A polygenic two-hit hypothesis for prostate cancer.


Prostate cancer is one of the most heritable cancers. Hundreds of germline polymorphisms have been linked to prostate cancer diagnosis and prognosis. Polygenic risk scores can predict genetic risk of a prostate cancer diagnosis. Although these scores inform the probability of developing a tumor, it remains unknown how germline risk influences the tumor molecular evolution. We cultivated a cohort of 1250 localized European-descent patients with germline and somatic DNA profiling. Men of European descent with higher genetic risk were diagnosed earlier and had less genomic instability and fewer driver genes mutated. Higher genetic risk was associated with better outcome. These data imply a polygenic "two-hit" model where germline risk reduces the number of somatic alterations required for tumorigenesis. These findings support further clinical studies of polygenic risk scores as inexpensive and minimally invasive adjuncts to standard risk stratification. Further studies are required to interrogate generalizability to more ancestrally and clinically diverse populations.

  • Boutros PC
  • Bristow RG
  • Corcoran NM
  • Costello AJ
  • Fox NS
  • He HH
  • Heisler LE
  • Houlahan KE
  • Hovens CM
  • Hung RJ
  • Jovelin R
  • Jung CH
  • Kishan AU
  • Kurganovs N
  • Livingstone J
  • Pope BJ
  • Sietsma Penington J
  • Waszak SM
  • Weischenfeldt J
  • Yamaguchi TN
  • Zhu H
Pub Med ID
Appears In
J Natl Cancer Inst, 2023, 115 (4)