RNA sequencing profiles and diagnostic signatures linked with response to ramucirumab in gastric cancer

Cold Spring Harb Mol Case Stud. 2020 Apr 1;6(2):a004945. doi: 10.1101/mcs.a004945. Print 2020 Apr.


Gastric cancer (GC) is the fifth-ranked cancer type by associated mortality. The proportion of early diagnosis is low, and most patients are diagnosed at the advanced stages. First-line therapy standardly includes fluoropyrimidines and platinum compounds with trastuzumab for HER2-positive cases. For recurrent disease, there are several alternative options including ramucirumab, a monoclonal therapeutic antibody that inhibits VEGF-mediated tumor angiogenesis by binding with VEGFR2, alone or in combination with other cancer drugs. However, overall response rate following ramucirumab or its combinations is 30%-80% of the patients, suggesting that personalization of drug prescription is needed to increase efficacy of treatment. We report here original tumor RNA sequencing profiles for 15 advanced GC patients linked with data on clinical response to ramucirumab or its combinations. Three genes showed differential expression in the tumors for responders versus nonresponders: CHRM3, LRFN1, and TEX15 Of them, CHRM3 was up-regulated in the responders. Using the bioinformatic platform Oncobox we simulated ramucirumab efficiency and compared output model results with actual tumor response data. An agreement was observed between predicted and real clinical outcomes (AUC ≥ 0.7). These results suggest that RNA sequencing may be used to personalize the prescription of ramucirumab for GC and indicate potential molecular mechanisms underlying ramucirumab resistance. The RNA sequencing profiles obtained here are fully compatible with the previously published Oncobox Atlas of Normal Tissue Expression (ANTE) data.

Keywords: stomach cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological / therapeutic use
  • Biomarkers, Tumor*
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Biological
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Progression-Free Survival
  • ROC Curve
  • Sequence Analysis, RNA*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Stomach Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / mortality
  • Transcriptome
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2 / antagonists & inhibitors


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • ramucirumab
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2