The landscape of genetic alterations of UVB?induced skin tumors in DNA repair?deficient mice

Abstract

Non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) is mainly caused by ultraviolet (UV)-induced somatic mutations and is characterized by UV signature modifications. Xeroderma pigmentosum group A (Xpa) knockout mice exhibit extreme UV-induced photo-skin carcinogenesis, along with a photosensitive phenotype. We performed whole-exome sequencing (WES) of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) samples after repetitive ultraviolet B (UVB) exposure to investigate the differences in the landscape of somatic mutations between Xpa knockout and wild-type mice. Although the tumors that developed in mice harbored UV signature mutations in a similar set of cancer-related genes, the pattern of transcriptional strand asymmetry was largely different; UV signature mutations in Xpa knockout and wild-type mice preferentially occurred in transcribed and non-transcribed strands, respectively, reflecting a deficiency in transcription-coupled nucleotide excision repair in Xpa knockout mice. Serial time point analyses of WES for a tumor induced by only a single UVB exposure showed pathogenic mutations in Kras, Fat1, and Kmt2c, which may be driver genes for the initiation and promotion of SCC in Xpa knockout mice. Furthermore, the inhibitory effects on tumor production in Xpa knockout mice by the anti-inflammatory CXCL1 monoclonal antibody affected the pattern of somatic mutations, wherein the transcriptional strand asymmetry was attenuated and the activated signal transduction was shifted from the RAS/RAF/MAPK to the PIK3CA pathway.