Molecular Basis of Neuroendocrine Prostate Cancer (Trento/Cornell/Broad 2015)
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A subset of advanced prostate cancers can progress from an androgen receptor (AR)-driven state to AR independence, often associated with low or absent AR expression and extensive neuroendocrine differentiation. Once neuroendocrine prostate cancer (NEPC) develops, patients typically demonstrate an aggressive clinical course and poor overall survival. Early diagnosis is important but remains challenging as the clinical and pathologic features associate with AR independence and NEPC are poorly defined. We performed whole exome sequencing of 114 metastatic tumors from 81 patients (35 with morphologic features of NEPC). Serial or synchronous samples were included to characterize heterogeneity and the transition from adenocarcinoma to NEPC. Computational analysis of clonality and allele specific quantification were performed using CLONET. Quantitative mRNA assessment including AR signaling genes and DNA methylation were evaluated in the context of genomic changes.