Genetic markers and phosphoprotein forms of beta-catenin pβ-Cat552 and pβ-Cat675 are prognostic biomarkers of cervical cancer

EBIOMedicine
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Scholl SM, Beal J, de Koning L, Girard E, Popovic M, de la Rochefordière A, Lecuru F, Fourchotte V, Ngo C, Floquet A, Berns EM, Kenter G, Gestraud P, von der Leyen H, Lecerf C, Puard V, Roman SR, Latouche A, Kereszt A, Balint B, Rouzier R and Kamal M.

EBioMedicine. 2020 Oct 20;61:103049

DOI: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2020.103049

Abstract

Background: Cervical cancer (CC) remains a leading cause of gynaecological cancer-related mortality world wide and constitutes the third most common malignancy in women. The RAIDs consortium (http://www.raids-fp7.eu/) conducted a prospective European study [BioRAIDs (NCT02428842)] with the objective to stratify CC patients for innovative treatments. A "metagene" of genomic markers in the PI3K pathway and epigenetic regulators had been previously associated with poor outcome [2].

Methods: To detect new, more specific, targets for treatment of patients who resist standard chemo-radiation, a high-dimensional Cox model was applied to define dominant molecular variants, copy number variations, and reverse phase protein arrays (RPPA).

Findings: Survival analysis on 89 patients with all omics data available, suggested loss-of-function (LOF) or activating molecular alterations in nine genes to be candidate biomarkers for worse prognosis in patients treated by chemo-radiation while LOF of ATRX, MED13 as well as CASP8 were associated with better prognosis. When protein expression data by RPPA were factored in, the supposedly low molecular weight and nuclear form, of beta-catenin, phosphorylated in Ser552 (pβ-Cat552), ranked highest for good prognosis, while pβ-Cat675 was associated with worse prognosis.

Interpretation: These findings call for molecularly targeted treatments involving p53, Wnt pathway, PI3K pathway, and epigenetic regulator genes. Pβ-Cat552 and pβ-Cat675 may be useful biomarkers to predict outcome to chemo-radiation, which targets the DNA repair axis.

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