A virome-wide clonal integration analysis platform for discovering cancer viral etiology

Genome Research
Xun ChenDawei Li


Oncoviral infection is responsible for 12%-15% of cancer in humans. Convergent evidence from epidemiology, pathology, and oncology suggests that new viral etiologies for cancers remain to be discovered. Oncoviral profiles can be obtained from cancer genome sequencing data; however, widespread viral sequence contamination and noncausal viruses complicate the process of identifying genuine oncoviruses. Here, we propose a novel strategy to address these challenges by performing virome-wide screening of early-stage clonal viral integrations. To implement this strategy, we developed VIcaller, a novel platform for identifying viral integrations that are derived from any characterized viruses and shared by a large proportion of tumor cells using whole-genome sequencing (WGS) data. The sensitivity and precision were confirmed with simulated and benchmark cancer data sets. By applying this platform to cancer WGS data sets with proven or speculated viral etiology, we newly identified or confirmed clonal integrations of hepatitis B virus (HBV), human papillomavirus (HPV), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), and BK Virus (BKV), suggesting the involvement of these viruses in early stages of tumorigenesis in affected tumors, such as HBV in TERT and KM...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Mixed-lineage leukemia 4 protein, human
Whole Genome Sequencing
BK Virus
Malignant Neoplasm of Urinary Bladder
Neoplastic Cell Transformation
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DNA, Viral
Epstein-Barr Virus
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