Gene Summary

Gene:BAP1; BRCA1 associated protein 1
Aliases: UCHL2, hucep-6, HUCEP-13
Summary:This gene belongs to the ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase subfamily of deubiquitinating enzymes that are involved in the removal of ubiquitin from proteins. The encoded enzyme binds to the breast cancer type 1 susceptibility protein (BRCA1) via the RING finger domain of the latter and acts as a tumor suppressor. In addition, the enzyme may be involved in regulation of transcription, regulation of cell cycle and growth, response to DNA damage and chromatin dynamics. Germline mutations in this gene may be associated with tumor predisposition syndrome (TPDS), which involves increased risk of cancers including malignant mesothelioma, uveal melanoma and cutaneous melanoma. [provided by RefSeq, May 2013]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:ubiquitin carboxyl-terminal hydrolase BAP1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 09 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 09 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

Tag cloud generated 09 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (8)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: BAP1 (cancer-related)

Calvo E, Schmidinger M, Heng DY, et al.
Improvement in survival end points of patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma through sequential targeted therapy.
Cancer Treat Rev. 2016; 50:109-117 [PubMed] Related Publications
Survival of patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC) has improved since the advent of targeted therapy. Approved agents include the multi-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) sunitinib, sorafenib, axitinib, pazopanib, cabozantinib, and lenvatinib (approved in combination with everolimus), the anti-VEGF monoclonal antibody bevacizumab, the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitors everolimus and temsirolimus, and the programmed death-1 (PD-1) targeted immune checkpoint inhibitor nivolumab. The identification of predictive and prognostic factors of survival is increasing, and both clinical predictive factors and pathology-related prognostic factors are being evaluated. Serum-based biomarkers and certain histologic subtypes of RCC, as well as clinical factors such as dose intensity and the development of some class effect adverse events, have been identified as predictors of survival. Expression levels of microRNAs, expression of chemokine receptor 4, hypermethylation of certain genes, VEGF polymorphisms, and elevation of plasma fibrinogen or d-dimer have been shown to be prognostic indicators of survival. In the future, prognosis and treatment of patients with mRCC might be based on genomic classification, especially of the 4 most commonly mutated genes in RCC (VHL, PBRM1, BAP1, and SETD2). Median overall survival has improved for patients treated with a first-line targeted agent compared with survival of patients treated with first-line interferon-α, and results of clinical trials have shown a survival benefit of sequential treatment with targeted agents. Prognosis of patients with mRCC will likely improve with optimization and individualization of current sequential treatment with targeted agents.

Zhang X, Zhang Y
Bladder Cancer and Genetic Mutations.
Cell Biochem Biophys. 2015; 73(1):65-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
The most common type of urinary bladder cancer is called as transitional cell carcinoma. The major risk factors for bladder cancer are environmental, tobacco smoking, exposure to toxic industrial chemicals and gases, bladder inflammation due to microbial and parasitic infections, as well as some adverse side-effects of medications. The genetic mutations in some chromosomal genes, such as FGFR3, RB1, HRAS, TP53, TSC1, and others, occur which form tumors in the urinary bladder. These genes play an important role in the regulation of cell division which prevents cells from dividing too quickly. The changes in the genes of human chromosome 9 are usually responsible for tumor in bladder cancer, but the genetic mutation of chromosome 22 can also result in bladder cancer. The identification of p53 gene mutation has been studied at NIH, Washington, DC, USA, in urine samples of bladder cancer patients. The invasive bladder cancers were determined for the presence of gene mutations on p53 suppressor gene. The 18 different bladder tumors were evaluated, and 11 (61 %) had genetic mutations of p53 gene. The bladder cancer studies have suggested that 70 % of bladder cancers involve a specific mutation in a particular gene, namely telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) gene. The TERT gene is involved in DNA protection, cellular aging processes, and cancer. The Urothelial carcinomas of the bladder have been described in Atlas of genetics and cytogenetics in oncology and hematology. HRAS is a proto-oncogene and has potential to cause cancer in several organs including the bladder. The TSC1 c. 1907 1908 del (E636fs) mutation in bladder cancer suggests that the location of the mutation is Exon 15 with frequency of TSC1 mutation of 11.7 %. The recent findings of BAP1 mutations have shown that it contributes to BRCA pathway alterations in bladder cancer. The discoveries of more gene mutations and new biomarkers and polymerase chain reaction bioassays for gene mutations in bladder cancer need further research.

Wang A, Papneja A, Hyrcza M, et al.
Gene of the month: BAP1.
J Clin Pathol. 2016; 69(9):750-3 [PubMed] Related Publications
The BAP1 gene (BRCA1-associated protein 1) is a tumour suppressor gene that encodes a deubiquitinating enzyme (DUB), regulating key cellular pathways, including cell cycle, cellular differentiation, transcription and DNA damage response. Germline BAP1 mutations cause a novel cancer syndrome characterised by early onset of multiple atypical Spitz tumours and increased risk of uveal and cutaneous melanoma, mesothelioma, renal cell carcinoma and various other malignancies. Recognising the clinicopathological features of specific BAP1-deficient tumours is crucial for early screening/tumour detection, with significant impact on patient outcome.

Lan TT, Keller-Ramey J, Fitzpatrick C, et al.
Unclassified renal cell carcinoma with tubulopapillary architecture, clear cell phenotype, and chromosome 8 monosomy: a new kid on the block.
Virchows Arch. 2016; 469(1):81-91 [PubMed] Related Publications
Accurate subtyping of renal cell carcinomas (RCCs) has become clinically important for therapy and prognostication. RCC subtypes are defined by distinct morphologic and immunohistochemical profiles, and in some instances recurrent cytogenetic and molecular properties. However, some tumors exhibit overlapping morphologic and immunophenotypic features, frequent enough to pose diagnostic dilemmas. This report concerns six histologically unusual RCCs that showed tubulopapillary architecture, clear cell phenotype, and non-diagnostic immunohistochemical profiles. Further investigation of these tumors utilized a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) microarray platform (OncoScan®, Affymetrix) that employed molecular inversion probe (MIP) technology to investigate genome-wide chromosomal copy number changes and loss of heterozygosity in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded sections. The six tumors were assayed in parallel with and in comparison to RCC with typical morphologic or immunohistochemical features for a specific subtype (clear cell, clear cell papillary, and microphthalmia transcription factor (MiT) family translocation RCC). Three of the unusual RCCs showed a molecular signature of clear cell RCC and one of papillary RCC. The remaining two showed monosomy of chromosome 8. Those two cases were tested via next-generation sequencing, and no pathogenic variants were detected, including those in the genes VHL, PBRM1, SETD2, KDM5C, or BAP1. The addition of molecular investigations such as reported here as applied to histologically and immunohistochemically unusual RCC may help to define additional subtypes and contribute to the development of targeted therapy for renal cancer.

Ugurluer G, Chang K, Gamez ME, et al.
Genome-based Mutational Analysis by Next Generation Sequencing in Patients with Malignant Pleural and Peritoneal Mesothelioma.
Anticancer Res. 2016; 36(5):2331-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIM: Malignant mesothelioma is a rare malignancy with limited therapeutic options. Exome-based next-generation sequencing (NGS) techniques may direct the future of molecular targeting and improve systemic therapies for patients with mesothelioma.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Eleven patients with NGS testing were selected, with a total of 236 somatic cancer-related mutations analyzed. Descriptive and Kaplan-Meier statistics were applied.
RESULTS: The median age was 65 years (range=27-73 years); 4 (36%) patients were females. Seven (64%) and four patients (36%) had pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma, respectively. Detectable mutations were found in 86% of the pleural and 50% of the peritoneal mesothelioma patients (overall, 73% of patients). The families of BAP1 (36%), CDKNA2A/B (27%) and NF2 (27%) represented the most frequently mutated genes. The median overall survival for all patients was 20.8 months, with 1- and 2-year survival rates of 91% and 40%, respectively.
CONCLUSION: Genomic alterations as potential therapeutic targets were found by NGS. These findings will help in the development of new screening tools and targeting therapies, and in turn impact the standard-of-care and potentially lengthen disease control and survival periods in the future.

Yavuzyigitoglu S, Mensink HW, Smit KN, et al.
Metastatic Disease in Polyploid Uveal Melanoma Patients Is Associated With BAP1 Mutations.
Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2016; 57(4):2232-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Most of the uvea melanoma (UM) display a near-diploid (normal, -2N) karyotype with only a few chromosomal changes. In contrast to these simple aberrations 18% of the UM samples show a polyploid character (>2N) and this was associated with an unfavorable prognosis. This study attempts to gain insight in the prognostic value of polyploidy in UM.
METHODS: In 202 patients the ploidy status of the UM was determined using cytogenetic analysis, fluorescence-in-situ-hybridization (FISH), multiplex ligation dependent probe amplification (MLPA), and/or single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array analysis. Immunohistochemistry was used to determine the BAP1 expression and mutation analyses of BAP1 (coding regions) and the mutation hotspots for the SF3B1, EIF1AX, GNAQ, and GNA11 genes was carried out using Sanger sequencing or whole-exome sequencing.
RESULTS: Twenty-three patients had a polyploid UM karyotype (11.4%). Patients with a polyploid tumor had larger tumors (15.61 vs. 13.13 mm, P = 0.004), and more often loss of heterozygosity of chromosome 3 (P = 0.003). No difference in occurrence of mutations between polyploid and diploid tumors was observed for BAP1, SF3B1, EIF1AX, GNAQ, and GNA11. Polyploidy did not affect survival (P = 0.143). BAP1 deficiency was the only significant independent prognostic predictor for patients with polyploid tumors, with a 16-fold increased hazard ratio (HR 15.90, P = 0.009).
CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of mutations in the UM related genes is not different in polyploid UM compared with diploid UM. Moreover, similar to patients with diploid UM, BAP1 mutation is the most significant prognostic predictor of metastasis in patients with polyploid UM.

Jaouen A, Thivolet-Bejui F, Chalabreysse L, et al.
[BRCA1 associated protein 1 (BAP1) expression in pleural diffuse malignant mesothelioma: A comparative cytological and histological analyses on 50 patients].
Ann Pathol. 2016; 36(2):111-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Diffuse malignant mesothelioma (MMD) is a rare disease. The diagnosis is difficult and needs an antibody panel. The tumor suppressor gene BRCA1 associated protein 1 (BAP1) is involved in several cancers, including MMD. Loss of BAP1 expression is correlated with BAP1 somatic or constitutional genetic defects. Our work assesses the value of integrating BAP1 in the panel of antibodies used for the diagnosis of MMD.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Immunohistochemical techniques were performed on cytological and histological specimens of MMD and adenocarcinoma pleural metastasis.
RESULTS: Of the 26 patients with MMD and the 24 patients with adenocarcinoma pleural metastasis, loss of BAP1 expression was observed in 11 (48%) and one adenocarcinoma (6%) on cytological specimens and in 12 MMD (48%) and in one adenocarcinoma (5%) on biopsy specimens. The concordance between immunocytochemistry and immunohistochemistry was 100%. The specificity of BAP1 was 100% on cytological and biopsy specimen for the diagnosis of malignancy in case of mesothelial proliferation.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: Loss of BAP1 expression is an indicator of MMD in a context of mesothelial proliferation. This immunohistochemistry could be integrated in the panel of immunostaining used for MMD diagnosis, either on histological or cytological samples. Furthermore, loss of BAP1 expression guides the patient to an oncology genetic counseling in order to eliminate a MMD developed as part of a constitutional genetic defect.

Field MG, Decatur CL, Kurtenbach S, et al.
PRAME as an Independent Biomarker for Metastasis in Uveal Melanoma.
Clin Cancer Res. 2016; 22(5):1234-42 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
PURPOSE: Uveal melanoma (UM) can be classified by gene expression profiling (GEP) into Class 1 (low metastatic risk) and Class 2 (high metastatic risk), the latter being strongly associated with mutational inactivation of the tumor suppressor BAP1. Nevertheless, a small percentage of Class 1 tumors give rise to metastatic disease. The purpose of this study was to identify biomarkers of metastasis in Class 1 tumors.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: A total of 389 consecutive patients with UM were assigned to Class 1 or Class 2 using a prospectively validated 12-gene prognostic classifier. Selected tumors were further analyzed using global GEP and single nucleotide polymorphism microarrays. PRAME (preferentially expressed antigen in melanoma) mRNA expression was analyzed in 64 Class 1 tumors by qPCR.
RESULTS: Among Class 1 UMs, the most significant predictor of metastasis was PRAME mRNA expression (P = 0.0006). The 5-year actuarial rate of metastasis was 0% for Class1(PRAME-), 38% for Class1(PRAME+), and 71% for Class 2 tumors. Median metastasis-free survival for Class1(PRAME+) patients was 88 months, compared to 32 months for Class 2 patients. Findings were validated using three independent datasets, including one using disomy 3 to identify low-risk UM. Chromosome copy number changes associated with Class1(PRAME+) tumors included gain of 1q, 6p, 8q, and 9q and loss of 6q and 11q. PRAME expression was associated with larger tumor diameter (P = 0.05) and SF3B1 mutations (P = 0.003).
CONCLUSIONS: PRAME is an independent prognostic biomarker in UM, which identifies increased metastatic risk in patients with Class 1 or disomy 3 tumors. This finding may further enhance the accuracy of prognostic testing and precision medicine for UM.

Bueno R, Stawiski EW, Goldstein LD, et al.
Comprehensive genomic analysis of malignant pleural mesothelioma identifies recurrent mutations, gene fusions and splicing alterations.
Nat Genet. 2016; 48(4):407-16 [PubMed] Related Publications
We analyzed transcriptomes (n = 211), whole exomes (n = 99) and targeted exomes (n = 103) from 216 malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) tumors. Using RNA-seq data, we identified four distinct molecular subtypes: sarcomatoid, epithelioid, biphasic-epithelioid (biphasic-E) and biphasic-sarcomatoid (biphasic-S). Through exome analysis, we found BAP1, NF2, TP53, SETD2, DDX3X, ULK2, RYR2, CFAP45, SETDB1 and DDX51 to be significantly mutated (q-score ≥ 0.8) in MPMs. We identified recurrent mutations in several genes, including SF3B1 (∼2%; 4/216) and TRAF7 (∼2%; 5/216). SF3B1-mutant samples showed a splicing profile distinct from that of wild-type tumors. TRAF7 alterations occurred primarily in the WD40 domain and were, except in one case, mutually exclusive with NF2 alterations. We found recurrent gene fusions and splice alterations to be frequent mechanisms for inactivation of NF2, BAP1 and SETD2. Through integrated analyses, we identified alterations in Hippo, mTOR, histone methylation, RNA helicase and p53 signaling pathways in MPMs.

Hwang HC, Pyott S, Rodriguez S, et al.
BAP1 Immunohistochemistry and p16 FISH in the Diagnosis of Sarcomatous and Desmoplastic Mesotheliomas.
Am J Surg Pathol. 2016; 40(5):714-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
The separation of sarcomatous and desmoplastic mesotheliomas from benign organizing pleuritis can be morphologically very difficult. Deletion of p16 (CDKN2A) by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) testing appears to be a reliable marker of malignancy in mesothelial proliferations, and more recently it has been reported that, in this setting, loss of BAP1 by immunohistochemistry is only seen in malignant mesotheliomas. To determine how useful these tests are with sarcomatous and desmoplastic mesotheliomas, we examined 20 such tumors. Loss of BAP1 was seen in 3/20 (15%) and deletion of p16 by FISH was seen in 16/20 (80%) cases. Loss of one or the other marker was observed in 17/20 (85%). We also examined 13 sarcomatoid carcinomas, an important differential diagnosis of sarcomatoid mesotheliomas, and found that BAP1 was never lost, but p16 was deleted in 3/11 (27%). We conclude that: (1) BAP1 immunohistochemistry is relatively insensitive in the context of sarcomatous and desmoplastic mesotheliomas, but as a matter of time and cost efficiency may nonetheless be a useful first approach to the problem; (2) deletion of p16 by FISH is considerably more sensitive, but there remain a proportion of cases in which p16 is not deleted; (3) a small improvement in sensitivity can be achieved by using both markers; (4) in the context of a spindle cell malignant tumor in the pleura or peritoneum, which morphologically might be a metastatic sarcomatoid carcinoma or a mesothelioma, the finding of BAP1 loss favors mesothelioma, but p16 FISH cannot be used to separate sarcomatous mesotheliomas from sarcomatoid carcinomas.

Soura E, Eliades PJ, Shannon K, et al.
Hereditary melanoma: Update on syndromes and management: Emerging melanoma cancer complexes and genetic counseling.
J Am Acad Dermatol. 2016; 74(3):411-20; quiz 421-2 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Recent advances in cancer genomics have enabled the discovery of many cancer-predisposing genes that are being used to classify new familial melanoma/cancer syndromes. In addition to CDKN2A and CDK4, germline variants in TERT, MITF, and BAP1 have been added to the list of genes harboring melanoma-predisposing mutations. These newer entities may have escaped earlier description in part because of more advanced technologies now being used and in part because of their mixed cancer phenotype as opposed to a melanoma-focused syndrome. Dermatologists should be aware of (and be able to recognize) the clinical signs in high-risk patients in different contexts. Personal and family histories of cancer should always be sought in patients with multiple nevi or a positive history for melanoma, and should be updated annually. Various features that are unique to specific disorders, such as the appearance of melanocytic BAP1-mutated atypical intradermal tumors in cases of BAP1 melanoma syndrome, should also be recognized early. These patients should be offered regular screenings with the use of dermoscopy and total body photography, as needed. More importantly, referral to other specialists may be needed if a risk for internal malignancy is suspected. It is important to have in mind that these patients tend to develop multiple melanomas, along with various internal organ malignancies, often at younger ages; a multidisciplinary approach to their cancer screening and treatment is ideal.

Togo Y, Yoshikawa Y, Suzuki T, et al.
Genomic profiling of the genes on chromosome 3p in sporadic clear cell renal cell carcinoma.
Int J Oncol. 2016; 48(4):1571-80 [PubMed] Related Publications
Somatic mutations of the BRCA1 associated protein-1 (BAP1) gene, which maps to 3p21, have been found in several tumors including malignant mesothelioma, uveal melanoma, and renal cell carcinoma (RCC). The role of BAP1 inactivation in tumor development remains unclear. It has been reported that Vhl knock-out mice did not develop RCC, but Vhl knock-out mice with single allele loss of Bap1 in nephron progenitor cells developed RCC, indicating that Bap1 inactivation may be essential in murine renal tumorigenesis. To clarify the role of BAP1 in human RCC development, we performed mutation analyses, including copy number detection of BAP1 and assessment of allelic imbalance using microsatellite polymorphisms on 3p, in 45 RCC samples derived from 45 patients without VHL or BAP1 germline mutation. Additionally, we analyzed the sequences of the VHL, PBRM1, and SETD2 genes, and examined promoter methylation of VHL. Using immunostaining, we also checked for expression of BAP1 protein, which is normally located in the nuclei. None of the RCCs had biallelic deletion of BAP1, but five (11.1%) showed a biallelic mutation (four with a sequence-level mutation with monoallelic loss and one with a biallelic sequence-level mutation); these cells were negative for nuclear BAP1 staining. These patients had worse recurrence-free survival than the patients without a biallelic mutation (p=0.046). However, there were no significant differences in worse outcome by multivariate analysis combined with age, T stage, histological subtype, infiltration and vascular invasion. In 35 RCCs (77.8%), monoallelic loss of BAP1 was accompanied by VHL biallelic mutation or VHL promoter hypermethylation. In five RCCs (11.1%), we detected 3p loss-of-heterozygosity, but the copy number of BAP1 was normal. Surprisingly, nuclear staining of BAP1 was negative in 10 out of 31 tumors (32.3%) with hemizygous normal BAP1, suggesting that haploinsufficiency may relate to RCC development.

Bi M, Zhao S, Said JW, et al.
Genomic characterization of sarcomatoid transformation in clear cell renal cell carcinoma.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2016; 113(8):2170-5 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The presence of sarcomatoid features in clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) confers a poor prognosis and is of unknown pathogenesis. We performed exome sequencing of matched normal-carcinomatous-sarcomatoid specimens from 21 subjects. Two tumors had hypermutation consistent with mismatch repair deficiency. In the remainder, sarcomatoid and carcinomatous elements shared 42% of somatic single-nucleotide variants (SSNVs). Sarcomatoid elements had a higher overall SSNV burden (mean 90 vs. 63 SSNVs, P = 4.0 × 10(-4)), increased frequency of nonsynonymous SSNVs in Pan-Cancer genes (mean 1.4 vs. 0.26, P = 0.002), and increased frequency of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) across the genome (median 913 vs. 460 Mb in LOH, P < 0.05), with significant recurrent LOH on chromosomes 1p, 9, 10, 14, 17p, 18, and 22. The most frequent SSNVs shared by carcinomatous and sarcomatoid elements were in known ccRCC genes including von Hippel-Lindau tumor suppressor (VHL), polybromo 1 (PBRM1), SET domain containing 2 (SETD2), phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN). Most interestingly, sarcomatoid elements acquired biallelic tumor protein p53 (TP53) mutations in 32% of tumors (P = 5.47 × 10(-17)); TP53 mutations were absent in carcinomatous elements in nonhypermutated tumors and rare in previously studied ccRCCs. Mutations in known cancer drivers AT-rich interaction domain 1A (ARID1A) and BRCA1 associated protein 1 (BAP1) were significantly mutated in sarcomatoid elements and were mutually exclusive with TP53 and each other. These findings provide evidence that sarcomatoid elements arise from dedifferentiation of carcinomatous ccRCCs and implicate specific genes in this process. These findings have implications for the treatment of patients with these poor-prognosis cancers.

Lim SM, Park HS, Kim S, et al.
Next-generation sequencing reveals somatic mutations that confer exceptional response to everolimus.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(9):10547-56 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Given the modest responses to everolimus, a mTOR inhibitor, in multiple tumor types, there is a pressing need to identify predictive biomarkers for this drug. Using targeted ultra-deep sequencing, we aimed to explore genomic alterations that confer extreme sensitivity to everolimus.
RESULTS: We collected formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tumor/normal pairs from 39 patients (22 with exceptional clinical benefit, 17 with no clinical benefit) who were treated with everolimus across various tumor types (13 gastric cancers, 15 renal cell carcinomas, 2 thyroid cancers, 2 head and neck cancer, and 7 sarcomas). Ion AmpliSeqTM Comprehensive Cancer Panel was used to identify alterations across all exons of 409 target genes. Tumors were sequenced to a median coverage of 552x. Cancer genomes are characterized by 219 somatic single-nucleotide variants (181 missense, 9 nonsense, 7 splice-site) and 22 frameshift insertions/deletions, with a median of 2.1 mutations per Mb (0 to 12.4 mutations per Mb). Overall, genomic alterations with activating effect on mTOR signaling were identified in 10 of 22 (45%) patients with clinical benefit and these include MTOR, TSC1, TSC2, NF1, PIK3CA and PIK3CG mutations. Recurrently mutated genes in chromatin remodeling genes (BAP1; n = 2, 12%) and receptor tyrosine kinase signaling (FGFR4; n = 2, 12%) were noted only in patients without clinical benefit.
CONCLUSIONS: Regardless of different cancer types, mTOR-pathway-activating mutations confer sensitivity to everolimus. Targeted sequencing of mTOR pathway genes facilitates identification of potential candidates for mTOR inhibitors.

Borczuk AC, Pei J, Taub RN, et al.
Genome-wide analysis of abdominal and pleural malignant mesothelioma with DNA arrays reveals both common and distinct regions of copy number alteration.
Cancer Biol Ther. 2016; 17(3):328-35 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive tumor arising from mesothelial linings of the serosal cavities. Pleural space is the most common site, accounting for about 80% of cases, while peritoneum makes up the majority of the remaining 20%. While histologically similar, tumors from these sites are epidemiologically and clinically distinct and their attribution to asbestos exposure differs. We compared DNA array-based findings from 48 epithelioid peritoneal MMs and 41 epithelioid pleural MMs to identify similarities and differences in copy number alterations (CNAs). Losses in 3p (BAP1 gene), 9p (CDKN2A) and 22q (NF2) were seen in tumors from both tumor sites, although CDKN2A and NF2 losses were seen at a higher rate in pleural disease (p<0.01). Overall, regions of copy number gain were more common in peritoneal MM, whereas losses were more common in pleural MM, with regions of loss containing known tumor suppressor genes and regions of gain encompassing genes encoding receptor tyrosine kinase pathway members. Cases with known asbestos causation (n = 32 ) were compared with those linked to radiation exposure (n = 9 ). Deletions in 6q, 14q, 17p and 22q, and gain of 17q were seen in asbestos-associated but not radiation-related cases. As reported in post-radiation sarcoma, gains outnumbered losses in radiation-associated MM. The patterns of genomic imbalances suggest overlapping and distinct molecular pathways in MM of the pleura and peritoneum, and that differences in causation (i.e., asbestos vs. radiation) may account for some of these site-dependent differences.

Pillai S, Gopalan V, Smith RA, Lam AK
Updates on the genetics and the clinical impacts on phaeochromocytoma and paraganglioma in the new era.
Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2016; 100:190-208 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genetic mutations of phaeochromocytoma (PCC) and paraganglioma (PGL) are mainly classified into two major clusters. Cluster 1 mutations are involved with the pseudo hypoxic pathway and comprised of PHD2, VHL, SDHx, IDH, HIF2A, MDH2 and FH mutated PCC/PGL. Cluster 2 mutations are associated with abnormal activation of kinase signalling pathways and included mutations of RET, NF1, KIF1Bβ, MAX and TMEM127. In addition, VHL, SDHx (cluster 1 genes) and RET, NF1 (cluster 2 genes) germline mutations are involved in the neuronal precursor cell pathway in the pathogeneses of PCC/PGL. Also, GDNF, H-ras, K-ras, GNAS, CDKN2A (p16), p53, BAP1, BRCA1&2, ATRX and KMT2D mutations have roles in the development of PCC/PGLs. Overall, known genetic mutations account for the pathogenesis of approximately 60% of PCC/PGLs. Genetic mutations, pathological parameters and biochemical markers are used for better prediction of the outcome of patients with this group of tumours. Immunohistochemistry and gene sequencing can ensure a more effective detection, prediction of malignant potential and treatment of PCC/PCLs.

Galateau-Salle F, Churg A, Roggli V, et al.
The 2015 World Health Organization Classification of Tumors of the Pleura: Advances since the 2004 Classification.
J Thorac Oncol. 2016; 11(2):142-54 [PubMed] Related Publications
A new World Health Organization (WHO) Classification of Tumors of the Pleura has recently been published. While the histologic classification of pleural malignant mesothelioma remains the same in the 2015 WHO classification as it was in the 2004 classification, multiple new observations have been recorded. First, more detailed study has been performed of histologic subtyping of epithelioid mesothelioma. In particular, it has been recognized that the pleomorphic subtype is associated with a poor prognosis, similar to that of sarcomatoid malignant mesothelioma. Second, there is improved understanding of the role of immunohistochemistry in distinguishing mesothelioma from carcinomas of various sites. Third, the criteria for distinguishing malignant mesothelioma from reactive mesothelial proliferations has been further refined. Fourth, additional studies of sarcomatoid mesothelioma have defined the frequency and spectrum of various histologic and immunohistochemical features, including heterologous elements. Finally, pleural well-differentiated papillary mesotheliomas are better defined and cases with invasive foci are recognized. In addition, several promising observations in mesothelioma pathology and genetics have been made in the past decade. These are now the subject of further investigation to determine if they can be validated in ways that will significantly impact clinical practice. These include a preliminary study of grading, suggesting that nuclear atypia and mitotic count are independent prognostic markers. The discovery of inactivating mutations in the BRCA1-associated protein 1 gene in sporadic and hereditary mesothelioma has opened up a variety of novel molecular, clinical, and diagnostic investigations. One possible diagnostic application includes the setting of separating mesothelioma from reactive mesothelial proliferations, where it may play a role in conjunction with p16 FISH. Another useful discovery was that the NAB2-STAT6 fusion is characteristic of solitary fibrous tumors. This led to development of a STAT6 antibody that is a reliable immunohistochemical marker for solitary fibrous tumors. Genetic studies also led to the finding that WWTR1-CAMTA1 fusions are useful diagnostic markers for epithelioid hemangioendotheliomas, which can present as pleural-based masses. Finally, desmoid type fibromatosis, a locally aggressive tumor that can present in the pleura, has been shown to frequently have CTNNB1 gene mutations and express β-catenin by immunohistochemistry.

McDonnell KJ, Gallanis GT, Heller KA, et al.
A novel BAP1 mutation is associated with melanocytic neoplasms and thyroid cancer.
Cancer Genet. 2016; 209(3):75-81 [PubMed] Related Publications
Germline mutations in the tumor suppressor gene, BRCA-1 associated protein (BAP1), underlie a tumor predisposition syndrome characterized by increased risk for numerous cancers including uveal melanoma, melanocytic tumors and mesothelioma, among others. In the present study we report the identification of a novel germline BAP1 mutation, c.1777C>T, which produces a truncated BAP1 protein product and segregates with cancer. Family members with this mutation demonstrated a primary clinical phenotype of autosomal dominant, early-onset melanocytic neoplasms with immunohistochemistry (IHC) of these tumors demonstrating lack of BAP1 protein expression. In addition, family members harboring the BAP1 c.1777C>T germline mutation developed other neoplastic disease including thyroid cancer. IHC analysis of the thyroid cancer, as well, demonstrated loss of BAP1 protein expression. Our investigation identifies a new BAP1 mutation, further highlights the relevance of BAP1 as a clinically important tumor suppressor gene, and broadens the range of cancers associated with BAP1 inactivation. Further study will be required to understand the full scope of BAP1-associated neoplastic disease.

Küsters-Vandevelde HV, Creytens D, van Engen-van Grunsven AC, et al.
SF3B1 and EIF1AX mutations occur in primary leptomeningeal melanocytic neoplasms; yet another similarity to uveal melanomas.
Acta Neuropathol Commun. 2016; 4:5 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Like uveal melanomas, primary leptomeningeal melanocytic neoplasms (LMNs) frequently carry GNAQ and GNA11 mutations. However, it is currently unknown whether these LMNs harbor mutations in BAP1, SF3B1 and/or EIF1AX like uveal melanomas as well. In this study, we used Sanger sequencing for the detection of mutations in SF3B1 (hotspots in exon 14 and 15) and EIF1AX (exon 1 and 2 and flanking intronic regions) in a series of 24 primary LMNs. Additionally, BAP1 immunohistochemistry was used as a surrogate marker for the detection of inactivating mutations in the BAP1 gene.
RESULTS: Mutations in either SF3B1 or EIF1AX were identified in 8 out of 24 primary LMNs (33 %). The presence of these mutations was mutually exclusive and occurred in primary LMNs of different malignancy grades (melanocytomas, intermediate-grade melanocytic tumors, melanomas). Complete absence of nuclear BAP1 staining as is typically seen in BAP1-mutated tumors was not observed.
CONCLUSIONS: Our finding that an SF3B1 or EIF1AX mutation is present in a substantial subset of primary LMNs underscores that these tumors genetically resemble uveal melanoma and are different from cutaneous melanoma at the genetic level. This information may not only aid in the differential diagnosis of primary versus metastatic melanocytic tumor in/around the central nervous system, but also in the identification of more promising therapeutic approaches targeting the molecular pathways involved in the oncogenesis of LMNs. As none of the primary LMNs in our series showed complete loss of nuclear BAP1 protein, it is unlikely that BAP1 mutations are frequent in these tumors but the role of this gene warrants further investigation.

Andrici J, Goeppert B, Sioson L, et al.
Loss of BAP1 Expression Occurs Frequently in Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2016; 95(2):e2491 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BRCA1-associated protein 1 (BAP1) is a deubiquitinating enzyme that functions as a tumor suppressor gene. Double hit BAP1 inactivation has been reported in a range of tumor types, including intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC), sometimes in association with germline mutation.We performed immunohistochemistry for BAP1 on a well-characterized cohort of 211 ICC patients undergoing surgical resection with curative intent at 3 institutions based in 3 different countries. The median age at diagnosis was 65 years (range, 36.5-86) and 108 (51%) were men. Negative staining for BAP1 (defined as completely absent nuclear staining in the presence of positive internal controls in nonneoplastic cells) occurred in 55 ICCs (26%). BAP1 loss predicted a strong trend toward improved median survival of 40.80 months (95% CI, 28.14-53.46) versus 24.87 months (95% CI, 18.73-31.01), P = 0.059). In a multivariate model including age, sex, BAP1 status, tumor stage, tumor grade, lymphovascular invasion, and tumor size, female sex was associated with improved survival (hazard ratio [HR] 0.54; 95% CI, 0.34-0.85), while advanced tumor stage and lymphovascular invasion (HR 1.89; 95% CI, 1.09-3.28) correlated with decreased survival. In a multivariate analysis, high grade tumors were associated with BAP1 loss (odds ratio [OR] 3.32; 95% CI, 1.29-8.55), while lymphatic invasion was inversely associated with BAP1 loss (OR 0.36; 95% CI, 0.13-0.99).In conclusion, we observed a trend toward improved prognosis in ICC associated with absent expression of BAP1 and an association of BAP1 loss with higher histological grade and absent lymphatic invasion. Female sex was associated with improved survival while advanced tumor stage and lymphatic invasion were associated with decreased survival.

van de Nes J, Gessi M, Sucker A, et al.
Targeted next generation sequencing reveals unique mutation profile of primary melanocytic tumors of the central nervous system.
J Neurooncol. 2016; 127(3):435-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
Melanocytic tumors originating in the central nervous system (MT-CNS) are rare tumors that generally have a favorable prognosis, however malignant tumors do occur. Pathogenetically MT-CNS are not well characterized. Similar to uveal melanoma and blue nevi, they frequently harbor activating GNAQ or GNA11 mutations. Rare NRAS mutations have also been reported. Other mutations have not yet been described. We analyzed 19 MT-CNS, 7 uveal melanomas and 19 cutaneous melanomas using a targeted next generation sequencing approach analyzing 29 genes known to be frequently mutated in other melanocytic tumors (in particular uveal and cutaneous melanomas). In concordance with previous studies, cutaneous melanoma samples showed frequent NRAS or BRAF mutations, as well as mutations in other genes (e.g. NF1, RAC1, PIK3CA, ARID1A). Metastasized uveal melanomas exhibited mutations in GNAQ, GNA11 and BAP1. In contrast, MT-CNS almost exclusively demonstrated mutations in GNAQ (71 %) or GNA11 (12 %). Interestingly both GNA11 mutations identified were detected in MT-CNS diagnosed as intermediate grade melanocytomas which also recurred. One of these recurrent cases also harbored an inactivating BAP1 mutation and was found to have lost one copy of chromosome 3. Our findings show that while MT-CNS do have GNAQ or GNA11 mutations, they rarely harbor other recurrent mutations found in uveal or cutaneous melanomas. Considering chromosome 3 and BAP1 loss are robust markers of poor prognosis in uveal melanoma, it will prove interesting to determine whether these genomic alterations are also of prognostic significance in MT-CNS.

Harms PW, Collie AM, Hovelson DH, et al.
Next generation sequencing of Cytokeratin 20-negative Merkel cell carcinoma reveals ultraviolet-signature mutations and recurrent TP53 and RB1 inactivation.
Mod Pathol. 2016; 29(3):240-8 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Merkel cell carcinoma is a rare but highly aggressive cutaneous neuroendocrine carcinoma. Cytokeratin 20 (CK20) is expressed in ~95% of Merkel cell carcinomas and is useful for distinction from morphologically similar entities including metastatic small-cell lung carcinoma. Lack of CK20 expression may make diagnosis of Merkel cell carcinoma more challenging, and has unknown biological significance. Approximately 80% of CK20-positive Merkel cell carcinomas are associated with the oncogenic Merkel cell polyomavirus. Merkel cell carcinomas lacking Merkel cell polyomavirus display distinct genetic changes from Merkel cell polyomavirus-positive Merkel cell carcinoma, including RB1 inactivating mutations. Unlike CK20-positive Merkel cell carcinoma, the majority of CK20-negative Merkel cell carcinomas are Merkel cell polyomavirus-negative, suggesting CK20-negative Merkel cell carcinomas predominantly arise through virus-independent pathway(s) and may harbor additional genetic differences from conventional Merkel cell carcinoma. Hence, we analyzed 15 CK20-negative Merkel cell carcinoma tumors (10 Merkel cell polyomavirus-negative, four Merkel cell polyomavirus-positive, and one undetermined) using the Ion Ampliseq Comprehensive Cancer Panel, which assesses copy number alterations and mutations in 409 cancer-relevant genes. Twelve tumors displayed prioritized high-level chromosomal gains or losses (average 1.9 per tumor). Non-synonymous high-confidence somatic mutations were detected in 14 tumors (average 11.9 per tumor). Assessing all somatic coding mutations, an ultraviolet-signature mutational profile was present, and more prevalent in Merkel cell polyomavirus-negative tumors. Recurrent deleterious tumor suppressor mutations affected TP53 (9/15, 60%), RB1 (3/15, 20%), and BAP1 (2/15, 13%). Oncogenic activating mutations included PIK3CA (3/15, 20%), AKT1 (1/15, 7%) and EZH2 (1/15, 7%). In conclusion, CK20-negative Merkel cell carcinoma display overlapping genetic changes with CK20-positive Merkel cell carcinoma, including RB1 mutations restricted to Merkel cell polyomavirus-negative tumors. However, some CK20-negative Merkel cell carcinomas harbor mutations not previously described in Merkel cell carcinoma. Hence, CK20-negative Merkel cell carcinomas harbor diverse oncogenic drivers which may represent therapeutic targets in individual tumors.

Ohar JA, Cheung M, Talarchek J, et al.
Germline BAP1 Mutational Landscape of Asbestos-Exposed Malignant Mesothelioma Patients with Family History of Cancer.
Cancer Res. 2016; 76(2):206-15 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Heritable mutations in the BAP1 tumor suppressor gene predispose individuals to mesothelioma and other cancers. However, a large-scale assessment of germline BAP1 mutation incidence and associated clinical features in mesothelioma patients with a family history of cancer has not been reported. Therefore, we examined the germline BAP1 mutation status of 150 mesothelioma patients with a family history of cancer, 50 asbestos-exposed control individuals with a family history of cancers other than mesothelioma, and 153 asbestos-exposed individuals without familial cancer. No BAP1 alterations were found in control cohorts, but were identified in nine of 150 mesothelioma cases (6%) with a family history of cancer. Alterations among these cases were characterized by both missense and frameshift mutations, and enzymatic activity of BAP1 missense mutants was decreased compared with wild-type BAP1. Furthermore, BAP1 mutation carriers developed mesothelioma at an earlier age that was more often peritoneal than pleural (five of nine) and exhibited improved long-term survival compared to mesothelioma patients without BAP1 mutations. Moreover, many tumors harboring BAP1 germline mutations were associated with BAP1 syndrome, including mesothelioma and ocular/cutaneous melanomas, as well as renal, breast, lung, gastric, and basal cell carcinomas. Collectively, these findings suggest that mesothelioma patients presenting with a family history of cancer should be considered for BAP1 genetic testing to identify those individuals who might benefit from further screening and routine monitoring for the purpose of early detection and intervention.

Bernards SS, Norquist BM, Harrell MI, et al.
Genetic characterization of early onset ovarian carcinoma.
Gynecol Oncol. 2016; 140(2):221-5 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Ovarian carcinoma (OC) is rare in young women and the fraction of early onset OC attributable to inherited mutations in known OC genes is uncertain. We sought to characterize the fraction of OC that is heritable in women diagnosed with ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal carcinoma at forty years of age or younger.
METHODS: We sequenced germline DNA from forty-seven women diagnosed with OC at age 40 or younger ascertained through a gynecologic oncology tissue bank or referred from outside providers using BROCA, a targeted capture and massively parallel sequencing platform that can detect all mutation classes. We evaluated 11 genes associated with ovarian carcinoma (BARD1, BRCA1, BRCA2, BRIP1, MLH1, MSH2, MSH6, PALB2, PMS2, RAD51D, and RAD51C) and additional candidate genes in DNA repair (ATM, BAP1, CHEK2, MRE11A, NBN, PTEN, TP53). We counted only clearly damaging mutations.
RESULTS: Damaging mutations in OC genes were identified in 13 of 47 (28%) subjects, of which 10 (77%) occurred in BRCA1 and one each occurred in BRCA2, MSH2, and RAD51D. Women with a strong family history were no more likely to have an OC gene mutation (8/17, 47%) than those without a strong family history (9/30, 30%, P=0.35). Additionally, damaging mutations in non-OC genes were identified, one in NBN and one in CHEK2.
CONCLUSIONS: A high proportion of young women with invasive OC have mutations in BRCA1, and a smaller fraction have mutations in other known OC genes. Family history was not associated with mutation status in these early onset cases.

Ruzzenente A, Fassan M, Conci S, et al.
Cholangiocarcinoma Heterogeneity Revealed by Multigene Mutational Profiling: Clinical and Prognostic Relevance in Surgically Resected Patients.
Ann Surg Oncol. 2016; 23(5):1699-707 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Cholangiocarcinoma can be classified in intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) and perihilar cholangiocarcinoma (PCC). Moreover, PCC includes two different forms: extrahepatic (EH) PCC, which arises from the perihilar EH large ducts, and intrahepatic (IH) PCC, in which a significant liver mass invades the perihilar bile ducts. In this study, we investigated the molecular profile and molecular prognostic factors in EH-PCC, IH-PCC, and ICC submitted to curative surgery.
METHODS: Ninety-one patients with cholangiocarcinoma (38 EH-PCC, 18 IH-PCC, and 35 ICC), who underwent curative surgery in a single tertiary hepatobiliary surgery referral center were assessed for mutational status in 56 cancer-related genes.
RESULTS: The most frequently mutated genes in EH-PCC were KRAS (47.4 %), TP53 (23.7 %) and ARID1A (15.8 %); in IH-PCC were KRAS (22.2 %), PBRM1 (16.7 %), and PIK3CA (16.7 %); and in ICC were IDH1 (17.1 %), NRAS (17.1 %), and BAP1 (14.3 %). The presence of mutations in ALK, IDH1, and TP53 genes was significantly associated with poor prognosis in patients with EH-PCC (p < 0.001, p = 0.043, and p = 0.019, respectively). Mutation of the TP53 gene was significantly associated with poor prognosis in patients with IH-PCC (p = 0.049). The presence of mutations in ARID1A, PIK3C2G, STK11, TGFBR2, and TP53 genes was significantly associated with poor prognosis in patients with ICC (p = 0.012, p = 0.030, p = 0.030, p = 0.011, and p = 0.011, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS: Mutational gene profiling identified different gene mutations in EH-PCC, IH-PCC, and ICC. Moreover, our study reported specific prognostic genes that can identify patients with poor prognosis after curative surgery who may benefit from traditional or target adjuvant treatments.

Vivancos A, Caratú G, Matito J, et al.
Genetic evolution of nevus of Ota reveals clonal heterogeneity acquiring BAP1 and TP53 mutations.
Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. 2016; 29(2):247-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
Melanoma presents molecular alterations based on its anatomical location and exposure to environmental factors. Due to its intrinsic genetic heterogeneity, a simple snapshot of a tumor's genetic alterations does not reflect the tumor clonal complexity or specific gene-gene cooperation. Here, we studied the genetic alterations and clonal evolution of a unique patient with a Nevus of Ota that developed into a recurring uveal-like dermal melanoma. The Nevus of Ota and ulterior lesions contained GNAQ mutations were c-KIT positive, and tumors showed an increased RAS pathway activity during progression. Whole-exome sequencing of these lesions revealed the acquisition of BAP1 and TP53 mutations during tumor evolution, thereby unmasking clonal heterogeneity and allowing the identification of cooperating genes within the same tumor. Our results highlight the importance of studying tumor genetic evolution to identify cooperating mechanisms and delineate effective therapies.

Macháčková E, Hazova J, Sťahlová Hrabincová E, et al.
[Retrospective NGS Study in High-risk Hereditary Cancer Patients at Masaryk Memorial Cancer Institute].
Klin Onkol. 2016; 29 Suppl 1:S35-45 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Currently, more than 200 hereditary cancer syndromes have been described, yet, in most countries genetic testing is restricted to a narrow spectrum of genes within a limited group of people tested.
METHODS: For this retrospective study we used the TruSight cancer panel (Illumina)--NGS panel targeting 94 cancer predisposition genes in order to analyze 50 high-risk cancer patients with significant personal and family history of cancer who did not carry mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2, MLH1, MSH2, MSH6, TP53 or APC genes. All pathogenic and potentially pathogenic mutations detected by NGS technology have been confirmed by Sanger sequencing.
RESULTS: There were several deleterious (frame-shift/nonsense) mutations detected in ATM, BAP1, FANCC, FANCI, PMS2, SBDS, ERCC2, RECQL4 genes. Various pathogenic or potentially pathogenic (missense, predicted splice site, in-frame insertion/deletion) mutations were detected in ATM, BRIP1, CDH1, CHEK2, ERCC2, ERCC3, ERCC4, FANCA, MC1R, MEN1, MRE11A, MUTYH, PALB2, RAD51C, RET, SDHB, STK11. These mutations affect highly conserved protein domains and affect their function as proved by the available functional assays. They were confirmed to be pathogenic as an "Parent No2 " in serious recessive diseases such as Ataxia telangiectasia or Fanconi anemia. The clinical significance of the majority of detected missense variants still remains to be identified.
CONCLUSION: Moderate or low penetrance variants are of limited clinical importance. Panel genetic testing in high-risk individuals with cancer provides important information concerning the cause of the investigated cancer, and may assist in the risk assesment and optimal management of the cancer, as well as in further preventive care.

Lu C, Xie M, Wendl MC, et al.
Patterns and functional implications of rare germline variants across 12 cancer types.
Nat Commun. 2015; 6:10086 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Large-scale cancer sequencing data enable discovery of rare germline cancer susceptibility variants. Here we systematically analyse 4,034 cases from The Cancer Genome Atlas cancer cases representing 12 cancer types. We find that the frequency of rare germline truncations in 114 cancer-susceptibility-associated genes varies widely, from 4% (acute myeloid leukaemia (AML)) to 19% (ovarian cancer), with a notably high frequency of 11% in stomach cancer. Burden testing identifies 13 cancer genes with significant enrichment of rare truncations, some associated with specific cancers (for example, RAD51C, PALB2 and MSH6 in AML, stomach and endometrial cancers, respectively). Significant, tumour-specific loss of heterozygosity occurs in nine genes (ATM, BAP1, BRCA1/2, BRIP1, FANCM, PALB2 and RAD51C/D). Moreover, our homology-directed repair assay of 68 BRCA1 rare missense variants supports the utility of allelic enrichment analysis for characterizing variants of unknown significance. The scale of this analysis and the somatic-germline integration enable the detection of rare variants that may affect individual susceptibility to tumour development, a critical step toward precision medicine.

Johansson P, Aoude LG, Wadt K, et al.
Deep sequencing of uveal melanoma identifies a recurrent mutation in PLCB4.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(4):4624-31 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Next generation sequencing of uveal melanoma (UM) samples has identified a number of recurrent oncogenic or loss-of-function mutations in key driver genes including: GNAQ, GNA11, EIF1AX, SF3B1 and BAP1. To search for additional driver mutations in this tumor type we carried out whole-genome or whole-exome sequencing of 28 tumors or primary cell lines. These samples have a low mutation burden, with a mean of 10.6 protein changing mutations per sample (range 0 to 53). As expected for these sun-shielded melanomas the mutation spectrum was not consistent with an ultraviolet radiation signature, instead, a BRCA mutation signature predominated. In addition to mutations in the known UM driver genes, we found a recurrent mutation in PLCB4 (c.G1888T, p.D630Y, NM_000933), which was validated using Sanger sequencing. The identical mutation was also found in published UM sequence data (1 of 56 tumors), supporting its role as a novel driver mutation in UM. PLCB4 p.D630Y mutations are mutually exclusive with mutations in GNA11 and GNAQ, consistent with PLCB4 being the canonical downstream target of the former gene products. Taken together these data suggest that the PLCB4 hotspot mutation is similarly a gain-of-function mutation leading to activation of the same signaling pathway, promoting UM tumorigenesis.

Costa S, Byrne M, Pissaloux D, et al.
Melanomas Associated With Blue Nevi or Mimicking Cellular Blue Nevi: Clinical, Pathologic, and Molecular Study of 11 Cases Displaying a High Frequency of GNA11 Mutations, BAP1 Expression Loss, and a Predilection for the Scalp.
Am J Surg Pathol. 2016; 40(3):368-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
Melanomas associated with blue nevi (MABN) or mimicking cellular blue nevi (MMCBN) represent exceptional variants of malignant cutaneous melanocytic tumors. Uveal and leptomeningeal melanomas frequently have somatic mutations of GNAQ or GNA11, which are believed to be early driver mutations. In uveal melanomas, monosomy 3, linked to the BAP1 gene, is an adverse prognostic factor. We have studied the clinical, histologic, BAP1 expression profile, and molecular data of 11 cases of MABN/MMCBN and 24 cellular blue nevi. Most of the cases of MABN/MMCBN occurred on the scalps of adult patients and presented as rapidly growing nodules, typically >1 cm, often arising at the site of a preexisting melanocytic lesion. The MABN/MMCBN were composed of dense nests of large dermal atypical melanocytes, in some cases lying adjacent to a blue nevus. Four patients developed metastatic disease, and 2 died from their disease. A GNA11 mutation was found in 8/11 cases and a GNAQ mutation in 1 case. Seven of 11 cases showed loss of nuclear BAP1 immunohistochemical (IHC) expression in the malignant component, sparing the adjacent nevus. Array comparative genomic hybridization revealed recurrent deletions of chromosomes 1p, 3p, 4q, 6q, 8p, 16q, and 17q and recurrent gains of chromosomes 6p, 8q, and 21q. The 24 cases of cellular blue nevi frequently occurred on the sacrum, had GNAQ mutations, and showed normal positive IHC staining for BAP1. These results underscore overlapping features in all blue-like malignant melanocytic tumors. Loss of BAP1 IHC expression was restricted to melanomas, including all metastatic cases.

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