Exposure to ionizing radiation during childhood markedly increases the risk of developing papillary thyroid cancer. We examined tissues from 26 Ukrainian patients with thyroid cancer who were younger than 10 years of age and living in contaminated areas during the time of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor accident. We identified nonoverlapping somatic driver mutations in all 26 cases through candidate gene assays and next-generation RNA sequencing. We found that 22 tumors harbored fusion oncogenes that arose primarily through intrachromosomal rearrangements. Altogether, 23 of the oncogenic drivers identified in this cohort aberrantly activate MAPK signaling, including the 2 somatic rearrangements resulting in fusion of transcription factor ETS variant 6 (
Julio C. Ricarte-Filho, Sheng Li, Maria E.R. Garcia-Rendueles, Cristina Montero-Conde, Francesca Voza, Jeffrey A. Knauf, Adriana Heguy, Agnes Viale, Tetyana Bogdanova, Geraldine A. Thomas, Christopher E. Mason, James A. Fagin
Screen for genetic alterations in radiation-exposed pediatric thyroid cancer.