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  • 1
    Keywords: GENES ; MOUSE ; SUBGROUPS ; GLIOBLASTOMA ; INTRINSIC PONTINE GLIOMAS ; HISTONE H3.3 ; FIBRODYSPLASIA OSSIFICANS PROGRESSIVA ; BMP RECEPTOR ; I RECEPTOR ; ALK2
    Abstract: Pediatric midline high-grade astrocytomas (mHGAs) are incurable with few treatment targets identified. Most tumors harbor mutations encoding p.Lys27Met in histone H3 variants. In 40 treatment-naive mHGAs, 39 analyzed by whole-exome sequencing, we find additional somatic mutations specific to tumor location. Gain-of-function mutations in ACVR1 occur in tumors of the pons in conjunction with histone H3.1 p.Lys27Met substitution, whereas FGFR1 mutations or fusions occur in thalamic tumors associated with histone H3.3 p.Lys27Met substitution. Hyperactivation of the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-ACVR1 developmental pathway in mHGAs harboring ACVR1 mutations led to increased levels of phosphorylated SMAD1, SMAD5 and SMAD8 and upregulation of BMP downstream early-response genes in tumor cells. Global DNA methylation profiles were significantly associated with the p.Lys27Met alteration, regardless of the mutant histone H3 variant and irrespective of tumor location, supporting the role of this substitution in driving the epigenetic phenotype. This work considerably expands the number of potential treatment targets and further justifies pretreatment biopsy in pediatric mHGA as a means to orient therapeutic efforts in this disease.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24705250
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  • 2
    Abstract: Pediatric neuro-oncology has undergone an exciting and dramatic transformation during the past 5 years. This article summarizes data from collaborative group and institutional trials that have advanced the science of pediatric brain tumors and survival of patients with these tumors. Advanced genomic analysis of the entire spectrum of pediatric brain tumors has heralded an era in which stakeholders in the pediatric neuro-oncology community are being challenged to reconsider their current research and diagnostic and treatment strategies. The incorporation of this new information into the next-generation treatment protocols will unleash new challenges. This review succinctly summarizes the key advances in our understanding of the common pediatric brain tumors (ie, medulloblastoma, low- and high-grade gliomas, diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, and ependymoma) and some selected rare tumors (ie, atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumor and CNS primitive neuroectodermal tumor). The potential impact of this new information on future clinical protocols also is discussed. Cutting-edge genomics technologies and the information gained from such studies are facilitating the identification of molecularly defined subgroups within patients with particular pediatric brain tumors. The number of evaluable patients in each subgroup is small, particularly in the subgroups of rare diseases. Therefore, international collaboration will be crucial to draw meaningful conclusions about novel approaches to treating pediatric brain tumors.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 26304884
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  • 3
    Abstract: For the past decade, it has been recognized that pediatric low-grade gliomas (LGGs) and glial-neuronal tumors carry distinct molecular alterations with resultant aberrant intracellular signaling in the Ras-mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway. The conclusions and recommendations of a consensus conference of how best to integrate the growing body of molecular genetic information into tumor classifications and, more importantly, for future treatment of pediatric LGGs are summarized here. There is uniform agreement that molecular characterization must be incorporated into classification and is increasingly critical for appropriate management. Molecular-targeted therapies should be integrated expeditiously, but also carefully into the management of these tumors and success measured not only by radiographic responses or stability, but also by functional outcomes. These trials need to be carried out with the caveat that the long-term impact of molecularly targeted therapy on the developing nervous system, especially with long duration treatment, is essentially unknown.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 27683733
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  • 4
    Abstract: Despite the fact that they are not typically life-threatening, low-grade gliomas (LGGs) remain a significant clinical challenge in pediatric neurooncology due to co-morbidities associated with these tumors and/or their treatments, and their propensity to multiply recur. LGGs, in total the most common brain tumors arising in childhood, can often become a chronic problem requiring decades of management. The 2nd international consensus conference on pediatric low-grade gliomas held in Padua, Italy in 2016, was convened in an attempt to advance the pace of translating biological discoveries on LGGs into meaningful clinical benefit. Topics discussed included: the implications the our growing biological understanding of the genomics underlying these tumors; the assessment of the model systems available; the implications of the molecular and histopathologic differences between adult and pediatric diffuse gliomas; and steps needed to expedite targeted-therapy into late-stage clinical trials for newly diagnosed patients. Methods for the diagnostic assessment of alterations in the Ras/MAPK pathway, typical for these tumors, were also considered. While the overall tone was positive, with a consensus that progress is being and will continue to be made, the scale of the challenge presented by this complex group of tumors was also acknowledged. The conclusions and recommendations of the meeting panel are provided here as an outline of current thinking and a basis for further discussion.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 29016845
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  • 5
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: Young children with medulloblastoma have a poor overall survival compared with older children, due to use of radiation-sparing therapy in young children. Radiotherapy is omitted or reduced in these young patients to spare them from debilitating long-term side-effects. We aimed to estimate event-free survival and define the molecular characteristics associated with progression-free survival in young patients with medulloblastoma using a risk-stratified treatment strategy designed to defer, reduce, or delay radiation exposure. METHODS: In this multicentre, phase 2 trial, we enrolled children younger than 3 years with newly diagnosed medulloblastoma at six centres in the USA and Australia. Children aged 3-5 years with newly diagnosed, non-metastatic medulloblastoma without any high-risk features were also eligible. Eligible patients were required to start therapy within 31 days from definitive surgery, had a Lansky performance score of at least 30, and did not receive previous radiotherapy or chemotherapy. Patients were stratified postoperatively by clinical and histological criteria into low-risk, intermediate-risk, and high-risk treatment groups. All patients received identical induction chemotherapy (methotrexate, vincristine, cisplatin, and cyclophosphamide), with high-risk patients also receiving an additional five doses of vinblastine. Induction was followed by risk-adapted consolidation therapy: low-risk patients received cyclophosphamide (1500 mg/m(2) on day 1), etoposide (100 mg/m(2) on days 1 and 2), and carboplatin (area under the curve 5 mg/mL per min on day 2) for two 4-week cycles; intermediate-risk patients received focal radiation therapy (54 Gy with a clinical target volume of 5 mm over 6 weeks) to the tumour bed; and high-risk patients received chemotherapy with targeted intravenous topotecan (area under the curve 120-160 ng-h/mL intravenously on days 1-5) and cyclophosphamide (600 mg/m(2) intravenously on days 1-5). After consolidation, all patients received maintenance chemotherapy with cyclophosphamide, topotecan, and erlotinib. The coprimary endpoints were event-free survival and patterns of methylation profiling associated with progression-free survival. Outcome and safety analyses were per protocol (all patients who received at least one dose of induction chemotherapy); biological analyses included all patients with tissue available for methylation profiling. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00602667, and was closed to accrual on April 19, 2017. FINDINGS: Between Nov 27, 2007, and April 19, 2017, we enrolled 81 patients with histologically confirmed medulloblastoma. Accrual to the low-risk group was suspended after an interim analysis on Dec 2, 2015, when the 1-year event-free survival was estimated to be below the stopping rule boundary. After a median follow-up of 5.5 years (IQR 2.7-7.3), 5-year event-free survival was 31.3% (95% CI 19.3-43.3) for the whole cohort, 55.3% (95% CI 33.3-77.3) in the low-risk cohort (n=23) versus 24.6% (3.6-45.6) in the intermediate-risk cohort (n=32; hazard ratio 2.50, 95% CI 1.19-5.27; p=0.016) and 16.7% (3.4-30.0) in the high-risk cohort (n=26; 3.55, 1.66-7.59; p=0.0011; overall p=0.0021). 5-year progression-free survival by methylation subgroup was 51.1% (95% CI 34.6-67.6) in the sonic hedgehog (SHH) subgroup (n=42), 8.3% (95% CI 0.0-24.0%) in the group 3 subgroup (n=24), and 13.3% (95% CI 0.0-37.6%) in the group 4 subgroup (n=10). Within the SHH subgroup, two distinct methylation subtypes were identified and named iSHH-I and iSHH-II. 5-year progression-free survival was 27.8% (95% CI 9.0-46.6; n=21) for iSHH-I and 75.4% (55.0-95.8; n=21) for iSHH-II. The most common adverse events were grade 3-4 febrile neutropenia (48 patients [59%]), neutropenia (21 [26%]), infection with neutropenia (20 [25%]), leucopenia (15 [19%]), vomiting (15 [19%]), and anorexia (13 [16%]). No treatment-related deaths occurred. INTERPRETATION: The risk-adap
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 29778738
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  • 6
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: Medulloblastoma is associated with rare hereditary cancer predisposition syndromes; however, consensus medulloblastoma predisposition genes have not been defined and screening guidelines for genetic counselling and testing for paediatric patients are not available. We aimed to assess and define these genes to provide evidence for future screening guidelines. METHODS: In this international, multicentre study, we analysed patients with medulloblastoma from retrospective cohorts (International Cancer Genome Consortium [ICGC] PedBrain, Medulloblastoma Advanced Genomics International Consortium [MAGIC], and the CEFALO series) and from prospective cohorts from four clinical studies (SJMB03, SJMB12, SJYC07, and I-HIT-MED). Whole-genome sequences and exome sequences from blood and tumour samples were analysed for rare damaging germline mutations in cancer predisposition genes. DNA methylation profiling was done to determine consensus molecular subgroups: WNT (MBWNT), SHH (MBSHH), group 3 (MBGroup3), and group 4 (MBGroup4). Medulloblastoma predisposition genes were predicted on the basis of rare variant burden tests against controls without a cancer diagnosis from the Exome Aggregation Consortium (ExAC). Previously defined somatic mutational signatures were used to further classify medulloblastoma genomes into two groups, a clock-like group (signatures 1 and 5) and a homologous recombination repair deficiency-like group (signatures 3 and 8), and chromothripsis was investigated using previously established criteria. Progression-free survival and overall survival were modelled for patients with a genetic predisposition to medulloblastoma. FINDINGS: We included a total of 1022 patients with medulloblastoma from the retrospective cohorts (n=673) and the four prospective studies (n=349), from whom blood samples (n=1022) and tumour samples (n=800) were analysed for germline mutations in 110 cancer predisposition genes. In our rare variant burden analysis, we compared these against 53 105 sequenced controls from ExAC and identified APC, BRCA2, PALB2, PTCH1, SUFU, and TP53 as consensus medulloblastoma predisposition genes according to our rare variant burden analysis and estimated that germline mutations accounted for 6% of medulloblastoma diagnoses in the retrospective cohort. The prevalence of genetic predispositions differed between molecular subgroups in the retrospective cohort and was highest for patients in the MBSHH subgroup (20% in the retrospective cohort). These estimates were replicated in the prospective clinical cohort (germline mutations accounted for 5% of medulloblastoma diagnoses, with the highest prevalence [14%] in the MBSHH subgroup). Patients with germline APC mutations developed MBWNT and accounted for most (five [71%] of seven) cases of MBWNT that had no somatic CTNNB1 exon 3 mutations. Patients with germline mutations in SUFU and PTCH1 mostly developed infant MBSHH. Germline TP53 mutations presented only in childhood patients in the MBSHH subgroup and explained more than half (eight [57%] of 14) of all chromothripsis events in this subgroup. Germline mutations in PALB2 and BRCA2 were observed across the MBSHH, MBGroup3, and MBGroup4 molecular subgroups and were associated with mutational signatures typical of homologous recombination repair deficiency. In patients with a genetic predisposition to medulloblastoma, 5-year progression-free survival was 52% (95% CI 40-69) and 5-year overall survival was 65% (95% CI 52-81); these survival estimates differed significantly across patients with germline mutations in different medulloblastoma predisposition genes. INTERPRETATION: Genetic counselling and testing should be used as a standard-of-care procedure in patients with MBWNT and MBSHH because these patients have the highest prevalence of damaging germline mutations in known cancer predisposition genes. We propose criteria for routine genetic screening for patients with medulloblastoma based on clinical and mole
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 29753700
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