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Mar V.J.,Molecular Oncology Laboratory | Mar V.J.,Alfred Hospital | Mar V.J.,Monash University | Wong S.Q.,Molecular Pathology Research and Development Laboratory | And 24 more authors.
Clinical Cancer Research | Year: 2013

Purpose: The mutation load in melanoma is generally high compared with other tumor types due to extensive UV damage. Translation of exome sequencing data into clinically relevant information is therefore challenging. This study sought to characterize mutations identified in primary cutaneous melanomas and correlate these with clinicopathologic features. Experimental Design: DNA was extracted from 34 fresh-frozen primary cutaneous melanomas and matched peripheral blood. Tumor histopathology was reviewed by two dermatopathologists. Exome sequencing was conducted and mutation rates were correlated with age, sex, tumor site, and histopathologic variables. Differences in mutations between categories of solar elastosis, pigmentation, and BRAF/NRAS mutational status were investigated. Results: The average mutation rate was 12 per megabase, similar to published results in metastases. The average mutation rate in severely sun damaged (SSD) skin was 21 per Mb compared with 3.8 per Mb in non-SSD skin (P = 0.001). BRAF/NRAS wild-type (WT) tumors had a higher average mutation rate compared with BRAF/NRAS-mutant tumors (27 vs. 5.6 mutations per Mb; P = 0.0001). Tandem CC>TT/GG>AA mutations comprised 70% of all dinucleotide substitutions and were more common in tumors arising in SSD skin (P = 0.0008) and in BRAF/NRAS WT tumors (P = 0.0007). Targetable and potentially targetable mutations in WT tumors, including NF1, KIT, and NOTCH1, were spread over various signaling pathways. Conclusion: Melanomas arising in SSD skin have higher mutation loads and contain a spectrum of molecular subtypes compared with BRAF- and NRAS-mutant tumors indicating multigene screening approaches and combination therapies may be required for management of these patients. ©2013 AACR.

Busuttil R.A.,Peter MacCallum Cancer Center | Busuttil R.A.,University of Melbourne | Busuttil R.A.,Royal Melbourne Hospital | Zapparoli G.V.,Molecular Pathology Research and Development Laboratory | And 20 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2014

Intestinal metaplasia (IM) is a premalignant lesion associated with gastric cancer (GC) but is poorly described in terms of molecular changes. Here, we explored the role of TP53, a commonly mutated gene in GC, to determine if p53 protein expression and/or the presence of somatic mutations in TP53 can be used as a predictive marker for patients at risk of progressing to GC from IM. Immunohistochemistry and high resolution melting were used to determine p53 protein expression and TP53 mutation status respectively in normal gastric mucosa, IM without concurrent GC (IM-GC), IM with concurrent GC (IM+GC) and GC. This comparative study revealed an incremental increase in p53 expression levels with progression of disease from normal mucosa, via an IM intermediate to GC. TP53 mutations however, were not detected in IM but occurred frequently in GC. Further, we identified increased protein expression of Mdm2/x, both powerful regulators of p53, in 100% of the IM+GC cohort with these samples also exhibiting high levels of wild-type p53 protein. Our data suggests that TP53 mutations occur late in gastric carcinogenesis contributing to the final transition to cancer. We also demonstrated involvement of Mdmx in GC.

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