Idiopathic hypereosinophilia is clonal disorder? Clonality identified by targeted sequencing

Jee Soo Lee, Heewon Seo, Kyongok Im, Si Nae Park, Sung Min Kim, Eun Kyoung Lee, Jung Ah Kim, Joon Hee Lee, Sunghoon Kwon, Miyoung Kim, Insong Koh, Seungwoo Hwang, Heung-Woo Park, Hye Ryun Kang, Kyong Soo Park, Ju Han Kim, Dongsoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


Idiopathic hypereosinophilia (IHE)/idiopathic hypereosinophilic syndrome (IHES) has been defined by a persistent elevation of the blood eosinophil count exceeding 1.5×103/μL, without evidence of reactive or clonal causes. While T-cell clonality assessment has been recommended for unexplained hypereosinophilia, this approach is not often applied to routine practice in the clinic. We hypothesized that the clonality would exist in a subset of IHE/IHES patients. We aimed to investigate the candidate mutations and T-cell clonality in IHE/IHES and to explore the role of mutations in eosinophil proliferation. We performed targeted capture sequencing for 88 genes using next-generation sequencing, T-cell receptor (TCR) gene rearrangement assays, and pathway network analysis in relation to eosinophil proliferation. By targeted sequencing, 140 variants in 59 genes were identified. Sixteen out of 30 patients (53.3%) harbored at least one candidate mutation. The most frequently affected genes were NOTCH1 (26.7%), SCRIB and STAG2 (16.7%), and SH2B3 (13.3%). Network analysis revealed that our 21 candidate genes (BIRC3, BRD4, CSF3R, DNMT3A, EGR2, EZH2, FAT4, FLT3, GATA2, IKZF, JAK2, MAPK1, MPL, NF1, NOTCH1, PTEN, RB1, RUNX1, TET2, TP53 and WT1) are functionally linked to the eosinophilopoietic pathway. Among the 21 candidate genes, five genes (MAPK1, RUNX1, GATA2, NOTCH1 and TP53) with the highest number of linkages were considered major genes. A TCR assay revealed that four patients (13.3%) had a clonal TCR rearrangement. NOTCH1 was the most frequently mutated gene and was shown to be a common node for eosinophilopoiesis in our network analysis, while the possibility of hidden T cell malignancy was indwelling in the presence of NOTCH1 mutation, though not revealed by aberrant T cell study. Collectively, these results provide new evidence that mutations affecting eosinophilopoiesis underlie a subset of IHE/IHES, and the candidate genes are inferred to act their potential roles in the eosinophilopoietic pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0185602
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2017

Cite this

Lee, J. S., Seo, H., Im, K., Park, S. N., Kim, S. M., Lee, E. K., Kim, J. A., Lee, J. H., Kwon, S., Kim, M., Koh, I., Hwang, S., Park, H-W., Kang, H. R., Park, K. S., Kim, J. H., & Lee, D. (2017). Idiopathic hypereosinophilia is clonal disorder? Clonality identified by targeted sequencing. PLoS ONE, 12(10), [e0185602].