Recurrent GNAS mutations define an unexpected pathway for pancreatic cyst development.
ABSTRACT: More than 2% of the adult U.S. population harbors a pancreatic cyst. These often pose a difficult management problem because conventional criteria cannot always distinguish cysts with malignant potential from those that are innocuous. One of the most common cystic neoplasms of the pancreas, and a bona fide precursor to invasive adenocarcinoma, is called intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN). To help reveal the pathogenesis of these lesions, we purified the DNA from IPMN cyst fluids from 19 patients and searched for mutations in 169 genes commonly altered in human cancers. In addition to the expected KRAS mutations, we identified recurrent mutations at codon 201 of GNAS. A larger number (113) of additional IPMNs were then analyzed to determine the prevalence of KRAS and GNAS mutations. In total, we found that GNAS mutations were present in 66% of IPMNs and that either KRAS or GNAS mutations could be identified in 96%. In eight cases, we could investigate invasive adenocarcinomas that developed in association with IPMNs containing GNAS mutations. In seven of these eight cases, the GNAS mutations present in the IPMNs were also found in the invasive lesion. GNAS mutations were not found in other types of cystic neoplasms of the pancreas or in invasive adenocarcinomas not associated with IPMNs. In addition to defining a new pathway for pancreatic neoplasia, these data suggest that GNAS mutations can inform the diagnosis and management of patients with cystic pancreatic lesions.
Project description:Intraductal neoplasms are important precursors to invasive pancreatic cancer and provide an opportunity to detect and treat pancreatic neoplasia before an invasive carcinoma develops. The diagnostic evaluation of these lesions is challenging, as diagnostic imaging and cytological sampling do not provide accurate information on lesion classification, the grade of dysplasia or the presence of invasion. Moreover, the molecular driver gene mutations of these precursor lesions have yet to be fully characterized. Fifty-two intraductal papillary neoplasms, including 48 intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs) and four intraductal tubulopapillary neoplasms (ITPNs), were subjected to the mutation assessment in 51 cancer-associated genes, using ion torrent semiconductor-based next-generation sequencing. P16 and Smad4 immunohistochemistry was performed on 34 IPMNs and 17 IPMN-associated carcinomas. At least one somatic mutation was observed in 46/48 (96%) IPMNs; 29 (60%) had multiple gene alterations. GNAS and/or KRAS mutations were found in 44/48 (92%) of IPMNs. GNAS was mutated in 38/48 (79%) IPMNs, KRAS in 24/48 (50%) and these mutations coexisted in 18/48 (37.5%) of IPMNs. RNF43 was the third most commonly mutated gene and was always associated with GNAS and/or KRAS mutations, as were virtually all the low-frequency mutations found in other genes. Mutations in TP53 and BRAF genes (10% and 6%) were only observed in high-grade IPMNs. P16 was lost in 7/34 IPMNs and 9/17 IPMN-associated carcinomas; Smad4 was lost in 1/34 IPMNs and 5/17 IPMN-associated carcinomas. In contrast to IPMNs, only one of four ITPNs had detectable driver gene (GNAS and NRAS) mutations. Deep sequencing DNA from seven cyst fluid aspirates identified 10 of the 13 mutations detected in their associated IPMN. Using next-generation sequencing to detect cyst fluid mutations has the potential to improve the diagnostic and prognostic stratification of pancreatic cystic neoplasms.
Project description:Intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN) is a common pancreatic cystic neoplasm that is often invasive and metastatic, resulting in a poor prognosis. Few molecular alterations unique to IPMN are known. We performed whole-exome sequencing for a primary IPMN tissue, which uncovered somatic mutations in KCNF1, DYNC1H1, PGCP, STAB1, PTPRM, PRPF8, RNASE3, SPHKAP, MLXIPL, VPS13C, PRCC, GNAS, KRAS, RBM10, RNF43, DOCK2, and CENPF. We further analyzed GNAS mutations in archival cases of 118 IPMNs and 32 pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDAs), which revealed that 48 (40.7%) of the 118 IPMNs but none of the 32 PDAs harbored GNAS mutations. G-protein alpha-subunit encoded by GNAS and its downstream targets, phosphorylated substrates of protein kinase A, were evidently expressed in IPMN; the latter was associated with neoplastic grade. These results indicate that GNAS mutations are common and specific for IPMN, and activation of G-protein signaling appears to play a pivotal role in IPMN.
Project description:Pancreatic cystic neoplasms (PCNs) are a heterogeneous group with varying risks of malignancy. To explore the clinical utility of liquid biopsy in cyst type classification, we analyzed the GNAS/KRAS mutations in circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) obtained from 57 patients with histologically diagnosed PCNs, including 34 with intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs) and compared the mutant allele prevalence and variant patterns with the paired resected specimens using next-generation sequencing. The positive prevalence of GNAS mutations in cfDNA of patients with IPMN (n?=?11, 32%) was significantly higher than that in those with other PCNs (0%, P?=?0.002). Conversely, KRAS mutations were detected in cfDNA of only 2 (6%) IPMN patients. The paired-sample comparison revealed highly concordance between the GNAS mutation status of cfDNA and resected IPMN specimens. Similar distributions of GNAS mutation positivity in cfDNA were observed across the different histological grades, whereas IPMNs with intestinal subtype showed a significantly higher prevalence of GNAS mutations than other subtypes (P?=?0.030). GNAS mutation positivity in cfDNA was significantly associated with the acellular mucin pool of histological findings in primary IPMN lesions (P?=?0.017). Detection of GNAS mutation in cfDNA can serve as a novel biomarker for cyst type classification and differentiation of intestinal subtype IPMN from the other PCNs.
Project description:BACKGROUND & AIMS:Mutations at hotspots in GNAS, which encodes stimulatory G-protein, ? subunits, are detected in approximately 60% of intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs) of the pancreas. We generated mice with KRAS-induced IPMNs that also express a constitutively active form of GNAS in pancreas and studied tumor development. METHODS:We generated p48-Cre; LSL-KrasG12D; Rosa26R-LSL-rtTA-TetO-GnasR201C mice (Kras;Gnas mice); pancreatic tissues of these mice express activated KRAS and also express a mutant form of GNAS (GNASR201C) upon doxycycline administration. Mice that were not given doxycycline were used as controls, and survival times were compared by Kaplan-Meier analysis. Pancreata were collected at different time points after doxycycline administration and analyzed by histology. Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDACs) were isolated from mice and used to generate cell lines, which were analyzed by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, immunoblotting, immunohistochemistry, and colony formation and invasion assays. Full-length and mutant forms of yes-associated protein (YAP) were expressed in PDAC cells. IPMN specimens were obtained from 13 patients with IPMN undergoing surgery and analyzed by immunohistochemistry. RESULTS:All Kras;Gnas mice developed pancreatic cystic lesions that resemble human IPMNs; the grade of epithelial dysplasia increased with time. None of the control mice developed cystic lesions. Approximately one third of Kras;Gnas mice developed PDACs at a median of 30 weeks after doxycycline administration, whereas 33% of control mice developed PDACs. Expression of GNASR201C did not accelerate the development of PDACs compared with control mice. However, the neoplasms observed in Kras;Gnas mice were more differentiated, and expressed more genes associated with ductal phenotypes, than in control mice. PDACs isolated from Kras;Gnas mice had activation of the Hippo pathway; in cells from these tumors, phosphorylated YAP1 was sequestered in the cytoplasm, and this was also observed in human IPMNs with GNAS mutations. Sequestration of YAP1 was not observed in PDAC cells from control mice. CONCLUSIONS:In mice that express activated KRAS in the pancreas, we found expression of GNASR201C to cause development of more differentiated tumors, with gene expression pattern associated with the ductal phenotype. Expression of mutant GNAS caused phosphorylated YAP1 to be sequestered in the cytoplasm, altering tumor progression.
Project description:G?protein ?s (GNAS) mediates receptor-stimulated cAMP signalling, which integrates diverse environmental cues with intracellular responses. GNAS is mutationally activated in multiple tumour types, although its oncogenic mechanisms remain elusive. We explored this question in pancreatic tumourigenesis where concurrent GNAS and KRAS mutations characterize pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDAs) arising from intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs). By developing genetically engineered mouse models, we show that GnasR201C cooperates with KrasG12D to promote initiation of IPMN, which progress to invasive PDA following Tp53 loss. Mutant Gnas remains critical for tumour maintenance in vivo. This is driven by protein-kinase-A-mediated suppression of salt-inducible kinases (Sik1-3), associated with induction of lipid remodelling and fatty acid oxidation. Comparison of Kras-mutant pancreatic cancer cells with and without Gnas mutations reveals striking differences in the functions of this network. Thus, we uncover Gnas-driven oncogenic mechanisms, identify Siks as potent tumour suppressors, and demonstrate unanticipated metabolic heterogeneity among Kras-mutant pancreatic neoplasms.
Project description:BACKGROUND & AIMS:Intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasias (IPMNs) are precancerous cystic lesions that can develop into pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDACs). These large macroscopic lesions are frequently detected during medical imaging, but it is unclear how they form or progress to PDAC. We aimed to identify cells that form IPMNs and mutations that promote IPMN development and progression. METHODS:We generated mice with disruption of Pten specifically in ductal cells (Sox9CreERT2;Ptenflox/flox;R26RYFP or PtenΔDuct/ΔDuct mice) and used PtenΔDuct/+ and Pten+/+ mice as controls. We also generated KrasG12D;PtenΔDuct/ΔDuct and KrasG12D;PtenΔDuct/+ mice. Pancreata were collected when mice were 28 weeks to 14.5 months old and analyzed by histology, immunohistochemistry, and electron microscopy. We performed multiplexed droplet digital polymerase chain reaction to detect spontaneous Kras mutations in PtenΔDuct/ΔDuct mice and study the effects of Ras pathway activation on initiation and progression of IPMNs. We obtained 2 pancreatic sections from a patient with an invasive pancreatobiliary IPMN and analyzed the regions with and without the invasive IPMN (control tissue) by immunohistochemistry. RESULTS:Mice with ductal cell-specific disruption of Pten but not control mice developed sporadic, macroscopic, intraductal papillary lesions with histologic and molecular features of human IPMNs. PtenΔDuct/ΔDuct mice developed IPMNs of several subtypes. In PtenΔDuct/ΔDuct mice, 31.5% of IPMNs became invasive; invasion was associated with spontaneous mutations in Kras. KrasG12D;PtenΔDuct/ΔDuct mice all developed invasive IPMNs within 1 month. In KrasG12D;PtenΔDuct/+ mice, 70% developed IPMN, predominately of the pancreatobiliary subtype, and 63.3% developed PDAC. In all models, IPMNs and PDAC expressed the duct-specific lineage tracing marker yellow fluorescent protein. In immunohistochemical analyses, we found that the invasive human pancreatobiliary IPMN tissue had lower levels of PTEN and increased levels of phosphorylated (activated) ERK compared with healthy pancreatic tissue. CONCLUSIONS:In analyses of mice with ductal cell-specific disruption of Pten, with or without activated Kras, we found evidence for a ductal cell origin of IPMNs. We also showed that PTEN loss and activated Kras have synergistic effects in promoting development of IPMN and progression to PDAC.
Project description:An intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN) is a common pancreatic precursor lesion, and it often harbors mutations in KRAS, GNAS, and RNF43. To clarify the molecular profiles of IPMNs, we conducted mutation analysis of KRAS, GNAS, and RNF43 in 61 IPMN formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded (FFPE) specimens. The mutation rates of codons 12, 13, and 61 in KRAS and codon 201 in GNAS were detected by Sanger sequencing. Next-generation sequencing was performed on RNF43, and the results were further verified by Sanger sequencing. We identified KRAS and GNAS mutations in 35 (57%) and 40 (66%) IPMN cases, respectively. GNAS mutations were significantly correlated with the morphologic subtype (P < 0.001) and were more prevalent in the intestinal subtype (93%) than in the gastric (55%) and pancreatobiliary subtypes (44%) but were absent in the oncocytic subtype. RNF43 mutations were found in 5 cases (8%), all of which occurred in high-grade dysplasia and invasive lesions (2/5 and 3/5). All 5 cases harboring RNF43 mutations also exhibited GNAS mutations. RNF43 mutations were associated with a worse prognosis in invasive IPMN patients (P = 0.002), while KRAS and GNAS mutations did not affect the prognosis of patients.
Project description:Telomere end-to-end fusions are an important source of chromosomal instability that arise in cells with critically shortened telomeres. We developed a nested real-time quantitative PCR method for telomere fusion detection in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas, intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMNs), and IPMN cyst fluids. Ninety-one pancreatic cancer cell lines and xenograft samples, 93 IPMNs, and 93 surgically aspirated IPMN cyst fluid samples were analyzed. The association between telomere shortening, telomerase activity, and telomere fusion detection was evaluated. Telomere fusions were detected in 56 of 91 pancreatic cancers (61.5%). Telomere fusion-positive cell lines had significantly shorter telomere lengths than fusion-negative lines (P = 0.003). Telomere fusions were undetectable in normal pancreas or IPMNs with low-grade dysplasia (0.0%) and were detected in IPMN with high-grade dysplasia (HGD; 48.0%) (P < 0.001). In IPMN cyst fluids, telomere fusions were more frequent in IPMNs with HGD (26.9%) or associated invasive cancer (42.9%) than IPMN with intermediate-grade dysplasia (15.4%) or low-grade dysplasia (0%) (P = 0.025). Telomerase activity levels were higher in cyst fluids with fusions than in those without (P = 0.0414). Cyst fluid telomere fusion status was an independent predictor of HGD/invasive cancer by multivariate analysis (odds ratio, 6.23; 95% CI, 1.61-28.0). Telomere fusions are detected in later stages of IPMN progression and can serve as a marker for predicting the presence of HGD and/or invasive cancer.
Project description:To clarify the genetic mutations associated with intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms (IPMN) and IPMN-related pancreatic tumours, we conducted cancer-related gene profiling analyses using pure pancreatic juice and resected pancreatic tissues.Pure pancreatic juice was collected from 152 patients [nine with a normal pancreas, 22 with chronic pancreatitis (CP), 39 with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), and 82 with IPMN], and resected tissues from the pancreas were collected from 48 patients (six IPMNs and 42 PDACs). The extracted DNA was amplified by multiplexed polymerase chain reaction (PCR) targeting 46 cancer-related genes containing 739 mutational hotspots. The mutations were analysed using a semiconductor-based DNA sequencer.Among the 46 cancer-related genes, KRAS and GNAS mutations were most frequently detected in both PDAC and IPMN cases. In pure pancreatic juice, GNAS mutations were detected in 7.7% of PDAC cases and 41.5% of IPMN cases (p<0.001 vs. others). All PDAC cases with GNAS mutations (n = 3) were accompanied by IPMN. Multivariate analysis revealed that GNAS mutations in IPMN cases were associated with dilated main pancreatic ducts (MPD, p = 0.016), while no statistically independent associations with clinical variables were observed for KRAS mutations. In the resected pancreatic tissues, GNAS mutations were detected in 50% of PDAC cases concomitant with IPMN, 33.3% of PDAC cases derived from IPMN, and 66.7% of IPMN cases, while no GNAS mutations were detected in cases of PDAC without IPMN.The GNAS mutation was specifically found in the cases with IPMN and it was speculated that some PDACs might be influenced by the concomitant but separately-located IPMN in their pathogenic mechanism. Furthermore, the GNAS mutation was significantly associated with MPD dilatation in IPMN cases, suggesting its role in mucus hypersecretion.
Project description:Pancreatic cysts are commonly detected in patients undergoing pancreatic imaging. Better approaches are needed to characterise these lesions. In this study we evaluated the utility of detecting mutant DNA in secretin-stimulated pancreatic juice.Secretin-stimulated pancreatic juice was collected from the duodenum of 291 subjects enrolled in Cancer of the Pancreas Screening trials at five US academic medical centres. The study population included subjects with a familial predisposition to pancreatic cancer who underwent pancreatic screening, and disease controls with normal pancreata, chronic pancreatitis, sporadic intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN) or other neoplasms. Somatic GNAS mutations (reported prevalence ? 66% of IPMNs) were measured using digital high-resolution melt-curve analysis and pyrosequencing.GNAS mutations were detected in secretin-stimulated pancreatic juice samples of 50 of 78 familial and sporadic cases of IPMN(s) (64.1%), 15 of 33 (45.5%) with only diminutive cysts (<5 mm), but none of 57 disease controls. GNAS mutations were also detected in five of 123 screened subjects without a pancreatic cyst. Among 97 subjects who had serial pancreatic evaluations, GNAS mutations detected in baseline juice samples predicted subsequent emergence or increasing size of pancreatic cysts.Duodenal collections of secretin-stimulated pancreatic juice from patients with IPMNs have a similar prevalence of mutant GNAS to primary IPMNs, indicating that these samples are an excellent source of mutant DNA from the pancreas. The detection of GNAS mutations before an IPMN is visible suggests that analysis of pancreatic juice has the potential to help in the risk stratification and surveillance of patients undergoing pancreatic screening.