Development and validation of a whole-exome sequencing test for simultaneous detection of point mutations, indels and copy-number alterations for precision cancer care
Fanconi Anemia Complementation Group A Protein
We describe Exome Cancer Test v1.0 (EXaCT-1), the first New York State-Department of Health-approved whole-exome sequencing (WES)-based test for precision cancer care. EXaCT-1 uses HaloPlex (Agilent) target enrichment followed by next-generation sequencing (Illumina) of tumour and matched constitutional control DNA. We present a detailed clinical development and validation pipeline suitable for simultaneous detection of somatic point/indel mutations and copy-number alterations (CNAs). A computational framework for data analysis, reporting and sign-out is also presented. For the validation, we tested EXaCT-1 on 57 tumours covering five distinct clinically relevant mutations. Results demonstrated elevated and uniform coverage compatible with clinical testing as well as complete concordance in variant quality metrics between formalin-fixed paraffin embedded and fresh-frozen tumours. Extensive sensitivity studies identified limits of detection threshold for point/indel mutations and CNAs. Prospective analysis of 337 cancer cases revealed mutations in clinically relevant genes in 82% of tumours, demonstrating that EXaCT-1 is an accurate and sensitive method for identifying actionable mutations, with reasonable costs and time, greatly expanding its utility for advanced cancer care.