Albert Einstein Cancer Center

Meta-analysis of microarray studies reveals a novel hematopoietic progenitor cell signature and demonstrates feasibility of inter-platform data integration

Microarray-based studies of global gene expression (GE) have resulted in a large amount of data that can be mined for further insights into disease and physiology. Meta-analysis of these data is hampered by technical limitations due to many different platforms, gene annotations and probes used in different studies. Amit Verma and his collaborators evaluated the feasibility of conducting a meta-analysis of GE studies to determine a transcriptional signature of hematopoietic progenitor and stem cells. They found that in spite of differences in methodologies and other conditions, this approach distinguished biologically distinct normal tissues by clustering them based on their cell of origin. GE studies of leukemias and myelodysplasia progenitors clustered with normal progenitors distinct from other normal tissues. GE also identified a gene expression signature characteristic of normal hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. Genes that were most uniformly expressed in progenitors and at the same time differentially expressed when compared to other normal tissues were found to be involved in important biological processes such as cell cycle regulation and hematopoiesis.


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