Publications by authors named "Eitan Friedman"

333 Publications

The predictive ability of the 313 variant-based polygenic risk score for contralateral breast cancer risk prediction in women of European ancestry with a heterozygous BRCA1 or BRCA2 pathogenic variant.

Genet Med 2021 Jun 10. Epub 2021 Jun 10.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, Masaryk Memorial Cancer Institute, Brno, Czech Republic.

Purpose: To evaluate the association between a previously published 313 variant-based breast cancer (BC) polygenic risk score (PRS) and contralateral breast cancer (CBC) risk, in BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic variant heterozygotes.

Methods: We included women of European ancestry with a prevalent first primary invasive BC (BRCA1 = 6,591 with 1,402 prevalent CBC cases; BRCA2 = 4,208 with 647 prevalent CBC cases) from the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2 (CIMBA), a large international retrospective series. Cox regression analysis was performed to assess the association between overall and ER-specific PRS and CBC risk.

Results: For BRCA1 heterozygotes the estrogen receptor (ER)-negative PRS showed the largest association with CBC risk, hazard ratio (HR) per SD = 1.12, 95% confidence interval (CI) (1.06-1.18), C-index = 0.53; for BRCA2 heterozygotes, this was the ER-positive PRS, HR = 1.15, 95% CI (1.07-1.25), C-index = 0.57. Adjusting for family history, age at diagnosis, treatment, or pathological characteristics for the first BC did not change association effect sizes. For women developing first BC < age 40 years, the cumulative PRS 5th and 95th percentile 10-year CBC risks were 22% and 32% for BRCA1 and 13% and 23% for BRCA2 heterozygotes, respectively.

Conclusion: The PRS can be used to refine individual CBC risks for BRCA1/2 heterozygotes of European ancestry, however the PRS needs to be considered in the context of a multifactorial risk model to evaluate whether it might influence clinical decision-making.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-021-01198-7DOI Listing
June 2021

Double heterozygotes of BRCA1/BRCA2 and mismatch repair gene pathogenic variants: case series and clinical implications.

Breast Cancer Res Treat 2021 Jun 4. Epub 2021 Jun 4.

Recanati Genetic Institute, Rabin Medical Center - Beilinson Hospital, 39 Jabotinski St., 4941492, Petach Tikva, Israel.

Background: Hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome (HBOC) and Lynch syndrome (LS), the most common inherited cancer syndromes, are attributed to a single heterozygous pathogenic variant (PV) in BRCA1/2 or in a DNA MMR gene, respectively. Little is known about the phenotype in double heterozygotes who carry PVs in both genes.

Methods: Carriers of double-PVs in any DNA MMR gene and BRCA1/2 attending one of three tertiary oncogenetic clinics between 1/2005 and 1/2020 were identified by database search, and their relevant data were retrieved and analyzed.

Results: Eleven double carriers from four seemingly unrelated Ashkenazi Jewish families were evaluated. All carried an Ashkenazi Jewish founder BRCA PV, BRCA2 c.5946delT/c.6174delT (n = 10) or BRCA1 c.185delAG (n = 1). Four carried the MSH2 c.1906G > C founder PV, and 3, the MSH6 c.3984_3987dupGTCA founder PV; 3 patients had the MSH6 c.3956_3957dup PV. Eight double carriers (73%) had cancer: breast cancer (5 cases, 2 bilateral), melanoma (2 cases), urothelial cancer (2 cases), and colon, endometrial, prostate, cutaneous squamous cell cancer, glioblastoma, gastric stromal tumor, and lymphoma (1 case each). Six carriers had 1-2 tumors, one had 3 tumors, and one had 5 primary tumors. Age at diagnosis of the first tumor was 36-76 years. All carriers met NCCN BRCA1/2 testing criteria, and 3 met the revised Bethesda guidelines.

Conclusions: This case series, supported by the literature, suggests that the phenotype of double MSH2/6 and BRCA1/2 carriers is not associated with early disease onset or a more severe phenotype. The findings have implications for improved genetic testing guidelines and treatment strategies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10549-021-06258-9DOI Listing
June 2021

The spectrum of tumors harboring BAP1 gene alterations.

Cancer Genet 2021 Apr 5;256-257:31-35. Epub 2021 Apr 5.

Oncogenetics Unit, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel. Electronic address:

Germline mutations in the BRCA1-associated protein (BAP1) gene (MIM # 603089) are associated with a substantially increased risk for developing melanoma, mesothelioma, and renal cell carcinoma. Somatic inactivation of the BAP1 gene was noted in these and other tumors types, including esophageal cancer and cholangiocarcinoma. The favorable response of BRCA1/2-associated tumors to poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitor therapy, raises the possibility that tumors harboring BAP1 mutations may exhibit similar sensitivity to PARP inhibitor therapy. Given the possibility that BAP1 alterations may have therapeutic implications, this study was aimed to describe the spectrum of tumors that harbor BAP1 alterations. The Foundation Medicine database was queried for known or likely pathogenic BAP1 genomic variants through July 2019. Overall, 4982/374,694 (1.81%) tumors harbored pathogenic BAP1 genomic alterations. Highest rates were noted in mesothelioma (45.24%), cholangiocarcinoma (13.37%), renal cell carcinoma (10.52%), thymic cancer (8.16%), salivary gland cancer (6.18%), and melanoma (5.1%). There were 59 unique BAP1 short variants detected in at least 10 samples. More same tissue tumors of squamous cell histology harbored BAP1 alterations than adenocarcinomas. The current study highlights tumor types that display higher than previously appreciated rates of somatic BAP1 genomic alterations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cancergen.2021.03.007DOI Listing
April 2021

Fertility treatments and breast cancer risk in Jewish Israeli BRCA mutation carriers.

Fertil Steril 2021 Apr 3. Epub 2021 Apr 3.

Department of Gynecologic Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat-Aviv, Israel.

Objective: To determine whether fertility treatments impact the risk of breast cancer in Jewish Israeli BRCA1/2 mutation carriers.

Design: Historical cohort study.

Setting: University-affiliated tertiary medical center.

Patient(s): A total of 1,824 Jewish Israeli BRCA1/2 mutation carriers from a single center were stratified into 1,492 (81.8%) carriers who were not treated for infertility and 332 (18.2%) carriers who underwent fertility treatment with clomiphene citrate (n = 134), gonadotropin (n = 119), in vitro fertilization (n = 183), or a combination of treatments (n = 89).

Intervention(s): None.

Main Outcome Measure(s): Hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for the association of breast cancer with fertility treatment and other hormonal and reproductive variables.

Result(s): Breast cancer was diagnosed in 687 BRCA1/2 mutation carriers. Multivariate analysis, either of the whole group or stratified by each gene, showed no association between fertility treatment and breast cancer risk, regardless of the type of treatment (clomiphene citrate: HR 0.77, 95% CI 0.49-1.19; gonadotropin: HR 0.54, 95% CI 0.28-1.01; in vitro fertilization: HR 0.65, 95% CI 0.39-1.08; and combined treatments: HR 1.23, 95% CI 0.49-3.06). An increased breast cancer risk was associated with paternal origin of the mutation (HR 1.43, 95% CI 1.17-1.75) and use of oral contraceptives for >5 years (HR 1.62, 95% CI 1.27-2.06) in both BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers. Ovarian cancer risk was decreased with the use of any oral contraceptive (HR 0.61; 95% CI 0.46-0.82).

Conclusion(s): Fertility treatment for BRCA1/2 mutation carriers is not associated with a discernible increase in breast cancer risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fertnstert.2021.02.030DOI Listing
April 2021

Re-evaluating the pathogenicity of the c.783+2T>C BAP1 germline variant.

Hum Mutat 2021 May 3;42(5):592-599. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel.

BAP1 germline pathogenic sequence variants (PSVs) underlie a unique tumor predisposition syndrome (BAP1-TPDS) associated with an increased lifetime risk for developing primarily pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma and uveal and cutaneous melanoma. Overwhelmingly, BAP1 PSVs are unique, family-specific inactivating variants. We identified seven families, six of Jewish Iraqi origin, harboring an identical BAP1 splice variant (c.783+2T>C), currently assigned a "likely pathogenic" status. Given a nonclassical BAP1-TPDS tumor type clustering and low penetrance in these families, the pathogenicity of this variant was re-evaluated by a combined approach including literature analysis, revised bioinformatics analysis, allelic loss, effect on the transcript, and tumor protein expression patterns. None of the three available tumors showed an allelic loss, there was no discernable effect on alternative splicing based on reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction, and there was no decrease or loss of somatic protein expression in 2/3 analyzed tumors. This led to assigning a Benign Strong (BS) criteria, BS4, supporting BS3 criteria, and weakening the Pathogenic Supporting (PP) criteria PP5. Combined, these data suggest that this sequence variant should be reclassified as a variant of unknown significance by American College of Medical Genetics (ACMG) criteria.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/humu.24189DOI Listing
May 2021

A case-only study to identify genetic modifiers of breast cancer risk for BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers.

Nat Commun 2021 02 17;12(1):1078. Epub 2021 Feb 17.

Copenhagen General Population Study, Herlev and Gentofte Hospital Copenhagen University Hospital, Herlev, Denmark.

Breast cancer (BC) risk for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers varies by genetic and familial factors. About 50 common variants have been shown to modify BC risk for mutation carriers. All but three, were identified in general population studies. Other mutation carrier-specific susceptibility variants may exist but studies of mutation carriers have so far been underpowered. We conduct a novel case-only genome-wide association study comparing genotype frequencies between 60,212 general population BC cases and 13,007 cases with BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations. We identify robust novel associations for 2 variants with BC for BRCA1 and 3 for BRCA2 mutation carriers, P < 10, at 5 loci, which are not associated with risk in the general population. They include rs60882887 at 11p11.2 where MADD, SP11 and EIF1, genes previously implicated in BC biology, are predicted as potential targets. These findings will contribute towards customising BC polygenic risk scores for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-20496-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7890067PMC
February 2021

Clinical practice guidelines for BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic testing.

Eur J Cancer 2021 Mar 10;146:30-47. Epub 2021 Feb 10.

BRCA France Association, France. Electronic address:

BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene pathogenic variants account for most hereditary breast cancer and are increasingly used to determine eligibility for PARP inhibitor (PARPi) therapy of BRCA-related cancer. Because issues of BRCA testing in clinical practice now overlap with both preventive and therapeutic management, updated and comprehensive practice guidelines for BRCA genotyping are needed. The integrative recommendations for BRCA testing presented here aim to (1) identify individuals who may benefit from genetic counselling and risk-reducing strategies; (2) update germline and tumour-testing indications for PARPi-approved therapies; (3) provide testing recommendations for personalised management of early and metastatic breast cancer; and (4) address the issues of rapid process and tumour analysis. An international group of experts, including geneticists, medical and surgical oncologists, pathologists, ethicists and patient representatives, was commissioned by the French Society of Predictive and Personalised Medicine (SFMPP). The group followed a methodology based on specific formal guidelines development, including (1) evaluating the likelihood of BRCAm from a combined systematic review of the literature, risk assessment models and expert quotations, and (2) therapeutic values of BRCAm status for PARPi therapy in BRCA-related cancer and for management of early and advanced breast cancer. These international guidelines may help clinicians comprehensively update and standardise BRCA testing practices.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejca.2020.12.023DOI Listing
March 2021

Post-mastectomy surveillance of BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers: Outcomes from a specialized clinic for high-risk breast cancer patients.

Breast J 2021 May 11;27(5):441-447. Epub 2021 Feb 11.

Meirav High Risk Clinic, Department of Diagnostic Imaging, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Ramat-gan, Israel.

Female BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers may elect bilateral risk-reducing mastectomy. There is a paucity of data on yield of imaging surveillance after risk-reducing mastectomy. This retrospective study focused on female BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers who underwent bilateral mastectomy either as primary preventative, or as secondary preventative, after breast cancer diagnosis. All participants underwent breast imaging at 6- to 12-month intervals after mastectomy. Data on subsequent breast cancer diagnosis and timing were collected and compared between the groups. Overall, 184 female mutation carriers (134 BRCA1, 45 BRCA2, 5 both BRCA genes) underwent bilateral mastectomy after initial breast cancer diagnosis, between April 1, 2009 and August 31, 2018. During a mean follow-up of 6.2 ± 4.2 years, 13 (7.06%) were diagnosed with breast cancer; 12 ipsilateral (range: 0.4-28.8 years) and 1 contralateral breast cancer, 15.9 years after surgery. On the contrary, among asymptomatic BRCA1 (n = 40) and BRCA2 (n = 13) mutation carriers who underwent primary risk-reducing mastectomy (mean age at surgery 39.5 ± 8.4 years); none has developed breast cancer after a mean follow-up of 5.4 ± 3.4 years. BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers with prior disease who underwent risk-reducing mastectomy after breast cancer diagnosis are still prone for developing ipsi or contralateral breast cancer, and therefore may benefit from continues clinical and imaging surveillance, unlike BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers who undergo primary preventative bilateral mastectomy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/tbj.14190DOI Listing
May 2021

Double heterozygosity for TP53 and BRCA1 mutations: clinical implications in populations with founder mutations.

Breast Cancer Res Treat 2021 Feb 15;186(1):259-263. Epub 2021 Jan 15.

Oncogenetics Unit, The Institute of Human Genetics, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Israel.

Purpose: The co-occurrence or double heterozygosity of pathogenic/likely pathogenic sequence variants (P/LPSVs) in major cancer susceptibility genes has rarely been reported. Such co-occurrence raises the issues of accurate genetic counseling, preferred recommended surveillance scheme, and the use of preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD).

Methods: A clinical report of an Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ) family with co occurrence of two PSVs in BRCA1 and TP53 and a literature search.

Results: In an AJ family with a substantial history of cancer limited to the maternal side, two siblings co-harbored TP53 (c.733C>A; p.G245S) and the predominant 5266dup BRCA1 mutation, originating from the mother and the father, respectively. PGD is ongoing. Four families were thus far reported as double heterozygotes for both BRCA1/BRCA2 and TP53. Based on the limited available data, it seems that the phenotype in double PSV heterozygotes is not more severe than in single PSV carrier in either gene.

Conclusions: This family highlights the need to genotype both parents, especially in populations with founder mutations, when a BRCA1 mutation is detected in an offspring, regardless of family history. The combination of mutations in these two genes presents a challenge for PGD since both genes are located on chromosome 17.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10549-020-06084-5DOI Listing
February 2021

Locoregional Treatments and Ipsilateral Breast Cancer Recurrence Rates in BRCA1/2 Mutation Carriers.

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 2021 Apr 28;109(5):1332-1340. Epub 2020 Nov 28.

Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel; Breast Radiation Unit, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer, Ramat-Gan, Israel; GROW-School for Oncology and Developmental Biology, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands.

Purpose: There is a paucity of data on the rates of ipsilateral breast tumor recurrence (IBTR) in BRCA1/2-associated breast cancer (BC). Scarcer yet are outcomes data in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers in the setting of newer mastectomy techniques, such as skin-sparing mastectomies (SSM) and nipple-sparing mastectomies (NSM).

Methods: Data were extracted from the medical records of BRCA1/2 carriers who were diagnosed with BC and treated at a single institution between 2006 and 2020. The data extracted included patient demographics, tumor characteristics, disease stage, surgical treatment, use of radiation therapy (RT), and disease outcome.

Results: Overall, 255 BC patients with BRCA1/2 germline mutations were identified. Of these, 128 (50.2%) underwent a mastectomy (SSM or NSM in 82% of them), 76 (59.4%) without postmastectomy RT (non-PMRT) and 52 (40.6%) with PMRT, whereas 127 (49.8%) elected for breast-conserving treatment (BCT). The non-PMRT group had earlier disease stages (82.3% were Tis and T1N0) compared with the PMRT and BCT groups (3.6% and 48.1%, respectively; P < .05). The IBTR cumulative rate was 9 of 76 (11.8%) in the non-PMRT cohort compared with 0 of 52 in the PMRT group (P = .01) and 6 of 127 (4.7%) in the BCT group (P = .06). The cumulative incidences of IBTR at 5 and 10 years were 9.8% and 27.4%, respectively, in the non-PMRT group versus 2% and 11.3%, respectively, in the BCT group (P = .0183). No significant difference in overall survival was observed at the time of follow-up.

Conclusions: BRCA1/2 mutation carriers treated with mastectomy without PMRT had higher rates of IBTR than those who underwent mastectomy and PMRT or BCT, despite earlier stages of disease. The safety of SSM/NSM should be evaluated in a prospective trial.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijrobp.2020.11.058DOI Listing
April 2021

Clinical Characteristics and Prognosis of Gastric Cancer Patients with Germline Mutations: Report of Ten Cases and a Literature Review.

Onco Targets Ther 2020 13;13:11637-11644. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

Department of Oncology, Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer, Israel.

Background: The prognosis of gastric cancer (GC) is poor with a median overall survival (OS) of less than 12 months in advanced-stage disease. The search for distinct genetic subgroups of GC patients and predictive biomarkers is ongoing. While or germline mutations (gBRCAm) have potential therapeutic implications in ovarian, breast and pancreatic cancers, their significance in GC patients has not been established.

Patients And Methods: A retrospective multi-center data analysis of GC patients with gBRCAm was conducted, detailing the clinical characteristics and disease course in this unique subset of patients.

Results: Ten GC patients with gBRCAm were identified, six of them with metastatic disease. The median OS of all ten GC patients was 47.5 (13-192) months. Median OS for patients diagnosed with operable disease was 55.5 (13-192) months and of the patients with metastatic disease (calculated from metastatic disease diagnosis) 32 (15-52) months with an exceptional 1-, 2- and 3-year survival rate of 100%, 83.3% and 50%, respectively.

Conclusion: These preliminary data suggest that gBRCAm in GC patients are associated with a favorable prognosis. Furthermore, gBRCAm might be a predictive biomarker to DNA-damaging agents response in GC patients, similarly to its established role in other malignancies. Further research is needed to confirm our findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/OTT.S276814DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7677647PMC
November 2020

Age at diagnosis of cancer in 185delAG BRCA1 mutation carriers of diverse ethnicities: tentative evidence for modifier factors.

Fam Cancer 2020 Nov 9. Epub 2020 Nov 9.

The Oncogenetics Unit, Institute of Human Genetics, and the Meirav High Risk Clinic, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer, Israel.

Germline pathogenic sequence variants (PSVs) in BRCA1 substantially increase risk for developing breast (BC) and ovarian cancer (OvC). Yet, incomplete penetrance suggests that modifier factors affect phenotypic expression of mutant BRCA1 alleles. Analysis of identical BRCA1 PSV carriers of diverse ethnicities may provide further evidence for modifier factors. Female carriers of the 185delAG BRCA1 PSV identified through high-risk clinics in Israel, and Manchester England from 1998-2018 were eligible. Data were retrieved from patients records and confirmed (in Israel) by cross referencing with the Israeli National Cancer Registry. Overall, 2503 female carriers were included: 1715 (71.4%) Ashkenazi Jews (AJ), 201 (8.3%) Iraqi Jews and 383 (15.9%) of mixed ethnicity. In 102 (4.2%) cases ethnicity could not be ascertained. Of Israeli AJ carriers 649 (37.8%), 256 (14.9%) and 62 (3.6%) were diagnosed with BC, OvC or both cancers, respectively. For the Iraqi Jews these frequencies were 76 (37.8%), 43 (21.4%), and 8 (3.98%), respectively. Age at diagnosis of BC in AJ and Iraqi Jews was 46.7 ± 12.3 years and 52.8 ± 12.2 years, respectively (p = 0.001). For OvC age at diagnosis for AJ was 53.5 ± 10.7 years and for Iraqi Jews 50.1 ± 8.8 years (p = 0.0027). No differences in these parameters were noted between English Jews (n = 110) and non-Jews (n = 32). Age at diagnosis of BC and OvC differs between AJ and Iraqi Jews who carry an identical BRCA1 PSV. This finding supports the existence of modifier factors that may be ethnic specific.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10689-020-00216-yDOI Listing
November 2020

Time trends in uptake rates of risk-reducing mastectomy in Israeli asymptomatic BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers.

Breast Cancer Res Treat 2021 Jan 30;185(2):391-399. Epub 2020 Sep 30.

Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel.

Background: The rate of risk-reducing bilateral mastectomy (RRBM) among cancer-free Israeli female BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers was reportedly 13% in 2010. Current RRBM rates in Israel and factors seemingly associated with opting for RRBM were reevaluated.

Methods: Israeli female cancer-free BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers, who were followed at the high-risk clinic at Sheba Medical Center between January 2011 and April 2020 were eligible. Univariate Cox regression and log-rank test were used to study the crude association between potential predictors and performance of RRBM.

Results: Overall, 427 cancer-free BRCA1 (n = 218) or BRCA2 (n = 209) mutation carriers were included. Median age at genotyping was 33.6 years (interquartile range 26.8-41.8 years), median follow-up 4.4 years (range 0.1-7.6 years). Overall, 41/427 (9.6%) participants underwent RRBM, all of them within 5 years of genotyping. Being married (HR-2.57, p = 0.017) and having a first degree relative with breast cancer (BC) (HR-2.19, p = 0.017) were positively associated with RRBM, whereas any previous benign breast biopsy was negatively associated (HR-0.48, p = 0.029) with performing RRBM.

Conclusions: RRBM is still infrequently elected by Israeli BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers, with married women with one relative with BC who have not undergone previous breast biopsy more likely to opt for RRBM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10549-020-05949-zDOI Listing
January 2021

Common Susceptibility Loci for Male Breast Cancer.

J Natl Cancer Inst 2021 Apr;113(4):453-461

Division of Oncology, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund, Lund University and Skåne University Hospital, Lund, Sweden.

Background: The etiology of male breast cancer (MBC) is poorly understood. In particular, the extent to which the genetic basis of MBC differs from female breast cancer (FBC) is unknown. A previous genome-wide association study of MBC identified 2 predisposition loci for the disease, both of which were also associated with risk of FBC.

Methods: We performed genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism genotyping of European ancestry MBC case subjects and controls in 3 stages. Associations between directly genotyped and imputed single nucleotide polymorphisms with MBC were assessed using fixed-effects meta-analysis of 1380 cases and 3620 controls. Replication genotyping of 810 cases and 1026 controls was used to validate variants with P values less than 1 × 10-06. Genetic correlation with FBC was evaluated using linkage disequilibrium score regression, by comprehensively examining the associations of published FBC risk loci with risk of MBC and by assessing associations between a FBC polygenic risk score and MBC. All statistical tests were 2-sided.

Results: The genome-wide association study identified 3 novel MBC susceptibility loci that attained genome-wide statistical significance (P < 5 × 10-08). Genetic correlation analysis revealed a strong shared genetic basis with estrogen receptor-positive FBC. Men in the top quintile of genetic risk had a fourfold increased risk of breast cancer relative to those in the bottom quintile (odds ratio = 3.86, 95% confidence interval = 3.07 to 4.87, P = 2.08 × 10-30).

Conclusions: These findings advance our understanding of the genetic basis of MBC, providing support for an overlapping genetic etiology with FBC and identifying a fourfold high-risk group of susceptible men.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jnci/djaa101DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8023850PMC
April 2021

Polygenic risk scores and breast and epithelial ovarian cancer risks for carriers of BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic variants.

Genet Med 2020 10 15;22(10):1653-1666. Epub 2020 Jul 15.

Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital, Department of Clinical Genetics, Exeter, UK.

Purpose: We assessed the associations between population-based polygenic risk scores (PRS) for breast (BC) or epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) with cancer risks for BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic variant carriers.

Methods: Retrospective cohort data on 18,935 BRCA1 and 12,339 BRCA2 female pathogenic variant carriers of European ancestry were available. Three versions of a 313 single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) BC PRS were evaluated based on whether they predict overall, estrogen receptor (ER)-negative, or ER-positive BC, and two PRS for overall or high-grade serous EOC. Associations were validated in a prospective cohort.

Results: The ER-negative PRS showed the strongest association with BC risk for BRCA1 carriers (hazard ratio [HR] per standard deviation = 1.29 [95% CI 1.25-1.33], P = 3×10). For BRCA2, the strongest association was with overall BC PRS (HR = 1.31 [95% CI 1.27-1.36], P = 7×10). HR estimates decreased significantly with age and there was evidence for differences in associations by predicted variant effects on protein expression. The HR estimates were smaller than general population estimates. The high-grade serous PRS yielded the strongest associations with EOC risk for BRCA1 (HR = 1.32 [95% CI 1.25-1.40], P = 3×10) and BRCA2 (HR = 1.44 [95% CI 1.30-1.60], P = 4×10) carriers. The associations in the prospective cohort were similar.

Conclusion: Population-based PRS are strongly associated with BC and EOC risks for BRCA1/2 carriers and predict substantial absolute risk differences for women at PRS distribution extremes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-020-0862-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7521995PMC
October 2020

Characterization of the Cancer Spectrum in Men With Germline BRCA1 and BRCA2 Pathogenic Variants: Results From the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2 (CIMBA).

JAMA Oncol 2020 08;6(8):1218-1230

Department of Oncology, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen University Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Importance: The limited data on cancer phenotypes in men with germline BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic variants (PVs) have hampered the development of evidence-based recommendations for early cancer detection and risk reduction in this population.

Objective: To compare the cancer spectrum and frequencies between male BRCA1 and BRCA2 PV carriers.

Design, Setting, And Participants: Retrospective cohort study of 6902 men, including 3651 BRCA1 and 3251 BRCA2 PV carriers, older than 18 years recruited from cancer genetics clinics from 1966 to 2017 by 53 study groups in 33 countries worldwide collaborating through the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2 (CIMBA). Clinical data and pathologic characteristics were collected.

Main Outcomes And Measures: BRCA1/2 status was the outcome in a logistic regression, and cancer diagnoses were the independent predictors. All odds ratios (ORs) were adjusted for age, country of origin, and calendar year of the first interview.

Results: Among the 6902 men in the study (median [range] age, 51.6 [18-100] years), 1634 cancers were diagnosed in 1376 men (19.9%), the majority (922 of 1,376 [67%]) being BRCA2 PV carriers. Being affected by any cancer was associated with a higher probability of being a BRCA2, rather than a BRCA1, PV carrier (OR, 3.23; 95% CI, 2.81-3.70; P < .001), as well as developing 2 (OR, 7.97; 95% CI, 5.47-11.60; P < .001) and 3 (OR, 19.60; 95% CI, 4.64-82.89; P < .001) primary tumors. A higher frequency of breast (OR, 5.47; 95% CI, 4.06-7.37; P < .001) and prostate (OR, 1.39; 95% CI, 1.09-1.78; P = .008) cancers was associated with a higher probability of being a BRCA2 PV carrier. Among cancers other than breast and prostate, pancreatic cancer was associated with a higher probability (OR, 3.00; 95% CI, 1.55-5.81; P = .001) and colorectal cancer with a lower probability (OR, 0.47; 95% CI, 0.29-0.78; P = .003) of being a BRCA2 PV carrier.

Conclusions And Relevance: Significant differences in the cancer spectrum were observed in male BRCA2, compared with BRCA1, PV carriers. These data may inform future recommendations for surveillance of BRCA1/2-associated cancers and guide future prospective studies for estimating cancer risks in men with BRCA1/2 PVs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamaoncol.2020.2134DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7333177PMC
August 2020

Genome-wide association study identifies 32 novel breast cancer susceptibility loci from overall and subtype-specific analyses.

Nat Genet 2020 06 18;52(6):572-581. Epub 2020 May 18.

Molecular Medicine Unit, Fundación Pública Galega de Medicina Xenómica, Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

Breast cancer susceptibility variants frequently show heterogeneity in associations by tumor subtype. To identify novel loci, we performed a genome-wide association study including 133,384 breast cancer cases and 113,789 controls, plus 18,908 BRCA1 mutation carriers (9,414 with breast cancer) of European ancestry, using both standard and novel methodologies that account for underlying tumor heterogeneity by estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 status and tumor grade. We identified 32 novel susceptibility loci (P < 5.0 × 10), 15 of which showed evidence for associations with at least one tumor feature (false discovery rate < 0.05). Five loci showed associations (P < 0.05) in opposite directions between luminal and non-luminal subtypes. In silico analyses showed that these five loci contained cell-specific enhancers that differed between normal luminal and basal mammary cells. The genetic correlations between five intrinsic-like subtypes ranged from 0.35 to 0.80. The proportion of genome-wide chip heritability explained by all known susceptibility loci was 54.2% for luminal A-like disease and 37.6% for triple-negative disease. The odds ratios of polygenic risk scores, which included 330 variants, for the highest 1% of quantiles compared with middle quantiles were 5.63 and 3.02 for luminal A-like and triple-negative disease, respectively. These findings provide an improved understanding of genetic predisposition to breast cancer subtypes and will inform the development of subtype-specific polygenic risk scores.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41588-020-0609-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7808397PMC
June 2020

Germline variant in is a novel candidate gene in familial pheochromocytoma.

Genet Res (Camb) 2020 05 1;102:e3. Epub 2020 May 1.

The Susanne Levy Gertner Oncogenetics Unit, The Danek Gertner Institute of Human Genetics, Tel HaShomer, Israel.

Pheochromocytoma (PCC) is a rare, mostly benign tumour of the adrenal medulla. Hereditary PCC accounts for ~35% of cases and has been associated with germline mutations in several cancer susceptibility genes (e.g., KIF1B, SDHB, VHL, SDHD, RET). We performed whole-exome sequencing in a family with four PCC-affected patients in two consecutive generations and identified a potential novel candidate pathogenic variant in the REXO2 gene that affects splicing (c.531-1G>T (NM 015523.3)), which co-segregated with the phenotype in the family. REXO2 encodes for RNA exonuclease 2 protein and localizes to 11q23, a chromosomal region displaying allelic imbalance in PCC. REXO2 protein has been associated with DNA repair, replication and recombination processes and thus its inactivation may contribute to tumorigenesis. While the study suggests that this novel REXO2 gene variant underlies PCC in this family, additional functional studies are required in order to establish the putative role of the REXO2 gene in PCC predisposition.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0016672320000038DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7214532PMC
May 2020

Genome-wide association meta-analyses combining multiple risk phenotypes provide insights into the genetic architecture of cutaneous melanoma susceptibility.

Nat Genet 2020 05 27;52(5):494-504. Epub 2020 Apr 27.

Department of Dermatology, Instituto Valenciano de Oncología, Valencia, Spain.

Most genetic susceptibility to cutaneous melanoma remains to be discovered. Meta-analysis genome-wide association study (GWAS) of 36,760 cases of melanoma (67% newly genotyped) and 375,188 controls identified 54 significant (P < 5 × 10) loci with 68 independent single nucleotide polymorphisms. Analysis of risk estimates across geographical regions and host factors suggests the acral melanoma subtype is uniquely unrelated to pigmentation. Combining this meta-analysis with GWAS of nevus count and hair color, and transcriptome association approaches, uncovered 31 potential secondary loci for a total of 85 cutaneous melanoma susceptibility loci. These findings provide insights into cutaneous melanoma genetic architecture, reinforcing the importance of nevogenesis, pigmentation and telomere maintenance, together with identifying potential new pathways for cutaneous melanoma pathogenesis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41588-020-0611-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7255059PMC
May 2020

Activating genomic alterations in the Gs alpha gene (GNAS) in 274 694 tumors.

Genes Chromosomes Cancer 2020 09 14;59(9):503-516. Epub 2020 May 14.

Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel.

Activating point mutations in two codons (R201 and Q227) in the alpha subunit of the stimulatory GTP binding protein (GNAS) gene-coined gsp mutations-were originally reported in growth hormone secreting pituitary adenomas. In these tumor types, gsp activating mutations were associated with uncontrolled intracellular cAMP accumulation leading to cellular proliferation and tumor formation. Since the original description of gsp mutations in pituitary and later thyroid neoplasia, many more tumors were genotyped for these specific activating mutations. In this paradigm, GNAS is an oncogene that can be activated by other molecular mechanisms, such as DNA amplification and translocation. Herein, we describe the largest account to date of tumor types that harbor pathogenic GNAS genomic alterations (GAs) including the "classical" gsp activating point mutations, delineate some common features of these tumors, and speculate as to the possible mechanisms whereby GNAS activating GAs are associated with the various stages of tumorigenesis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/gcc.22854DOI Listing
September 2020

Diagnostic yield of multigene panel testing in an Israeli cohort: enrichment of low-penetrance variants.

Breast Cancer Res Treat 2020 Jun 18;181(2):445-453. Epub 2020 Apr 18.

Rabin Medical Center, Recanati Genetics Institute, Beilinson Hospital, Petach Tikva, Israel.

Background: Carriers of pathogenic variants (PVs) in moderate-high-penetrance cancer susceptibility genes are offered tailored surveillance schemes for early cancer diagnosis. The clinical implications of low-penetrance variant carriers are less clear.

Methods: Clinical and demographic data were retrieved for a cohort of Israeli individuals who underwent oncogenetic testing by the 30-gene cancer panel at Color Genomics laboratory, between 04/2013 and 12/2018.

Results: Of 758 genotyped individuals, 504 had been diagnosed with cancer prior to testing: 283 (56%) had breast cancer and 106 (21%) colorectal cancer. Pathogenic or likely pathogenic (P/LP) variants were detected in 123 (16%) individuals. Overall, 44 different P/LP variants were detected in 18/30 cancer susceptibility genes; 20 of them were founder/recurrent mutations. Of the carriers, 39 (32%), 10 (8%), and 74 (60%) carried high-, moderate-, or low-penetrance variants, respectively. After excluding low-penetrance variants, 7% (33/504) of all cancer patients, 6% of breast or ovarian cancer patients were found to be carriers, as well as 7% (14/203) of individuals with colonic polyps, and 4% (11/254) of cancer-free individuals.

Conclusions: The diagnostic yield of moderate- and high-penetrance PVs using multigene panel testing was 6%, with 3.7% carriers of non-recurrent PVs. This yield should be discussed during pre-test counseling, and emphasizes the need for harmonized recommendations regarding clinical implications of low-penetrance variants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10549-020-05633-2DOI Listing
June 2020

Circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) levels in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers: A preliminary study.

Cancer Biomark 2020 ;28(3):269-273

Oncogenetics Unit, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Israel.

Background: Female carriers of BRCA1 or BRCA2 germline mutations are at a substantially increased risk for developing breast and ovarian cancer. The lack of effective early detection schemes for ovarian cancer, mandate surgical removal of adnexa at age 35-40 years in these high-risk women. The role of circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) levels as a marker for early detection in high-risk women has rarely been reported.

Objective: To quantify cfDNA levels in BRCA1BRCA2 carriers.

Methods: Serum cfDNA levels, measured by direct fluorometric assay in cancer-free female BRCA1BRCA2 mutation carriers were compared with cancer-free controls recruited from among women undergoing breast biopsy or routine colonoscopy.

Results: Overall, 10 BRCA1 (185delAG) and 10 BRCA2 (6174delT) mutation carriers, 20 breast biopsy controls, and 20 colonoscopy controls participated. cfDNA levels [Median (95% CI)], were 472 (317-589) ng/ml and 525 (339-621) ng/ml in breast biopsy and colonoscopy controls, respectively. Median levels of cfDNA in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers combined were 921 (835-1087) ng/ml, significantly higher than in both controls (P< 0.0001).

Conclusions: cfDNA levels are significantly higher in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers compared with non-carriers. This finding, if validated, may facilitate development of early detection breast/ovarian cancer biomarker in high-risk women.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/CBM-190718DOI Listing
January 2021

Publisher Correction: The Dopamine D5 receptor contributes to activation of cholinergic interneurons during L-DOPA induced dyskinesia.

Sci Rep 2020 Mar 13;10(1):4974. Epub 2020 Mar 13.

Department of Molecular, Cellular & Biomedical Sciences, CUNY School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA.

An amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-61832-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7067756PMC
March 2020

Transcriptome-wide association study of breast cancer risk by estrogen-receptor status.

Genet Epidemiol 2020 07 1;44(5):442-468. Epub 2020 Mar 1.

Department of Radiation Oncology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.

Previous transcriptome-wide association studies (TWAS) have identified breast cancer risk genes by integrating data from expression quantitative loci and genome-wide association studies (GWAS), but analyses of breast cancer subtype-specific associations have been limited. In this study, we conducted a TWAS using gene expression data from GTEx and summary statistics from the hitherto largest GWAS meta-analysis conducted for breast cancer overall, and by estrogen receptor subtypes (ER+ and ER-). We further compared associations with ER+ and ER- subtypes, using a case-only TWAS approach. We also conducted multigene conditional analyses in regions with multiple TWAS associations. Two genes, STXBP4 and HIST2H2BA, were specifically associated with ER+ but not with ER- breast cancer. We further identified 30 TWAS-significant genes associated with overall breast cancer risk, including four that were not identified in previous studies. Conditional analyses identified single independent breast-cancer gene in three of six regions harboring multiple TWAS-significant genes. Our study provides new information on breast cancer genetics and biology, particularly about genomic differences between ER+ and ER- breast cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/gepi.22288DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7987299PMC
July 2020

Radiation-Associated Secondary Malignancies in BRCA Mutation Carriers Treated for Breast Cancer.

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 2020 06 19;107(2):353-359. Epub 2020 Feb 19.

Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel; Radiation Oncology Department, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Ramat-Gan, Israel. Electronic address:

Purpose: Radiation therapy (RT), a standard breast cancer (BC) treatment modality, is associated with a small increased risk of in-field second primary malignancy (SPM). SPM rates after RT in BRCA mutation carriers have rarely been reported. An elevated risk of SPM would affect the safety of breast conservation for early BC or prophylactic radiation as a method of prevention. We analyzed a population of BRCA carriers irradiated for BC to determine whether there is an elevated rate of SPM.

Methods And Materials: Patients with BC who were BRCA1 or BRCA2 carriers and were treated with breast and/or chest wall RT with or without regional lymph nodes between 1991 and 2012 at a single institution were retrospectively identified. Only those with ≥5 years of follow-up with adequate demographic, tumor, and radiation data were included. SPMs were recorded, and previously delivered RT doses to the organ and site of malignancy were determined.

Results: Two hundred thirty women, of whom 80% carried an Ashkenazi Jewish founder mutation, met entry criteria with 3-dimensional RT delivered to 266 breasts or chest walls, including regional nodes in 110 (41%). With a median follow-up of 10 years (range, 5-27; mean 11.4) comprising 3042 person-years, 6 SPMs developed, of which only 1 (papillary thyroid carcinoma) was within the radiation field (crude rate of 0.38% of irradiated breasts or chest walls), diagnosed 17 years after RT. This corresponds to an incidence of 0.32 per 1000 woman-years. The Kaplan-Meier estimate of 20-year freedom from a radiation-induced SPM is 99.5%. Calculated dose exposure to the out-of-field SPMs ranged from 0.1 to 1 Gy. No patient developed an in-field skin cancer or sarcoma.

Conclusions: In this largest cohort of women treated with radiation therapy for BRCA-associated breast cancer, we identified no signal for an increased risk of radiation-induced SPMs compared with the general BC population, and the risk is extraordinarily small. Although larger cohorts and longer follow-up are needed, these results support the safety of RT in BRCA carriers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijrobp.2020.02.020DOI Listing
June 2020

The Dopamine D5 receptor contributes to activation of cholinergic interneurons during L-DOPA induced dyskinesia.

Sci Rep 2020 02 13;10(1):2542. Epub 2020 Feb 13.

Department of Molecular, Cellular & Biomedical Sciences, CUNY School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA.

The dopamine D5 receptor (D5R) is a Gα-coupled dopamine receptor belonging to the dopamine D1-like receptor family. Together with the dopamine D2 receptor it is highly expressed in striatal cholinergic interneurons and therefore is poised to be a positive regulator of cholinergic activity in response to L-DOPA in the dopamine-depleted parkinsonian brain. Tonically active cholinergic interneurons become dysregulated during chronic L-DOPA administration and participate in the expression of L-DOPA induced dyskinesia. The molecular mechanisms involved in this process have not been elucidated, however a correlation between dyskinesia severity and pERK expression in cholinergic cells has been described. To better understand the function of the D5 receptor and how it affects cholinergic interneurons in L-DOPA induced dyskinesia, we used D5R knockout mice that were rendered parkinsonian by unilateral 6-OHDA injection. In the KO mice, expression of pERK was strongly reduced indicating that activation of these cells is at least in part driven by the D5 receptor. Similarly, pS6, another marker for the activity status of cholinergic interneurons was also reduced. However, mice lacking D5R exhibited slightly worsened locomotor performance in response to L-DOPA and enhanced LID scores. Our findings suggest that D5R can modulate L-DOPA induced dyskinesia and is a critical activator of CINs via pERK and pS6.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-59011-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7018760PMC
February 2020

Germline Mutations in Familial Papillary Thyroid Cancer.

Endocr Pathol 2020 Mar;31(1):14-20

Department of Surgery, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

Thyroid cancer, predominantly of papillary histology (PTC), is a common cancer mostly diagnosed sporadically. Hereditary PTC is encountered in ~ 5% of cases and may present at an earlier age, with greater risks of metastasis and recurrence, compared with sporadic cases. The molecular basis of hereditary PTC is unknown in most cases. In this study, the genetic basis of hereditary PTC in three Brazilian families was investigated. Whole exome sequencing (WES) was carried out for probands in each family, and validated, pathogenic/likely pathogenic sequence variants (P/LPSVs) were genotyped in additional family members to establish their putative pathogenic role. Overall, seven P/LPSVs in seven novel genes were detected: p.D283N*ANXA3, p.Y157S*NTN4, p.G172W*SERPINA1, p.G188S*FKBP10, p.R937C*PLEKHG5, p.L32Q*P2RX5, and p.Q76*SAPCD1. These results indicate that these novel genes are seemingly associated with hereditary PTC, but extension and validation in other PTC families are required.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12022-020-09607-4DOI Listing
March 2020

Fine-mapping of 150 breast cancer risk regions identifies 191 likely target genes.

Nat Genet 2020 01 7;52(1):56-73. Epub 2020 Jan 7.

Unit of Medical Genetics, Department of Medical Oncology and Hematology, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori di Milano, Milan, Italy.

Genome-wide association studies have identified breast cancer risk variants in over 150 genomic regions, but the mechanisms underlying risk remain largely unknown. These regions were explored by combining association analysis with in silico genomic feature annotations. We defined 205 independent risk-associated signals with the set of credible causal variants in each one. In parallel, we used a Bayesian approach (PAINTOR) that combines genetic association, linkage disequilibrium and enriched genomic features to determine variants with high posterior probabilities of being causal. Potentially causal variants were significantly over-represented in active gene regulatory regions and transcription factor binding sites. We applied our INQUSIT pipeline for prioritizing genes as targets of those potentially causal variants, using gene expression (expression quantitative trait loci), chromatin interaction and functional annotations. Known cancer drivers, transcription factors and genes in the developmental, apoptosis, immune system and DNA integrity checkpoint gene ontology pathways were over-represented among the highest-confidence target genes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41588-019-0537-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6974400PMC
January 2020

De novo pathogenic germline variant in PALB2 in a patient with pancreatic cancer.

Fam Cancer 2020 04;19(2):193-196

The Susanne Levy Gertner Oncogenetics Unit, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel-Hashomer, Israel.

De novo mutations in the major breast/ovarian cancer susceptibility genes BRCA1 and BRCA2 are rare. De novo mutations in the PALB2 gene have never been reported. Here we report a de novo PALB2 germ line mutation (c.3455delC (p.Pro1152Hisfs*11) in a patient with pancreatic cancer, where non-paternity and somatic parental mosaicism have to the extent possible been excluded as a mechanism for detecting the de novo mutation. The lack of previous reports on de novo PALB2 mutations maybe the limited number of PALB2germline mutations reported overall.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10689-019-00157-1DOI Listing
April 2020