Fibroblasts derived from oesophageal adenocarcinoma differ in DNA methylation profile from normal oesophageal fibroblasts
Palethorpe, Helen M
Hayden, Annette L
Young, Joanne P
Underwood, Timothy J
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Oesophageal adenocarcinoma (OAC) is increasing in incidence and has a poor prognosis. Tumour derived fibroblasts (TDFs) differ functionally from normal fibroblasts (NDFs), and play a pivotal role in cancer. Many of the differences persist through subculture. We measured the DNA methylation profiles of 10 TDFs from OAC with 12 NDF from normal oesophageal mucosa using Infinium HumanMethylation450 Beadchips and found they differed in multidimensional scaling analysis. We identified 4,856 differentially methylated CpGs (DMCs, adjusted p < 0.01 and absolute difference in average β-value > 0.15), of which 3,243 (66.8%) were hypomethylated in TDFs compared to NDFs. Hypermethylated DMCs were enriched at transcription start sites (TSSs) and in CpG islands, and depleted in transcriptional enhancers. Gene ontology analysis of genes with DMCs at TSSs revealed an enrichment of genes involved in development, morphogenesis, migration, adhesion, regulation of processes and response to stimuli. Alpha-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) is a marker of activated fibroblasts and a poor prognostic indicator in OAC. Hypomethylated DMCs were observed at the TSS of transcript variant 2 of α-SMA, which correlated with an increase in α-SMA protein expression. These data suggest that DNA methylation may contribute to the maintenance of the TDF phenotype.
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