Gene Summary

Gene:KIF5B; kinesin family member 5B
Aliases: KNS, KINH, KNS1, UKHC, HEL-S-61
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:kinesin-1 heavy chain
Source:NCBIAccessed: 31 August, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 31 August 2019 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 31 August, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

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: KIF5B (cancer-related)

Wang Y, Xu Y, Wang X, et al.
RET fusion in advanced non-small-cell lung cancer and response to cabozantinib: A case report.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2019; 98(3):e14120 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
RATIONALE: Lung cancer is a series of gene-driven disease. EGFR, ALK, and ROS1 are 3 major driver genes that play an important role in lung cancer development and precision management. Additionally, rare genetic alterations continue to be discovered and may become novel targets for therapy. The RET gene is one of such rare genetic alteration of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In this report, we present a RET-positive case that benefited from cabozantinib treatment.
PATIENT CONCERN: A 50-year-old male patient was diagnosed with lung adenocarcinoma 2 years ago, at that time he received palliative surgery of pulmonary carcinoma and completed 4 cycles of chemotherapy with gemcitabine and cisplatin. Six months later, he was hospitalized in our cancer center due to the disease recurrence, presenting with pleural metastasis.
DIAGNOSIS: Gene alteration was examined using the intraoperative specimen by PCR method, and KIF5B/RET gene fusion was detected. Therefore, the patient was diagnosed with late-stage lung adenocarcinoma with RET gene mutation.
INTERVENTIONS: The patient received treatment with cabozantinib from June 2017.
OUTCOMES: Cabozantinib was administered (140 mg orally, once daily) for approximate 9 months, and his disease achieved stable disease (SD). During that period, there were no severe adverse events (AE), except for a grade II rash (CTCAE 4.0).
LESSONS: We found that the RET fusion gene is a novel driver molecular of lung adenocarcinoma in patients without common mutations in such genes as EGFR, ALK, and ROS1. This case report supports a rationale for the treatment of lung adenocarcinoma patients with a RET fusion and provides alternative treatment options for these types of NSCLC patients.

Shimizu N, Akashi Y, Fujii T, et al.
Use of ALK Immunohistochemistry for Optimal Therapeutic Strategy of Pulmonary Large-cell Neuroendocrine Carcinoma and Identification of a Novel
Anticancer Res. 2019; 39(1):413-420 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Patients with adenocarcinoma of the lung are routinely screened for anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) rearrangement because they can be treated by ALK-specific targeted therapy. The clinical and molecular characteristics of large-cell neuroendocrine carcinoma (LCNEC) associated with ALK rearrangement are still unclear. Herein, we assessed the ALK status in a series of patients with LCNEC by testing methods commonly used for adenocarcinoma.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: ALK expression was first examined by immunohistochemistry. For a positively stained tumor, molecular analyses were then conducted. The ALK fusion partner found in a patient with ALK rearrangement was further identified by direct DNA sequencing. Patient clinicopathological features were also analyzed, focusing on the ALK rearrangement-positive case.
RESULTS: Immunohistochemistry of seven patients identified strong ALK expression in one case of stage IV LCNEC. Molecular analysis identified a novel rearranged gene resulting from the fusion of kinesin family member 5B (KIF5B) exon 17 to ALK exon 20. The patient was treated with ALK-specific inhibitors, crizotinib and later, alectinib, and has remained alive for more than 24 months without disease progression. Three of the remaining six patients without ALK rearrangement had stage IV cancer and received cytotoxic chemotherapies. Their average overall survival was 5.4 months.
CONCLUSION: To our knowledge, this is the first report of a KIF5B-ALK fusion gene in LCNEC. The patient was successfully treated with ALK inhibitors, suggesting that sensitivity to ALK inhibitor may define a specific LCNEC subtype. We propose that screening for ALK rearrangement in patients with LCNEC may assist in selecting potential candidates for targeted therapy.

Zhang K, Chen H, Wang Y, et al.
Clinical Characteristics and Molecular Patterns of
Oncol Res. 2019; 27(5):575-582 [PubMed] Related Publications

Gow CH, Liu YN, Li HY, et al.
Oncogenic Function of a KIF5B-MET Fusion Variant in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.
Neoplasia. 2018; 20(8):838-847 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
A kinesin family member 5b (KIF5B)-MET proto-oncogene, receptor tyrosine kinase (MET) rearrangement was reported in patients with lung adenocarcinoma but its oncogenic function was not fully evaluated. We used one-step reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction for RNA samples to screen for the KIF5B-MET fusion in 206 lung adenocarcinoma and 28 pulmonary sarcomatoid carcinoma patients. Genomic breakpoints of KIF5B-MET were determined by targeted next-generation sequencing. Soft agar colony formation assays, proliferation assays, and a xenograft mouse model were used to investigate its oncogenic activity. In addition, specific MET inhibitors were administered to evaluate their anti-tumor activities. A KIF5B-MET fusion variant in a patient with a mixed-type adenocarcinoma and sarcomatoid tumor was identified, and another case was found in a pulmonary sarcomatoid carcinoma patient. Both cases carried the same chimeric gene, a fusion between exons 1-24 of KIF5B and exons 15-21 of MET. KIF5B-MET-overexpressing cells exhibited significantly increased proliferation and colony-forming ability. Xenograft tumors harboring the fusion gene demonstrated significantly elevated tumor growth. Ectopic expression of the fusion gene stimulated the phosphorylation of KIF5B-MET as well as downstream STAT3, AKT, and ERK1/2 signaling pathways. The MET inhibitors significantly repressed cell proliferation; phosphorylation of downstream STAT3, AKT, and ERK1/2; and xenograft tumorigenicity. In conclusion, the KIF5B-MET variant was demonstrated to have an oncogenic function in cancer cells. These findings have immediate clinical implications for the targeted therapy of subgroups of non-small cell lung cancer patients.

Li J, Fu X, Cao S, et al.
Membrane-associated androgen receptor (AR) potentiates its transcriptional activities by activating heat shock protein 27 (HSP27).
J Biol Chem. 2018; 293(33):12719-12729 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The androgen receptor (AR) is a ligand-activated nuclear receptor that plays a critical role in normal prostate physiology, as well as in the development and progression of prostate cancer. In addition to the classical paradigm in which AR exerts its biological effects in the nucleus by orchestrating the expression of the androgen-regulated transcriptome, there is considerable evidence supporting a rapid, nongenomic activity mediated by membrane-associated AR. Although the genomic action of AR has been studied in depth, the molecular events governing AR transport to the plasma membrane and the downstream AR signaling cascades remain poorly understood. In this study, we report that AR membrane transport is microtubule-dependent. Disruption of the function of kinesin 5B (KIF5B), but not of kinesin C3 (KIFC3), interfered with AR membrane association and signaling. Co-immunoprecipitation and pulldown assays revealed that AR physically interacts with KIF5B and that androgen enhances this interaction. Furthermore, we show that heat shock protein 27 (HSP27) is activated by membrane-associated AR and that HSP27 plays an important role in mediating AR-mediated membrane-to-nuclear signal transduction. Together, these results indicate that AR membrane translocation is mediated by the microtubule cytoskeleton and the motor protein KIF5B. By activating HSP27, membrane-associated AR potentiates the transcriptional activity of nuclear AR. We conclude that disruption of AR membrane translocation may represent a potential strategy for targeting AR signaling therapeutically in prostate cancer.

Saiki M, Kitazono S, Yoshizawa T, et al.
Characterization of Computed Tomography Imaging of Rearranged During Transfection-rearranged Lung Cancer.
Clin Lung Cancer. 2018; 19(5):435-440.e1 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Rearranged during transfection (RET)-rearranged non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is relatively rare and the clinical and computed tomography (CT) image characteristics of patients with an advanced disease stage have not been well documented.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: We identified patients with advanced-stage RET-rearranged NSCLC treated in the Cancer Institute Hospital, Japanese Foundation for Cancer Research, and analyzed the clinical and CT imaging characteristics.
RESULTS: In 21 patients with advanced RET-rearranged NSCLC, RET rearrangements were identified using fluorescence in situ hybridization and/or reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. The fusion partner genes were identified as KIF5B (57%), CCDC6 (19%), and unknown (24%). CT imaging showed that 12 primary lesions (92%) were peripherally located and all were solid tumors without ground-glass, air bronchograms, or cavitation. The median size of the primary lesions was 30 mm (range, 12-63 mm). Of the 18 patients with CT images before initial chemotherapy, 12 (67%) showed an absence of lymphadenopathy. Distant metastasis included 13 with pleural dissemination (72%), 10 with lung metastasis (56%), 8 with bone metastasis (44%), and 2 with brain metastasis (11%).
CONCLUSION: Advanced RET-rearranged NSCLC manifested as a relatively small and peripherally located solid primary lesion with or without small solitary lymphadenopathy. Pleural dissemination was frequently observed.

Velizheva NP, Rechsteiner MP, Valtcheva N, et al.
Targeted next-generation-sequencing for reliable detection of targetable rearrangements in lung adenocarcinoma-a single center retrospective study.
Pathol Res Pract. 2018; 214(4):572-578 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Oncogenic rearrangements leading to targetable gene fusions are well-established cancer driver events in lung adenocarcinoma. Accurate and reliable detection of these gene fusions is crucial to select the appropriate targeted therapy for each patient. We compared the targeted next-generation-sequencing Oncomine Focus Assay (OFA; Thermo Fisher Scientific) with conventional ALK FISH and anti-Alk immunohistochemistry in a cohort of 52 lung adenocarcinomas (10 ALK rearranged, 18 non-ALK rearranged, and 24 untested cases). We found a sensitivity and specificity of 100% for detection of ALK rearrangements using the OFA panel. In addition, targeted next generation sequencing allowed us to analyze a set of 23 driver genes in a single assay. Besides EML4-ALK (11/52 cases), we detected EZR-ROS1 (1/52 cases), KIF5B-RET (1/52 cases) and MET-MET (4/52 cases) fusions. All EML4-ALK, EZR-ROS1 and KIF5B-RET fusions were confirmed by multiplexed targeted next generation sequencing assay (Oncomine Solid Tumor Fusion Transcript Kit, Thermo Fisher Scientific). All cases with EML4-ALK rearrangement were confirmed by Alk immunohistochemistry and all but one by ALK FISH. In our experience, targeted next-generation sequencing is a reliable and timesaving tool for multiplexed detection of targetable rearrangements. Therefore, targeted next-generation sequencing represents an efficient alternative to time-consuming single target assays currently used in molecular pathology.

Kim JO, Shin JY, Kim MY, et al.
Detection of RET (rearranged during transfection) variants and their downstream signal molecules in RET rearranged lung adenocarcinoma patients.
Surg Oncol. 2018; 27(1):106-113 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: We screened resected tumor tissues from patients with lung cancer for EGFR mutations, ALK rearrangements, and rearranged during transfection (RET) gene variants (including RET rearrangements and the Kinesin Family Member 5B (KIF5B)-RET fusion gene) using various methods including reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), transcript assays, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), and immunohistochemistry (IHC). We also examined the protein expression of associated downstream signaling molecules to assess the effect of these variants on patient outcome.
METHOD: We constructed a tissue microarray (TMA) comprising 581 resected tumor tissues from patients with lung adenocarcinoma and analyzed the microarray by both FISH (using RET break-apart and KIF5B-RET SY translocation probes) and a commercial RET transcript assay. We evaluated the expression of RET and RET-related signaling molecules, including p-AKT and p-ERK, by TMA -based IHC staining.
RESULTS: Among the 581 specimens, 51 (8.8%) specimens harbored RET rearrangements, including 12 cases (2.1%) carrying a KIF5B-RET fusion gene. Surprisingly, RET expression was lower in KIF5B-RET fusion gene-positive than in RET wild-type specimens. We detected activating EGFR mutations in 11 (21.6%) of the 51 RET variant-positive specimens. Among the KIF5B-RET fusion gene-positive specimens, p-ERK expression was significantly lower in the EGFR mutation subgroup showing RET expression than in the EGFR mutation subgroup that did not express RET. Similarly, the RET rearrangement group showed significant variation in the expression level of p-AKT (P = 0.028) and p-ERK, whose expression remarkably increased in specimens not expressing RET. The expression of p-ERK markedly increased in the RET rearrangement group regardless of RET expression.
CONCLUSION: This result suggests that a combination of RET and ERK inhibitors may be an effective treatment strategy for lung adenocarcinoma patients harboring RET variants.

Du X, Shao Y, Qin HF, et al.
ALK-rearrangement in non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Thorac Cancer. 2018; 9(4):423-430 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The ALK gene encodes a transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptor. ALK is physiologically expressed in the nervous system during embryogenesis, but its expression decreases postnatally. ALK first emerged in the field of oncology in 1994 when it was identified to fuse to NPM1 in anaplastic large-cell lymphoma. Since then, ALK has been associated with other types of cancers, including non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). More than 19 different ALK fusion partners have been discovered in NSCLC, including EML4, KIF5B, KLC1, and TPR. Most of these ALK fusions in NSCLC patients respond well to the ALK inhibitor, crizotinib. In this paper, we reviewed fusion partner genes with ALK, detection methods for ALK-rearrangement (ALK-R), and the ALK-tyrosine kinase inhibitor, crizotinib, used in NSCLC patients.

Tan L, Hu Y, Tao Y, et al.
Expression and copy number gains of the RET gene in 631 early and mid stage non-small cell lung cancer cases.
Thorac Cancer. 2018; 9(4):445-451 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: To identify whether RET is a potential target for NSCLC treatment, we examined the status of the RET gene in 631 early and mid stage NSCLC cases from south central China.
METHODS: RET expression was identified by Western blot. RET-positive expression samples were verified by immunohistochemistry. RET gene mutation, copy number variation, and rearrangement were analyzed by DNA Sanger sequencing, TaqMan copy number assays, and reverse transcription-PCR. ALK and ROS1 expression levels were tested by Western blot and EGFR mutation using Sanger sequencing.
RESULTS: The RET-positive rate was 2.5% (16/631). RET-positive expression was related to poorer tumor differentiation (P < 0.05). In the 16 RET-positive samples, only two samples of moderately and poorly differentiated lung adenocarcinomas displayed RET rearrangement, both in RET-KIF5B fusion partners. Neither ALK nor ROS1 translocation was found. The EGFR mutation rate in RET-positive samples was significantly lower than in RET-negative samples (P < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: RET-positive expression in early and mid stage NSCLC cases from south central China is relatively low and is related to poorer tumor differentiation. RET gene alterations (copy number gain and rearrangement) exist in all RET-positive samples. RET-positive expression is a relatively independent factor in NSCLC patients, which indicates that the RET gene may be a novel target site for personalized treatment of NSCLC.

Rosenbaum JN, Bloom R, Forys JT, et al.
Genomic heterogeneity of ALK fusion breakpoints in non-small-cell lung cancer.
Mod Pathol. 2018; 31(5):791-808 [PubMed] Related Publications
In lung adenocarcinoma, canonical EML4-ALK inversion results in a fusion protein with a constitutively active ALK kinase domain. Evidence of ALK rearrangement occurs in a minority (2-7%) of lung adenocarcinoma, and only ~60% of these patients will respond to targeted ALK inhibition by drugs such as crizotinib and ceritinib. Clinically, targeted anti-ALK therapy is often initiated based on evidence of an ALK genomic rearrangement detected by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) of interphase cells in formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissue sections. At the genomic level, however, ALK rearrangements are heterogeneous, with multiple potential breakpoints in EML4, and alternate fusion partners. Using next-generation sequencing of DNA and RNA together with ALK immunohistochemistry, we comprehensively characterized genomic breakpoints in 33 FISH-positive lung adenocarcinomas. Of these 33 cases, 29 (88%) had detectable DNA level ALK rearrangements involving EML4, KIF5B, or non-canonical partners including ASXL2, ATP6V1B1, PRKAR1A, and SPDYA. A subset of 12 cases had material available for RNA-Seq. Of these, eight of eight (100%) cases with DNA rearrangements showed ALK fusion transcripts from RNA-Seq; three of four cases (75%) without detectable DNA rearrangements were similarly negative by RNA-Seq, and one case was positive by RNA-Seq but negative by DNA next-generation sequencing. By immunohistochemistry, 17 of 19 (89%) tested cases were clearly positive for ALK protein expression; the remaining cases had no detectable DNA level rearrangement or had a non-canonical rearrangement not predicted to form a fusion protein. Survival analysis of patients treated with targeted ALK inhibitors demonstrates a significant difference in mean survival between patients with next-generation sequencing confirmed EML4-ALK rearrangements, and those without (20.6 months vs 5.4 months, P<0.01). Together, these data demonstrate abundant genomic heterogeneity among ALK-rearranged lung adenocarcinoma, which may account for differences in treatment response with targeted ALK inhibitors.

Piton N, Ruminy P, Gravet C, et al.
Ligation-dependent RT-PCR: a new specific and low-cost technique to detect ALK, ROS, and RET rearrangements in lung adenocarcinoma.
Lab Invest. 2018; 98(3):371-379 [PubMed] Related Publications
Detection of anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK), ROS proto-oncogene 1 (ROS1), and rearranged during transfection (RET) gene rearrangements in lung adenocarcinoma is usually performed by immunohistochemistry (IHC) screening followed by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), which is an expensive and difficult technique. Ligation-dependent reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) multiplex technique can detect gene rearrangements using probes specifically hybridized to either side of the break point. PCR products are then sequenced by pyrosequencing or high throughput sequencing in order to identify the two genes involved. The reagent cost is <15 dollars per patient and results are available in 2 days. We have developed a 47-probe LD-RT-PCR kit especially for lung adenocarcinomas. Thirty-nine lung adenocarcinomas were studied: 24 ALK+, 14 ROS1+, and 1 RET+. ALK+ and ROS1+ were IHC+ (D5F3 Ventana for ALK and D4D6 Cell Signaling Technology for ROS1) and all cases were FISH+ (Vysis ALK Breakapart Probe Abbott for ALK, Zytolight SPEC ROS1 Dualcolor Breakapart Probe for ROS1 and Zytolight SPEC RET Dual Color Breakapart for RET); 14 wild type samples were included as negative controls. Using LD-RT-PCR, 15 rearrangements (63%) were detected in the ALK cases (gene partner: EML4 in all cases), 9 rearrangements (64%) in the ROS1 cases (gene partners: CD74 in 8 cases and SLC34A2 in 1 case) and 1 (100%) in the single RET case (gene partner: KIF5B). No rearrangement was found in the 14 negative control cases. Negative cases using LD-RT-PCR could be explained by the fact that some partner genes were not included in our assay and therefore could not be detected. Because it is an affordable, fast, and very simple technique, we propose using LD-RT-PCR when ALK immunostaining is positive. For LD-RT-PCR-negative cases, samples should then be analyzed by FISH.

Ferrara R, Auger N, Auclin E, Besse B
Clinical and Translational Implications of RET Rearrangements in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.
J Thorac Oncol. 2018; 13(1):27-45 [PubMed] Related Publications
Since the discovery in 2012 of rearranged during transfection proto-oncogene gene (RET) rearrangements in NSCLC, at least 12 different fusion variants have been identified, with kinesin family member 5B gene (KIF5B)-RET being the most frequent and the best characterized. Unlike ALK receptor tyrosine kinase gene (ALK) and ROS1 rearrangements, RET fusion genes cannot be adequately detected by immunohistochemistry (IHC), although fluorescence in situ hybridization and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction are fully complementary diagnostic tools. In large retrospective studies, RET rearrangements correlate with adenocarcinoma histologic subtype, never-smoking status, younger age, more advanced disease stage, potentially higher chemosensitivity (in particular, to pemetrexed-based regimens), and coexistence of other genomic alterations. To date, several preclinical models, clinical trials, and retrospective studies have investigated multitarget inhibitors with anti-rearranged during transfection proto-oncogene (RET) activity in patients with RET-rearranged lung cancer. In the clinical setting, the benefit in terms of response (16%-47%) and progression-free survival (2-7 months) is clearly not comparable to that seen with other targeted agents in oncogene-addicted NSCLC. Furthermore, multikinase agents showed high rates of severe toxicities, leading to frequent dose reduction and drug discontinuation. To date, no definitive conclusions about a potentially different impact of anti-RET therapies according to RET fusion variants have been drawn on account of discordant data coming mostly from small subgroup analyses. Importantly, the absence of a striking clinical benefit in RET oncogene-addicted NSCLC underscores the clear need for development of more selective and potent RET inhibitors and for better characterization of concomitant genomic alterations and mechanisms of resistance to RET inhibition in patients with lung cancer.

Hou H, Yang X, Zhang J, et al.
Discovery of targetable genetic alterations in advanced non-small cell lung cancer using a next-generation sequencing-based circulating tumor DNA assay.
Sci Rep. 2017; 7(1):14605 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) assays have provided a new method of identifying tumor-driving genes in patients with advanced non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC), especially in those whose cancer tissues are unavailable or in those that have acquired treatment resistance. Here, we describe a total of 119 patients with advanced EGFR-TKI-naive NSCLC and 15 EGFR-TKI-resistant patients to identify somatic SNVs, small indels, CNVs and gene fusions in 508 tumor-related genes. Somatic ctDNA mutations were detected in 82.8% (111/134) of patients in the total cohort. Of the 119 patients with advanced NSCLC, 27.7% (33/119) were suitable for treatment with National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) guideline-approved targeted drugs. Actionable genetic alterations included 25 EGFR mutations, 5 BRAF mutations, and 1 MET mutation, as well as 1 EML4-ALK gene fusion and 1 KIF5B-RET gene fusion. In 19.3% (23/119) of the patients, we also identified genomic alterations with that could be targeted by agents that are in clinical trials, such as mTOR inhibitors, PARP inhibitors, and CDK4/6 inhibitors. Additionally, the EGFR T790M mutation was found in 46.7% (7/15) of the patients with EGFR-TKI-resistant NSCLC, suggesting that the NGS-based ctDNA assay might be an optional method to monitor EGFR-TKI resistance and to discover mechanisms of drug resistance.

Viola D, Giani C, Mazzeo S, et al.
KIF5B/RET Rearrangement in a Carcinoma of the Thyroid Gland: A Case Report of a Fatal Disease.
J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2017; 102(9):3091-3096 [PubMed] Related Publications
Background: The diffuse sclerosing variant of papillary thyroid cancer (DSV-PTC) is a rare variant of papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) with different clinicopathological features compared with conventional PTC.
Case: An advanced DSV-PTC was diagnosed in a 39-year-old man. The radioiodine posttherapeutic whole-body-scan showed only an uptake in the central neck, whereas the computerized tomography showed multiple latero-cervical and mediastinum lymph node metastases, a single and spiculated lung lesion and multiple bilateral cerebellum metastases. The patient died after 6 months from the initial diagnosis. The histological revision of the thyroid tumor confirmed the diagnosis of DSV-PTC, and its molecular analysis revealed a KIF5B/RET rearrangement that, until now, was described only in a minority of lung adenocarcinoma. Other 18 cases of DSV-PTC were then studied for the presence of KIF5B/RET rearrangement, but all of them were negative.
Conclusions: This was a case of DSV-PTC positive for KIF5B/RET rearrangement, but considering that this alteration has been described only in lung adenocarcinoma and that the clinical course was more typical of lung carcinoma, we cannot completely rule out the possibility that this was a metastatic lesion from a lung tumor mimicking a DSV-PTC. As an alternative, we can also hypothesize that this was a case of fusion of two tumoral tissues deriving from a DSV-PTC and a metastasis of a KIF5B/RET positive lung adenocarcinoma. The question of whether the molecular findings, particularly when specifically reported only in some subtypes of human tumors, can overcome the morphological diagnosis is a matter of discussion.

Das TK, Cagan RL
KIF5B-RET Oncoprotein Signals through a Multi-kinase Signaling Hub.
Cell Rep. 2017; 20(10):2368-2383 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Gene fusions are increasingly recognized as important cancer drivers. The KIF5B-RET gene has been identified as a primary driver in a subset of lung adenocarcinomas. Targeting human KIF5B-RET to epithelia in Drosophila directed multiple aspects of transformation, including hyperproliferation, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, invasion, and extension of striking invadopodia-like processes. The KIF5B-RET-transformed human bronchial cell line showed similar aspects of transformation, including invadopodia-like processes. Through a combination of genetic and biochemical studies, we demonstrate that the kinesin and kinase domains of KIF5B-RET act together to establish an emergent microtubule and RAB-vesicle-dependent RET-SRC-EGFR-FGFR signaling hub. We demonstrate that drugs designed to inhibit RET alone work poorly in KIF5B-RET-transformed cells. However, combining the RET inhibitor sorafenib with drugs that target EGFR, microtubules, or FGFR led to strong efficacy in both Drosophila and human cell line KIF5B-RET models. This work demonstrates the utility of exploring the full biology of fusions to identify rational therapeutic strategies.

Müller JN, Falk M, Talwar J, et al.
Concordance between Comprehensive Cancer Genome Profiling in Plasma and Tumor Specimens.
J Thorac Oncol. 2017; 12(10):1503-1511 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Detection of somatic genomic alterations in the plasma of patients with cancer ("liquid biopsy") are increasingly being used in the clinic. However, the concordance of alterations identified in liquid biopsies with those detected in cancer specimens is not routinely being determined.
METHODS: We sought to systematically compare alterations found by a massively parallel sequencing liquid biopsy assay covering 39 genes (NEOliquid [NEO New Oncology GmbH, Köln, Germany]) with those identified through routine diagnostic testing in a certified central pathology laboratory in a cohort of patients with nonsquamous NSCLC. NEOliquid is based on enrichment of the genomic territory of interest by hybrid capture and is thus capable of detecting point mutations, small insertions and deletions, copy number alterations, and gene rearrangements/fusions in a single assay.
RESULTS: In a cohort of 82 patients with matched blood/tissue samples, the concordance between NEOliquid and tissue-based routine testing was 98%, the sensitivity of NEOliquid was higher than 70%, and the specificity was 100%. Discordant cases included those with insufficient amounts of circulaating tumor DNA in plasma and cases in which known driver mutations (e.g., isocitrate dehydrogenase (NADP(+)), 1 systolic gene [IDH1] R132H, kinesin family member 5B gene [KIF5b-ret proto-oncogene [RET], or MNNG HOS Transforming gene [MET] exon 14) were found in the plasma but were not interrogated by routine tissue analyses.
CONCLUSIONS: In summary, NEOliquid offers accurate and reliable detection of clinically relevant driver alterations in plasma of patients with cancer.

Gautschi O, Milia J, Filleron T, et al.
Targeting RET in Patients With RET-Rearranged Lung Cancers: Results From the Global, Multicenter RET Registry.
J Clin Oncol. 2017; 35(13):1403-1410 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Purpose In addition to prospective trials for non-small-cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) that are driven by less common genomic alterations, registries provide complementary information on patient response to targeted therapies. Here, we present the results of an international registry of patients with RET-rearranged NSCLCs, providing the largest data set, to our knowledge, on outcomes of RET-directed therapy thus far. Methods A global, multicenter network of thoracic oncologists identified patients with pathologically confirmed NSCLC that harbored a RET rearrangement. Molecular profiling was performed locally by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, fluorescence in situ hybridization, or next-generation sequencing. Anonymized data-clinical, pathologic, and molecular features-were collected centrally and analyzed by an independent statistician. Best response to RET tyrosine kinase inhibition administered outside of a clinical trial was determined by RECIST v1.1. Results By April 2016, 165 patients with RET-rearranged NSCLC from 29 centers across Europe, Asia, and the United States were accrued. Median age was 61 years (range, 29 to 89 years). The majority of patients were never smokers (63%) with lung adenocarcinomas (98%) and advanced disease (91%). The most frequent rearrangement was KIF5B-RET (72%). Of those patients, 53 received one or more RET tyrosine kinase inhibitors in sequence: cabozantinib (21 patients), vandetanib (11 patients), sunitinib (10 patients), sorafenib (two patients), alectinib (two patients), lenvatinib (two patients), nintedanib (two patients), ponatinib (two patients), and regorafenib (one patient). The rate of any complete or partial response to cabozantinib, vandetanib, and sunitinib was 37%, 18%, and 22%, respectively. Further responses were observed with lenvantinib and nintedanib. Median progression-free survival was 2.3 months (95% CI, 1.6 to 5.0 months), and median overall survival was 6.8 months (95% CI, 3.9 to 14.3 months). Conclusion Available multikinase inhibitors had limited activity in patients with RET-rearranged NSCLC in this retrospective study. Further investigation of the biology of RET-rearranged lung cancers and identification of new targeted therapeutics will be required to improve outcomes for these patients.

Sarfaty M, Moore A, Neiman V, et al.
RET Fusion Lung Carcinoma: Response to Therapy and Clinical Features in a Case Series of 14 Patients.
Clin Lung Cancer. 2017; 18(4):e223-e232 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: RET (rearranged during transfection) fusions have been reported in 1% to 2% of lung adenocarcinoma (LADC) cases. In contrast, KIF5B-RET and CCDC6-RET fusion genes have been identified in 70% to 90% and 10% to 25% of tumors, respectively. The natural history and management of RET-rearranged LADC are still being delineated.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We present a series of 14 patients with RET-rearranged LADC. The response to therapy was assessed by the clinical response and an avatar model in 2 cases. Patients underwent chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy.
RESULTS: A total of 14 patients (8 women; 10 never smokers; 4 light smokers; mean age, 57 years) were included. KIF5B-RET and CCDC6-RET variants were diagnosed in 10 and 4 cases, respectively. Eight patients had an early disseminated manifestation, seven with KIF5B-RET rearranged tumor. The features of this subset included bilateral miliary lung metastases, bone metastases, and unusual early visceral abdominal involvement. One such patient demonstrated an early and durable complete response to cabozantinib for 7 months. Another 2 patients treated with cabozantinib experienced a partial response, with rapid significant clinical improvement. Four patients with tumors harboring CCDC6-RET and KIF5B-RET fusions showed pronounced and durable responses to platinum-based chemotherapy that lasted for 8 to 15 months. Two patients' tumors showed programmed cell death ligand 1-positive staining but did not respond to pembrolizumab. The median overall survival was 22.8 months.
CONCLUSION: RET-rearranged LADC in our series tended to occur as bilateral disease with early visceral involvement, especially with KIF5B fusion. Treatment with cabozantinib achieved responses, including 1 complete response. However, further studies are required in this group of patients.

Li GG, Somwar R, Joseph J, et al.
Antitumor Activity of RXDX-105 in Multiple Cancer Types with
Clin Cancer Res. 2017; 23(12):2981-2990 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications

Caino MC, Seo JH, Aguinaldo A, et al.
A neuronal network of mitochondrial dynamics regulates metastasis.
Nat Commun. 2016; 7:13730 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The role of mitochondria in cancer is controversial. Using a genome-wide shRNA screen, we now show that tumours reprogram a network of mitochondrial dynamics operative in neurons, including syntaphilin (SNPH), kinesin KIF5B and GTPase Miro1/2 to localize mitochondria to the cortical cytoskeleton and power the membrane machinery of cell movements. When expressed in tumours, SNPH inhibits the speed and distance travelled by individual mitochondria, suppresses organelle dynamics, and blocks chemotaxis and metastasis, in vivo. Tumour progression in humans is associated with downregulation or loss of SNPH, which correlates with shortened patient survival, increased mitochondrial trafficking to the cortical cytoskeleton, greater membrane dynamics and heightened cell invasion. Therefore, a SNPH network regulates metastatic competence and may provide a therapeutic target in cancer.

Wang Z, Cheng G, Han X, et al.
Application of Single-Molecule Amplification and Resequencing Technology for Broad Surveillance of Plasma Mutations in Patients with Advanced Lung Adenocarcinoma.
J Mol Diagn. 2017; 19(1):169-181 [PubMed] Related Publications
Liquid biopsy to access the circulating tumor DNA is a promising surrogate for invasive tumor genotyping. We designed a multiplex assay based on circulating single-molecule amplification and resequencing technology (cSMART) to simultaneously detect and quantitate hot spot EGFR, KRAS, BRAF, ERBB2, and ALK plasma DNA variants in 103 patients with advanced lung adenocarcinoma. In validation studies using an analytical mutation standard, the sensitivity of the assay for EGFR mutation detection was at least 0.1% and specificity was 100%. The diagnostic detection sensitivity was one mutant molecule per 2 mL of plasma. The most frequently detected plasma mutations were EGFR variants L858R (21.4%), exon 19 deletions (19.4%), T790M (9.7%), and KRAS G12X variants (9.7%). Rarer were BRAF V600X (1.95%) and ERBB2 exon 20 (0.97%) variants. In single samples, four novel EGFR exon 19 deletions, one KIF5B-ALK, and two EML4-ALK variants were also detected. From comparisons of 103 matched plasma and tumor specimen genotypes, 75 (72.8%) were concordant, 9 (8.8%) were partially concordant, and 19 (18.4%) were discordant. Overall, the combined positive and negative concordance rate for detection of each oncogenic variant exceeded 90%. On the basis of these findings, we propose that cSMART displays the diagnostic hallmarks of a comprehensive plasma genotyping assay, with potential application for precisely monitoring changes in plasma mutation levels in response to targeted drug therapy.

Drilon A, Rekhtman N, Arcila M, et al.
Cabozantinib in patients with advanced RET-rearranged non-small-cell lung cancer: an open-label, single-centre, phase 2, single-arm trial.
Lancet Oncol. 2016; 17(12):1653-1660 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: RET rearrangements are found in 1-2% of non-small-cell lung cancers. Cabozantinib is a multikinase inhibitor with activity against RET that produced a 10% overall response in unselected patients with lung cancers. To assess the activity of cabozantinib in patients with RET-rearranged lung cancers, we did a prospective phase 2 trial in this molecular subgroup.
METHODS: We enrolled patients in this open-label, Simon two-stage, single-centre, phase 2, single-arm trial in the USA if they met the following criteria: metastatic or unresectable lung cancer harbouring a RET rearrangement, Karnofsky performance status higher than 70, and measurable disease. Patients were given 60 mg of cabozantinib orally per day. The primary objective was to determine the overall response (Response Criteria Evaluation in Solid Tumors version 1.1) in assessable patients; those who received at least one dose of cabozantinib, and had been given CT imaging at baseline and at least one protocol-specified follow-up timepoint. We did safety analyses in the modified intention-to-treat population who received at least one dose of cabozantinib. The accrual of patients with RET-rearranged lung cancer to this protocol has been completed but the trial is still ongoing because several patients remain on active treatment. This study was registered with, number NCT01639508.
FINDINGS: Between July 13, 2012, and April 30, 2016, 26 patients with RET-rearranged lung adenocarcinomas were enrolled and given cabozantinib; 25 patients were assessable for a response. KIF5B-RET was the predominant fusion type identified in 16 (62%) patients. The study met its primary endpoint, with confirmed partial responses seen in seven of 25 response-assessable patients (overall response 28%, 95% CI 12-49). Of the 26 patients given cabozantinib, the most common grade 3 treatment-related adverse events were lipase elevation in four (15%) patients, increased alanine aminotransferase in two (8%) patients, increased aspartate aminotransferase in two (8%) patients, decreased platelet count in two (8%) patients, and hypophosphataemia in two (8%) patients. No drug-related deaths were recorded but 16 (62%) patients died during the course of follow-up. 19 (73%) patients required dose reductions due to drug-related adverse events.
INTERPRETATION: The reported activity of cabozantinib in patients with RET-rearranged lung cancers defines RET rearrangements as actionable drivers in patients with lung cancers. An improved understanding of tumour biology and novel therapeutic approaches will be needed to improve outcomes with RET-directed targeted treatment.
FUNDING: Exelixis, National Institutes of Health and National Cancer Institute Cancer Center Support Grant P30 CA008748.

Song Z, Yu X, Zhang Y
Clinicopathologic characteristics, genetic variability and therapeutic options of RET rearrangements patients in lung adenocarcinoma.
Lung Cancer. 2016; 101:16-21 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: RET fusion gene is identified as a novel oncogene in a subset of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, few data are available about the prevalence, clinicopathologic characteristics, genetic variability and therapeutic options in RET-positive lung adenocarcinoma patients.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: For 615 patients with lung adenocarcinoma, RET status was detected by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Next-generation sequencing (NGS) and FISH were performed in positive cases. Thymidylate synthetase (TS) mRNA level was assayed by RT-PCR. Overall survival (OS) was evaluated by Kaplan-Meier method and compared with log-rank test.
RESULTS: Twelve RET-positive patients were identified by RT-PCR. However, one patient failed the detection of RET rearrangement by FISH and NGS. Totally, 11 patients (1.8%) confirmed with RET rearrangements by three methods, including six females and five males with a median age of 54 years. The presence of RET rearrangements was associated with lepidic predominant lung adenocarcinoma subtype in five of 11 patients. RET rearrangements comprised of nine KIF5B-RET and two CCDC6-RET fusions. Four patients had concurrent gene variability by NGS detection,including EGFR(n=1),MAP2K1 (n=1), CTNNB1 (n=1) and AKT1 (n=1). No survival difference existed between RET-positive and negative patients (58.1 vs. 52.0 months, P=0.504). The median progression-free survival of first-line pemetrexed/platinum regimen was 7.5 months for four recurrent cases. And the level of TS mRNA was lower in RET-positive patients than that in those RET-negative counterparts (239±188×10
CONCLUSION: The prevalence of RET fusion is approximately 1.8% in Chinese patients with lung adenocarcinoma. RET rearrangements are characterized by lepidic predominance and a lower TS level. RET-rearranged patients may benefit more from pemetrexed-based regimen.

Jang JS, Wang X, Vedell PT, et al.
Custom Gene Capture and Next-Generation Sequencing to Resolve Discordant ALK Status by FISH and IHC in Lung Adenocarcinoma.
J Thorac Oncol. 2016; 11(11):1891-1900 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: We performed a genomic study in lung adenocarcinoma cases with discordant anaplastic lymphoma receptor tyrosine kinase gene (ALK) status by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) and immunohistochemical (IHC) analysis.
METHODS: DNA from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues of 16 discordant (four FISH-positive/IHC-negative and 12 FISH-negative/IHC-positive) cases by Vysis ALK Break Apart FISH and ALK IHC testing (ALK1 clone) were subjected to whole gene capture and next-generation sequencing (NGS) of nine genes, including ALK, echinoderm microtubule associated protein like 4 gene (EML4), kinesin family member 5B gene (KIF5B), staphylococcal nuclease and tudor domain containing 1 gene (SND1), BRAF, ret proto-oncogene (RET), ezrin gene (EZR), ROS1, and telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT). All discordant cases (except one FISH-negative/IHC-positive case without sufficient tissue) were analyzed by IHC with D5F3 antibody. In one case with fresh frozen tissue, whole transcriptome sequencing was also performed. Twenty-six concordant (16 FISH-positive/IHC-positive and 10 FISH-negative/IHC-negative) cases were included as controls.
RESULTS: In four ALK FISH-positive/IHC-negative cases, no EML4-ALK fusion gene was observed by NGS, but in one case using fresh frozen tissue, we identified EML4-baculoviral AIP repeat containing 6 gene (BIRC6) and AP2 associated kinase 1 gene (AAK1)-ALK fusion genes. Whole transcriptome sequencing revealed a highly expressed EML4-BIRC6 fusion transcript and a minimally expressed AAK1 transcript. Among the 12 FISH-negative/IHC-positive cases, no evidence of ALK gene rearrangement was detected by NGS. Eleven of 12 FISH-negative/IHC-positive cases detected by ALK1 clone were concordant by repeat ALK IHC with D5F3 antibody (i.e., FISH-negative/IHC-negative by D5F3 clone). Among the 16 ALK FISH-positive/IHC-positive positive controls, whole gene capture identified ALK gene fusion in 15 cases, including in one case with Huntington interacting protein 1 gene (HIP1)-ALK. No ALK fusion gene was observed in any of the 10 FISH-negative/IHC-negative cases. Other fusion genes involving ROS1, EZR, BRAF, and SND1 were also found.
CONCLUSIONS: ALK FISH results appeared to be false-positive in three of four FISH-positive/IHC-negative cases, whereas no false-negative ALK FISH case was identified among 12 ALK FISH-negative/IHC-positive cases by ALK1 clone, which was in keeping with the concordant FISH-negative/IHC-negative status by D5F3 clone. Our targeted whole gene capture approach using formalin-fixed paraffin embedded samples was effective for detecting rearrangements involving ALK and other actionable oncogenes.

Kato S, Subbiah V, Marchlik E, et al.
Clin Cancer Res. 2017; 23(8):1988-1997 [PubMed] Related Publications

Huang Q, Schneeberger VE, Luetteke N, et al.
Preclinical Modeling of KIF5B-RET Fusion Lung Adenocarcinoma.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2016; 15(10):2521-2529 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
RET fusions have been found in lung adenocarcinoma, of which KIF5B-RET is the most prevalent. We established inducible KIF5B-RET transgenic mice and KIF5B-RET-dependent cell lines for preclinical modeling of KIF5B-RET-associated lung adenocarcinoma. Doxycycline-induced CCSP-rtTA/tetO-KIF5B-RET transgenic mice developed invasive lung adenocarcinoma with desmoplastic reaction. Tumors regressed upon suppression of KIF5B-RET expression. By culturing KIF5B-RET-dependent BaF3 (B/KR) cells with increasing concentrations of cabozantinib or vandetanib, we identified cabozantinib-resistant RET

Lin C, Wang S, Xie W, et al.
Apatinib inhibits cellular invasion and migration by fusion kinase KIF5B-RET via suppressing RET/Src signaling pathway.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(37):59236-59244 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The Rearranged during transfection (RET) fusion gene is a newly identified oncogenic mutation in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The aim of this study is to explore the biological functions of the gene in tumorigenesis and metastasis in RET gene fusion-driven preclinical models. We also investigate the anti-tumor activity of Apatinib, a potent inhibitor of VEGFR-2, PDGFR-β, c-Src and RET, in RET-rearranged lung adenocarcinoma, together with the mechanisms underlying. Our results suggested that KIF5B-RET fusion gene promoted cell invasion and migration, which were probably mediated through Src signaling pathway. Apatinib exerted its anti-cancer effect not only via cytotoxicity, but also via inhibition of migration and invasion by suppressing RET/Src signaling pathway, supporting a potential role for Apatinib in the treatment of KIF5B-RET driven tumors.

Ruane PT, Gumy LF, Bola B, et al.
Tumour Suppressor Adenomatous Polyposis Coli (APC) localisation is regulated by both Kinesin-1 and Kinesin-2.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:27456 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Microtubules and their associated proteins (MAPs) underpin the polarity of specialised cells. Adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) is one such MAP with a multifunctional agenda that requires precise intracellular localisations. Although APC has been found to associate with kinesin-2 subfamily members, the exact mechanism for the peripheral localization of APC remains unclear. Here we show that the heavy chain of kinesin-1 directly interacts with the APC C-terminus, contributing to the peripheral localisation of APC in fibroblasts. In rat hippocampal neurons the kinesin-1 binding domain of APC is required for its axon tip enrichment. Moreover, we demonstrate that APC requires interactions with both kinesin-2 and kinesin-1 for this localisation. Underlining the importance of the kinesin-1 association, neurons expressing APC lacking kinesin-1-binding domain have shorter axons. The identification of this novel kinesin-1-APC interaction highlights the complexity and significance of APC localisation in neurons.

Lim SM, Kim EY, Kim HR, et al.
Genomic profiling of lung adenocarcinoma patients reveals therapeutic targets and confers clinical benefit when standard molecular testing is negative.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(17):24172-8 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Identification of clinically relevant oncogenic drivers in advanced cancer is critical in selecting appropriate targeted therapy. Using next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based clinical cancer gene assay, we performed comprehensive genomic profiling (CGP) of advanced cases of lung adenocarcinoma.
METHODS: Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tumors from 51 lung adenocarcinoma patients whose tumors previously tested negative for EGFR/KRAS/ALK by conventional methods were collected, and CGP was performed via hybridization capture of 4,557 exons from 287 cancer-related genes and 47 introns from 19 genes frequently rearranged in cancer.
RESULTS: Genomic profiles of all 51 cases were obtained, with a median coverage of 564x and a total of 190 individual genomic alterations (GAs). GAs per specimen was a mean of 3.7 (range 0-10).Cancer genomes are characterized by 50% (80/190) non-synonymous base substitutions, 15% (29/190) insertions or deletion, and 3% (5/190) splice site mutation. TP53 mutation was the most common GAs (15%, n=29/190), followed by CDKN2A homozygous loss (5%, n=10/190), KRAS mutation (4%, n=8/190), EGFR mutation (4%, n=8/190) and MDM2 amplification (2%, n=5/190). As per NCCN guidelines, targetable GAs were identified in 16 patients (31%) (BRAF mutation [n=1], EGFR mutation [n=8], ERBB2 mutation [n=4], MET amplification [n=1], KIF5B-RET rearrangement [n=2], CCDC6-RET rearrangement [n=1], CD74-ROS1 rearrangement [n=1], EZR-ROS1 rearrangement [n=5], and SLC34A2-ROS1 rearrangement [n=1]).
CONCLUSION: Fifty eight percent of patients wild type by standard testing for EGFR/KRAS/ALK have GAs identifiable by CGP that suggest benefit from target therapy. CGP used when standard molecular testing for NSCLC is negative can reveal additional avenues of benefit from targeted therapy.

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