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Retroviruses, acting as somatic cell insertional mutagens, have been widely used to identify cancer genes in the haematopoietic system and mammary gland. An insertional mutagen for use in other mouse somatic cells would facilitate the identification of genes involved in tumour formation in a wider variety of tissues. Here we report the ability of the(More)
Medulloblastoma, the most common malignant paediatric brain tumour, arises in the cerebellum and disseminates through the cerebrospinal fluid in the leptomeningeal space to coat the brain and spinal cord. Dissemination, a marker of poor prognosis, is found in up to 40% of children at diagnosis and in most children at the time of recurrence. Affected(More)
BACKGROUND & AIMS The molecular mechanism underlying epithelial metaplasia in Barrett's esophagus remains unknown. Recognizing that Hedgehog signaling is required for early esophageal development, we sought to determine if the Hedgehog pathway is reactivated in Barrett's esophagus, and if genes downstream of the pathway could promote columnar(More)
The Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon system, derived from teleost fish sequences, is extremely effective at delivering DNA to vertebrate genomes, including those of humans. We have examined several parameters of the SB system to improve it as a potential, nonviral vector for gene therapy. Our investigation centered on three features: the carrying capacity of(More)
Retroviral insertional mutagenesis in BXH2 and AKXD recombinant inbred mice induces a high incidence of myeloid or B- and T-cell leukaemia and the proviral integration sites in the leukaemias provide powerful genetic tags for disease gene identification. Some of the disease genes identified by proviral tagging are also associated with human disease,(More)
Recent advances in cancer therapeutics stress the need for a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms driving tumor formation. This can be accomplished by obtaining a more complete description of the genes that contribute to cancer. We previously described an approach using the Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon system to model hematopoietic(More)
The National Cancer Institute and the National Human Genome Research Institute recently announced a 3-year 100-million-dollar pilot study to use large-scale resequencing of genes in human tumors to identify new cancer genes. The hope is that some of these genes can be used as drug targets for developing better therapeutics for treating cancer. Although this(More)
The Trk family of neurotrophin receptors, which includes the three highly homologous proteins TrkA, TrkB and TrkC, is strongly associated with central and peripheral nervous system processes. Trk proteins are also of interest in oncology, since Trk activation has been observed in several cancer types. While Trk kinases are attractive oncology targets,(More)
Transposons have provided important genetic tools for functional genomic screens in lower eukaryotes but have proven less useful in higher eukaryotes because of their low transposition frequency. Here we show that Sleeping Beauty (SB), a member of the Tc1/mariner class of transposons, can be mobilized in mouse somatic cells at frequencies high enough to(More)
Human colorectal cancers (CRCs) display a large number of genetic and epigenetic alterations, some of which are causally involved in tumorigenesis (drivers) and others that have little functional impact (passengers). To help distinguish between these two classes of alterations, we used a transposon-based genetic screen in mice to identify candidate genes(More)