The Combined Expression Patterns of Ikaros Isoforms Characterize Different Hematological Tumor Subtypes


A variety of genetic alterations are considered hallmarks of cancer development and progression. The Ikaros gene family, encoding for key transcription factors in hematopoietic development, provides several examples as genetic defects in these genes are associated with the development of different types of leukemia. However, the complex patterns of expression of isoforms in Ikaros family genes has prevented their use as clinical markers. In this study, we propose the use of the expression profiles of the Ikaros isoforms to classify various hematological tumor diseases. We have standardized a quantitative PCR protocol to estimate the expression levels of the Ikaros gene exons. Our analysis reveals that these levels are associated with specific types of leukemia and we have found differences in the levels of expression relative to five interexonic Ikaros regions for all diseases studied. In conclusion, our method has allowed us to precisely discriminate between B-ALL, CLL and MM cases. Differences between the groups of lymphoid and myeloid pathologies were also identified in the same way.

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0082411

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