Approximately 70% of breast cancers (BCs) express estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) and are treated with endocrine therapy. However, the effectiveness of this therapy is limited by innate or acquired resistance in approximately one-third of patients. Activating mutations in the ESR1 gene that encodes ERα promote critical resistance mechanisms. Here, we developed a high sensitivity approach based on enhanced-ice-COLD-PCR for detecting ESR1 mutations. The method produced an enrichment up to 100-fold and allowed the unambiguous detection of ESR1 mutations even when they consisted of only 0.01% of the total ESR1 allelic fraction. After COLD-PCR enrichment, methods based on next-generation sequencing or droplet-digital PCR were employed to detect and quantify ESR1 mutations. We applied the method to detect ESR1 mutations in circulating free DNA from the plasma of 56 patients with metastatic ER-positive BC. Fifteen of these patients were found to have ESR1 mutations at codons 536–538. This study demonstrates the utility of the enhanced-ice-COLD-PCR approach for simplifying and improving the detection of ESR1 tumor mutations in liquid biopsies. Because of its high sensitivity, the approach may potentially be applicable to patients with non-metastatic disease.

High-sensitivity assay for monitoring ESR1 mutations in circulating cell-free DNA of breast cancer patients receiving endocrine therapy

Lupini, Laura
Primo
;
Moretti, Anna
Secondo
;
Bassi, Cristian;Schirone, Alessio;Pedriali, Massimo;Querzoli, Patrizia;Frassoldati, Antonio
Penultimo
;
Negrini, Massimo
Ultimo
2018

Abstract

Approximately 70% of breast cancers (BCs) express estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) and are treated with endocrine therapy. However, the effectiveness of this therapy is limited by innate or acquired resistance in approximately one-third of patients. Activating mutations in the ESR1 gene that encodes ERα promote critical resistance mechanisms. Here, we developed a high sensitivity approach based on enhanced-ice-COLD-PCR for detecting ESR1 mutations. The method produced an enrichment up to 100-fold and allowed the unambiguous detection of ESR1 mutations even when they consisted of only 0.01% of the total ESR1 allelic fraction. After COLD-PCR enrichment, methods based on next-generation sequencing or droplet-digital PCR were employed to detect and quantify ESR1 mutations. We applied the method to detect ESR1 mutations in circulating free DNA from the plasma of 56 patients with metastatic ER-positive BC. Fifteen of these patients were found to have ESR1 mutations at codons 536–538. This study demonstrates the utility of the enhanced-ice-COLD-PCR approach for simplifying and improving the detection of ESR1 tumor mutations in liquid biopsies. Because of its high sensitivity, the approach may potentially be applicable to patients with non-metastatic disease.
Lupini, Laura; Moretti, Anna; Bassi, Cristian; Schirone, Alessio; Pedriali, Massimo; Querzoli, Patrizia; Roncarati, Roberta; Frassoldati, Antonio; Negrini, Massimo
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11392/2384522
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