Vascular malformations are part of overgrowth syndromes characterized by somatic mosaic mutations or rarely by germline mutations. Due to their similarities and diversity, clinicopathological classification can be challenging. A comprehensive targeted Next Generation Sequencing screen using Unique Molecular Identifiers with a technical sensitivity of 1% mutant alleles was performed for frequently mutated positions in ≥21 genes on 319 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded samples. In 132 out of 319 cases pathogenic mosaic mutations were detected affecting genes previously linked to vascular malformations e.g. PIK3CA (n=80), TEK (TIE2) (n=11), AKT1 (n=1), GNAQ (n=7), GNA11 (n=4), IDH1 (n=3), KRAS (n=9), and NRAS (n=1). Six cases harbored a combination of mutations in PIK3CA and in GNA11 (n=2), GNAQ (n=2), or IDH1 (n=2). Aberrations in PTEN and RASA1 with a variant allele frequency approaching 50% suggestive of germline origin were identified in six out of 102 cases tested; four contained a potential second hit at a lower allele frequency. Ninety-one of the total 142 pathogenic mutations were present at a variant allele frequency <10% illustrating the importance of sensitive molecular analysis. Clinicopathological characteristics showed a broad spectrum and overlap when correlated with molecular data. Sensitive screening of recurrently mutated genes in vascular malformations may help to confirm the diagnosis and reveals potential therapeutic options with a significant contribution of PIK3CA/mTOR and RAS-MAPK pathway mutations. The co-existence of two activating pathogenic mutations in parallel pathways illustrates potential treatment challenges and underlines the importance of multigene testing. Detected germline mutations have major clinical impact.
Keywords: molecular genetics; mosaic mutations; overgrowth syndromes; vascular malformations.
© 2019 The Authors. Genes, Chromosomes & Cancer published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.