March 2019—Using circulating cell-free fetal DNA to test for monogenic disorders: Screening for fetal chromosomal abnormalities can be performed by noninvasive methods in which fetal cell-free DNA (cfDNA) circulating in the maternal blood is isolated and analyzed. However, the standard of care for screening for monogenic diseases remains population-based carrier screening—testing the parents for their carrier status of deleterious genes.Read More »
February 2019—Evaluation of mutational processes and somatic driver mutations in cancer exomes: As next-generation sequencing-based tumor profiling gains popularity, multiple informative variables other than single-gene alterations will continue to be added to clinical reports.Read More »
Editors: Donna E. Hansel, MD, PhD, chief, Division of Anatomic Pathology, and professor, Department of Pathology, University of California, San Diego; James Solomon, MD, PhD, resident, Department of Pathology, UCSD; Richard Wong, MD, PhD, molecular pathology fellow, Department of Pathology, UCSD; and Sounak Gupta, MBBS, PhD, molecular pathology fellow, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York. Development of brain circuits ...Read More »
December 2018—Profiling of chromatin-accessibility landscape of primary cancers: The chromatin-accessibility profiles generated in this study by The Cancer Genome Atlas represent the largest pan-cancer effort to characterize the regulatory landscape of human cancers. The study primarily used an assay for transposase-accessible chromatin using sequencing (ATAC-seq).Read More »
November 2018—Common genetic variants contribute to risk of rare severe neurodevelopmental disorders: The traditional paradigm broadly classifies genetic diseases into rare disorders caused by a single gene variant and common disorders caused by complex interplay among multiple genes. However, recent research has shown that penetrance and disease phenotype, even in disorders thought to be monogenic, are affected by common genetic variation.Read More »
Cell-free DNA tumor mutational burden predicts efficacy of immune checkpoint inhibitors October 2018—Immune checkpoint inhibitors have emerged as a potent class of therapy for a variety of malignancies. The biologic rationale for these drugs is that somatic mutations, not necessarily in cancer driver genes, may accumulate in tumor cells, resulting in amino acid changes that create neoantigens (epitopes not present in normal cells during maturation of the immune system).Read More »
Ability of genetic alterations to predict development of acute myeloid leukemia
September 2018—Acute myeloid leukemia affects more than 60,000 people in the United States every year and has a mortality rate of more than 90 percent. It is the most common form of acute leukemia and is caused by unchecked growth of immature precursor cells in the bone marrow. These immature cells, or blasts, are myeloid precursors that often develop into dysfunctional, cancerous white blood cells that fill the bone marrow and spread into the blood.
Prevalence of clonal hematopoiesis mutations in tumor-only clinical genomic profiling of solid tumors
August 2018—Challenges to implementing next-generation sequencing-based comprehensive molecular profiling of solid tumors include reliably separating germline variants from somatic variants. This is an important consideration, particularly when a “tumor-only” profiling approach is used.
July 2018—Correlation between tumor mutation burden and efficacy of combination immunotherapy in nonsmall cell lung cancer: Checkpoint inhibitor therapy has dramatically improved outcomes in many cancer types, with treatments including antibodies against cytotoxic T-lymphocyte–associated protein 4 (CTLA-4), programmed cell death receptor-1 (PD-1), and its ligand (PD-L1).Read More »
June 2018—Genetics and pathogenesis of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma: Understanding the genetic basis of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma is important for understanding the pathogenesis of the disease and the molecular attributes that may influence therapeutic response.Read More »