Exomic sequencing identifies PALB2 as a pancreatic cancer susceptibility gene.
ABSTRACT Through complete sequencing of the protein-coding genes in a patient with familial pancreatic cancer, we identified a germline, truncating mutation in PALB2 that appeared responsible for this patient's predisposition to the disease. Analysis of 96 additional patients with familial pancreatic cancer revealed three distinct protein-truncating mutations, thereby validating the role of PALB2 as a susceptibility gene for pancreatic cancer. PALB2 mutations have been previously reported in patients with familial breast cancer, and the PALB2 protein is a binding partner for BRCA2. These results illustrate that complete, unbiased sequencing of protein-coding genes can lead to the identification of a gene responsible for a hereditary disease.
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ABSTRACT: BRCA2 mutations predispose carriers to breast and ovarian cancer and can also cause other cancers and Fanconi anemia. BRCA2 acts as a "caretaker" of genome integrity by enabling homologous recombination (HR)-based, error-free DNA double-strand break repair (DSBR) and intra-S phase DNA damage checkpoint control. Described here is the identification of PALB2, a BRCA2 binding protein. PALB2 colocalizes with BRCA2 in nuclear foci, promotes its localization and stability in key nuclear structures (e.g., chromatin and nuclear matrix), and enables its recombinational repair and checkpoint functions. In addition, multiple, germline BRCA2 missense mutations identified in breast cancer patients but of heretofore unknown biological/clinical consequence appear to disrupt PALB2 binding and disable BRCA2 HR/DSBR function. Thus, PALB2 licenses key cellular biochemical properties of BRCA2 and ensures its tumor suppression function.Molecular Cell 07/2006; 22(6):719-29. · 14.18 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: PALB2 interacts with BRCA2, and biallelic mutations in PALB2 (also known as FANCN), similar to biallelic BRCA2 mutations, cause Fanconi anemia. We identified monoallelic truncating PALB2 mutations in 10/923 individuals with familial breast cancer compared with 0/1,084 controls (P = 0.0004) and show that such mutations confer a 2.3-fold higher risk of breast cancer (95% confidence interval (c.i.) = 1.4-3.9, P = 0.0025). The results show that PALB2 is a breast cancer susceptibility gene and further demonstrate the close relationship of the Fanconi anemia-DNA repair pathway and breast cancer predisposition.Nature Genetics 03/2007; 39(2):165-7. · 35.53 Impact Factor
Article: Pancreatic cancer.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The past two decades have witnessed an explosion in our understanding of pancreatic cancer, and it is now clear that pancreatic cancer is a disease of inherited (germ-line) and somatic gene mutations. The genes mutated in pancreatic cancer include KRAS2, p16/CDKN2A, TP53, and SMAD4/DPC4, and these are accompanied by a substantial compendium of genomic and transcriptomic alterations that facilitate cell cycle deregulation, cell survival, invasion, and metastases. Pancreatic cancers do not arise de novo, and three distinct precursor lesions have been identified. Experimental models of pancreatic cancer have been developed in genetically engineered mice, which recapitulate the multistep progression of the cognate human disease. Although the putative cell of origin for pancreatic cancer remains elusive, minor populations of cells with stem-like properties have been identified that appear responsible for tumor initiation, metastases, and resistance of pancreatic cancer to conventional therapies.Annual Review of Pathology Mechanisms of Disease 02/2008; 3:157-88. · 20.00 Impact Factor