Tumor diversity and evolution revealed through RADseq

Elizabeth B. Perry, Alvin Makohon-Moore, Caihong Zheng, Charles K. Kaufman, Jun Cai, Christine A. Iacobuzio-Donahue, Richard M. White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Summary: Cancer is an evolutionary disease, and there is increasing interest in applying tools from evolutionary biology to understand cancer progression. Restriction-site associated DNA sequencing (RADseq) was developed for the field of evolutionary genetics to study adaptation and identify evolutionary relationships among populations. Here we apply RADseq to study tumor evolution, which allows for unbiased sampling of any desired frequency of the genome, overcoming the selection bias and cost limitations inherent to exome or whole-genome sequencing. We apply RADseq to both human pancreatic cancer and zebrafish melanoma samples. Using either a low-frequency (SbfI, 0.4% of the genome) or high-frequency (NsiI, 6-9% of the genome) cutter, we successfully identify single nucleotide substitutions and copy number alterations in tumors, which can be augmented by performing RADseq on sublineages within the tumor. We are able to infer phylogenetic relationships between primary tumors and metastases. These same methods can be used to identify somatic mosaicism in seemingly normal, non-cancerous tissues. Evolutionary studies of cancer that focus on rates of tumor evolution and evolutionary relationships among tumor lineages will benefit from the flexibility and efficiency of restriction-site associated DNA sequencing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41792-41805
Number of pages14
Issue number26
StatePublished - 2017


  • Cancer
  • Next-generation sequencing
  • RADseq
  • Restriction-site associated DNA sequencing
  • Tumor evolution


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