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Genetic alterations driving metastatic colony formation are acquired outside of the primary tumour in melanoma

: Werner-Klein, Melanie; Scheitler, Sebastian; Hoffmann, Martin; Hodak, Isabelle; Dietz, Klaus; Lehnert, Petra; Naimer, Veronika; Polzer, Bernhard; Treitschke, Steffi; Werno, Christian; Markiewicz, Aleksandra; Weidele, Kathrin; Czyz, Zbigniew; Hohenleutner, Ulrich; Hafner, Christian; Haferkamp, Sebastian; Berneburg, Mark; Rümmele, Petra; Ulmer, Anja; Klein, Christoph A.

Volltext urn:nbn:de:0011-n-4975624 (4.5 MByte PDF)
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Erstellt am: 3.7.2018

Nature Communications 9 (2018), Art. 595, 17 S.
ISSN: 2041-1723
Zeitschriftenaufsatz, Elektronische Publikation
Fraunhofer ITEM ()
comparative genomic hybridization; equivalence; minimal residual cancer; cell sequencing data; cutaneous melanoma; breast cancer; mutation frequency; oncogenic mutations; early dissemination; branched evolution

Mouse models indicate that metastatic dissemination occurs extremely early; however, the timing in human cancers is unknown. We therefore determined the time point of metastatic seeding relative to tumour thickness and genomic alterations in melanoma. Here, we find that lymphatic dissemination occurs shortly after dermal invasion of the primary lesion at a median thickness of ~0.5 mm and that typical driver changes, including BRAF mutation and gained or lost regions comprising genes like MET or CDKNA2, are acquired within the lymph node at the time of colony formation. These changes define a colonisation signature that was linked to xenograft formation in immunodeficient mice and death from melanoma. Thus, melanoma cells leave primary tumours early and evolve at different sites in parallel. We propose a model of metastatic melanoma dormancy, evolution and colonisation that will inform direct monitoring of adjuvant therapy targets.