Evaluation of cancer-associated DNA copy number events in colorectal (advanced) adenomas

Beatriz Carvalho, Begona Diosdado, Jochim S. Terhaar Sive Droste, Anne S. Bolijn, Malgorzata A. Komor, Meike de Wit, Linda J. W. Bosch, Myrthe van Burink, Evelien Dekker, Ernst J. Kuipers, Veerle M. H. Coupe, Nicole C. T. van Grieken, Remond J. A. Fijneman, Gerrit A. Meijer

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About 5% of colorectal adenomas are estimated to progress to colorectal cancer. However, it is important to identify which adenomas actually carry a high risk of progression, because these serve as intermediate endpoints, for example, in screening programs. In clinical practice, adenomas with a size of 10 mm, villous component and/or high-grade dysplasia, called advanced adenomas, are considered high risk, although solid evidence for this classification is lacking. Specific DNA copy number changes are associated with adenoma-to-carcinoma progression. We set out to determine the prevalence of cancerassociated events (CAE) in advanced and nonadvanced adenomas. DNA copy number analysis was performed on archival tissues from three independent series of, in total, 297 adenomas (120 nonadvanced and 177 advanced) using multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification or low-coverage whole-genome DNA sequencing. Alterations in two or more CAEs were considered to mark adenomas as high risk. Two or more CAEs were overall present in 25% (95% CI, 19.0-31.8) of advanced adenomas; 23% (11/48), 36% (12/33), and 23% (22/96) of the advanced adenomas in series 1, 2, and 3, respectively, and 1.7% (1/58) and 4.8% (3/62) of the nonadvanced adenomas, in series 1 and 2, respectively. The majority of advanced adenomas do not show CAEs, indicating that only a subset of these lesions is to be considered high risk. Nonadvanced adenomas have very low prevalence of CAEs, although those with CAEs should be considered high risk as well. Specific DNA copy number alterations may better reflect the true progression risk than the advanced adenoma phenotype.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-411
JournalCancer Prevention Research
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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