Genomic, Epigenomic, and Transcriptomic Profiling towards Identifying Omics Features and Specific Biomarkers That Distinguish Uterine Leiomyosarcoma and Leiomyoma at Molecular Levels

Sarcoma. 2015;2015:412068. doi: 10.1155/2015/412068. Epub 2015 Dec 28.

Abstract

Uterine leiomyosarcoma (LMS) is the worst malignancy among the gynecologic cancers. Uterine leiomyoma (LM), a benign tumor of myometrial origin, is the most common among women of childbearing age. Because of their similar symptoms, it is difficult to preoperatively distinguish the two conditions only by ultrasound and pelvic MRI. While histopathological diagnosis is currently the main approach used to distinguish them postoperatively, unusual histologic variants of LM tend to be misdiagnosed as LMS. Therefore, development of molecular diagnosis as an alternative or confirmatory means will help to diagnose LMS more accurately. We adopted omics-based technologies to identify genome-wide features to distinguish LMS from LM and revealed that copy number, gene expression, and DNA methylation profiles successfully distinguished these tumors. LMS was found to possess features typically observed in malignant solid tumors, such as extensive chromosomal abnormalities, overexpression of cell cycle-related genes, hypomethylation spreading through large genomic regions, and frequent hypermethylation at the polycomb group target genes and protocadherin genes. We also identified candidate expression and DNA methylation markers, which will facilitate establishing postoperative molecular diagnostic tests based on conventional quantitative assays. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of establishing such tests and the possibility of developing preoperative and noninvasive methods.