Single nucleotide polymorphisms in AREG and EREG are prognostic biomarkers in locally advanced gastric cancer patients after surgery with curative intent.
ABSTRACT: Amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin (EREG) are important ligands to the epithelial growth factor receptor, which is involved in the regulation of progression and stemness in gastric cancer (GC). This study investigated whether frequent single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes of AREG and EREG are associated with recurrence-free survival and overall survival in patients with locally advanced GC.SNPs with a minor allele frequency of at least 10% were analyzed using direct DNA sequencing in two independent study populations.The minor allele of AREG rs1615111 was associated with a significantly higher 3-year recurrence rate and lower 3-year survival rate [hazard ratio (HR)=2.21 and 2.35, respectively] compared with patients homozygous for the dominant allele G. The value for overall survival could be validated with a HR of 2.54 (P=0.018) in an independent cohort. Patients homozygous for the minor allele A of EREG rs12641042 had a significantly higher 3-year survival rate than patients with allele C (HR 0.48; P=0.034), but significance was lost in multivariable analysis (P=0.066). The value of rs12641042 could not be validated (P=0.98). Exploratory multivariable subgroup analysis showed the strongest prognostic value for rs1615111 in tumors with a diffuse histology (Pfor interaction=0.004).AREG rs1615111, located in the AREG genomic region, can significantly define different prognostic cohorts in locally advanced GC. This value is most evident in GC patients with diffuse histology, which might be relevant as none of the trials testing epithelial growth factor receptor inhibitors has been enriched for diffuse histology or a molecularly defined population.
Project description:Background: The EGFR (epithelial growth factor receptor) ligands amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin (EREG) have been considered as predictors for EGFR-antibody efficacy. The effect of AREG and EREG expression levels in primary tumor samples on the outcome of bevacizumab-treated patients is unknown. Patients and Methods: Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tumor samples from surgically removed primaries of the AIO KRK-0207 trial have been tested for AREG and EREG expression. The AIO KRK-0207 trial was a randomized phase-3 study to investigate the best maintenance strategy after oxaliplatin/fluoropyrimidine plus bevacizumab induction treatment in patients with mCRC. Association of AREG and EREG levels with outcome parameters were investigated, taking into account RAS and BRAF mutations. Results: A total of 331 tumor samples had measurable AREG and EREG tissue levels. In the total cohort using continuous expression levels, higher logAREG and logEREG levels were associated with a significant longer overall survival (OS) (HR 0.80; p = 0.003 and HR 0.78; p = 0.001, respectively). The subgroup of BRAF mutant tumors displayed significantly lower AREG and EREG levels compared to wild-type tumors. The prognostic effect of AREG and EREG expression was limited to the double wild-type subpopulation, whereas in the RAS mutant and BRAF mutant subgroups no prognostic effect was detected. Conclusion: Low logAREG and logEREG levels are associated with a shorter OS in oxaliplatin/fluoropyrimidine plus bevacizumab treated patients. As low AREG and EREG level are associated with BRAF mutations, the prognostic value of EREG and AREG levels is limited to the RAS and BRAF wild-type subpopulation.
Project description:Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and its ligands amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin (EREG) play a central role in the development of colorectal cancer, but the prognostic values of AREG and EREG are controversial. We conducted a meta-analysis of studies that investigated AREG and/or EREG mRNA levels in primary tumors to determine their prognostic value in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). In addition, RAS status was assessed. Relevant articles were identified by searching the EMBASE, PubMed, and Cochrane Library databases. Hazard ratios (HR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated using a random-effects model. Nine studies involving 2167 patients were included in this meta-analysis. High AREG expression was associated with longer overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS). High EREG expression was also associated with prolonged OS and PFS. In RAS wild-type (WT) patients who received anti-EGFR therapy, high AREG and EREG expression was associated with longer OS. Our results indicate that high AREG and EREG mRNA expression are independent favorable prognostic biomarkers in mCRC. The expression of these ligands should be considered when evaluating prognoses in RAS-WT patients receiving anti-EGFR therapy.
Project description:High amplification of epiregulin (EREG) and amphireglin (AREG) in tumour tissues has been previously reported to be associated with better outcome in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) patients who were treated with anti-EGFR antibodies. Here we investigated associations between the expression of other candidate prognostic biomarkers and outcome in mCRC patients receiving similar treatment.The relative mRNA levels of seven genes including ERBB2, MET, VEGFA, EREG, AREG, PTEN and ERCC1 between tumour (T) and non-tumour (NT) tissue sections were analysed by quantitative real-time PCR. Relative mRNA values, that is, T/NT ratios, of target genes were calculated and hazard ratios (HRs) for each gene of interest were adjusted for age, gender, performance status, minor RAS mutations and other clinicopathological variables which exhibited P-values<0.1 on the basis of univariate analysis.Among 108 cases who received anti-EGFR antibodies, there were 96 cases of KRAS exon2 wild-type patients enroled in this study. When the cutoff values for relative mRNA levels were set to the upper 25th percentile of all patients, there were statistically significant differences in overall survival (OS) between the patients with high and low levels of EREG (HR: 0.326, 95% CI: 0.136-0.772, P=0.011), ERBB2 (HR: 1.31, 95% CI: 1.084-1.652, P=0.040), MET (HR: 2.48, 95% CI: 1.356-5.463, P=0.026), and VEGF-A (HR: 1.29, 95% CI: 1.036-1.606, P=0.046). In addition, patients with high ERBB2 had shorter progression-free survival (PFS) compared with low ERBB2 (HR: 1.98, 95% CI: 1.062-3.850). There were no significant differences in PFS and OS with respect to relative expression levels of PTEN and ERCC1. The prognostic role of AREG was evaluated in only T sections, as the mRNA expression level of this gene was mostly (91% cases) undetectable in NT sections. Patients with high AREG had longer OS compared with low AREG (HR: 0.227, 95% CI: 0.095-0.808).Our study has shown that higher T/NT ratios of ERBB2, MET and VEGFA mRNA were associated with worse OS in mCRC patients treated with anti-EGFR antibodies, with higher EREG and AREG were associated with better prognosis in the same setting. These findings will contribute the further understanding and management of anti-EGFR antibody treatment in mCRC patients.
Project description:BACKGROUND: More than half of patients with KRAS-wild type advanced colorectal cancer (CRC) fail anti-EGFR monoclonal antibodies. We studied EGFR-axis messenger RNA (mRNA) expression and RAS, RAF, PIK3CA mutations in order to identify additional biomarkers of cetuximab efficacy. METHODS: Previously genotyped (KRAS, NRAS, BRAF, PIK3CA mutations) formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tumour biopsies of 226 cetuximab-treated CRC patients (1st to 3rd line therapy) were assessed for mRNA expression of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and its ligands EGF, Transofrming Growth Factor-a (TGFA), Amphiregulin (AREG) and Epiregulin (EREG) with real time quantitative PCR. Mutations were detected in 72 (31.9%) tumours for KRAS, in 6 (2.65%) for BRAF, in 7 (3.1%) for NRAS and in 37 (16.4%) for PIK3CA. RESULTS: Only PIK3CA mutations occasionally coexisted with other gene mutations. In univariate analysis, prognostic significance for survival ( from metastases until death) was seen for BRAF mutations (Hazard Ratio HR 8.1, 95% CI 3.4-19), codon 12-only KRAS mutations (HR 1.62, 95% CI 1.1-2.4), high AREG mRNA expression only in KRAS wild type CRC (HR 0.47, 95% CI 0.3-0.7) and high EREG mRNA expression irrespective of KRAS mutation status (HR 0.45, 95% CI 0.28-0.7). EREG tumoural mRNA expression was significantly associated with a 2.26-fold increased likelihood of objective response to cetuximab therapy (RECIST 1.1). In multivariate analysis, favourable predictive factors were high AREG mRNA in KRAS wild type tumours, high EREG mRNA, low Ephrin A2 receptor mRNA. Cetuximab-treated patients with AREG-low KRAS wild type CRC fared very poorly, their survival being similar to KRAS mutant CRC. Patients with KRAS codon 13 or other non-codon 12 mutations had a median survival (30 months, 95% CI 20-35) similar to that of patients with KRAS wild-type (median survival 29 months, 95% CI 25-35), in contrast to patients with KRAS codon 12 mutations who fared worse (median survival 19 months, 95% CI 15-26). CONCLUSIONS: BRAF and codon 12 KRAS mutations predict for adverse outcome of CRC patients receiving cetuximab. AREG mRNA reflects EGFR signalling in KRAS wild type tumours, predicting for cetuximab efficacy when high and failure when low. EREG may have a prognostic role independent of KRAS mutation.
Project description:MAPK14 (p38MAPKalpha) is critical for FSH and prostaglandin E (PGE)2 signaling cascades in granulosa cells (GCs) and cumulus cell-oocyte complexes (COCs) in culture, indicating that this kinase might impact follicular development and COC expansion in vivo. Because Mapk14 knockout mice are embryonic lethal, we generated GC specific Mapk14 knockout mice (Mapk14gc(-/-)) by mating Mapk14(fl/fl) and Cyp19-Cre mice. Unexpectedly, the Mapk14gc(-/-) female mice were fertile. Analyses of gene expression patterns showed that amphiregulin (Areg) and epiregulin (Ereg), two key regulators of ovulation and COC expansion, were up-regulated in the GCs but down-regulated in cumulus cells of the mutant mice in vivo. COCs from the mutant mice expanded and expressed matrix-related genes, if cultured with AREG, but not when cultured with forskolin or PGE2, the latter being a key factor regulating MAPK14 activity in cumulus cells. Conversely, when GCs from the Mapk14gc(-/-) mice were cultured with forskolin, they produced more Areg and Ereg mRNA than did wild-type GCs. These results indicate that disruption of Mapk14 selectively alters the expression of Areg and other genes in each cell type. Greater AREG and EREG produced by the GCs appears to by-pass and compensate for the critical need for MAPK14 signaling and induction of Areg/Ereg (and hence matrix genes) by PGE2 in cumulus cells of the mutant mice. In conclusion, although MAPK14 is not overtly essential for preovulatory follicle development or events associated with ovulation and luteinization in vivo, it does impact gene expression profiles.
Project description:Importance:Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) (HER1) signaling depends on ligand binding and dimerization with itself or other HER receptors. We previously showed in a randomized trial that high EGFR ligand expression is predictive of panitumumab benefit in advanced colorectal cancer. Tumor expression of HER3 may further refine the RAS wild-type (wt) population benefitting from anti-EGFR agents. Objective:To examine HER3 messenger RNA expression as a prognostic and predictive biomarker for anti-EGFR therapy in a randomized clinical trial of panitumumab. Design, Setting, and Participants:The study was a prospectively planned retrospective biomarker study of pretreatment samples from the PICCOLO trial that tested the addition of panitumumab to irinotecan therapy in patients with KRAS wt advanced colorectal cancer who experienced failure with prior fluoropyrimidine treatment. HER3 was assessed as a prognostic marker, then as a predictive biomarker in patients with RAS wt, first as a continuous variable and then as a binary (high vs low) variable. Relationship with MEK-AKT pathway mutations and EGFR ligands epiregulin and amphiregulin (EREG/AREG) were also assessed. Main Outcomes and Measures:Primary end point was progression-free survival (PFS); secondary end points were response rate and overall survival (OS). Results:In 308 patients (mean age at randomization, 61.6 years; 193 men) higher HER3 was weakly prognostic for OS (hazard ratio [HR] per 2-fold change, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.83-0.99; P?=?.04) but not PFS (HR, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.83-1.05; P?=?.25). Higher HER3 was predictive, being associated with prolonged PFS on irinotecan plus panitumumab (IrPan) (HR, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.61-0.82; P?<?.001), but not irinotecan (HR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.82-1.13; P?=?.65) in patients with RAS wt, with significant interaction between biomarker and treatment (P?=?.001). Similar interaction was seen for OS (P?=?.004). In an exploratory binary model, dividing the population at the 66th percentile, HER3 was predictive of panitumumab benefit: in patients with high HER3 expression, median PFS was 8.2 months (IrPan) vs 4.4 months (irinotecan) (HR, 0.33; 95% CI, 0.19-0.58; P?<?.001). Patients with low HER3 expression gained no benefit in PFS: 3.3 months (IrPan) vs 4.3 months (irinotecan) (HR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.67-1.38; P?=?.84), with significant interaction (P?=?.002). The binary model was also predictive for OS, with significant interaction (P?=?.01). Combining HER3 and ligand data, patients with HER3-high, AREG/EREG-high tumors gained markedly from panitumumab (PFS HR, 0.24; 95% CI, 0.11-0.51; P?<?.005 and OS HR, 0.36; 95% CI, 0.18-0.73; P?=?.004). Conversely, patients with HER3-low, AREG/EREG-low tumors did not benefit (PFS HR, 1.14; 95% CI, 0.73-1.79; P?=?.57 and OS HR, 1.44; 95% CI, 0.92-2.26; P?=?.11). Conclusions and Relevance:High HER3 expression identified patients with RAS wt who gained markedly from panitumumab, and those who did not, with statistically significant biomarker-treatment interactions for PFS and OS. This finding provides insight into the mechanism of anti-EGFR agents and is of potential clinical utility.
Project description:Skin toxicity is a known clinical signature used to predict the prognosis of anti-epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) antibody treatment in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). There are no biological markers to predict skin toxicity before anti-EGFR antibody treatment in mCRC patients. Between August 2008 and August 2011, pretreatment serum samples were obtained from KRAS wild-type (WT) patients who received anti-EGFR antibody treatment. Serum levels of ligands were measured by ELISA. A total of 103 KRAS WT patients were enrolled in the study. Progression-free survival and overall survival of patients with a high grade (grade 2-3) of skin toxicity were significantly longer than those with a low grade (grade 0-1) of skin toxicity (median progression-free survival, 6.4 months vs 2.4 months, P < 0.001; median overall survival, 14.6 months vs 7.1 months, P = 0.006). There were significant differences in distribution of serum levels of epiregulin (EREG), amphiregulin (AREG), and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) between groups of low/high grade of skin toxicity (P < 0.048, P < 0.012, P < 0.012, respectively). In addition, serum levels of HGF, EREG, and AREG were inversely proportional to grades of skin toxicity as determined by the Cochran-Armitage test (P = 0.019, P = 0.047, P = 0.021, respectively). Our study indicated that serum levels such as HGF, EREG, and AREG may be significant markers to predict the grade of skin toxicity and the prognosis of anti-EGFR antibody treatment, which contribute to improvement of the management of skin toxicity and survival time in mCRC patients.
Project description:Aberrant DNA methylation patterns are a common theme across all cancer types. Specific DNA demethylation of regulatory sequences can result in upregulation of genes that are critical for tumor development and progression. Integrin ?6?4 is highly expressed in pancreatic carcinoma and contributes to cancer progression, in part, through the specific DNA demethylation and upregulation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) ligands amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin (EREG). Whole genome bisulfite sequencing (WGBS) revealed that integrin ?6?4 signaling promotes an overall hypomethylated state and site specific DNA demethylation of enhancer elements within the proximal promoters of AREG and EREG. Additionally, we find that the base excision repair (BER) pathway is required to maintain expression of AREG and EREG, as blocking DNA repair molecules, TET1 GADD45A, TDG, or PARP-1 decreased gene expression. Likewise, we provide the novel finding that integrin ?6?4 confers an enhanced ability on cells to repair DNA lesions and survive insult. Therefore, while many known signaling functions mediated by integrin ?6?4 that promote invasive properties have been established, this study demonstrates that integrin ?6?4 can dramatically impact the epigenome of cancer cells, direct global DNA methylation levels toward a hypomethylated state, and impact DNA repair and subsequent cell survival.
Project description:Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tumor samples from CALGB 80203 were analyzed for expression of EGFR axis-related genes to identify prognostic or predictive biomarkers for cetuximab treatment.Patients (238 total) with first-line metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) were randomized to FOLFOX or FOLFIRI chemotherapy ± cetuximab. qRT-PCR analyses were conducted on tissues from 103 patients at baseline to measure gene expression levels of HER-related genes, including amphiregulin (AREG), betacellulin (BTC), NT5E (CD73), DUSP4, EGF, EGFR, epigen (EPGN), epiregulin (EREG), HBEGF, ERBB2 (HER2), ERBB3 (HER3), ERBB4 (HER4), PHLDA1, and TGFA. The interactions between expression levels and treatment with respect to progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were modeled using multiplicative Cox proportional hazards models.High tumor mRNA levels of HER2 [hazard ratio (HR), 0.64; P = 0.002] and EREG (HR, 0.89; P = 0.016) were prognostic markers associated with longer PFS across all patients. HER3 and CD73 expression levels were identified as potential predictive markers of benefit from cetuximab. In KRAS wild-type (WT) tumors, low HER3 expression was associated with longer OS from cetuximab treatment, whereas high HER3 expression was associated with shorter OS from cetuximab treatment (chemo + cetuximab: HR, 1.15; chemo-only: HR, 0.48; Pinteraction = 0.029). High CD73 expression was associated with longer PFS from cetuximab treatment in patients with KRAS-WT (chemo + cetuximab: HR, 0.91; chemo-only: HR, 1.57; Pinteraction = 0.026) and KRAS-mutant (Mut) tumors (chemo + cetuximab: HR, 0.80; chemo-only: HR, 1.29; P = 0.025).Gene expression of HER3 and CD73 was identified as a potential predictive marker for cetuximab. These data implicate HER axis signaling and immune modulation as potential mechanisms of cetuximab action and sensitivity.
Project description:Previous studies have reported that alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) isoenzymes possess diagnostic value in gastric cancer (GC). However, the prognostic value of ADH isoenzymes in GC remains unclear. The aim of the present study was to identify the prognostic value of ADH genes in patients with GC. The prognostic value of ADH genes was investigated in patients with GC using the Kaplan-Meier plotter tool. Kaplan-Meier plots were used to assess the difference between groups of patients with GC with different prognoses. Hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were used to assess the relative risk of GC survival. Overall, 593 patients with GC and 7 ADH genes were included in the survival analysis. High expression of ADH 1A (class 1), ? polypeptide (ADH1A; log-rank P=0.043; HR=0.79; 95% CI: 0.64-0.99), ADH 1B (class 1), ? polypeptide (ADH1B; log-rank P=1.9×10-05; HR=0.65; 95% CI: 0.53-0.79) and ADH 5 (class III), ? polypeptide (ADH5; log-rank P=0.0011; HR=0.73; 95% CI: 0.6-0.88) resulted in a significantly decreased risk of mortality in all patients with GC compared with patients with low expression of those genes. Furthermore, protective effects may additionally be observed in patients with intestinal-type GC with high expression of ADH1B (log-rank P=0.031; HR=0.64; 95% CI: 0.43-0.96) and patients with diffuse-type GC with high expression of ADH1A (log-rank P=0.014; HR=0.51; 95% CI: 0.3-0.88), ADH1B (log-rank P=0.04; HR=0.53; 95% CI: 0.29-0.98), ADH 4 (class II), ? polypeptide (log-rank P=0.033; HR=0.58; 95% CI: 0.35-0.96) and ADH 6 (class V) (log-rank P=0.037; HR=0.59; 95% CI: 0.35-0.97) resulting in a significantly decreased risk of mortality compared with patients with low expression of those genes. In contrast, patients with diffuse-type GC with high expression of ADH5 (log-rank P=0.044; HR=1.66; 95% CI: 1.01-2.74) were significantly correlated with a poor prognosis. The results of the present study suggest that ADH1A and ADH1B may be potential prognostic biomarkers of GC, whereas the prognostic value of other ADH genes requires further investigation.