Microarray Analysis In

The introduction of microarray analysis revolutionized the analysis of gene profiles. Not only can thousands of genes be analyzed together, but the technique also identifies gene profiles, "molecular signatures" that can help refine the disease, categorize its subtypes, better predict outcomes, and hopefully tailor therapies.

Microarray analysis studies in MDS identified new important genes, profiles that may help distinguish MDS from AML, as well as low risk from high risk MDS. In one study, investigators were able to discriminate between healthy control bone marrow samples and samples from MDS patients using the expression profile of 11 selected genes representing different gene classes. The gene expression profile was also able to discriminate between low risk and high risk MDS. The retinoic acid induced gene (RAI3), radiation-inducible immediate early response gene (IEX1), and the stress-induced phosphoprotein 1 (STIP1) gene were among the genes down-regulated in low risk MDS reflecting that the CD34 MDS, stem cells may lack the defensive proteins and thus be more susceptible to damage.27 In another study, researchers were able to distinguish between AML blasts and MDS blasts by using gene profiles. Delta-like gene (Dlk), Tec gene, and inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor type 1 gene were among those highly specific for MDS. The Dlk 1 gene, for example, may be an important gene in cell proliferation and may allow stro-mal cells to support stem cells.28 Gene sets identified for early stage MDS included the PIASy gene (PIAS family are a group of signaling proteins), which functions as a tumor-suppressor gene. As MDS progresses and transforms to AML, those gene expressions are decreased.29

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