Genetic predisposition and evolutionary traces of pediatric cancer risk: A prospective 5-year population-based genome sequencing study of children with CNS tumors

Ulrik Kristoffer Stoltze, Jon Foss-Skiftesvik*, Thomas van Overeem Hansen, Anna Byrjalsen, Astrid Sehested, David Scheie, Torben Stamm Mikkelsen, Simon Rasmussen, Mads Bak, Henrik Okkels, Michael Thude Callesen, Jane Skjøth-Rasmussen, Anne-Marie Gerdes, Kjeld Schmiegelow, René Mathiasen, Karin Wadt

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The etiology of central nervous system (CNS) tumors in children is largely unknown and population-based studies of genetic predisposition are lacking.

METHODS: In this prospective, population-based study, we performed germline whole-genome sequencing in 128 children with CNS tumors, supplemented by a systematic pedigree analysis covering 3543 close relatives.

RESULTS: Thirteen children (10%) harbored pathogenic variants in known cancer genes. These children were more likely to have medulloblastoma (OR 5.9, CI 1.6-21.2) and develop metasynchronous CNS tumors (P = 0.01). Similar carrier frequencies were seen among children with low-grade glioma (12.8%) and high-grade tumors (12.2%). Next, considering the high mortality of childhood CNS tumors throughout most of human evolution, we explored known pediatric-onset cancer genes, showing that they are more evolutionarily constrained than genes associated with risk of adult-onset malignancies (P = 5e-4) and all other genes (P = 5e-17). Based on this observation, we expanded our analysis to 2986 genes exhibiting high evolutionary constraint in 141,456 humans. This analysis identified eight directly causative loss-of-functions variants, and showed a dose-response association between degree of constraint and likelihood of pathogenicity-raising the question of the role of other highly constrained gene alterations detected.

CONCLUSIONS: Approximately 10% of pediatric CNS tumors can be attributed to rare variants in known cancer genes. Genes associated with high risk of childhood cancer show evolutionary evidence of constraint.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftNeuro-Oncology
Vol/bind25
Udgave nummer4
Sider (fra-til)761-773
Antal sider13
ISSN1522-8517
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 6 apr. 2023

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