Next-generation sequencing reveals alternative L-DOPA decarboxylase (DDC) splice variants bearing novel exons, in human hepatocellular and lung cancer cells

Lung Cancer

Gene. 2020 Oct 23:145262. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2020.145262. Online ahead of print.


The human L-DOPA decarboxylase (DDC) is an enzyme that displays a pivotal role in metabolic processes. It is implicated in various human disorders, including hepatocellular and lung cancer. Several splice variants of DDC have previously been described, most of which encode for protein isoforms of this enzyme. In the present study, we used next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology along with nested touchdown PCR and Sanger sequencing to identify new splice variants bearing novel exons of the

DDC gene, in hepatocellular and lung cancer cell lines. Using an in-house-developed algorithm, we discovered seven novel DDC exons. Next, we determined the structure of ten novel DDC transcripts, three of which contain an open reading frame (ORF) and probably encode for three previously unknown protein isoforms of this enzyme. Future studies should focus on the elucidation of their role in cellular physiology and cancer pathobiology.