Common structural and epigenetic changes in the genome of castration-resistant prostate cancer

Terence W. Friedlander, Ritu Roy, Scott A. Tomlins, Vy T. Ngo, Yasuko Kobayashi, Aruna Azameera, Mark A. Rubin, Kenneth J. Pienta, Arul Chinnaiyan, Michael M. Ittmann, Charles J. Ryan, Pamela L. Paris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations


Progression of primary prostate cancer to castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is associated with numerous genetic and epigenetic alterations that are thought to promote survival at metastatic sites. In this study, we investigated gene copy number and CpG methylation status in CRPC to gain insight into specific pathophysiologic pathways that are active in this advanced form of prostate cancer. Our analysis defined and validated 495 genes exhibiting significant differences in CRPC in gene copy number, including gains in androgen receptor (AR) and losses of PTEN and retinoblastoma 1 (RB1). Significant copy number differences existed between tumors with or without AR gene amplification, including a common loss of AR repressors in AR-unamplified tumors. Simultaneous gene methylation and allelic deletion occurred frequently in RB1 and HSD17B2, the latter of which is involved in testosterone metabolism. Lastly, genomic DNA from most CRPC was hypermethylated compared with benign prostate tissue. Our findings establish a comprehensive methylation signature that couples epigenomic and structural analyses, thereby offering insights into the genomic alterations in CRPC that are associated with a circumvention of hormonal therapy. Genes identified in this integrated genomic study point to new drug targets in CRPC, an incurable disease state which remains the chief therapeutic challenge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)616-625
Number of pages10
JournalCancer Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012
Externally publishedYes


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