Differential expression of DNA repair genes in prognostically-favorable versus unfavorable uveal melanoma

Mehmet Dogrusöz, Andrea Ruschel Trasel, Jinfeng Cao, Selҫuk Ҫolak, Sake I. van Pelt, Wilma G.M. Kroes, Amina F.A.S. Teunisse, Samar Alsafadi, Sjoerd G. van Duinen, Gregorius P.M. Luyten, Pieter A. van der Velden, Adriana Amaro, Ulrich Pfeffer, Aart G. Jochemsen, Martine J. Jager

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Expression of DNA repair genes was studied in uveal melanoma (UM) in order to identify genes that may play a role in metastases formation. We searched for genes that are differentially expressed between tumors with a favorable and unfavorable prognosis. Gene-expression profiling was performed on 64 primary UM from the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC), Leiden, The Netherlands. The expression of 121 genes encoding proteins involved in DNA repair pathways was analyzed: a total of 44 genes differed between disomy 3 and monosomy 3 tumors. Results were validated in a cohort from Genoa and Paris and the The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) cohort. Expression of the PRKDC, WDR48, XPC, and BAP1 genes was significantly associated with clinical outcome after validation. PRKDC was highly expressed in metastasizing UM (p < 0.001), whereas WDR48, XPC, and BAP1 were lowly expressed (p < 0.001, p = 0.006, p = 0.003, respectively). Low expression of WDR48 and XPC was related to a large tumor diameter (p = 0.01 and p = 0.004, respectively), and a mixed/epithelioid cell type (p = 0.007 and p = 0.03, respectively). We conclude that the expression of WDR48, XPC, and BAP1 is significantly lower in UM with an unfavorable prognosis, while these tumors have a significantly higher expression of PRKDC. Pharmacological inhibition of DNA-PKcs resulted in decreased survival of UM cells. PRKDC may be involved in proliferation, invasion and metastasis of UM cells. Unraveling the role of DNA repair genes may enhance our understanding of UM biology and result in the identification of new therapeutic targets.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1104
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2019


  • BAP1
  • DNA repair
  • DNA-PK
  • Oncology
  • Prognosis
  • Uveal melanoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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