marrow transplantation. However, only half of the patients respond to AZA and eventually all patients relapse. Response-predicting biomarkers and combinatorial drugs targets enhancing therapy response and its duration are needed. Here, we have taken a dual approach. First, we have evaluated genes encoding chromatin regulators for their capacity to modulate AZA response. We were able to validate several genes, whose genetic inhibition affected the cellular AZA response, including 4 genes encoding components of Imitation SWItch chromatin remodeling complex pointing toward a specific function and co-vulnerability. Second, we have used a classical cohort analysis approach measuring the expression of a gene panel in bone marrow samples from 36 MDS patients subsequently receiving AZA. The gene panel included the identified AZA modulators, genes known to be involved in AZA metabolism and previously identified candidate modulators. In addition to confirming a number of previously made observations, we were able to identify several new associations, such as NSUN3 that correlated with increased overall survival. Taken together, we have identified a number of genes associated with AZA response in vitro and in patients. These groups of genes are largely nonoverlapping suggesting that different gene sets need to be exploited for the development of combinatorial drug targets and response-predicting biomarkers.
Vitamin C enhances NF-κB-driven epigenomic reprogramming and boosts the immunogenic properties of dendritic cells.Nucleic Acids Res 28 Oct 2022, . Epub 28 Oct 2022
Dendritic cells (DCs), the most potent antigen-presenting cells, are necessary for effective activation of naïve T cells. DCs' immunological properties are modulated in response to various stimuli. Active DNA demethylation is crucial for DC differentiation and function. Vitamin C, a known cofactor of ten-eleven translocation (TET) enzymes, drives active demethylation. Vitamin C has recently emerged as a promising adjuvant for several types of cancer; however, its effects on human immune cells are poorly understood. In this study, we investigate the epigenomic and transcriptomic reprogramming orchestrated by vitamin C in monocyte-derived DC differentiation and maturation. Vitamin C triggers extensive demethylation at NF-κB/p65 binding sites, together with concordant upregulation of antigen-presentation and immune response-related genes during DC maturation. p65 interacts with TET2 and mediates the aforementioned vitamin C-mediated changes, as demonstrated by pharmacological inhibition. Moreover, vitamin C increases TNFβ production in DCs through NF-κB, in concordance with the upregulation of its coding gene and the demethylation of adjacent CpGs. Finally, vitamin C enhances DC's ability to stimulate the proliferation of autologous antigen-specific T cells. We propose that vitamin C could potentially improve monocyte-derived DC-based cell therapies.Más información