Germline cancer predisposition variants and pediatric glioma: a population-based study in California.
BACKGROUND: Pediatric astrocytoma constitutes a majority of malignant pediatric brain tumors. Previous studies that investigated pediatric cancer predisposition have primarily been conducted in tertiary referral centers and focused on cancer predisposition genes. In this study, we investigated the contribution of rare germline variants to risk of malignant pediatric astrocytoma on a population level. METHODS: DNA samples were extracted from neonatal dried bloodspots from 280 pediatric astrocytoma patients (predominantly high grade) born and diagnosed in California and were subjected to whole-exome sequencing. Sequencing data were analyzed using agnostic exome-wide gene-burden testing and variant identification for putatively pathogenic variants in 175 a priori candidate cancer-predisposition genes. RESULTS: We identified 33 putatively pathogenic germline variants among 31 patients (11.1%) which were located in 24 genes largely involved in DNA repair and cell cycle control. Patients with pediatric glioblastoma were most likely to harbor putatively pathogenic germline variants (14.3%, N = 9/63). Five variants were located in tumor protein 53 (TP53), of which 4 were identified among patients with glioblastoma (6.3%, N = 4/63). The next most frequently mutated gene was neurofibromatosis 1 (NF1), in which putatively pathogenic variants were identified in 4 patients with astrocytoma not otherwise specified. Gene-burden testing also revealed that putatively pathogenic variants in TP53 were significantly associated with pediatric glioblastoma on an exome-wide level (odds ratio, 32.8, P = 8.04 × 10-7). CONCLUSION: A considerable fraction of pediatric glioma patients, especially those of higher grade, harbor a putatively pathogenic variant in a cancer predisposition gene. Some of these variants may be clinically actionable or may warrant genetic counseling.
Muskens, IS; de Smith, AJ; Zhang, C; Hansen, HM; Morimoto, L; Metayer, C; Ma, X; Walsh, KM; Wiemels, JL
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