Identifying EGFR-Expressed Cells and Detecting EGFR Multi-Mutations at Single-Cell Level by Microfluidic Chip.
Nanomicro Lett. 2018;10(1):16
Authors: Li R, Zhou M, Li J, Wang Z, Zhang W, Yue C, Ma Y, Peng H, Wei Z, Hu Z
EGFR mutations companion diagnostics have been proved to be crucial for the efficacy of tyrosine kinase inhibitor targeted cancer therapies. To uncover multiple mutations occurred in minority of EGFR-mutated cells, which may be covered by the noises from majority of un-mutated cells, is currently becoming an urgent clinical requirement. Here we present the validation of a microfluidic-chip-based method for detecting EGFR multi-mutations at single-cell level. By trapping and immunofluorescently imaging single cells in specifically designed silicon microwells, the EGFR-expressed cells were easily identified. By in situ lysing single cells, the cell lysates of EGFR-expressed cells were retrieved without cross-contamination. Benefited from excluding the noise from cells without EGFR expression, the simple and cost-effective Sanger’s sequencing, but not the expensive deep sequencing of the whole cell population, was used to discover multi-mutations. We verified the new method with precisely discovering three most important EGFR drug-related mutations from a sample in which EGFR-mutated cells only account for a small percentage of whole cell population. The microfluidic chip is capable of discovering not only the existence of specific EGFR multi-mutations, but also other valuable single-cell-level information: on which specific cells the mutations occurred, or whether different mutations coexist on the same cells. This microfluidic chip constitutes a promising method to promote simple and cost-effective Sanger’s sequencing to be a routine test before performing targeted cancer therapy.
PMID: 30393665 [PubMed]