Telomere length alterations and ATRX/DAXX loss in pituitary adenomas.

08:00 EDT 18th March 2020 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Telomere length alterations and ATRX/DAXX loss in pituitary adenomas."

Telomeres are nucleoprotein complexes located at the termini of eukaryotic chromosomes that prevent exonucleolytic degradation and end-to-end chromosomal fusions. Cancers often have critically shortened, dysfunctional telomeres contributing to genomic instability. Telomere shortening has been reported in a wide range of precancerous lesions and invasive carcinomas. However, the role of telomere alterations, including the presence of alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT), has not been studied in pituitary adenomas. Telomere length and the presence of ALT were assessed directly at the single cell level using a telomere-specific fluorescence in situ hybridization assay in tissue microarrays. Tumors were characterized as either ALT-positive or having short, normal, or long telomere lengths and then these categories were compared with clinicopathological characteristics. ATRX and DAXX expression was studied through immunohistochemistry. We characterized a discovery set of 106 pituitary adenomas including both functional and nonfunctional subsets (88 primary, 18 recurrent). Telomere lengths were estimated and we observed 64 (59.4%) cases with short, 39 (36.8%) cases with normal, and 0 (0%) cases with long telomeres. We did not observe significant differences in the clinicopathological characteristics of the group with abnormally shortened telomeres compared to the group with normal telomeres. However, three pituitary adenomas were identified as ALT-positive of which two were recurrent tumors. Two of these three ALT-positive cases had alterations in either of the chromatin remodeling proteins, ATRX and DAXX, which are routinely altered in other ALT-positive tumor subtypes. In a second cohort of 32 recurrent pituitary adenomas from 22 patients, we found that the tumors from 36% of patients (n = 8) were ALT-positive. This study demonstrates that short telomere lengths are prevalent in pituitary adenomas and that ALT-positive pituitary adenomas are enriched in recurrent disease.


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Modern pathology : an official journal of the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology, Inc
ISSN: 1530-0285


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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

The loss of some TELOMERE sequence during DNA REPLICATION of the first several base pairs of a linear DNA molecule; or from DNA DAMAGE. Cells have various mechanisms to restore length (TELOMERE HOMEOSTASIS.) Telomere shortening is involved in the progression of CELL AGING.

Maintenance of TELOMERE length. During DNA REPLICATION, chromosome ends loose some of their telomere sequence (TELOMERE SHORTENING.) Various cellular mechanism are involved in repairing, extending, and recapping the telomere ends.

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A ubiquitously expressed telomere-binding protein that is present at TELOMERES throughout the CELL CYCLE. It is a suppressor of telomere elongation and may be involved in stabilization of telomere length. It is structurally different from TELOMERIC REPEAT BINDING PROTEIN 2 in that it contains acidic N-terminal amino acid residues.

A ubiquitously expressed telomere-binding protein that is present at TELOMERES throughout the cell cycle. It is a suppressor of telomere elongation and may be involved in stabilization of telomere length. It is structurally different from TELOMERIC REPEAT BINDING PROTEIN 1 in that it contains basic N-terminal amino acid residues.

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