Gene Summary

Gene:CIC; capicua transcriptional repressor
Summary:The protein encoded by this gene is an ortholog of the Drosophila melanogaster capicua gene, and is a member of the high mobility group (HMG)-box superfamily of transcriptional repressors. This protein contains a conserved HMG domain that is involved in DNA binding and nuclear localization, and a conserved C-terminus. Studies suggest that the N-terminal region of this protein interacts with Atxn1 (GeneID:6310), to form a transcription repressor complex, and in vitro studies suggest that polyglutamine-expansion of ATXN1 may alter the repressor activity of this complex. Mutations in this gene have been associated with olidogdendrogliomas (PMID:21817013). In addition, translocation events resulting in gene fusions of this gene with both DUX4 (GeneID:100288687) and FOXO4 (GeneID:4303) have been associated with round cell sarcomas. There are multiple pseudogenes of this gene found on chromosomes 1, 4, 6, 7, 16, 20, and the Y chromosome. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants encoding different isoforms. [provided by RefSeq, Feb 2015]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:protein capicua homolog
Source:NCBIAccessed: 16 March, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 16 March 2015 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 16 March, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (6)

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: CIC (cancer-related)

Cohen AL, Colman H
Glioma biology and molecular markers.
Cancer Treat Res. 2015; 163:15-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
The tumors classified as gliomas include a wide variety of histologies including the more common (astrocytoma, glioblastoma), as well as the less common histologies (oligodendroglioma, mixed oligoastrocytoma, pilocytic astrocytoma). Recent efforts at comprehensive genetic characterization of various primary brain tumor types have identified a number of common alterations and pathways common to multiple tumor types. Common pathways in glioma biology include growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases and their downstream signaling via the MAP kinase cascade or PI3K signaling, loss of apoptosis through p53, cell cycle regulation, angiogenesis via VEGF signaling, and invasion. However, in addition to these common general pathway alterations, a number of specific alterations have been identified in particular tumor types, and a number of these have direct therapeutic implications. These include mutations or fusions in the BRAF gene seen in pilocytic astrocytomas (and gangliogliomas). In oligodendrogliomas, mutations in IDH1 and codeletion of chromosomes 1p and 19q are associated with improved survival with upfront use of combined chemotherapy and radiation, and these tumors also have unique mutations of CIC and FUBP1 genes. Low grade gliomas are increasingly seen to be divided into two groups based on IDH mutation status, with astrocytomas developing through IDH mutation followed by p53 mutation, while poor prognosis low grade gliomas and primary glioblastomas (GBMs) are characterized by EGFR amplification, loss of PTEN, and loss of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors. GBMs can be further characterized based on gene expression and gene methylation patterns into three or four distinct subgroups. Prognostic markers in diffuse gliomas include IDH mutation, 1p/19q codeletion, and MGMT methylation, and MGMT is also a predictive marker in elderly patients with glioblastoma treated with temozolomide monotherapy.

Li TW, Peng H, Yang H, et al.
S-Adenosylmethionine and methylthioadenosine inhibit β-catenin signaling by multiple mechanisms in liver and colon cancer.
Mol Pharmacol. 2015; 87(1):77-86 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/01/2016 Related Publications
S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe), the principal methyl donor that is available as a nutritional supplement, and its metabolite methylthioadenosine (MTA) exert chemopreventive properties against liver and colon cancer in experimental models. Both agents reduced β-catenin expression on immunohistochemistry in a murine colitis-associated colon cancer model. In this study, we examined the molecular mechanisms involved. SAMe or MTA treatment in the colitis-associated cancer model lowered total β-catenin protein levels by 47 and 78%, respectively. In an orthotopic liver cancer model, increasing SAMe levels by overexpressing methionine adenosyltransferase 1A also reduced total β-catenin levels by 68%. In both cases, lower cyclin D1 and c-Myc expression correlated with lower β-catenin levels. In liver (HepG2) and colon (SW480, HCT116) cancer cells with constitutively active β-catenin signaling, SAMe and MTA treatment inhibited β-catenin activity by excluding it from the nuclear compartment. However, in liver (Huh-7) and colon (RKO) cancer cells expressing wild-type Wnt/β-catenin, SAMe and MTA accelerated β-catenin degradation by a glycogen synthase kinase 3-β-dependent mechanism. Both agents lowered protein kinase B activity, but this was not mediated by inhibiting phosphoinositide 3-kinase. Instead, both agents increased the activity of protein phosphatase 2A, which inactivates protein kinase B. The effect of MTA on lowering β-catenin is direct and not mediated by its conversion to SAMe, as blocking this conversion had no influence. In conclusion, SAMe and MTA inhibit Wnt/β-catenin signaling in colon and liver cancer cells regardless of whether this pathway is aberrantly induced, making them ideal candidates for chemoprevention and/or chemotherapy in these cancers.

Labussière M, Di Stefano AL, Gleize V, et al.
TERT promoter mutations in gliomas, genetic associations and clinico-pathological correlations.
Br J Cancer. 2014; 111(10):2024-32 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 11/11/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The role of telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) in gliomagenesis has been recently further strengthened by the frequent occurrence of TERT promoter mutations (TERTp-mut) in gliomas and evidence that the TERT SNP genetic rs2736100 influences glioma risk. TERTp-mut creates a binding site for Ets/TCF transcription factors, whereas the common rs2853669 polymorphism disrupts another Ets/TCF site on TERT promoter.
METHODS: We sequenced for TERTp-mut in 807 glioma DNAs and in 235 blood DNAs and analysed TERT expression by RT-PCR in 151 samples. TERTp-mut status and TERTp polymorphism rs2853669 were correlated with histology, genomic profile, TERT mRNA expression, clinical outcome and rs2736100 genotype.
RESULTS: TERTp-mut identified in 60.8% of gliomas (491 out of 807) was globally associated with poorer outcome (Hazard ratio (HR)=1.50). We defined, based on TERTp-mut and IDH mutation status, four prognostic groups: (1) TERTp-mut and IDH-mut associated with 1p19q codeletion, overall survival (OS)>17 years; (2) TERTp-wt and IDH-mut, associated with TP53 mutation, OS=97.5 months; (3) TERTp-wt and IDH-wt, with no specific association, OS=31.6 months; (4) TERTp-mut and IDH-wt, associated with EGFR amplification, OS=15.4 months. TERTp-mut was associated with higher TERT mRNA expression, whereas the rs2853669 variant was associated with lower TERT mRNA expression. The mutation of CIC (a repressor of ETV1-5 belonging to the Ets/TCF family) was also associated with TERT mRNA upregulation.
CONCLUSIONS: In addition to IDH mutation status, defining the TERTp-mut status of glial tumours should afford enhanced prognostic stratification of patients with glioma. We also show that TERTp-mut, rs2853669 variant and CIC mutation influence Tert expression. This effect could be mediated by Ets/TCF transcription factors.

Brohl AS, Solomon DA, Chang W, et al.
The genomic landscape of the Ewing Sarcoma family of tumors reveals recurrent STAG2 mutation.
PLoS Genet. 2014; 10(7):e1004475 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 11/11/2015 Related Publications
The Ewing sarcoma family of tumors (EFT) is a group of highly malignant small round blue cell tumors occurring in children and young adults. We report here the largest genomic survey to date of 101 EFT (65 tumors and 36 cell lines). Using a combination of whole genome sequencing and targeted sequencing approaches, we discover that EFT has a very low mutational burden (0.15 mutations/Mb) but frequent deleterious mutations in the cohesin complex subunit STAG2 (21.5% tumors, 44.4% cell lines), homozygous deletion of CDKN2A (13.8% and 50%) and mutations of TP53 (6.2% and 71.9%). We additionally note an increased prevalence of the BRCA2 K3326X polymorphism in EFT patient samples (7.3%) compared to population data (OR 7.1, p = 0.006). Using whole transcriptome sequencing, we find that 11% of tumors pathologically diagnosed as EFT lack a typical EWSR1 fusion oncogene and that these tumors do not have a characteristic Ewing sarcoma gene expression signature. We identify samples harboring novel fusion genes including FUS-NCATc2 and CIC-FOXO4 that may represent distinct small round blue cell tumor variants. In an independent EFT tissue microarray cohort, we show that STAG2 loss as detected by immunohistochemistry may be associated with more advanced disease (p = 0.15) and a modest decrease in overall survival (p = 0.10). These results significantly advance our understanding of the genomic and molecular underpinnings of Ewing sarcoma and provide a foundation towards further efforts to improve diagnosis, prognosis, and precision therapeutics testing.

Sugita S, Arai Y, Tonooka A, et al.
A novel CIC-FOXO4 gene fusion in undifferentiated small round cell sarcoma: a genetically distinct variant of Ewing-like sarcoma.
Am J Surg Pathol. 2014; 38(11):1571-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Differential diagnosis of small round cell sarcomas (SRCSs) grouped under the Ewing sarcoma family of tumors (ESFT) can be a challenging situation for pathologists. Recent studies have revealed that some groups of Ewing-like sarcoma show typical ESFT morphology but lack any EWSR1-ETS gene fusions. Here we identified a novel gene fusion, CIC-FOXO4, in a case of Ewing-like sarcoma with a t(X;19)(q13;q13.3) translocation. The patient was a 63-year-old man who had an asymptomatic, 30-mm, well-demarcated, intramuscular mass in his right posterior neck, and imaging findings suggested a diagnosis of high-grade sarcoma. He was treated with complete resection and subsequent radiotherapy and chemotherapy. He was alive without local recurrence or distant metastasis 6 months after the operation. Histologic examination revealed SRCS with abundant desmoplastic fibrous stroma suggesting a desmoplastic small round cell tumor. Immunohistochemical analysis showed weak to moderate and partial staining for MIC2 (CD99) and WT1, respectively. High-throughput transcriptome sequencing revealed a gene fusion, and the genomic rearrangement between the CIC and FOXO4 genes was identified by fluorescence in situ hybridization. Aside from the desmoplastic stroma, the CIC-FOXO4 fusion sarcoma showed morphologic and immunohistochemical similarity to ESFT and Ewing-like sarcomas, including the recently described CIC-DUX4 fusion sarcoma. Although clinicopathologic analysis with additional cases is necessary, we conclude that CIC-FOXO4 fusion sarcoma is a new type of Ewing-like sarcoma that has a specific genetic signature. These findings have important implications for the differential diagnosis of SRCS.

Schoppmann SF, Ricken G, Ilhan-Mutlu A, et al.
Downregulation of CIC does not associate with overexpression of ETV1 or MAP kinase pathway activation in gastrointestinal stromal tumors.
Cancer Invest. 2014; 32(7):363-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
ETV1 is a key factor in gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST), and is promoted by CIC downregulation in melanoma. We investigated CIC, ETV1, and the MAPK pathway in GIST. Downregulation of CIC protein levels as assessed by immunostaining was seen in 17/144 GIST, but was not associated with ETV1 or pMEK1/2 expression, KIT and PDGFRA mutations, copy number variations (CNV) of 19q13, and clinical factors. However, the data indicate that the incidence of CIC downregulation may differ for GISTs in different locations in the gastrointestinal tract, and that CNV of 19q13 is associated with shorter disease-free survival.

Morales M, Arenas EJ, Urosevic J, et al.
RARRES3 suppresses breast cancer lung metastasis by regulating adhesion and differentiation.
EMBO Mol Med. 2014; 6(7):865-81 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 11/11/2015 Related Publications
In estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer patients, metastatic relapse usually occurs in the lung and is responsible for the fatal outcome of the disease. Thus, a better understanding of the biology of metastasis is needed. In particular, biomarkers to identify patients that are at risk of lung metastasis could open the avenue for new therapeutic opportunities. Here we characterize the biological activity of RARRES3, a new metastasis suppressor gene whose reduced expression in the primary breast tumors identifies a subgroup of patients more likely to develop lung metastasis. We show that RARRES3 downregulation engages metastasis-initiating capabilities by facilitating adhesion of the tumor cells to the lung parenchyma. In addition, impaired tumor cell differentiation due to the loss of RARRES3 phospholipase A1/A2 activity also contributes to lung metastasis. Our results establish RARRES3 downregulation as a potential biomarker to identify patients at high risk of lung metastasis who might benefit from a differentiation treatment in the adjuvant programme.

Westwood M, Joore M, Whiting P, et al.
Epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase (EGFR-TK) mutation testing in adults with locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer: a systematic review and cost-effectiveness analysis.
Health Technol Assess. 2014; 18(32):1-166 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common form of lung cancer. Some epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase (EGFR-TK) mutations make tumours responsive to treatment with EGFR-TK inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs) but less responsive to treatment with standard chemotherapy. Patients with NSCLC are therefore tested for EGFR-TK tumour gene mutations to inform treatment decisions. There are a variety of tests available to detect these mutations. The different tests vary in the specific mutations that they attempt to detect, the amount of tumour cells needed for the test to work, the time that it takes to give a result, the error rate of the test, and the cost of the test.
OBJECTIVE: To compare the performance and cost-effectiveness of EGFR-TK mutation tests used to identify previously untreated adults with locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC, who may benefit from first-line treatment with TKIs.
DATA SOURCES: Twelve databases to August 2012 [including MEDLINE, MEDLINE In-Process & Other Non-Indexed Citations and Daily Update (OvidSP), EMBASE, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (CDSR), Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE), Health Technology Assessment database (HTA), Science Citation Index (SCI), Latin American and Caribbean Health Sciences Literature (LILACS), BIOSIS Previews, NIHR Health Technology Assessment programme, PROSPERO (International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews)], research registers and conference proceedings. A web-based survey gathered data on technical performance of EGFR-TK mutation tests.
METHODS: Randomised controlled trials were assessed for methodological quality using the Cochrane risk of bias tool. Diagnostic accuracy studies were assessed using QUADAS-2. There were insufficient data for meta-analysis. For accuracy studies, we calculated sensitivity and specificity together with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Survival data were summarised as hazard ratios and tumour response data as relative risks, with 95% CIs. The health-economic analysis considered the long-term costs and quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) associated with different tests followed by treatment with either standard chemotherapy or a TKI. Direct sequencing was taken as the comparator. The de novo model consisted of a decision tree and a Markov model.
RESULTS: The survey indicated no differences between tests in batch size, turnaround time, number of failed samples or cost. Six studies provided data on the accuracy of EGFR-TK mutation testing for predicting response to treatment with TKIs. Estimates of accuracy were similar across studies. Six analyses provided data on the clinical effectiveness of TKIs compared with standard chemotherapy. There were no clear differences in the treatment effects reported by different studies, regardless of which EGFR mutation test was used to select patients. Cost-effectiveness analysis using 'Evidence on comparative effectiveness available' and 'Linked evidence' approaches: Therascreen(®) EGFR polymerase chain reaction (PCR) Kit (Qiagen, Venlo, the Netherlands) was both less effective and less costly than direct sequencing of all exon 19-21 mutations at an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of £32,167 (comparative) and £32,190 (linked) per QALY lost. 'Assumption of equal prognostic value' approach: the lowest total strategy cost was [commercial-in-confidence (CiC) information has been removed] [Sanger sequencing or Roche cobas EGFR Mutation Testing Kit(®) (Roche Molecular Systems, Inc., Branchburg, NJ, USA)] compared with (CiC information has been removed) for the most expensive strategy (fragment length analysis combined with pyrosequencing).
LIMITATIONS: The cost-effectiveness analysis assumed that the differences in outcomes between the results of the trials were solely attributable to the different mutation tests used to distinguish between patients; this assumption ignores other factors that might explain this variation.
CONCLUSION: There was no strong evidence that any one EGFR mutation test had greater accuracy than any other test. Re-testing of stored samples from previous studies, where patient outcomes are already known, could be used to provide information on the relative effectiveness of TKIs and standard chemotherapy in patients with EGFR mutation-positive and mutation-negative tumours, where mutation status is determined using tests for which adequate data are currently unavailable.
FUNDING: The National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment programme.

Jia AY, Castillo-Martin M, Bonal DM, et al.
MicroRNA-126 inhibits invasion in bladder cancer via regulation of ADAM9.
Br J Cancer. 2014; 110(12):2945-54 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The miRNA deregulation is commonly observed in human malignancies, where they act as tumour suppressors or oncogenes. Despite the association of several miRNAs with bladder cancer, little is known about the miRNAs that contribute to bladder cancer progression from non-muscle invasive (NMI) to muscle-invasive (MI) disease.
METHODS: We first profiled the expression of miRNAs and mRNAs in a cohort of urothelial carcinomas and further characterised the role of miR-126 in invasion, as it emerged as the most downregulated miRNA between MI and NMI tumours.
RESULTS: We found that restoration of miR-126 levels attenuated the invasive potential of bladder cancer cells. Mechanistically, we identified the role of miR-126 in invasion through its ability to target ADAM9. Notably, a significant inverse correlation between miR-126 and ADAM9 expression was observed, where ADAM9 was upregulated in MI bladder cancer cells. While knockdown of ADAM9 attenuated the invasiveness of cells with low miR-126 levels, experimental upregulation of ADAM9 recapitulated the invasive phenotype. Furthermore, ADAM9 expression assessed by immunohistochemistry significantly correlated with poor prognosis in patients with urothelial carcinoma.
CONCLUSIONS: In this study we describe the role of miR-126 in bladder cancer progression, identifying miR-126 and ADAM9 as potential clinical biomarkers of disease aggressiveness.

Specht K, Sung YS, Zhang L, et al.
Distinct transcriptional signature and immunoprofile of CIC-DUX4 fusion-positive round cell tumors compared to EWSR1-rearranged Ewing sarcomas: further evidence toward distinct pathologic entities.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2014; 53(7):622-33 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Round cell sarcomas harboring CIC-DUX4 fusions have recently been described as highly aggressive soft tissue tumors of children and young adults. Due to partial morphologic and immunohistochemical overlap with Ewing sarcoma (ES), CIC-DUX4-positive tumors have generally been classified as ES-like and managed similarly; however, a systematic comparison at the molecular and immunohistochemical levels between these two groups has not yet been conducted. Based on an initial observation that CIC-DUX4-positive tumors show nuclear immunoreactivity for WT1 and ETS transcription factors, FLI1 and ERG, we performed a detailed immunohistochemical and molecular analysis including these markers, to further investigate the relationship between CIC-DUX4 tumors and ES. The study group included 21 CIC-DUX4-positive sarcomas and 20 EWSR1-rearranged ES. Immunohistochemically, CIC-DUX4 sarcomas showed membranous CD99 positivity in 18 (86%) cases, but only 5 (24%) with a diffuse pattern, while WT1 and FLI1 were strongly positive in all cases. ERG was positive in 18% of cases. All ES expressed CD99 and FLI1, while ERG positivity was only seen in EWSR1-ERG fusion positive ES. WT1 was negative in all ES. Expression profiling validated by q-PCR revealed a distinct gene signature associated with CIC-DUX4 fusion, with upregulation of ETS transcription factors (ETV4, ETV1, and ETV5) and WT1, among top overexpressed genes compared to ES, other sarcomas and normal tissue. In conclusion, the distinct gene signature and immunoprofile of CIC-DUX4 sarcomas suggest a distinct pathogenesis from ES. The consistent WT1 expression may provide a useful clue in the diagnosis in the context of round cell sarcomas negative for EWSR1 rearrangement. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Wakimoto H, Tanaka S, Curry WT, et al.
Targetable signaling pathway mutations are associated with malignant phenotype in IDH-mutant gliomas.
Clin Cancer Res. 2014; 20(11):2898-909 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
PURPOSE: Isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) gene mutations occur in low-grade and high-grade gliomas. We sought to identify the genetic basis of malignant phenotype heterogeneity in IDH-mutant gliomas.
METHODS: We prospectively implanted tumor specimens from 20 consecutive IDH1-mutant glioma resections into mouse brains and genotyped all resection specimens using a CLIA-certified molecular panel. Gliomas with cancer driver mutations were tested for sensitivity to targeted inhibitors in vitro. Associations between genomic alterations and outcomes were analyzed in patients.
RESULTS: By 10 months, 8 of 20 IDH1-mutant gliomas developed intracerebral xenografts. All xenografts maintained mutant IDH1 and high levels of 2-hydroxyglutarate on serial transplantation. All xenograft-producing gliomas harbored "lineage-defining" mutations in CIC (oligodendroglioma) or TP53 (astrocytoma), and 6 of 8 additionally had activating mutations in PIK3CA or amplification of PDGFRA, MET, or N-MYC. Only IDH1 and CIC/TP53 mutations were detected in non-xenograft-forming gliomas (P = 0.0007). Targeted inhibition of the additional alterations decreased proliferation in vitro. Moreover, we detected alterations in known cancer driver genes in 13.4% of IDH-mutant glioma patients, including PIK3CA, KRAS, AKT, or PTEN mutation or PDGFRA, MET, or N-MYC amplification. IDH/CIC mutant tumors were associated with PIK3CA/KRAS mutations whereas IDH/TP53 tumors correlated with PDGFRA/MET amplification. Presence of driver alterations at progression was associated with shorter subsequent progression-free survival (median 9.0 vs. 36.1 months; P = 0.0011).
CONCLUSION: A subset of IDH-mutant gliomas with mutations in driver oncogenes has a more malignant phenotype in patients. Identification of these alterations may provide an opportunity for use of targeted therapies in these patients. Clin Cancer Res; 20(11); 2898-909. ©2014 AACR.

Kolukula VK, Sahu G, Wellstein A, et al.
SLC25A1, or CIC, is a novel transcriptional target of mutant p53 and a negative tumor prognostic marker.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(5):1212-25 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Mutations of the p53 gene hallmark many human cancers. Several p53 mutant proteins acquire the capability to promote cancer progression and metastasis, a phenomenon defined as Gain of Oncogenic Function (GOF). The downstream targets by which GOF p53 mutants perturb cellular programs relevant to oncogenesis are only partially known. We have previously demonstrated that SLC25A1 (CIC) promotes tumorigenesis, while its inhibition blunts tumor growth. We now report that CIC is a direct transcriptional target of several p53 mutants. We identify a novel interaction between mutant p53 (mutp53) and the transcription factor FOXO-1 which is responsible for regulation of CIC expression levels. Tumor cells harboring mutp53 display higher CIC levels relative to p53 null or wild-type tumors, and inhibition of CIC activity blunts mutp53-driven tumor growth, partially overcoming GOF activity. CIC inhibition also enhances the chemotherapeutic potential of platinum-based agents. Finally, we found that elevated CIC levels predict poor survival outcome in tumors hallmarked by high frequency of p53 mutations. Our results identify CIC as a novel target of mutp53 and imply that the employment of CIC inhibitors may improve survival rates and reduce chemo-resistance in tumors harboring these types of mutations, which are among the most intractable forms of cancers.

Mosen-Ansorena D, Telleria N, Veganzones S, et al.
seqCNA: an R package for DNA copy number analysis in cancer using high-throughput sequencing.
BMC Genomics. 2014; 15:178 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Deviations in the amount of genomic content that arise during tumorigenesis, called copy number alterations, are structural rearrangements that can critically affect gene expression patterns. Additionally, copy number alteration profiles allow insight into cancer discrimination, progression and complexity. On data obtained from high-throughput sequencing, improving quality through GC bias correction and keeping false positives to a minimum help build reliable copy number alteration profiles.
RESULTS: We introduce seqCNA, a parallelized R package for an integral copy number analysis of high-throughput sequencing cancer data. The package includes novel methodology on (i) filtering, reducing false positives, and (ii) GC content correction, improving copy number profile quality, especially under great read coverage and high correlation between GC content and copy number. Adequate analysis steps are automatically chosen based on availability of paired-end mapping, matched normal samples and genome annotation.
CONCLUSIONS: seqCNA, available through Bioconductor, provides accurate copy number predictions in tumoural data, thanks to the extensive filtering and better GC bias correction, while providing an integrated and parallelized workflow.

Guo J, Guo H, Wang Z
Inferring the temporal order of cancer gene mutations in individual tumor samples.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(2):e89244 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
The temporal order of cancer gene mutations in tumors is essential for understanding and treating the disease. Existing methods are unable to infer the order of mutations that are identified at the same time in individual tumor samples, leaving the heterogeneity of the order unknown. Here, we show that through a complex network-based approach, which is based on the newly defined statistic -carcinogenesis information conductivity (CIC), the temporal order in individual samples can be effectively inferred. The results suggest that tumor-suppressor genes might more frequently initiate the order of mutations than oncogenes, and every type of cancer might have its own unique order of mutations. The initial mutations appear to be dedicated to acquiring the function of evading apoptosis, and some order constraints might reflect potential regularities. Our approach is completely data-driven without any parameter settings and can be expected to become more effective as more data will become available.

García-Baquero R, Puerta P, Beltran M, et al.
Methylation of tumor suppressor genes in a novel panel predicts clinical outcome in paraffin-embedded bladder tumors.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(6):5777-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
DNA methylation of tumor suppressor genes (TSGs) represents a frequent and early epigenetic event with potential applications for cancer detection and disease evolution. Our aim was to examine the stratification and prognostic biomarker role of the methylation of a novel panel of TSGs in bladder cancer. The methylation status of 18 TSGs was evaluated in bladder cancer cells (n=14) and paraffin-embedded primary bladder tumors (n=61), using a methylation-specific multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification assay (MS-MLPA). Recurrence, progression, and disease-specific survival were analyzed using univariate and multivariate Cox models. PRDM2, HLTF, ID4, DLC1, BNIP3, H2AFX, CACNA1G, TGIF, and CACNA1A were discovered methylated in bladder cancer. The methylation of RUNX3 (p=0.026), TWIST1 (p=0.009), SFRP4 (p=0.002), and CCND2 (p=0.027) correlated to tumor stage. Univariate analyses indicated prognostic associations for recurrence (DLC1, SFRP5, H2AFX, CACNA1G), progression (DLC1, SFRP5, CACNA1G), disease-specific (PRDM2, DLC1, SFRP5, CACNA1G, and TIMP3), and overall survival (SFRP5 and TIMP3). In multivariate analyses, several TSGs remained as independent prognosticators for recurrence (SFRP5, H2AFX), progression (CACNA1G), and disease-specific survival (SFRP5). Thus, a novel set of TSGs was identified, frequently methylated in bladder cancer cells and tumors. TSG methylation allowed histopathologic and outcome stratification using paraffin-embedded tumors. This is clinically relevant by offering a strategy for the management of patients affected with uroepithelial neoplasias in pathology routine laboratories.

Amaral AT, Manara MC, Berghuis D, et al.
Characterization of human mesenchymal stem cells from ewing sarcoma patients. Pathogenetic implications.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(2):e85814 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Ewing Sarcoma (EWS) is a mesenchymal-derived tumor that generally arises in bone and soft tissue. Intensive research regarding the pathogenesis of EWS has been insufficient to pinpoint the early events of Ewing sarcomagenesis. However, the Mesenchymal Stem Cell (MSC) is currently accepted as the most probable cell of origin.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: In an initial study regarding a deep characterization of MSC obtained specifically from EWS patients (MSC-P), we compared them with MSC derived from healthy donors (MSC-HD) and EWS cell lines. We evaluated the presence of the EWS-FLI1 gene fusion and EWSR1 gene rearrangements in MSC-P. The presence of the EWS transcript was confirmed by q-RT-PCR. In order to determine early events possibly involved in malignant transformation, we used a multiparameter quantitative strategy that included both MSC immunophenotypic negative/positive markers, and EWS intrinsic phenotypical features. Markers CD105, CD90, CD34 and CD45 were confirmed in EWS samples.
RESULTS: We determined that MSC-P lack the most prevalent gene fusion, EWSR1-FLI1 as well as EWSR1 gene rearrangements. Our study also revealed that MSC-P are more alike to MSC-HD than to EWS cells. Nonetheless, we also observed that EWS cells had a few overlapping features with MSC. As a relevant example, also MSC showed CD99 expression, hallmark of EWS diagnosis. However, we observed that, in contrast to EWS cells, MSC were not sensitive to the inhibition of CD99.
CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, our results suggest that MSC from EWS patients behave like MSC-HD and are phenotypically different from EWS cells, thus raising important questions regarding MSC role in sarcomagenesis.

Morita R, Nishizawa S, Torigoe T, et al.
Heat shock protein DNAJB8 is a novel target for immunotherapy of colon cancer-initiating cells.
Cancer Sci. 2014; 105(4):389-95 [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of the present study was to establish cancer stem-like cell/cancer-initiating cell (CSC/CIC)-targeting immunotherapy. The CSC/CIC are thought to be essential for tumor maintenance, recurrence and distant metastasis. Therefore they are reasonable targets for cancer therapy. In the present study, we found that a heat shock protein (HSP) 40 family member, DnaJ (Hsp40) homolog, subfamily B, member 8 (DNAJB8), is preferentially expressed in CSC/CIC derived from colorectal cancer (CRC) cells rather than in non-CSC/CIC. Overexpression of DNAJB8 enhanced the expression of stem cell markers and tumorigenicity, indicating that DNAJB8 has a role in CRC CSC/CIC. A DNAJB8-specific cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response could be induced by a DNAJB8-derived antigenic peptide. A CTL clone specific for DNAJB8 peptide showed higher killing activity to CRC CSC/CIC compared with non-CSC/CIC, and CTL adoptive transfer into CRC CSC/CIC showed an antitumor effect in vivo. Taken together, the results indicate that DNAJB8 is expressed and has role in CRC CSC/CIC and that DNAJB8 is a novel target of CRC CSC/CIC-targeting immunotherapy.

Gonzalez E, Piva M, Rodriguez-Suarez E, et al.
Human mammospheres secrete hormone-regulated active extracellular vesicles.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(1):e83955 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Breast cancer is a leading cause of cancer-associated death worldwide. One of the most important prognostic factors for survival is the early detection of the disease. Recent studies indicate that extracellular vesicles may provide diagnostic information for cancer management. We demonstrate the secretion of extracellular vesicles by primary breast epithelial cells enriched for stem/progenitor cells cultured as mammospheres, in non-adherent conditions. Using a proteomic approach we identified proteins contained in these vesicles whose expression is affected by hormonal changes in the cellular environment. In addition, we showed that these vesicles are capable of promoting changes in expression levels of genes involved in epithelial-mesenchymal transition and stem cell markers. Our findings suggest that secreted extracellular vesicles could represent potential diagnostic and/or prognostic markers for breast cancer and support a role for extracellular vesicles in cancer progression.

Toffart AC, Timsit JF, Couraud S, et al.
Immunohistochemistry evaluation of biomarker expression in non-small cell lung cancer (Pharmacogenoscan study).
Lung Cancer. 2014; 83(2):182-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Platinum-based chemotherapy regimens are the standard treatment of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In this study, our objective was to identify tumor tissue protein biomarkers that might predict a benefit from these treatments.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The Pharmacogenoscan study prospectively included consecutive chemotherapy-naive NSCLC patients at any stage between 2005 and 2010 at six hospitals in the Rhône-Alpes-Auvergne region of France. Of the 537 patients in the full analysis set, 460 had a complete histological diagnosis. We used the tumor tissue samples for an immunohistochemical evaluation of eight biomarkers: ERCC1, BRCA1, p53, p27kip1, class III β-tubulin (TUBB3), Bax, Fas, and FasL. We looked for associations between these biomarkers and the disease control rate (DCR) after 2/3 cycles of platinum-based chemotherapy, progression-free survival (PFS), and overall survival (OS).
RESULTS: A tissue sample adequate for testing at least one biomarker was available for 289 patients. We found no significant association between biomarker expression levels and clinical or pathological variables; TUBB3 showed a trend toward higher expression in adenocarcinomas (P=0.005). For none of the biomarkers were significant associations found between expression level and DCR, PFS, or OS. TUBB3-negative and FasL-negative tumors showed associations of borderline significance with higher DCR.
CONCLUSION: In a large cohort of patients with predominantly advanced or metastatic NSCLC, none of eight tested immunohistochemical biomarkers predicted the chemotherapy response or survival. Our data indicate limited usefulness of protein biomarkers in metastatic NSCLC and a need for further research based on molecular signatures of greater complexity.

Emori M, Tsukahara T, Murase M, et al.
High expression of CD109 antigen regulates the phenotype of cancer stem-like cells/cancer-initiating cells in the novel epithelioid sarcoma cell line ESX and is related to poor prognosis of soft tissue sarcoma.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(12):e84187 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Epithelioid sarcoma (ES) is a relatively rare, highly malignant soft tissue sarcoma. The mainstay of treatment is resection or amputation. Currently other therapeutic options available for this disease are limited. Therefore, a novel therapeutic option needs to be developed. In the present study, we established a new human ES cell line (ESX) and analyzed the characteristics of its cancer stem-like cells/cancer-initiating cells (CSCs/CICs) based on ALDH1 activity. We demonstrated that a subpopulation of ESX cells with high ALDH1 activity (ALDH(high) cells) correlated with enhanced clonogenic ability, sphere-formation ability, and invasiveness in vitro and showed higher tumorigenicity in vivo. Next, using gene expression profiling, we identified CD109, a GPI-anchored protein upregulated in the ALDH(high) cells. CD109 mRNA was highly expressed in various sarcoma cell lines, but weakly expressed in normal adult tissues. CD109-positive cells in ESX predominantly formed spheres in culture, whereas siCD109 reduced ALDH1 expression and inhibited the cell proliferation in vitro. Subsequently, we evaluated the expression of CD109 protein in 80 clinical specimens of soft tissue sarcoma. We found a strong correlation between CD109 protein expression and the prognosis (P = 0.009). In conclusion, CD109 might be a CSC/CIC marker in epithelioid sarcoma. Moreover, CD109 is a promising prognostic biomarker and a molecular target of cancer therapy for sarcomas including ES.

Kirita K, Ishii G, Matsuwaki R, et al.
Identification of biological properties of intralymphatic tumor related to the development of lymph node metastasis in lung adenocarcinoma.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(12):e83537 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Intralymphatic tumors in the extratumoral area are considered to represent the preceding phase of lymph node metastasis. The aim of this study was to clarify the biological properties of intralymphatic tumors susceptible to the development of lymph node metastasis, with special reference to the expression of cancer initiating/stem cell (CIC/CSC) related markers in cancer cells and the number of infiltrating stromal cells.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Primary lung adenocarcinomas with lymphatic permeation in the extratumoral area were retrospectively examined (n = 107). We examined the expression levels of CIC/CSC related markers including ALDH1, OCT4, NANOG, SOX2 and Caveolin-1 in the intralymphatic cancer cells to evaluate their relationship to lymph node metastasis. Moreover, the number of infiltrating stromal cells expressing CD34, α-smooth muscle actin, and CD204 were also evaluated.
RESULTS: Among the intralymphatic tissues, low ALDH1 expression in cancer cells, high SOX2 expression in cancer cells, and a high number of CD204(+) macrophages were independent predictive factors for lymph node metastasis (P = 0.004, P = 0.008, and P = 0.028, respectively). Among these factors, only low ALDH1 expression in cancer cells was significantly correlated with the farther spreading of lymph node metastasis (mediastinal lymph node, pathological N2) (P = 0.046) and the metastatic lymph node ratio (metastatic/resected) (P = 0.028). On the other hand, in the primary tumors, ALDH1 expression in the cancer cells was not associated with lymph node metastasis. Intralymphatic cancer cells expressing low ALDH1 levels exhibited lower E-cadherin expression levels than cancer cells with high levels of ALDH1 expression (P = 0.015).
CONCLUSIONS: Intralymphatic cancer cells expressing low levels of ALDH1 and infiltrating macrophages expressing CD204 have a critical impact on lymph node metastasis. Our study also highlighted the significance of evaluating the biological properties of intralymphatic tumors for tumor metastasis.

Amaral AT, Ordóñez JL, Otero-Motta AP, et al.
Innovative therapies in Ewing Sarcoma.
Adv Anat Pathol. 2014; 21(1):44-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Ewing Sarcoma is a developmental tumor characterized by balanced chromosomal translocations and formation of new fusion genes, which are the main hallmark of this rare entity. Despite the vast knowledge regarding the molecular aspects of this rare malignancy obtained in the last few years, including the discovery of new therapeutic targets, many questions still remain open. In this review we focus on the research on targeted therapies in this malignancy, and discussed some bottlenecks related to this such as the possible role of pathologists, the availability of samples, the lack of appropriate animal models, and the resources needed to carry out preclinical and clinical research.

Varela-Rey M, Woodhoo A, Martinez-Chantar ML, et al.
Alcohol, DNA methylation, and cancer.
Alcohol Res. 2013; 35(1):25-35 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Cancer is one of the most significant diseases associated with chronic alcohol consumption, and chronic drinking is a strong risk factor for cancer, particularly of the upper aerodigestive tract, liver, colorectum, and breast. Several factors contribute to alcohol-induced cancer development (i.e., carcinogenesis), including the actions of acetaldehyde, the first and primary metabolite of ethanol, and oxidative stress. However, increasing evidence suggests that aberrant patterns of DNA methylation, an important epigenetic mechanism of transcriptional control, also could be part of the pathogenetic mechanisms that lead to alcohol-induced cancer development. The effects of alcohol on global and local DNA methylation patterns likely are mediated by its ability to interfere with the availability of the principal biological methyl donor, S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe), as well as pathways related to it. Several mechanisms may mediate the effects of alcohol on DNA methylation, including reduced folate levels and inhibition of key enzymes in one-carbon metabolism that ultimately lead to lower SAMe levels, as well as inhibition of activity and expression of enzymes involved in DNA methylation (i.e., DNA methyltransferases). Finally, variations (i.e., polymorphisms) of several genes involved in one-carbon metabolism also modulate the risk of alcohol-associated carcinogenesis.

Kreso A, van Galen P, Pedley NM, et al.
Self-renewal as a therapeutic target in human colorectal cancer.
Nat Med. 2014; 20(1):29-36 [PubMed] Related Publications
Tumor recurrence following treatment remains a major clinical challenge. Evidence from xenograft models and human trials indicates selective enrichment of cancer-initiating cells (CICs) in tumors that survive therapy. Together with recent reports showing that CIC gene signatures influence patient survival, these studies predict that targeting self-renewal, the key 'stemness' property unique to CICs, may represent a new paradigm in cancer therapy. Here we demonstrate that tumor formation and, more specifically, human colorectal CIC function are dependent on the canonical self-renewal regulator BMI-1. Downregulation of BMI-1 inhibits the ability of colorectal CICs to self-renew, resulting in the abrogation of their tumorigenic potential. Treatment of primary colorectal cancer xenografts with a small-molecule BMI-1 inhibitor resulted in colorectal CIC loss with long-term and irreversible impairment of tumor growth. Targeting the BMI-1-related self-renewal machinery provides the basis for a new therapeutic approach in the treatment of colorectal cancer.

Garulli C, Kalogris C, Pietrella L, et al.
Dorsomorphin reverses the mesenchymal phenotype of breast cancer initiating cells by inhibition of bone morphogenetic protein signaling.
Cell Signal. 2014; 26(2):352-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Increasing evidence supports the theory that tumor growth, homeostasis, and recurrence are dependent on a small subset of cells with stem cell properties, redefined cancer initiating cells (CICs) or cancer stem cells. Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are involved in cell-fate specification during embryogenesis, in the maintenance of developmental potency in adult stem cells and may contribute to sustain CIC populations in breast carcinoma. Using the mouse A17 cell model previously related to mesenchymal cancer stem cells and displaying properties of CICs, we investigated the role of BMPs in the control of breast cancer cell plasticity. We showed that an autocrine activation of BMP signaling is crucial for the maintenance of mesenchymal stem cell phenotype and tumorigenic potential of A17 cells. Pharmacological inhibition of BMP signaling cascade by Dorsomorphin resulted in the acquisition of epithelial-like traits by A17 cells, including expression of Citokeratin-18 and E-cadherin, through downregulation of Snail and Slug transcriptional factors and Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX2) expression, and in the loss of their stem-features and self-renewal ability. This phenotypic switch compromised A17 cell motility, invasiveness and in vitro tumor growth. These results reveal that BMPs are key molecules at the crossroad between stemness and cancer.

Takahashi A, Hirohashi Y, Torigoe T, et al.
Ectopically expressed variant form of sperm mitochondria-associated cysteine-rich protein augments tumorigenicity of the stem cell population of lung adenocarcinoma cells.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(11):e69095 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Cancer stem-like cells (CSCs)/cancer-initiating cells (CICs) are defined as a small population of cancer cells that have self-renewal ability, differentiation ability and high tumor-initiating ability. CSCs/CICs are resistant to cancer therapies including chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Therefore, CSCs/CICs are thought to be responsible for cancer recurrence and distant metastasis after treatment. However, the molecular mechanisms of CSCs/CICs are still elusive. In this study, we isolated CSCs/CICs as side population (SP) cells from lung carcinoma, colon carcinoma and breast carcinoma cells and analyzed the molecular mechanisms of CSCs/CICs. cDNA micro-array screening and RT-PCR analysis revealed that sperm mitochondria-associated cysteine-rich protein (SMCP) is ectopically expressed in SP cells. 5'-Rapid amplification of cDNA end (RACE) analysis revealed that the SMCP transcript in SP cells was a variant form (termed vt2) which is composed from only one exon. SMCP vt2 was detected in only cancer cells, whereas the wild-type (vt1) form of SMCP was expressed in the testis. SMCP was shown to have a role in tumor initiation by SMCP overexpression and SMCP knockdown using siRNAs in lung cancer cells. Taken together, the initiation results indicate that an ectopically expressed variant form of SMCP has a role in tumor initiation of CSCs/CICs and that the variant form of SMCP might be a novel CSC/CIC marker and a potential and promising target of CSC/CIC-targeting therapy.

Antonescu C
Round cell sarcomas beyond Ewing: emerging entities.
Histopathology. 2014; 64(1):26-37 [PubMed] Related Publications
Primitive small blue round cell tumours (SBRCT) of childhood and young adults have been problematic to diagnose and classify. Diagnosis is also complicated in cases with atypical morphology, aberrant immunoprofiles and unusual clinical presentations. Even with the increased use of ancillary techniques in archival material, such as immunohistochemistry and molecular/genetic methods, a proportion of these tumours cannot be subclassified into specific histological types. A subset of tumours resembling microscopically the Ewing sarcoma family of tumours (EFT), being composed of primitive small round cells and occurring in paediatric or young adult age groups, remain unclassified, being negative for EWSR1, SS18(SYT), DDIT3(CHOP) and FOXO1(FKHR) gene rearrangements by FISH/RT-PCR. A small number of cases sharing the undifferentiated EFT appearance have been characterized recently carrying BCOR-CCNB3 or CIC-DUX4 fusions. However, based on the somewhat limited number of cases, it remains unclear if these newly defined genetic entities belong to any of the pre-existing clinicopathological disorders or represent altogether novel conditions. This review presents the latest molecular findings related to these SBRCTs, beyond the common EWSR1-ETS fusions. Specific attention has been paid to morphological features not associated typically with classic EFT, and the value of ancillary tests that can be applied when dealing with EWSR1-negative SBRCTs is discussed.

Machado I, Cruz J, Lavernia J, et al.
Superficial EWSR1-negative undifferentiated small round cell sarcoma with CIC/DUX4 gene fusion: a new variant of Ewing-like tumors with locoregional lymph node metastasis.
Virchows Arch. 2013; 463(6):837-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
The present study describes a new case of EWSR1-negative undifferentiated sarcoma with CIC/DUX4 gene fusion. This case is similar to tumors described as primitive undifferentiated round cell sarcomas that occur mainly in the trunk and display an aggressive behavior. To our knowledge, this is the first report of such a tumor presenting locoregional lymph node metastasis. In view of previous studies that prove the existence of a particular variant of undifferentiated sarcoma with Ewing-like morphology and CIC/DUX-4 gene fusion, a search for this gene fusion in all undifferentiated round cell sarcomas should be considered if a conclusive diagnosis cannot be reached following other conventional studies. Although additional cases with more extensive follow-up studies are needed, we believe that EWSR1-negative undifferentiated small round cell sarcoma with CIC/DUX4 gene fusion should be added to the list of new sarcoma variants with the possibility of lymph node metastasis.

Domingues PH, Teodósio C, Otero Á, et al.
Association between inflammatory infiltrates and isolated monosomy 22/del(22q) in meningiomas.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(10):e74798 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Meningiomas contain highly variable levels of infiltrating tissue macrophages (TiMa) and other immune cells. In this study we investigated the potential association between the number and immunophenotype of inflammatory and other immune cells infiltrating the tumor as evaluated by multiparameter flow cytometry, and the clinico-biological, cytogenetic and gene expression profile (GEP) of 75 meningioma patients. Overall, our results showed a close association between the amount and cellular composition of the inflammatory and other immune cell infiltrates and the cytogenetic profile of the tumors. Notably, tumors with isolated monosomy 22/del(22q) showed greater numbers of TiMa, NK cells and (recently)-activated CD69(+) lymphocytes versus meningiomas with diploid and complex karyotypes. In addition, in the former cytogenetic subgroup of meningiomas, tumor-infiltrating TiMa also showed a more activated and functionally mature phenotype, as reflected by a greater fraction of CD69(+), CD63(+), CD16(+) and CD33(+) cells. GEP at the mRNA level showed a unique GEP among meningiomas with an isolated monosomy 22/del(22q) versus all other cases, which consisted of increased expression of genes involved in inflammatory/immune response, associated with an M1 TiMa phenotype. Altogether, these results suggest that loss of expression of specific genes coded in chromosome 22 (e.g. MIF) is closely associated with an increased homing and potentially also anti-tumoral effect of TiMa, which could contribute to explain the better outcome of this specific good-prognosis cytogenetic subgroup of meningiomas.

Eisenreich S, Abou-El-Ardat K, Szafranski K, et al.
Novel CIC point mutations and an exon-spanning, homozygous deletion identified in oligodendroglial tumors by a comprehensive genomic approach including transcriptome sequencing.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(9):e76623 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 10/06/2015 Related Publications
Oligodendroglial tumors form a distinct subgroup of gliomas, characterized by a better response to treatment and prolonged overall survival. Most oligodendrogliomas and also some oligoastrocytomas are characterized by a unique and typical unbalanced translocation, der(1,19), resulting in a 1p/19q co-deletion. Candidate tumor suppressor genes targeted by these losses, CIC on 19q13.2 and FUBP1 on 1p31.1, were only recently discovered. We analyzed 17 oligodendrogliomas and oligoastrocytomas by applying a comprehensive approach consisting of RNA expression analysis, DNA sequencing of CIC, FUBP1, IDH1/2, and array CGH. We confirmed three different genetic subtypes in our samples: i) the "oligodendroglial" subtype with 1p/19q co-deletion in twelve out of 17 tumors; ii) the "astrocytic" subtype in three tumors; iii) the "other" subtype in two tumors. All twelve tumors with the 1p/19q co-deletion carried the most common IDH1 R132H mutation. In seven of these tumors, we found protein-disrupting point mutations in the remaining allele of CIC, four of which are novel. One of these tumors also had a deleterious mutation in FUBP1. Only by integrating RNA expression and array CGH data, were we able to discover an exon-spanning homozygous microdeletion within the remaining allele of CIC in an additional tumor with 1p/19q co-deletion. Therefore we propose that the mutation rate might be underestimated when looking at sequence variants alone. In conclusion, the high frequency and the spectrum of CIC mutations in our 1p/19q-codeleted tumor cohort support the hypothesis that CIC acts as a tumor suppressor in these tumors, whereas FUBP1 might play only a minor role.

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