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      Chromosome Instability; Implications in Cancer Development, Progression, and Clinical Outcomes

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          Chromosome instability (CIN) refers to an ongoing rate of chromosomal changes and is a driver of genetic, cell-to-cell heterogeneity. It is an aberrant phenotype that is intimately associated with cancer development and progression. The presence, extent, and level of CIN has tremendous implications for the clinical management and outcomes of those living with cancer. Despite its relevance in cancer, there is still extensive misuse of the term CIN, and this has adversely impacted our ability to identify and characterize the molecular determinants of CIN. Though several decades of genetic research have provided insight into CIN, the molecular determinants remain largely unknown, which severely limits its clinical potential. In this review, we provide a definition of CIN, describe the two main types, and discuss how it differs from aneuploidy. We subsequently detail its impact on cancer development and progression, and describe how it influences metastatic potential with reference to cancer prognosis and outcomes. Finally, we end with a discussion of how CIN induces genetic heterogeneity to influence the use and efficacy of several precision medicine strategies, including patient and risk stratification, as well as its impact on the acquisition of drug resistance and disease recurrence.

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          Hallmarks of Cancer: The Next Generation

          The hallmarks of cancer comprise six biological capabilities acquired during the multistep development of human tumors. The hallmarks constitute an organizing principle for rationalizing the complexities of neoplastic disease. They include sustaining proliferative signaling, evading growth suppressors, resisting cell death, enabling replicative immortality, inducing angiogenesis, and activating invasion and metastasis. Underlying these hallmarks are genome instability, which generates the genetic diversity that expedites their acquisition, and inflammation, which fosters multiple hallmark functions. Conceptual progress in the last decade has added two emerging hallmarks of potential generality to this list-reprogramming of energy metabolism and evading immune destruction. In addition to cancer cells, tumors exhibit another dimension of complexity: they contain a repertoire of recruited, ostensibly normal cells that contribute to the acquisition of hallmark traits by creating the "tumor microenvironment." Recognition of the widespread applicability of these concepts will increasingly affect the development of new means to treat human cancer. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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            Global Cancer Statistics 2018: GLOBOCAN Estimates of Incidence and Mortality Worldwide for 36 Cancers in 185 Countries

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              Intratumor heterogeneity and branched evolution revealed by multiregion sequencing.

              Intratumor heterogeneity may foster tumor evolution and adaptation and hinder personalized-medicine strategies that depend on results from single tumor-biopsy samples. To examine intratumor heterogeneity, we performed exome sequencing, chromosome aberration analysis, and ploidy profiling on multiple spatially separated samples obtained from primary renal carcinomas and associated metastatic sites. We characterized the consequences of intratumor heterogeneity using immunohistochemical analysis, mutation functional analysis, and profiling of messenger RNA expression. Phylogenetic reconstruction revealed branched evolutionary tumor growth, with 63 to 69% of all somatic mutations not detectable across every tumor region. Intratumor heterogeneity was observed for a mutation within an autoinhibitory domain of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) kinase, correlating with S6 and 4EBP phosphorylation in vivo and constitutive activation of mTOR kinase activity in vitro. Mutational intratumor heterogeneity was seen for multiple tumor-suppressor genes converging on loss of function; SETD2, PTEN, and KDM5C underwent multiple distinct and spatially separated inactivating mutations within a single tumor, suggesting convergent phenotypic evolution. Gene-expression signatures of good and poor prognosis were detected in different regions of the same tumor. Allelic composition and ploidy profiling analysis revealed extensive intratumor heterogeneity, with 26 of 30 tumor samples from four tumors harboring divergent allelic-imbalance profiles and with ploidy heterogeneity in two of four tumors. Intratumor heterogeneity can lead to underestimation of the tumor genomics landscape portrayed from single tumor-biopsy samples and may present major challenges to personalized-medicine and biomarker development. Intratumor heterogeneity, associated with heterogeneous protein function, may foster tumor adaptation and therapeutic failure through Darwinian selection. (Funded by the Medical Research Council and others.).

                Author and article information

                Cancers (Basel)
                Cancers (Basel)
                29 March 2020
                April 2020
                : 12
                : 4
                [1 ]Research Institute in Oncology & Hematology, CancerCare Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3E 0V9, Canada; raghvendra2375@
                [2 ]Department of Biochemistry & Medical Genetics, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3E 0J9, Canada
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: Kirk.McManus@ ; Tel.: +1-204-787-2833
                © 2020 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (



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