Specific targeting of point mutations in EGFR L858R-positive lung cancer by CRISPR/Cas9
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AbstractCancer cells are defined genetically by the mutations they harbor, commonly single nucleotide substitutions. Therapeutic approaches which specifically target cancer cells by recognizing these defining genetic aberrations are expected to exhibit minimal side-effects. However, current protein-based targeted therapy is greatly limited by the range of genes that can be targeted, as well as by acquired resistance. We hypothesized that a therapeutic oligonucleotide-based strategy may address this need of specific cancer targeting. We used CRISPR/Cas9 system to target a commonly occurring EGFR point mutation, L858R, with an oligonucleotide guide that recognizes L858R as the suitable protospacer-adjacent motif (PAM) sequence for DNA cleavage. We found that this strategy, which utilized PAM to differentiate cancer mutation from normal, afforded high specificity to the extent of a single nucleotide substitution. The anti-L858R vehicle resulted in selective genome cleavage only in L858R mutant cells, as detected by Sanger sequencing and T7 Endonuclease I assay. Wild-type cells were unaffected by the same treatment. Digital PCR revealed 37.9 ± 8.57% of L858R gene copies were targeted in mutant. Only treated mutant cells, but not wild-type cells, showed reduction in EGFR expression and decreased cell proliferation. Treated mutant cells also formed smaller tumor load in vivo. This targeting approach is expected to be able to target a significant subset of the 15–35% cancer mutations with C > G, A > G, and T > G point mutations. Thus, this strategy may serve as a useful approach to target cancer-defining mutations with specificity, to the extent of differentiating the change of a single nucleotide.
Acceptance Date14/02/2018
All Author(s) ListAlvin Ho-Kwan Cheung, Chit Chow, Jinglin Zhang, Yuhang Zhou, Tingting Huang, Kayla Ching-Kei Ng, Terry Cho-Tsun Or, Yoyo Yao Yao, Yujuan Dong, Jackie Mei-Wah Fung, Lei Xiong, Aden Ka-Yin Chan, Wai-Ming Raymond Lung, Wei Kang, Ka-Fai To
Journal nameLaboratory Investigation
Volume Number98
Issue Number7
Pages968 - 976
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom

Last updated on 2021-16-09 at 01:20