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Gene expression profiles of inflammatory breast cancer reveal high heterogeneity across the epithelial-hybrid-mesenchymal spectrum

Chakraborty, P and George, JT and Woodward, WA and Levine, H and Jolly, MK (2021) Gene expression profiles of inflammatory breast cancer reveal high heterogeneity across the epithelial-hybrid-mesenchymal spectrum. In: Translational Oncology, 14 (4).

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tranon.2021.101026


Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is a highly aggressive breast cancer that metastasizes largely via tumor emboli, and has a 5-year survival rate of less than 30. No unique genomic signature has yet been identified for IBC nor has any specific molecular therapeutic been developed to manage the disease. Thus, identifying gene expression signatures specific to IBC remains crucial. Here, we compare various gene lists that have been proposed as molecular footprints of IBC using different clinical samples as training and validation sets and using independent training algorithms, and determine their accuracy in identifying IBC samples in three independent datasets. We show that these gene lists have little to no mutual overlap, and have limited predictive accuracy in identifying IBC samples. Despite this inconsistency, single-sample gene set enrichment analysis (ssGSEA) of IBC samples correlate with their position on the epithelial-hybrid-mesenchymal spectrum. This positioning, together with ssGSEA scores, improves the accuracy of IBC identification across the three independent datasets. Finally, we observed that IBC samples robustly displayed a higher coefficient of variation in terms of EMT scores, as compared to non-IBC samples. Pending verification that this patient-to-patient variability extends to intratumor heterogeneity within a single patient, these results suggest that higher heterogeneity along the epithelial-hybrid-mesenchymal spectrum can be regarded to be a hallmark of IBC and a possibly useful biomarker. © 2021 The Authors

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Translational Oncology
Publisher: Neoplasia Press, Inc.
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to the Author.
Keywords: IBC, Gene expression signature, Tumor heterogeneity, Hybrid epithelial/ mesenchymal
Department/Centre: Division of Interdisciplinary Sciences > Centre for Biosystems Science and Engineering
Date Deposited: 24 Dec 2021 05:32
Last Modified: 24 Dec 2021 05:32
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/67999

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