The publication data currently available has been vetted by Vanderbilt faculty, staff, administrators and trainees. The data itself is retrieved directly from NCBI's PubMed and is automatically updated on a weekly basis to ensure accuracy and completeness.
If you have any questions or comments, please contact us.
Chromatin remodeler Brahma related gene 1 (BRG1) is silenced in approximately 10% of human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDAs). We previously showed that BRG1 inhibits the formation of intraductal pancreatic mucinous neoplasm (IPMN) and that IPMN-derived PDA originated from ductal cells. However, the role of BRG1 in pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia-derived (PanIN-derived) PDA that originated from acinar cells remains elusive. Here, we found that exclusive elimination of Brg1 in acinar cells of Ptf1a-CreER; KrasG12D; Brg1fl/fl mice impaired the formation of acinar-to-ductal metaplasia (ADM) and PanIN independently of p53 mutation, while PDA formation was inhibited in the presence of p53 mutation. BRG1 bound to regions of the Sox9 promoter to regulate its expression and was critical for recruitment of upstream regulators, including PDX1, to the Sox9 promoter and enhancer in acinar cells. SOX9 expression was downregulated in BRG1-depleted ADMs/PanINs. Notably, Sox9 overexpression canceled this PanIN-attenuated phenotype in KBC mice. Furthermore, Brg1 deletion in established PanIN by using a dual recombinase system resulted in regression of the lesions in mice. Finally, BRG1 expression correlated with SOX9 expression in human PDAs. In summary, BRG1 is critical for PanIN initiation and progression through positive regulation of SOX9. Thus, the BRG1/SOX9 axis is a potential target for PanIN-derived PDA.
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) adopts several unique metabolic strategies to support primary tumor growth. Whether additional metabolic strategies are adopted to support metastatic tumorigenesis is less clear. This could be particularly relevant for distant metastasis, which often follows a rapidly progressive clinical course. Here we report that PDAC distant metastases evolve a unique series of metabolic reactions to maintain activation of the anabolic glucose enzyme phosphogluconate dehydrogenase (PGD). PGD catalytic activity was recurrently elevated across distant metastases, and modulating PGD activity levels dictated tumorigenic capacity. Metabolomics data raised the possibility that distant metastases evolved a core pentose conversion pathway (PCP) that converted glucose-derived metabolites into PGD substrate, thereby hyperactivating the enzyme. Consistent with this, each individual metabolite in the PCP stimulated PGD catalysis in distant metastases, and knockdown of each individual PCP enzyme selectively impaired tumorigenesis. We propose that the PCP manufactures PGD substrate outside of the rate-limiting oxidative pentose phosphate pathway (oxPPP). This enables PGD-dependent tumorigenesis by providing adequate substrate to fuel high catalytic activity, and raises the possibility that PDAC distant metastases adopt their own unique metabolic strategies to support tumor growth.
Pathologic examination of hepatic metastasectomies from patients with metastatic small intestinal or pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor frequently reveals micrometastases undetectable by radiologic or macroscopic gross examination. This finding raises the possibility that undetectable micrometastases remain in these patients after metastasectomy. Here we examined liver resections for micrometastases and assessed their impact on prognosis. Hepatic metastasectomies from 65 patients with neuroendocrine tumor of the small intestine (N = 43) or pancreas (N = 22) were reviewed for the presence of micrometastases, which were defined as microscopic tumor foci ≤1 mm in greatest dimension. Medical records were also reviewed for patient demographics, clinical history, and follow-up data. Micrometastasis was identified in 36 (55%) of 65 hepatic resection specimens. More hepatic micrometastases were seen in small intestinal cases than in pancreatic cases (29/43, 67%, versus 7/22, 32%; P < .01). They were typically present within portal tracts, sometimes with extension into the periportal region or sinusoidal spaces away from the portal tracts. Patients without hepatic micrometastases had fewer macrometastases or more R0 hepatic resections than those with micrometastases. The presence of hepatic micrometastases was associated with poor overall survival both before (hazard ratio [HR] 3.43; 95% CI 1.14-10.30; P = .03) and after accounting for confounding variables in stratified Cox regression (HR 4.82; 95% CI 1.0621.79; P = .04). In conclusion, hepatic micrometastases are common in patients with metastatic small intestinal or pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor and are independently associated with poor prognosis. These data suggest that surgical resection of hepatic metastases is likely not curative in these patients.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND & AIMS - The ARID1A gene encodes a protein that is part of the large adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-dependent chromatin remodeling complex SWI/SNF and is frequently mutated in human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDACs). We investigated the functions of ARID1A during formation of PDACs in mice.
METHODS - We performed studies with Ptf1a-Cre;Kras mice, which express activated Kras in the pancreas and develop pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasias (PanINs), as well as those with disruption of Aird1a (Ptf1a-Cre;Kras;Arid1a mice) or disruption of Brg1 (encodes a catalytic ATPase of the SWI/SNF complex) (Ptf1a-Cre;Kras; Brg1mice). Pancreatic ductal cells (PDCs) were isolated from Arid1a mice and from Arid1a;SOX9OE mice, which overexpress human SOX9 upon infection with an adenovirus-expressing Cre recombinase. Pancreatic tissues were collected from all mice and analyzed by histology and immunohistochemistry; cells were isolated and grown in 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional cultures. We performed microarray analyses to compare gene expression patterns in intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs) from the different strains of mice. We obtained 58 samples of IPMNs and 44 samples of PDACs from patients who underwent pancreatectomy in Japan and analyzed them by immunohistochemistry.
RESULTS - Ptf1a-Cre;Kras mice developed PanINs, whereas Ptf1a-Cre;Kras;Arid1a mice developed IPMNs and PDACs; IPMNs originated from PDCs. ARID1A-deficient IPMNs did not express SOX9. ARID1A-deficient PDCs had reduced expression of SOX9 and dedifferentiated in culture. Overexpression of SOX9 in these cells allowed them to differentiate and prevented dilation of ducts. Among mice with pancreatic expression of activated Kras, those with disruption of Arid1a developed fewer PDACs from IPMNs than mice with disruption of Brg1. ARID1A-deficient IPMNs had reduced activity of the mTOR pathway. Human IPMN and PDAC specimens had reduced levels of ARID1A, SOX9, and phosphorylated S6 (a marker of mTOR pathway activation). Levels of ARID1A correlated with levels of SOX9 and phosphorylated S6.
CONCLUSIONS - ARID1A regulates expression of SOX9, activation of the mTOR pathway, and differentiation of PDCs. ARID1A inhibits formation of PDACs from IPMNs in mice with pancreatic expression of activated KRAS and is down-regulated in IPMN and PDAC tissues from patients.
Copyright © 2018 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Pancreatic mucinous cystic neoplasms (MCNs) are rare tumors typically of the distal pancreas that harbor malignant potential. Although resection is recommended, data are limited on optimal operative approaches to distal pancreatectomy for MCN. MCN resections (2000-2014; eight institutions) were included. Outcomes of minimally invasive and open MCN resections were compared. A total of 289 patients underwent distal pancreatectomy for MCN: 136(47%) minimally invasive and 153(53%) open. Minimally invasive procedures were associated with smaller MCN size (3.9 vs 6.8 cm; P = 0.001), lower operative blood loss (192 vs 392 mL; P = 0.001), and shorter hospital stay(5 vs 7 days; P = 0.001) compared with open. Despite higher American Society of Anesthesiologists class, hand-assisted (n = 46) had similar advantages as laparoscopic/robotic (n = 76). When comparing hand-assisted to open, although MCN size was slightly smaller (4.1 vs 6.8 cm; P = 0.001), specimen length, operative time, and nodal yield were identical. Similar to laparoscopic/robotic, hand-assisted had lower operative blood loss (161 vs 392 mL; P = 0.001) and shorter hospital stay (5 vs 7 days; P = 0.03) compared with open, without increased complications. Hand-assisted laparoscopic technique is a useful approach for MCN resection because specimen length, lymph node yield, operative time, and complication profiles are similar to open procedures, but it still offers the advantages of a minimally invasive approach. Hand-assisted laparoscopy should be considered as an alternative to open technique or as a successive step before converting from total laparoscopic to open distal pancreatectomy for MCN.
The cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) pathway is upregulated in many pancreatic cancer cells, and it is believed that carcinogenetic effects of COX-2 upregulation are largely through prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) overproduction. We tested this hypothesis by evaluating the association between urinary PGE2 metabolites (PGE-M), a biomarker of in vivo PGE2 overproduction, and pancreatic cancer risk. We conducted a case-control study with 722 subjects (239 cases and 483 controls) nested within two prospective cohort studies, the Shanghai Women's Health Study (SWHS) and Shanghai Men's Health Study (SMHS). Pre-diagnosis urine samples were measured for PGE-M using a liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometric method. Conditional logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95%CI), with adjustment for potential confounders. Compared to those with the lowest urine level of PGE-M (the first quartile), individuals with higher urine levels of PGE-M had an increased risk of developing pancreatic cancer, with adjusted ORs (95%CI) of 1.63 (0.98-2.73), 1.55 (0.90-2.69) and 1.94 (1.07-3.51), for the second to the fourth quartile groups, respectively (p for trend = 0.054). This dose-response positive association was more evident among those who had BMI <25 kg/m than overweight individuals (p for interaction = 0.058). After excluding cases diagnosed in the first year of follow-up and their matched controls, this positive association persisted (p for trend = 0.037) and the interaction became statistically significant (p for interaction = 0.017). Our study adds additional evidence that the COX-2 pathway is involved in pancreatic carcinogenesis and suggests that urinary PGE-M may serve as a biomarker for predicting pancreatic cancer risk.
© 2017 UICC.
BACKGROUND AND AIMS - c-Myc is highly expressed in pancreatic multipotent progenitor cells (MPC) and in pancreatic cancer. The transition from MPC to unipotent acinar progenitors is associated with c-Myc downregulation; a role for c-Myc in this process, and its possible relationship to a role in cancer, has not been established.
DESIGN - Using coimmunoprecipitation assays, we demonstrate that c-Myc and Ptf1a interact. Using reverse transcriptase qPCR, western blot and immunofluorescence, we show the erosion of the acinar programme. To analyse the genomic distribution of c-Myc and Ptf1a and the global transcriptomic profile, we used ChIP-seq and RNA-seq, respectively; validation was performed with ChIP-qPCR and RT-qPCR. Lineage-tracing experiments were used to follow the effect of c-Myc overexpression in preacinar cells on acinar differentiation.
RESULTS - c-Myc binds and represses the transcriptional activity of Ptf1a c-Myc overexpression in preacinar cells leads to a massive erosion of differentiation. In adult mice: (1) c-Myc binds to Ptf1a, and Tcf3 is downregulated; (2) Ptf1a and c-Myc display partially overlapping chromatin occupancy but do not bind the same E-boxes; (3) at the proximal promoter of genes coding for digestive enzymes, we find reduced PTF1 binding and increased levels of repressive chromatin marks and PRC2 complex components. Lineage tracing of committed acinar precursors reveals that c-Myc overexpression does not restore multipotency but allows the persistence of a preacinar-like cell population. In addition, mutant KRas can lead to c-Myc overexpression and acinar dysregulation.
CONCLUSIONS - c-Myc repression during development is crucial for the maturation of preacinar cells, and c-Myc overexpression can contribute to pancreatic carcinogenesis through the induction of a dedifferentiated state.
Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/.
During the progression of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), heterogeneous subclonal populations emerge that drive primary tumor growth, regional spread, distant metastasis, and patient death. However, the genetics of metastases largely reflects that of the primary tumor in untreated patients, and PDAC driver mutations are shared by all subclones. This raises the possibility that an epigenetic process might operate during metastasis. Here we report large-scale reprogramming of chromatin modifications during the natural evolution of distant metastasis. Changes were targeted to thousands of large chromatin domains across the genome that collectively specified malignant traits, including euchromatin and large organized chromatin histone H3 lysine 9 (H3K9)-modified (LOCK) heterochromatin. Remarkably, distant metastases co-evolved a dependence on the oxidative branch of the pentose phosphate pathway (oxPPP), and oxPPP inhibition selectively reversed reprogrammed chromatin, malignant gene expression programs, and tumorigenesis. These findings suggest a model whereby linked metabolic-epigenetic programs are selected for enhanced tumorigenic fitness during the evolution of distant metastasis.
Aberrant activation of embryonic signaling pathways is frequent in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA), making developmental regulators therapeutically attractive. Here we demonstrate diverse functions for pancreatic and duodenal homeobox 1 (PDX1), a transcription factor indispensable for pancreas development, in the progression from normal exocrine cells to metastatic PDA. We identify a critical role for PDX1 in maintaining acinar cell identity, thus resisting the formation of pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN)-derived PDA. Upon neoplastic transformation, the role of PDX1 changes from tumor-suppressive to oncogenic. Interestingly, subsets of malignant cells lose PDX1 expression while undergoing epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), and PDX1 loss is associated with poor outcome. This stage-specific functionality arises from profound shifts in PDX1 chromatin occupancy from acinar cells to PDA. In summary, we report distinct roles of PDX1 at different stages of PDA, suggesting that therapeutic approaches against this potential target need to account for its changing functions at different stages of carcinogenesis. These findings provide insight into the complexity of PDA pathogenesis and advocate a rigorous investigation of therapeutically tractable targets at distinct phases of PDA development and progression.
© 2016 Roy et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.
Diagnosed before age 50, early onset pancreatic malignancy (EOPM), is hypothesized to be a distinct subset of disease, although research is limited. To better characterize EOPM, and the effect of age at diagnosis on pancreatic cancer survival, we examined clinical characteristics and survival in EOPM and typical age-at-onset pancreatic malignancy (TOPM) cases. Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) Cancer Registry confirmed pancreatic adenocarcinomas (PDACs) and malignant pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (PNETs) were evaluated. Clinical characteristics were compared using χ(2) tests. Overall survival was visualized with Kaplan-Meier functions; Cox proportional hazards regression was used to evaluate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). A total of 1,697 pancreatic malignancies were diagnosed at the VUMC between 1988 and 2013. Of 1,407 PDACs, 118 (8.4%) were EOPM, which was associated with significantly better survival (adjusted HR: 0.82, 95% CI: 0.67-1.00). EOPM and TOPM PDACs significantly differed with regard to having multiple malignancies; survival associations significantly differed by race, stage of disease, treatment and multiple malignancies. Of 190 PNETs, 63 (33.1%) were EOPM, which was not significantly associated with survival (adjusted HR: 0.80, 95% CI: 0.46-1.40). Malignant neuroendocrine EOPM and TOPM cases significantly differed by stage of disease and tumor location; survival associations significantly differed by family history of pancreatic cancer, stage of disease and multiple malignancies. Differences in clinical characteristics and associations with survival were identified, indicating that EOPM is distinct from TOPM, and exists among both pancreatic adenocarcinomas and malignant pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors.
© 2016 UICC.