Retinoblastoma (RB) is a childhood intraocular cancer initiated by biallelic inactivation of the RB tumor suppressor gene (RB1−/−). RB can be hereditary (germline RB1 pathogenic allele is present) or non‐hereditary. Somatic copy number alterations (SCNAs) contribute to subsequent tumorigenesis. Previous studies of only enucleated RB eyes have reported associations between heritability status and the prevalence of SCNAs. Herein, we use an aqueous humor (AH) liquid biopsy to investigate RB genomic profiles in the context of germline RB1 status, age, and International Intraocular Retinoblastoma Classification (IIRC) clinical grouping for both enucleated and salvaged eyes. Between 2014 and 2019, AH was sampled from a total of 54 eyes of 50 patients. Germline RB1 status was determined from clinical blood testing, and cell‐free DNA from AH was analyzed for SCNAs. Of the 50 patients, 23 (46.0%; 27 eyes) had hereditary RB, and 27 (54.0%, 27 eyes) had non‐hereditary RB. Median age at diagnosis was comparable between hereditary (13 ± 10 months) and non‐hereditary (13 ± 8 months) eyes (P = 0.818). There was no significant difference in the prevalence or number of SCNAs based on (1) hereditary status (P > 0.56) or (2) IIRC grouping (P > 0.47). There was, however, a significant correlation between patient age at diagnosis, and (1) number of total SCNAs (r = 0.672, P < 0.00001) and (2) number of highly‐recurrent RB SCNAs (r = 0.616, P < 0.00001). This evidence does not support the theory that specific molecular or genomic subtypes exist between hereditary and non‐hereditary RB; rather, the prevalence of genomic alterations in RB eyes is strongly related to patient age at diagnosis.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
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