Comparison of four next generation sequencing platforms for fusion detection: Oncomine by ThermoFisher, AmpliSeq by illumina, FusionPlex by ArcherDX, and QIAseq by QIAGEN


      • Four fusion-detection NGS tests compared.
      • Fusion partners and breakpoints known vs. unknown impacts detectability.
      • OCAv3 and FusionPlex selected for further clinical validation.
      • Check percent fusion read over total read count for reportability of low-level calls.


      As fusion detection NGS techniques are adopted by clinical labs, assay performance comparison is urgently needed. We compared four fusion-detection assay platforms on a pilot cohort of 24 prostate cancer samples: (1) Oncomine Comprehensive panel v3; (2) AmpliSeq comprehensive panel v3; (3) The solid tumor panel of FusionPlex; and (4) The human oncology panel of QIAseq. The assays were compared for the detection of different types of fusion based on whether the partner gene or the breakpoints are known. All assays detected fusion with known gene partners and known breakpoint, represented by TMPRSS2-ERG. A fusion with known partners but unknown breakpoint, TMPRSS2-ETV4, was reported by OCAv3 and FusionPlex, but not by AICv3 because the specific breakpoint was not in the manifest, nor by QIAseq since the panel did not target the exact exons involved. For fusion with unknown partners, FusionPlex identified the largest number of ETV1 fusions because it had the highest exon coverage for ETV1. Among these, SNRPN-ETV1 and MALAT1-ETV1, were novel findings. To determine reportability of low-level calls of highly prevalent fusions, such as TMPRSS2-ERG, we propose the use of percent fusion reads over total number of reads per sample instead of the fusion read count.


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