Elevated RNA Editing Activity Is a Major Contributor to Transcriptomic Diversity in Tumors

Nurit Paz-Yaacov, Lily Bazak, Ilana Buchumenski, Hagit T. Porath, Miri Danan-Gotthold, Binyamin A. Knisbacher, Eli Eisenberg, Erez Y. Levanon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

237 Scopus citations


Genomic mutations in key genes are known to drive tumorigenesis and have been the focus of much attention in recent years. However, genetic content also may change farther downstream. RNA editing alters the mRNA sequence from its genomic blueprint in a dynamic and flexible way. A few isolated cases of editing alterations in cancer have been reported previously. Here, we provide a transcriptome-wide characterization of RNA editing across hundreds of cancer samples from multiple cancer tissues, and we show that A-to-I editing and the enzymes mediating this modification are significantly altered, usually elevated, in most cancer types. Increased editing activity is found to be associated with patient survival. As is the case with somatic mutations in DNA, most of these newly introduced RNA mutations are likely passengers, but a few may serve as drivers that may be novel candidates for therapeutic and diagnostic purposes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-276
Number of pages10
JournalCell Reports
Issue number2
StatePublished - 13 Oct 2015

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© 2015 The Authors.


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