Although Burkitt lymphomas and follicular lymphomas both have features of germinal center B cells, they are biologically and clinically quite distinct. Here we performed whole-genome bisulfite, genome and transcriptome sequencing in 13 IG-MYC translocation-positive Burkitt lymphoma, nine BCL2 translocation-positive follicular lymphoma and four normal germinal center B cell samples. Comparison of Burkitt and follicular lymphoma samples showed differential methylation of intragenic regions that strongly correlated with expression of associated genes, for example, genes active in germinal center dark-zone and light-zone B cells. Integrative pathway analyses of regions differentially methylated in Burkitt and follicular lymphomas implicated DNA methylation as cooperating with somatic mutation of sphingosine phosphate signaling, as well as the TCF3-ID3 and SWI/SNF complexes, in a large fraction of Burkitt lymphomas. Taken together, our results demonstrate a tight connection between somatic mutation, DNA methylation and transcriptional control in key B cell pathways deregulated differentially in Burkitt lymphoma and other germinal center B cell lymphomas.
Type of Publication:
Journal article published