Convergent structural alterations define SWItch/Sucrose NonFermentable (SWI/SNF) chromatin remodeler as a central tumor suppressive complex in pancreatic cancer.
ABSTRACT: Defining the molecular genetic alterations underlying pancreatic cancer may provide unique therapeutic insight for this deadly disease. Toward this goal, we report here an integrative DNA microarray and sequencing-based analysis of pancreatic cancer genomes. Notable among the alterations newly identified, genomic deletions, mutations, and rearrangements recurrently targeted genes encoding components of the SWItch/Sucrose NonFermentable (SWI/SNF) chromatin remodeling complex, including all three putative DNA binding subunits (ARID1A, ARID1B, and PBRM1) and both enzymatic subunits (SMARCA2 and SMARCA4). Whereas alterations of each individual SWI/SNF subunit occurred at modest-frequency, as mutational "hills" in the genomic landscape, together they affected at least one-third of all pancreatic cancers, defining SWI/SNF as a major mutational "mountain." Consistent with a tumor-suppressive role, re-expression of SMARCA4 in SMARCA4-deficient pancreatic cancer cell lines reduced cell growth and promoted senescence, whereas its overexpression in a SWI/SNF-intact line had no such effect. In addition, expression profiling analyses revealed that SWI/SNF likely antagonizes Polycomb repressive complex 2, implicating this as one possible mechanism of tumor suppression. Our findings reveal SWI/SNF to be a central tumor suppressive complex in pancreatic cancer.
Project description:BACKGROUNDImmune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) fail to demonstrate efficacy in pancreatic cancer. Recently, genomic biomarkers have been associated with response to ICIs: microsatellite instability high (MSI-H) and tumor mutation burden (TMB) > 10 mutations/Mb. Alterations in Switch/Sucrose Nonfermentable (SWI/SNF) chromatin remodeling genes may predispose to improved outcomes with immunotherapy. The current study examined a possible role for SWI/SNF complex abnormalities in pancreatic cancer responsiveness to ICIs.METHODSA database of 6831 cancer patients that had undergone next-generation sequencing (NGS) was filtered for advanced pancreatic cancer, SWI/SNF alterations, and outcomes depending on immunotherapy treatment.RESULTSNine patients had metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma harboring SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling gene alterations and had received ICIs: 7 had an ARID1A alteration (77%); 2, ARID1B (22%); 3, SMARCA4 (33%); 1, SMARCB1 (11%); and 1, PBRM1 (11%). Three patients possessed more than 1 SWI/SNF complex alteration. Only 3 tumors were microsatellite unstable. Eight of 9 patients (89%) achieved an objective response, including a complete remission, with the 2 longest responses ongoing at 33+ and 36+ months. Median progression-free and overall survival was 9 and 15 months, respectively. Responses occurred even in the presence of microsatellite stability, low TMB, and/or low PD-L1 expression.CONCLUSIONA small subset of patients with pancreatic cancer have genomic alterations in SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling components and appear to be responsive to ICIs, suggesting the need for prospective trials.TRIAL REGISTRATIONClinicalTrials.gov, NCT02478931.FUNDINGJoan and Irwin Jacobs Fund, NIH P30 CA023100 (RK) and LRP KYGF9753 (GPB), the Gershenson, Duarte, and anonymous patient families (GPB).
Project description:Mutations of the SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complex occur in 20% of all human cancers, including ovarian cancer. Approximately half of ovarian clear cell carcinomas (OCCC) carry mutations in the SWI/SNF subunit ARID1A, while small cell carcinoma of the ovary hypercalcemic type (SCCOHT) presents with inactivating mutations of the SWI/SNF ATPase SMARCA4 alongside epigenetic silencing of the ATPase SMARCA2. Loss of these ATPases disrupts SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling activity and may also interfere with the function of other histone-modifying enzymes that associate with or are dependent on SWI/SNF activity. One such enzyme is lysine-specific histone demethylase 1 (LSD1/KDM1A), which regulates the chromatin landscape and gene expression by demethylating proteins such as histone H3. Cross-cancer analysis of the TCGA database shows that LSD1 is highly expressed in SWI/SNF-mutated tumors. SCCOHT and OCCC cell lines have shown sensitivity to the reversible LSD1 inhibitor SP-2577 (Seclidemstat), suggesting that SWI/SNF-deficient ovarian cancers are dependent on LSD1 activity. Moreover, it has been shown that inhibition of LSD1 stimulates interferon (IFN)-dependent anti-tumor immunity through induction of endogenous retroviral elements and may thereby overcome resistance to checkpoint blockade. In this study, we investigated the ability of SP-2577 to promote anti-tumor immunity and T-cell infiltration in SCCOHT and OCCC cell lines. We found that SP-2577 stimulated IFN-dependent anti-tumor immunity in SCCOHT and promoted the expression of PD-L1 in both SCCOHT and OCCC. Together, these findings suggest that the combination therapy of SP-2577 with checkpoint inhibitors may induce or augment immunogenic responses of SWI/SNF-mutated ovarian cancers and warrants further investigation.
Project description:The clinicopathological significance of altered SWI/SNF complex has not been well evaluated in gastric cancer (GC). We examined SMARCA2, SMARCA4, SMARCB1 and ARID1A expression by immunohistochemistry in 1224 surgically resected GCs with subtyping into Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), microsatellite instability (MSI) and non-EBV/MSI Lauren histotypes. SWI/SNF mutations were investigated using the GC dataset of the TCGA Pan-Cancer Atlas. Clinicopathological association was assessed by statistical analysis. There were 427 cases (35%) of SWI/SNF-attenuated GC, including 344 SMARCA2 (28%), 28 SMARCA4 (2%), 11 SMARCB1 (1%) and 197 ARID1A (16%) cases. Simultaneous alterations of multiple subunits were observed. Compared to SWI/SNF-retained cases, SWI/SNF-attenuated GC exhibited a significant predilection to older ages, EBV and MSI genotypes, higher lymphatic invasion and less hematogenous recurrence (P < 0.05). SWI/SNF attenuation was an independent risk factor for short overall survival (P = 0.001, hazard ratio 1.360, 95% confidence interval 1.138-1.625). The survival impact stemmed from SMARCA2-attenuated GCs in stage III and non-EBV/MSI diffuse/mixed subtypes (P = 0.019 and < 0.001, respectively). ARID1A-lost/heterogeneous GCs were more aggressive in the EBV genotype (P = 0.016). SMARCB1 or SMARCA4 loss was not restricted to rhabdoid/undifferentiated carcinoma. In the TCGA dataset, 223 of 434 GCs (52%) harbored deleterious SWI/SNF mutations, including ARID1A (27%), SMARCA2 (9%), ARID2 (9%), ARID1B (8%), PBRM1 (7%), and SMARCA4 (7%). SWI/SNF-mutated GCs displayed a favorable outcome owing to the high percentage with the MSI genotype. In conclusion, SWI/SNF-altered GCs are common and the clinicopathological significance is related to the genotype.
Project description:Here we performed transcriptional profiling of the prostate cancer cell lines LNCaP and 22Rv1 comparing non-targeting siRNA treatment versus siRNAs targeting SWI/SNF complex proteins (SMARCA2, SMARCA4, and SMARCB1). Goal was to determine the effect of SWI/SNF knockdown on gene expression in prostate cancer. Two-condition experiment: non-targeting siRNA versus SWI/SNF-siRNA treated cells. Three SWI/SNF proteins were targeted: SMARCA2, SMARCA4, and SMARB1. Biological replicates: 1 control replicate, 2 treatment replicates per SWI/SNF protein. Technical replicates: 1 replicate per SWI/SNF protein. Cell lines: 22Rv1 and LNCaP.
Project description:Mammalian SWI/SNF (SWitch/Sucrose Non-Fermentable) complexes are ATP-dependent chromatin remodelers whose subunits have emerged among the most frequently mutated genes in cancer. Studying SWI/SNF function in cancer cell line models has unveiled vulnerabilities in SWI/SNF-mutant tumors that can lead to the discovery of new therapeutic drugs. However, choosing an appropriate cancer cell line model for SWI/SNF functional studies can be challenging because SWI/SNF subunits are frequently altered in cancer by various mechanisms, including genetic alterations and post-transcriptional mechanisms. In this work, we combined genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic approaches to study the mutational status and the expression levels of the SWI/SNF subunits in a panel of 38 lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) cell lines. We found that the SWI/SNF complex was mutated in more than 76% of our LUAD cell lines and there was a high variability in the expression of the different SWI/SNF subunits. These results underline the importance of the SWI/SNF complex as a tumor suppressor in LUAD and the difficulties in defining altered and unaltered cell models for the SWI/SNF complex. These findings will assist researchers in choosing the most suitable cellular models for their studies of SWI/SNF to bring all of its potential to the development of novel therapeutic applications.
Project description:Alterations in chromatin structure caused by deregulated epigenetic mechanisms collaborate with underlying genetic lesions to promote cancer. SMARCA4/BRG1, a core component of the SWI/SNF ATP-dependent chromatin-remodelling complex, has been implicated by its mutational spectrum as exerting a tumour-suppressor function in many solid tumours; recently however, it has been reported to sustain leukaemogenic transformation in MLL-rearranged leukaemia in mice. Here we further explore the role of SMARCA4 and the two SWI/SNF subunits SMARCD2/BAF60B and DPF2/BAF45D in leukaemia. We observed the selective requirement for these proteins for leukaemic cell expansion and self-renewal in-vitro as well as in leukaemia. Gene expression profiling in human cells of each of these three factors suggests that they have overlapping functions in leukaemia. The gene expression changes induced by loss of the three proteins demonstrate that they are required for the expression of haematopoietic stem cell associated genes but in contrast to previous results obtained in mouse cells, the three proteins are not required for the expression of c-MYC regulated genes.
Project description:The SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complex is frequently inactivated by somatic mutations of its various components in various types of cancers, and also by aberrant DNA methylation. However, its somatic mutations and aberrant methylation in esophageal squamous cell carcinomas (ESCCs) have not been fully analyzed. In this study, we aimed to clarify in ESCC, what components of the SWI/SNF complex have somatic mutations and aberrant methylation, and when somatic mutations of the SWI/SNF complex occur. Deep sequencing of components of the SWI/SNF complex using a bench-top next generation sequencer revealed that eight of 92 ESCCs (8.7%) had 11 somatic mutations of 7 genes, ARID1A, ARID2, ATRX, PBRM1, SMARCA4, SMARCAL1, and SMARCC1. The SMARCA4 mutations were located in the Forkhead (85Ser>Leu) and SNF2 family N-terminal (882Glu>Lys) domains. The PBRM1 mutations were located in a bromodomain (80Asn>Ser) and an HMG-box domain (1,377Glu>Lys). For most mutations, their mutant allele frequency was 31-77% (mean 61%) of the fraction of cancer cells in the same samples, indicating that most of the cancer cells in individual ESCC samples had the SWI/SNF mutations on one allele, when present. In addition, a BeadChip array analysis revealed that a component of the SWI/SNF complex, ACTL6B, had aberrant methylation at its promoter CpG island in 18 of 52 ESCCs (34.6%). These results showed that genetic and epigenetic alterations of the SWI/SNF complex are present in ESCCs, and suggested that genetic alterations are induced at an early stage of esophageal squamous cell carcinogenesis.
Project description:Dysfunction of the SWI/SNF complex has been observed in various cancers including urothelial carcinomas. However, the clinical impact of the SWI/SNF complex in squamous-differentiated bladder cancers (sq-BLCA) remains unclear. Therefore, we aimed to analyze potential expression loss and genetic alterations of (putative) key components of the SWI/SNF complex considering the co-occurrence of genetic driver mutations and PD-L1 expression as indicators for therapeutic implications. Assessment of ARID1A, SMARCA2, SMARCA4, SMARCB1/INI1, SMARCC1, SMARCC2 and PBRM1 mutations in a TCGA data set of sq-BLCA (n = 45) revealed that ARID1A was the most frequently altered SWI/SNF gene (15%) while being associated with protein downregulation. Genetic alterations and loss of ARID1A were confirmed by Targeted Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) (3/6) and immunohistochemistry (6/116). Correlation with further mutational data and PD-L1 expression revealed co-occurrence of ARID1A loss and TP53 mutations, while positive correlations with other driver mutations such as PIK3CA were not observed. Finally, a rare number of sq-BLCA samples were characterized by both ARID1A protein loss and strong PD-L1 expression suggesting a putative benefit upon immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy. Hence, for the first time, our data revealed expression loss of SWI/SNF subunits in sq-BLCA, highlighting ARID1A as a putative target of a small subgroup of patients eligible for novel therapeutic strategies.
Project description:Lung cancer is a devastating disease that remains a top cause of cancer mortality. Despite improvements with targeted and immunotherapies, the majority of patients with lung cancer lack effective therapies, underscoring the need for additional treatment approaches. Genomic studies have identified frequent alterations in components of the SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complex including SMARCA4 and ARID1A. To understand the mechanisms of tumorigenesis driven by mutations in this complex, we developed a genetically engineered mouse model of lung adenocarcinoma by ablating Smarca4 in the lung epithelium. We demonstrate that Smarca4 acts as a bona fide tumor suppressor and cooperates with p53 loss and Kras activation. Gene expression analyses revealed the signature of enhanced oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) in SMARCA4 mutant tumors. We further show that SMARCA4 mutant cells have enhanced oxygen consumption and increased respiratory capacity. Importantly, SMARCA4 mutant lung cancer cell lines and xenograft tumors have marked sensitivity to inhibition of OXPHOS by a novel small molecule, IACS-010759, that is under clinical development. Mechanistically, we show that SMARCA4-deficient cells have a blunted transcriptional response to energy stress creating a therapeutically exploitable synthetic lethal interaction. These findings provide the mechanistic basis for further development of OXPHOS inhibitors as therapeutics against SWI/SNF mutant tumors.
Project description:Human cancer genome sequencing has recently revealed that genes that encode subunits of SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling complexes are frequently mutated across a wide variety of cancers, and several subunits of the complex have been shown to have bona fide tumor suppressor activity. However, whether mutations in SWI/SNF subunits result in shared dependencies is unknown. Here we show that EZH2, a catalytic subunit of the polycomb repressive complex 2 (PRC2), is essential in all tested cancer cell lines and xenografts harboring mutations of the SWI/SNF subunits ARID1A, PBRM1, and SMARCA4, which are several of the most frequently mutated SWI/SNF subunits in human cancer, but that co-occurrence of a Ras pathway mutation is correlated with abrogation of this dependence. Notably, we demonstrate that SWI/SNF-mutant cancer cells are primarily dependent on a non-catalytic role of EZH2 in the stabilization of the PRC2 complex, and that they are only partially dependent on EZH2 histone methyltransferase activity. These results not only reveal a shared dependency of cancers with genetic alterations in SWI/SNF subunits, but also suggest that EZH2 enzymatic inhibitors now in clinical development may not fully suppress the oncogenic activity of EZH2.