ATM, ATR and DNA-PKcs expressions correlate to adverse clinical outcomes in epithelial ovarian cancers

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Abstract

Background: Ataxia-telangiectasia mutated (ATM), ataxia-telangiectasia mutated and rad3 related (ATR) and DNA-dependent protein kinase catalytic sub-unit (DNA-PKcs) play critical roles in DNA damage response (DDR) by linking DNA damage sensing to DDR effectors that regulate cell cycle progression and DNA repair. Our objective was to evaluate if ATM, ATR and DNA-PKcs expressions could predict response to therapy and clinical outcome in epithelial ovarian cancers. Methods: We investigated ATM, ATR, and DNA-PKcs expressions in ovarian epithelial cancers [protein expression (n = 194 patients), mRNA expression (n = 156 patients)] and correlated to clinicopathological outcomes as well as expression of X-ray repair cross-complementing protein 1 (XRCC1), cell division cycle-45 (CDC45), cyclin-dependent kinase 1(CDK1) and Ki-67 in tumours. Results: High ATM protein expression was associated with serous cystadenocarcinomas (p = 0.021) and platinum resistance (p = 0.017). High DNA-PKcs protein expression was associated with serous cystadenocarcinomas (p = 0.006) and advanced stage tumours (p = 0.018). High ATM protein (p = 0.001), high ATM mRNA (p = 0.018), high DNA-PKcs protein (p = 0.002), high DNA-PKcs mRNA (p = 0.044) and high ATR protein (p = 0.001) expressions are correlated with poor ovarian cancer specific survival (OCSS). In multivariate Cox model, high DNA-PKcs (p = 0.006) and high ATR (p = 0.043) protein expressions remain independently associated with poor OCSS. Conclusions: ATM, ATR and DNA-PKcs expressions may have prognostic and predictive significances in epithelial ovarian cancer. General significance: The data presented here provides evidence that ATM, ATR and DNA-PKcs involved in DDR are not only promising biomarkers but are also rational targets for personalized therapy in ovarian cancer.

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Abdel-Fatah, T. M. A., Arora, A., Moseley, P., Coveney, C., Perry, C., Johnson, K., … Madhusudan, S. (2014). ATM, ATR and DNA-PKcs expressions correlate to adverse clinical outcomes in epithelial ovarian cancers. BBA Clinical, 2, 10–17. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbacli.2014.08.001

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