Ingénieur de recherche
The PIP (prolactin-inducible protein) gene has been shown to be expressed in breast cancers, with contradictory results concerning its implication. As both the physiological role and the molecular pathways in which PIP is involved are poorly understood, we conducted combined gene expression profiling and network analysis studies on selected breast cancer cell lines presenting distinct PIP expression levels and hormonal receptor status, to explore the functional and regulatory network of PIP co-modulated genes.
PRINCIPAL FINDINGS :
Microarray analysis allowed identification of genes co-modulated with PIP independently of modulations resulting from hormonal treatment or cell line heterogeneity. Relevant clusters of genes that can discriminate between [PIP+] and [PIP-] cells were identified. Functional and regulatory network analyses based on a knowledge database revealed a master network of PIP co-modulated genes, including many interconnecting oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes, half of which were detected as differentially expressed through high-precision measurements. The network identified appears associated with an inhibition of proliferation coupled with an increase of apoptosis and an enhancement of cell adhesion in breast cancer cell lines, and contains many genes with a STAT5 regulatory motif in their promoters.
Our global exploratory approach identified biological pathways modulated along with PIP expression, providing further support for its good prognostic value of disease-free survival in breast cancer. Moreover, our data pointed to the importance of a regulatory subnetwork associated with PIP expression in which STAT5 appears as a potential transcriptional regulator
Here we report the new features and improvements in our latest release of the H-Invitational Database (H-InvDB ; http://www.h-invitational.jp/), a comprehensive annotation resource for human genes and transcripts. H-InvDB, originally developed as an integrated database of the human transcriptome based on extensive annotation of large sets of full-length cDNA (FLcDNA) clones, now provides annotation for 120 558 human mRNAs extracted from the International Nucleotide Sequence Databases (INSD), in addition to 54 978 human FLcDNAs, in the latest release H-InvDB_4.6. We mapped those human transcripts onto the human genome sequences (NCBI build 36.1) and determined 34 699 human gene clusters, which could define 34 057 (98.1%) protein-coding and 642 (1.9%) non-protein-coding loci ; 858 (2.5%) transcribed loci overlapped with predicted pseudogenes. For all these transcripts and genes, we provide comprehensive annotation including gene structures, gene functions, alternative splicing variants, functional non-protein-coding RNAs, functional domains, predicted sub cellular localizations, metabolic pathways, predictions of protein 3D structure, mapping of SNPs and microsatellite repeat motifs, co-localization with orphan diseases, gene expression profiles, orthologous genes, protein-protein interactions (PPI) and annotation for gene families. The current H-InvDB annotation resources consist of two main views : Transcript view and Locus view and eight sub-databases : the DiseaseInfo Viewer, H-ANGEL, the Clustering Viewer, G-integra, the TOPO Viewer, Evola, the PPI view and the Gene family/group.
The molecular mechanisms underlying innate tumor drug resistance, a major obstacle to successful cancer therapy, remain poorly understood. In colorectal cancer (CRC), molecular studies have focused on drug-selected tumor cell lines or individual candidate genes using samples derived from patients already treated with drugs, so that very little data are available prior to drug treatment.
Transcriptional profiles of clinical samples collected from CRC patients prior to their exposure to a combined chemotherapy of folinic acid, 5-fluorouracil and irinotecan were established using microarrays. Vigilant experimental design, power simulations and robust statistics were used to restrain the rates of false negative and false positive hybridizations, allowing successful discrimination between drug resistance and sensitivity states with restricted sampling. A list of 679 genes was established that intrinsically differentiates, for the first time prior to drug exposure, subsequently diagnosed chemo-sensitive and resistant patients. Independent biological validation performed through quantitative PCR confirmed the expression pattern on two additional patients. Careful annotation of interconnected functional networks provided a unique representation of the cellular states underlying drug responses.
Molecular interaction networks are described that provide a solid foundation on which to anchor working hypotheses about mechanisms underlying in vivo innate tumor drug responses. These broad-spectrum cellular signatures represent a starting point from which by-pass chemotherapy schemes, targeting simultaneously several of the molecular mechanisms involved, may be developed for critical therapeutic intervention in CRC patients. The demonstrated power of this research strategy makes it generally applicable to other physiological and pathological situations.
The Human Anatomic Gene Expression Library (H-ANGEL) is a resource for information concerning the anatomical distribution and expression of human gene transcripts. The tool contains protein expression data from multiple platforms that has been associated with both manually annotated full-length cDNAs from H-InvDB and RefSeq sequences. Of the H-Inv predicted genes, 18 897 have associated expression data generated by at least one platform. H-ANGEL utilizes categorized mRNA expression data from both publicly available and proprietary sources. It incorporates data generated by three types of methods from seven different platforms. The data are provided to the user in the form of a web-based viewer with numerous query options. H-ANGEL is updated with each new release of cDNA and genome sequence build. In future editions, we will incorporate the capability for expression data updates from existing and new platforms. H-ANGEL is accessible at http://www.jbirc.aist.go.jp/hinv/h-angel/.
In this study, we have used high density cDNA arrays to assess age-related changes in gene expression in the myogenic program of human satellite cells and to elucidate modifications in differentiation capacity that could occur throughout in vitro cellular aging. We have screened a collection of 2016 clones from a human skeletal muscle 3’-end cDNA library in order to investigate variations in the myogenic program of myotubes formed by the differentiation of myoblasts of individuals with different ages (5 days old, 52 years old and 79 years old) and induced to differentiate at different stages of their lifespan (early proliferation, presenescence and senescence). Although our analysis has not been able to underline specific changes in the expression of genes encoding proteins involved in muscle structure and/or function, we have demonstrated an age-related induction of genes involved in stress response and a down-regulation of genes involved both in mitochondrial electron transport/ATP synthase and in glycolysis/TCA cycle. From this global approach of post-mitotic cell aging, we have identified 2 potential new markers of presenescence for human myotubes, both strongly linked to carbohydrate metabolism, which could be useful in developing therapeutic strategies.
While it is universally accepted that intact RNA constitutes the best representation of the steady-state of transcription, there is no gold standard to define RNA quality prior to gene expression analysis. In this report, we evaluated the reliability of conventional methods for RNA quality assessment including UV spectroscopy and 28S:18S area ratios, and demonstrated their inconsistency. We then used two new freely available classifiers, the Degradometer and RIN systems, to produce user-independent RNA quality metrics, based on analysis of microcapillary electrophoresis traces. Both provided highly informative and valuable data and the results were found highly correlated, while the RIN system gave more reliable data. The relevance of the RNA quality metrics for assessment of gene expression differences was tested by Q-PCR, revealing a significant decline of the relative expression of genes in RNA samples of disparate quality, while samples of similar, even poor integrity were found highly comparable. We discuss the consequences of these observations to minimize artifactual detection of false positive and negative differential expression due to RNA integrity differences, and propose a scheme for the development of a standard operational procedure, with optional registration of RNA integrity metrics in public repositories of gene expression data.
Understanding the complexity and dynamics of cancer cells in response to effective therapy requires hypothesis-driven, quantitative, and high-throughput measurement of genes and proteins at both spatial and temporal levels. This study was designed to gain insights into molecular networks underlying the clinical synergy between retinoic acid (RA) and arsenic trioxide (ATO) in acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), which results in a high-quality disease-free survival in most patients after consolidation with conventional chemotherapy. We have applied an approach integrating cDNA microarray, 2D gel electrophoresis with MS, and methods of computational biology to study the effects on APL cell line NB4 treated with RA, ATO, and the combination of the two agents and collected in a time series. Numerous features were revealed that indicated the coordinated regulation of molecular networks from various aspects of granulocytic differentiation and apoptosis at the transcriptome and proteome levels. These features include an array of transcription factors and cofactors, activation of calcium signaling, stimulation of the IFN pathway, activation of the proteasome system, degradation of the PML-RARalpha oncoprotein, restoration of the nuclear body, cell-cycle arrest, and gain of apoptotic potential. Hence, this investigation has provided not only a detailed understanding of the combined therapeutic effects of RA/ATO in APL but also a road map to approach hematopoietic malignancies at the systems level.
A treatment strategy that combines arsenic trioxide (ATO) with the tyrosine kinase inhibitor imatinib mesylate (STI571, Gleevec) appears to induce markedly more cell apoptosis than imatinib mesylate alone in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). To understand the mechanisms underlying the synergistic/additive action of these agents, we applied cDNA microarrays, component plane presentation integrated self-organizing map (CPP-SOM), and methods of protein biochemistry to study cell apoptosis induced by imatinib mesylate, ATO, and the combination of the 2 agents in the CML cell line K562. Numerous features with temporospatial relationships were revealed, indicating the coordinated regulation of molecular networks from various aspects of proapoptotic and apoptotic activities in CML. Imatinib mesylate appears to induce mainly the intrinsic pathway of cell apoptosis, whereas ATO induces the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress-mediated pathway of cell apoptosis, and the combination of the 2 agents seems to more effectively induce the intrinsic, extrinsic, and ER stress-mediated pathways of cell apoptosis, which results in a more effective and efficient induction of programmed cell death in K562 cells. This finding appears to be supported also by data derived from bone marrow cells of 2 patients with CML, one in chronic phase and the other in blast-crisis phase of the disease.
Defects in nucleotide excision repair have been shown to be associated with the photosensitive form of the disorder trichothiodystrophy (TTD). Most repair-deficient TTD patients are mutated in the XPD gene, a subunit of the transcription factor TFIIH. Knowledge of the kinetics and efficiency of repair of the two major UV-induced photolesions in TTD is critical to understand the role of unrepaired lesions in the process of carcinogenesis and explain the absence of enhanced skin cancer incidence in TTD patients contrarily to the xeroderma pigmentosum D patients. In this study, we used different approaches to quantify repair of UV-induced cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPD) and pyrimidine (6-4) pyrimidone photoproducts (6-4PP) at the gene and the genome overall level. In cells of two TTD patients, repair of CPD and 6-4PP was reduced compared with normal human cells, but the reduction was more severe in confluent cells than in exponentially growing cells. Moreover, the impairment of repair was more drastic for CPD than 6-4PP. Most notably, exponentially growing TTD cells displayed complete repair 6-4PP over a broad dose range, albeit at a reduced rate compared with normal cells. Strand-specific analysis of CPD repair in a transcriptional active gene revealed that TTD cells were capable to perform transcription-coupled repair. Taken together, the data suggest that efficient repair of 6-4PP in dividing TTD cells in concert with transcription-coupled repair might account for the absence of increased skin carcinogenesis in TTD patients
Porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of post-weaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS) in swine. As PCV2 displays significant homology with PCV1 (a non-pathogenic virus) at the nucleotide and amino-acid level, a discriminative antigen is needed for specific serological diagnosis. The ORF2-encoded capsid protein from PCV2 was used to develop an indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). GST-fused capsid protein from PCV2 and GST alone (both expressed in recombinant baculovirus-infected cells) were used as antigens for serodiagnosis. The specificity of the ELISA for detection of PCV2 antibodies was demonstrated in sera from pigs experimentally infected with PCV1, PCV2 and other swine viruses. The semi-quantitative nature of the test was evaluated versus an immunoperoxidase monolayer assay (IPMA). The ELISA was performed on 322 sera from pigs in eight Brittany herds and compared with IPMA. The sensitivity (98.2%) and specificity (94.5%) of this test were considered suitable for individual serological detection. High PCV2 seroprevalence was found in sows and pigs at the end of the growth phase (18-19 weeks) in all eight herds. The seroprevalence in piglets (11-17 weeks) was statistically correlated with clinical symptoms of PMWS (93% in affected versus 54%, in non-affected farms). A cohort study performed in PMWS-free farms showed that 57% of piglets exhibited active seroconversion after 13 weeks, indicating that PCV2 infection occurred earlier in PMWS-affected piglets
It is well established that biological aging is associated with functional deficits at the cellular, tissue, organ and system levels, but the molecular mechanisms that control lifespan and age-related phenotypes are still not well understood. In order to investigate the molecular mechanisms underlying myoblast aging, we have used quantitative hybridization of a cDNA array of 2016 clones from a human skeletal muscle 3’-end cDNA library to monitor gene expression patterns of myoblasts of individuals with different ages (5 days old, 52 years old and 79 years old) and at different stages of proliferation (early, presenescent and senescent). We have shown that expression profiles in satellite cells vary with donor age, with an up-regulation of genes involved in muscle structure, muscle differentiation and in metabolism in the newborn, and a down-regulation of genes involved in protein renewal in adults. We have also observed that myoblasts isolated from subjects of different ages have typical expression profiles at the beginning of their proliferative lifespan. However, this phenomenon progressively disappears as the cells approach senescence. In addition, even though some of the modifications are similar to those observed in other cell types, we have observed that many changes in gene expression are characteristic of the myoblasts, confirming the hypothesis that the program of replicative senescence is specific for each cell type. Finally, we have identified four potential new markers of presenescence for human myoblasts, which could be useful in developing therapeutic strategies
Ceramide is important in many cell responses, such as proliferation, differentiation, growth arrest and apoptosis. Elevated ceramide levels have been shown to induce apoptosis in primary neuronal cultures and neuronally differentiated PC 12 cells.
To investigate gene expression during ceramide-dependent apoptosis, we carried out a global study of gene expression in neuronally differentiated PC 12 cells treated with C2-ceramide using an array of 9,120 cDNA clones. Although the criteria adopted for differential hybridization were stringent, modulation of expression of 239 genes was identified during the effector phase of C2-ceramide-induced cell death. We have made an attempt at classifying these genes on the basis of their putative functions, first with respect to known effects of ceramide or ceramide-mediated transduction systems, and then with respect to regulation of cell growth and apoptosis.
Our cell-culture model has enabled us to establish a profile of gene expression during the effector phase of ceramide-mediated cell death. Of the 239 genes that met the criteria for differential hybridization, 10 correspond to genes previously involved in C2-ceramide or TNF-alpha signaling pathways and 20 in neuronal disorders, oncogenesis or more broadly in the regulation of proliferation. The remaining 209 genes, with or without known functions, constitute a pool of genes potentially implicated in the regulation of neuronal cell death.
To correlate brain metabolic status with the molecular events during cerebral ischemia, a cDNA array was performed after positron emission tomography scanning in a model of focal cerebral ischemia in baboons. Cluster analysis for the expression of 74 genes allowed the identification of 4 groups of genes. In each of the distinct groups, the authors observed a marked inflection in the pattern of gene expression when the CMRo was reduced by 48% to 66%. These patterns of coordinated modifications in gene expression could define molecular checkpoints for the development of an ischemic infarct and a molecular definition of the penumbra.
Expression profiles of 5058 human gene transcripts represented by an array of 7451 clones from the first IMAGE Consortium cDNA library from infant brain have been collected by semiquantitative hybridization of the array with complex probes derived by reverse transcription of mRNA from brain and five other human tissues. Twenty-one percent of the clones corresponded to transcripts that could be classified in general categories of low, moderate, or high abundance. These expression profiles were integrated with cDNA clone and sequence clustering and gene mapping information from an upgraded version of the Genexpress Index. For seven gene transcripts found to be transcribed preferentially or specifically in brain, the expression profiles were confirmed by Northern blot analyses of mRNA from eight adult and four fetal tissues, and 15 distinct regions of brain. In four instances, further documentation of the sites of expression was obtained by in situ hybridization of rat-brain tissue sections. A systematic effort was undertaken to further integrate available cytogenetic, genetic, physical, and genic map informations through radiation-hybrid mapping to provide a unique validated map location for each of these genes in relation to the disease map. The resulting Genexpress IMAGE Knowledge Base is illustrated by five examples presented in the printed article with additional data available on a dedicated Web site at the address http://idefix.upr420.vjf.cnrs.fr/EXPR++ +/ welcome.html.
Sequence, gene mapping, and expression data corresponding to 910 genes transcribed in human skeletal muscle have been integrated to form the muscle module of the Genexpress IMAGE Knowledge Base. Based on cDNA array hybridization, a set of 14 transcripts preferentially or specifically expressed in muscle have been selected and characterized in more detail : Their pattern of expression was confirmed by Northern blot analysis ; their structure was further characterized by full-insert cDNA sequencing and cDNA extension ; the map location of the corresponding genes was refined by radiation hybrid mapping. Five of the 14 selected genes appear as interesting positional and functional candidate genes to study in relation with muscle physiology and/or specific orphan muscular pathologies. One example is discussed in more detail. The expression profiling data and the associated Genexpress Index2 entries for the 910 genes and the detailed characterization of the 14 selected transcripts are available from a dedicated Web server at. The database has been organized to provide the users with a working space where they can find curated, annotated, integrated data for their genes of interest. Different navigation routes to exploit the resource are discussed.
Trichothiodystrophy (TTD) is a rare, autosomal recessive disorder characterized by sulfur-deficient brittle hair and nails, mental retardation, impaired sexual development, and ichthyosis. Photosensitivity has been reported in approximately 50% of the cases, but no skin cancer is associated with TTD. Virtually all photosensitive TTD patients have a deficiency in the nucleotide excision repair (NER) of UV-induced DNA damage that is indistinguishable from that of xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) complementation group D (XP-D) patients. DNA repair defects in XP-D are associated with two additional, quite different diseases ; XP, a sun-sensitive and cancer-prone repair disorder, and Cockayne syndrome (CS), a photosensitive condition characterized by physical and mental retardation and wizened facial appearance. One photosensitive TTD case constitutes a new repair-deficient complementation group, TTD-A. Remarkably, both TTD-A and XP-D defects are associated with subunits of TFIIH, a basal transcription factor with a second function in DNA repair. Thus, mutations in TFIIH components may, on top of a repair defect, also cause transcriptional insufficiency, which may explain part of the non-XP clinical features of TTD. Besides XPD and TTDA, the XPB gene product is also part of TFIIH. To date, three patients with the remarkable conjunction of XP and CS but not TTD have been assigned to XP complementation group B (XP-B). Here we present the characterization of the NER defect in two mild TTD patients (TTD6VI and TTD4VI) and confirm the assignment to X-PB. The causative mutation was found to be a single base substitution resulting in a missense mutation (T119P) in a region of the XPB protein completely conserved in yeast, Drosophila, mouse, and man. These findings define a third TTD complementation group, extend the clinical heterogeneity associated with XP-B, stress the exclusive relationship between TTD and mutations in subunits of repair/transcription factor TFIIH, and strongly support the concept of "transcription syndromes."
With the aim to devise a long-term gene therapy protocol for skin cancers in individuals affected by the inherited autosomal recessive xeroderma pigmentosum we transferred the human DNA repair XPA, XPB/ERCC3 and XPC cDNAs, by using the recombinant retroviral vector LXSN, into primary and immortalized fibroblasts obtained from two XP-A, one XP-B (associated with Cockayne’s syndrome) and two XP-C patients. After transduction, the complete correction of DNA repair deficiency and functional expression of the transgenes were monitored by UV survival, unscheduled DNA synthesis and recovery of RNA synthesis, and Western blots. The results show that the recombinant retroviruses are highly efficient vectors to transfer and stably express the human DNA repair genes in XP cells and correct the defect of DNA repair of group A, B and C. With our previous results with XPD/ERCC2, the present work extends further promising issues for the gene therapy strategy for most patients suffering from this cancer-prone syndrome.
To characterize nucleotide excision repair properties of cells from trichothiodystrophy (TTD) patients genetically-related to the xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) group D, TTD skin fibroblasts from two unrelated patients (TTD1VI and TTD2VI) belonging to the TTD/XPD group were transformed with a plasmid containing SV40 large T antigen-coding sequences and some DNA repair properties, such as unscheduled DNA synthesis (UDS), UV-survival, in vitro repair synthesis of cell extracts and reactivation of UV-irradiated reporter plasmid were studied. Results showed that : a) both untransformed and transformed TTD cells present a reduced UV-survival, compared to wild-type cells, but at significantly less reduced levels than XP-D cells ; b) reduced repair activities were detected in both TTD and XP-D transformed cells by using in vitro cell free extract repair and reactivation of UV-irradiated plasmid procedures, and these relative reduced extents correlated with respective UV-survival ; c) surprisingly, near wild-type UDS levels were detected in TTD2VILas transformed cells at different passages after the crisis, suggesting a phenotypic reversion of this transformed cell line ; d) fluoro-cytometric analysis of TTD2VILas cells revealed a strong increase of a cell population containing a DNA amount more than twice as high than that of untransformed cells ; finally, e) when UDS data were normalized to the DNA content in TTD2VILas cells, it appeared that the repair efficiency was only slightly higher than in untransformed cells. This implies that in transformed cells DNA repair properties should be evaluated, taking into account additional parameters. We obtained an immortalized TTD cell line which maintains DNA repair properties similar to those of parental untransformed cells and may be used to characterize the TTD defect at genetic, molecular and biochemical levels.
Nucleotide excision repair (NER)-deficient human cells have been assigned so far to a genetic complementation group by a somatic cell fusion assay and, more recently, by microinjection of cloned DNA repair genes. We describe a new technique, based on the host cell reactivation assay, for the rapid determination of the complementation group of NER-deficient xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), Cockayne’s syndrome (CS) and photosensitive trichothiodystrophy (TTD) human cells by cotransfection of a UV-irradiated reporter plasmid with a second vector containing a cloned repair gene. Expression of the reporter gene, either chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) or luciferase, reflects the DNA repair ability restored by the introduction of the appropriate repair gene. All genetically characterized XP, CS and TTD/XP-D cells tested failed to express the UV-irradiated reporter gene, this reflecting their NER deficiency whereas cotransfection with the repair plasmid expressing a gene specific for the given complementation group increased the enzyme activity to the level reached by normal cells. Selective recovery of both reporter enzyme activities was observed after cotransfection with the XPC gene for the XP17VI cells and with the XPA gene for both XP18VI and XP19VI cells. Using this method, we assigned three new NER-deficient human cells obtained from patients presenting clinical symptoms described as classical XP to either XP group A (XP18VI and XP19VI) and XP group C (XP17VI). Therefore, this technique increases the range of methods now available to determine the complementation group of new NER deficient patients with the advantage, unlike the somatic cell fusion assay or the microinjection procedure, of being simple, rapid, and inexpensive.
To understand the heterogeneity in genetic predisposition to skin cancer in different nucleotide excision repair-deficient human syndromes, we studied repair of cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPDs) and of pyrimidine(6-4)pyrimidone (6-4PP) photoproducts in cells from trichothiodystrophy (TTD) patients. TTD is not associated with increased incidence of skin cancer, although 50% of the patients are photosensitive and carry a defect in the nucleotide excision repair pathway, similar to Xeroderma pigmentosum patients. However, in striking contrast to TTD, Xeroderma pigmentosum is highly prone to cancer. To address this apparent paradox, two types of studies were conducted : (a) reactivation of UV-irradiated plasmids harboring actively transcribed reporter genes, with or without photolyase treatment before transfection of SV40-transformed fibroblasts ; and (b) the kinetics of removal of UV-induced CPDs and 6-4PPs in genomic DNA by immunoblot analysis using lesion-specific mAbs in SV40-transformed and untransformed fibroblasts representative of all genetic TTD complementation groups. Results showed that all cell lines from photosensitive TTD patients efficiently express Cat or luciferase genes in transfected plasmids carrying non-CPD lesions, including 6-4PP, and display wild-type or near-wild-type (50-70% in 3 cell lines) 6-4PP repair in the overall genome after immunoblot analysis. However, CPD lesions (the repair of which is defective in the overall genome) also block the expression of the reporter gene in transfected plasmids. Two cell lines from nonphotosensitive TTD patients showed wild-type levels of repair for both photoproducts in overall genome. A model on the lesion-specific repair in the context of the molecular defect in TTD is proposed. The implication of the defective CPD repair and efficient 6-4PP repair subpathways in cancer prevention in TTD patients is discussed.
Xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) is an autosomal recessive genetic disorder characterized by an increased frequency of skin cancer following minimal sunlight exposure. Cells isolated from XP patients are also hypersensitive to UV rays and UV-like chemicals. This sensitivity is directly related to a defect in the early steps of nucleotide excision repair (NER) of damaged DNA. No efficient treatment is available for this disease and skin cancer prevention can only be achieved by strict avoidance of sunlight exposure. Thus, we are developing a model for gene therapy in XP, particularly for patients belonging to group D. We report here the construction of a retroviral vector (LXPDSN) containing the XPD (ERCC2) cDNA, which fully complements the DNA repair deficiency of primary skin fibroblasts. Efficient integration, mRNA synthesis, and protein expression of the XPD gene were obtained in all LXPDSN-transduced XP-D fibroblasts tested. Full correction of the DNA repair defect was observed with all DNA repair assays used, such as an increased survival after UV-radiation of the transduced cells, a normal level of DNA repair synthesis (UDS), and the reactivation of a UV-irradiated reporter vector. This retroviral vector will be used to modify keratinocytes genetically to produce repair proficient reconstituted skin for engraftment to XP patients.
Trichothiodystrophy (TTD) is a rare genetic disease with heterogeneous clinical features associated with specific deficiencies in nucleotide excision repair. Patients have brittle hair due to a reduced content of cysteine-rich matrix proteins. About 50% of the cases reported in the literature are photosensitive. In these patients an altered cellular response to UV, due to a specific deficiency in nucleotide excision repair, has been observed. The majority of repair-defective TTD patients have been assigned by complementation analysis to group D of xeroderma pigmentosum (XP). Recently, the human excision repair gene ERCC2 has been shown to correct the UV sensitivity of XP-D fibroblasts. In this work we describe the effect of ERCC2 on the DNA repair deficient phenotype of XP-D and on two repair-defective TTD cell strains (TTD1VI and TTD2VI) assigned by complementation analysis to group D of XP. ERCC2 cDNA, cloned into a mammalian expression vector, was introduced into TTD and XP fibroblasts via DNA-mediated transfection or microneedle injection. UV sensitivity and cellular DNA repair properties, including unscheduled DNA synthesis and reactivation of a UV-irradiated plasmid containing the chloramphenicol acetyltransferase reporter gene (pRSVCat), were corrected to wild-type levels in both TTD and XP-D cells. These data show that a functional ERCC2 gene is sufficient to reestablish a wild-type DNA repair phenotype in TTD1VI and TTD2VI cells, confirming the genetic relationship between TTD and XP-D. Furthermore, our findings suggest that mutations at the ERCC2 locus are responsible for causing a similar phenotype in TTD and XP-D cells in response to UV irradiation, but produce quite different clinical symptoms.
The dystrophin whose defect is responsible for Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies is present in muscle, brain and cerebellum. We describe here the detection of dystrophin in human cultured skin fibroblasts, L809 cells and murine 3T6 cell line. Dystrophin transcripts initiated at the muscle specific first exon can also be amplified by cDNA-PCR from various fibroblastic cells. The expression of the dystrophin gene in fibroblasts could account for some abnormalities observed in patient’s fibroblast cultures.