Prostate cancer is clinically heterogeneous, ranging from indolent to lethal disease. Expression profiling previously defined three subtypes of prostate cancer, one (subtype-1) linked to clinically favorable behavior, and the others (subtypes-2 and -3) linked with a more aggressive form of the disease. To explore disease heterogeneity at the genomic level, we carried out array-based comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) on 64 prostate tumor specimens, including 55 primary tumors and 9 pelvic lymph node metastases. Unsupervised cluster analysis of DNA copy number alterations (CNA) identified recurrent aberrations, including a 6q15-deletion group associated with subtype-1 gene expression patterns and decreased tumor recurrence. Supervised analysis further disclosed distinct patterns of CNA among gene-expression subtypes, where subtype-1 tumors exhibited characteristic deletions at 5q21 and 6q15, and subtype-2 cases harbored deletions at 8p21 (NKX3-1) and 21q22 (resulting in TMPRSS2-ERG fusion). Lymph node metastases, predominantly subtype-3, displayed overall higher frequencies of CNA, and in particular gains at 8q24 (MYC) and 16p13, and loss at 10q23 (PTEN) and 16q23. Our findings reveal that prostate cancers develop via a limited number of alternative preferred genetic pathways. The resultant molecular genetic subtypes provide a new framework for investigating prostate cancer biology and explain in part the clinical heterogeneity of the disease.
View details for DOI 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-07-0673
View details for Web of Science ID 000249679500013
View details for PubMedID 17875689