Putative biomarkers for predicting tumor sample purity based on gene expression data.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Tumor purity is the percent of cancer cells present in a sample of tumor tissue. The non-cancerous cells (immune cells, fibroblasts, etc.) have an important role in tumor biology. The ability to determine tumor purity is important to understand the roles of cancerous and non-cancerous cells in a tumor. METHODS: We applied a supervised machine learning method, XGBoost, to data from 33 TCGA tumor types to predict tumor purity using RNA-seq gene expression data. RESULTS: Across the 33 tumor types, the median correlation between observed and predicted tumor-purity ranged from 0.75 to 0.87 with small root mean square errors, suggesting that tumor purity can be accurately predicted υσινγ expression data. We further confirmed that expression levels of a ten-gene set (CSF2RB, RHOH, C1S, CCDC69, CCL22, CYTIP, POU2AF1, FGR, CCL21, and IL7R) were predictive of tumor purity regardless of tumor type. We tested whether our set of ten genes could accurately predict tumor purity of a TCGA-independent data set. We showed that expression levels from our set of ten genes were highly correlated (ρ = 0.88) with the actual observed tumor purity. CONCLUSIONS: Our analyses suggested that the ten-gene set may serve as a biomarker for tumor purity prediction using gene expression data.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Li, Y; Umbach, DM; Bingham, A; Li, Q-J; Zhuang, Y; Li, L

Published Date

  • December 27, 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 20 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 1021 -

PubMed ID

  • 31881847

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC6933652

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1471-2164

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1186/s12864-019-6412-8


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England