Surgery is the only curative option for stage I/II pancreatic cancer; nonetheless, most patients will experience a recurrence after surgery and die of their disease. To identify novel opportunities for management of recurrent pancreatic cancer, we performed whole-exome or targeted sequencing of 10 resected primary cancers and matched intrapancreatic recur-rences or distant metastases. We identified that recurrent disease after adjuvant or first-line platinum therapy corresponds to an increased mutational burden. Recurrent disease is enriched for genetic alterations predicted to activate MAPK/ERK and PI3K–AKT signaling and develops from a monophyl-etic or polyphyletic origin. Treatment-induced genetic bottlenecks lead to a modified genetic landscape and subclonal heterogeneity for driver gene alterations in part due to intermetastatic seeding. In 1 patient what was believed to be recurrent disease was an independent (second) primary tumor. These findings suggest routine post-treatment sampling may have value in the management of recurrent pancreatic cancer. SIGnIFICAnCE: The biological features or clinical vulnerabilities of recurrent pancreatic cancer after pancreaticoduodenectomy are unknown. Using whole-exome sequencing we find that recurrent disease has a distinct genomic landscape, intermetastatic genetic heterogeneity, diverse clonal origins, and higher mutational burden than found for treatment-naïve disease. See related commentary by Bednar and Pasca di Magliano, p. 762.
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