Author(s): Venables JP, Tazi J, Juge F
Abstract: Intense efforts are currently being directed toward profiling gene expression in the hope of developing better cancer markers and identifying potential drug targets. Here, we present a sensitive new approach for the identification of cancer signatures based on direct high-throughput reverse transcription-PCR validation of alternative splicing events. This layered and integrated system for splicing annotation (LISA) fills a gap between high-throughput microarray studies and high-sensitivity individual gene investigations, and was created to monitor the splicing of 600 cancer-associated genes in 25 normal and 21 serous ovarian cancer tissues. Out of >4,700 alternative splicing events screened, the LISA identified 48 events that were significantly associated with serous ovarian tumor tissues. In a further screen directed at 39 ovarian tissues containing cancer pathologies of various origins, our ovarian cancer splicing signature successfully distinguished all normal tissues from cancer. High-volume identification of cancer-associated splice forms by the LISA paves the way for the use of alternative splicing profiling to diagnose subtypes of cancer.