Discovery of cancer driver genes based on nucleotide context
Eric S Lander,
Eliezer M. Van Allen,
Shamil R. Sunyaev
Posted 04 Dec 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/485292 (published DOI: 10.1038/s41588-019-0572-y)
Posted 04 Dec 2018
Many cancer genomes contain large numbers of somatic mutations, but few of these mutations drive tumor development. Current approaches to identify cancer driver genes are largely based on mutational recurrence, i.e. they search for genes with an increased number of nonsynonymous mutations relative to the local background mutation rate. Multiple studies have noted that the sensitivity of recurrence-based methods is limited in tumors with high background mutation rates, because passenger mutations dilute their statistical power. Here, we observe that passenger mutations tend to occur in characteristic nucleotide sequence contexts, while driver mutations follow a different distribution pattern determined by the location of functionally relevant genomic positions along the protein-coding sequence. To discover new cancer genes, we searched for genes with an excess of mutations in unusual nucleotide contexts that deviate from the characteristic context around passenger mutations. By applying this statistical framework to whole-exome sequencing data from 12,004 tumors, we discovered a long tail of novel candidate cancer genes with mutation frequencies as low as 1% and functional supporting evidence. Our results show that considering both the number and the nucleotide context around mutations helps identify novel cancer driver genes, particularly in tumors with high background mutation rates.
- Downloaded 1,170 times
- Download rankings, all-time:
- Site-wide: 18,916
- In genetics: 891
- Year to date:
- Site-wide: 89,010
- Since beginning of last month:
- Site-wide: 57,564
Downloads over time
Distribution of downloads per paper, site-wide
- 27 Nov 2020: The website and API now include results pulled from medRxiv as well as bioRxiv.
- 18 Dec 2019: We're pleased to announce PanLingua, a new tool that enables you to search for machine-translated bioRxiv preprints using more than 100 different languages.
- 21 May 2019: PLOS Biology has published a community page about Rxivist.org and its design.
- 10 May 2019: The paper analyzing the Rxivist dataset has been published at eLife.
- 1 Mar 2019: We now have summary statistics about bioRxiv downloads and submissions.
- 8 Feb 2019: Data from Altmetric is now available on the Rxivist details page for every preprint. Look for the "donut" under the download metrics.
- 30 Jan 2019: preLights has featured the Rxivist preprint and written about our findings.
- 22 Jan 2019: Nature just published an article about Rxivist and our data.
- 13 Jan 2019: The Rxivist preprint is live!