Motivation

Detection of genomic alterations in circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) is currently used for active clinical monitoring of cancer progression and treatment response. While methods for analysis of small mutations are more developed, strategies for detecting structural variants (SVs) in ctDNA are limited. Additionally, reproducibly calling small-scale mutations, copy number alterations, and SVs in ctDNA is challenging due to the lack to unified tools for these different classes of variants.

Results

We developed a unified pipeline for the analysis of ctDNA [Pipeline for the Analysis of ctDNA (PACT)] that accurately detects SVs and consistently outperformed similar tools when applied to simulated, cell line, and clinical data. We provide PACT in the form of a Common Workflow Language pipeline which can be run by popular workflow management systems in high-performance computing environments.

Availability and implementation

PACT is freely available at https://github.com/ChrisMaherLab/PACT.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.