CDK12 is a recurrently mutated gene in serous ovarian carcinoma, whose downregulation is associated with impaired expression of DNA damage repair genes and subsequent hypersensitivity to DNA-damaging agents and PARP1/2 inhibitors. In this study, we investigated the genomic landscape associated with CDK12 inactivation in patients with serous ovarian carcinoma. We show that CDK12 loss was consistently associated with a particular genomic instability pattern characterized by hundreds of tandem duplications of up to 10 megabases (Mb) in size. Tandem duplications were characterized by a bimodal (∼0.3 and ∼3 Mb) size distribution and overlapping microhomology at the breakpoints. This genomic instability, denoted as the CDK12 TD-plus phenotype, is remarkably distinct from other alteration patterns described in breast and ovarian cancers. The CDK12 TD-plus phenotype was associated with a greater than 10% gain in genomic content and occurred at a 3% to 4% rate in The Cancer Genome Atlas–derived and in-house cohorts of patients with serous ovarian carcinoma. Moreover, CDK12-inactivating mutations together with the TD-plus phenotype were also observed in prostate cancers. Our finding provides new insight toward deciphering the function of CDK12 in genome maintenance and oncogenesis. Cancer Res; 76(7); 1882–91. ©2016 AACR.
Note: Supplementary data for this article are available at Cancer Research Online (http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/).
The results presented here are in part based upon data generated by the TCGA Research Network: http://cancergenome.nih.gov/.
- Received August 3, 2015.
- Revision received January 7, 2016.
- Accepted January 8, 2016.
- ©2016 American Association for Cancer Research.