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Gene fusion is one of the hallmarks of cancer. Recent advances in RNA-seq of cancer transcriptomes have facilitated the discovery of fusion transcripts. In this study, we report identification of a surprisingly large number of fusion transcripts, including six KANSARL (KANSL1-ARL17A) transcripts that resulted from the fusion between the KANSL1 and ARL17A genes using a RNA splicingcode model. Five of these six KANSARL fusion transcripts are novel. By systematic analysis of RNA-seq data of glioblastoma, prostate cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, and lymphoma from different regions of the World, we have found that KANSARL fusion transcripts were rarely detected in the tumors of individuals from Asia or Africa. In contrast, they exist in 30 - 52% of the tumors from North Americans cancer patients. Analysis of CEPH/Utah Pedigree 1463 has revealed that KANSARL is a familially-inherited fusion gene. Further analysis of RNA-seq datasets of the 1000 Genome Project has indicated that KANSARL fusion gene is specific to 28.9% of the population of European ancestry origin. In summary, we demonstrated that KANSARL is the first cancer predisposition fusion gene associated with genetic backgrounds of European ancestry origin.

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© Zhou et al.This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 3.0 (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.