Neuroblastomas with a high mitosis-karyorrhexis index (High-MKI) are often associated with MYCN amplification, MYCN protein overexpression and adverse clinical outcome. However, the prognostic effect of MYC-family protein expression on these neuroblastomas is less understood, especially when MYCN is not amplified. To address this, MYCN and MYC protein expression in High-MKI cases (120 MYCN amplified and 121 non-MYCN amplified) was examined by immunohistochemistry. The majority (101) of MYCN-amplified High-MKI tumors were MYCN(+), leaving one MYC(+), 2 both(+), and 16 both(-)/(+/-), whereas non-MYCN-amplified cases appeared heterogeneous, including 7 MYCN(+), 36 MYC(+), 3 both(+), and 75 both(-)/(+/-) tumors. These MYC-family proteins(+), or MYC-family driven tumors, were most likely to have prominent nucleolar (PN) formation (indicative of augmented rRNA synthesis). High-MKI neuroblastoma patients showed a poor survival irrespective of MYCN amplification. However, patients with MYC-family driven High-MKI neuroblastomas had significantly lower survival than those with non-MYC-family driven tumors. MYCN(+), MYC-family protein(+), PN(+), and clinical stage independently predicted poor survival. Specific inhibition of hyperactive rRNA synthesis and protein translation was shown to be an effective way to suppress MYC/MYCN protein expression and neuroblastoma growth. Together, MYC-family protein overexpression and PN formation should be included in new neuroblastoma risk stratification and considered for potential therapeutic targets.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was in part supported by NIH grants; U10CA180899, U10CA98543, PO1CA081403, NS094218, and R01CA127571.
© Niemas-Teshiba et al.
- Aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase
- Nucleolar hypertrophy
- Protein translation