(19)
(11)EP 3 047 037 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
27.11.2019 Bulletin 2019/48

(21)Application number: 14845384.8

(22)Date of filing:  19.09.2014
(51)Int. Cl.: 
C12Q 1/6886  (2018.01)
(86)International application number:
PCT/US2014/056629
(87)International publication number:
WO 2015/042446 (26.03.2015 Gazette  2015/12)

(54)

METHOD FOR THE ANALYSIS OF RADIOSENSITIVITY

VERFAHREN ZUR ANALYSE VON STRAHLENEMPFINDLICHKEIT

MÉTHODE POUR L'ANALYSE DE LA RADIOSENSIBILITÉ


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 20.09.2013 US 201361880717 P

(43)Date of publication of application:
27.07.2016 Bulletin 2016/30

(73)Proprietor: The Regents of The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109 (US)

(72)Inventors:
  • SPEERS, Corey
    Hamburg Twp. Michigan 48189 (US)
  • FENG, Felix
    Ann Arbor Michigan 48109-5010 (US)
  • PIERCE, Lori
    Ann Arbor Michigan 48109-5936 (US)
  • ZHAO, Shuang
    Ann Arbor Michigan 48105 (US)

(74)Representative: Glawe, Delfs, Moll 
Partnerschaft mbB von Patent- und Rechtsanwälten Postfach 13 03 91
20103 Hamburg
20103 Hamburg (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
WO-A2-2009/036388
WO-A2-2013/132354
US-A1- 2009 163 435
WO-A2-2009/036388
US-A1- 2008 234 946
  
  • "[HG-U133A] Affymetrix Human Genome U133A Array", GEO,, 11 March 2002 (2002-03-11), XP002527544,
  • S. A. ESCHRICH ET AL: "Validation of a Radiosensitivity Molecular Signature in Breast Cancer", CLINICAL CANCER RESEARCH, vol. 18, no. 18, 25 July 2012 (2012-07-25) , pages 5134-5143, XP055352422, US ISSN: 1078-0432, DOI: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-12-0891
  • HAN SANG KIM ET AL: "Identification of a radiosensitivity signature using integrative metaanalysis of published microarray data for NCI-60 cancer cells", BMC GENOMICS, BIOMED CENTRAL LTD, LONDON, UK, vol. 13, no. 1, 30 July 2012 (2012-07-30), page 348, XP021106691, ISSN: 1471-2164, DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-13-348
  
Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


Description

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION



[0001] The present application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application Serial No. 61/880,717, filed September 20, 2013.

FIELD



[0002] Provided herein are compositions and methods for the analysis of radiosensitivity, to, for example, assess the efficacy or select therapeutic agents for the treatment and/or diagnosis of cancer.

BACKGROUND



[0003] Multiple randomized clinical trials have demonstrated the benefit of adjuvant radiation therapy after breast conserving surgery. However, it is clear that current adjuvant radiotherapy approaches result in overtreatment of many patients who are unlikely to recur after surgery alone. Conversely, there are subsets of patients who, despite standard multimodality treatment including radiation, will develop local recurrence. Thus, there is a clear need to identify these two populations: those who are currently over-treated, and those who need further treatment intensification.

[0004] Gene signatures that were identified and validated in patient cohorts and proved to be able to discriminate radiosensitive patients are known from Escherich et al. (2012), Clinical Cancer Research 18(18): 5134-5143 and WO 2013/132354 A2. For example, WO 2013/132354 A2 discloses a method of selecting a subject with breast cancer for treatment with a particular therapy, comprising: detecting the level of expression of one or more genes selected from the group consisting of HLA-DQA, RGS1, DNALII, IGKC, ADHIB, hCG2023290, OR8G2, C3orf29, ZCCHC17, RTCD1, VANGL1, DERP6, FLJ37970, and RAF1 in a sample from a subject diagnosed with breast cancer; wherein said treatment course of action is administration of post mastectomy radiation. The claimed subject-matter differ from said prior art, inter alia, in the specific gene signature.

SUMMARY



[0005] The invention is set out in the appended claims. The embodiments of the description which do not fall within the scope of said claims are provided for illustrative purposes only and do not form part of the present invention. Provided herein are compositions and methods for the analysis of radiosensitivity, to, for example, assess the efficacy or select therapeutic agents for the treatment and/or diagnosis of cancer.

[0006] Provided herein are compositions, methods, or systems that assess the expression of two or more markers described in Table 1, 2, 5 or 6 for the selection of therapy for a subject.

[0007] The present invention provides methods for assessing the radiosensitivity of a cell comprising detecting expression of a plurality genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance as defined in the claims. The genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance are the genes from Table 6. In some embodiments, gene expression is detected by measuring mRNA levels. In some embodiments, gene expression is detected by measuring protein levels. In some embodiments, the expression of plurality genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance are differentially weighted to determine the radiosensitivity of a cell. The cell is a breast cancer cell.

[0008] In some embodiments, the present invention provides methods of determining a treatment course for a subject suffering from breast cancer comprising: (a) assessing the radiosensitivity of the cancer by the method of claim 1; and (b) selecting a suitable treatment course based on the radiosensitivity of the cancer.

[0009] In some embodiments, the present invention provides the use of a kit as defined in the claims. The description further discloses kits for assessing radiosensitivity comprising reagents for detecting expression of a plurality genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance, including that, the genes indicative of radiosensitivity are selected from Table 1, that the genes indicative of radioresistance are selected from Table 2, that the genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance are selected from Table 5, or that the genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance are selected from Table 6. In some embodiments, reagents are selected from antibodies, aptamers, nucleic acid probes, and primers.

[0010] The description further discloses methods for assessing the radiosensitivity of a population of cells within a subject, comprising: (a) receiving a sample obtained from the population of cells; (b) quantitating the level of expression of a one or more genes indicative or radiosensitivity in said sample; and (c) quantitating the level of expression of a one or more genes indicative or radioresistance in said sample. In some embodiments, methods further provide (d) using a computer-based analysis program is used to convert the data generated in steps (b) and (c) into an radiosensitivity assessment for the population of cells from which the sample was obtained. In some embodiments, methods further provide (e) generating a report characterizing the sample as having been obtained from a radiosensitivity of a population of cells within a subject.

[0011] The description further discloses methods for assessing the radiosensitivity of a population of cells within a subject, comprising: (a) obtaining a sample obtained from the population of cells; (b) having the sample analyzed to quantitate the level of expression of a one or more genes indicative or radiosensitivity in said sample; (c) having the sample analyzed to quantitate the level of expression of a one or more genes indicative or radioresistance in said sample; and (d) receiving a report related to the radiosensitivity of the population of cells. In some embodiments, said report is generated using a computer-based analysis program is used to convert the data generated in steps (b) and (c) into a radiosensitivity assessment for the population of cells from which the sample was obtained. In some said report characterizes the sample as having been obtained from a radiosensitivity population of cells within a subject.

[0012] In some embodiments, provided herein are the use of kits as defined in the claims. The description further discloses kits for conducting assays to identify the expression of the markers. The kits may comprise reagents (e.g., probes, primers, buffers, etc.) and other components (e.g., software, instructions, data sets) necessary, sufficient, or useful for conducting any of the methods described herein. The kits may provide reagents in multiplex format for the simultaneous analysis of multiple markers (e.g., on one reaction mixture, container, or devices (e.g., multi-well card or plate)). The kits may comprise, may consist, or may consist essentially of the reagents needed to assess the plurality of markers to provide a desired diagnostic result. For example, for cost-efficiency, such kits do not include reagents (e.g., primers and probes) for analyzing other markers (e.g., rather than using a gene chip to assess expression of all expression markers, the kit only detects the specific markers needed to make the diagnostic assessment).

[0013] Also provided herein are reaction mixtures comprising sample nucleic acid or proteins and reagents (e.g., from any of the above kits or methods) for assessing expression of a marker from Table 1, Table 2, Table 5, and/or Table 6. The reaction mixtures may be generated by conducting a method as described herein.

[0014] A software or hardware component may receive the results of multiple assays and/or markers and determines a single value result to report to a user that indicates a conclusion (e.g., cancer risk, drug efficacy, prognosis, etc.). Related embodiments calculate a risk factor based on a mathematical combination (e.g., a weighted combination, a linear combination) of the results from multiple assays and/or markers.

[0015] A storage medium and memory components may be comprised. Memory components (e.g., volatile and/or nonvolatile memory) find use in storing instructions (e.g., an embodiment of a process as provided herein) and/or data (e.g., a work piece such as methylation measurements, sequences, and statistical descriptions associated therewith). The present description also relates to systems also comprising one or more of a CPU, a graphics card, and a user interface (e.g., comprising an output device such as display and an input device such as a keyboard).

[0016] Programmable machines associated with the technology comprise conventional extant technologies and technologies in development or yet to be developed (e.g., a quantum computer, a chemical computer, a DNA computer, an optical computer, a spintronics based computer, etc.).

[0017] The technology may comprise a wired (e.g., metallic cable, fiber optic) or wireless transmission medium for transmitting data. For example, data transmission over a network (e.g., a local area network (LAN), a wide area network (WAN), an ad-hoc network, the internet, etc.) or programmable machines are present on such a network as peers and the programmable machines may have a client/server relationship.

[0018] Data may be stored on a computer-readable storage medium such as a hard disk, flash memory, optical media, a floppy disk, etc.

[0019] The technology provided herein may be associated with a plurality of programmable devices that operate in concert to perform a method as described herein. For example, a plurality of computers (e.g., connected by a network) may work in parallel to collect and process data, e.g., in an implementation of cluster computing or grid computing or some other distributed computer architecture that relies on complete computers (with onboard CPUs, storage, power supplies, network interfaces, etc.) connected to a network (private, public, or the internet) by a conventional network interface, such as Ethernet, fiber optic, or by a wireless network technology.

[0020] For example a computer that includes a computer-readable medium may be provided. This includes a random access memory (RAM) coupled to a processor. The processor executes computer-executable program instructions stored in memory. Such processors may include a microprocessor, an ASIC, a state machine, or other processor, and can be any of a number of computer processors, such as processors from Intel Corporation of Santa Clara, California and Motorola Corporation of Schaumburg, Illinois. Such processors include, or may be in communication with, media, for example computer-readable media, which stores instructions that, when executed by the processor, cause the processor to perform the steps described herein.

[0021] Examples of computer-readable media include, but are not limited to, an electronic, optical, magnetic, or other storage or transmission device capable of providing a processor with computer-readable instructions. Other examples of suitable media include, but are not limited to, a floppy disk, CD-ROM, DVD, magnetic disk, memory chip, ROM, RAM, an ASIC, a configured processor, all optical media, all magnetic tape or other magnetic media, or any other medium from which a computer processor can read instructions. Also, various other forms of computer-readable media may transmit or carry instructions to a computer, including a router, private or public network, or other transmission device or channel, both wired and wireless. The instructions may comprise code from any suitable computer-programming language, including, for example, C, C++, C#, Visual Basic, Java, Python, Perl, and JavaScript.

[0022] Computers are connected in some embodiments to a network. Computers may also include a number of external or internal devices such as a mouse, a CD-ROM, DVD, a keyboard, a display, or other input or output devices. Examples of computers are personal computers, digital assistants, personal digital assistants, cellular phones, mobile phones, smart phones, pagers, digital tablets, laptop computers, internet appliances, and other processor-based devices. In general, the computers related to aspects of the technology provided herein may be any type of processor-based platform that operates on any operating system, such as Microsoft Windows, Linux, UNIX, Mac OS X, etc., capable of supporting one or more programs comprising the technology provided herein. A personal computer executing other application programs (e.g., applications) may be comprised. The applications can be contained in memory and can include, for example, a word processing application, a spreadsheet application, an email application, an instant messenger application, a presentation application, an Internet browser application, a calendar/organizer application, and any other application capable of being executed by a client device.

[0023] All such components, computers, and systems described herein as associated with the technology may be logical or virtual.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS



[0024] 

Figure 1 shows clonogenic survival assays assessing the baseline radiation sensitivity in a panel of 21 breast cancer cell lines. Clonogenic survival assessing Dbar (A) and surviving fraction after 2 Gy (B) identifies a range of radiation sensitivity in human breast cancer cell lines (SF 77%-17%) with no significant correlation to the intrinsic breast cancer subtypes. Grouping of breast cancer cell lines into resistant, moderately resistant, and radiation sensitive cell lines shows a mixture of each intrinsic subtype in these categories.

Figure 2 depicts unsupervised clustering demonstrating that the radiation response phenotype is independent to and not correlated with the intrinsic subtypes of human breast cancer.

Figure 3 shows validation of gene overexpression in breast cancer cell lines by assessing protein and RNA expression.

Figure 4 shows clonogenic survival assays of several genes identified as being overexpressed in the radioresistant signature are involved in radioresistance.

Figure 5 shows graphs depicting cells growth assays for breast cancer cell lines treated with radiation.

Figure 6 shows an overview of the radiation response signature development strategy utilizing intrinsic radiation sensitivity of human breast cancer cell lines.

Figure 7A-D shows results relating to clonogenic survival assays performed to assess the baseline radiation sensitivity in a panel of 16 breast cancer cell lines. Clonogenic survival assessing the surviving fraction of cells after exposure to a standard fraction of radiation (SF-2Gy) (A) identifies a range of radiation sensitivity in human breast cancer cell lines (SF-2 Gy 77%-17%). Box and whisper plot depicting minimum and maximum SF-2Gy values. ANOVA testing shows no significant difference in radiosensitivity between the intrinsic breast cancer subtypes (B). Grouping of breast cancer cell lines into resistant, moderately resistant, and radiation sensitive cell lines shows a mixture of each intrinsic subtype in these categories. The radiation sensitivity signature was generated by selecting genes whose expression was significantly correlated with intrinsic radiation sensitivity (SF-2Gy) with a 2 fold difference in expression with representative correlation scatter plot depicted for the gene ATM (C). Based on these selection criteria, 147 genes were identified as being correlated with radiation sensitivity, with the expression level of 80 genes correlated with radiation resistance and 67 genes negatively correlated with radiation resistance. A heatmap depicting relative gene expression of these 147 genes ordered by the intrinsic radiosensitivity of the 16 breast cancer cell lines is depicted (D).

Figure 8 shows unsupervised hierarchical clustering using the gene expression of the 147 differentially expressed genes accurately clusters the radiation resistant cell lines (SF2 Gy >45%) from the radiation sensitive cell lines (SF 2 Gy <45%).

Figure 9A-D shows validation of gene overexpression in breast cancer cell lines by assessing protein and RNA expression. The expression of selected genes identified in the array profiling were validated as being more highly expressed in the radiation resistant cell lines compared to the radiation sensitive cell lines by western blotting (A). Expression data for 6 representative genes (TACC1, DDR2, RND3, DTL, ATM, RAD51) from a panel or radiation resistant and radiation sensitive breast cancer cell lines are shown (B). Data are represented as mean ± SEM. Clonogenic survival assays validates several genes identified as being overexpressed in the radioresistant signature are involved in radioresistance. Knockdown experiments with siRNA designed against TACC1, a gene identified in the radioresistance signature, effectively knocks down the expression of TACC1 (C). Clonogenic survival assays in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells after siRNA knockdown of TACC1 show significant sensitization of these cells to ionizing radiation with an enhancement ratio of 1.1-1.4 (D).

Figure 10 shows gene set enrichment and gene ontology enrichment analysis demonstrates that the radiation sensitivity signature is significantly enriched for concepts related to radiation response including DNA repair, cell cycle, and DNA damage response.

Figure 11A-D shows receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves and Kaplan-Meier survival analysis in training and cross-validation dataset with univariable and multivariable analysis. AUC values from the training set show perfect performance (A) and Kaplan-Meier analysis demonstrates complete separation of the curves between those predicted to recur and not predicted to recur (B). Univariable (C) and multivariable (D) analysis identifies the radiation signature score as the variable most strongly associated with local recurrence.

Figure 12A-D shows receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves and Kaplan-Meier survival estimate analysis in validation dataset with univariable and multivariable analysis. AUC values from the validation dataset show the radiation signature score outperforms every other clinical and pathologic parameter (A). Kaplan-Meier survival estimate analysis and hazard ratios are depicted in panel B. Univariable (C) and multivariable (D) analysis identifies the radiation signature score as the variable most strongly associated with local recurrence and overall survival.

Figure 13A-D shows performance of the radiation sensitivity signature with the previously published radiation sensitivity signature in the training dataset. Kaplan-Meier local recurrence survival estimates in our signature (A) and the previously published signature (B). ROC curves between the radiation sensitivity signature (C) and the previously published signature (D).

Figure 14A-C shows performance of the radiation sensitivity signature with the previously published radiation sensitivity signature in the validations dataset. Kaplan-Meier local recurrence, metastasis-free, and overall survival estimates in the radiation sensitivity signature (A) and the previously published signature (B). ROC curves predicting local recurrence between the radiation sensitivity signature and the previously published signature (C).


DETAILED DESCRIPTION



[0025] The invention is set out in the appended claims. The embodiments of the description which do not fall within the scope of said claims are provided for illustrative purposes only and do not form part of the present invention. Provided herein are compositions and methods for the analysis of radiosensitivity, to, for example, assess the efficacy or select therapeutic agents for the treatment and/or diagnosis of cancer.

[0026] In this detailed description, for purposes of explanation, numerous specific details are set forth to provide a thorough understanding of the invention as defined in the claims. One skilled in the art will appreciate, however, that these various embodiments may be practiced with or without these specific details. In other instances, structures and devices are shown in block diagram form. Furthermore, one skilled in the art can readily appreciate that the specific sequences in which methods are presented and performed are illustrative.

[0027] . Unless defined otherwise, all technical and scientific terms used herein have the same meaning as is commonly understood by one of ordinary skill in the art to which the various embodiments described herein belongs. When definitions of terms in incorporated references appear to differ from the definitions provided in the present teachings, the definition provided in the present teachings shall control.

Definitions



[0028] To facilitate an understanding of the present technology, a number of terms and phrases are defined below. Additional definitions are set forth throughout the detailed description.

[0029] Throughout the specification and claims, the following terms take the meanings explicitly associated herein, unless the context clearly dictates otherwise. The phrase "in one embodiment" as used herein does not necessarily refer to the same embodiment, though it may. Furthermore, the phrase "in another embodiment" as used herein does not necessarily refer to a different embodiment, although it may. Thus, as described below, various embodiments of the invention may be readily combined, without departing from the scope or spirit of the invention.

[0030] In addition, as used herein, the term "or" is an inclusive "or" operator and is equivalent to the term "and/or" unless the context clearly dictates otherwise. The term "based on" is not exclusive and allows for being based on additional factors not described, unless the context clearly dictates otherwise. In addition, throughout the specification, the meaning of "a", "an", and "the" include plural references. The meaning of "in" includes "in" and "on."

[0031] As used herein, a "nucleic acid" or "nucleic acid molecule" generally refers to any ribonucleic acid or deoxyribonucleic acid, which may be unmodified or modified DNA or RNA. "Nucleic acids" include, without limitation, single- and double-stranded nucleic acids. As used herein, the term "nucleic acid" also includes DNA as described above that contains one or more modified bases. Thus, DNA with a backbone modified for stability or for other reasons is a "nucleic acid". The term "nucleic acid" as it is used herein embraces such chemically, enzymatically, or metabolically modified forms of nucleic acids, as well as the chemical forms of DNA characteristic of viruses and cells, including for example, simple and complex cells.

[0032] The terms "oligonucleotide" or "polynucleotide" or "nucleotide" or "nucleic acid" refer to a molecule having two or more deoxyribonucleotides or ribonucleotides, preferably more than three, and usually more than ten. The exact size will depend on many factors, which in turn depends on the ultimate function or use of the oligonucleotide. The oligonucleotide may be generated in any manner, including chemical synthesis, DNA replication, reverse transcription, or a combination thereof. Typical deoxyribonucleotides for DNA are thymine, adenine, cytosine, and guanine. Typical ribonucleotides for RNA are uracil, adenine, cytosine, and guanine.

[0033] As used herein, the terms "locus" or "region" of a nucleic acid refer to a subregion of a nucleic acid, e.g., a gene on a chromosome, a single nucleotide, a CpG island, etc.

[0034] The terms "complementary" and "complementarity" refer to nucleotides (e.g., 1 nucleotide) or polynucleotides (e.g., a sequence of nucleotides) related by the base-pairing rules. For example, the sequence 5'-A-G-T-3' is complementary to the sequence 3'-T-C-A-5'. Complementarity may be "partial," in which only some of the nucleic acids' bases are matched according to the base pairing rules. Or, there may be "complete" or "total" complementarity between the nucleic acids. The degree of complementarity between nucleic acid strands effects the efficiency and strength of hybridization between nucleic acid strands. This is of particular importance in amplification reactions and in detection methods that depend upon binding between nucleic acids.

[0035] The term "gene" refers to a nucleic acid (e.g., DNA or RNA) sequence that comprises coding sequences necessary for the production of an RNA, or of a polypeptide or its precursor. A functional polypeptide can be encoded by a full length coding sequence or by any portion of the coding sequence as long as the desired activity or functional properties (e.g., enzymatic activity, ligand binding, signal transduction, etc.) of the polypeptide are retained. The term "portion" when used in reference to a gene refers to fragments of that gene. The fragments may range in size from a few nucleotides to the entire gene sequence minus one nucleotide. Thus, "a nucleotide comprising at least a portion of a gene" may comprise fragments of the gene or the entire gene.

[0036] The term "gene" also encompasses the coding regions of a structural gene and includes sequences located adjacent to the coding region on both the 5' and 3' ends, e.g., for a distance of about 1 kb on either end, such that the gene corresponds to the length of the full-length mRNA (e.g., comprising coding, regulatory, structural and other sequences). The sequences that are located 5' of the coding region and that are present on the mRNA are referred to as 5' non-translated or untranslated sequences. The sequences that are located 3' or downstream of the coding region and that are present on the mRNA are referred to as 3' non-translated or 3' untranslated sequences. The term "gene" encompasses both cDNA and genomic forms of a gene. In some organisms (e.g., eukaryotes), a genomic form or clone of a gene contains the coding region interrupted with non-coding sequences termed "introns" or "intervening regions" or "intervening sequences." Introns are segments of a gene that are transcribed into nuclear RNA (hnRNA); introns may contain regulatory elements such as enhancers. Introns are removed or "spliced out" from the nuclear or primary transcript; introns therefore are absent in the messenger RNA (mRNA) transcript. The mRNA functions during translation to specify the sequence or order of amino acids in a nascent polypeptide.

[0037] In addition to containing introns, genomic forms of a gene may also include sequences located on both the 5' and 3' ends of the sequences that are present on the RNA transcript. These sequences are referred to as "flanking" sequences or regions (these flanking sequences are located 5' or 3' to the non-translated sequences present on the mRNA transcript). The 5' flanking region may contain regulatory sequences such as promoters and enhancers that control or influence the transcription of the gene. The 3' flanking region may contain sequences that direct the termination of transcription, posttranscriptional cleavage, and polyadenylation.

[0038] The term "wild-type" when made in reference to a gene refers to a gene that has the characteristics of a gene isolated from a naturally occurring source. The term "wild-type" when made in reference to a gene product refers to a gene product that has the characteristics of a gene product isolated from a naturally occurring source. The term "naturally-occurring" as applied to an object refers to the fact that an object can be found in nature. For example, a polypeptide or polynucleotide sequence that is present in an organism (including viruses) that can be isolated from a source in nature and which has not been intentionally modified by the hand of a person in the laboratory is naturally-occurring. A wild-type gene is often that gene or allele that is most frequently observed in a population and is thus arbitrarily designated the "normal" or "wild-type" form of the gene. In contrast, the term "modified" or "mutant" when made in reference to a gene or to a gene product refers, respectively, to a gene or to a gene product that displays modifications in sequence and/or functional properties (e.g., altered characteristics) when compared to the wild-type gene or gene product. It is noted that naturally-occurring mutants can be isolated; these are identified by the fact that they have altered characteristics when compared to the wild-type gene or gene product.

[0039] "Amplification" is a special case of nucleic acid replication involving template specificity. It is to be contrasted with non-specific template replication (e.g., replication that is template-dependent but not dependent on a specific template). Template specificity is here distinguished from fidelity of replication (e.g., synthesis of the proper polynucleotide sequence) and nucleotide (ribo- or deoxyribo-) specificity. Template specificity is frequently described in terms of "target" specificity. Target sequences are "targets" in the sense that they are sought to be sorted out from other nucleic acid. Amplification techniques have been designed primarily for this sorting out.

[0040] Amplification of nucleic acids generally refers to the production of multiple copies of a polynucleotide, or a portion of the polynucleotide, typically starting from a small amount of the polynucleotide (e.g., a single polynucleotide molecule, 10 to 100 copies of a polynucleotide molecule, which may or may not be exactly the same), where the amplification products or amplicons are generally detectable. Amplification of polynucleotides encompasses a variety of chemical and enzymatic processes. The generation of multiple DNA copies from one or a few copies of a target or template DNA molecule during a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or a ligase chain reaction (LCR; see, e.g., U.S. Patent No. 5,494,810) are forms of amplification. Additional types of amplification include, but are not limited to, allele-specific PCR (see, e.g., U.S. Patent No. 5,639,611), assembly PCR (see, e.g., U.S. Patent No. 5,965,408), helicase-dependent amplification (see, e.g., U.S. Patent No. 7,662,594), Hot-start PCR (see, e.g., U.S. Patent Nos. 5,773,258 and 5,338,671), intersequence-specfic PCR, inverse PCR (see, e.g., Triglia, et alet al. (1988) Nucleic Acids Res., 16:8186), ligation-mediated PCR (see, e.g., Guilfoyle, R. et alet al., Nucleic Acids Research, 25:1854-1858 (1997); U.S. Patent No. 5,508,169), methylation-specific PCR (see, e.g., Herman, et al., (1996) PNAS 93(13) 9821-9826), miniprimer PCR, multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (see, e.g., Schouten, et al., (2002) Nucleic Acids Research 30(12): e57), multiplex PCR (see, e.g., Chamberlain, et al., (1988) Nucleic Acids Research 16(23) 11141-11156; Ballabio, et al., (1990) Human Genetics 84(6) 571-573; Hayden, et al., (2008) BMC Genetics 9:80), nested PCR, overlap-extension PCR (see, e.g., Higuchi, et al., (1988) Nucleic Acids Research 16(15) 7351-7367), real time PCR (see, e.g., Higuchi, et alet al., (1992) Biotechnology 10:413-417; Higuchi, et al., (1993) Biotechnology 11:1026-1030), reverse transcription PCR (see, e.g., Bustin, S.A. (2000) J. Molecular Endocrinology 25:169-193), solid phase PCR, thermal asymmetric interlaced PCR, and Touchdown PCR (see, e.g., Don, et al., Nucleic Acids Research (1991) 19(14) 4008; Roux, K. (1994) Biotechniques 16(5) 812-814; Hecker, et al., (1996) Biotechniques 20(3) 478-485). Polynucleotide amplification also can be accomplished using digital PCR (see, e.g., Kalinina, et al., Nucleic Acids Research. 25; 1999-2004, (1997); Vogelstein and Kinzler, Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 96; 9236-41, (1999); International Patent Publication No. WO05023091A2; US Patent Application Publication No. 20070202525).

[0041] As used herein, the term "nucleic acid detection assay" refers to any method of determining the nucleotide composition of a nucleic acid of interest. Nucleic acid detection assay include but are not limited to, DNA sequencing methods, probe hybridization methods, enzyme mismatch cleavage methods (e.g., Variagenics, U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,110,684, 5,958,692, 5,851,770); polymerase chain reaction; branched hybridization methods (e.g., Chiron, U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,849,481, 5,710,264, 5,124,246, and 5,624,802); rolling circle replication (e.g., U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,210,884, 6,183,960 and 6,235,502); NASBA (e.g., U.S. Pat. No. 5,409,818); molecular beacon technology (e.g., U.S. Pat. No. 6,150,097); E-sensor technology (Motorola, U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,248,229, 6,221,583, 6,013,170, and 6,063,573); cycling probe technology (e.g., U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,403,711, 5,011,769, and 5,660,988); Dade Behring signal amplification methods (e.g., U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,121,001, 6,110,677, 5,914,230, 5,882,867, and 5,792,614); ligase chain reaction (e.g., Barnay Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci USA 88, 189-93 (1991)); and sandwich hybridization methods (e.g., U.S. Pat. No. 5,288,609).

[0042] The term "amplifiable nucleic acid" refers to a nucleic acid that may be amplified by any amplification method. It is contemplated that "amplifiable nucleic acid" will usually comprise "sample template."

[0043] The term "primer" refers to an oligonucleotide, whether occurring naturally as in a purified restriction digest or produced synthetically, that is capable of acting as a point of initiation of synthesis when placed under conditions in which synthesis of a primer extension product that is complementary to a nucleic acid strand is induced, (e.g., in the presence of nucleotides and an inducing agent such as a DNA polymerase and at a suitable temperature and pH). The primer is preferably single stranded for maximum efficiency in amplification, but may alternatively be double stranded. If double stranded, the primer is first treated to separate its strands before being used to prepare extension products. Preferably, the primer is an oligodeoxyribonucleotide. The primer must be sufficiently long to prime the synthesis of extension products in the presence of the inducing agent. The exact lengths of the primers will depend on many factors, including temperature, source of primer, and the use of the method.

[0044] The term "probe" refers to an oligonucleotide (e.g., a sequence of nucleotides), whether occurring naturally as in a purified restriction digest or produced synthetically, recombinantly, or by PCR amplification, that is capable of hybridizing to another oligonucleotide of interest. A probe may be single-stranded or double-stranded. Probes are useful in the detection, identification, and isolation of particular gene sequences (e.g., a "capture probe"). It is contemplated that any probe used in the present invention may, in some embodiments, be labeled with any "reporter molecule," so that is detectable in any detection system, including, but not limited to enzyme (e.g., ELISA, as well as enzyme-based histochemical assays), fluorescent, radioactive, and luminescent systems. It is not intended that the present invention be limited to any particular detection system or label.

[0045] As used herein, the term "neoplasm" refers to "an abnormal mass of tissue, the growth of which exceeds and is uncoordinated with that of the normal tissues" See, e.g., Willis RA, "The Spread of Tumors in the Human Body", London, Butterworth & Co, 1952.

[0046] A "site" of a neoplasm, adenoma, cancer, etc. is the tissue, organ, cell type, anatomical area, body part, etc. in a subject's body where the neoplasm, adenoma, cancer, etc. is located.

[0047] As used herein, a "diagnostic" test application includes the detection or identification of a disease state or condition of a subject, determining the likelihood that a subject will contract a given disease or condition, determining the likelihood that a subject with a disease or condition will respond to therapy, determining the prognosis of a subject with a disease or condition (or its likely progression or regression), and determining the effect of a treatment on a subject with a disease or condition. For example, a diagnostic can be used for detecting the presence or likelihood of a subject contracting a neoplasm or the likelihood that such a subject will respond favorably to a compound (e.g., a pharmaceutical, e.g., a drug) or other treatment.

[0048] The term "isolated" when used in relation to a nucleic acid, as in "an isolated oligonucleotide" refers to a nucleic acid sequence that is identified and separated from at least one contaminant nucleic acid with which it is ordinarily associated in its natural source. Isolated nucleic acid is present in a form or setting that is different from that in which it is found in nature. In contrast, non-isolated nucleic acids, such as DNA and RNA, are found in the state they exist in nature. Examples of non-isolated nucleic acids include: a given DNA sequence (e.g., a gene) found on the host cell chromosome in proximity to neighboring genes; RNA sequences, such as a specific mRNA sequence encoding a specific protein, found in the cell as a mixture with numerous other mRNAs which encode a multitude of proteins. However, isolated nucleic acid encoding a particular protein includes, by way of example, such nucleic acid in cells ordinarily expressing the protein, where the nucleic acid is in a chromosomal location different from that of natural cells, or is otherwise flanked by a different nucleic acid sequence than that found in nature. The isolated nucleic acid or oligonucleotide may be present in single-stranded or double-stranded form. When an isolated nucleic acid or oligonucleotide is to be utilized to express a protein, the oligonucleotide will contain at a minimum the sense or coding strand (i.e., the oligonucleotide may be single-stranded), but may contain both the sense and anti-sense strands (i.e., the oligonucleotide may be double-stranded). An isolated nucleic acid may, after isolation from its natural or typical environment, by be combined with other nucleic acids or molecules. For example, an isolated nucleic acid may be present in a host cell in which into which it has been placed, e.g., for heterologous expression.

[0049] The term "purified" refers to molecules, either nucleic acid or amino acid sequences that are removed from their natural environment, isolated, or separated. An "isolated nucleic acid sequence" may therefore be a purified nucleic acid sequence. "Substantially purified" molecules are at least 60% free, preferably at least 75% free, and more preferably at least 90% free from other components with which they are naturally associated. As used herein, the terms "purified" or "to purify" also refer to the removal of contaminants from a sample. The removal of contaminating proteins results in an increase in the percent of polypeptide or nucleic acid of interest in the sample. In another example, recombinant polypeptides are expressed in plant, bacterial, yeast, or mammalian host cells and the polypeptides are purified by the removal of host cell proteins; the percent of recombinant polypeptides is thereby increased in the sample.

[0050] The term "sample" is used in its broadest sense. In one sense it can refer to an animal cell or tissue. In another sense, it is meant to include a specimen or culture obtained from any source, as well as biological and environmental samples. Biological samples may be obtained from plants or animals (including humans) and encompass fluids, solids, tissues, and gases. Environmental samples include environmental material such as surface matter, soil, water, and industrial samples. These examples are not to be construed as limiting the sample types applicable to the present invention.

[0051] As used herein, the terms "patient" or "subject" refer to organisms to be subject to various tests provided by the technology. The term "subject" includes animals, preferably mammals, including humans. In a preferred embodiment, the subject is a primate. In an even more preferred embodiment, the subject is a human.

Examples of the technology



[0052] The following is presented by way of example and not by way of limitation.

[0053] Currently, breast conservation therapy for patients with localized invasive breast cancer includes surgical resection followed by radiation therapy, with chemotherapy given to selected patients. While molecular prognostic tools, such as OncotypeDx, can be used to help guide decisions regarding chemotherapy in subsets of breast cancer patients, no similar tools exist to inform decisions regarding radiation therapy. Therefore, there is a clear need to identify the inherent radiation sensitivity of each patient's breast cancer, and to develop approaches of combining targeted drugs with radiation therapy for patients with aggressive tumors that have a high chance of local recurrence following radiation alone.

[0054] To this end, provided herein are radiation sensitivity signatures, referred to herein as RadiotypeDx. These signatures are based on the expression of genes that distinguish between radiation sensitive (also referred to as radiosensitive) and radiation-resistant (also referred to as radioresistant) cancer cells and subject (e.g., breast cancer). The following description is focused on breast cancer for illustrative purposes. However, it should be understood that the technology may be applied to a variety of cancer types.

[0055] Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in women and the second most common cause of cancer-related death. Traditionally breast cancer has been treated with surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. While these modalities are effective for many early stage breast cancers, especially estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer, many breast cancers (including a disproportionately large number of ER-negative breast cancers) still recur. Multiple randomized clinical trials have demonstrated the benefit of adjuvant radiation therapy after breast conserving surgery. However, it is clear that current adjuvant radiotherapy approaches result in overtreatment of up to 70% of patients who are unlikely to recur after surgery alone. Conversely, there are subsets of patients (up to 20%) who, despite standard multimodality treatment including radiation, will develop local recurrence. Thus, there is a clear need to identify these two populations: those who are currently overtreated, and those who need further treatment intensification. Additionally, for those that are likely to develop recurrence despite standard treatment, further efforts should be aimed at developing molecularly targeted therapies that are more effective and less toxic than currently available treatment option.

[0056] Recent gene expression profiling studies in breast cancer have identified clinically significant heterogeneity amongst breast tumors in terms of gene and protein expression that is not fully accounted for by the standard histopathologic classification of breast cancer. Furthermore, studies detailing the poor response of basal-like (often ER-negative, PR-negative, and HER2/neu negative) and HER2/neu positive tumors to adjuvant radiation therapy further underscore the biologic differences and as yet undefined oncogenic drivers of these particular types of tumors, with basal-like and HER2/neu positive tumors much less likely to have significant disease free and overall survival advantages from adjuvant radiation treatment in women at high risk for local recurrence. Therefore, there is a clear need to identify the radiation sensitivity of each patient's breast cancer, and to develop approaches of combining targeted drugs with radiation therapy for patients with aggressive tumors that have a high chance of local recurrence following radiation alone.

[0057] Unfortunately there has been a relative absence to clinically available radiation sensitizers in women with treatment refractory breast cancers or for women who are at high risk of local recurrence given their clinicopathologic characteristics. Recent collaborative efforts have begun to identify not only recurrent mutations in breast cancer, but have also begun to assess intrinsic sensitivity to chemotherapeutic and molecularly targeted treatments based on these mutations. This information, made publically available, provides a valuable resource for pathway and target discovery within the context of traditionally treatment-refractory disease. Given the lack of targeted agents for triple-negative disease and their relative radiation insensitivity, as evidenced by their increased locoregional recurrence risk, it is clear that additional targets for radiosensitization are critically needed.

[0058] Currently it is not possible to identify a priori which patients are likely to develop a recurrence after adjuvant radiation therapy (i.e. those with radioresistant disease) for whom treatment intensification may be indicated. Despite this clinical limitation, there is precedent for the development of such a test to predict patients likely to benefit from adjuvant treatment. Indeed, molecular prognostic tools, such as OncotypeDx, can be used to help guide decisions regarding chemotherapy in subsets of breast cancer patients. This gene expression based test relies on the expression values of 16 cancer related genes to not only be prognostic in women with estrogen receptor-positive, node positive disease, but is also predictive of response to adjuvant chemotherapy. While this test is currently utilized in clinical practice to guide treatment decisions regarding adjuvant chemotherapy, no such similar tools exist to inform decisions regarding radiation therapy.

[0059] To this end, provided herein is a radiation sensitivity signature, that can distinguish between radiation-sensitive and radiation-resistant subjects. This finds use in identifying subject suitable and not suitable for radiotherapy and also finds use to identify and select therapeutic strategies that overcome radiation resistance. As described in the Examples section below, radiation sensitivity and resistance signature were generated that find use to predict the necessity and utility of postsurgical adjuvant radiation treatment. This has been validated in several non-randomized experiments. Based on such signatures, diagnostic tests (e.g., PCR platform, nanostring platform, or other desired platform etc.) are used to calculates a recurrence score that finds use to guide clinical decision making in deciding which patients benefit from adjuvant radiation therapy.

[0060] Experiments conducted during development of embodiments described herein demonstrate significant heterogeneity in the intrinsic breast cancer radiosensitivity of breast cancers and demonstrate that this radiosensitivity is independent of intrinsic breast cancer subtype. Based on this heterogeneity, a molecular signature of radiation response in breast cancer was developed that is enriched for biologic concepts implicated in response to radiation therapy including DNA damage repair and cell cycle regulation. Furthermore, genes previously unreported to be associated with radiation sensitivity were identified, and it was demonstrated that perturbation of these genes is sufficient to confer alterations in the response to radiation. Experimental evidence using an independent dataset demonstrates the prognostic import of this signature. Radiation response signatures described herein are able to, with great sensitivity and specificity, discriminate patients unlikely to develop local recurrence after radiation therapy from those patients at high likelihood of recurrence despite standard radiation therapy. Signatures described herein may be local recurrence molecular signatures, and may be also prognostic for overall survival, consistent with the finding in breast cancer-specific metaanalyses that local recurrence benefit translates into an overall survival advantage in human patients (Early Breast Cancer Trialists' Collaborative.. Lancet, 2011. 378(9804): p. 1707-16; Clarke, M., et al., Lancet, 2005. 366(9503): p. 2087-106).

[0061] Provided herein are breast cancer-specific molecular signatures of radiation response that provides potentially clinically relevant data regarding the prognosis of patients who receive adjuvant radiation therapy for management of breast cancer. Despite previous attempts to generate a radiation response signature, no single signature has performed well in validation using cohorts of patients with breast cancer. The failure of previous attempts is not surprising, given the diversity and heterogeneity of genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic alterations common to cancers of different origins. Recent analysis of the mutation landscapes across various cancer types further characterizes the heterogeneity of various cancer types (Kandoth, C., et al., Nature, 2013. 502(7471): p. 333-9.; Lawrence, M.S., et al., Nature, 2014. 505(7484): p. 495-501.). Thus, previous signature attempts which rely on radiation sensitivity data from a diverse range of human cancers may have identified conserved pathways implicated in generic cellular response to ionizing radiation, but these have performed poorly in individual cancer types, including breast cancer. Previous studies demonstrated that the clinical and biological features of human breast tumors and human breast cancer cell lines derived from these tumors is remarkably well conserved (Neve, R.M., et al., Cancer Cell, 2006. 10(6): p. 515-27.; Wistuba, II, et al., Clin Cancer Res, 1998. 4(12): p. 2931-8.). Capitalizing on these similarities experiments were conducted utilizing the intrinsic radiosensitivity of human breast cancer cell lines to develop a radiation response signature that is breast cancer specific. The radiation sensitivity of human breast cancer cell lines is independent of intrinsic breast cancer subtype and therefore is not a recapitulation of the previously described subtypes.

[0062] Breast cancer-specific molecular signatures of radiation response, and methods of use thereof find use with a variety of subjects. Such subject include, but are not limited to, all subjects diagnosed with DCIS or LCIS, any subjects treated with breast conserving therapy, including those with 0-3 LN positive; subjects with advanced disease treated with mastectomy with positive LN or 1-3 LN positive.

[0063] The technology relates to assessing the expression of combinations of markers comprising, e.g., 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 27, 29, 30, or more markers, and ranges therein (e.g., from Table 1, Table 2, Table 5, and/or Table 6). Levels of two or more markers from one or more of Tables 1, 2, 5, and 6 may be analyzed in combination with one or more other markers (e.g., breast cancer markers, radiosensitiveity/radioresistance markers, cancer markers, chemosensitivity/chemoresistance markers, unrelated markers). Levels of two or more markers from one or more of Tables 1, 2, 5, and 6 may be analyzed with fewer than 500 total markers (e.g., <500, <400, <300, <200, <100, <50, <40, <30, <20, <10). A panel or multiplex assay or multiple assays may be conducted that assess the expression of two or more markers from Table 1, two or more markers from Table 2, two or more markers from Table 5, and/or two or more markers from Table 6. The expression results are analyzed to generate a risk score (e.g., via computer algorithm weighing each of the markers' expression levels and, for example, comparing to a look-up table of established risk associated with such marker or expression level; in some embodiments, sub-categorized by patient sub-type (e.g., based on age, gender, disease type, or other desired factor)). Markers may be differentially weighted in order to accurately generate a risk score.

[0064] Assessing the expression of more than one marker may increase the specificity and/or sensitivity of a screen or diagnostic. A marker or a combination of markers may discriminate between subjects likely responsive or unresponsive to a particular therapy (e.g., radiotherapy). Patient responses are predicted by various combinations of markers, e.g., as identified by statistical techniques. The technology provides methods for identifying predictive combinations and validated predictive combinations of markers. Markers described in Table 1, Table 2, Table 5, and/or Table 6 may be employed.

[0065] Nucleic acid expression may be assessed by any desired technique. Nucleic acid (e.g., RNA) may be first isolated from a sample. Nucleic acid may be isolated by any means, including the use of commercially available kits. Briefly, wherein the nucleic acid of interest is encapsulated in by a cellular membrane the biological sample may be disrupted and lysed by enzymatic, chemical or mechanical means. The nucleic acid is then recovered from the solution. This may be carried out by means of a variety of methods including salting out, organic extraction, or binding of the nucleic acid to a solid phase support. The choice of method will be affected by several factors including time, expense, and required quantity and/or quality of nucleic acid desired. All clinical sample types are suitable for use in the present method, e.g., cell lines, histological slides, biopsies, paraffin-embedded tissue, body fluids, stool, colonic effluent, urine, blood plasma, blood serum, whole blood, isolated blood cells, cells isolated from the blood, and combinations thereof.

[0066] The technology relates to a method for treating a patient (e.g., a patient with cancer), the method comprising determining the expression level of one or more markers as provided herein and administering a treatment to the patient based on the results of analysis. However said treatment in not part of the claimed invention in view of Art. 53(c) EPC. The treatment may be administration of radiotherapy (alone or in combination with other therapies) or selection of a non-radiotherapy, including, but not limited to, use of a pharmaceutical compound, a vaccine, performing a surgery, etc. The markers may also be used to monitor a patient during a course of therapy to determine, for example, whether the therapy is or remains or become efficacious and to determine whether changes in therapy should be made.

[0067] Contemplated herein are any methods capable of receiving, processing, and transmitting the information to and from laboratories conducting the assays of radiosensitivity, information providers, medical personal, and subjects (e.g., from which cell sample are taken). For example, a sample (e.g., a biopsy or a blood or serum sample) is obtained from a subject (e.g., by a clinician) and submitted to a profiling service (e.g., clinical lab at a medical facility, genomic profiling business, third party testing service/facility, etc.), located in any part of the world to generate raw data. The subject may visit a medical center to have the sample obtained and sent to the profiling center. Once received by the profiling service, the sample is processed and a profile is produced (e.g., expression data), specific for the diagnostic or prognostic information desired for the subject.

[0068] The profile data is then prepared in a suitable format (e.g., suitable for interpretation by a treating clinician). For example, rather than providing raw expression data (e.g., expression levels of a subset of genes from Tables 1, 2, 5, and/or 6), the prepared format may represent a diagnosis or risk assessment, along with recommendations for particular treatment options. The data may be displayed to the clinician by any suitable method. For example, the profiling service generates a report that can be printed for the clinician (e.g., at the point of care) or displayed to the clinician on a computer monitor.

[0069] The information may be first analyzed at the point of care or at a regional facility. The raw data is then sent to a central processing facility for further analysis and/or to convert the raw data to information useful for a clinician or patient. The central processing facility provides the advantage of privacy (all data is stored in a central facility with uniform security protocols), speed, and uniformity of data analysis. The central processing facility can then control the fate of the data following treatment of the subject. For example, using an electronic communication system, the central facility can provide data to the clinician, the subject, or researchers.

[0070] All or a portion of the methods described herein may beprovided as a service. A user (e.g., subject (e.g., patient), clinician, researcher, etc.) may arrange, contract, pay, etc. to have a sample (e.g., comprising a population of cells) and/or data (e.g., raw data) analyzed. A sample may be submitted (e.g., in-person, via mail or courier, etc.) and analysis of the sample for specific biomarkers described herein (e.g., a subset of genes from Tables 1, 2, 5, and/or 6), alone or with other biomarkers, may be performed by the service (e.g., at a diagnostic testing facility, etc.). Data collected by a user (e.g., a clinician, researcher, etc.) may be submitted to a testing facility for analysis. Examples described herein include any suitable combination of user-performed (e.g., subject-performed, clinician-performed, etc.) and service-performed steps. Methods described herein may comprise or may consist of only the steps performed by either the user (e.g., subject, clinician, etc.) of the service (e.g., sample collection, sending a sample, sample analysis, data collection, data analysis, receiving a report, etc.), or the service (e.g., sample collection, receiving a sample, sample analysis, data analysis, generating a report, sending a report, etc.). Any combination of steps may be performed by a user and/or service.

[0071] Analysis results may be reported (e.g., to a health care professional, to a subject, etc.). A result may be provided on a peripheral, device, or component of an apparatus. For example, sometimes an outcome is provided by a printer or display. An outcome may be reported in the form of a report, and in certain examples the report comprises biomarker levels, risk assessment, a compiled score (e.g., based on a plurality of markers), etc. An outcome can be translated into and displayed in a suitable format that facilitates downstream use of the reported information.

[0072] Generating and reporting results from the raw biomarker data (e.g., expression levels) may comprise transformation of the data reads into a representation that reflects information not determinable in the absence of the method steps described herein. Converting biomarker levels into useful information allows actions to be taken (e.g., in response to identifying the radiosensitivity of a cell population (e.g., from a subject)). As such, the methods provided herein address the problem of identifying the radiosensitivity of populations of cells (e.g., cancer cells) from subjects that confronts the fields of medicine, public health, public policy, etc.

[0073] A user or a downstream individual, upon receiving or reviewing a report comprising one or more results determined from the analyses provided herein, may take specific steps or actions in response. For example, a health care professional or qualified individual may provide further testing of a subject (e.g., the subject from which a biological sample comprising the tested cells was obtained). There is no limitation by the number of ways or fields in which the technology herein may find use.

[0074] The term "receiving a report" as used herein refers to obtaining, by a communication means, a written and/or graphical representation comprising results or outcomes of the biomarker analysis described herein. The report may be generated by a computer or by human data entry, and can be communicated using electronic means (e.g., over the internet, via computer, via fax, from one network location to another location at the same or different physical sites), or by another method of sending or receiving data (e.g., mail service, courier service and the like). The outcome may be transmitted in a suitable medium, including, without limitation, in verbal, document, or file form. The file may be, for example, but not limited to, an auditory file, a computer readable file, a paper file, a laboratory file or a medical record file. A report may be encrypted to prevent unauthorized viewing.

[0075] As noted above, systems and method described herein may transform data from one form into another form (e.g., from physical biomarkers in a sample to actual diagnosis, etc.). The terms "transformed", "transformation", and grammatical derivations or equivalents thereof, refer to an alteration of data from a physical starting material (e.g., nucleic acid or protein in a biological sample, etc.) into a digital representation of the physical starting material (e.g., read data), a representation of the amount of that starting material (e.g., biomarker level), a condensation of the sequential representation (e.g., a combined signature based on multiple biomarkers), or a diagnosis, prognosis, or risk assessment, etc. Transformation may involve conversion of data between any of the above.

EXPERIMENTAL


Example 1



[0076] Experiments were conducted during development of embodiments of the present invention to identify a radiosensitivity gene signature, using publicly available gene expression datasets from multiple cohorts of breast cancer samples from patients treated with radiotherapy with long-term clinical follow-up.

[0077] Using clonogenic survival assays, the range of surviving fraction (SF) after 2 Gy of radiotherapy (RT) across 21 BC cell lines was determined (SEE FIG. 1). Using SF as a continuous variable, the RT sensitivity score (RSS) was correlated to gene expression using a Spearman correlation method on an individual gene basis. Genes were selected for the signature based on positive or negative correlation. Unsupervised hierarchical clustering identified (SEE FIG. 2) differences in gene expression across resistant and sensitive cell lines to generate a radiation sensitivity (RS) signature. This signature was trained and validated in a separate human breast tumor dataset containing early stage, node-negative patients treated with surgery and RT alone without adjuvant chemotherapy to assess the predictive effect of RS signature on recurrence risk after RT. Gene function and potentially actionable targets from the signature were validated using clonogenic survival and DNA damage assays.

[0078] Clonogenic survival identifies a range of radiation sensitivity in human BCC lines (SF 77%-17%) with no significant correlation to the intrinsic BC subtype. Using a 2-sided Spearmans correlation method, a total of 126 genes were identified as being associated with radiation sensitivity (positively correlated (Table 1), negatively correlated (Table 2)). Unsupervised hierarchical expression discriminates gene expression patterns in the RT resistant and RT sensitive cell lines and is enriched for genes involved in cell cycle arrest and DNA damage response. Knockdown of genes associated with the radioresistance signature identifies previously unreported radiation resistance genes, including TACC1 and RND3 with enhancement ratios of 1.25 and 1.37 in BCC lines. Application of this RS signature to an independent breast cancer dataset with clinical outcomes validates the signature and accurately identifies patients with decreased rates of recurrence compared to patients with high expression of the radioresistant signature. All or a portion of the negatively and positively correlated genes may serve as a predictive signature of research and clinical utility.
Table 1 - Radiosensitivity Associate Genes
Gene NameGene ID
Abhydrolase domain containing 11 ABHD11
Anterior gradient homolog 2 (Xenopus laevis) AGR2
Apolipoprotein D APOD
  ARHGAP8
ASF1 anti-silencing function 1 homolog B (S. cerevisiae) ASF1B
B-cell CLL/lymphoma 7C BCL7C
BEX family member 4 BEX4
Bloom syndrome BLM
BTG family, member 2 BTG2
BUB1 budding uninhibited by benzimidazoles 1 homolog BUB1B
Chromosome 19 open reading frame 21 C19orf21
Chromosome 22 open reading frame 9 C22orf9
Chromosome 4 open reading frame 19 C4orf19
  CALHM2
  CDC45
Cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A (p21, Cip1) CDKN1A
Chromatin licensing and DNA replication factor 1 CDT1
Cordon-bleu homolog (mouse) COBL
Desmoplakin DSP
Denticleless homolog (Drosophila) DTL
Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 1A, X-linked EIF1AX
Epithelial membrane protein 2 EMP2
Extra spindle pole bodies homolog 1 (S. cerevisiae) ESPL1
Fatty acid 2-hydroxylase FA2H
FERM, RhoGEF (ARHGEF) and pleckstrin domain protein 1 FARP1
Fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase 1 FBP1
Glucosaminyl (N-acetyl) transferase 1, core 2 GCNT1
  GIYD1
  GLB1L2
Glutathione S-transferase M3 (brain) GSTM3
Histamine N-methyltransferase HNMT
Hook homolog 1 (Drosophila) HOOK1
Homeobox C13 HOXC13
Interferon stimulated exonuclease gene 20kDa ISG20
Kinesin family member 11 KIF11
Kinesin family member 14 KIF14
Ladinin 1 LAD1
LIM and cysteine-rich domains 1 LMCD1
MARCKS-like 1 MARCKSL1
Minichromosome maintenance complex component 10 MCM10
Minichromosome maintenance complex component 2 MCM2
Minichromosome maintenance complex component 5 MCM5
Microfibrillar-associated protein 3-like MFAP3L
Monoglyceride lipase MGLL
O-6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase MGMT
Antigen identified by monoclonal antibody Ki-67 MKI67
MKL/myocardin-like 2 MKL2
Msh homeobox 1 MSX1
Metastasis suppressor 1 MTSS1
Myosin VC MYO5C
Neurogranin (protein kinase C substrate, RC3) NRGN
N eurturin NRTN
Progestin and adipoQ receptor family member IV PAQR4
Programmed cell death 4 (neoplastic transformation inhibitor) PDCD4
PDZ domain containing 2 PDZD2
Phosphoinositide-3-kinase, regulatory subunit 3 (p55, gamma) PIK3R3
Protein kinase, membrane associated tyrosine/threonine 1 PKMYT1
Plakophilin 1 (ectodermal dysplasia/skin fragility syndrome) PKP1
Phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C, X dom. 1 PLCXD1
Pleckstrin homology domain FM PLEKHA1
Podocalyxin-like PODXL
Polymerase (DNA directed), epsilon 2 (p59 subunit) POLE2
Polymerase (RNA) III (DNA directed) polypeptide K, 12.3 kDa POLR3K
Protein regulator of cytokinesis 1 PRC1
Protein kinase, X-linked PRKX
Proline dehydrogenase (oxidase) 1 PRODH
Phosphoribosyl pyrophosphate synthetase 2 PRPS2
RAB15, member RAS onocogene family RAB15
RAB GTPase activating protein 1-like RABGAP1L
RAD51 associated protein 1 RAD51AP1
SIVA1, apoptosis-inducing factor SIVA1
S-phase kinase-associated protein 2 (p45) SKP2
Solute carrier family 16, member 7 SLC16A7
  SNRNP25
SPC25, NDC80 kinetochore complex component, homolog SPC25
Small proline-rich protein 1B (cornifin) SPRR1B
ST3 beta-galactoside alpha-2,3-sialyltransferase 5 ST3GAL5
Serine/threonine kinase 38 like STK38L
Transducin (beta)-like 1X-linked TBL1X
Thymidine kinase 1, soluble TK1
Tetraspanin 13 TSPAN13
Tetraspanin 8 TSPAN8
Thioredoxin interacting protein TXNIP
Table 2 - Radioresistance Associate Genes
Gene NameGene ID
adhesion molecule with Ig-like domain 2 AMIGO2
angiomotin like 2 AMOTL2
hypothetical LOC100129500; apolipoprotein E APOE
armadillo repeat containing, X-linked 2 ARMCX2
butyrylcholinesterase BCHE
chromosome 14 open reading frame 139 C14orf139
CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (C/EBP), beta CEBPB
collagen, type XVI, alpha 1 COL16A1
cullin 4B CUL4B
chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 6 (granulocyte chemotactic protein 2) CXCL6
cysteine-rich, angiogenic inducer, 61 CYR61
doublecortin-like kinase 1 DCLK1
discoidin domain receptor tyrosine kinase 2 DDR2
degenerative spermatocyte homolog 1, lipid desaturase (Drosophila) DEGS1
deiodinase, iodothyronine, type II DIO2
deleted in lymphocytic leukemia 1 (non-protein coding) DLEU1
distal-less homeobox 2 DLX2
formin homology 2 domain containing 3 FHOD3
formin binding protein 1 FNBP1
frizzled homolog 2 (Drosophila) FZD2
galactosylceramidase GALC
glucan (1,4-alpha-), branching enzyme 1 GBE1
golgi autoantigen, golgin subfamily GOLGA8A
golgi autoantigen, golgin subfamily a, 8B GOLGA8B
glutathione peroxidase 7 GPX7
HEG homolog 1 (zebrafish) HEG1
hect domain and RLD 2 pseudogene 2 HERC2P2
hect domain and RLD 2 pseudogene 2 HERC2P3
HIV-1 Tat interactive protein 2, 30kDa HTATIP2
intercellular adhesion molecule 1 ICAM1
interferon gamma receptor 1 IFNGR1
inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor, type 1 ITPR1
potassium channel, subfamily K, member 2 KCNK2
KIAA0802 KIAA0802
kin of IRRE like (Drosophila) KIRREL
lysosomal-associated membrane protein 2 LAMP2
hect domain and RLD 2 pseudogene LOC440248
latent transforming growth factor beta binding protein 2 LTBP2
melanoma antigen family A, 3 MAGEA3
mediator complex subunit 17 MED17
matrix metallopeptidase 2 MMP2
M-phase phosphoprotein 8 MPHOSPH8
nuclear factor, interleukin 3 regulated NFIL3
oncostatin M receptor OSMR
osteopetrosis associated transmembrane protein 1 OSTM1
pre-B-cell leukemia homeobox 3 PBX3
platelet derived growth factor C PDGFC
popeye domain containing 3 POPDC3
protein kinase C, alpha PRKCA
ProSAPiP1 protein ProSAPiP1
phosphoserine phosphatase-like; phosphoserine phosphatase PSPH
prostaglandin E receptor 4 (subtype EP4) PTGER4
peroxisomal membrane protein 4, 24kDa PXMP4
RAB31, member RAS oncogene family RAB31
REX2, RNA exonuclease 2 homolog (S. cerevisiae) REXO2
regulator of G-protein signaling 4 RGS4
Rho family GTPase 3 RND3
ring finger protein (C3H2C3 type) 6 RNF6
regulation of nuclear pre-mRNA domain containing 1A RPRD1A
secreted and transmembrane 1 SECTM1
serpin peptidase inhibitor, clade E member 2 SERPINE2
solute carrier family 39 (zinc transporter), member 14 SLC39A14
SH3 and cysteine rich domain STAC
serine/threonine kinase 17a STK17A
transforming, acidic coiled-coil containing protein 1 TACC1
transcription factor 4 TCF4
transcription factor CP2 TFCP2
transmembrane protein 30A TMEM30A
thioredoxin-related transmembrane protein 4 TMX4
TRAF2 and NCK interacting kinase TNIK
tripeptidyl peptidase I TPP1
ubiquitin specific peptidase like 1 USPL1
vesicle-associated membrane protein 7 VAMP7
Yes-associated protein 1, 65kDa YAP1
zinc finger protein 259 ZNF259
zinc finger protein 259, pseudogene ZNF259P1
similar to zinc finger protein 347; zinc finger protein 532 ZNF532


[0079] The expression of selected genes identified in array profiling were validated as being more highly expressed in the radiation resistant cell lines compared to the radiation sensitive cell lines by western blotting (SEE FIG. 3A). RNA Expression data for 2 representative genes (TACC1 and RND3) from a panel or radiation resistant and radiation sensitive breast cancer cell lines are shown were analyzed (SEE FIG. 3B).

[0080] Knockdown experiments with siRNA designed against TACC-1, a gene identified in the radioresistance signature, effectively knocked down the expression of TACC-1 (SEE FIG. 4A). Clonogenic survival assays in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells after siRNA knockdown of TACC-1 show significant sensitization of these cells to ionizing radiation with an enhancement ratio of 1.1-1.4.

[0081] Genes identified in experiments conducted during development of embodiments of the present invention were sorted by gene function to identify gene functions enriched in genes negatively associated with clonogenic survival (Table 3) and gene functions enriched in genes positively associated with clonogenic survival (Table 4).
Table 3 - Gene Functions Enriched in Genes Negatively Associated with Clonogenic Survival
FeatureFDRGenes in networkGenes in genome
M/G1 transition of mitotic cell cycle 5.02E-14 13 79
cell cycle checkpoint 4.52E-12 16 235
regulation of cell cycle arrest 1.10E-11 16 255
G1/S transition of mitotic cellcycle 1.19E-11 14 169
S phase 4..64E-10 12 135
DNA replication 1.09E-09 13 191
S phase of mitotic cell cycle 5.44E-09 11 128
DNA-dependent DNA replication 1.90E-06 8 81
DNA strand elongation involved in DNA replication 2.82E-04 5 32
DNA strand elongation 4.06E-04 5 35
DNA-dependent DNA replication initiation 1.28E-03 4 19
regulation of transcription involved in G1/S phase of mitotic cell cycle 1.46E-03 4 20
DNA replication checkpoint 9.36E-03 3 10
negative regulation of G2/M transition of mitotic cell cycle 1.48E-02 3 12
DNA integrity checkpoint 1.48E-02 6 132
G2/M transition of mitotic cell cycle 1.48E-02 6 134
nuclear chromosome part 5.91E-02 6 173
ATP-dependent DNA helicase activity 9.12E-02 3 23
regulation ofG2/M transition of mitotic cell cycle 9.12E-02 3 23
Table 4 - Gene Functions Enriched in Genes Positively Associated with Clonogenic Survival
FeatureFDRGenes in networkGenes in genome
tRNA aminoacylation for protein translation 2.71E-01 4 42
amino acid activation 2.71E-01 4 45
transforming growth factor beta receptor signaling pathway 2.71E-01 5 88
tRNA aminoacylation 2.71E-01 4 45
regulation of platelet activation 2.91E-01 3 18
aminoacyl-tRNA ligase activity 4.42E-01 3 24
ligase activity, forming aminoacyl-tRNA and related compounds 4.42E-01 3 24
ligase activity, forming carbon-oxygen bonds 4.42E-01 3 24
positive regulation of fibroblast proliferation 5.01E-01 3 26
tRNA metabolic process 5.46E-01 4 68

Example 2



[0082] Using clonogenic survival assays, the range of surviving fraction after 2 Gy (SF-2Gy) of radiation was identified across 16 breast cancer cell lines. Using SF-2Gy as a continuous variable, the intrinsic radiation sensitivity was correlated to gene expression using Spearman's correlation method. Genes were selected for the signature based on significant positive or negative correlation of radiation naive expression with SF-2Gy. Using these genes, a radiation sensitivity signature was generated using a Random Forest model and was refined, cross-validated, and then independently validated in multiple separate human breast tumor datasets.

[0083] Clonogenic survival identifies a range of radiation sensitivity in human breast cancer cell lines (SF-2Gy 77%-17%) with no significant correlation (r value <0.3) to the intrinsic breast cancer subtype. Using Spearman's correlation method, a total of 147 genes were identified as being associated with radiation sensitivity (80 positively correlated, 67 negatively correlated (See Table 5)). Functional analysis of signature genes identifies previously unreported radiation resistance-associated genes, including TACC1 and RND3. The radiation sensitivity signature was trained and further refined to 51 genes (See Table 6) that were enriched for biological concepts involving cell cycle arrest and DNA damage response (including RAD51, ATM, and BUB1). The performance of the refined radiation sensitivity signature was cross-validated in the training set as able to significantly distinguish patients who would recur locoregionally in the future on univariate and multivariate analysis. The radiation sensitivity score was then subsequently validated in an independent breast cancer dataset and was again able to accurately discriminate patients who developed locoregional recurrence from those who did not. The radiation sensitivity score was again the most significant factor in predicting local recurrence on multivariate analysis and outperformed all currently used clinicopathologic features associated with local recurrence.

[0084] Experiments conducted during development of embodiments of the present invention derived a human breast cancer-specific radiation sensitivity signature with biologic relevance from preclinical studies and validated the signature for prediction of locoregional recurrence in an independent clinical data set. This signature outperforms all previously developed signatures and clinicopathologic features associated with local recurrence. The signature is not correlated to the intrinsic subtypes of human breast cancer and therefore represents "value added" information over traditional breast cancer subtyping. By identifying patients with tumors refractory to standard radiation this signature allows for personalization of radiotherapy, particularly in patients for whom treatment intensification is needed.

A. Patient Cohorts.



[0085] Two publicly available clinical cohorts were utilized. A multi-institutional training cohort of 343 patients from the Netherlands and France with early stage breast cancer treated with breast-conserving surgery with post-op radiation (Servant, N., et al., Clin Cancer Res, 2012. 18(6): p. 1704-15.), and a validation cohort of 295 patients from the Netherlands with early stage breast cancer treated surgically with radiation as indicated (van de Vijver, M.J., et al., N Engl J Med, 2002. 347(25): p. 1999-2009.).

B. RNA isolation and Quantitative RT-PCR (Q-RT-PCR).



[0086] Total RNA was isolated using the RNeasy RNA isolation kit (QIAGEN). Quantitative RT-PCR assays of transcripts were carried out using gene-specific double fluorescence-labeled probes in an ABI PRISM 7500 Sequence Detector (Applied Biosystem). The PCR reaction mixture contained 300nM each of the forward and reverse primers, 100nM probe, 0.025 units/µl of Taq Polymerase (Invitrogen), 125µM each of dNTP, 5mM MgC12, and 1X Taq Polymerase buffer. Cycling conditions were 95°C for 30 seconds, followed by 40 cycles at 95°C for 5 seconds and 60°C for 30 seconds 6-Carboxy fluorescein (FAM) was used as the 5' fluorescent reporter and black hole quencher (BHQ1) was used at the 3'end quencher. All reactions were performed using triplicate RNA samples. Standard curves for the quantification of each transcript were generated using a serially diluted solution of synthetic templates. Results were reported as average expression ± standard error of the mean.

1. Cell culture and cell lines



[0087] ZR75-1, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-468, MDA-MB-453, HCC 1954, and HCC 1937 breast cancer cell lines were grown in RPMI 1640 (Invitrogen, Carlsbad, CA) supplemented with 10% FBS (Invitrogen) in a 5% CO2 cell culture incubator. MDA-MB-436 and Sk-BR3 breast cancer cell lines were grown in DMEM (Invitrogen, Carlsbad, CA) supplemented with 10% FBS (Invitrogen) in a 5% CO2 cell culture incubator. SUM-149 breast cancer cell lines were grown in Ham's F12 medium (Gibco) supplemented with 5% FBS (Invitrogen), 1000 µg/ul insulin, and 500 µl of hydrocortisone (2 mg/µl) in a 5% CO2 cell culture incubator. MRC-5 cells were maintained in Eagle minimum essential medium supplemented with 10% FBS. MCF-10A cell were maintained in MEGM medium with Single Quots added (Lonza). All cell lines were purchased from ATCC or Deutsche Sammlung von Mikroorganismens und Zellkulturen GmbH (DSMZ). All cultures were also maintained with 50 units/ml of Penicillin/streptomycin (Invitrogen). Experiments were conducted on exponentially growing cells.

2. Clonogenic survival assays



[0088] Exponentially growing cells were treated with drugs/radiation at doses as indicated and then replated at cloning densities chosen to demonstrate the greatest dynamic range in the survival assays. Cells were grown for up to 14 days and then fixed and stained with methanol-acetic acid and crystal violet, respectively, and scored for colonies of 50 cells or more. Drug cytotoxicity was calculated as the ratio of surviving drug-treated cells relative to untreated control cells. Radiation survival data from drug-treated cells were corrected for drug cytotoxicity, as previously described (Han, S., et al., Neoplasia, 2013. 15(10): p. 1207-17.). Cell survival curves were fitted using the linear-quadratic equation, and the mean inactivation dose calculated according to the method of Fertil and colleagues (Fertil, B., et al., Radiat Res, 1984. 99(1): p. 73-84.). The radiation enhancement ratio (EnhR) was calculated as the ratio of the mean inactivation dose under control conditions divided by the mean inactivation dose under drug-treated conditions

3. Immunoblotting



[0089] Cell pellets were lysed and immunoblotted (Brenner, J.C., et al., Cancer Cell, 2011. 19(5): p. 664-78.). Proteins were detected with anti-TACC1, RND3, DTL (Cell Signaling, Cat #9532), and anti-GAPDH antibody (Cell Signaling, Cat #2118)

4. Irradiation



[0090] Irradiation was carried out using a Philips RT250 (Kimtron Medical) at a dose rate of∼2 Gy/min in the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center Experimental Irradiation Core. Dosimetry was carried out using an ionization chamber connected to an electrometer system that is directly traceable to a National Institute of Standards and Technology calibration.

C. Statistical Analyses


1. Microarrays:



[0091] Normalized expression data for the cell lines was downloaded from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute. Normalized expression data for the training cohort was downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GSE30682). Normalized expression data was obtained for the validation cohort. All expression data was log transformed, and median centered and scaled in order to make the disparate platforms comparable.

2. Discovery in vitro:



[0092] Clonogenic survival was performed after radiation on 16 cell lines as described above. The surviving fraction after 2 Gy of radiation (SF-2Gy) was calculated for all 16 cell lines. Spearman's correlation was performed correlating the SF-2Gy to the radiation naive expression of every gene on the microarrays. A fold change was calculated for every gene between the 25th and 75th percentiles of expression. Genes were selected for initial inclusion in the model if the Spearman's correlationp < 0.05 or with a fold change > 2. Unsupervised hierarchical clustering, was performed on the expression of these genes in the BC cell lines.

3. Training and validation:



[0093] The set of genes selected from the cell lines described above was then used to train a Random Forest model from the training cohort. Only genes present on both the microarray platforms in the training and validation cohorts were included as not all the genes were present given the differing microarray platforms. The prognostic value of each gene by itself was calculated using a student's T-test comparing expression in samples from patients who developed local recurrence in the future, and patients who didn't. P-value cutoffs from p < 1 to p < 0.05 were used to select genes, using progressively stricter increments of 0.05. Performance of each subset of genes was determined using out-of-bag (OOB) error rate, an internal cross-validation mechanism of Random Forest models, and the subset that had the best performance was selected as the refined gene signature. The OOB predictions of the final refined signature were used to evaluate the cross-validated performance in the training cohort. This signature was then locked and used to classify the validation cohort without further modification. Enrichment of biological concepts was performed on the genes in the final signature using ConceptGen (conceptgen.ncibi.org/).

4. Statistical analysis:



[0094] Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were generated based on the raw Random Forest voting frequency. Classification of samples into high and low risk groups used the majority vote. The performance of these predictions for clinical outcomes in the training and validation cohorts was evaluated using Fisher's exact test. Kaplan Meier curves were generated and compared using a Log-rank test. Univariable and Multivariable analysis was performed using Cox regression. R software packages (r-project.org) were used for all data and statistical analysis.

D. Development of a radiation response signature.



[0095] To develop a molecular biomarker signature for radiation response, a strategy was employed to investigate the intrinsic radiosensitivity of 16 breast cancer cell lines chosen to represent the heterogeneity found within human breast cancer (SEE FIG. 6). For the purposes of signature development, 16 breast cancer cell lines were choosen and the long-term intrinsic radiation sensitivity of these cell lines was characterized by performing clonogenic survival assays after varying doses of ionizing radiation. This selection included 5 luminal, 4 basal A, 4 basal B, and 3 HER2/neu amplified cell lines as defined by previous gene expression profiling studies (Hu, X., et al., Mol Cancer Res, 2009. 7(4): p. 511-22.; Neve, R.M., et al., Cancer Cell, 2006. 10(6): p. 515-27.). The surviving fraction after 2 Gy (the typical daily fractions dose size used clinically for breast cancer treatment) of ionizing radiation was calculated based on these data and represents the intrinsic radiosensitivity of these human breast cancer cell lines (SEE FIG. 7). There was strong correlation between the SF-2Gy value and other metrics of radiation sensitivity (DBar, Gy (1%), AUC) for clonogenic survival and thus SF-2Gy values were used for further signature development. The clonogenic survival assays identified a previously unappreciated broad range of intrinsic radiosensitivity across the 16 breast cancer cell lines with SF-2Gy values ranging from 77-17%.

E. Intrinsic breast cancer radiosensitivity is independent of subtype.



[0096] It was then determined whether the intrinsic radiosensitivity of the 16 breast cancer cell lines was correlated to the previously defined intrinsic subtypes of human breast cancer, as significant correlation would indicate that radiation sensitivity is closely related to the intrinsic subtypes and thus obfuscate the benefit of further radiation signature development. Correlation of the intrinsic radiosensitivity of breast cancer cell lines to the intrinsic subtype of human breast cancer revealed no significant association between the radiosensitivity of the cell lines and their respective intrinsic subtype (SEE FIG. 7B).

F. Radiation sensitivity signature development.



[0097] To develop the radiation response signature, gene expression data from the 16 breast cancer cell lines was used and the correlation coefficient was calculated of the basal gene expression values with the radiation sensitivity metric (SF-2Gy) on a gene-by-gene basis. Gene expression values that were either positively or negatively correlated with radiation sensitivity (as measured by clonogenic survival assays) with a Spearman's correlation p-value < 0.05 with a fold change > 2 fold were retained within the signature (representative gene shown in FIG. 7C). This analysis identified 147 genes (67 genes positively correlated, 80 genes negatively correlated) whose expression was significantly correlated with SF-2Gy (SEE FIG. 7D and Table 5).
Table 5. Genes positively and negatively associated with clonogenic survival in breast cancer cell lines
Genes positively and negatively associated with clonogenic survival in breast cancer cell lines
67 Genes Positively Correlated with Radioresistance
Gene SymbolGene NameCorrelation Coeff.P-value
MED17 mediator complex subunit 17 0.83 <0.01
TACC1 transforming, acidic coiled-coil containing protein 1 0.78 <0.01
ATM Serine-protein kinase ATM 0.69 <0.01
CEP57 centrosomal protein 57kDa 0.68 0.01
ARMCX2 armadillo repeat containing, X-linked 2 0.67 0.00
ANKRD49 ankyrin repeat domain 49 0.67 0.01
TXNRD1 mitochondrial translational release factor 1 0.66 0.01
MTRF1 thioredoxin reductase 1 0.66 0.01
ZNF259 zinc finger protein 259 0.65 0.01
SQSTM1 sequestosome 1 0.64 0.01
PDGFC platelet derived growth factor C 0.63 0.01
RNF160 ring finger protein 160 0.63 0.01
SGMS1 sphingomyelin synthase 1 0.62 0.01
OSTM1 osteopetrosis associated transmembrane protein 1 0.61 0.01
NFIL3 nuclear factor, interleukin 3 regulated 0.61 0.01
PRKCA protein kinase C, alpha 0.61 0.01
PBX3 pre-B-cell leukemia homeobox 3 0.61 0.01
KIAA0802 KIAA0802 0.60 0.01
BIRC2 baculoviral IAP repeat-containing 2 0.60 0.02
LAMP2 lysosomal-associated membrane protein 2 0.59 0.02
GNAI1 guanine nucleotide binding protein inhibiting activity peptide 1 0.59 0.02
TMX4 thioredoxin-related transmembrane protein 4 0.59 0.02
RND3 Rho family GTPase 3 0.59 0.02
TAF1D TATA box binding protein (TBP)-associated factor 0.59 0.02
ZNF532 similar to zinc finger protein 347; zinc finger protein 532 0.58 0.02
DNAJB4 DnaJ (Hsp40) homolog, subfamily B, member 4 0.58 0.02
VAMP7 vesicle-associated membrane protein 7 0.58 0.02
CEP170 centrosomal protein 170kDa 0.57 0.02
SARS seryl-tRNA synthetase 0.57 0.02
TNIK TRAF2 and NCK interacting kinase 0.57 0.02
RPRD1A regulation of nuclear pre-mRNA domain containing 1A 0.56 0.02
ZNF177 zinc finger protein 177 0.56 0.02
VLDLR very low density lipoprotein receptor 0.56 0.03
ITPR1 inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor, type 1 0.55 0.03
MSRA methionine sulfoxide reductase A 0.55 0.03
STAC prostaglandin E receptor 4 (subtype EP4) 0.55 0.03
PTGER4 SH3 and cysteine rich domain 0.55 0.03
TOR1B torsin family 1, member B (torsin B) 0.54 0.03
SERPINE2 serpin peptidase inhibitor member 2 0.54 0.03
BIN1 bridging integrator 1 0.54 0.03
TFCP2 transcription factor CP2 0.54 0.03
SDHD breast cancer anti-estrogen resistance 3 0.54 0.03
BCAR3 similar to succinate dehydrogenase complex, subunit D 0.54 0.03
OSMR oncostatin M receptor 0.54 0.03
DNAJC24 DnaJ (Hsp40) homolog, subfamily C, member 24 0.54 0.03
EMP3 epithelial membrane protein 3 0.54 0.03
GALC galactosylceramidase 0.54 0.03
TSC22D1 chromodomain protein, Y-like 0.53 0.04
CDYL TSC22 domain family, member 1 0.53 0.04
WDR47 WD repeat domain 47 0.53 0.03
EIF3M adhesion molecule with Ig-like domain 2 0.53 0.04
AMIGO2 eukaryotic translation initiation factor 3, subunit M 0.53 0.04
SLC39A14 cysteine-rich, angiogenic inducer, 61 0.52 0.04
CYR61 solute carrier family 39 (zinc transporter), member 14 0.52 0.04
C6orf120 chromosome 6 open reading frame 120 0.52 0.04
FZD2 frizzled homolog 2 (Drosophila) 0.52 0.04
PXMP4 peroxisomal membrane protein 4, 24kDa 0.52 0.04
ZNF204P zinc finger protein 204 pseudogene 0.52 0.04
C14orf139 chromosome 14 open reading frame 139 0.52 0.04
SMAP1 small ArfGAP 1 0.52 0.04
STC1 stanniocalcin 1 0.52 0.04
SGCE phosphoserine aminotransferase 1 0.51 0.04
PSAT1 sarcoglycan, epsilon 0.51 0.04
STK17A serine/threonine kinase 17a 0.51 0.05
MAMLD1 mastermind-like domain containing 1 0.50 0.05
BACH1 BTB and CNC homology 1 basic leucine zipper transcription factor 1 0.50 0.05
CCDC90B coiled-coil domain containing 90B 0.50 0.05
80 Genes Negatively Correlated with Radioresistance
Gene SymbolGene NameCorrelation Coeff.P-value
EMP2 epithelial membrane protein 2 -0.78 <0.01
C4orf19 chromosome 4 open reading frame 19 -0.77 <0.01
DTL denticleless homolog -0.77 <0.01
FBP1 fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase 1 -0.74 <0.01
DSP desmoplakin -0.71 <0.01
C19orf21 chromosome 19 open reading frame 21 -0.68 <0.01
COBL cordon-bleu homolog -0.67 <0.01
APOD apolipoprotein D -0.66 0.01
BOLA2 bolA homolog 2 (E. coli); bolA homolog 2B -0.66 0.01
CPE carboxypeptidase E -0.65 0.01
PYCRL pyrroline-5-carboxylate reductase-like -0.64 0.01
LAD1 ladinin 1 -0.62 0.01
MGLL monoglyceride lipase -0.61 0.01
PLCXD1 phosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase C domain containing 1 -0.61 0.01
MCM2 minichromosome maintenance complex component 2 -0.61 0.01
MTSS1 metastasis suppressor 1 -0.61 0.01
PDZD2 PDZ domain containing 2 -0.61 0.01
TSPAN13 tetraspanin 13 -0.61 0.01
BLM Bloom syndrome, RecQ helicase-like -0.60 0.02
BTG2 BTG family, member 2 -0.60 0.02
CDKN1A cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A (p21, Cipl) -0.60 0.02
RABGAP1L RAB GTPase activating protein 1-like -0.60 0.02
ABHD11 abhydrolase domain containing 11 -0.59 0.02
POLE2 polymerase (DNA directed), epsilon 2 (p59 subunit) -0.59 0.02
FXYD3 FXYD domain containing ion transport regulator 3 -0.59 0.02
HOXC13 homeobox C13 -0.59 0.02
TDRD1 tudor domain containing 1 -0.59 0.02
CNKSR1 connector enhancer of kinase suppressor of Ras 1 -0.59 0.02
GLB1L2 galactosidase, beta 1-like 2 -0.58 0.02
MAPK3 mitogen-activated protein kinase 3 -0.58 0.02
HOOK1 hook homolog 1 (Drosophila) -0.57 0.02
AGR2 anterior gradient homolog 2 -0.57 0.02
LPAR2 lysophosphatidic acid receptor 2 -0.56 0.02
PDCD4 programmed cell death 4 -0.56 0.02
PKP1 plakophilin 1 -0.56 0.02
SRD5A1 steroid-5-alpha-reductase, alpha polypeptide 1 -0.56 0.02
S100P S100 calcium binding protein P -0.56 0.03
PRC1 protein regulator of cytokinesis 1 -0.56 0.03
PLEKHA1 pleckstrin homology domain containing, family A member 1 -0.56 0.03
BUB1B budding uninhibited by benzimidazoles 1 homolog beta -0.55 0.03
SIVA1 SIVA1, apoptosis-inducing factor -0.55 0.03
HSPA2 heat shock 70kDa protein 2 -0.55 0.03
RBPMS RNA binding protein with multiple splicing -0.55 0.03
LMCD1 LIM and cysteine-rich domains 1 -0.55 0.03
TJP2 tight junction protein 2 (zona occludens 2) -0.55 0.03
DNMT3B DNA (cytosine-5-)-methyltransferase 3 beta -0.54 0.03
TK1 thymidine kinase 1, soluble -0.54 0.03
MKI67 antigen identified by monoclonal antibody Ki-67 -0.54 0.03
DCI dodecenoyl-Coenzyme A delta isomerase -0.54 0.03
RAB15 RAB15, member RAS onocogene family -0.54 0.03
MCM10 minichromosome maintenance complex component 10 -0.53 0.04
CDT1 chromatin licensing and DNA replication factor 1 -0.53 0.04
HNMT histamine N-methyltransferase -0.53 0.04
MYH14 myosin, heavy chain 14 -0.53 0.04
RAD51 RAD51 homolog (RecA homolog, E. coli) -0.53 0.04
TRIM14 tripartite motif-containing 14 -0.52 0.04
SKP2 S-phase kinase-associated protein 2 (p45) -0.52 0.04
ISG20 interferon stimulated exonuclease gene 20kDa -0.52 0.04
C22orf9 chromosome 22 open reading frame 9 -0.52 0.04
CALHM2 calcium homeostasis modulator 2 -0.52 0.04
HELLS helicase, lymphoid-specific -0.52 0.04
LOC100272216 hypothetical LOC100272216 -0.52 0.04
KRT86 keratin 86 -0.52 0.04
MSLN mesothelin -0.52 0.04
SLC44A1 solute carrier family 44, member 1 -0.52 0.04
CORO2A coronin, actin binding protein, 2A -0.51 0.04
MYO5C myosin VC -0.51 0.04
S100A13 S100 calcium binding protein A13 -0.51 0.04
BATF basic leucine zipper transcription factor, ATF-like -0.51 0.04
LHPP phospholysine phosphohistidine inorganic pyrophosph. phosphatase -0.51 0.04
GINS2 GINS complex subunit 2 (Psf2 homolog) -0.51 0.05
MCM5 minichromosome maintenance complex component 5 -0.51 0.05
PBX1 pre-B-cell leukemia homeobox 1 -0.51 0.05
RAB25 RAB25, member RAS oncogene family -0.51 0.05
BEX4 brain expressed, X-linked 4 -0.50 0.05
PAQR4 progestin and adipoQ receptor family member IV -0.50 0.05
SPC25 SPC25, NDC80 kinetochore complex component, homolog -0.50 0.05
C13orf34 chromosome 13 open reading frame 34 -0.50 0.05
ASF1B ASF1 anti-silencing function 1 homolog B -0.50 0.05
FA2H fatty acid 2-hydroxylase -0.50 0.05


[0098] An unsupervised hierarchical clustering was performed to evaluate the strength of association between gene expression and radiosensitivity. Unsupervised hierarchical clustering identifies two distinct groups of cell lines and appropriately clusters the radioresistant cell lines (SF-2Gy >45%) distinct from the radiosensitive cell lines (SF-2Gy <45%) (SEE FIG. 8).

F. Signature development identifies novel radiation sensitivity-related genes.



[0099] Having identified genes whose expression was significantly correlated with radiation sensitivity as measured by clonogenic survival capacity, a number of these genes were validated as being differentially expressed at both the RNA and protein level (SEE FIG. 9), and experiments were performed to determine whether any of the identified associated genes played a role in the radioresistance phenotype. To determine whether the expression-to-radiosensitivity correlation played a meaningful role in the radiation resistant phenotype, the effect of gene expression knock-down in the radioresistant cell lines was interogated to determine the radiosensitizing effect of single gene manipulation. TACC1, RND3, and DTL were identified as being involved in the radiosensitivity of human breast cancer cell lines (SEE FIG. 9C). Expression of TACC1 and RND3 was increased in the cell lines that were found to be the most radioresistant in clonogenic survival assays. Knockdown of TACC1 and RND3 in the radioresistant cell line MDA-MB-231 using siRNA approaches identified significant radiosensitization with single gene knockdown in these cell lines (radiation enhancement ratios of 1.31-1.43 to 1.22-1.32, respectively; SEE FIG. 9D).

G. Refinement of the radiation sensitivity signature.



[0100] Having utilized a correlative approach to identify genes whose expression was significantly correlated with radiation sensitivity in vitro, experiments were conducted to further refine the signature by identifying genes contributing most significantly to the signature's performance and incorporating the outcomes data from a clinical cohort. To that end a human breast tumor dataset was identified for which gene expression levels were known and for which there was long-term follow-up, including local recurrence information provided (Servant, N., et al., Clin Cancer Res, 2012. 18(6): p. 1704-15.). This training dataset included 343 patients with greater than 10-year follow-up for whom long-term locoregional recurrence events was known. The majority of the patients had early-stage disease with small primary tumors (≤pT2) and all were managed surgically with breast conserving therapy followed by radiation. The majority of the patients (63%, 215 patients) had pathologically lymph node-negative disease, while a minority (37%, 128 patients) were lymph node-positive. The majority (68%) of these patients did not receive systemic chemotherapy and the locoregional recurrence rate in this population was relatively high (25%). Given the need for an increased number of locoregional recurrence events to train our signature, this cohort intentionally was selected with this bias to improve the training of our signature for future validation in independent datasets.

[0101] This training cohort was used to train and refine the radiation sensitivity signature to 51 genes (Table 6). In an effort to define the underlying mechanisms of radiation sensitivity in breast cancer, biological concepts were analyzed that were enriched in these 51 genes. It was found that biological concepts related to the cell cycle, DNA damage, and DNA were significantly enriched (SEE FIG. 10).
Table 6. Genes positively and negatively associated with clonogenic survival in breast cancer cell lines
Genes positively and negatively associated with clonogenic survival in breast cancer cell lines
23 Genes Positively Correlated with Radioresistance 
Gene SymbolGene Namecorrelation coeff.
ATM ataxia telangiectasia mutated 0.69
MTRF1 mitochondrial translational release factor 1 0.66
ZNF259 zinc finger protein 259 0.65
ZNF294 zinc finger protein 294 0.63
PBX3 pre-B-cell leukemia homeobox 3 0.61
NFIL3 nuclear factor, interleukin 3 regulated 0.61
PRKCA protein kinase C, alpha 0.61
LAMP2 lysosomal-associated membrane protein 2 0.59
SYBL1 synaptobrevin-like 1 0.58
DNAJB4 DnaJ (Hsp40) homolog, subfamily B, member 4 0.58
SARS seryl-tRNA synthetase 0.57
ITPR1 inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor, type 1 0.55
MSRA methionine sulfoxide reductase A 0.55
BIN1 bridging integrator 1 0.54
SERPINE2 serpin peptidase inhibitor, clade E member 2 0.54
EMP3 epithelial membrane protein 3 0.54
GALC galactosylceramidase 0.54
BCAR3 breast cancer anti-estrogen resistance 3 0.54
OSMR oncostatin M receptor 0.54
SDHD succinate dehydrogenase complex, subunit D 0.54
FZD2 frizzled homolog 2 (Drosophila) 0.52
SLC39A14 solute carrier family 39 (zinc transporter), member 14 0.52
PXMP4 peroxisomal membrane protein 4, 24kDa 0.52
28 Genes Negatively Correlated with Radioresistance 
Gene SynbolGene NameCorrelation Coeff.
RAB25 RAB25, member RAS oncogene family -0.5
SPC25 SPC25, NDC80 kinetochore complex component, homolog -0.5
ASF1B ASF1 anti-silencing function 1 homolog B -0.5
BATF basic leucine zipper transcription factor, ATF-like -0.51
MYO5C myosin VC -0.51
GINS2 GINS complex subunit 2 (Psf2 homolog) -0.51
KRT86 keratin 86 -0.52
HELLS helicase, lymphoid-specific -0.52
RAD51 RAD51 homolog (RecA homolog, E. coli) -0.52
TK1 thymidine kinase 1, soluble -0.53
MCM10 minichromosome maintenance complex component 10 -0.53
CDT1 chromatin licensing and DNA replication factor 1 -0.53
MKI67 antigen identified by monoclonal antibody Ki-67 -0.54
DNMT3B DNA (cytosine-5-)-methyltransferase 3 beta -0.54
RAB15 RAB15, member RAS onocogene family -0.54
BUB1B BUB1 budding uninhibited by benzimidazoles 1 homolog -0.55
RBPMS RNA binding protein with multiple splicing -0.55
PRC1 protein regulator of cytokinesis 1 -0.56
PDCD4 programmed cell death 4 -0.56
HOOK1 hook homolog 1 (Drosophila) -0.57
HOXC13 homeobox C13 -0.59
BLM Bloom syndrome -0.6
BTG2 BTG family, member 2 -0.6
TSPAN13 tetraspanin 13 -0.61
CPE carboxypeptidase E -0.65
COBL cordon-bleu homolog -0.67
DTL denticleless homolog -0.77
C4orf19 chromosome 4 open reading frame 19 -0.77


[0102] The performance of the radiation sensitivity signature in the training cohort was perfect with an ROC AUC of 0.99 (SEE FIG 11A,C). For internal cross-validation a Random Forest out-of-bag (OOB) prediction model was used. This technique accurately distinguished patients with recurrence after radiation from those without recurrence with a log-rank p-value <10-6 and hazard ratio (HR) = 2.5 (SEE FIG. 11B,D). On univariable and multivariable Cox regression analysis the radiosensitivity score predictions were the single most predictive clinical or pathologic variable, with a log-rank p-value of <0.0001 and HR = 2.8 in multivariable analysis (SEE FIG. 11E,F).

H. Independent validation of the radiation sensitivity signature.



[0103] An independent human breast tumor dataset was identified with gene expression and long term clinical outcomes that included locoregional recurrence in which to validate our radiation sensitivity signature (van de Vijver, M.J., et al., N Engl J Med, 2002. 347(25): p. 1999-2009.). The validation cohort included 295 patients with a minimum of 5-year follow-up with locoregional recurrence and overall survival endpoints. Similar to the training set, all the patients had early-stage disease (≤pT2) and the majority received adjuvant radiation therapy and did not receive systemic chemotherapy as standard of care. The locoregional recurrence rate in this population was lower than the training cohort, and included only 27 events (9%) which more closely reflect the event rates in current series.

[0104] Evaluation of the performance of the radiation sensitivity signature in the validation dataset demonstrated an AUC comparable to the out-of-bag cross-validation at 0.74 and was significantly better than any other clinical or pathologic parameter (FIG. 12A). The radiation sensitivity signature predicted those who would develop recurrence remarkably well, misclassifying only four events giving it a sensitivity of 85% and a negative predictive value (NPV) of 97% with a Log-rank p-value <0.001 (HR=6.1) for locoregional recurrence (SEE FIG. 12B). Once again, on univariable and multivariable analysis, the radiation sensitivity signature score is better than all other prognostic clinical or pathologic variables (SEE FIG 12C,D). It was found that the radiation sensitivity signature score was also highly prognostic for overall survival, with a Log-rank p-value <0.0001 with a HR=2.82. This finding is robust and the radiation sensitivity score remains prognostic on multivariate analysis for overall with a p-value <0.001 and the largest HR (2.2) of all the variables. Thus, not only was a radiation sensitivity signature identified that is highly sensitive and specific for local recurrence, but also is prognostic for overall survival in an independent breast cancer dataset.

I. Radiation sensitivity signature outperforms previously described radiation related signatures.



[0105] Previous groups have also attempted to develop a predictive radiation signatures. These signatures, though not derived in a breast cancer specific manner, have been applied to breast cancer datasets to assess the ability to risk-stratify breast cancer patients after radiation treatment (Eschrich, S.A., et al. Clin Cancer Res. 18(18): p. 5134-43.). The performance of a signature described herein against this previously reported signature in the training and validation cohort was analyzed; the breast cancer-specific signature described herein outperforms other signatures in both of these datasets (SEE FIGS. 13-14).

REFERENCES



[0106] 

Jemal, A., et al., Cancer statistics, 2009. CA Cancer J Clin, 2009. 59(4): p. 225-49.

Early Breast Cancer Trialists' Collaborative, G., et al., Effect of radiotherapy after breast-conserving surgery on 10-year recurrence and 15-year breast cancer death: meta-analysis of individual patient data for 10,801 women in 17 randomised trials. Lancet, 2011. 378(9804): p. 1707-16.

Sorlie, T., et al., Gene expression patterns of breast carcinomas distinguish tumor subclasses with clinical implications. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2001. 98(19): p. 10869-74.

Sorlie, T., et al., Repeated observation of breast tumor subtypes in independent gene expression data sets. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2003. 100(14): p. 8418-23.

Cancer Genome Atlas, N., Comprehensive molecular portraits of human breast tumours. Nature, 2012. 490(7418): p. 61-70.

Kyndi, M., et al., Estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, HER-2, and response to postmastectomy radiotherapy in high-risk breast cancer: the Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group. J Clin Oncol, 2008. 26(9): p. 1419-26.

Eschrich, S.A., et al., Validation of a radiosensitivity molecular signature in breast cancer. Clin Cancer Res. 18(18): p. 5134-43.

Naderi, A., et al., A gene-expression signature to predict survival in breast cancer across independent data sets. Oncogene, 2007. 26(10): p. 1507-16.

Weichselbaum, R.R., et al., An interferon-related gene signature for DNA damage resistance is a predictive marker for chemotherapy and radiation for breast cancer. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2008. 105(47): p. 18490-5.

Torres-Roca, J.F., et al., Prediction of radiation sensitivity using a gene expression classifier. Cancer Res, 2005. 65(16): p. 7169-76.

Servant, N., et al., Search for a gene expression signature of breast cancer local recurrence in young women. Clin Cancer Res, 2012. 18(6): p. 1704-15.

Hu, X., et al., Genetic alterations and oncogenic pathways associated with breast cancer subtypes. Mol Cancer Res, 2009. 7(4): p. 511-22.

Neve, R.M., et al., A collection of breast cancer cell lines for the study of functionally distinct cancer subtypes. Cancer Cell, 2006. 10(6): p. 515-27.

van de Vijver, M.J., et al., A gene-expression signature as a predictor of survival in breast cancer. N Engl J Med, 2002. 347(25): p. 1999-2009.

Clarke, M., et al., Effects of radiotherapy and of differences in the extent of surgery for early breast cancer on local recurrence and 15-year survival: an overview of the randomised trials. Lancet, 2005. 366(9503): p. 2087-106.

Kandoth, C., et al., Mutational landscape and significance across 12 major cancer types. Nature, 2013. 502(7471): p. 333-9.

Lawrence, M.S., et al., Discovery and saturation analysis of cancer genes across 21 tumour types. Nature, 2014. 505(7484): p. 495-501.

Wistuba, II, et al., Comparison of features of human breast cancer cell lines and their corresponding tumors. Clin Cancer Res, 1998. 4(12): p. 2931-8.

Boeckman, H.J., K.S. Trego, and J.J. Turchi, Cisplatin sensitizes cancer cells to ionizing radiation via inhibition of nonhomologous end joining. Mol Cancer Res, 2005. 3(5): p. 277-85.

Lawrence, T.S., A.W. Blackstock, and C. McGinn, The mechanism of action of radiosensitization of conventional chemotherapeutic agents. Semin Radiat Oncol, 2003. 13(1): p. 13-21.

Gonzalez de Castro, D., et al., Personalized cancer medicine: molecular diagnostics, predictive biomarkers, and drug resistance. Clin Pharmacol Ther, 2013. 93(3): p. 252-9.

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Han, S., et al., Targeted radiosensitization of ETS fusion-positive prostate cancer through PARP1 inhibition. Neoplasia, 2013. 15(10): p. 1207-17.

Fertil, B., et al., Mean inactivation dose: a useful concept for intercomparison of human cell survival curves. Radiat Res, 1984. 99(1): p. 73-84.

Brenner, J.C., et al., Mechanistic rationale for inhibition of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase in ETS gene fusion-positive prostate cancer. Cancer Cell, 2011. 19(5): p. 664-78.




Claims

1. A method for assessing the radiosensitivity of a breast cancer cell comprising detecting expression of a plurality genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance wherein said genes indicative of radiosensitivity are the 51 genes in Table 6.
 
2. The method of claim 1, wherein gene expression is detected by measuring mRNA levels.
 
3. The method of claim 1, wherein gene expression is detected by measuring protein levels.
 
4. The method of claim 1, wherein the expression of said plurality genes indicative of radiosensitivity and/or radioresistance are differentially weighted to determine the radiosensitivity of a cell.
 
5. A method of determining a treatment course for a subject suffering from breast cancer comprising:

(a) assessing the radiosensitivity of the cancer by the method of claim 1; and

(b) selecting a suitable treatment course based on the radiosensitivity of the cancer.


 
6. Use of a kit in the method of any of claims 1-5, wherein said kit comprises reagents for conducting said method and does not include reagents for analyzing other markers than said 51 genes in said Table 6.
 
7. The use of claim 6, wherein said kit comprises reagents selected from the group consisting of probes, primers and buffers, antibodies and aptamers.
 
8. The method of claim 1, wherein said radiosensitivity assessment is applied to a population of breast cancer cells within a subject, said method further comprising:

(a) receiving a sample obtained from the population of cells;

(b) quantitating said detected level of expression of said plurality of 51 genes in Table 6 indicative of radiosensitivity in said sample; and

(c) quantitating the level of expression of said 51 genes in Table 6 indicative of radioresistance in said sample.


 
9. The method of claim 8, further comprising:
(d) using a computer-based analysis program to convert the data generated in steps (b) and (c) into an radiosensitivity assessment for the population of cells from which the sample was obtained.
 
10. The method of claim 9, further comprising:
(e) generating a report characterizing the sample as having been obtained from a radiosensitive population of cells within a subject.
 


Ansprüche

1. Verfahren zum Bewerten der Strahlungsempfindlichkeit einer Brustkrebszelle, umfassend das Detektieren der Expression einer Vielzahl von Genen, die für Strahlungsempfindlichkeit und/oder Strahlungsresistenz indikativ sind, wobei die Gene, die eine Strahlungsempfindlichkeit indizieren, die 51 Gene in Tabelle 6 sind.
 
2. Verfahren nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Genexpression durch Messen von mRNA-Niveaus nachgewiesen wird.
 
3. Verfahren nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Genexpression durch Messen von Proteinniveaus nachgewiesen wird.
 
4. Verfahren nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Expression der Vielzahl von Genen, die für Strahlungsempfindlichkeit und/oder Strahlungsresistenz indikativ sind, differentiell gewichtet werden, um die Strahlungsempfindlichkeit einer Zelle zu bestimmen.
 
5. Verfahren zum Bestimmen eines Behandlungsverlaufs für eine an Brustkrebs erkrankte Person, umfassend:

(a) die Bewertung der Strahlungsempfindlichkeit des Krebses nach dem Verfahren nach Anspruch 1; und

(b) die Auswahl eines geeigneten Behandlungsverlaufs auf der Grundlage der Strahlungsempfindlichkeit des Krebses.


 
6. Verwendung eines Kits in einem Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 1-5, wobei der Kit Reagenzien zur Durchführung des Verfahrens umfasst und keine Reagenzien zur Analyse anderer Marker als der 51 Gene in der Tabelle 6 enthält.
 
7. Verwendung eines Kits nach Anspruch 6, wobei der Kit Reagenzien umfasst, die ausgewählt sind aus der Gruppe bestehend aus Sonden, Primern und Puffern, Antikörpern und Aptameren.
 
8. Verfahren nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Strahlungsempfindlichkeitsbewertung auf eine Population von Brustkrebszellen innerhalb eines Patienten angewendet wird, wobei das Verfahren des Weiteren umfasst:

(a) Erhalten einer Probe, die aus der Population von Zellen gewonnen wurde;

(b) Quantifizieren des erfassten Expressionsniveaus der Vielzahl von 51 Genen in Tabelle 6, die die Strahlungsempfindlichkeit in der Probe indizieren; und

(c) Quantifizieren des Expressionsniveaus der 51 Gene in Tabelle 6, die die Strahlungsresistenz in der Probe indizieren.


 
9. Verfahren nach Anspruch 8, das des Weiteren umfasst:
(d) Verwenden eines computergestützten Analyseprogramms zum Umwandeln der in den Schritten (b) und (c) erzeugten Daten in eine Strahlungsempfindlichkeitsbewertung für die Population von Zellen, aus denen die Probe gewonnen wurde.
 
10. Verfahren nach Anspruch 9, das des Weiteren umfasst:
(e) Erzeugen eines Reports, der die Probe als aus einer strahlungsempfindlichen Population von Zellen innerhalb einer Person gewonnen charakterisiert.
 


Revendications

1. Procédé d'évaluation de la radiosensibilité d'une cellule de cancer du sein comprenant la détection de l'expression d'une pluralité de gènes représentatifs de la radiosensibilité et/ou de la radiorésistance, lesdits gènes représentatifs de la radiosensibilité étant les 51 gènes dans le tableau 6.
 
2. Procédé de la revendication 1, dans lequel l'expression génique est détectée par mesure de niveaux d'ARNm.
 
3. Procédé de la revendication 1, dans lequel l'expression génique est détectée par mesure de niveaux de protéines.
 
4. Procédé de la revendication 1, dans lequel l'expression de ladite pluralité de gènes représentatifs de la radiosensibilité et/ou de la radiorésistance est pondérée de façon différentielle pour déterminer la radiosensibilité d'une cellule.
 
5. Procédé de détermination d'un traitement pour un sujet souffrant du cancer du sein comprenant :

(a) l'évaluation de la radiosensibilité du cancer par le procédé de la revendication 1 ; et

(b) la sélection d'un traitement approprié sur la base de la radiosensibilité du cancer.


 
6. Utilisation d'une trousse dans le procédé de l'une quelconque des revendications 1 à 5, ladite trousse comprenant des réactifs destinés à conduire ledit procédé et ne comportant pas de réactifs destinés à analyser d'autres marqueurs que lesdits 51 gènes dans ledit tableau 6.
 
7. Utilisation de la revendication 6, dans laquelle ladite trousse comprend des réactifs choisis dans le groupe constitué par des sondes, des amorces et des tampons, des anticorps et des aptamères.
 
8. Procédé de la revendication 1, dans lequel ladite évaluation de la radiosensibilité est appliquée à une population de cellules de cancer du sein dans le corps d'un sujet, ledit procédé comprenant en outre :

(a) la réception d'un échantillon obtenu à partir de la population de cellules ;

(b) la quantification dudit niveau détecté d'expression de ladite pluralité de 51 gènes dans le tableau 6 représentatifs de la radiosensibilité dans ledit échantillon ; et

(c) la quantification du niveau d'expression desdits 51 gènes dans le tableau 6 représentatifs de la radiorésistance dans ledit échantillon.


 
9. Procédé de la revendication 8, comprenant en outre :
(d) l'utilisation d'un programme d'analyse informatique pour transformer les données générées aux étapes (b) et (c) en une évaluation de la radiosensibilité pour la population de cellules à partir de laquelle l'échantillon a été obtenu.
 
10. Procédé de la revendication 9, comprenant en outre :
(e) la génération d'un rapport caractérisant l'échantillon comme ayant été obtenu à partir d'une population radiosensible de cellules dans le corps d'un sujet.
 




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REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

Patent documents cited in the description




Non-patent literature cited in the description