Complete loss of BRCA1 or BRCA2 function is associated with sensitivity to DNA damaging agents. However, not all BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline mutation-associated tumors respond. Herein we report analyses of 160 BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline mutation-associated breast and ovarian tumors. Retention of the normal BRCA1 or BRCA2 allele (absence of locus-specific loss of heterozygosity (LOH)) is observed in 7% of BRCA1 ovarian, 16% of BRCA2 ovarian, 10% of BRCA1 breast, and 46% of BRCA2 breast tumors. These tumors have equivalent homologous recombination deficiency scores to sporadic tumors, significantly lower than scores in tumors with locus-specific LOH (ovarian, P = 0.0004; breast P < 0.0001, two-tailed Student's t-test). Absence of locus-specific LOH is associated with decreased overall survival in ovarian cancer patients treated with platinum chemotherapy (P = 0.01, log-rank test). Locus-specific LOH may be a clinically useful biomarker to predict primary resistance to DNA damaging agents in patients with germline BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)