All Publications


  • Spatial proteomic characterization of HER2-positive breast tumors through neoadjuvant therapy predicts response NATURE CANCER McNamara, K. L., Caswell-Jin, J. L., Joshi, R., Ma, Z., Kotler, E., Bean, G. R., Kriner, M., Zhou, Z., Hoang, M., Beechem, J., Zoeller, J., Press, M. F., Slamon, D. J., Hurvitz, S. A., Curtis, C. 2021; 2 (4): 400-+
  • Characterizing the tumor and immune microenvironment through treatment to predict response to neoadjuvant HER2-targeted therapy using the Digital Spatial Profiler McNamara, K., Caswell-Jin, J. L., Ma, Z., Zoeller, J. J., Kriner, M., Zhou, Z., Reeves, J., Hoang, M., Beechem, J., Slamon, D. J., Press, M. F., Brugge, J., Hurvitz, S. A., Curtis, C. AMER ASSOC CANCER RESEARCH. 2020
  • Tumor expression and microenvironment in HER2-positive breast cancer before and on HER2-targeted therapy: Analysis of microarray expression data from the TRIO-US B07 trial Caswell-Jin, J. L., McNamara, K. L., Dering, J., Chen, H., Dichmann, R., Perez, A., Patel, R., Kotler, E., Zoeller, J. J., Brugge, J. S., Press, M. F., Slamon, D. J., Curtis, C., Hurvitz, S. A. AMER ASSOC CANCER RESEARCH. 2020
  • Pathologic and molecular responses to neoadjuvant trastuzumab and/or lapatinib from a phase II randomized trial in HER2-positive breast cancer (TRIO-US B07). Nature communications Hurvitz, S. A., Caswell-Jin, J. L., McNamara, K. L., Zoeller, J. J., Bean, G. R., Dichmann, R., Perez, A., Patel, R., Zehngebot, L., Allen, H., Bosserman, L., DiCarlo, B., Kennedy, A., Giuliano, A., Calfa, C., Molthrop, D., Mani, A., Chen, H., Dering, J., Adams, B., Kotler, E., Press, M. F., Brugge, J. S., Curtis, C., Slamon, D. J. 2020; 11 (1): 5824

    Abstract

    In this multicenter, open-label, randomized phase II investigator-sponsored neoadjuvant trial with funding provided by Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline (TRIO-US B07, Clinical Trials NCT00769470), participants with early-stage HER2-positive breast cancer (N=128) were recruited from 13 United States oncology centers throughout the Translational Research in Oncology network. Participants were randomized to receive trastuzumab (T; N=34), lapatinib (L; N=36), or both (TL; N=58) as HER2-targeted therapy, with each participant given one cycle of this designated anti-HER2 therapy alone followed by six cycles of standard combination chemotherapy with the same anti-HER2 therapy. The primary objective was to estimate the rate of pathologic complete response (pCR) at the time of surgery in each of the three arms. In the intent-to-treat population, we observed similar pCR rates between T (47%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 30-65%) and TL (52%, 95% CI 38-65%), and a lower pCR rate with L (25%, 95% CI 13-43%). In the T arm, 100% of participants completed all protocol-specified treatment prior to surgery, as compared to 69% in the L arm and 74% in the TL arm. Tumor or tumor bed tissue was collected whenever possible pre-treatment (N=110), after one cycle of HER2-targeted therapy alone (N=89), and at time of surgery (N=59). Higher-level amplification of HER2 and hormone receptor (HR)-negative status were associated with a higher pCR rate. Large shifts in the tumor, immune, and stromal gene expression occurred after one cycle of HER2-targeted therapy. In contrast to pCR rates, the L-containing arms exhibited greater proliferation reduction than T at this timepoint. Immune expression signatures increased in all arms after one cycle of HER2-targeted therapy, decreasing again by the time of surgery. Our results inform approaches to early assessment of sensitivity to anti-HER2 therapy and shed light on the role of the immune microenvironment in response to HER2-targeted agents.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41467-020-19494-2

    View details for PubMedID 33203854

  • Novel insights into breast cancer copy number genetic heterogeneity revealed by single-cell genome sequencing. eLife Baslan, T. n., Kendall, J. n., Volyanskyy, K. n., McNamara, K. n., Cox, H. n., D'Italia, S. n., Ambrosio, F. n., Riggs, M. n., Rodgers, L. n., Leotta, A. n., Song, J. n., Mao, Y. n., Wu, J. n., Shah, R. n., Gularte-Mérida, R. n., Chadalavada, K. n., Nanjangud, G. n., Varadan, V. n., Gordon, A. n., Curtis, C. n., Krasnitz, A. n., Dimitrova, N. n., Harris, L. n., Wigler, M. n., Hicks, J. n. 2020; 9

    Abstract

    Copy number alterations (CNAs) play an important role in molding the genomes of breast cancers and have been shown to be clinically useful for prognostic and therapeutic purposes. However, our knowledge of intra-tumoral genetic heterogeneity of this important class of somatic alterations is limited. Here, using single-cell sequencing, we comprehensively map out the facets of copy number alteration heterogeneity in a cohort of breast cancer tumors. Ou/var/www/html/elife/12-05-2020/backup/r analyses reveal: genetic heterogeneity of non-tumor cells (i.e. stroma) within the tumor mass; the extent to which copy number heterogeneity impacts breast cancer genomes and the importance of both the genomic location and dosage of sub-clonal events; the pervasive nature of genetic heterogeneity of chromosomal amplifications; and the association of copy number heterogeneity with clinical and biological parameters such as polyploidy and estrogen receptor negative status. Our data highlight the power of single-cell genomics in dissecting, in its many forms, intra-tumoral genetic heterogeneity of CNAs, the magnitude with which CNA heterogeneity affects the genomes of breast cancers, and the potential importance of CNA heterogeneity in phenomena such as therapeutic resistance and disease relapse.

    View details for DOI 10.7554/eLife.51480

    View details for PubMedID 32401198

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC7220379

  • Clonal replacement and heterogeneity in breast tumors treated with neoadjuvant HER2-targeted therapy NATURE COMMUNICATIONS Caswell-Jin, J. L., McNamara, K., Reiter, J. G., Sun, R., Hu, Z., Ma, Z., Ding, J., Suarez, C. J., Tilk, S., Raghavendra, A., Forte, V., Chin, S., Bardwell, H., Provenzano, E., Caldas, C., Lang, J., West, R., Tripathy, D., Press, M. F., Curtis, C. 2019; 10
  • Clonal replacement of tumor-specific T cells following PD-1 blockade. Nature medicine Yost, K. E., Satpathy, A. T., Wells, D. K., Qi, Y. n., Wang, C. n., Kageyama, R. n., McNamara, K. L., Granja, J. M., Sarin, K. Y., Brown, R. A., Gupta, R. K., Curtis, C. n., Bucktrout, S. L., Davis, M. M., Chang, A. L., Chang, H. Y. 2019

    Abstract

    Immunotherapies that block inhibitory checkpoint receptors on T cells have transformed the clinical care of patients with cancer1. However, whether the T cell response to checkpoint blockade relies on reinvigoration of pre-existing tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes or on recruitment of novel T cells remains unclear2-4. Here we performed paired single-cell RNA and T cell receptor sequencing on 79,046 cells from site-matched tumors from patients with basal or squamous cell carcinoma before and after anti-PD-1 therapy. Tracking T cell receptor clones and transcriptional phenotypes revealed coupling of tumor recognition, clonal expansion and T cell dysfunction marked by clonal expansion of CD8+CD39+ T cells, which co-expressed markers of chronic T cell activation and exhaustion. However, the expansion of T cell clones did not derive from pre-existing tumor-infiltrating T lymphocytes; instead, the expanded clones consisted of novel clonotypes that had not previously been observed in the same tumor. Clonal replacement of T cells was preferentially observed in exhausted CD8+ T cells and evident in patients with basal or squamous cell carcinoma. These results demonstrate that pre-existing tumor-specific T cells may have limited reinvigoration capacity, and that the T cell response to checkpoint blockade derives from a distinct repertoire of T cell clones that may have just recently entered the tumor.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41591-019-0522-3

    View details for PubMedID 31359002

  • Clonal replacement and heterogeneity in breast tumors treated with neoadjuvant HER2-targeted therapy. Nature communications Caswell-Jin, J. L., McNamara, K. n., Reiter, J. G., Sun, R. n., Hu, Z. n., Ma, Z. n., Ding, J. n., Suarez, C. J., Tilk, S. n., Raghavendra, A. n., Forte, V. n., Chin, S. F., Bardwell, H. n., Provenzano, E. n., Caldas, C. n., Lang, J. n., West, R. n., Tripathy, D. n., Press, M. F., Curtis, C. n. 2019; 10 (1): 657

    Abstract

    Genomic changes observed across treatment may result from either clonal evolution or geographically disparate sampling of heterogeneous tumors. Here we use computational modeling based on analysis of fifteen primary breast tumors and find that apparent clonal change between two tumor samples can frequently be explained by pre-treatment heterogeneity, such that at least two regions are necessary to detect treatment-induced clonal shifts. To assess for clonal replacement, we devise a summary statistic based on whole-exome sequencing of a pre-treatment biopsy and multi-region sampling of the post-treatment surgical specimen and apply this measure to five breast tumors treated with neoadjuvant HER2-targeted therapy. Two tumors underwent clonal replacement with treatment, and mathematical modeling indicates these two tumors had resistant subclones prior to treatment and rates of resistance-related genomic changes that were substantially larger than previous estimates. Our results provide a needed framework to incorporate primary tumor heterogeneity in investigating the evolution of resistance.

    View details for PubMedID 30737380

  • Publisher Correction: Clonal replacement and heterogeneity in breast tumors treated with neoadjuvant HER2-targeted therapy. Nature communications Caswell-Jin, J. L., McNamara, K. n., Reiter, J. G., Sun, R. n., Hu, Z. n., Ma, Z. n., Ding, J. n., Suarez, C. J., Tilk, S. n., Raghavendra, A. n., Forte, V. n., Chin, S. F., Bardwell, H. n., Provenzano, E. n., Caldas, C. n., Lang, J. n., West, R. n., Tripathy, D. n., Press, M. F., Curtis, C. n. 2019; 10 (1): 2433

    Abstract

    The original version of this Article omitted from the Author Contributions statement that 'R.S. and J.G.R contributed equally to this work.' This has been corrected in both the PDF and HTML versions of the Article.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41467-019-10456-x

    View details for PubMedID 31147552

  • Harnessing Tumor Evolution to Circumvent Resistance. Trends in genetics : TIG Pogrebniak, K. L., Curtis, C. 2018

    Abstract

    High-throughput sequencing can be used to measure changes in tumor composition across space and time. Specifically, comparisons of pre- and post-treatment samples can reveal the underlying clonal dynamics and resistance mechanisms. Here, we discuss evidence for distinct modes of tumor evolution and their implications for therapeutic strategies. In addition, we consider the utility of spatial tissue sampling schemes, single-cell analysis, and circulating tumor DNA to track tumor evolution and the emergence of resistance, as well as approaches that seek to forestall resistance by targeting tumor evolution. Ultimately, characterization of the (epi)genomic, transcriptomic, and phenotypic changes that occur during tumor progression coupled with computational and mathematical modeling of tumor evolutionary dynamics may inform personalized treatment strategies.

    View details for PubMedID 29903534