Cell, Volume 153, Issue 1, 17-37, 28 March 2013
Levi A. Garraway, Eric S. Lander
SummarySystematic studies of the cancer genome have exploded in recent years. These studies have revealed scores of new cancer genes, including many in processes not previously known to be causal targets in cancer. The genes affect cell signaling, chromatin, and epigenomic regulation; RNA splicing; protein homeostasis; metabolism; and lineage maturation. Still, cancer genomics is in its infancy. Much work remains to complete the mutational catalog in primary tumors and across the natural history of cancer, to connect recurrent genomic alterations to altered pathways and acquired cellular vulnerabilities, and to use this information to guide the development and application of therapies.
Science 29 March 2013: Vol. 339 no. 6127 pp. 1546-1558
Cancer Genome Landscapes
Bert Vogelstein, Nickolas Papadopoulos, Victor E. Velculescu, Shibin Zhou, Luis A. Diaz Jr., Kenneth W. Kinzler*
Over the past decade, comprehensive sequencing efforts have revealed the genomic landscapes of common forms of human cancer. For most cancer types, this landscape consists of a small number of “mountains” (genes altered in a high percentage of tumors) and a much larger number of “hills” (genes altered infrequently). To date, these studies have revealed ~140 genes that, when altered by intragenic mutations, can promote or “drive” tumorigenesis. A typical tumor contains two to eight of these “driver gene” mutations; the remaining mutations are passengers that confer no selective growth advantage. Driver genes can be classified into 12 signaling pathways that regulate three core cellular processes: cell fate, cell survival, and genome maintenance. A better understanding of these pathways is one of the most pressing needs in basic cancer research. Even now, however, our knowledge of cancer genomes is sufficient to guide the development of more effective approaches for reducing cancer morbidity and mortality.
Science 29 March 2013: Vol. 339 no. 6127 pp. 1559-1562
Diagnostic Cancer Genome Sequencing and the Contribution of Germline Variants
O. Kilpivaara,L. A. Aaltonen*
Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) is revolutionizing medical research and has the potential to serve as a powerful and cost-effective diagnostic tool in the management of cancer. We review the progress to date in the use of WGS to reveal how germline variants and mutations may be associated with cancer. We use colorectal cancer as an example of how the current level of knowledge can be translated into predictions of predisposition. We also address challenges in the clinical implementation of the variants in germline DNA identified through cancer genome sequencing. We call for the international development of standards to facilitate the clinical use of germline information arising from diagnostic cancer genome sequencing.