Gene Panel Tumor Testing in Ovarian Cancer Patients Significantly Increases the Yield of Clinically Actionable Germline Variants beyond BRCA1/BRCA2.
ABSTRACT: Since the approval of PARP inhibitors for the treatment of high-grade serous ovarian cancer, in addition to cancer risk assessment, BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic testing also has therapeutic implications (germline and somatic variants) and should be offered to these patients at diagnosis, irrespective of family history. However, variants in other genes besides BRCA1 and BRCA2 are associated with ovarian cancer predisposition, which would be missed by a genetic testing aimed only at indication for PARP inhibitor treatment. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the yield of clinically actionable germline variants using next-generation sequencing of a customized panel of 10 genes for the analysis of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded samples from 96 ovarian carcinomas, a strategy that allows the detection of both somatic and germline variants in a single test. In addition to 13.7% of deleterious germline BRCA1/BRCA2 carriers, we identified 7.4% additional patients with pathogenic germline variants in other genes predisposing for ovarian cancer, namely RAD51C, RAD51D, and MSH6, representing 35% of all pathogenic germline variants. We conclude that the strategy of reflex gene-panel tumor testing enables the identification of clinically actionable germline variants in a significantly higher proportion of ovarian cancer patients, which may be valuable information in patients with advanced disease that have run out of approved therapeutic options. Furthermore, this approach increases the chance to make available genetic counseling, presymptomatic genetic testing, and gynecological cancer prophylaxis to female relatives who turn out to be healthy carriers of deleterious germline variants.
Project description:Deleterious variants in the BRCA1/BRCA2 genes and homologous recombination deficiency (HRD) status are considered strong predictors of response to poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitors (PARPi). The introduction of PARPi in clinical practice for the treatment of patients with advanced ovarian cancer imposed changes in the molecular diagnosis of BRCA1/BRCA2 variants. BRCA1/BRCA2 tumor testing by next-generation sequencing (NGS) can detect simultaneously both somatic and germline variants, allowing the identification of more patients with higher likelihood of benefiting from PARPi. Our main goal was to determine the frequency of somatic and germline BRCA1/BRCA2 variants in a series of non-mucinous OC, and to define the best strategy to be implemented in a routine diagnostic setting for the screening of germline/somatic variants in these genes, including the BRCA2 c.156_157insAlu Portuguese founder variant. We observed a frequency of 19.3% of deleterious variants, 13.3% germline, and 5.9% somatic. A higher prevalence of pathogenic variants was observed in patients diagnosed with high-grade serous ovarian cancer (23.2%). Considering the frequencies of the c.3331_3334del and the c.2037delinsCC BRCA1 variants observed in this study (73% of all BRCA1 pathogenic germline variants identified) and the limitations of NGS to detect the BRCA2 c.156_157insAlu variant, it might be cost-effective to test for these founder variants with a specific test prior to tumor screening of the entire coding regions of BRCA1 and BRCA2 by NGS in patients of Portuguese ancestry.
Project description:Clinical genetic testing for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC) is becoming widespread. However, the interpretation of variants of unknown significance (VUS) in HBOC genes, such as the clinically actionable genes BRCA1 and BRCA2, remain a challenge. Among the variants that are frequently classified as VUS are those with unclear effects on splicing. In order to address this issue we developed a high-throughput RNA-massively parallel sequencing assay-CloneSeq-capable to perform quantitative and qualitative analysis of transcripts in cell lines and HBOC patients. This assay is based on cloning of RT-PCR products followed by massive parallel sequencing of the cloned transcripts. To validate this assay we compared it to the RNA splicing assays recommended by members of the ENIGMA (Evidence-based Network for the Interpretation of Germline Mutant Alleles) consortium. This comparison was performed using well-characterized lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) generated from carriers of the BRCA1 or BRCA2 germline variants that have been previously described to be associated with splicing defects. CloneSeq was able to replicate the ENIGMA results, in addition to providing quantitative characterization of BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline splicing alterations in a high-throughput fashion. Furthermore, CloneSeq was used to analyze blood samples obtained from carriers of BRCA1 or BRCA2 germline sequence variants, including the novel uncharacterized alteration BRCA1 c.5152+5G>T, which was identified in a HBOC family. CloneSeq provided a high-resolution picture of all the transcripts induced by BRCA1 c.5152+5G>T, indicating it results in significant levels of exon skipping. This analysis proved to be important for the classification of BRCA1 c.5152+5G>T as a clinically actionable likely pathogenic variant. Reclassifications such as these are fundamental in order to offer preventive measures, targeted treatment, and pre-symptomatic screening to the correct individuals.
Project description:PURPOSE:To characterize the spectrum of BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic germline variants in women from south-west Poland and west Ukraine affected with breast or ovarian cancer. Testing in women at high risk of breast and ovarian cancer in these regions is currently mainly limited to founder mutations. METHODS:Unrelated women affected with breast and/or ovarian cancer from Poland (n = 337) and Ukraine (n = 123) were screened by targeted sequencing. Excluded from targeted sequencing were 34 Polish women who had previously been identified as carrying a founder mutation in BRCA1. No prior testing had been conducted among the Ukrainian women. Thus, this study screened BRCA1 and BRCA2 in the germline DNA of 426 women in total. RESULTS:We identified 31 and 18 women as carriers of pathogenic/likely pathogenic (P/LP) genetic variants in BRCA1 and BRCA2, respectively. We observed five BRCA1 and eight BRCA2 P/LP variants (13/337, 3.9%) in the Polish women. Combined with the 34/337 (10.1%) founder variants identified prior to this study, the overall P/LP variant frequency in the Polish women was thus 14% (47/337). Among the Ukrainian women, 16/123 (13%) women were identified as carrying a founder mutation and 20/123 (16.3%) were found to carry non-founder P/LP variants (10 in BRCA1 and 10 in BRCA2). CONCLUSIONS:These results indicate that genetic testing in women at high risk of breast and ovarian cancer in Poland and Ukraine should not be limited to founder mutations. Extended testing will enhance risk stratification and management for these women and their families.
Project description:Importance:Germline pathogenic variants in BRCA1 and BRCA2 predispose to an increased lifetime risk of breast cancer. However, the relevance of germline variants in other genes from multigene hereditary cancer testing panels is not well defined. Objective:To determine the risks of breast cancer associated with germline variants in cancer predisposition genes. Design, Setting, and Participants:A study population of 65?057 patients with breast cancer receiving germline genetic testing of cancer predisposition genes with hereditary cancer multigene panels. Associations between pathogenic variants in non-BRCA1 and non-BRCA2 predisposition genes and breast cancer risk were estimated in a case-control analysis of patients with breast cancer and Exome Aggregation Consortium reference controls. The women underwent testing between March 15, 2012, and June 30, 2016. Main Outcomes and Measures:Breast cancer risk conferred by pathogenic variants in non-BRCA1 and non-BRCA2 predisposition genes. Results:The mean (SD) age at diagnosis for the 65 057 women included in the analysis was 48.5 (11.1) years. The frequency of pathogenic variants in 21 panel genes identified in 41?611 consecutively tested white women with breast cancer was estimated at 10.2%. After exclusion of BRCA1, BRCA2, and syndromic breast cancer genes (CDH1, PTEN, and TP53), observed pathogenic variants in 5 of 16 genes were associated with high or moderately increased risks of breast cancer: ATM (OR, 2.78; 95% CI, 2.22-3.62), BARD1 (OR, 2.16; 95% CI, 1.31-3.63), CHEK2 (OR, 1.48; 95% CI, 1.31-1.67), PALB2 (OR, 7.46; 95% CI, 5.12-11.19), and RAD51D (OR, 3.07; 95% CI, 1.21-7.88). Conversely, variants in the BRIP1 and RAD51C ovarian cancer risk genes; the MRE11A, RAD50, and NBN MRN complex genes; the MLH1 and PMS2 mismatch repair genes; and NF1 were not associated with increased risks of breast cancer. Conclusions and Relevance:This study establishes several panel genes as high- and moderate-risk breast cancer genes and provides estimates of breast cancer risk associated with pathogenic variants in these genes among individuals qualifying for clinical genetic testing.
Project description:Hereditary breast and ovarian cancers are mainly linked to variants in BRCA1/2 genes. Recently, data has shown that identification of BRCA variants has an immediate impact not only in cancer prevention but also in targeted therapeutic approaches. This prospective observational study characterized the overall germline BRCA variant and variant of uncertain significance (VUS) frequency and spectrum in individuals affected by breast (BC) or ovarian cancer (OC) and in healthy individuals at risk by sequencing the entire BRCA genes. Of the 363 probands analyzed, 50 (13.8%) were BRCA1/2 mutated, 28 (7.7%) at BRCA1 and 23 (6.3%) at BRCA2 gene. The variant c.5266dupC p.(Gln1756Profs) was the most frequent alteration, representing 21.4% of the BRCA1 variants and 12.0% of all variants identified. The variant c.6313delA p.(Ile2105Tyrfs) of BRCA2 was the most frequent alteration observed in 6 patients. Interestingly, two new variants were identified in BRCA2. In addition, 25 different VUS were identified; two were reported for the first time in BRCA1 and two in BRCA2. The number of triple-negative BCs was significantly higher in patients with the pathogenic BRCA1/2-variant (36.4%) than in BRCA1/2 VUS (16.0%) and BRCA1/2 wild-type patients (10.7%) (p < 0.001). Our study reveals that the overall frequency of BRCA germline variants in the selected high-risk Italian population is about 13.8%. We believe that our results could have significant implications for preventive strategies for unaffected BRCA-carriers and effective targeted treatments such as PARP inhibitors for patients with BC or OC.
Project description:<h4>Purpose</h4>Plasma genotyping may identify mutations in potentially "actionable" cancer genes, such as <i>BRCA1/2</i>, but their clinical significance is not well-defined. We evaluated the characteristics of somatically acquired <i>BRCA1/2</i> mutations in patients with metastatic breast cancer (MBC).<h4>Experimental design</h4>Patients with MBC undergoing routine cell-free DNA (cfDNA) next-generation sequencing (73-gene panel) before starting a new therapy were included. Somatic <i>BRCA1/2</i> mutations were classified as known germline pathogenic mutations or novel variants, and linked to clinicopathologic characteristics. The effect of the PARP inhibitor, olaparib, was assessed <i>in vitro</i>, using cultured circulating tumor cells (CTCs) from a patient with a somatically acquired <i>BRCA1</i> mutation and a second patient with an acquired <i>BRCA2</i> mutation.<h4>Results</h4>Among 215 patients with MBC, 29 (13.5%) had somatic cfDNA <i>BRCA1/2</i> mutations [nine (4%) known germline pathogenic and rest (9%) novel variants]. Known germline pathogenic <i>BRCA1/2</i> mutations were common in younger patients (<i>P</i> = 0.008), those with triple-negative disease (<i>P</i> = 0.022), and they were more likely to be protein-truncating alterations and be associated with <i>TP53</i> mutations. Functional analysis of a CTC culture harboring a somatic <i>BRCA1</i> mutation demonstrated high sensitivity to PARP inhibition, while another CTC culture harboring a somatic <i>BRCA2</i> mutation showed no differential sensitivity. Across the entire cohort, APOBEC mutational signatures (COSMIC Signatures 2 and 13) and the "BRCA" mutational signature (COSMIC Signature 3) were present in <i>BRCA1/2-</i>mutant and wild-type cases, demonstrating the high mutational burden associated with advanced MBC.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Somatic <i>BRCA1/2</i> mutations are readily detectable in MBC by cfDNA analysis, and may be present as both known germline pathogenic and novel variants.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Genetic testing is becoming an essential tool for breast cancer (BC) diagnosis and treatment pathway, and particularly important for early detection and cancer prevention. The purpose of this study was to explore the diagnostic yield of targeted sequencing of the high priority BC genes. METHODS:We have utilized a cost-effective targeted sequencing approach of high priority actionable BC genes (BRCA1, BRCA2, ERBB2 and TP53) in a homogeneous patient cohort from Bangladesh (n = 52) by using tumor and blood samples. RESULTS:Blood derived targeted sequencing revealed 25.58% (11/43) clinically relevant mutations (both pathogenic and variants of uncertain significance (VUS)), with 13.95% (6/43) of samples carrying a pathogenic mutations. We have identified and validated five novel pathogenic germline mutations in this cohort, comprising of two frameshift deletions in BRCA2, and missense mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2 and ERBB2 gene respectively. Furthermore, we have identified three pathogenic mutations and a VUS within three tumor samples, including a sample carrying pathogenic mutations impacting both TP53 (c.322dupG; a novel frameshift insertion) and BRCA1 genes (c.116G > A). 22% of tissue samples had a clinically relevant TP53 mutation. Although the cohort is small, we have found pathogenic mutations to be enriched in BRCA2 (9.30%, 4/43) compare to BRCA1 (4.65%, 2/43). The frequency of germline VUS mutations found to be similar in both BRCA1 (4.65%; 2/43) and BRCA2 (4.65%; 2/43) compared to ERBB2 (2.32%; 1/43). CONCLUSIONS:This is the first genetic study of BC predisposition genes in this population, implies that genetic screening through targeted sequencing can detect clinically significant and actionable BC-relevant mutations.
Project description:Approximately 1-5% of breast cancers are attributed to inherited mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2 and are selectively sensitive to poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitors. In other cancer types, germline and/or somatic mutations in BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 (BRCA1/BRCA2) also confer selective sensitivity to PARP inhibitors. Thus, assays to detect BRCA1/BRCA2-deficient tumors have been sought. Recently, somatic substitution, insertion/deletion and rearrangement patterns, or 'mutational signatures', were associated with BRCA1/BRCA2 dysfunction. Herein we used a lasso logistic regression model to identify six distinguishing mutational signatures predictive of BRCA1/BRCA2 deficiency. A weighted model called HRDetect was developed to accurately detect BRCA1/BRCA2-deficient samples. HRDetect identifies BRCA1/BRCA2-deficient tumors with 98.7% sensitivity (area under the curve (AUC) = 0.98). Application of this model in a cohort of 560 individuals with breast cancer, of whom 22 were known to carry a germline BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, allowed us to identify an additional 22 tumors with somatic loss of BRCA1 or BRCA2 and 47 tumors with functional BRCA1/BRCA2 deficiency where no mutation was detected. We validated HRDetect on independent cohorts of breast, ovarian and pancreatic cancers and demonstrated its efficacy in alternative sequencing strategies. Integrating all of the classes of mutational signatures thus reveals a larger proportion of individuals with breast cancer harboring BRCA1/BRCA2 deficiency (up to 22%) than hitherto appreciated (?1-5%) who could have selective therapeutic sensitivity to PARP inhibition.
Project description:Breast cancer patients historically benefitted from population-based genetic research performed in South Africa, which led to the development of founder-based <i>BRCA1/2</i> diagnostic tests. With the advent of next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies, the clinical utility of limited, targeted genetic assays were questioned. The study focused on mining NGS data obtained from an extensive single-institution NGS series (n=763). The aims were to determine (i) the prevalence of the most common recurrent/founder variants in patients referred for NGS directly; and (ii) to explore the data for inferred haplotypes associated with previous and potential new recurrent/founder variants. The identification of additional founder variants was essential for promoting and potentially advancing to rapid founder-based <i>BRCA1/2</i> point-of-care (POC) technology as a time- and cost-effective alternative. NGS revealed actionable <i>BRCA1/2</i> variants in 11.1% of patients tested (<i>BRCA1</i> - 4.7%; <i>BRCA2</i> - 6.4%), of which 22.4% represented variants currently screened for using first-tier targeted genetic testing. A retrospective investigation into the overall mutation-positive rate for an extended cohort (n=1906), which included first-tier test results, revealed that targeted genetic testing identified 74% of all pathogenic variants. This percentage justified the use of targeted genetic testing as a first-tier assay. Inferred haplotype analysis confirmed the founder status of <i>BRCA2</i> c.5771_5774del (rs80359535) and c.7934del (rs80359688) and revealed an additional African founder variant (<i>BRCA2</i> c.582G>A - rs80358810). A risk-benefit analysis using a questionnaire-based survey was performed in parallel to determine genetic professionals' views regarding POC testing. This was done to bridge the clinical implementation gap between haplotype analysis and POC testing as a first-tier screen during risk stratification of breast and ovarian cancer patients. The results reflected high acceptance (94%) of <i>BRCA1/2</i> POC testing when accompanied by genetic counselling. Establishing the founder status for several recurrent <i>BRCA2</i> variants across ethnic groups supports unselected use of the BRCA POC assay in all SA breast/ovarian cancer patients by recent local and international public health recommendations. Incorporating POC genotyping into the planned NGS screening algorithm of the Department of Health will ensure optimal use of the country's recourses to adhere to the set standards for optimal care and management for all breast cancer patients.