Degradation of CCNK/CDK12 is a druggable vulnerability of colorectal cancer.
Novel treatment options for metastatic colorectal cancer (CRC) are urgently needed to improve patient outcome. Here, we screen a library of non-characterized small molecules against a heterogeneous collection of patient-derived CRC spheroids. By prioritizing compounds with inhibitory activity in a subset of-but not all-spheroid cultures, NCT02 is identified as a candidate with minimal risk of non-specific toxicity. Mechanistically, we show that NCT02 acts as molecular glue that induces ubiquitination of cyclin K (CCNK) and proteasomal degradation of CCNK and its complex partner CDK12. Knockout of CCNK or CDK12 decreases proliferation of CRC cells in vitro and tumor growth in vivo. Interestingly, sensitivity to pharmacological CCNK/CDK12 degradation is associated with TP53 deficiency and consensus molecular subtype 4 in vitro and in patient-derived xenografts. We thus demonstrate the efficacy of targeted CCNK/CDK12 degradation for a CRC subset, highlighting the potential of drug-induced proteolysis for difficult-to-treat types of cancer.
Publication Date: 2021-07-22
Journal: Cell reports
TP53 codon 72 polymorphism and type 2 diabetes: a case-control study in South Indian population.
TP53 functions primarily as a tumor suppressor, controlling a myriad of signalling pathways that prevent a cell from undergoing malignant transformation. This tumor suppressive function requires an activation and stabilization of TP53 in response to cell stressors. However, besides its cancer-preventive functions, TP53 is also known to be involved in diverse cellular processes including metabolism, reproduction, stem cell renewal and development. Indeed, several lines of evidence strongly suggest that TP53 plays crucial role in diabetes. A number of studies have evaluated the association of genetic alterations (single nucleotide variations) in TP53 gene with the development of diabetes. However, the results have not been consistent. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the C/G polymorphism at codon 72 (Pro72/Arg72), located in exon 4 of TP53, is associated with type 2 diabetes in South Indian population. A total of 74 type 2 diabetic patients and 54 non-diabetic subjects were screened. None of the three genotypes, namely C/C (Pro/Pro), C/G (Pro/Arg), and G/G (Arg/Arg) was found to be significantly associated with type 2 diabetes in our study group. The findings of this study indicate that TP53 codon 72 polymorphism is not associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes in South Indian population. Further studies with a large cohort size would be necessary to corroborate the observations of this study. Nevertheless, this study represents the first genetic analysis of TP53 variants in South Indian type 2 diabetic patients.
Publication Date: 2021-06-29
Journal: Molecular biology reports
Genomic Sequencing and Insight into Clinical Heterogeneity and Prognostic Pathway Genes in Patients with Metastatic Colorectal Cancer.
An understanding of signaling pathways has not been fully incorporated into prognostication and therapeutic options. We evaluated the hypothesis that information about cancer-related signaling pathways can improve prognostic stratification and explain some of the clinical heterogeneity in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer.
We analyzed prognostic relevance of signaling pathways in patients undergoing resection of colorectal liver metastases (CLM) from 2004-2017, and clinical actionability of gene alterations in 7 signaling pathways: p53, Wnt, RTK-RAS, PI3K, TGFβ, Notch, and cell cycle. To assess the wide applicability, the results were validated in an external retrospective cohort including patients with unresectable metastatic colorectal cancer.
Of 579 patients, the numbers of patients with pathway alterations were as follows: p53, n = 420 (72.5%); Wnt, 340 (58.7%); RTK-RAS, 333 (57.5%); PI3K, 110 (19.0%); TGFβ, 65 (11.2%); Notch, 41 (7.1%); and cell cycle, 15 (2.6%). More than 80% of alterations in each pathway occurred in a single predominant gene TP53, APC, KRAS, PIK3CA, FBXW7, and RB1 in p53, Wnt, RTK-RAS, PI3K, Notch, and cell cycle pathways, respectively. Alterations of 4 pathways (p53, RTK-RAS, TGFβ, and Notch) and corresponding predominant genes (TP53, RAS/BRAF, SMAD4, and FBXW7) were significantly associated with worse overall survival (OS), and alterations of Wnt pathway (APC) were associated with better OS in the median follow-up duration of 3.8 years. Similarly, in the external cohort, alterations of p53 (TP53) and RTK-RAS (RAS/BRAF) were significantly associated with worse OS, whereas alteration of Wnt (APC) was associated with better OS in the median follow-up duration of 2.6 years.
Genomic sequencing provides insights into clinical heterogeneity and permits finer prognostic stratification in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer.
Publication Date: 2021-06-11
Journal: Journal of the American College of Surgeons
A Clinicopathological Study of Young-onset Hepatocellular Carcinoma.
The aim of this study was to describe the clinicopathological features of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) diagnosed at 40 years of age or below.
Expression of CK19, Glypican-3 and β-catenin was assessed in clinical samples by immunohistochemistry (IHC). IHC expression was correlated with clinicopathological parameters. Hotspot mutations in TP53 gene were analyzed by sequencing.
Thirty-six cases were included with a male to female ratio of 3:1. Eighty percent of cases were associated with chronic hepatitis B infection. CK19 and GPC3 were expressed in 61% and 56% of cases, respectively. Only one case demonstrated β-catenin over-expression. TP53 hotspot mutation was identified in 4 cases. Number of tumor nodules, vascular invasion, and preoperative serum AFP level were associated with prognosis.
A higher CK19 expression rate was observed in our young-onset HCC cohort, whereas β-catenin pathway activation and TP53 gene mutation events were less frequent. Conventional clinicopathological parameters remain predictors of survival.
Publication Date: 2021-06-05
Journal: Anticancer research
Molecular predictors of the outcome of paclitaxel plus carboplatin neoadjuvant therapy in high-grade serous ovarian cancer patients.
Patients with advanced high-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) are usually treated with paclitaxel and carboplatin; however, predictive markers for this drug combination are unknown.
Tumor samples from 71 consecutive HGSOC patients, who received neoadjuvant chemotherapy with paclitaxel and carboplatin, were subjected to molecular analysis.
BRCA1/2 germline mutation carriers (n = 22) had longer treatment-free interval (TFI) than non-carriers (n = 49) (9.5 months vs. 3.8 months; P = 0.007). Fifty-one HGSOCs had sufficient quality of tumor DNA for the next-generation sequencing (NGS) analysis by the SeqCap EZ CNV/LOH Backbone Design panel. All 13 tumors obtained from BRCA1/2 germline mutation carriers and 12 sporadic HGSOCs showed a high number of evenly spread chromosomal breaks, which was defined as a BRCAness phenotype; median TFI for this combined group approached 9.5 months. The remaining 26 HGSOCs had similarly high global LOH score (above 20%); however, in contrast to BRCAness tumors, LOH involved large chromosomal segments; these patients had significantly lower TFI (3.7 months; P = 0.006). All patients with CCNE1 amplification (n = 7), TP53 R175H substitution (n = 6), and RB1 mutation (n = 4) had poor response to paclitaxel plus carboplatin.
This study describes a cost-efficient method of detecting the BRCAness phenotype, which is compatible with the laboratory-scale NGS equipment. Some molecular predictors allow the identification of potential non-responders to paclitaxel plus carboplatin, who may need to be considered for other treatment options.
Publication Date: 2021-06-04
Journal: Cancer chemotherapy and pharmacology
Malignant plasmacytes in bone marrow detected by flow cytometry as a predictor for the risk stratification system of multiple myeloma.
Multiple myeloma (MM) is a clonal disorder characterized by the proliferation of plasma cells and their accumulation within the bone marrow (BM). The flow cytometric analysis is an essential method for the hematological diseases because of high sensitivity.
This study evaluates the indication role of malignant plasmacytes (PCs) in BM detected by flow cytometry for the risk stratification of MM.
Whole BM samples from 92 newly diagnosed MM patients were included in the study. We collected 10
In this study, patients were stratified according to different baseline characteristics and the median ratio of the malignant PCs were compared. The significant statistical differences (p < 0.05) were: Hb < 100 g/L versus ≥100 g/L; β2-microglobulin <3.5 mg/dL versus 3.5-5.5 mg/dL versus >5.5 mg/dL; LDH > 250 U/L versus LDH 250 U/L; ISS I versus ISS II versus ISS III; R-ISS I versus II versus III. The detailed data are showed in Table 2. The significant correlations were observed between the malignant PCs in BM and (Figure 1): plasma cell of biopsy, hemoglobin, β2-microglobulin, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), creatinine. "Double hit" or "triple hit" are defined as containing any two or three of the high risk cytogenetic abnormalities (t(4;14), t(14;16), t(14;20); del17q; TP53 mutation; 1q21 gain) by mSMAR. "Double or triple hit" had independently unfavorable significance for overall survival. As expected, the malignant PCs of "double or triple hit" group is significantly higher than the group B (one high risk genetic factor) and the group A (normal cytogenetic) (p < 0.0001 and p < 0.019).
Multiparametric flow cytometry is a highly sensitive method to identify and quantify malignant PCs. And the ratio of malignant PCs detected by MFC showed strongly correlation with the severity of the pathology of MM. Malignant PCs in BM detected by flow cytometry could be regarded as a predictor for the risk stratification system of MM. Thus, it should be considered applying in the routine evaluation of MM at diagnosis and after therapy.
Publication Date: 2021-06-01
Journal: Cytometry. Part B, Clinical cytometry
Clinical Contribution of Next-Generation Sequencing Multigene Panel Testing for BRCA Negative High-Risk Patients With Breast Cancer.
Breast cancer is the most common malignancy in women and thought to be hereditary in 10% of patients. Recent next-generation sequencing studies have increased the detection of pathogenic or likely pathogenic (P/LP) variants in genes other than BRCA1/2 in patients with breast cancer. This study evaluated pathogenic variants, likely pathogenic variants, and variants of unknown significance in 18 hereditary cancer susceptibility genes in patients with BRCA1/2-negative breast cancer.
This retrospective study included 188 high-risk BRCA1/2-negative patients with breast cancer tested with a multigene cancer panel using next-generation sequencing.
Among 188 proband cases, 18 variants in 21 patients (11.1%) were classified as P/LP in PALB2 (n = 6), CHEK2 (n = 5), MUTYH (n = 4), ATM (n = 3), TP53 (n = 2), BRIP1 (n = 1), and MSH2 (n = 1). Three novel P/LP variants were identified. An additional 28 variants were classified as variants of unknown significance and detected in 30 different patients (15.9%).
This is one of the largest study from Turkey to investigate the mutation spectrum in non-BRCA hereditary breast cancer susceptibility genes. A multigene panel test increased the likelihood of identifying a molecular diagnosis in patients with BRCA 1/2-negative breast cancer at risk for a hereditary breast cancer syndrome. More studies are needed to enable the clinical interpretation of these P/LP variants in hereditary patients with breast cancer.
Publication Date: 2021-05-14
Journal: Clinical breast cancer
Detection of oncogenic mutations in paired circulating tumor DNA and circulating tumor cells in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.
Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) or circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) may be used for diagnostic or prognostic purposes in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We aim to determine whether CTCs or ctDNA are suitable to determine oncogenic mutations in HCC patients.
Twenty-six mostly advanced HCC patients were enrolled. 30 mL peripheral blood from each patient was obtained. CellSearch system was used for CTC detection. A sequencing panel covering 14 cancer-relevant genes was used to identify oncogenic mutations. TERT promoter C228T and C250T mutations were determined by droplet digital PCR.
CTCs were detected in 27% (7/26) of subjects but at low numbers (median: 2 cells, range: 1-15 cells) and ctDNA in 77% (20/26) of patients. Mutations in ctDNA were identified in several genes: TERT promoter C228T (77%, 20/26), TP53 (23%, 6/26), CTNNB1 (12%, 3/26), PIK3CA (12%, 3/26) and NRAS (4%, 1/26). The TERT C228T mutation was present in all patients with one or more ctDNA mutations, or detectable CTCs. The TERT C228T and TP53 mutations detected in ctDNA were present at higher levels in matched primary HCC tumor tissue. The maximal variant allele frequency (VAF) of ctDNA was linearly correlated with largest tumor size and AFP level (Log10). CtDNA (or TERT C228T) positivity was associated with macrovascular invasion, and positivity of ctDNA (or TERT C228T) or CTCs (≥ 2) correlated with poor patient survival.
Oncogenic mutations could be detected in ctDNA from advanced HCC patients. CtDNA analysis may serve as a promising liquid biopsy to identify druggable mutations.
Publication Date: 2021-04-30
Journal: Translational oncology
Role of microRNAs in regulating cell proliferation, metastasis and chemoresistance and their applications as cancer biomarkers in small cell lung cancer.
Small cell lung cancer (SCLC), a smoking-related highly aggressive neuroendocrine cancer, is characterized by rapid cell proliferation, early metastatic dissemination, and early relapse due to chemoresistance to first-line platinum-doublet chemotherapy. Genomically, SCLC tumors show nearly universal loss of TP53 and RB1 tumor suppressor genes, while gene expression signature classifies them into 4 distinct subgroups based on the expression patterns of lineage transcription factors - ASCL1/ASH1, NEUROD1, YAP-1, and POU2F3. Due to the lack of targetable molecular alterations and clinically useful diagnostic, prognostic and predictive biomarker, there is insignificant progress in the therapeutic management of SCLC patients. Numerous studies have shown a significant involvement of non-coding RNAs in the regulation of cell proliferation, invasion and migration, apoptosis, metastasis, and chemoresistance in various human cancers. In this review, we comprehensively discuss the role of microRNAs (miRNAs) in regulating the aforementioned biological process in SCLC. For this, we searched the scientific literature and selected studies that have evaluated the role of miRNAs in the disease pathogenesis or as a cancer biomarker in SCLC. Our review suggests that several miRNAs are involved in the pathogenesis of SCLC mainly by regulating cell proliferation, metastasis, and chemoresistance. Few studies have also demonstrated the clinical utility of miRNAs in monitoring response to chemotherapy as well as in predicting survival outcomes. However, more in-depth mechanistic studies utilizing in vivo models and multicentric studies with larger patient cohorts are needed before the applications of miRNAs as therapeutic targets or as biomarkers are translated from the laboratory into clinics.
Publication Date: 2021-04-24
Journal: Biochimica et biophysica acta. Reviews on cancer
Genomic characterization of small cell carcinomas of the uterine cervix.
Small cell carcinoma (SCC) of the uterine cervix is a rare and aggressive form of neuroendocrine carcinoma, which resembles small cell lung cancer (SCLC) in its histology and poor survival rate. Here, we sought to define the genetic underpinning of SCCs of the uterine cervix and compare their mutational profiles with those of human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive head and neck squamous cell carcinomas, HPV-positive cervical carcinomas, and SCLCs using publicly available data. Using a combination of whole-exome and targeted massively parallel sequencing, we found that the nine uterine cervix SCCs, which were HPV18-positive (n = 8) or HPV16-positive (n = 1), harbored a low mutation burden, few copy number alterations, and other than TP53 in two cases no recurrently mutated genes. The majority of mutations were likely passenger missense mutations, and only few affected previously described cancer-related genes. Using RNA-sequencing, we identified putative viral integration sites on 18q12.3 and on 8p22 in two SCCs of the uterine cervix. The overall nonsilent mutation rate of uterine cervix SCCs was significantly lower than that of SCLCs, HPV-driven cervical adeno- and squamous cell carcinomas, or HPV-positive head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. Unlike SCLCs, which are reported to harbor almost universal TP53 and RB1 mutations and a dominant tobacco smoke-related signature 4, uterine cervix SCCs rarely harbored mutations affecting these genes (2/9, 22% TP53; 0% RB1) and displayed a dominant aging (67%) or APOBEC mutational signature (17%), akin to HPV-driven cancers, including cervical adeno- and squamous cell carcinomas and head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. Taken together, in contrast to SCLCs, which are characterized by highly recurrent TP53 and RB1 alterations, uterine cervix SCCs were positive for HPV leading to inactivation of the suppressors p53 and RB, suggesting that these SCCs are convergent phenotypes.
Publication Date: 2021-04-09
Journal: Molecular oncology
Selective drug combination vulnerabilities in STAT3- and TP53-mutant malignant NK cells.
Mature natural killer (NK) cell neoplasms are rare but very aggressive types of cancers. With currently available treatments, they have a very poor prognosis and, as such, are an example of group of cancers in which the development of effective precision therapies is needed. Using both short- and long-term drug sensitivity testing, we explored novel ways to target NK-cell neoplasms by combining the clinically approved JAK inhibitor ruxolitinib with other targeted agents. We profiled 7 malignant NK-cell lines in drug sensitivity screens and identified that these exhibit differential drug sensitivities based on their genetic background. In short-term assays, various classes of drugs combined with ruxolitinib seemed highly potent. Strikingly, resistance to most of these combinations emerged rapidly when explored in long-term assays. However, 4 combinations were identified that selectively eradicated the cancer cells and did not allow for development of resistance: ruxolitinib combined with the mouse double-minute 2 homolog (MDM2) inhibitor idasanutlin in STAT3-mutant, TP53 wild-type cell lines; ruxolitinib combined with the farnesyltransferase inhibitor tipifarnib in TP53-mutant cell lines; and ruxolitinib combined with either the glucocorticoid dexamethasone or the myeloid cell leukemia-1 (MCL-1) inhibitor S63845 but both without a clear link to underlying genetic features. In conclusion, using a new drug sensitivity screening approach, we identified drug combinations that selectively target mature NK-cell neoplasms and do not allow for development of resistance, some of which can be applied in a genetically stratified manner.
Publication Date: 2021-04-02
Journal: Blood advances
Extended gene panel testing in lobular breast cancer.
Lobular breast cancer (LBC) accounts for ~ 15% of breast cancer. Here, we studied the frequency of pathogenic germline variants (PGVs) in an extended panel of genes in women affected with LBC.
302 women with LBC and 1567 without breast cancer were tested for BRCA1/2 PGVs. A subset of 134 LBC affected women who tested negative for BRCA1/2 PGVs underwent extended screening, including: ATM, CDH1, CHEK2, NBN, PALB2, PTEN, RAD50, RAD51D, and TP53.
35 PGVs were identified in the group with LBC, of which 22 were in BRCA1/2. Ten actionable PGVs were identified in additional genes (ATM(4), CDH1(1), CHEK2(1), PALB2(2) and TP53(2)). Overall, PGVs in three genes conferred a significant increased risk for LBC. Odds ratios (ORs) were: BRCA1: OR = 13.17 (95%CI 2.83-66.38; P = 0.0017), BRCA2: OR = 10.33 (95%CI 4.58-23.95; P < 0.0001); and ATM: OR = 8.01 (95%CI 2.52-29.92; P = 0.0053). We did not detect an increased risk of LBC for PALB2, CDH1 or CHEK2.
The overall PGV detection rate was 11.59%, with similar rates of BRCA1/2 (7.28%) PGVs as for other actionable PGVs (7.46%), indicating a benefit for extended panel genetic testing in LBC. We also report a previously unrecognised association of pathogenic variants in ATM with LBC.
Publication Date: 2021-03-26
Journal: Familial cancer
The utility of the Ion Torrent PGM next generation sequencing for analysis of the most commonly mutated genes among patients with colorectal cancer in India.
The requirement for the mutation analysis for Kirsten rat sarcoma viral oncogene (KRAS) in colorectal cancer (CRC) is rapidly increasing as it is a predictive biomarker and also, its absence signifies response to anti-epidermal growth factor receptor (anti-EGFR) antibody treatment. The aim of our study was to investigate the pathological diagnosis and distribution of KRAS mutations in colorectal cancer with the use of next generation sequencing platform (Ion Torrent).
A total of 56 CRC samples were tested to identify the genetic mutations, especially KRAS using the primers which included ~2800 COSMIC mutations of 50 oncogenes. Ion Torrent personal genome machine (semiconductor-based sequencing) was used for the sequencing and analysis. Along with KRAS, other 49 genes were also studied for COSMIC mutations.
KRAS mutation 25 (44.6%) had the highest frequency, followed by TP53 10 (17.9%) and PIK3CA mutation 4 (7.1%). Of all the KRAS mutations identified, mutations in codon 12 were most frequent followed by mutations in codon 13 and 61. The most frequent substitution was glycine to aspartate mutation in codon 12 (p.Gly12Asp) followed by glycine to valine (p.Gly12Val). Combinations of mutations were also studied. Our study revealed that seven cases (12.5%) had both KRAS and TP53 mutations (highest of all the combinations).
The analysis of KRAS mutation frequency and its mutational subtype analysis in human CRCs by using semiconductor-based platform in routine clinical practices have been performed in Indian population. The findings were similar to earlier published reports from the Western literature.
Publication Date: 2021-03-24
Journal: Indian journal of cancer
Mucin 4 mutation is associated with tumor mutation burden and promotes antitumor immunity in colon cancer patients.
At present, immunotherapy is widely used for different mismatch repair (dMMR) or highly microsatellite instability (MSI-H) colorectal cancer patients, and tumor mutation burden (TMB) is a valuable independent predictor of response to immunotherapy. However, specific gene mutations and their relationship with TMB and tumor-infiltrating immune cells in colon cancer remains unclear. In the present study, we analyzed somatic mutation data of colon cancer from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC) datasets, and found that 17 frequently mutated genes were occurred in both cohorts, including APC, TP53, TNN, KRAS, MUC16, MUC4 (mucin 4), SYNE1, FLG, FAT4, OBSCN, FAT3, RYR2, PIK3CA, FBXW7, DNAH11, MUC5B and ZFHX4. Interestingly, only MUC4 mutation was associated with higher TMB and patient clinical prognosis among the 17 mutated genes. Moreover, according to gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) and the CIBERSORT algorithm, we revealed that MUC4 mutation activated signaling pathways involved in the immune system and enhanced the antitumor immune response. In conclusion, MUC4 may have important clinical implications for immune therapy of colon cancer.
Publication Date: 2021-03-15
Neoantigen-reactive T cells exhibit effective anti-tumor activity against colorectal cancer.
Neoantigens play a crucial role in cancer immunotherapy. However, the effectiveness and safety of neoantigen-based immunotherapies in patients with colorectal cancer (CRC), particularly in the Chinese population, have not been well studied. This study explored the feasibility and effectiveness of neoantigens in the treatment of CRC. Whole-exome sequencing (WES) and transcriptome sequencing were used to identify somatic mutations, RNA expression, and human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles. Neoantigen candidates were predicted, and immunogenicity was assessed. The neoantigens TSHZ3-L523P, RARA-R83H, TP53-R248W, EYA2-V333I, and NRAS-G12D from Patient 4 (PW4); TASP1-P161L, RAP1GAP-S215R, MOSPD1-V63I, and NAV2-D1973N from Patient 10 (PW10); and HAVCR2-F39V, SEC11A-R11L, SMPDL3B-T452M, LRFN3-R118Q, and ULK1-S248L from Patient 11 (HLA-A0201
Publication Date: 2021-03-11
Journal: Human vaccines & immunotherapeutics
Diffuse Gliomas of the Brainstem and Cerebellum in Adults Show Molecular Heterogeneity.
Posterior fossa (PF) diffuse gliomas in pediatric patients frequently harbor the H3 K27M mutation. Among adults, PF diffuse gliomas are rare, with limited data regarding molecular features and clinical outcomes. We identified 28 adult PF diffuse glioma patients (17 males; median: 50 y, range: 19 to 78 y), with surgery performed at our institution (13 brainstem; 15 cerebellum). Histologic subtypes included anaplastic astrocytoma (n=21), glioblastoma (n=6), and diffuse astrocytoma (n=1). Immunohistochemistry was performed for H3 K27M (n=26), IDH1-R132H (n=28), and ATRX (n=28). A 150-gene neuro-oncology-targeted next-generation sequencing panel was attempted in 24/28, with sufficient informative material in 15 (51.7%). Tumors comprised 4 distinct groups: driver mutations in H3F3A (brainstem=4; cerebellum=2), IDH1 (brainstem=4; cerebellum=4), TERT promotor mutation (brainstem=0; cerebellum=3), and none of these (n=5), with the latter harboring mutations of TP53, PDGFRA, ATRX, NF1, and RB1. All TERT promoter-mutant cases were IDH-wild-type and arose within the cerebellum. To date, 20 patients have died of disease, with a median survival of 16.3 months, 1-year survival of 67.5%. Median survival within the subgroups included: H3F3A=16.4 months, IDH mutant=113.4 months, and TERT promoter mutant=12.9 months. These findings suggest that PF diffuse gliomas affecting adults show molecular heterogeneity, which may be associated with patient outcomes and possible response to therapy, and supports the utility of molecular testing in these tumors.
Publication Date: 2021-02-20
Journal: The American journal of surgical pathology
The novel driver gene ASAP2 is a potential druggable target in pancreatic cancer.
Targeting mutated oncogenes is an effective approach for treating cancer. The 4 main driver genes of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) are KRAS, TP53, CDKN2A, and SMAD4, collectively called the "big 4" of PDAC, however they remain challenging therapeutic targets. In this study, ArfGAP with SH3 domain, ankyrin repeat and PH domain 2 (ASAP2), one of the ArfGAP family, was identified as a novel driver gene in PDAC. Clinical analysis with PDAC datasets showed that ASAP2 was overexpressed in PDAC cells based on increased DNA copy numbers, and high ASAP2 expression contributed to a poor prognosis in PDAC. The biological roles of ASAP2 were investigated using ASAP2-knockout PDAC cells generated with CRISPR-Cas9 technology or transfected PDAC cells. In vitro and in vivo analyses showed that ASAP2 promoted tumor growth by facilitating cell cycle progression through phosphorylation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). A repositioned drug targeting the ASAP2 pathway was identified using a bioinformatics approach. The gene perturbation correlation method showed that niclosamide, an antiparasitic drug, suppressed PDAC growth by inhibition of ASAP2 expression. These data show that ASAP2 is a novel druggable driver gene that activates the EGFR signaling pathway. Furthermore, niclosamide was identified as a repositioned therapeutic agent for PDAC possibly targeting ASAP2.
Publication Date: 2021-02-20
Journal: Cancer science
PTEN Loss as a Predictor of Tumor Heterogeneity and Poor Prognosis in Patients With EGFR-mutant Advanced Non-small-cell Lung Cancer Receiving Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors.
Rapid disease progression of patients with advanced epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-mutant non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) has been recently associated with tumor heterogeneity, which may be mirrored by coexisting concomitant alterations. The aim of this analysis was to investigate the correlation between loss of function of PTEN and the efficacy of tyrosine kinase inhibitors in this population.
Archival tumor blocks from patients with EGFR-mutant NSCLC who were administered upfront tyrosine kinase inhibitors were retrospectively collected. The status of 4 genes (PTEN, TP53, c-MET, IGFR) was evaluated by immunohistochemistry, and it was correlated with overall response rate, overall survival (OS), and progression-free survival (PFS).
Fifty-one patients were included. In multivariate analysis, PTEN loss (hazard ratio [HR], 3.46; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.56-7.66; P = .002), IGFR overexpression (HR, 2.22; 95% CI, 1.03-4.77; P = .04), liver metastases (HR, 3.55; 95% CI, 1.46-8.65; P = .005), and Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status (ECOG PS) ≥ 1 (HR, 2.57; 95% CI, 1.04-6.34; P = .04) were significantly associated with shorter PFS. Patients with PTEN loss had a median PFS of 6 months (2-year PFS, 11.6%), whereas patients without PTEN loss had a median PFS of 18 months (2-year PFS, 43.6%) (log-rank P < .005). In the multivariate analysis, PTEN loss (HR, 5.92; 95% CI, 2.37-14.81; P < .005), liver metastases (HR, 2.63; 95% CI, 1.06-6.51; P = .037), and ECOG PS ≥ 1 (HR, 2.80; 95% CI, 1.15-6.81; P = .024) were significantly associated with shorter OS. Patients with PTEN loss had a median OS of 6 months (2-year OS, 12.2%), whereas in patients without PTEN loss, OS was not reached (2-year OS, 63.9%) (log-rank P < .0005).
A low-cost and reproducible immunohistochemistry assay for PTEN loss analysis represents a potential tool for identifying tumor heterogeneity in patients with advanced EGFR-mutant NSCLC.
Publication Date: 2021-02-10
Journal: Clinical lung cancer
MDM4 inhibition: a novel therapeutic strategy to reactivate p53 in hepatoblastoma.
Hepatoblastoma (HB) is the most common pediatric liver malignancy. High-risk patients have poor survival, and current chemotherapies are associated with significant toxicities. Targeted therapies are needed to improve outcomes and patient quality of life. Most HB cases are TP53 wild-type; therefore, we hypothesized that targeting the p53 regulator Murine double minute 4 (MDM4) to reactivate p53 signaling may show efficacy. MDM4 expression was elevated in HB patient samples, and increased expression was strongly correlated with decreased expression of p53 target genes. Treatment with NSC207895 (XI-006), which inhibits MDM4 expression, or ATSP-7041, a stapled peptide dual inhibitor of MDM2 and MDM4, showed significant cytotoxic and antiproliferative effects in HB cells. Similar phenotypes were seen with short hairpin RNA (shRNA)-mediated inhibition of MDM4. Both NSC207895 and ATSP-7041 caused significant upregulation of p53 targets in HB cells. Knocking-down TP53 with shRNA or overexpressing MDM4 led to resistance to NSC207895-mediated cytotoxicity, suggesting that this phenotype is dependent on the MDM4-p53 axis. MDM4 inhibition also showed efficacy in a murine model of HB with significantly decreased tumor weight and increased apoptosis observed in the treatment group. This study demonstrates that inhibition of MDM4 is efficacious in HB by upregulating p53 tumor suppressor signaling.
Publication Date: 2021-02-05
Journal: Scientific reports
Risk Reclassification of Patients with Endometrial Cancer Based on Tumor Molecular Profiling: First Real World Data.
Recently, guidelines for endometrial cancer (EC) were released that guide treatment decisions according to the tumors' molecular profiles. To date, no real-world data regarding the clinical feasibility of molecular profiling have been released. This retrospective, monocentric study investigated the clinical feasibility of molecular profiling and its potential impact on treatment decisions. Tumor specimens underwent molecular profiling (testing for genetic alterations, (immune-)histological examination of lymphovascular space invasion (LVSI), and L1CAM) as part of the clinical routine and were classified according to the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) classification system and to an integrated molecular risk stratification. Shifts between risk groups and potential treatment alterations are described. A total of 60 cases were included, of which twelve were excluded (20%), and eight of the remaining 48 were not characterized (drop-out rate of 16.7%). Molecular profiling revealed 4, 6, 25, and 5 patients with DNA polymerase-epsilon mutation, microsatellite instability, no specific molecular profile, and TP53 mutation, respectively. Three patients had substantial LVSI, and four patients showed high L1CAM expression. Molecular profiling took a median of 18.5 days. Substantial shifts occurred between the classification systems: four patients were upstaged, and 19 patients were downstaged. Molecular profiling of EC specimens is feasible in a daily routine, and new risk classification systems will change treatment decisions substantially.
Publication Date: 2021-01-21
Journal: Journal of personalized medicine