Obesity endgenders a wide spectrum of interrelated pathologies including hyperglycemia, insulin resistance, hyperlipidemia, and Type 2 diabetes, collectively termed the metabolic syndrome. This condition significantly increases risk for cancers of the colon, liver, pancreas, kidney, breast, cervix, and endometrium;however, the mechanisms responsible remain unknown. Many pathological complications of obesity and Type 2 diabetes arise from hyperglycemia and the subsequent accumulation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) resulting from reactions of glucose-derived ?-oxo aldehydes with proteins, lipids, and DNA. Although the pathological consequences of protein-AGEs in metabolic disease have been recognized for many years, the extent of DNA-AGE accumulation and its potential role in obese/diabetic pathology are largely unexplored. Using a highly sensitive and determinative mass spectrometric method, we have shown that a major DNA-AGE, CEdG, is present at significant levels in human tissue, and its levels are substantially elevated in animl models of metabolic syndrome relative to lean euglycemic controls. We recently showed that CEdG is mutagenic in human cells, and that nucleotide excision repair (NER) is the major pathway for minimizing DNA-AGE induced genomic instability. Because NER is downregulated as consequence of adiposity and diabetes we theorize that the accumulation of mutagenic DNA-AGEs in individuals with metabolic syndrome substantially elevates their cancer susceptibility. Our long term goal is to determine how elevated DNA-AGE levels in metabolic disease contribute to genomic instability and increased vulnerability to cancer. We will test the hypothesis that hyperglycemia-induced accumulation of mutagenic DNA-AGEs in conjunction with attenuated DNA repair propels genomic instability and substantially increases cancer susceptibility. We propose that tissue-specific variations in DNA-AGE accumulation and mutagenesis account in part for the restricted range of cancers associated with obesity. Progress toward our long term goal requires elucidating the structures and chemical stabilities of the major DNA-AGEs in order to identify products most likely to contribute to genomic instability in vivo (Aim 1). To study the genotoxic pathology of DNA-AGEs in obesity, we will generate animal models of metabolic syndrome and measure tissue-specific mutations and DNA-AGE levels as a function of NER status (Aim 2). To more quantitatively define the decline in DNA repair capacity due to metabolic disease, we will measure the repair kinetics of DNA-AGEs using extracts prepared from obese/diabetic mice at progressive stages of disease (Aim 3). Successful implementation of these Specific Aims will contribute greatly toward our understanding of this link between cancer and a molecular change induced by a pathologic consequence of obesity. Moreover, we anticipate that enhancing our knowledge of hyperglycemia-induced DNA-AGE pathology will have a significant overall impact on human health and stimulate the development of novel treatments to reduce the risk of specific cancers associated with obesity.

Public Health Relevance

Obesity significantly increases the risk for specific cancers, although the mechanisms involved are not well defined. We hypothesize that increased mutagenesis/carcinogenesis in obesity has a significant contribution due to the accumulation of genotoxic DNA-AGEs, formed as a consequence of hyperglycemia in conjuction with significant attenuation of DNA repair capacity resulting from metabolic disease. The animal models of obesity/diabetes we will use in this investigation will clarify the role of DNA-AGEs and DNA repair mechanisms in mutagenesis that should lead to direct relevance to human health by directing new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to obesity-related cancers.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-OBT-H (03))
Program Officer
Okano, Paul
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
City of Hope/Beckman Research Institute
United States
Zip Code
Jandial, Rahul; Neman, Josh; Lim, Punnajit P et al. (2018) Inhibition of GLO1 in Glioblastoma Multiforme Increases DNA-AGEs, Stimulates RAGE Expression, and Inhibits Brain Tumor Growth in Orthotopic Mouse Models. Int J Mol Sci 19:
Tran, Thai Q; Ishak Gabra, Mari B; Lowman, Xazmin H et al. (2017) Glutamine deficiency induces DNA alkylation damage and sensitizes cancer cells to alkylating agents through inhibition of ALKBH enzymes. PLoS Biol 15:e2002810
Jaramillo, Richard; Shuck, Sarah C; Chan, Yin S et al. (2017) DNA Advanced Glycation End Products (DNA-AGEs) Are Elevated in Urine and Tissue in an Animal Model of Type 2 Diabetes. Chem Res Toxicol 30:689-698
Lacoste, Sandrine; Bhatia, Smita; Chen, Yanjun et al. (2017) Autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in lymphoma patients is associated with a decrease in the double strand break repair capacity of peripheral blood lymphocytes. PLoS One 12:e0171473
Ciminera, Alexandra K; Jandial, Rahul; Termini, John (2017) Metabolic advantages and vulnerabilities in brain metastases. Clin Exp Metastasis 34:401-410
Teo, Ruijie D; Termini, John; Gray, Harry B (2016) Lanthanides: Applications in Cancer Diagnosis and Therapy. J Med Chem 59:6012-24
You, Changjun; Wang, Pengcheng; Nay, Stephanie L et al. (2016) Roles of Aag, Alkbh2, and Alkbh3 in the Repair of Carboxymethylated and Ethylated Thymidine Lesions. ACS Chem Biol 11:1332-8
Lee, Young-Ho; Liu, Xiyong; Qiu, Fuming et al. (2015) HP1? is a biomarker for breast cancer prognosis and PARP inhibitor therapy. PLoS One 10:e0121207
Liu, Liang; Zhou, Weiying; Cheng, Chun-Ting et al. (2014) TGF? induces ""BRCAness"" and sensitivity to PARP inhibition in breast cancer by regulating DNA-repair genes. Mol Cancer Res 12:1597-609
Termini, John; Neman, Josh; Jandial, Rahul (2014) Role of the neural niche in brain metastatic cancer. Cancer Res 74:4011-5

Showing the most recent 10 out of 11 publications