(1/4420) Expression of Bcl-2 protein is decreased in colorectal adenocarcinomas with microsatellite instability.

Bcl-2 is known to inhibit apoptosis and is thought to play a role in colorectal tumour development. Studies of the promoter region of bcl-2 have indicated the presence of a p53 responsive element which downregulates bcl-2 expression. Since p53 is commonly mutated in colorectal cancers, but rarely in those tumours showing microsatellite instability (MSI), the aim of this study was to examine the relationship of bcl-2 protein expression to MSI, as well as to other clinicopathological and molecular variables, in colorectal adenocarcinomas. Expression of bcl-2 was analysed by immunohistochemistry in 71 colorectal cancers which had been previously assigned to three classes depending upon their levels of MSI. MSI-high tumours demonstrated instability in three or more of six microsatellite markers tested, MSI-low tumours in one or two of six, and MSI-null in none of six. Bcl-2 expression in tumours was quantified independently by two pathologists and assigned to one of five categories, with respect to the number of cells which showed positive staining: 0, up to 5%; 1, 6-25%; 2, 26-50%; 3, 51-75%; and 4, > or =76%. Bcl-2 negative tumours were defined as those with a score of 0. Bcl-2 protein expression was tested for association with clinicopathological stage, differentiation level, tumour site, age, sex, survival, evidence of p53 inactivation and MSI level. A significant association was found between bcl-2 expression and patient survival (P = 0.012, Gehan Wilcoxon test). Further, a significant reciprocal relationship was found between bcl-2 expression and the presence of MSI (P = 0.012, Wilcoxon rank sum test). We conclude that bcl-2 expressing colorectal cancers are more likely to be MSI-null, and to be associated with improved patient survival.  (+info)

(2/4420) Comparative molecular genetic profiles of anaplastic astrocytomas/glioblastomas multiforme and their subsequent recurrences.

Malignant glial tumors (anaplastic astrocytomas and glioblastomas multiforme) arise mostly either from the progression of low grade precursor lesions or rapidly in a de novo fashion and contain distinct genetic alterations. There is, however, a third subset of malignant gliomas in which genetic lesions remain to be identified. Following surgical resection, all gliomas appear to have an inherent tendency to recur. Comparative molecular analysis of ten primary malignant gliomas (three anaplastic astrocytomas and seven glioblastomas multiforme) with their recurrences identified two distinct subgroups of recurrent tumors. In one group, primary tumors harbored genetic aberrations frequently associated with linear progression or de novo formation pathways of glial tumorigenesis and maintained their genetic profiles upon recurrence. In the other subset with no detectable known genetic mutations at first presentation, the recurrent tumors sustained specific abnormalities associated with pathways of linear progression or de novo formation. These included loss of genes on chromosomes 17 and 10, mutations in the p53 gene, homozygous deletion of the DMBTA1 and p16 and/ or p15 genes and amplification and/or overexpression of CDK4 and alpha form of the PDGF receptor. Recurrent tumors from both groups also displayed an abnormal expression profile of the metalloproteinase, gel A, and its inhibitor, TIMP-2, consistent with their highly invasive behavior. Delineation of the molecular differences between malignant glioblastomas and their subsequent recurrences may have important implications for the development of rational clinical approaches for this neoplasm that remains refractory to existing therapeutic modalities.  (+info)

(3/4420) Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor in human oral squamous cell carcinoma: its association with tumour progression and p53 gene status.

AIMS: To correlate vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression in oral squamous cell carcinoma with the clinicopathological characteristics and prognosis; and to assess whether p53 gene status is associated with VEGF expression in human cancers. METHODS: Tumour specimens from 45 patients with oral squamous cell carcinomas were examined. Expression of VEGF was determined using an immunohistochemical method, and a tumour was considered positive when more than 5% of the neoplastic cells showed VEGF immunoreactivity. The p53 gene status was screened using a polymerase chain reaction--single strand conformation polymorphism analysis. RESULTS: VEGF positive staining was detected in 19 (42.2%) of the 45 cases. VEGF immunoreactivity did not correlate with the histological degree of tumour differentiation, clinical stages, or lymph node metastasis. The patients with VEGF positive tumours had a significantly worse prognosis than those with VEGF negative tumours. The five year overall survival rate of the VEGF negative patients was 76.5%, as compared with 48.8% for the VEGF positive patients. No significant association between VEGF expression and the p53 gene status of the tumours was found. CONCLUSIONS: VEGF is a good prognostic indicator of the survival of patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma. The p53 gene status does not seem to be associated with VEGF expression in these cancers.  (+info)

(4/4420) Transcriptional regulation and induction of apoptosis: implications for the use of monomeric p53 variants in gene therapy.

The p53 tumour suppressor protein is a transcriptional activator, which can induce cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. p53 Gene mutations occur in more than 50% of all human tumours. Reintroduction of wild-type p53 but also of oligomerisation-independent p53 variants into tumour cells by gene transfer methods has been considered. We have investigated the biological properties of two carboxy-terminal deletion mutants of p53, p53 delta 300 (comprising amino acids 1-300) and p53 delta 326 (amino acids 1-326), to evaluate their potential deployment in gene therapy. Transactivation was measured in transiently transfected HeLa and SKBR3 cells. Both monomeric variants showed reduced activities compared with wild-type p53. Individual promoters were differently affected. In contrast to wild-type p53, monomeric variants were not able to induce apoptosis. We also provided wild-type p53 and p53 delta 326 with tetracycline-regulated promoters and stably introduced these constructs into Saos2 and SKBR3 cells. Upon induction, wild-type p53 expressing cells, but not p53 delta 326 expressing cells underwent apoptosis. Consistently, only wild-type p53 expressing cells accumulated p21/waf1/cip1 mRNA and protein and showed increased bax, Gadd45 and mdm2 mRNA. Neither wild-type p53 nor p53 delta 326 repressed the transcription of the IGF-1R gene in these cell lines. We conclude that the transactivation potential of monomeric, carboxy-terminally truncated p53 is not sufficient to cause induction of the endogenous target genes which trigger apoptosis.  (+info)

(5/4420) Multiple target sites of allelic imbalance on chromosome 17 in Barrett's oesophageal cancer.

Twelve Barrett's adenocarcinomas have been analysed for the occurrence of allelic imbalance (LOH) on chromosome 17 using 41 microsatellite markers. This study provides evidence for 13 minimal regions of LOH, six on 17p and seven on 17q. Four of these centre in the vicinity of the known tumour suppressor genes (TSGs) TP53 (17p13.1), NFI (17q11.2), BRCA1 (17q21.1), and a putative TSG (17p13.3). The tumours all displayed relatively small regions of LOH (1-10 cM), and in several tumours extensive regions of LOH were detected. One tumour displayed only two very small regions of LOH; 17p11.2 and 17p13.1. The frequency of allelic imbalance has been calculated based on the LOH encompassing only one minimal region, and based on all the LOH observations. By both evaluations the highest LOH frequencies were found for regions II (p53), III (17p13.1 centromeric to p53), IV (17p12), V (17p11.2) and VII (NF1, 17q11.2). Our data supports the existence of multiple TSGs on chromosome 17 and challenges the view that p53 is the sole target of LOH on 17p in Barrett's adenocarcinoma.  (+info)

(6/4420) Correlation between the status of the p53 gene and survival in patients with stage I non-small cell lung carcinoma.

The association of p53 abnormalities with the prognosis of patients with non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) has been extensively investigated to date, however, this association is still controversial. Therefore, we investigated the prognostic significance of p53 mutations through exons 2 to 11 and p53 protein expression in 103 cases of stage I NSCLC. p53 mutations were detected in 49 of 103 (48%) tumors. Two separate mutations were detected in four tumors giving a total of 53 unique mutations in 49 tumors. Ten (19%) of mutations occurred outside exons 5-8. Positive immunohistochemical staining of p53 protein was detected in 41 of 103 (40%) tumors. The concordance rate between mutations and protein overexpression was only 69%. p53 mutations, but not expression, were significantly associated with a shortened survival of patients (P<0.001). Furthermore, we investigated the correlation between the types of p53 mutations and prognosis. p53 missense mutations rather than null mutations were associated with poor prognosis (P < 0.001 in missense mutations and P=0.243 in null mutations). These results indicated that p53 mutations, in particular missense mutations, rather than p53 expression could be a useful molecular marker for the prognosis of patients with surgically resected stage I NSCLC.  (+info)

(7/4420) Estrogen-dependent and independent activation of the P1 promoter of the p53 gene in transiently transfected breast cancer cells.

Loss of p53 function by mutational inactivation is the most common marker of the cancerous phenotype. Previous studies from our laboratory have demonstrated 17 beta estradiol (E2) induction of p53 protein expression in breast cancer cells. Although direct effects of E2 on the expression of p53 gene are not known, the steroid is a potent regulator of c-Myc transcription. In the present studies, we have examined the ability of E2 and antiestrogens to regulate the P1 promoter of the p53 gene which contains a c-Myc responsive element. Estrogen receptor (ER)-positive T47D and MCF-7 cells were transiently transfected with the P1CAT reporter plasmid and levels of CAT activity in response to serum, E2 and antiestrogens were monitored. Factors in serum were noted to be the dominant inducers of chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) expression in MCF-7 cells. The levels of CAT were drastically reduced when cells were maintained in serum free medium (SFM). However, a subtle ER-mediated induction of CAT expression was detectable when MCF-7 cells, cultured in SFM, were treated with E2. In serum-stimulated T47D cells, the CAT expression was minimal. The full ER antagonist, ICI 182 780 (ICI) had no effect. Treatment with E2 or 4-hydroxy tamoxifen (OHT) resulted in P1CAT induction; OHT was more effective than E2. Consistent with c-Myc regulation of the P1 promoter, E2 stimulated endogenous c-Myc in both cell lines. Two forms of c-Myc were expressed independent of E2 stimuli. The expression of a third more rapidly migrating form was E2-dependent and ER-mediated since it was blocked by the full ER antagonist, ICI, but not by the ER agonist/antagonist OHT. These data demonstrate both ER-mediated and ER-independent regulation of c-Myc and the P1 promoter of the p53 gene, and show differential effects of the two classes of antiestrogens in their ability to induce the P1 promoter of the p53 gene in breast cancer cells.  (+info)

(8/4420) Adenovirus mediated p53 tumour suppressor gene therapy for human gastric cancer cells in vitro and in vivo.

BACKGROUND/AIMS: Gastric cancer is one of the most prevalent forms of cancer in East Asia. Point mutation of the p53 gene has been reported in more than 60% of cases of gastric cancer and can lead to genetic instability and uncontrolled cell proliferation. The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate the potential of p53 gene therapy for gastric cancer. METHODS: The responses of human gastric cancer cell lines, MKN1, MKN7, MKN28, MKN45, and TMK-1, to recombinant adenoviruses encoding wild type p53 (AdCAp53) were analysed in vitro. The efficacy of the AdCAp53 treatment for MKN1 and MKN45 subcutaneous tumours in nude mice was assessed in vivo. RESULTS: p53-specific growth inhibition was observed in vitro in two of four gastric cancer cell lines with mutated p53, but not in the wild type p53 cell line. The mechanism of the killing of gastric cancer cells by AdCAp53 was found, by flow cytometric analysis and detection of DNA fragmentation, to be apoptosis. In vivo studies showed that the growth of subcutaneous tumours of p53 mutant MKN1 cells was significantly inhibited by direct injection of AdCAp53, but no significant growth inhibition was detected in the growth of p53 wild type MKN45 tumours. CONCLUSIONS: Adenovirus mediated reintroduction of wild type p53 is a potential clinical utility in gene therapy for gastric cancers.  (+info)