Aneuploidy drives lethal progression in prostate cancer.

Aneuploidy, defined as chromosome gains and losses, is a hallmark of cancer. However, compared with other tumor types, extensive aneuploidy is relatively rare in prostate cancer. Thus, whether numerical chromosome aberrations dictate disease progression in prostate cancer patients is not known. Here, we report the development of a method based on whole-transcriptome profiling that allowed us to identify chromosome-arm gains and losses in 333 primary prostate tumors. In two independent cohorts (<i>n</i> = 404) followed prospectively for metastases and prostate cancer-specific death for a median of 15 years, increasing extent of tumor aneuploidy as predicted from the tumor transcriptome was strongly associated with higher risk of lethal disease. The 23% of patients whose tumors had five or more predicted chromosome-arm alterations had 5.3 times higher odds of lethal cancer (95% confidence interval, 2.2 to 13.1) than those with the same Gleason score and no predicted aneuploidy. Aneuploidy was associated with lethality even among men with high-risk Gleason score 8-to-10 tumors. These results point to a key role of aneuploidy in driving aggressive disease in primary prostate cancer.

Amon A, Gerke TA, Kantoff PW, Loda M, Mucci LA, Stopsack KH, Whittaker CA


Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2019, 116 (23)

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