Genome Med 2018 10 31;10(1):81. Epub 2018 Oct 31.
Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, 610 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 2M9, Canada.
Background: Patients diagnosed with high-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) who received initial debulking surgery followed by platinum-based chemotherapy can experience highly variable clinical responses. A small percentage of women experience exceptional long-term survival (long term (LT), 10+ years), while others develop primary resistance to therapy and succumb to disease in less than 2 years (short term (ST)). To improve clinical management of HGSOC, there is a need to better characterize clinical and molecular profiles to identify factors that underpin these disparate survival responses.
Methods: To identify clinical and tumor molecular biomarkers associated with exceptional clinical response or resistance, we conducted an integrated clinical, exome, and transcriptome analysis of 41 primary tumors from LT (n = 20) and ST (n = 21) HGSOC patients.
Results: Younger age at diagnosis, no residual disease post debulking surgery and low CA125 levels following surgery and chemotherapy were clinical characteristics of LT. Tumors from LT survivors had increased somatic mutation burden (median 1.62 vs. 1.22 non-synonymous mutations/Mbp), frequent BRCA1/2 biallelic inactivation through mutation and loss of heterozygosity, and enrichment of activated CD4+, CD8+ T cells, and effector memory CD4+ T cells. Characteristics of ST survival included focal copy number gain of CCNE1, lack of BRCA mutation signature, low homologous recombination deficiency scores, and the presence of ESR1-CCDC170 gene fusion.
Conclusions: Our findings suggest that exceptional long- or short-term survival is determined by a concert of clinical, molecular, and microenvironment factors.