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Cancer Res. 2005 Sep 1;65(17):7612-21.

Distinct genomic profiles in hereditary breast tumors identified by array-based comparative genomic hybridization.

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  • 1Department of Oncology, University Hospital, Lund, Sweden.


Mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 account for a significant proportion of hereditary breast cancers. Earlier studies have shown that inherited and sporadic tumors progress along different somatic genetic pathways and that global gene expression profiles distinguish between these groups. To determine whether genomic profiles similarly discriminate among BRCA1, BRCA2, and sporadic tumors, we established DNA copy number profiles using comparative genomic hybridization to BAC-clone microarrays providing <1 Mb resolution. Tumor DNA was obtained from BRCA1 (n = 14) and BRCA2 (n = 12) mutation carriers, as well as sporadic cases (n = 26). Overall, BRCA1 tumors had a higher frequency of copy number alterations than sporadic breast cancers (P = 0.00078). In particular, frequent losses on 4p, 4q, and 5q in BRCA1 tumors and frequent gains on 7p and 17q24 in BRCA2 tumors distinguish these from sporadic tumors. Distinct amplicons at 3q27.1-q27.3 were identified in BRCA1 tumors and at 17q23.3-q24.2 in BRCA2 tumors. A homozygous deletion on 5q12.1 was found in a BRCA1 tumor. Using a set of 169 BAC clones that detect significantly (P < 0.001) different frequencies of copy number changes in inherited and sporadic tumors, these could be discriminated into separate groups using hierarchical clustering. By comparing DNA copy number and RNA expression for genes in these regions, several candidate genes affected by up- or down-regulation were identified. Moreover, using support vector machines, we correctly classified BRCA1 and BRCA2 tumors (P < 0.0000004 and 0.00005, respectively). Further validation may prove this tumor classifier to be useful for selecting familial breast cancer cases for further mutation screening, particularly, as these data can be obtained using archival tissue.

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