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Expression patterns and prognostic potential of circular RNAs in mantle cell lymphoma: a study of younger patients from the MCL2 and MCL3 clinical trials

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Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) is characterized by marked differences in outcome, emphasizing the need for strong prognostic biomarkers. Here, we explore expression patterns and prognostic relevance of circular RNAs (circRNAs), a group of endogenous non-coding RNA molecules, in MCL. We profiled the circRNA expression landscape using RNA-sequencing and explored the prognostic potential of 40 abundant circRNAs in samples from the Nordic MCL2 and MCL3 clinical trials, using NanoString nCounter Technology. We report a circRNA-based signature (circSCORE) developed in the training cohort MCL2 that is highly predictive of time to progression (TTP) and lymphoma-specific survival (LSS). The dismal outcome observed in the large proportion of patients assigned to the circSCORE high-risk group was confirmed in the independent validation cohort MCL3, both in terms of TTP (HR 3.0; P = 0.0004) and LSS (HR 3.6; P = 0.001). In Cox multiple regression analysis incorporating MIPI, Ki67 index, blastoid morphology and presence of TP53 mutations, circSCORE retained prognostic significance for TTP (HR 3.2; P = 0.01) and LSS (HR 4.6; P = 0.01). In conclusion, circRNAs are promising prognostic biomarkers in MCL and circSCORE improves identification of high-risk disease among younger patients treated with cytarabine-containing chemoimmunotherapy and autologous stem cell transplant.

Original languageEnglish
JournalLeukemia
Volume36
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)177-188
Number of pages12
ISSN0887-6924
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

Bibliographical note

© 2021. The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited.

ID: 69980237