Palindromic Amplification of The ERBB2 Oncogene in HER2-Positive Breast Cancer
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DNA Inverted Repeats as an At-risk Motif for Palindromic Gene Amplificatio defines oncogene amplification that is configured as a series of inverted duplications (palindromic gene amplification). There are several, recurrently amplified oncogenes throughout the human genome. However, it remains unclear whether this recurrent amplification is solely a manifestation of increased fitness resulting from random amplification mechanisms, or if genomic locus-specific amplification mechanism plays a role.
In this study, we show that the ERBB2 oncogene at 17q12 is susceptible to palindromic gene amplification in HER2-positive breast tumors. We investigated eight tumors in this study, of which five tumors were HER2-positive, and three tumors were HER2-negative. HER2-status was determined by clinical FISH tests. We applied three genomic approaches to investigate the amplification mechanism: (1) copy number analysis by array-CGH on the Affymetrix SNP6.0 platform (8 files), (2) sequencing of DNA libraries enriched with tumor-derived palindromic DNA (Genome-wide Analysis of Palindrome Formation, GAPF-seq) (8 files) and (3) unbiased whole genome sequencing (WGS) (1 file). These molecular data is made available in the dbGaP.
Genomic studies using tumor DNA was approved under the Internal Institutional Review Board at the Cleveland Clinic (IRB07-136: EXEMPT: Chromosome Breakage and DNA Palindrome Formation). Specimens were obtained and methods were carried out under the auspices of IRB 7881 (Evaluation of Genetic and Molecular Markers in Patients with Breast Cancer). All patients consented to allow their cancer specimens to be used by researchers in an anonymized fashion. The consent form indicates that publication will take place without identifiers to protect the identity of any specific individual.
We observed significant and enrichment of palindromic DNA within amplified ERBB2 genomic segments in four out of five HER2-positive tumors. None of three HER2-negative tumors showed such enrichment. Palindromic DNA was particularly enriched at amplification peaks and boundaries between amplified and normal copy-number regions. Thus, palindromic gene amplification shaped the amplified ERBB2 locus. The moderate enrichment of palindromic DNA throughout the amplified segments leads us to propose that the ERBB2 locus is amplified through a mechanism that repeatedly generates palindromic DNA, such as Breakage-Fusion-Bridge cycles. Our results reveal a potential interaction between local genomic environments and gene amplification mechanisms.
This study is published under the title "Palindromic amplification of the ERBB2 oncogene in primary HER2-positive breast tumors" (PMID:28211519).
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