Purpose Enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2), a chromatin remodeler, is implicated in the pathogenesis of clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC).However, the effect of EZH2 on outcomes in localized ccRCC is unclear, and molecular biomarkers are not currently integrated into prognostic models or adjuvant therapy trials. Methods We performed Cox regression to evaluate the association of tumor-based EZH2 gene and protein expression with survival in three independent cohorts: a cohort from The Cancer Genome Atlas (n = 532), a cohort fromUniversity of Texas SouthwesternMedical Center (n = 122), and a cohort from Mayo Clinic (n = 1,338). Analyses were adjusted for the prognostic stage, size, grade, and necrosis (SSIGN) score as well as within low-, intermediate-, and high-risk SSIGN groups. Results Patients in The Cancer Genome Atlas cohort with EZH2-high gene expression were 1.5 times more likely to experience overall death than patients with EZH2-low expression (95% CI, 1.1 to 2.3; P = .028). Patients in the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center cohort with EZH2-high protein expression were two times more likely to experience overall death than patients with EZH2- low expression (95% CI, 1.1 to 4.4; P = .034). Similarly, patients in the Mayo Clinic cohort with EZH2- high protein expression were 1.4 times more likely to experience overall death (95% CI, 1.2 to 1.7; P < .001). Patients in the Mayo Clinic cohort with EZH2-high protein expression were nearly two times more likely to experience RCC-specific death (95% CI, 1.5 to 2.6; P < .001); EZH2 protein expression was particularly prognostic among patients with low-risk SSIGN tumors (HR, 6.1; 95% CI, 3.4 to 11.1; P < .001). Conclusion EZH2 expression accurately predicts risk of RCC death beyond existing clinicopathologic models, particularly in low- and intermediate-risk SSIGN tumors. Further studies are required to incorporate molecular biomarkers into surveillance guidelines and adjuvant clinical trials.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research