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Precision oncology using a limited number of cells: optimization of whole genome amplification products for sequencing applications.


ABSTRACT: Sequencing analysis of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) enables "liquid biopsy" to guide precision oncology strategies. However, this requires low-template whole genome amplification (WGA) that is prone to errors and biases from uneven amplifications. Currently, quality control (QC) methods for WGA products, as well as the number of CTCs needed for reliable downstream sequencing, remain poorly defined. We sought to define strategies for selecting and generating optimal WGA products from low-template input as it relates to their potential applications in precision oncology strategies.Single pancreatic cancer cells (HPAF-II) were isolated using laser microdissection. WGA was performed using multiple displacement amplification (MDA), multiple annealing and looping based amplification (MALBAC) and PicoPLEX. Quality of amplified DNA products were assessed using a multiplex/RT-qPCR based method that evaluates for 8-cancer related genes and QC-scores were assigned. We utilized this scoring system to assess the impact of de novo modifications to the WGA protocol. WGA products were subjected to Sanger sequencing, array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) and next generation sequencing (NGS) to evaluate their performances in respective downstream analyses providing validation of the QC-score.Single-cell WGA products exhibited a significant sample-to-sample variability in amplified DNA quality as assessed by our 8-gene QC assay. Single-cell WGA products that passed the pre-analysis QC had lower amplification bias and improved aCGH/NGS performance metrics when compared to single-cell WGA products that failed the QC. Increasing the number of cellular input resulted in improved QC-scores overall, but a resultant WGA product that consistently passed the QC step required a starting cellular input of at least 20-cells. Our modified-WGA protocol effectively reduced this number, achieving reproducible high-quality WGA products from ?5-cells as a starting template. A starting cellular input of 5 to 10-cells amplified using the modified-WGA achieved aCGH and NGS results that closely matched that of unamplified, batch genomic DNA.The modified-WGA protocol coupled with the 8-gene QC serve as an effective strategy to enhance the quality of low-template WGA reactions. Furthermore, a threshold number of 5-10 cells are likely needed for a reliable WGA reaction and product with high fidelity to the original starting template.

SUBMITTER: Sho S 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5493892 | BioStudies | 2017-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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