Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Role of DNA methylation in multiple myeloma blood cancer identified

Date:
September 30, 2010
Source:
The Translational Genomics Research Institute
Summary:
DNA methylation -- a modification of DNA linked to gene regulation -- is altered with increasing severity in a blood cancer called multiple myeloma, according to a new study.

DNA methylation -- a modification of DNA linked to gene regulation -- is altered with increasing severity in a blood cancer called multiple myeloma, according to a study by Mayo Clinic and the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen).

Related Articles


And at specific points of DNA, "global hypomethylation," in which many genes lose the modification, may be associated with the step-by-step development of myeloma, according to a scientific paper published this month in the journal Cancer Research.

"This is the first study to show that hypomethylation occurs early in the development of multiple myeloma and increases through disease progression," said Dr. Bodour Salhia, a TGen cancer researcher and the paper's lead author.

DNA methylation suppresses the expression of viral genes and other harmful elements incorporated over time into an individual's genome. In cancer, hypermethylation at certain genomic locations can turn tumor suppressing genes off, while hypomethylation in some instances may lead to the over-expression of oncogenes, or those genes that give rise to cancer, and is linked to chromosomal instability.

However, there is still much to learn about the consequences of altered methylation.

In this study, researchers examined the methylation status of more than 1,500 CpGs. This is shorthand for C-phosphate-G, or cytosine and guanine -- two of the four chemicals that comprise DNA -- separated by a phosphate group, which links the two nucleosides together.

Researchers used a high-throughput universal bead array technology to examine CpG methylation at different stages of multiple myeloma, evaluating DNA methylation events associated with the progression of tumors.

They performed DNA methylation profiling analysis for more than 800 genes, including tumor suppressors, oncogenes, and genes involved in cancer-related cellular processes. This process contrasts with previous studies that focused on the analysis of a single gene.

They found only a few genes that were hypermethylated, but importantly found many more hypomethylated genes, even in the earliest stages of multiple myeloma.

"Our data suggest that the overall degree of methylation may have some prognostic value, and further studies are needed to determine the functional and clinical significance of our findings," said Dr. John Carpten, Director of TGen's Integrated Cancer Genomics Division and the paper's senior author.

Dr. Salhia, added, "This study represents the most comprehensive examination to date of the role of methylation in multiple myeloma, and is expected to lead to an improved understanding of the biological mechanisms involved in the development of this type of cancer."

The study of DNA methylation falls under epigenetics -- an emerging field in cancer research. Unlike the study of genetics, epigenetics refers to the study of gene activity that does not involve hardwiring alterations in the genetic code. These epigenetic events, which lay atop the genome, are an intricate and heritable mechanism of regulating the expression of genes.

"Understanding the full spectrum of epigenetic modifications will be key to improving the clinical management of the disease, and studies should continue to find new ways of treating multiple myeloma by targeting the multiple myeloma epigenome. This study also emphasizes that hypomethylating strategies may not be the next necessary steps in drug development." said Rafael Fonseca, M.D., Deputy Director of Mayo Clinic Cancer Center in Arizona.

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and the Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium provided funding for the study.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Translational Genomics Research Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Translational Genomics Research Institute. "Role of DNA methylation in multiple myeloma blood cancer identified." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 September 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100930093231.htm>.
The Translational Genomics Research Institute. (2010, September 30). Role of DNA methylation in multiple myeloma blood cancer identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100930093231.htm
The Translational Genomics Research Institute. "Role of DNA methylation in multiple myeloma blood cancer identified." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100930093231.htm (accessed November 23, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Late Cocoa Leaves Bitter Taste

AFP (Nov. 23, 2014) The arable district of Kenema in Sierra Leone -- at the centre of the Ebola outbreak in May -- has been under quarantine for three months as the cocoa harvest comes in. Duration: 01:32 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Don't Fall For Flu Shot Myths

Newsy (Nov. 23, 2014) Misconceptions abound when it comes to your annual flu shot. Medical experts say most people older than 6 months should get the shot. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

AFP (Nov. 21, 2014) Having children has always been a frightening prospect in Sierra Leone, the world's most dangerous place to give birth, but Ebola has presented an alarming new threat for expectant mothers. Duration: 00:37 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins