Publications by authors named "Ina Felau"

11 Publications

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Whole-genome characterization of lung adenocarcinomas lacking the RTK/RAS/RAF pathway.

Cell Rep 2021 Feb;34(5):108707

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA, USA.

RTK/RAS/RAF pathway alterations (RPAs) are a hallmark of lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD). In this study, we use whole-genome sequencing (WGS) of 85 cases found to be RPA(-) by previous studies from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) to characterize the minority of LUADs lacking apparent alterations in this pathway. We show that WGS analysis uncovers RPA(+) in 28 (33%) of the 85 samples. Among the remaining 57 cases, we observe focal deletions targeting the promoter or transcription start site of STK11 (n = 7) or KEAP1 (n = 3), and promoter mutations associated with the increased expression of ILF2 (n = 6). We also identify complex structural variations associated with high-level copy number amplifications. Moreover, an enrichment of focal deletions is found in TP53 mutant cases. Our results indicate that RPA(-) cases demonstrate tumor suppressor deletions and genome instability, but lack unique or recurrent genetic lesions compensating for the lack of RPAs. Larger WGS studies of RPA(-) cases are required to understand this important LUAD subset.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2021.108707DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8009291PMC
February 2021

Comprehensive Analysis of Genetic Ancestry and Its Molecular Correlates in Cancer.

Cancer Cell 2020 05;37(5):639-654.e6

The Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, Cambridge, MA 02142, USA; Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA 02215, USA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA; Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA 02115, USA; Department of Cancer Biology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA 02215, USA. Electronic address:

We evaluated ancestry effects on mutation rates, DNA methylation, and mRNA and miRNA expression among 10,678 patients across 33 cancer types from The Cancer Genome Atlas. We demonstrated that cancer subtypes and ancestry-related technical artifacts are important confounders that have been insufficiently accounted for. Once accounted for, ancestry-associated differences spanned all molecular features and hundreds of genes. Biologically significant differences were usually tissue specific but not specific to cancer. However, admixture and pathway analyses suggested some of these differences are causally related to cancer. Specific findings included increased FBXW7 mutations in patients of African origin, decreased VHL and PBRM1 mutations in renal cancer patients of African origin, and decreased immune activity in bladder cancer patients of East Asian origin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ccell.2020.04.012DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7328015PMC
May 2020

Before and After: Comparison of Legacy and Harmonized TCGA Genomic Data Commons' Data.

Cell Syst 2019 07;9(1):24-34.e10

National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.

We present a systematic analysis of the effects of synchronizing a large-scale, deeply characterized, multi-omic dataset to the current human reference genome, using updated software, pipelines, and annotations. For each of 5 molecular data platforms in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA)-mRNA and miRNA expression, single nucleotide variants, DNA methylation and copy number alterations-comprehensive sample, gene, and probe-level studies were performed, towards quantifying the degree of similarity between the 'legacy' GRCh37 (hg19) TCGA data and its GRCh38 (hg38) version as 'harmonized' by the Genomic Data Commons. We offer gene lists to elucidate differences that remained after controlling for confounders, and strategies to mitigate their impact on biological interpretation. Our results demonstrate that the hg19 and hg38 TCGA datasets are very highly concordant, promote informed use of either legacy or harmonized omics data, and provide a rubric that encourages similar comparisons as new data emerge and reference data evolve.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cels.2019.06.006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6707074PMC
July 2019

The chromatin accessibility landscape of primary human cancers.

Science 2018 10;362(6413)

We present the genome-wide chromatin accessibility profiles of 410 tumor samples spanning 23 cancer types from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). We identify 562,709 transposase-accessible DNA elements that substantially extend the compendium of known cis-regulatory elements. Integration of ATAC-seq (the assay for transposase-accessible chromatin using sequencing) with TCGA multi-omic data identifies a large number of putative distal enhancers that distinguish molecular subtypes of cancers, uncovers specific driving transcription factors via protein-DNA footprints, and nominates long-range gene-regulatory interactions in cancer. These data reveal genetic risk loci of cancer predisposition as active DNA regulatory elements in cancer, identify gene-regulatory interactions underlying cancer immune evasion, and pinpoint noncoding mutations that drive enhancer activation and may affect patient survival. These results suggest a systematic approach to understanding the noncoding genome in cancer to advance diagnosis and therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.aav1898DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6408149PMC
October 2018

Integrative Molecular Characterization of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

Cancer Discov 2018 12 15;8(12):1548-1565. Epub 2018 Oct 15.

Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a highly lethal cancer of the lining of the chest cavity. To expand our understanding of MPM, we conducted a comprehensive integrated genomic study, including the most detailed analysis of alterations to date. We identified histology-independent molecular prognostic subsets, and defined a novel genomic subtype with and mutations and extensive loss of heterozygosity. We also report strong expression of the immune-checkpoint gene in epithelioid MPM, strikingly higher than in other solid cancers, with implications for the immune response to MPM and for its immunotherapy. Our findings highlight new avenues for further investigation of MPM biology and novel therapeutic options. SIGNIFICANCE: Through a comprehensive integrated genomic study of 74 MPMs, we provide a deeper understanding of histology-independent determinants of aggressive behavior, define a novel genomic subtype with and mutations and extensive loss of heterozygosity, and discovered strong expression of the immune-checkpoint gene in epithelioid MPM...
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/2159-8290.CD-18-0804DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6310008PMC
December 2018

Integrated Molecular Characterization of Testicular Germ Cell Tumors.

Cell Rep 2018 06;23(11):3392-3406

The Eli and Edythe L. Broad Institute of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02142, USA.

We studied 137 primary testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) using high-dimensional assays of genomic, epigenomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic features. These tumors exhibited high aneuploidy and a paucity of somatic mutations. Somatic mutation of only three genes achieved significance-KIT, KRAS, and NRAS-exclusively in samples with seminoma components. Integrated analyses identified distinct molecular patterns that characterized the major recognized histologic subtypes of TGCT: seminoma, embryonal carcinoma, yolk sac tumor, and teratoma. Striking differences in global DNA methylation and microRNA expression between histology subtypes highlight a likely role of epigenomic processes in determining histologic fates in TGCTs. We also identified a subset of pure seminomas defined by KIT mutations, increased immune infiltration, globally demethylated DNA, and decreased KRAS copy number. We report potential biomarkers for risk stratification, such as miRNA specifically expressed in teratoma, and others with molecular diagnostic potential, such as CpH (CpA/CpC/CpT) methylation identifying embryonal carcinomas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2018.05.039DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6075738PMC
June 2018

The Integrated Genomic Landscape of Thymic Epithelial Tumors.

Cancer Cell 2018 02;33(2):244-258.e10

National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.

Thymic epithelial tumors (TETs) are one of the rarest adult malignancies. Among TETs, thymoma is the most predominant, characterized by a unique association with autoimmune diseases, followed by thymic carcinoma, which is less common but more clinically aggressive. Using multi-platform omics analyses on 117 TETs, we define four subtypes of these tumors defined by genomic hallmarks and an association with survival and World Health Organization histological subtype. We further demonstrate a marked prevalence of a thymoma-specific mutated oncogene, GTF2I, and explore its biological effects on multi-platform analysis. We further observe enrichment of mutations in HRAS, NRAS, and TP53. Last, we identify a molecular link between thymoma and the autoimmune disease myasthenia gravis, characterized by tumoral overexpression of muscle autoantigens, and increased aneuploidy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ccell.2018.01.003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5994906PMC
February 2018

Integrative Analysis Identifies Four Molecular and Clinical Subsets in Uveal Melanoma.

Cancer Cell 2017 08;32(2):204-220.e15

Department of Surgical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

Comprehensive multiplatform analysis of 80 uveal melanomas (UM) identifies four molecularly distinct, clinically relevant subtypes: two associated with poor-prognosis monosomy 3 (M3) and two with better-prognosis disomy 3 (D3). We show that BAP1 loss follows M3 occurrence and correlates with a global DNA methylation state that is distinct from D3-UM. Poor-prognosis M3-UM divide into subsets with divergent genomic aberrations, transcriptional features, and clinical outcomes. We report change-of-function SRSF2 mutations. Within D3-UM, EIF1AX- and SRSF2/SF3B1-mutant tumors have distinct somatic copy number alterations and DNA methylation profiles, providing insight into the biology of these low- versus intermediate-risk clinical mutation subtypes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ccell.2017.07.003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5619925PMC
August 2017

Comprehensive Molecular Characterization of Papillary Renal-Cell Carcinoma.

N Engl J Med 2016 Jan 4;374(2):135-45. Epub 2015 Nov 4.

Background: Papillary renal-cell carcinoma, which accounts for 15 to 20% of renal-cell carcinomas, is a heterogeneous disease that consists of various types of renal cancer, including tumors with indolent, multifocal presentation and solitary tumors with an aggressive, highly lethal phenotype. Little is known about the genetic basis of sporadic papillary renal-cell carcinoma, and no effective forms of therapy for advanced disease exist.

Methods: We performed comprehensive molecular characterization of 161 primary papillary renal-cell carcinomas, using whole-exome sequencing, copy-number analysis, messenger RNA and microRNA sequencing, DNA-methylation analysis, and proteomic analysis.

Results: Type 1 and type 2 papillary renal-cell carcinomas were shown to be different types of renal cancer characterized by specific genetic alterations, with type 2 further classified into three individual subgroups on the basis of molecular differences associated with patient survival. Type 1 tumors were associated with MET alterations, whereas type 2 tumors were characterized by CDKN2A silencing, SETD2 mutations, TFE3 fusions, and increased expression of the NRF2-antioxidant response element (ARE) pathway. A CpG island methylator phenotype (CIMP) was observed in a distinct subgroup of type 2 papillary renal-cell carcinomas that was characterized by poor survival and mutation of the gene encoding fumarate hydratase (FH).

Conclusions: Type 1 and type 2 papillary renal-cell carcinomas were shown to be clinically and biologically distinct. Alterations in the MET pathway were associated with type 1, and activation of the NRF2-ARE pathway was associated with type 2; CDKN2A loss and CIMP in type 2 conveyed a poor prognosis. Furthermore, type 2 papillary renal-cell carcinoma consisted of at least three subtypes based on molecular and phenotypic features. (Funded by the National Institutes of Health.).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1056/NEJMoa1505917DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4775252PMC
January 2016