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Hangzhou, China

Zhang X.,Hangzhou Cancer Institution | Marjani S.L.,Central Connecticut State University | Hu Z.,Hangzhou Cancer Institution | Weissman S.M.,Yale University | And 4 more authors.
Cancer Research | Year: 2016

Advances in genomic technology have enabled the faithful detection and measurement of mutations and the gene expression profile of cancer cells at the single-cell level. Recently, several single-cell sequencing methods have been developed that permit the comprehensive and precise analysis of the cancer-cell genome, transcriptome, and epigenome. The use of these methods to analyze cancer cells has led to a series of unanticipated discoveries, such as the high heterogeneity and stochastic changes in cancer-cell populations, the new driver mutations and the complicated clonal evolution mechanisms, and the novel identification of biomarkers of variant tumors. Thesemethods and the knowledge gained from their utilization could potentially improve the early detection and monitoring of rare cancer cells, such as circulating tumor cells and disseminated tumor cells, and promote the development of personalized and highly precise cancer therapy. Here, we discuss the current methods for single cancer-cell sequencing, with a strong focus on those practically used or potentially valuable in cancer research, including single-cell isolation, whole genome and transcriptome amplification, epigenome profiling, multi-dimensional sequencing, and next-generation sequencing and analysis. We also examine the current applications, challenges, and prospects of single cancer-cell sequencing. © 2016 American Association for Cancer Research.

Zhang H.,Hangzhou Cancer Institution | Luo H.,Huaian First Peoples Hospital | Hu Z.,Hangzhou Cancer Institution | Peng J.,Huaian First Peoples Hospital | And 8 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2015

Radiotherapy is a primary treatment modality for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). However, most of patients benefited little from radiotherapy due to refractory radioresistance. We found that WISP1, a downstream target gene of Wnt/ß-catenin pathway, was re-expressed in 67.3 % of ESCC patients as an oncofetal gene. Expression of WISP1 predicted prognosis of ESCC patients treated with radiotherapy. Overall survival in WISP1-positive patients was significantly poorer than in WISP1-negative patients. Serum concentration of WISP1 after radiotherapy reversely correlated with relapse-free survival. Gain and loss of function studies confirmed that WISP1 mediated radioresistance both in esophageal squamous cancer cells and in xenograft tumor models. Further studies revealed that WISP1 contributed to radioresistance primarily by repressing irradiation-induced DNA damage and activating PI3K kinase. LncRNA BOKAS was up-regulated following radiation and promoted WISP1 expression and resultant radioresistance. Furthermore, WISP1 facilitated its own expression in response to radiation, creating a positive feedback loop and increased radioresistance. Our study revealed WISP1 as a potential target to overcome radioresistance in ESCC.

Luo H.,Huaian First Peoples Hospital | Li H.,CAS Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences | Hu Z.,Hangzhou Cancer Institution | Wu H.,Hangzhou Cancer Institution | And 12 more authors.
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications | Year: 2016

Circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) is becoming an important biomarker in noninvasive diagnosis and monitoring of tumor dynamics. This study tested the feasibility of plasma ctDNA for the non-invasive analysis of tumor mutations in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) by sequencing of tumor, tumor-adjacent, and normal tissue, as well as pre-surgery and post-surgery plasma. Exome sequencing of eight patients identified between 29 and 134 somatic mutations in ESCCs, many of which were also determined in ctDNA. Comparison of pre-surgery and post-surgery plasma has shown that mutations had reduced frequency or disappeared after surgery treatment. We further evaluated the TruSight Cancer sequencing panel by using it to detect mutations in the plasma of three patients. Tumor mutations were only found in one of them. To design a sequencing panel with improved targeting, we identified significantly mutated genes by meta-analysis of 532 ESCC genomes. Our results confirmed the well-known driver genes and found several uncharacterized genes. The new panel consisted of 90 recurrent genes, which theoretically achieved 94% and 75% of sensitivity when detecting at least 1 and 2 mutant genes in ESCC patients, respectively. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of using ctDNA to detect ESCCs and monitor treatment effect. The low-cost and sensitive target panel could facilitate clinical usage of ctDNA as a noninvasive biomarker. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

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