Clustered 8-Oxo-Guanine Mutations and Oncogenic Gene Fusions in Microsatellite-Unstable Colorectal Cancer

Russell W. Madison, Xiaoju Hu, Vivek Ramanan, Zhuxuan Xu, Richard S.P. Huang, Ethan S. Sokol, Garrett M. Frampton, Alexa B. Schrock, Siraj M. Ali, Shridar Ganesan, Subhajyoti De

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PURPOSEColorectal carcinomas (CRCs) with microsatellite-instability (MSI) are enriched for oncogenic kinase fusions (KFs), including NTRK1, RET, and BRAF, but the mechanism underlying this finding is unclear.METHODSThe genomic profiles of 32,218 advanced CRC tumor specimens were analyzed to assess the fusion breakpoints of oncogenic alterations including KFs in microsatellite-stable and microsatellite-unstable CRC. Genomic contexts of such alterations were analyzed to obtain mechanistic insights.RESULTSGenomic analysis demonstrated that oncogenic fusion breakpoints in MSI tumors do not preferentially involve repetitive or low-complexity sequences. Instead, their junction regions showed pronounced guanine and cytosine bias and elevated mutation frequency at G:C contexts. Elevated mutation frequency at G:C bases in relevant introns predicted prevalence of associated oncogenic fusions in MSI CRCs. CRCs harboring mismatch repair signatures had enrichment of butyrate-producing microbial species, reported to be associated with induction of 8-oxoguanine lesions in the intestine.CONCLUSIONDetailed analysis of breakpoints in MSI-Associated KFs support a model in which inefficient repair and/or processing of microbiome-induced clustered 8-oxoguanine damage in MSI CRC contributes to the increased incidence of specific oncogenic fusions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2100477
JournalJCO Precision Oncology
StatePublished - May 1 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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