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J. Mol. Pathol., Volume 5, Issue 2 (June 2024) – 5 articles

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13 pages, 499 KiB  
Review
Impact of Gut–Brain Axis on Hepatobiliary Diseases in Fetal Programming
by Mukesh Kumar Yadav, Zeeshan Ahmad Khan, Jing-Hua Wang and AbuZar Ansari
J. Mol. Pathol. 2024, 5(2), 215-227; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmp5020014 - 16 May 2024
Viewed by 291
Abstract
The hepatobiliary system is vital for the biotransformation and disposition of endogenous molecules. Any impairment in the normal functioning of the hepatobiliary system leads to a spectrum of hepatobiliary diseases (HBDs), such as liver cirrhosis, fatty liver, biliary dyskinesia, gallbladder cancer, etc. Especially [...] Read more.
The hepatobiliary system is vital for the biotransformation and disposition of endogenous molecules. Any impairment in the normal functioning of the hepatobiliary system leads to a spectrum of hepatobiliary diseases (HBDs), such as liver cirrhosis, fatty liver, biliary dyskinesia, gallbladder cancer, etc. Especially in pregnancy, HBD may result in increased maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. Maternal HBD is a burden to the fetus’s growth, complicates fetal development, and risks the mother’s life. In fetal programming, the maternal mechanism is significantly disturbed by multiple factors (especially diet) that influence the development of the fetus and increase the frequency of metabolic diseases later in life. Additionally, maternal under-nutrition or over-nutrition (especially in high-fat, high-carbohydrate, or protein-rich diets) lead to dysregulation in gut hormones (CCK, GLP-1, etc.), microbiota metabolite production (SCFA, LPS, TMA, etc.), neurotransmitters (POMC, NPY, etc.), and hepatobiliary signaling (insulin resistance, TNF-a, SREBPs, etc.), which significantly impact fetal programming. Recently, biotherapeutics have provided a new horizon for treating HBD during fetal programming to save the lives of the mother and fetus. This review focuses on how maternal impaired hepatobiliary metabolic signaling leads to disease transmission to the fetus mediated through the gut–brain axis. Full article
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16 pages, 4738 KiB  
Article
Liquid Biopsy Profiling with Multiple Tests in Patients with Metastatic Breast Cancer
by Nikki Higa, Lisa Welter, Liya Xu, Anand Kolatkar, Kelli S. Bramlett, Ole V. Gjoerup, Ryon Graf, Richard S.P. Huang, Rebecca J. Leary, Young Lee, Jeremy G. Perkins, Adam I. Riker, Angad P. Singh, Lorraine Tafra, Carol K. Tweed, Craig D. Shriver, James Hicks and Peter Kuhn
J. Mol. Pathol. 2024, 5(2), 199-214; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmp5020013 - 9 May 2024
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Abstract
The chief goal of the Blood Profiling Atlas in Cancer (BloodPAC) consortium is to promote collaborative efforts that support the development and implementation of liquid biopsy tests. Here, we report the results of a pilot study conducted by three BloodPAC members that aimed [...] Read more.
The chief goal of the Blood Profiling Atlas in Cancer (BloodPAC) consortium is to promote collaborative efforts that support the development and implementation of liquid biopsy tests. Here, we report the results of a pilot study conducted by three BloodPAC members that aimed to demonstrate a multisite liquid biopsy testing framework using longitudinal blood specimens from 38 patients with metastatic breast cancer. Three laboratories receiving identical samples from two clinical sites each applied a different targeted sequencing platform to analyze mutations in cell-free DNA (cfDNA). The resulting mutational profiles reflected common breast cancer alterations, including clinically actionable mutations for 40% of hormone- receptor-positive patients. In 12 genes with shared target regions across sequencing panels, perfect inter-assay concordance was also observed for mutations detected above the lowest common assay limit of detection. Whole-genome copy number profiling of cfDNA and circulating tumor cells (CTCs) further revealed marked heterogeneity in copy number alterations and cfDNA tumor fractions across patients. Additionally, comparison of tumor fraction and CTC abundance demonstrated the complementary nature of cfDNA and CTC analyses. Overall, the framework described in this study may serve as a resource for future trials aiming to identify multimodal liquid biopsy biomarkers to guide clinical care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Journal of Molecular Pathology)
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13 pages, 709 KiB  
Review
Molecular Profiling of H-MSI/dMMR/for Endometrial Cancer Patients: “New Challenges in Diagnostic Routine Practice”
by Riccardo Adorisio, Giancarlo Troncone, Massimo Barberis and Francesco Pepe
J. Mol. Pathol. 2024, 5(2), 187-198; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmp5020012 - 24 Apr 2024
Viewed by 444
Abstract
Endometrial cancer (EC) represents one of the most newly diagnosed cancers across gynecological malignancies. In particular, a plethora of risk factors (both biological and lifestyle-related) drastically impact the incidence rate of novel diagnosis accounting for 8300 cases/year. In the recent era of precision [...] Read more.
Endometrial cancer (EC) represents one of the most newly diagnosed cancers across gynecological malignancies. In particular, a plethora of risk factors (both biological and lifestyle-related) drastically impact the incidence rate of novel diagnosis accounting for 8300 cases/year. In the recent era of precision medicine EC molecular classification, integrating ESGO/ESTRO/ESP guidelines, four distinct diagnostic groups have been established including POLE-mutant (POLE-pos); High-instability MSI (H-MSI)–MMR-deficient (MMR-d); p53-abnormal (p53abn); and non-specific molecular profile (NSMP), also known as p53-wild-type EC patients on the basis of clinically relevant emerging biomarkers. In addition, molecular testing also plays a pivotal role in defining the best therapeutical option. In this scenario, the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) recommended d-MMR/MSI-H status evaluation in the diagnostic workflow of Lynch syndrome or selecting EC patients that could benefit from immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs). Although immunohistochemistry (IHC) is considered the gold standard approach for d-MMR profiling, a series of molecular PCR-based techniques have rapidly developed to integrate H-MSI status in routine practice. Here, we technically overviewed the most relevant commercially available diagnostic assays for the determination of the H-MSI/dMMR status in EC patients. Full article
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16 pages, 1373 KiB  
Review
Mechanisms of Inflammasome Activation and Involvement in Liver Disease
by Ananda Baral
J. Mol. Pathol. 2024, 5(2), 171-186; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmp5020011 - 13 Apr 2024
Viewed by 699
Abstract
The liver is a multi-potent organ with important metabolic, immunological and endocrine functions. Hepatic physiology is maintained at a balanced state via the delicate actions of different liver-resident cells. Among several factors that modulate hepatic physiology, the harmony between the activity of pro- [...] Read more.
The liver is a multi-potent organ with important metabolic, immunological and endocrine functions. Hepatic physiology is maintained at a balanced state via the delicate actions of different liver-resident cells. Among several factors that modulate hepatic physiology, the harmony between the activity of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines is a crucial determinant. However, initiation of inflammatory activity can be detrimental if it goes unresolved, leading to severe consequences such as hepatitis, hepatic fibrosis, cirrhosis or even hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Different physiological processes can modulate the hepatic microenvironment; one such factor is a cytosolic protein complex called the inflammasome. Inflammasome activation is a consequence of the cellular encounter with pathogens or products of cellular damage. Once activated, inflammasomes promote the maturation of interleukin-1 family cytokines such as IL-1β and IL-18 via activation of caspase-1. These cytokines have a very potent role in modulating hepatic physiology. Various lines of reports suggest that inflammasome activation and IL-1 cytokines play critical roles in liver diseases, including hepatitis, hepatic fibrosis and HCC. Conversely, inhibition of inflammasome activation and/or IL-1 signaling prevents such effects. This review summarizes the mechanisms leading to inflammasome activation and the role it plays in hepatic physiology. Full article
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18 pages, 363 KiB  
Review
Basal Cell Carcinoma: Diagnosis, Management and Prevention
by Peerzada Umar Farooq Baba, Ashfaq ul Hassan, Junaid Khurshid and Adil Hafeez Wani
J. Mol. Pathol. 2024, 5(2), 153-170; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmp5020010 - 10 Apr 2024
Viewed by 1077
Abstract
Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is a slow-growing, locally aggressive, rarely metastasizing, low-grade cutaneous neoplasm that arises from the epidermal basal layer and invades the adjoining tissues. It is the most common skin cancer. It is fairly common in fair Caucasians and quite uncommon [...] Read more.
Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is a slow-growing, locally aggressive, rarely metastasizing, low-grade cutaneous neoplasm that arises from the epidermal basal layer and invades the adjoining tissues. It is the most common skin cancer. It is fairly common in fair Caucasians and quite uncommon in dark-skinned populations. It contributes to 65–75% of cutaneous malignancies in whites and 20–30% in Asian Indians. The most important causal factors appear to be radiation exposure and genetic predisposition. It may present as a nonhealing lesion that occasionally bleeds or as a pruritic lesion with no symptoms. Tumours rarely spread to regional lymph nodes. The clinical appearances and morphology of BCC are diverse. Clinical types include nodular, cystic, superficial, pigmented, morphoeaform, (sclerosing), keratotic and fibroepithelioma of Pinkus. Most of the lesions appear on the head and neck, usually above the line joining the tragus and the angle of the mouth. A biopsy should be performed on all lesions suspected of BCC. The primary aim of treatment is the complete excision of the tumour tissue. Other treatment modalities include cryotherapy, immunomodulatory drugs, laser treatment or locally applicable chemotherapeutic agents. Prevention consists of lifestyle changes such as avoiding sunburn, tanning beds and prolonged direct sun exposure, shade seeking, sunscreen application on the skin, and physical barrier methods such as protective clothing, hats and sunglasses. Regular sunscreen use in childhood and adolescence seems more beneficial than in adulthood. Full article
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