The genomic landscape and evolution of endometrial carcinoma progression and abdominopelvic metastasis

Nat Genet. 2016 Aug;48(8):848-55. doi: 10.1038/ng.3602. Epub 2016 Jun 27.


Recent studies have detailed the genomic landscape of primary endometrial cancers, but the evolution of these cancers into metastases has not been characterized. We performed whole-exome sequencing of 98 tumor biopsies including complex atypical hyperplasias, primary tumors and paired abdominopelvic metastases to survey the evolutionary landscape of endometrial cancer. We expanded and reanalyzed The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) data, identifying new recurrent alterations in primary tumors, including mutations in the estrogen receptor cofactor gene NRIP1 in 12% of patients. We found that likely driver events were present in both primary and metastatic tissue samples, with notable exceptions such as ARID1A mutations. Phylogenetic analyses indicated that the sampled metastases typically arose from a common ancestral subclone that was not detected in the primary tumor biopsy. These data demonstrate extensive genetic heterogeneity in endometrial cancers and relative homogeneity across metastatic sites.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Abdominal Neoplasms / secondary
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics*
  • Disease Progression
  • Endometrial Hyperplasia / genetics*
  • Endometrial Hyperplasia / pathology
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / pathology
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Exome / genetics
  • Female
  • Genomics
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Humans
  • Mutation / genetics*
  • Pelvic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Pelvic Neoplasms / secondary
  • Phylogeny


  • Biomarkers, Tumor