A new study has detected NRG1 fusions in a small percentage of multiple solid tumors types.1 These gene fusions could represent novel oncogenic drivers, according to study researchers.
The researchers conducted a retrospective analysis looking at more than 21,000 tumor specimens after RNA sequencing using the ArcherDx fusion assay (Archer FusionPlex Solid Tumor® panel) to detect NRG1 fusions.
Of the analyzed tumors, 41 (0.2%) harbored a NRG1 fusion. “Of the 41 NRG1 fusions identified, 34 were in-frame, 3 were out-of-frame variants of unknown significance, and 4 were translated variants,” the authors wrote.
The greatest incidence of NRG1 fusions occurred in non-small cell lung cancer (25 of 41); however, the researchers noted that this represented only a very small percentage (0.3%) of lung cancer cases tested.
NRG1 fusions were also identified in samples from gallbladder cancer (0.5% of tested gallbladder cases), renal cell carcinoma (0.5%), bladder cancer (0.1%), ovarian cancer (0.4%), pancreatic cancer (0.5%), breast cancer (0.2%), neuroendocrine tumor, sarcoma (0.2%), and colorectal cancer (0.1%).
A number of fusion partners were also identified across tumor types. In NSCLC, the most common fusion partner was CD74; other partners detected in NSCLC included SDC4, SLC3A2, TNC, MDK, ATP1B1, and 6 other types of fusions.
NRG1 fusions were mutually exclusive from other common oncogenic alterations including EGFR, KRAS, ALK, ROS1, and RET.
- Jonna S, Feldman RA, Swensen J, et al. Detection of NRG1 gene fusions in solid tumors [published online April 15, 2019]. Clin Cancer Res. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-19-0160