Original Article

Deep targeted sequencing analysis of hot spot mutations in non-small cell lung cancer patients from the Middle Eastern population

Pierre Khoueiry, Ghina Fakhri, Reem Akel, Majd El Assaad, Rami Mahfouz, Fadlo Khuri, Hassan Chami, Jason Petersen, Sarah Viet, Gareth Davies, Humam Kadara, Arafat Tfayli


Background: The overall 5-year survival of lung cancer remains dismal despite the current treatment regimens. Testing for driver mutations has become routine practice for oncologists due to the presence of targeted therapy readily available for patients. Deep targeted sequencing through next generation sequencing (NGS) is an adequate methodology to detect mutations at multi-genetic levels. The molecular pathology of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is poorly understood in the Middle East and, to date, no other reports have been published on deep targeted sequencing of lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) tissues.
Methods: Deep targeted sequencing using TruSeq Amplicon Cancer panel of 48 genes was performed on 85 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues from patients with LUAD who were treatment-naive at the time of the collection. Variants with an allele frequency higher than 10% were retained.
Results: Variant calling identified a total of 2,455 variants of which missense mutations were the most frequent (75.6%). All of our samples showed at least one mutation in one of the 10 most commonly mutated genes with FLT3 being the gene with the highest mutation rate (67%). TP53, KRAS and STK11 were the second, third and fourth most commonly mutated genes, respectively while EGFR mutation rate reached 22.4%.
Conclusions: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first hot spot profiling study on patients from this area. The frequencies of mutated genes presented in our study showed similarity to other reported outcomes. At least one mutation was detected in our cohort of LUAD.

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