Myotonic dystrophy type 2 (DM2) is caused by CCTG repeat expansions in the CNBP gene, comprising 75 to >11,000 units and featuring extensive mosaicism, making it challenging to sequence fully-expanded alleles. To overcome these limitations, we used PCR-free Cas9-mediated nanopore sequencing to characterize CNBP repeat expansions at the single-nucleotide level in nine DM2 patients. The length of normal and expanded alleles can be assessed precisely using this strategy, agreeing with traditional methods, and revealing the degree of mosaicism. We also sequenced an entire ~50 kbp expansion, which has not been achieved previously for DM2 or any other repeat-expansion disorders. Our approach precisely counted the repeats and identified the repeat pattern for both short interrupted and uninterrupted alleles. Interestingly, in the expanded alleles, only two DM2 samples featured the expected pure CCTG repeat pattern, while the other seven presented also TCTG blocks at the 3′ end, which have not been reported before in DM2 patients, but confirmed hereby with orthogonal methods. The demonstrated approach simultaneously determines repeat length, structure/motif and the extent of somatic mosaicism, promising to improve the molecular diagnosis of DM2 and achieve more accurate genotype-phenotype correlations for the better stratification of DM2 patients in clinical trials.
The sequencing data generated in this study have been submitted to the NCBI BioProject database (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/bioproject/) under accession number PRJNA818354. For revision purposes, reviewers can download data from the following link: https://dataview.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/object/PRJNA818354?reviewer=1g4lp9ijkgv5s07is6imnot6ch
- Massimo Delledonne
- Annalisa Botta
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Human subjects: The study was approved by the institutional review board of Policlinico Tor Vergata (document no. 232/19). All experimental procedures were carried out according to The Code of Ethics of the World Medical Association (Declaration of Helsinki). Informed consent was obtained from all nine participants and all samples and clinical information were anonymized immediately after collection using a unique alphanumeric identification code.
- Murim Choi, Seoul National University, Republic of Korea
© 2022, Alfano et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Cytotoxic CD8+ T lymphocytes (CTLs) are key players of adaptive anti-tumor immunity based on their ability to specifically recognize and destroy tumor cells. Many cancer immunotherapies rely on unleashing CTL function. However, tumors can evade killing through strategies which are not yet fully elucidated. To provide deeper insight into tumor evasion mechanisms in an antigen-dependent manner, we established a human co-culture system composed of tumor and primary immune cells. Using this system, we systematically investigated intrinsic regulators of tumor resistance by conducting a complementary CRISPR screen approach. By harnessing CRISPR activation (CRISPRa) and CRISPR knockout (KO) technology in parallel, we investigated gene gain-of-function as well as loss-of-function across genes with annotated function in a colon carcinoma cell line. CRISPRa and CRISPR KO screens uncovered 187 and 704 hits respectively, with 60 gene hits overlapping between both. These data confirmed the role of interferon‑γ (IFN-γ), tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) and autophagy pathways and uncovered novel genes implicated in tumor resistance to killing. Notably, we discovered that ILKAP encoding the integrin-linked kinase-associated serine/threonine phosphatase 2C, a gene previously unknown to play a role in antigen specific CTL-mediated killing, mediate tumor resistance independently from regulating antigen presentation, IFN-γ or TNF-α responsiveness. Moreover, our work describes the contrasting role of soluble and membrane-bound ICAM-1 in regulating tumor cell killing. The deficiency of membrane-bound ICAM-1 (mICAM-1) or the overexpression of soluble ICAM-1 (sICAM-1) induced resistance to CTL killing, whereas PD-L1 overexpression had no impact. These results highlight the essential role of ICAM-1 at the immunological synapse between tumor and CTL and the antagonist function of sICAM-1.
The Maillard reaction, a chemical reaction between amino acids and sugars, is exploited to produce flavorful food ubiquitously, from the baking industry to our everyday lives. However, the Maillard reaction also occurs in all cells, from prokaryotes to eukaryotes, forming Advanced Glycation End-products (AGEs). AGEs are a heterogeneous group of compounds resulting from the irreversible reaction between biomolecules and α-dicarbonyls (α-DCs), including methylglyoxal (MGO), an unavoidable byproduct of anaerobic glycolysis and lipid peroxidation. We previously demonstrated that Caenorhabditis elegans mutants lacking the glod-4 glyoxalase enzyme displayed enhanced accumulation of α-DCs, reduced lifespan, increased neuronal damage, and touch hypersensitivity. Here, we demonstrate that glod-4 mutation increased food intake and identify that MGO-derived hydroimidazolone, MG-H1, is a mediator of the observed increase in food intake. RNAseq analysis in glod-4 knockdown worms identified upregulation of several neurotransmitters and feeding genes. Suppressor screening of the overfeeding phenotype identified the tdc-1-tyramine-tyra-2/ser-2 signaling as an essential pathway mediating AGEs (MG-H1) induced feeding in glod-4 mutants. We also identified the elt-3 GATA transcription factor as an essential upstream regulator for increased feeding upon accumulation of AGEs by partially controlling the expression of tdc-1 gene. Further, the lack of either tdc-1 or tyra-2/ser-2 receptors suppresses the reduced lifespan and rescues neuronal damage observed in glod-4 mutants. Thus, in C. elegans, we identified an elt-3 regulated tyramine-dependent pathway mediating the toxic effects of MG-H1 AGE. Understanding this signaling pathway may help understand hedonistic overfeeding behavior observed due to modern AGEs-rich diets.