He H, Li W, Wu D, Nagy R, Liyanarachchi S, Akagi K, Jendrzejewski J, Jiao H, Hoag K, Wen B, Srinivas M, Waidyaratne G, Wang R, Wojcicka A, Lattimer IR, Stachlewska E, Czetwertynska M, Dlugosinska J, Gierlikowski W, Ploski R, Krawczyk M, Jazdzewski K, Kere J, Symer DE, Jin V, Wang Q, de la Chapelle A
PLoS ONE 8 (5) e61920 [2013-05-14; online 2013-05-14]
Thyroid cancer shows high heritability but causative genes remain largely unknown. According to a common hypothesis the genetic predisposition to thyroid cancer is highly heterogeneous; being in part due to many different rare alleles. Here we used linkage analysis and targeted deep sequencing to detect a novel single-nucleotide mutation in chromosome 4q32 (4q32A>C) in a large pedigree displaying non-medullary thyroid carcinoma (NMTC). This mutation is generally ultra-rare; it was not found in 38 NMTC families, in 2676 sporadic NMTC cases or 2470 controls. The mutation is located in a long-range enhancer element whose ability to bind the transcription factors POU2F and YY1 is significantly impaired, with decreased activity in the presence of the C- allele compared with the wild type A-allele. An enhancer RNA (eRNA) is transcribed in thyroid tissue from this region and is greatly downregulated in NMTC tumors. We suggest that this is an example of an ultra-rare mutation predisposing to thyroid cancer with high penetrance.