Publications of Elettra BIANCHI
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See detailLa vignette diagnostique de l’étudiant. Ataxie subaiguë et chutes chez une patiente de 62 ans
JEDIDI, Zayd ULiege; Moonen, Gustave ULiege; Bianchi, Elettra ULiege et al

in Revue Médicale de Liège (2020), 75(3), 190-198

ésumé : Nous discutons la démarche sémiologique et diagnostique d’un cas d’ataxie chez une patiente de 62 ans, indemne de tout antécédent médical significatif. A l’occasion de cette vignette diagnostique ... [more ▼]

ésumé : Nous discutons la démarche sémiologique et diagnostique d’un cas d’ataxie chez une patiente de 62 ans, indemne de tout antécédent médical significatif. A l’occasion de cette vignette diagnostique, nous insistons sur trois aspects : 1. La nécessité de contextualiser la démarche pour éviter d’évoquer des diagnostics différentiels irréalistes; 2. La nécessité de choisir les examens complémentaires pertinents en les hiérarchisant en fonction de la probabilité de contribuer au diagnostic, de leur invasivité et de leur disponibilité, y compris de leur coût et 3. Le caractère évolutif de la démarche diagnostique qu’il faut pouvoir remettre en question au fil des informations que fournissent l’évolution du patient et les résultats des investigations. [less ▲]

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See detailTGFBI, an ECM interacting protein, enhances glycolysis and promotes pancreatic cancer cell migration
Costanza, Brunella ULiege; Rademaker, Gilles ULiege; Tiamiou, Assia ULiege et al

in International Journal of Cancer (2019)

Pancreatic cancer (PDAC) remains a deadly malignancy with no efficient therapy available up-to-date. Glycolysis is the main provider of energetic substrates to sustain cancer dissemination of PDAC ... [more ▼]

Pancreatic cancer (PDAC) remains a deadly malignancy with no efficient therapy available up-to-date. Glycolysis is the main provider of energetic substrates to sustain cancer dissemination of PDAC. Accordingly, altering the glycolytic pathway is foreseen as a sound approach to trigger pancreatic cancer regression. Here, we show for the first time that high TGFBI expression in PDAC patients is associated with a poor outcome. We demonstrate that, although usually secreted by stromal cells, PDAC cells synthesize and secrete TGFBI in quantity correlated with their migratory capacity. Mechanistically, we show that TGFBI activates FAK signaling pathway through its binding to integrin αVβ5, leading to a significant enhancement of glycolysis and to the acquisition of an invasive phenotype. Finally, we show that TGFBI silencing significantly inhibits PDAC tumor development in a chick chorioallantoic membrane assay model. Our study highlights TGFBI as an oncogenic ECM interacting protein that bears the potential to serve as a target for new anti-PDAC therapeutic strategies. [less ▲]

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See detailOligo-astrocytoma in LZTR1-related Noonan syndrome.
JACQUINET, Adeline ULiege; Bonnard, Adeline; Capri, Yline et al

in European Journal of Medical Genetics (2019)

Mutations in LZTR1, already known to be causal in familial schwannomatosis type 2, have been recently involved in a small proportion of patients with autosomal dominant and autosomal recessive Noonan ... [more ▼]

Mutations in LZTR1, already known to be causal in familial schwannomatosis type 2, have been recently involved in a small proportion of patients with autosomal dominant and autosomal recessive Noonan syndrome. LZTR1 is also a driver gene in non syndromal glioblastoma. We report a 26-year-old patient with typical Noonan syndrome, and the dominantly transmitted c.850C>T (p.(Arg284Cys)) variant in LZTR1. An oligoastrocytoma was diagnosed in the patient at the age of 22 years; recurrence of the tumor occurred at age 26, as a ganglioblastoma. The patient had been transiently treated with growth hormone between ages 15 and 17. Considering the implication of LZTR1 in sporadic tumors of the nervous system, we hypothesize that gliomas are a possible complication of LZTR1-related Noonan syndrome. This report also supports a possible link between occurrence of a cerebral tumor in Noonan syndrome and a previous treatment with growth hormone. [less ▲]

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See detailNew role of osteopontin in DNA repair and impact on human glioblastoma radiosensitivity
Henry, Aurélie ULiege; Nokin, Marie-Julie ULiege; Leroi, Natacha ULiege et al

in Oncotarget (2016)

Glioblastoma (GBM) represents the most aggressive and common solid human brain tumor. We have recently demonstrated the importance of osteopontin (OPN) in the acquisition/maintenance of stemness ... [more ▼]

Glioblastoma (GBM) represents the most aggressive and common solid human brain tumor. We have recently demonstrated the importance of osteopontin (OPN) in the acquisition/maintenance of stemness characters and tumorigenicity of glioma initiating cells. Consultation of publicly available TCGA database indicated that high OPN expression correlated with poor survival in GBM patients. In this study, we explored the role of OPN in GBM radioresistance using an OPN-depletion strategy in U87-MG, U87-MG vIII and U251-MG human GBM cell lines. Clonogenic experiments showed that OPN-depleted GBM cells were sensitized to irradiation. In comet assays, these cells displayed higher amounts of unrepaired DNA fragments post-irradiation when compared to control. We next evaluated the phosphorylation of key markers of DNA double-strand break repair pathway. Activating phosphorylation of H2AX, ATM and 53BP1 was signi cantly decreased in OPN-de cient cells. The addition of recombinant OPN prior to irradiation rescued phospho-H2AX foci formation thus establishing a new link between DNA repair and OPN expression in GBM cells. Finally, OPN knockdown improved mice survival and induced a signi cant reduction of heterotopic human GBM xenograft when combined with radiotherapy. This study reveals a new function of OPN in DNA damage repair process post-irradiation thus further con rming its major role in GBM aggressive disease. [less ▲]

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See detailOsteopontin predicts radiotherapy response of glioblastoma patients : new role in DNA damage repair
Henry, Aurélie ULiege; Nokin, Marie-Julie ULiege; Leroi, Natacha ULiege et al

Conference (2016, March 22)

- Introduction: Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most aggressive and common solid human brain tumor. Because of GBM heterogeneity, location and aggressiveness, none of the available treatment is curative. These ... [more ▼]

- Introduction: Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most aggressive and common solid human brain tumor. Because of GBM heterogeneity, location and aggressiveness, none of the available treatment is curative. These treatments include maximal surgical resection, radiotherapy and concomitant or adjuvant chemotherapy with Temozolomide. However, the prognosis of adult patients with GBM remains poor and the survival outcome after treatment does not exceed 15 months. GBM-composing cells have developed many strategies to counteract these current therapies. Among the wide hallmarks acquired to survive, high osteopontin (OPN) expression correlates with lower overall and disease-free/relapse-free survival in all tumors combined, as well in brain cancer. Our recent study (Lamour V and Henry A, IJC 2015) has demonstrated the role of OPN in the tumorigenicity of glioblastoma cells and its importance in the maintenance of the stem characters. In the continuation of this work, our recent studies focused on the potential role of OPN in the resistance of GBM cells to radiotherapy and its potential implication in the initiation of Double Strand Breaks (DSBs) repair mechanisms. - Aims: In the context of this study, different GBM cell lines (U251-MG, U87-MG and U87 Viii) were used to assess the role of OPN in the initiation of the DSBs repair mechanism after an exposure to gamma-irradiation. - Methods and results: We performed the transient transfection of different GBM cell lines (U251-MG, U87-MG and U87-MG overexpressing EGFR VIII) with siRNAs specifically directed against OPN. After irradiation, all these OPN-depleted cells consistently showed a lower induction of γ–H2AX compared to control (irrelevant siRNA) as evidenced by western blot and immunofluorescence techniques. Thereafter, clonogenic assays allowed to prove that the survival of OPN-depleted cells was affected after an exposure to irradiation. To assess the importance of OPN expression in the response to radiotherapy, an heterotopic xenograft model was used. In brief, IPTG-inducible U87 shOPN clones were injected subcutaneously in NOD-SCID mice and were allowed to form a tumor. When average tumor volume reached a predetermined size range, mice were treated (or not) with IPTG by intraperitoneal injection during five days. At the end of the treatment, tumors were selectively exposed to gamma-irradiation by using a small animal irradiator X-RAD 225Cx (Precision X-Ray Inc., North Branford, CT). One week later, mice were sacrificed and tumors were measured. In this pilot study, we observed that mice in which the tumor was depleted in OPN displayed a slight regression in the tumor growth compared to mice that received radiotherapy alone (no IPTG), where the tumor volume remained constant. - Conclusions: Taken together, these preliminary data meet the fact that OPN is important in the response of GBM to radiotherapy. The in vitro results converge to the fact that OPN might be implicated in the initiation of the DSBs repair following irradiation. Currently, we would like to investigate this hypothesis in vivo but also to check the effect of OPN depletion combined to radiotherapy on the survival of mice in an orthotopic xenograft model. [less ▲]

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See detailHDAC7 inhibition resets STAT3 tumorigenic activity in human glioblastoma independently of EGFR and PTEN: new opportunities for selected targeted therapies
Peixoto, Paul ULiege; Blomme, Arnaud ULiege; Costanza, Brunella ULiege et al

in Oncogene (2016)

To date, the mutational status of EGFR and PTEN has been shown as relevant for favoring pro- or anti-tumor functions of STAT3 in human glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). We have screened genomic data from 154 ... [more ▼]

To date, the mutational status of EGFR and PTEN has been shown as relevant for favoring pro- or anti-tumor functions of STAT3 in human glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). We have screened genomic data from 154 patients and have identified a strong positive correlation between STAT3 and HDAC7 expression. In the current work we show the existence of a subpopulation of patients overexpressing HDAC7 and STAT3 that has particularly poor clinical outcome. Surprisingly, the somatic mutation rate of both STAT3 and HDAC7 was insignificant in GBM comparing with EGFR, PTEN or TP53. Depletion of HDAC7 in a range of GBM cells induced the expression of tyrosine kinase JAK1 and the tumor suppressor AKAP12. Both proteins synergistically sustained the activity of STAT3 by inducing its phosphorylation (JAK1) and protein expression (AKAP12). In absence of HDAC7, activated STAT3 was responsible for significant imbalance of secreted pro-/anti-angiogenic factors. This inhibited the migration and sprouting of endothelial cells in paracrine fashion in vitro as well as angiogenesis in vivo. In a murine model of GBM, induced HDAC7-silencing decreased the tumor burden by threefold. The current data show for the first time that silencing HDAC7 can reset the tumor suppressor activity of STAT3, independently of the EGFR/PTEN/TP53 background of the GBM. This effect could be exploited to overcome tumor heterogeneity and provide a new rationale behind the development of specific HDAC7 inhibitors for clinical use. [less ▲]

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See detailHuman cytomegalovirus and primary intracranial tumours: Frequency of tumour infection and lack of correlation with systemic immune anti-viral responses
BIANCHI, Elettra ULiege; RONCARATI, Patrick ULiege; HOUGRAND, Olivier ULiege et al

in Neuropathology and Applied Neurobiology (2015), 41(2), 29-40

Aims: Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a ubiquitous beta human herpesvirus able to influence infected cell survival and proliferation and to modulate the host immune response. As there is accumulating ... [more ▼]

Aims: Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a ubiquitous beta human herpesvirus able to influence infected cell survival and proliferation and to modulate the host immune response. As there is accumulating evidence that HCMV is detected in primary intracranial astrocytic tumours, in this study we looked for the presence of HCMV in intracranial tumours and tried to correlate this eventual presence with the anti-HCMV systemic immunoreactivity and with the detection of HCMV in peripheral blood. Methods: In this study, we analysed 43 glioblastomas (GBM), 14 oligodendrogliomas (OL) and 20 meningiomas (MG) by immunofluorescence (IF) targeting HCMV immediate early antigen (IE1) and by nested PCR (nPCR) amplifying HCMV glycoprotein B (gB). Results: Detection of IE1 by IF showed the presence of HCMV in 70% of GBM, 57% of OL and 85% of MG, in contrast to gB nPCR, which detected HCMV in only 50% of GBM, 38% of OL and 46% of MG. Unexpectedly, HCMV DNA and antigens were detected within GBM, OL and MG of patients that exhibit negative viral serology. More surprisingly, PCR on the peripheral blood did not detect HCMV in patients with a HCMV-positive tumour. Conclusions: Our results are in agreement with previous observations demonstrating HCMV in glial tumours and highlight the presence of HCMV in meningiomas. We also showed that anti-HCMV specific systemic immunoreactivity and detection of HCMV in peripheral blood are not predictive of HCMV presence in primary intracranial tumours. © 2014 British Neuropathological Society. [less ▲]

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See detailAsporin Is a Fibroblast-Derived TGF-beta1 Inhibitor and a Tumor Suppressor Associated with Good Prognosis in Breast Cancer.
Maris, Pamela; Blomme, Arnaud ULiege; Palacios, Ana Perez et al

in PLoS Medicine (2015), 12(9), 1001871

BACKGROUND: Breast cancer is a leading malignancy affecting the female population worldwide. Most morbidity is caused by metastases that remain incurable to date. TGF-beta1 has been identified as a key ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Breast cancer is a leading malignancy affecting the female population worldwide. Most morbidity is caused by metastases that remain incurable to date. TGF-beta1 has been identified as a key driving force behind metastatic breast cancer, with promising therapeutic implications. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Employing immunohistochemistry (IHC) analysis, we report, to our knowledge for the first time, that asporin is overexpressed in the stroma of most human breast cancers and is not expressed in normal breast tissue. In vitro, asporin is secreted by breast fibroblasts upon exposure to conditioned medium from some but not all human breast cancer cells. While hormone receptor (HR) positive cells cause strong asporin expression, triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) cells suppress it. Further, our findings show that soluble IL-1beta, secreted by TNBC cells, is responsible for inhibiting asporin in normal and cancer-associated fibroblasts. Using recombinant protein, as well as a synthetic peptide fragment, we demonstrate the ability of asporin to inhibit TGF-beta1-mediated SMAD2 phosphorylation, epithelial to mesenchymal transition, and stemness in breast cancer cells. In two in vivo murine models of TNBC, we observed that tumors expressing asporin exhibit significantly reduced growth (2-fold; p = 0.01) and metastatic properties (3-fold; p = 0.045). A retrospective IHC study performed on human breast carcinoma (n = 180) demonstrates that asporin expression is lowest in TNBC and HER2+ tumors, while HR+ tumors have significantly higher asporin expression (4-fold; p = 0.001). Assessment of asporin expression and patient outcome (n = 60; 10-y follow-up) shows that low protein levels in the primary breast lesion significantly delineate patients with bad outcome regardless of the tumor HR status (area under the curve = 0.87; 95% CI 0.78-0.96; p = 0.0001). Survival analysis, based on gene expression (n = 375; 25-y follow-up), confirmed that low asporin levels are associated with a reduced likelihood of survival (hazard ratio = 0.58; 95% CI 0.37-0.91; p = 0.017). Although these data highlight the potential of asporin to serve as a prognostic marker, confirmation of the clinical value would require a prospective study on a much larger patient cohort. CONCLUSIONS: Our data show that asporin is a stroma-derived inhibitor of TGF-beta1 and a tumor suppressor in breast cancer. High asporin expression is significantly associated with less aggressive tumors, stratifying patients according to the clinical outcome. Future pre-clinical studies should consider options for increasing asporin expression in TNBC as a promising strategy for targeted therapy. [less ▲]

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See detailTriple negative tumors accumulate significantly less methylglyoxal specific adducts than other human breast cancer subtypes
Chiavarina, Barbara ULiege; Nokin, Marie-Julie ULiege; Durieux, Florence ULiege et al

in Oncotarget (2014)

Metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes are associated with increased risk of breast cancer development and progression. Methylglyoxal (MG), a glycolysis by- product, is generated through a non-enzymatic ... [more ▼]

Metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes are associated with increased risk of breast cancer development and progression. Methylglyoxal (MG), a glycolysis by- product, is generated through a non-enzymatic reaction from triose-phosphate intermediates. This dicarbonyl compound is highly reactive and contributes to the accumulation of advanced glycation end products. In this study, we analyzed the accumulation of Arg-pyrimidine, a MG-arginine adduct, in human breast adenocarcinoma and we observed a consistent increase of Arg-pyrimidine in cancer cells when compared with the non-tumoral counterpart. Further immunohistochemical comparative analysis of breast cancer subtypes revealed that triple negative lesions exhibited low accumulation of Arg-pyrimidine compared with other subtypes. Interestingly, the activity of glyoxalase 1 (Glo-1), an enzyme that detoxifies MG, was significantly higher in triple negative than in other subtype lesions, suggesting that these aggressive tumors are able to develop an efficient response against dicarbonyl stress. Using breast cancer cell lines, we substantiated these clinical observations by showing that, in contrast to triple positive, triple negative cells induced Glo-1 expression and activity in response to MG treatment. This is the first report that Arg- pyrimidine adduct accumulation is a consistent event in human breast cancer with a differential detection between triple negative and other breast cancer subtypes. [less ▲]

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See detailAccessibilome of human glioblastoma: collagen-VI-alpha-1 is a new target and a marker of poor outcome
Turtoi, Andrei ULiege; Blomme, Arnaud ULiege; BIANCHI, Elettra ULiege et al

in Journal of Proteome Research (2014), 13(12), 5660-5669

Functional targeted therapy has unfortunately failed to improve the outcome of glioblastoma patients. Success stories evidenced by the use of antibody-drug conjugates in other tumor types are encouraging ... [more ▼]

Functional targeted therapy has unfortunately failed to improve the outcome of glioblastoma patients. Success stories evidenced by the use of antibody-drug conjugates in other tumor types are encouraging, but targets specific to glioblastoma and accessible through the bloodstream remain scarce. In the current work, we have identified and characterized novel and accessible proteins using an innovative proteomic approach on six human glioblastomas; the corresponding data have been deposited in the PRIDE database identifier PXD001398. Among several clusters of uniquely expressed proteins, we highlight collagen-VI-alpha-1 (COL6A1) as a highly expressed tumor biomarker with low levels in most normal tissues. Immunohistochemical analysis of glioma samples from 61 patients demonstrated that COL6A1 is a significant and consistent feature of high-grade glioma. Deposits of COL6A1 were evidenced in the perivascular regions of the tumor-associated vasculature and in glioma cells found in pseudopalisade structures. Retrospective analysis of public gene-expression data sets from over 300 glioma patients demonstrated a significant correlation of poor patient outcome and high COL6A1 expression. In a proof-of-concept study, we use chicken chorioallantoic membrane in vivo model to show that COL6A1 is a reachable target for IV-injected antibodies. The present data warrant further development of human COL6A1 antibodies for assessing the quantitative biodistribution in the preclinical tumor models. [less ▲]

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See detailMitochondrial encephalomyopathy with cytochrome c oxidase deficiency caused by a novel mutation in the MTCO1 gene.
Debray, François-Guillaume ULiege; Seneca, Sara; GONCE, Michel ULiege et al

in Mitochondrion (2014)

Cytochrome c oxidase (COX) deficiency is one of the most common respiratory chain deficiencies. A woman was presented at the age of 18y with acute loss of consciousness, non-convulsive status epilepticus ... [more ▼]

Cytochrome c oxidase (COX) deficiency is one of the most common respiratory chain deficiencies. A woman was presented at the age of 18y with acute loss of consciousness, non-convulsive status epilepticus, slow neurological deterioration, transient cortical blindness, exercise intolerance, muscle weakness, hearing loss, cataract and cognitive decline. Muscle biopsy revealed ragged-red fibers, COX negative fibers and a significant decreased activity of complex IV in a homogenate. Using next generation massive parallel sequencing of the mtDNA, a novel heteroplasmic mutation was identified in MTCO1, m.7402delC, causing frameshift and a premature termination codon. Single fiber PCR showed co-segregation of high mutant load in COX negative fibers. Mutation in mitochondrially encoded complex IV subunits should be considered in mitochondrial encephalomyopathies and COX negative fibers after the common mtDNA mutations have been excluded. [less ▲]

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See detailBone mass of the calvarium
SIMONI, Paolo ULiege; STULKO, Jennifer ULiege; BEN MUSTAPHA, Selma ULiege et al

in Skeletal Radiology (2013), 42

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See detailMyoferlin is a key regulator of EGFR activity in breast cancer.
Turtoi, Andrei ULiege; Blomme, Arnaud ULiege; Bellahcene, Akeila ULiege et al

in Cancer Research (2013), 73

Myoferlin is a member of the ferlin family of proteins that participate in plasma membrane fusion, repair and endocytosis. While some reports have implicated myoferlin in cancer, the extent of its ... [more ▼]

Myoferlin is a member of the ferlin family of proteins that participate in plasma membrane fusion, repair and endocytosis. While some reports have implicated myoferlin in cancer, the extent of its expression in and contributions to cancer are not well established. In this study, we show that myoferlin is overexpressed in human breast cancers and that it is has a critical role in controlling degradation of the EGFR after its activation and internalization in breast cancer cells. Myoferlin depletion blocked EGF-induced cell migration and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. Both effects were induced as a result of impaired degradation of phosphorylated EGFR via dysfunctional plasma membrane caveolae and alteration of caveolin homooligomerization. In parallel, myoferlin depletion reduced tumor development in a chicken chorioallantoic membrane xenograft model of human breast cancer. Considering the therapeutic significance of EGFR targeting, our findings identify myoferlin as an novel candidate function to target for future drug development. [less ▲]

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See detailUnusual presentation of osteopoikilosis.
Simoni, P.; Denut, J.; Ben Mustapha, S. et al

in JBR-BTR (2013), 96(6), 386-7

We present a case of osteopoikilosis in a 74-year-old woman with hip pain, presenting multiple osteoblastic lesions of the axial skeleton including an osteoblastic large lesion of her left femur. The ... [more ▼]

We present a case of osteopoikilosis in a 74-year-old woman with hip pain, presenting multiple osteoblastic lesions of the axial skeleton including an osteoblastic large lesion of her left femur. The imaging findings on X-rays and computed tomography are provided along with the discussion of the differential diagnosis on the basis of the recent literature. [less ▲]

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See detailMultifocal choroid plexus papilloma: a case report.
Scholsem, Martin; Scholtes, Félix ULiege; Robe, Pierre ULiege et al

in Clinical Neuropathology (2012), 31(6), 430-4

BACKGROUND: Multiple choroid plexus papillomas (CPPs) are rare. Usually, they correspond to villous hypertrophy or metastasis occurring during cerebrospinal dissemination. Multiple CPPs have rarely been ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Multiple choroid plexus papillomas (CPPs) are rare. Usually, they correspond to villous hypertrophy or metastasis occurring during cerebrospinal dissemination. Multiple CPPs have rarely been reported as synchronous tumors. CASE REPORT: Three synchronous CPPs were resected in a 59-year-old female 6 years after their first imaging description. Pathology showed mucus-producing CPP in all 3, 1 of the 3 presenting some signs of atypia. No p53 or hSNF5/INI1 mutation, or signs of polyoma viruses infection were found. CONCLUSION: Although no clear cause for the multifocality was found, the simultaneous presence of the three tumors and their benign histology suggest that they were synchronous and not metastatic. The issue of differentiating synchronous CPPs from metastatic CPP is discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailDetection of antigenic heterogeneity in feline coronavirus nucleocapsid in feline pyogranulomatous meningoencephalitis.
Poncelet, Luc; Coppens, Angélique; Peeters, Dominique ULiege et al

in Veterinary Pathology (2008), 45(2)

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