ObjectiveDiverticular disease is a common complex disorder characterised by mucosal outpouchings of the colonic wall that manifests through complications such as diverticulitis, perforation and bleeding. We report the to date largest genome-wide association study (GWAS) to identify genetic risk factors for diverticular disease.DesignDiscovery GWAS analysis was performed on UK Biobank imputed genotypes using 31 964 cases and 419 135 controls of European descent. Associations were replicated in a European sample of 3893 cases and 2829 diverticula-free controls and evaluated for risk contribution to diverticulitis and uncomplicated diverticulosis. Transcripts at top 20 replicating loci were analysed by real-time quatitative PCR in preparations of the mucosal, submucosal and muscular layer of colon. The localisation of expressed protein at selected loci was investigated by immunohistochemistry.ResultsWe discovered 48 risk loci, of which 12 are novel, with genome-wide significance and consistent OR in the replication sample. Nominal replication (p<0.05) was observed for 27 loci, and additional 8 in meta-analysis with a population-based cohort. The most significant novel risk variant rs9960286 is located near CTAGE1 with a p value of 2.3×10−10 and 0.002 (ORallelic=1.14 (95% CI 1.05 to 1.24)) in the replication analysis. Four loci showed stronger effects for diverticulitis, PHGR1 (OR 1.32, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.56), FAM155A-2 (OR 1.21, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.42), CALCB (OR 1.17, 95% CI 1.03 to 1.33) and S100A10 (OR 1.17, 95% CI 1.03 to 1.33).ConclusionIn silico analyses point to diverticulosis primarily as a disorder of intestinal neuromuscular function and of impaired connective fibre support, while an additional diverticulitis risk might be conferred by epithelial dysfunction.
ObjectiveThe rs641738C>T variant located near the membrane-bound O-acyltransferase domain containing 7 (MBOAT7) locus is associated with fibrosis in liver diseases, including non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), alcohol-related liver disease, hepatitis B and C. We aim to understand the mechanism by which the rs641738C>T variant contributes to pathogenesis of NAFLD.DesignMice with hepatocyte-specific deletion of MBOAT7 (Mboat7Δhep) were generated and livers were characterised by histology, flow cytometry, qPCR, RNA sequencing and lipidomics. We analysed the association of rs641738C>T genotype with liver inflammation and fibrosis in 846 NAFLD patients and obtained genotype-specific liver lipidomes from 280 human biopsies.ResultsAllelic imbalance analysis of heterozygous human liver samples pointed to lower expression of the MBOAT7 transcript on the rs641738C>T haplotype. Mboat7Δhep mice showed spontaneous steatosis characterised by increased hepatic cholesterol ester content after 10 weeks. After 6 weeks on a high fat, methionine-low, choline-deficient diet, mice developed increased hepatic fibrosis as measured by picrosirius staining (p<0.05), hydroxyproline content (p<0.05) and transcriptomics, while the inflammatory cell populations and inflammatory mediators were minimally affected. In a human biopsied NAFLD cohort, MBOAT7 rs641738C>T was associated with fibrosis (p=0.004) independent of the presence of histological inflammation. Liver lipidomes of Mboat7Δhep mice and human rs641738TT carriers with fibrosis showed increased total lysophosphatidylinositol levels. The altered lysophosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylinositol subspecies in MBOAT7Δhep livers and human rs641738TT carriers were similar.ConclusionMboat7 deficiency in mice and human points to an inflammation-independent pathway of liver fibrosis that may be mediated by lipid signalling and a potentially targetable treatment option in NAFLD.
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Membrane-engineered cells displaying antigen-targeting ligands are useful as both scientific tools and clinical therapeutics. While genetically encoded artificial receptors have proven efficacious, their scope remains limited, as this approach is not amenable to all cell types and the modification is often permanent. Our group has developed a nongenetic method to rapidly, stably, and reversibly modify any cell membrane with a chemically self-assembled nanoring (CSAN) that can function as a prosthetic receptor. Bifunctional CSANs displaying epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM)-targeted fibronectin domains were installed on the cell membrane through hydrophobic insertion and remained stably bound for ≥72 h in vitro. These CSAN-labeled cells were capable of recognizing EpCAM-expressing target cells, forming intercellular interactions that were subsequently reversed by disassembling the nanoring with the FDA-approved antibiotic, trimethoprim. This study demonstrates the use of this system to engineer cell surfaces with prosthetic receptors capable of directing specific and reversible cell-cell interactions.
BackgroundDetection of circulating (CTC) or disseminated tumor cells (DTC) has been associated with negative prognosis and outcome in patients with colorectal cancer, though testing for these cells is not yet part of clinical routine. There are several different methodological approaches to detect tumor cells but standardized detection assays are not implemented so far.MethodsIn this prospective monocentric study 299 patients with colon cancer were included. CTC and DTC were detected using CK20 RT-PCR as well as immunocytochemistry staining with anti-pan-keratin and anti-EpCAM antibodies. The primary endpoints were: Evaluation of CTC and DTC at the time of surgery and correlation with main tumor characteristics and overall (OS) and disease free survival (DFS).ResultsPatients with detectable CTC had a 5-year OS rate of 68% compared to a 5-year OS rate of 85% in patients without detectable CTC in the blood (p = 0.002). Detection of DTC in the bone marrow with CK20 RT-PCR was not associated with a worse OS or DFS. Detection of pan-cytokeratin positive DTC in the bone marrow correlated with a significantly reduced 5-year OS rate (p = 0.048), but detection of DTC in the bone marrow with the anti-EpCAM antibody did not significantly influence the 5-year OS rate (p = 0.958). By multivariate analyses only detection of CTC with CK20 RT-PCR in the blood was revealed to be an independent predictor of worse OS (HR1.94; 95% CI 1.0–3.7; p = 0.04) and DFS (HR 1.94; 95% CI 1.1–3.7; p = 0.044).ConclusionsDetection of CTC with CK20 RT-PCR is a highly specific and independent prognostic marker in colon cancer patients. Detection of DTC in the bone marrow with CK20 RT-PCR or immunohistochemistry with anti-EpCAM antibody is not associated with a negative prognostic influence.Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12885-016-3035-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
BackgroundSeveral studies have shown, that circulating tumor cells (CTC) have a negative prognostic value in colorectal cancer patients. Aim of this study was to evaluate the role of CTC in specifically rectal cancer patients regarding the influence on overall survival and to elucidate the impact of CTC in predicting response after chemoradiation (RCTX).MethodsIn this prospective monocentric study 267 patients with rectal cancer were included. Patients with locally advanced tumors were treated with RCTX followed by surgery. The primary endpoints were: Evaluation of CTC at the time of surgery and correlation with main tumor characteristics, response to neoadjuvant RCTX and overall survival (OS). CTC were detected in the blood using CK20 RT-PCR.ResultsSixty-three patients were treated with neoadjuvant RCTX. In 46.8 % of the patients receiving neoadjuvant RCTX CTC were detected, which was significantly higher than in the group without RCTX (p = 0.002). Histopathologic regression after RCTX was evident in 27.8 % of the patients. In the subgroup of responders after RCTX we found CTC at a significantly lower rate than in non-responders (p = 0.03). No significant association was found between CTC detection and tumor characteristics and OS. The OS was significantly improved for responders compared to non-responders (p = 0.007).ConclusionsResponders after neoadjuvant RCTX had a lower incidence of CTC compared to non-responders, which might be a result of effective systemic and local treatment prior to surgery. Interestingly, detection of CTC did not correlate with tumor stage and OS, which is in contrast to previous reports of patients with colon cancer.Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12885-015-1989-z) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
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