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Cistrome-partitioning reveals convergence of somatic mutations and risk-variants on master transcription regulators in primary prostate tumors

Thousands of noncoding somatic Single Nucleotide Variants (SNVs) of unknown function are reported in tumors. Partitioning the genome according to cistromes, reveals the enrichment of somatic SNVs in prostate tumors as opposed to adjacent normal tissue cistromes of master transcription regulators, including AR, FOXA1 and HOXB13. This parallels enrichment of prostate cancer genetic predispositions over these transcription regulators’ tumor cistromes, exemplified at the 8q24 locus harboring both risk-variants and somatic SNVs in cis-regulatory elements, upregulating MYC expression and altering the binding of transcription regulators to DNA. However, Massively-Parallel Reporter Assays reveal that few SNVs can alter the transactivation potential of individual CREs. Instead, SNVs accumulate, similarly to inherited riskvariants, in cistromes of master transcription regulators required for prostate cancer development. Difficulties in inferring the biological significance of noncoding mutations have limited their inclusion in precision genomics medicine pipelines. Most attempts to delineate a role for noncoding mutations relied on detecting evidence for positive selection within individual CREs, such as reported for the TERT gene promoter. By considering the enrichment of noncoding mutations in cistromes as opposed to individual CREs, we reveal their specificity towards master transcription regulators that promote prostate cancer development, a feature shared with inherited risk-variants. Overall, our work provides a blueprint for the functional interpretation of noncoding mutations in genomic tests relying on defining cis-regulatory units according to cistrome-partitioning to identify cancer driver transcription regulators.

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Dataset ID Description Technology Samples
EGAD00001005374 Illumina HiSeq 2500 50
Publications Citations
Noncoding mutations target cis-regulatory elements of the FOXA1 plexus in prostate cancer.
Nat Commun 11: 2020 441
Drug-Induced Epigenomic Plasticity Reprograms Circadian Rhythm Regulation to Drive Prostate Cancer toward Androgen Independence.
Cancer Discov 12: 2022 2074-2097