Fusions involving oncogenes have been reported in gliomas and may serve as novel therapeutic targets. We aim to use RNA sequencing to interrogate a large cohort of gliomas for targetable genetic fusions.
Gliomas were profiled using the ArcherDx FusionPlex Assay at a CLIA certified lab (Caris Life Sciences) and 52 gene targets were analyzed. Fusions with preserved kinase domains were investigated.
Among 404 gliomas tested, 39 (9.7%) presented potentially targetable fusions, of which 24/226 (11%) of glioblastoma (GBM), 5/42 (12%) of anaplastic astrocytoma (AA), 2/25 (8%) of grade II astrocytoma and 3 of 7 (43%) of pilocytic astrocytoma (PA) harbored targetable fusions. In GBMs, 1 of 15 (6.7%) IDH-mutated tumors had a fusion while 22 of 175 (12.6%) IDH wild type tumors had fusions. 46 oligodendroglial tumors were profiled and no fusions were seen, which was lower than frequency of fusions in astrocytic tumors (34/300, p = 0.0236). The most frequent fusions seen involved FGFR3 (N = 12), including 10 FGFR3-TACC3 (1 AA, 6 GBM and 3 glioma NOS); 1 FGFR3-NBR1 (AA) and 1 FGFR3-BRAP (GBM). 11 fusions involving MET were seen, 10 in GBM and 1 in AA. The most common MET fusion was PTPRZ1-MET (1 in AA and 4 in GBM), followed by ST7-MET (N = 3, GBM), CAPZA2-Met (N = 2, GBM) and TPR-MET (N = 1, GBM). 8 NTRK fusions were seen; 1 involving NTRK1 (BCANNTRK1, PA), 6 NTRK2 (1 NOS1AP-NTRK2 in AA; GKAP1-NTRK2, KCTD8-NTRK2, TBC1D2- NTRK2 and SOSTM1-NTRK2, 1 each in GBM and 1 VCAN-NTRK2 in grade II astrocytoma) and 1 NTRK3 (EML4-NTRK3 in GBM). EGFR fusions (2 EGFRSEPT14 and 1 EGFR-VWC2) were seen in 3 GBMs, BRAF in 2 (1 LOC100093631-BRAF in PA and 1 ZSCAN23-BRAF in glioma NOS) and PDGFRA (RAB3IP-PDGFRA, in GBM) in 1. C11orf95-RELA fusions were seen in 2 of 3 grade III ependymomas but not in the 2 grade II ependymomas.
We report targetable fusion genes involving NTRK, MET, EGFR, FGFR3, BRAF and PDGFRA including novel fusions that haven’t been previously described in gliomas (e.g., EGFR-VWC2; FGFR3-NBR1). Fusions were seen in over 10% of astrocytic tumors, while none was seen oligodendrogliomas. Identification of such kinase associated fusion transcripts may allow us to exploit therapeutic opportunities with targeted therapies in gliomas.Download Publication