CANCERSIGN: a user-friendly and robust tool for identification and classification of mutational signatures and patterns in cancer genomes
Analysis of cancer mutational signatures have been instrumental in identification of responsible endogenous and exogenous molecular processes in cancer. The quantitative approach used to deconvolute mutational signatures is becoming an integral part of cancer research. Therefore, development of a stand-alone tool with a user-friendly interface for analysis of cancer mutational signatures is necessary. In this manuscript we introduce CANCERSIGN, which enables users to identify 3-mer and 5-mer mutational signatures within whole genome, whole exome or pooled samples. Additionally, this tool enables users to perform clustering on tumor samples based on the proportion of mutational signatures in each sample. Using CANCERSIGN, we analysed all the whole genome somatic mutation datasets profiled by the International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC) and identified a number of novel signatures. By examining signatures found in exonic and non-exonic regions of the genome using WGS and comparing this to signatures found in WES data we observe that WGS can identify additional non-exonic signatures that are enriched in the non-coding regions of the genome while the deeper sequencing of WES may help identify weak signatures that are otherwise missed in shallower WGS data.