AIDA

Gene Summary

Gene:AIDA; axin interactor, dorsalization associated
Aliases: C1orf80
Location:1q41
Summary:-
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:axin interactor, dorsalization-associated protein
HPRD
Source:NCBIAccessed: 17 August, 2015

Ontology:

What does this gene/protein do?
Show (7)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 17 August 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Adenocarcinoma
  • Adolescents
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Oncogene Fusion Proteins
  • Androgen Receptors
  • Cancer DNA
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Idarubicin
  • Remission Induction
  • FISH
  • Oral Cavity Cancer
  • Point Mutation
  • Chromosomal Instability
  • Microsatellite Instability
  • Retinoic Acid
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • TP53
  • Oncogene Proteins
  • Base Sequence
  • Chromosome 1
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lung Cancer
  • RTPCR
  • Survival Rate
  • fms-Like Tyrosine Kinase 3
  • Mutation
  • Cancer RNA
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Trisomy
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Staging
  • Childhood Cancer
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma
  • Leukemia, Promyelocytic, Acute
  • Japan
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
Tag cloud generated 17 August, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: AIDA (cancer-related)

Breccia M, De Propris MS, Stefanizzi C, et al.
Negative prognostic value of CD34 antigen also if expressed on a small population of acute promyelocytic leukemia cells.
Ann Hematol. 2014; 93(11):1819-23 [PubMed] Related Publications
Potential clinical significance of CD34 expression in acute promyelocitic leukemia (APL) has not been deeply investigated. We hereby analyzed the clinico-biological features and treatment outcome of APL patients in relation to CD34 expression, even when expressed in a small subpopulation: 114 APL patients homogeneously treated with the AIDA schedule were included in the study and prognostic correlation with respect to CD34 expression, both when expressed in association with CD2 and as isolated expression (cutoff ≥2 to <10 % or ≥10 %), were investigated. CD34 was associated to CD2 in 30 patients and was isolated in 19 patients. When compared to the CD34-negative population, CD34/CD2 expression identified a subgroup with characteristic features: M3 variant subtype (26 vs 7 % in the negative group, p = 0.02), bcr3 transcript subtype (73 vs 32 %, p = 0.001), high risk according to the risk of relapse (66 vs 17 %, p = 0.002), high incidence of differentiation syndrome (26 vs 12 %, p = 0.01), lower overall survival (88 vs 95 %), and a significantly higher rate of relapse (22 vs 13.8 %, p = 0.05). We then evaluated the prognostic value of isolated CD34 expression: it was detected in nine patients with a cutoff of expression ≥10 % and in 10 patients with a cutoff ≥2 but <10 %. Isolated CD34 positivity identified a subgroup with a classic morphology (79 %), bcr1 prevalence (53 %), higher rate of relapse (37 vs 13.8 % in the negative group, p = 0.002), higher incidence of differentiation syndrome (55 vs 12 %, p = 0.03), and lower overall survival (60 vs 95 %, p = 0.001). The results of our study confirm that CD34/CD2 expression characterizes a subset of APL with a high WBC count and a variant morphological subtype, associated with an unfavorable clinical course. We also show that the isolated expression of CD34, even at a low cutoff, identifies a group of classic APL with a negative prognosis. Further studies aimed at identifying other molecular signatures in CD34-positive patients are needed in order to optimize the therapeutic strategy for this subset of patients.

Tanaka S, Aida K, Nishida Y, Kobayashi T
Pathophysiological mechanisms involving aggressive islet cell destruction in fulminant type 1 diabetes.
Endocr J. 2013; 60(7):837-45 [PubMed] Related Publications
Fulminant type 1 diabetes is characterized by a rapid onset of severe hyperglycemia and ketoacidosis, with subsequent poor prognosis of diabetic complications. This review summarizes new findings related to the pathophysiology of accelerated β-cell failure in fulminant type 1 diabetes. Immunohistological examination revealed the presence of enterovirus in pancreatic islet cells and exocrine tissues and hyperexpression of pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) including melanoma differentiation-associated antigen 5 (MDA5), retinoic acid-inducible gene-I (RIG-I), Toll-like receptor (TLR)3 and TLR4, essential sensors of innate immunity, in islet cells and mononuclear cells (MNCs) infiltrating islets. Interferon (IFN)-α and IFN-β, products of PRR cascades, were expressed in both islet cells and infiltrating MNCs. Phenotypes of infiltrating cells around and/or into islets were mainly dendritic cells, macrophages and CD8+ T cells. Islet β-cells simultaneously expressed CXC chemokine ligand 10 (CXCL10), IFN-γ and interleukin-18, indicating that these chemokines/ cytotoxic cytokines mutually amplify their cytoplasmic expression in the islet cells. These positive feedback systems might enhance adaptive immunity, leading to rapid and complete loss of β-cells in fulminant type 1 diabetes. In innate and adaptive/autoimmune immune processes, the mechanisms behind bystander activation/killing might further amplify β-cell destruction. In addition to intrinsic pathway of cell apoptosis, the Fas and Fas ligand pathway are also involved as an extrinsic pathway of cell apoptosis. A high prevalence of anti-amylase autoantibodies was recognized in patients with fulminant type 1 diabetes, which suggests that Th2 T-cell reactive immunity against amylase might contribute to β-cell destruction in fulminant type 1 diabetes.

Arai T, Sakurai U, Sawabe M, et al.
Frequent microsatellite instability in papillary and solid-type, poorly differentiated adenocarcinomas of the stomach.
Gastric Cancer. 2013; 16(4):505-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Microsatellite instability (MSI) has been observed in 8-39 % of sporadic gastric cancers. However, despite numerous reports indicating a significant relationship between intestinal-type histology and MSI, detailed correlation between histological subtypes and MSI remains obscure. The purpose of the present study is to clarify the relationship between histological subtype and microsatellite status in gastric carcinomas.
METHODS: Microsatellite status was examined for 464 consecutive gastric carcinomas from 420 patients as well as histological subtypes and other clinicopathological findings.
RESULTS: MSI was observed in 82 carcinomas (17.7 %), and the greatest proportions were observed in solid-type, poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma (43.0 %) and papillary adenocarcinoma (32.5 %), both being significantly higher than those of other subtypes. The proportion increased with advancing age (0 % at 51-64 years, 8.5 % at 65-74 years, 18.4 % at 75-84 years, 35.3 % at 85-96 years). Compared with microsatellite-stable carcinomas, microsatellite-unstable carcinomas were significantly related with older age, female gender, antral location, and predominant papillary adenocarcinoma and solid-type, poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma. Poorly differentiated type carcinoma was significantly less frequent than differentiated type in microsatellite-unstable cancer at the early stage, whereas no significant difference existed at the advanced stage.
CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that there are specific histological subtypes with highly frequent MSI and that gastric carcinoma with MSI originates from differentiated-type carcinomas, indicating histological diversity during tumor growth.

Miyasaka T, Takeshima SN, Jimba M, et al.
Identification of bovine leukocyte antigen class II haplotypes associated with variations in bovine leukemia virus proviral load in Japanese Black cattle.
Tissue Antigens. 2013; 81(2):72-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
Bovine leukemia virus (BLV) is the etiological agent of enzootic bovine leukosis, which is the most common neoplastic disease of cattle. Bovine leukocyte antigen (BoLA) is strongly involved in the subclinical progression of BLV infections. Recent studies show that the BoLA-DRB3 gene might play a direct role in controlling the number of BLV-infected peripheral B lymphocytes in vivo in Holstein cattle. However, the specific BoLA class II allele and DRB3-DQA1 haplotypes determining the BLV proviral load in Japanese Black cattle are yet to be identified. In this study, we focused on the association of BLV proviral load and polymorphism of BoLA class II in Japanese Black cattle. We genotyped 186 BLV-infected, clinically normal cattle for BoLA-DRB3 and BoLA-DQA1 using a polymerase chain reaction-sequence-based typing method. BoLA-DRB3*0902 and BoLA-DRB3*1101 were associated with a low proviral load (LPVL), and BoLA-DRB3*1601 was associated with a high proviral load (HPVL). Furthermore, BoLA-DQA1*0204 and BoLA-DQA1*10012 were related to LPVL and HPVL, respectively. Furthermore, we confirmed the correlation between the DRB3-DQA1 haplotype and BLV proviral load. Two haplotypes, namely 0902B or C (DRB3*0902-DQA1*0204) and 1101A (DRB3*1101-DQA1*10011), were associated with a low BLV proviral load, whereas one haplotype 1601B (DRB3*1601-DQA1*10012) was associated with a high BLV proviral load. We conclude that resistance is a dominant trait and susceptibility is a recessive trait. Additionally, resistant alleles were common between Japanese Black and Holstein cattle, and susceptible alleles differed. This is the first report to identify an association between the DRB3-DQA1 haplotype and variations in BLV proviral load.

Tanaka M, Kato K, Gomi K, et al.
NUT midline carcinoma: report of 2 cases suggestive of pulmonary origin.
Am J Surg Pathol. 2012; 36(3):381-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
In this study, we report 2 pediatric cases of nuclear protein of the testis (NUT) midline carcinoma (NMC) suggestive of pulmonary origin: case 1 was a 14-year-old Japanese boy and case 2 was a 7-year-old Japanese girl. Initial symptoms of both cases were prolonged cough and chest pain, and the case 2 patient also complained of lumbago and lumbar mass due to bone metastases. Imaging studies revealed that pulmonary tumors from both patients were located at the hilar region of the lower lobe. Biopsies of the tumors showed undifferentiated carcinoma in case 1 and combined undifferentiated and squamous cell carcinoma in case 2. Despite intensive treatment with chemotherapy and radiation, progression of neither tumor was controlled, and both patients died of the tumors at 1 year (case 1) and 4 months (case 2) after onset of disease. Both tumors were diffusely positive for p63 and NUT expression and were partially positive for various cytokeratins. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis and subsequent direct sequencing revealed that the bromodomain-containing protein 4-NUT chimeric gene was present in tumor tissue of both patients, leading to a diagnosis of NMC. The tumor cells of case 1 were also positive for thyroid transcription factor-1 expression, but those of case 2 were negative. Histologic examination of the surgically removed lung tumor of case 1 indicated that the origin of the tumor was basal cells of the bronchiolar epithelia.

Kitada K, Aida S, Aikawa S
Coamplification of multiple regions of chromosome 2, including MYCN, in a single patchwork amplicon in cancer cell lines.
Cytogenet Genome Res. 2012; 136(1):30-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Coamplification of multiple segments of chromosome 2, including an MYCN-bearing segment, was examined in 2 cancer cell lines, NCI-H69 (lung cancer) and IMR-32 (neuroblastoma). High-resolution array-CGH analysis revealed 13 and 6 highly amplified segments located at different sites in chromosome 2 in NCI-H69 and IMR-32, respectively. FISH analysis demonstrated that these segments were co-localized in double minutes in NCI-H69 and in homogeneously staining regions in IMR-32. Connectivity of the segments was determined by a PCR assay using designed primer sets. It was found that all the segments were connected to each other irrespective of their order and orientation against the genome sequence, and a single chain-like cluster was configured in both cell lines. Such patchwork structures of the amplicons suggest the possibility that massive genomic rearrangements, explained by the single catastrophic event model, are involved in the formation of the amplicons, enabling the coamplification of different chromosomal regions including the MYCN locus. The model comprises massive fragmentation of chromosomes and random rejoining of the fragments.

Udagawa T, Narumi K, Goto N, et al.
Syngeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation enhances the antitumor immunity of intratumoral type I interferon gene transfer for sarcoma.
Hum Gene Ther. 2012; 23(2):173-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
Sarcoma at advanced stages remains a clinically challenging disease. Interferons (IFNs) can target cancer cells by multiple antitumor activities, including the induction of cancer cell death and enhancement of immune response. However, the development of an effective cancer immunotherapy is often difficult, because cancer generates an immunotolerant microenvironment against the host immune system. An autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is expected to reconstitute a fresh immune system, and expand tumor-specific T cells through the process of homeostatic proliferation. Here we examined whether a combination of autologous HSCT and IFNs could induce an effective tumor-specific immune response against sarcoma. First, we found that a type I IFN gene transfer significantly suppressed the cell growth of various sarcoma cell lines, and that IFN-β gene transfer was more effective in inducing cell death than was IFN-α in sarcoma cells. Then, to examine the antitumor effect in vivo, human sarcoma cells were inoculated in immune-deficient mice, and a lipofection of an IFN-β-expressing plasmid was found to suppress the growth of subcutaneous tumors significantly. Finally, the IFN gene transfer was combined with syngeneic HSCT in murine osteosarcoma models. Intratumoral IFN-β gene transfer markedly suppressed the growth of vector-injected tumors and inhibited formation of spontaneous lung and liver metastases in syngeneic HSCT mice, and an infiltration of many immune cells was recognized in metastatic tumors of the treated mice. The treated mice showed no significant adverse events. A combination of intratumoral IFN gene transfer with autologous HSCT could be a promising therapeutic strategy for patients with sarcoma.

Avvisati G, Lo-Coco F, Paoloni FP, et al.
AIDA 0493 protocol for newly diagnosed acute promyelocytic leukemia: very long-term results and role of maintenance.
Blood. 2011; 117(18):4716-25 [PubMed] Related Publications
All-trans-retinoic acid (ATRA) has greatly modified the prognosis of acute promyelocytic leukemia; however, the role of maintenance in patients in molecular complete remission after consolidation treatment is still debated. From July 1993 to May 2000, 807 genetically proven newly diagnosed acute promyelocytic leukemia patients received ATRA plus idarubicin as induction, followed by 3 intensive consolidation courses. Thereafter, patients reverse-transcribed polymerase chain reaction-negative for the PML-RARA fusion gene were randomized into 4 arms: oral 6-mercaptopurine and intramuscular methotrexate (arm 1); ATRA alone (arm 2); 3 months of arm1 alternating to 15 days of arm 2 (arm 3); and no further therapy (arm 4). Starting from February 1997, randomization was limited to ATRA-containing arms only (arms 2 and 3). Complete remission was achieved in 761 of 807 (94.3%) patients, and 681 completed the consolidation program. Of these, 664 (97.5%) were evaluated for the PML-RARA fusion gene, and 586 of 646 (90.7%) who tested reverse-transcribed polymerase chain reaction-negative were randomized to maintenance. The event-free survival estimate at 12 years was 68.9% (95% confidence interval, 66.4%-71.4%), and no differences in disease-free survival at 12 years were observed among the maintenance arms.

Ferrara F, Finizio O, Izzo T, et al.
Autologous stem cell transplantation for patients with acute promyelocytic leukemia in second molecular remission.
Anticancer Res. 2010; 30(9):3845-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Relapse still occurs in approximately 20-30% of patients with acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) and, after achievement of second complete remission (CR), the optimal strategy is still controversial. We describe therapeutic results from a series of 13 patients autografted in second molecular remission (MR) by a molecular negative apheresis product. In all patients, the disease was confirmed at the molecular level and all had received the GIMEMA/AIDA protocol, achieving molecular remission at the end of consolidation. Relapse was hematological in 12 cases and molecular in one. After consolidation with chemotherapy, all patients achieved MR and received a further course plus granulocyte-colony stimulating factor as mobilizing therapy. A median of 7.6×10(6) (range 2.7-10) CD34-positive cells/kg were collected. In all cases, molecular evaluation of the apheresis product was negative for the promyelocytic leukemia/retinoic acid receptor alpha gene. No case of transplant-related mortality was recorded. No maintenance or consolidation therapy after autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) was given to any patient. After a median follow-up of 25 months from ASCT, 10 patients are alive in sustained MR, while two relapsed after ASCT and died in the setting of refractory disease; one patient achieved a third CR and is waiting for allogeneic SCT. These results suggest that ASCT performed with a molecularly negative graft in APL patients in second MR offers a valid chance for achieving a cure. Such an approach should also be considered in relapsed patients with an HLA-compatible donor, namely in those with a first CR lasting more than one year or in unfit or elderly individuals.

Arai T, Kasahara I, Sawabe M, et al.
Role of methylation of the hMLH1 gene promoter in the development of gastric and colorectal carcinoma in the elderly.
Geriatr Gerontol Int. 2010; 10 Suppl 1:S207-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
The occurrence of malignant neoplasms increases with advancing age. Although aging and carcinogenesis are basically different processes, they share phenomena such as the accumulation of DNA damage and abnormal proteins. Recent advances in molecular biology have shown an accumulation of genetic and epigenetic changes in both aging and carcinogenesis, as well as the alteration of metabolism, immunosenescence and shortened telomeres. DNA methylation is a representative epigenetic phenomenon and is frequently involved in controlling gene functions during development and tumorigenesis. We herein focused on methylation of genes in the development of gastrointestinal carcinomas in the elderly. The proportion of gastric and colorectal carcinomas with hypermethylation of the hMLH1 promoter increases with age, reaching 25-30% of all carcinomas of the stomach and large intestine in elderly patients. These tumors have clinicopathological and molecular characteristics such as loss of hMLH1 expression, microsatellite instability, poorly differentiated histology, peritumoral inflammatory cell infiltration, low incidence of lymph node metastasis and favorable prognosis. However, methylation-related carcinogenesis accounts for up to approximately one-third of tumors, and other mechanisms; for example chromosomal instability as a result of telomere dysfunction, are responsible for the development of most carcinomas in the elderly.

Miyai K, Yamamoto S, Aida S, et al.
Massive intra-abdominal undifferentiated carcinoma derived from an endometrioid adenocarcinoma in a "normal-sized" ovary.
Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2010; 29(4):321-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
We report a case of massive intra-abdominal undifferentiated carcinoma derived from a tiny well-differentiated endometrioid adenocarcinoma of the ovary. The patient, a 56-year-old woman, who presented with a large intra-abdominal mass, underwent cytoreductive surgery with hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. Macroscopically, the intra-abdominal mass was composed of fragile and solid tumor components with extensive necro-hemorrhagic areas, mimicking a primary peritoneal tumor. Both ovaries were apparently normal in size, but a cut section of the right ovary revealed a 2-cm solid and cystic tumor showing focal rupture to the peritoneal surface. The intra-abdominal tumor consisted of pleomorphic cells without specific differentiation, showing diffuse sheet-like proliferation. The right ovarian tumor was a histologically well-differentiated endometrioid adenocarcinoma. Both the intra-abdominal undifferentiated tumor and the ovarian adenocarcinoma cells were immunohistochemically positive for keratin AE1/3, Ber-EP4, and CD10. Epithelial membrane antigen was positive only in the ovarian adenocarcinoma component, and vimentin was diffusely positive only in the intra-abdominal undifferentiated tumor component. Calretinin was negative in both tumor components. Allelotype analysis using 24 polymorphic markers located on 12 chromosomal arms showed that the intra-abdominal undifferentiated carcinoma and ovarian adenocarcinoma components had a high concordance rate (88%) of allelic patterns including identical allelic loss patterns at 7 chromosomal loci, suggesting a common genetic lineage. These data suggest that ovarian endometrioid adenocarcinoma, even when small in size, can give rise to a massive undifferentiated carcinoma filling the peritoneal cavity.

Ogata S, Ozeki Y, Nakanishi K, et al.
A pilot study of mRNA expressions of 5-fluorouracil pathway genes in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and tumor tissues in patients with lung adenocarcinoma.
Lung Cancer. 2011; 71(2):199-204 [PubMed] Related Publications
To assess whether early lung cancer prediction might be informed by an mRNA assay for 5-fluorouracil pathway genes in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMNCs), we examined specimens taken from 51 adenocarcinoma patients and 38 controls (including six patients with benign tumors). PBMNCs and tumor-tissue specimens were taken for measurement of the mRNAs of various 5-fluorouracil pathway genes [thymidylate synthase (TS), dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (DPD), thymidine phosphorylase (TP), and orotate phosphoribosyl transferase (OPRT)]. By quantitative RT-PCR, all four mRNAs were detected in both PBMNCs and tumor tissues. In PBMNCs, TS mRNA/GAPDH mRNA levels were significantly higher in adenocarcinoma patients than in the controls, and significantly higher for pathological stages 2-4 and lymph-node involvement pN1-pN3 than for pathological stage 1 and pN0, respectively. No correlation between PBMNCs and tumor-tissue specimens was found for the level of any mRNA. Thus, the measurement of TS mRNA in PBMNCs might aid the diagnosis of lung adenocarcinoma.

Kawasaki T, Yokoi S, Tsuda H, et al.
BCL2L2 is a probable target for novel 14q11.2 amplification detected in a non-small cell lung cancer cell line.
Cancer Sci. 2007; 98(7):1070-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Amplification of chromosomal DNA is thought to be one of the mechanisms that activates cancer-related genes in tumors. In a previous genome-wide screening of DNA copy number aberrations in a panel of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines using an in-house bacterial artificial chromosome-based array, we identified a novel amplification at 14q11.2 in HUT29 cells derived from human lung adenocarcinoma. To identify the most likely target for the 14q11.2 amplification, we determined the extent of the amplicon by fluorescence in situ hybridization and then analyzed NSCLC cell lines for the expression levels of 28 genes present within the 1-Mb amplified region. Significant overexpression in the HUT29 cell line with amplification, relatively frequent overexpression in additional NSCLC cell lines compared with an immortalized normal lung epithelial cell line, and reported information about the function of each candidate gene prompted us to characterize the BCL2-like2 (BCL2L2) gene, a prosurvival member of the BCL2 family, as the most likely target for the 14q11.2 amplicon. Immunohistochemical analysis of 61 primary cases of lung adenocarcinoma demonstrated that BCL2L2 overexpression was significantly associated with tumor stage and differentiation status, and tended to be associated with a poorer prognosis. Downregulation of BCL2L2 expression using small interfering RNA dramatically inhibited the growth of HUT29 cells, but showed no effect on anticancer reagent-induced cell death of the same cell line. These findings demonstrate that overexpressed BCL2L2, through amplification or other mechanisms, promotes the growth of NSCLC, especially the adenocarcinoma subtype, and might be a therapeutic target.

Santamaría C, Chillón MC, Fernández C, et al.
Using quantification of the PML-RARalpha transcript to stratify the risk of relapse in patients with acute promyelocytic leukemia.
Haematologica. 2007; 92(3):315-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The detection of PML-RARalpha by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RQ-PCR) is becoming an important tool for monitoring minimal residual disease (MRD) in patients with acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL). However, its clinical value remains to be determined. Our aim was to analyze any associations between the risk of relapse and RQ-PCR results in different phases of treatment, comparing these data with those yielded by conventional qualitative reverse transcriptase-PCR.
DESIGN AND METHODS: Follow-up samples from 145 APL patients treated with the PETHEMA protocols were evaluated by the RQ-PCR protocol (Europe Against Cancer program) and by the RT-PCR method (BIOMED-1 Concerted Action). Hematologic and molecular relapses and relapse-free survival were recorded. We then looked for associations between relapse risk and RQ-PCR results.
RESULTS: After induction therapy, no association was found between positive RQ-PCR results and relapse. The PCR result here did not imply any change in the scheduled therapy. After the third consolidation course, two out of three cases with positive RQ-PCR relapsed in contrast to 16 out of 119 (13%) patients with negative RQ-PCR. During maintenance therapy and out-of treatment, all patients with >10 PML-RARalpha normalized copy number (NCN) (n=19) relapsed while all patients with <1 NCN at the end of the study remained in hematologic remission (p<0.0001). In the intermediate group (NCN 1-10) (n=18), the relapse-free survival at 5 years was 60%. Hematologic relapses were predicted if a positive RQ-PCR result had been obtained in a follow-up sample within the previous 4 months.
INTERPRETATION AND CONCLUSIONS: Based on the information provided by RQ-PCR in samples obtained after the end of consolidation and subsequently, a relapse risk stratification could be established for APL patients. This stratification divides patients into three groups: those at high risk of relapse, those with an intermediate risk and those with a low risk of relapse.

Arai T, Kasahara I, Sawabe M, et al.
Microsatellite-unstable mucinous colorectal carcinoma occurring in the elderly: comparison with medullary type poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma.
Pathol Int. 2007; 57(4):205-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
Mucinous carcinoma and poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma of the large intestine have a high frequency of microsatellite instability, and their occurrence increases gradually with age. To elucidate the clinicopathological and immunohistochemical features of microsatellite-unstable mucinous carcinoma and compare the tumor with medullary type poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma, the clinicopathological status and expression of mucin core and hMLH1 proteins were studied in 15 microsatellite-unstable and 20 microsatellite-stable mucinous colorectal carcinomas occurring in elderly patients, and compared with 23 cases of medullary type poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma in which 21 cases were microsatellite-unstable. Thirteen (87%) of 15 microsatellite-unstable carcinomas exhibited absent hMLH1 expression compared with three (15%) of 20 microsatellite-stable carcinomas (P < 0.01). The proportion (87%) of positive MUC5AC expression in microsatellite-unstable mucinous carcinoma was significantly higher than that (45%) in microsatellite-stable mucinous carcinoma (P = 0.01). Compared with microsatellite-stable mucinous carcinoma, microsatellite-unstable mucinous carcinomas were significantly associated with a proximal location, intra- and peritumoral inflammatory cell infiltration, frequent MUC5AC expression, a low incidence of lymph node metastasis and absent hMLH1 protein expression, which is not different to medullary type poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma except for MUC2 expression and age-related occurrence. These results suggest that microsatellite-unstable mucinous carcinoma occurring in the elderly shares clinicopathological and molecular features with medullary type poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma and that microsatellite instability with absent hMLH1 expression plays an important role in the development of these two carcinomas.

Arai T, Sugai T, Kasahara I, et al.
Age-related alteration in the association of microsatellite instability with absent hMLH1 expression and histological types of colorectal carcinoma.
Pathol Int. 2006; 56(10):597-603 [PubMed] Related Publications
Microsatellite instability (MSI) is present in approximately 15-20% of sporadic colorectal cancers. However, despite the increased prevalence of absent hMLH1 expression and MSI in colorectal cancer in the elderly, few attempts have been made to define it in detail. The aim of the present paper was to correlate age-related alterations in absent hMLH1 expression and MSI with various histological types of colorectal carcinoma. hMLH1 expression and microsatellite status were studied in 184 colorectal carcinomas (49 well-differentiated, 49 moderately differentiated, 49 poorly differentiated adenocarcinomas, and 37 mucinous carcinomas). The prevalence of absent hMLH1 expression was higher in poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma (63%) and mucinous carcinoma (43%) than in well- (8%) and moderately (12%) differentiated adenocarcinomas. MSI was found more frequently in poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma (69%) and mucinous carcinoma (41%) than in well- and moderately differentiated adenocarcinomas (8% and 6%, respectively). Age-related differences in absent hMLH1 expression and MSI were found only in poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma, in which the prevalence of medullary-type carcinoma increased with advancing age. These results indicate that an age-related increase of medullary-type tumors in poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma may play an important role in the increase of absent hMLH1 expression and MSI in colorectal carcinoma.

Dowa Y, Yamamoto T, Abe Y, et al.
Congenital neuroblastoma in a patient with partial trisomy of 2p.
J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2006; 28(6):379-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
We report the fourth example of a patient with germline partial trisomy of 2p21-pter and congenital neuroblastoma. The male infant had a dysmorphic facial expression and presented with congenital heart disease, supernumerary nipples, hypospadias, shawl scrotum, hemilateral persistent hyperplastic primary vitreous, and neuroblastoma. His germline karyotype of 46,XY,der(8)t(2;8)(p21;p23.2) was inherited from a maternal-balanced translocation, which indicates that the proto-oncogene MYCN region of 2p24.3 is tripicated in germline cells. A cytogenetic study of the biopsied tumor cells did not show MYCN amplification, but the DNA index was 2.4 and histologic fluorescent in situ hybridization analysis indicated somatic mutation with near-pentaploidy of the tumor cells. This could be an alternative mechanism of MYCN activation in the process of the tumorigenesis of neuroblastoma.

Yamamoto G, Irie T, Aida T, et al.
Correlation of invasion and metastasis of cancer cells, and expression of the RAD21 gene in oral squamous cell carcinoma.
Virchows Arch. 2006; 448(4):435-41 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although RAD21 is involved in the repair of double-strand breaks in DNA and is essential for mitotic growth, its role in cancer has been unclear. In this study, the relevance of RAD21 gene expression to the invasion and metastasis of oral squamous cell carcinoma was clarified using laser microdissection and real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Using two different metastatic potential oral squamous cells [high-metastatic-potential squamous cell carcinoma cells (SAS-Ly) and low-metastatic-potential squamous cell carcinoma cells (SAS)], the relation of RAD21 gene expression to apoptosis, invasion, and metastasis was examined. The results showed that RAD21 gene expression was significantly decreased in oral squamous cell carcinoma when it expressed the INFbeta and INFgamma invasion patterns in comparison with the INFalpha invasion pattern (p<0.01). In addition, in comparison with SAS cells, SAS-Ly cells indicated tolerance to cell death induced by an apoptosis induction reagent, while the expression level of the RAD21 gene in SAS cells was increased by the apoptosis induction reagent. However, in SAS-Ly cells, the reagent induced no significant difference. Our findings indicate that the RAD21 gene was closely related to the invasion and metastasis of cancer cells.

Salameh A, Dhein S
Pharmacology of gap junctions. New pharmacological targets for treatment of arrhythmia, seizure and cancer?
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2005; 1719(1-2):36-58 [PubMed] Related Publications
Intercellular communication in many organs is maintained via intercellular gap junction channels composed of connexins, a large protein family with a number of isoforms. This gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) allows the propagation of action potentials (e.g., in brain, heart), and the transfer of small molecules which may regulate cell growth, differentiation and function. The latter has been shown to be involved in cancer growth: reduced GJIC often is associated with increased tumor growth or with de-differentiation processes. Disturbances of GJIC in the heart can cause arrhythmia, while in brain electrical activity during seizures seems to be propagated via gap junction channels. Many diseases or pathophysiological conditions seem to be associated with alterations of gap junction protein expression. Thus, depending on the target disease opening or closure of gap junctions may be of interest, or alteration of connexin expression. GJIC can be affected acutely by changing gap junction conductance or--more chronic--by altering connexin expression and membrane localisation. This review gives an overview on drugs affecting GJIC.

Kaul SC, Aida S, Yaguchi T, et al.
Activation of wild type p53 function by its mortalin-binding, cytoplasmically localizing carboxyl terminus peptides.
J Biol Chem. 2005; 280(47):39373-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Hsp70 family member mortalin (mot-2/mthsp70/GRP75) binds to a carboxyl terminus region of the tumor suppressor protein p53. By in vivo co-immunoprecipitation of mot-2 with p53 and its deletion mutants, we earlier mapped the mot-2-binding site of p53 to its carboxyl terminus 312-352 amino acid residues. In the present study we attempted to disrupt mot-2-p53 interactions by overexpression of short p53 carboxyl-terminal peptides. We report that p53 carboxyl-terminal peptides (amino acid residues 312-390, 312-352, 323-390, and 323-352) localize in the cytoplasm, whereas 312-322, 337-390, 337-352, and 352-390 locate mostly in the nucleus. Most interestingly, the cytoplasmically localizing p53 peptides harboring the residues 323-337 activated the endogenous p53 function by displacing it from p53-mortalin complexes and relocating it to the nucleus. Such activation of p53 function was sufficient to cause growth arrest of human osteosarcoma and breast carcinoma cells.

Nakanishi K, Matsuo H, Kanai Y, et al.
LAT1 expression in normal lung and in atypical adenomatous hyperplasia and adenocarcinoma of the lung.
Virchows Arch. 2006; 448(2):142-50 [PubMed] Related Publications
No previous study has investigated neutral large amino acid transporter type 1 (LAT1) in normal lung cells, or in atypical adenomatous hyperplasia(s) (AAH) and nonmucinous bronchioloalveolar carcinoma(s) (NMBAC) of the lung. The authors examined: (1) the levels of LAT1 mRNA/glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) mRNA in 41 normal lung tissues and 34 NMBAC using semiquantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction; (2) LAT1 mRNA and protein expressions in 35 normal lung tissues, 34 AAH (11 lesions were interpreted as low-grade AAH and 23 as high-grade AAH), and 43 NMBAC using in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry; and (2) the association of the incidences of LAT1 mRNA and protein expressions with cell proliferation in these lesions. The level of LAT1 mRNA/GAPDH mRNA (1) tended to be higher in NMBAC (12.0+/-8.1) than in normal lung tissues (1.0+/-0.2), and (2) covered a much wider range (from 0 to 276) in NMBAC than in normal lung tissues (from 0 to 5.8), with six NMBAC having values higher than 7.0, while 5.8 was the highest value detected in normal lung tissues. In peripheral normal lung tissues, LAT1 mRNA and protein were detected in bronchial surface epithelial cells and alveolar macrophages (but not in nonciliated bronchiolar epithelial cells, or in alveolar type I or type II cells). In bronchial surface epithelial cells, LAT1 protein appeared to be of a nodular type, which was considered to be a nonfunctional protein pattern. The incidences of positive expressions for LAT1 mRNA and protein were 54.5 and 27.3% in low-grade AAH, 65.2 and 52.2% in high-grade AAH, and 65.1 and 79.1% in NMBAC, respectively. In the case of LAT1 protein expression, significant differences could be shown between total (low-grade plus high-grade) AAH and NMBAC, and between low-grade AAH and NMBAC. Thus, in terms of the incidence of LAT1 protein expression, high-grade AAH appeared intermediate between low-grade AAH and NMBAC. The Ki-67 labeling index (a cell proliferation score) was significantly higher in those AAH and NMBAC that were LTA1-protein-positive than in their LAT1-protein-negative counterparts. In conclusion, LAT1 expression may increase with the upregulation of metabolic activity and cell proliferation in high-grade AAH and NMBAC.

Wadhwa R, Takano S, Kaur K, et al.
Identification and characterization of molecular interactions between mortalin/mtHsp70 and HSP60.
Biochem J. 2005; 391(Pt 2):185-90 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mortalin/mtHsp70 (mitochondrial Hsp70) and HSP60 (heat-shock protein 60) are heat-shock proteins that reside in multiple subcellular compartments, with mitochondria being the predominant one. In the present study, we demonstrate that the two proteins interact both in vivo and in vitro, and that the N-terminal region of mortalin is involved in these interactions. Suppression of HSP60 expression by shRNA (short hairpin RNA) plasmids caused the growth arrest of cancer cells similar to that obtained by suppression of mortalin expression by ribozymes. An overexpression of mortalin, but not of HSP60, extended the in vitro lifespan of normal fibroblasts (TIG-1). Taken together, this study for the first time delineates: (i) molecular interactions of HSP60 with mortalin; (ii) their co- and exclusive localizations in vivo; (iii) their involvement in tumorigenesis; and (iv) their functional distinction in pathways involved in senescence.

Nakanishi K, Hiroi S, Tominaga S, et al.
Expression of hypoxia-inducible factor-1alpha protein predicts survival in patients with transitional cell carcinoma of the upper urinary tract.
Clin Cancer Res. 2005; 11(7):2583-90 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1), identified as one of the transcription factors, has been found to play an essential role in oxygen homeostasis. HIF-1 is a heterodimer composed of HIF-1alpha and HIF-1beta. Increased levels of HIF-1alpha have been reported during the carcinogenesis and progress of several tumors. We investigated the prognostic importance of HIF-1alpha expression in transitional cell carcinoma of the upper urinary tract. In 127 cases of transitional cell carcinoma of the upper urinary tract, we examined its expression (using immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization), and also its relation to the expression of p53 oncoprotein, as well as to proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) immunoreactivity, microvessel density, clinicopathologic parameters, and clinical outcome. A positive expression of HIF-1alpha protein was recognized in 55.1% of samples, the expression being apparent within the nucleus in tumor cells. HIF-1alpha protein expression correlated with grade, growth pattern, p53 oncoprotein expression, and PCNA index, but not with stage. Furthermore, a significant correlation was found between HIF-1alpha protein expression and both overall and disease-free survival rates in the univariate and multivariate analyses (in all tumors and in invasive tumors). A positive expression of HIF-1alpha mRNA was recognized in 69.6% of 125 samples which were available, the expression being apparent within the cytoplasm in tumor cells. The positive expression of HIF-1alpha mRNA by in situ hybridization correlated significantly with HIF-1alpha protein expression by immunohistochemistry. HIF-1alpha mRNA expression only correlated with pattern of growth (P = 0.0078). In conclusion, the detection of HIF-1alpha protein would seem to be of value in informing the prognosis of transitional cell carcinoma of the upper urinary tract.

Kimura M, Tsuda H, Morita D, et al.
A proposal for diagnostically meaningful criteria to classify increased epidermal growth factor receptor and c-erbB-2 gene copy numbers in gastric carcinoma, based on correlation of fluorescence in situ hybridization and immunohistochemical measurements.
Virchows Arch. 2004; 445(3):255-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Amplification of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and/or c-erbB-2 oncogenes and overexpression of their proteins are detected in 30% of gastric carcinomas, but there are few reports regarding the correlation between gene amplification and protein overexpression. We examined the correlation between amplification of the EGFR and c-erbB-2 genes, detected using fluorescence in situ hybridization, and overexpression of their proteins, detected using immunohistochemistry, in formalin-fixed tissue sections of 54 surgically resected gastric carcinomas. A mean EGFR copy number per nucleus of four or more and an EGFR/chromosome 7 centromere (CEP7) ratio of 1.7 or more were each detected in 4 specimens (7%). The sensitivity and specificity of both criteria for EGFR protein overexpression were 75% and 92%, respectively. A mean c-erbB-2 copy number per nucleus of 7.0 or more and a c-erbB-2/chromosome 17 centromere (CEP17) ratio of 2.0 or more were detected in six (11%) and eight (15%) specimens, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of the former criterion to c-erbB-2 overexpression were 83% and 98%, respectively, while those of the latter were 63% and 98%. A mean EGFR gene copy number of 4.0 or more and/or an EGFR/CEP7 ratio of 1.7 and a mean c-erbB-2 gene copy number of 7.0 or more and/or a c-erbB-2/CEP17 ratio of 2.0 or more would be useful in defining increased EGFR and c-erbB-2 gene copy numbers, respectively, in gastric carcinomas.

Tsuchiya R, Yamamoto G, Nagoshi Y, et al.
Expression of adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) in tumorigenesis of human oral squamous cell carcinoma.
Oral Oncol. 2004; 40(9):932-40 [PubMed] Related Publications
The product of the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) tumor suppressor gene has been observed to regulate the Wnt signaling pathway through beta-catenin. In the present study, we attempted to clarify the relation between APC and the canceration of oral squamous epithelium. Each target tissue of normal squamous epithelium, epithelial dysplasia, and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) was recovered the oral SCC case by laser microdissection. In recovered cells, we examined the change in expression of APC and beta-catenin gene transcription products, as well as the existence of mutations in APC gene. We analyzed the localization of each protein of APC and beta-catenin by immunohistochemical study. We found a clear change in the expression level of the gene transcription product of APC in canceration of oral squamous epithelium and the differentiation of oral SCC. In addition, there was some change in the localization of the APC protein in canceration. It was not clear, however, whether the APC was mutated. A change was also observed in the expression level of the beta-catenin gene transcription product during the differentiation of oral SCC. Our results suggest that the changes in the expression level and the intracellular localization of APC are related to the canceration of oral squamous epithelium, and in malignant characterization of oral SCC. Mutations of the APC gene might not be indispensable, however, in canceration of oral squamous epithelium.

Kato K, Nakatani Y, Kanno H, et al.
Possible linkage between specific histological structures and aberrant reactivation of the Wnt pathway in adamantinomatous craniopharyngioma.
J Pathol. 2004; 203(3):814-21 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study concerns the significance of nuclear/cytoplasmic expression of beta-catenin and mutation of the beta-catenin gene in craniopharyngiomas. Fourteen adamantinomatous type and one squamous papillary type craniopharyngiomas were studied. Histologically, 13 of 14 adamantinomatous type craniopharyngiomas showed typical features, ie mixtures of 'palisading cells', 'stellate cells', and 'ghost cells'. In addition, 'whorl-like arrays' of epithelial cells were frequently observed in the areas of stellate cells. On immunohistochemistry, all typical adamantinomatous type craniopharyngiomas showed nuclear/cytoplasmic expression of beta-catenin predominantly in cohesive cells within the whorl-like arrays and in cells transitional towards ghost cells, where immunoreactivity for Ki-67 was almost absent. The cohesive cells in the whorl-like arrays also demonstrated loss of cytokeratin isoform expression. Using direct sequencing of amplified nucleic acids, nine of the 13 typical adamantinomatous type craniopharyngiomas with nuclear beta-catenin accumulation showed heterozygous one-base substitution mutation of the beta-catenin gene. The other unusual adamantinomatous type and squamous papillary type craniopharyngiomas showed no obvious nuclear/cytoplasmic beta-catenin immunoreactivity and no mutation of the beta-catenin gene, suggesting molecular heterogeneity. These findings suggest that the pathogenesis of typical adamantinomatous type craniopharyngioma is associated with abnormalities of Wnt signalling that act as a morphogenetic signal towards whorl-like arrays and ghost cells rather than as simple proliferation stimuli.

Irié T, Aida T, Tachikawa T
Gene expression profiling of oral squamous cell carcinoma using laser microdissection and cDNA microarray.
Med Electron Microsc. 2004; 37(2):89-96 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancer diagnosis and therapy are performed on the basis of clinical stage and clinicopathological findings; however, sensitivity to therapy and prognosis may not always be the same even when considering similar cancers because it is difficult to recognize adequate biological characteristics of a cancer when determining cancer therapy. To enable personalized medicine for cancer diagnosis and therapy, which may solve this problem, we used laser microdissection and cDNA microarrays to study the gene expression profile of oral squamous cell carcinoma. Moreover, to establish an objective evaluation with this system, we examined which type of gene expression profile corresponded to the biological characteristics of this cancer. We identified several genes that were up- or downregulated in the majority of cases and clarified genes sharing common behavioral profiles between metastasis-positive and metastasis-negative cases. It was suspected that the genes that were commonly up- or downregulated in the majority of cases were important for histogenesis and acquisition of invasion and proliferation capability and that the genes sharing common behavioral profiles between metastasis-positive and metastasis-negative cases played a large role in cancer metastasis. Using the expression profile of these genes, it may be possible to evaluate cellular state and metastatic potential and use them as tumor markers. Alternately, we showed averaged gene expression profiles in cases with or without metastasis; this may reveal a profile that could evaluate metastatic potential, which is an important element in the biological characteristics of cancer. In conclusion, our system using laser microdissection and cDNA microarray may contribute to cancer diagnosis and therapy and improvement in the quality of life of cancer patients.

Ulvila J, Arpiainen S, Pelkonen O, et al.
Regulation of Cyp2a5 transcription in mouse primary hepatocytes: roles of hepatocyte nuclear factor 4 and nuclear factor I.
Biochem J. 2004; 381(Pt 3):887-94 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The cytochrome P4502a5 (Cyp2a5) gene is expressed principally in liver and olfactory mucosa. In the present study, the transcriptional mechanisms of hepatocyte-specific expression of Cyp2a5 were studied in mouse primary hepatocytes. The Cyp2a5 5'-flanking region -3033 to +10 was cloned in front of a luciferase reporter gene and transfected into hepatocytes. Deletion analysis revealed two major activating promoter regions localized at proximal 271 bp and at a more distal area from -3033 to -2014 bp. The proximal activation region was characterized further by DNase I footprinting, and a single clear footprint was detected in the studied area centred over a sequence similar to the NF-I (nuclear factor I)-binding site. The binding of NF-I was confirmed using an EMSA (electrophoretic mobility-shift assay). A putative HNF-4 (hepatocyte nuclear factor 4)-binding site was localized at the proximal promoter by computer analysis of the sequence, and HNF-4alpha was shown to interact with the site using an EMSA. The functional significance of HNF-4 and NF-I binding to the Cyp2a5 promoter was evaluated by site-directed mutagenesis of the binding motifs in reporter constructs. Both mutations strongly decreased transcriptional activation by the Cyp2a5 promoter in primary hepatocytes, and double mutation almost completely abolished transcriptional activity. Also, the functionality of the distal activation region was found to be dependent on the intact HNF-4 and NF-I sites at the proximal promoter. In conclusion, these results indicate that HNF-4 and NF-I play major roles in the constitutive regulation of hepatic expression of Cyp2a5.

Ghersi E, Vito P, Lopez P, et al.
The intracellular localization of amyloid beta protein precursor (AbetaPP) intracellular domain associated protein-1 (AIDA-1) is regulated by AbetaPP and alternative splicing.
J Alzheimers Dis. 2004; 6(1):67-78 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Amyloid-beta Protein Precursor (AbetaPP) is a widely expressed transmembrane protein that is extensively processed in intracellular vesicular compartments and on the cell membrane. As a result of two sequential proteolytic cleavages, AbetaPP releases the Amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptide, which accumulates in insoluble plaques in the brain of patients affected by Alzheimer's Disease (AD). Another peptide, a C-terminal fragment named AbetaPP Intracellular Domain (AID), is generated by AbetaPP processing and is released intracellularly. Several functions for AID have been proposed: pro-apoptotic peptide, regulator of calcium homeostasis, molecule involved in transcriptional regulation. Many intracellular proteins, such as Fe65, Jip-1, Shc, Numb and X11alpha, interact with AID and modulate its function by different mechanisms. Here we report the cloning and initial characterization of two isoforms of a novel protein that we named AID Associated protein-1a (AIDA-1a), AIDA-1b and AIDA-1bDeltaAnk. We show that AbetaPP and the AIDA-1 proteins interact in vitro, in living cells and, endogenously, in leukemia cell lines. Transfected AIDA-1a, AIDA-1b and AIDA-1bDeltaAnk localize in different compartments and the intracellular distribution of AIDA-1a can be modified by over-expression of AbetaPP. AIDA-1 proteins are expressed at high levels in the brain; thus, studying their involvement in AbetaPP processing and AID function might give new insights regarding a possible role for these molecules in normal brain development and in the pathogenesis of AD.

Onishi A, Nakashiro K, Mihara M, et al.
Basic and clinical studies on quantitative analysis of lymph node micrometastasis in oral cancer.
Oncol Rep. 2004; 11(1):33-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Metastasis to cervical lymph nodes (LN) is significantly associated with the outcome of patients with oral cancer. To provide a useful method for the detection of micrometastases, we analyzed 115 LNs from 10 patients with oral cancer using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based on the expression of squamous cell carcinoma antigen (SCCA) and cytokeratin 13 (CK13). The sensitivity and quantification of this method were assessed by means of limited dilution of cultured oral cancer cells and a model of cervical LN-metastasis established by inoculating green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing cells into the tongue of nude mice. In both investigations, a few cancer cells were detected by real-time quantitative PCR, but not by conventional reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR). SCCA mRNA was detected at high levels in metastatic LNs. In contrast, 26 of the 30 control cervical LNs did not express the gene at all, and the rest showed fairly low levels. Of 108 histologically metastasis-negative LNs, 19 (17.6%) expressed SCCA mRNA levels higher than the cut-off value (1.0: mean expression of control LNs + 2SD). CK13 mRNA is not a suitable marker for the real-time PCR since it was detected frequently even in the control LNs. These findings suggest that genetic diagnosis by real-time quantitative PCR based on SCCA mRNA expression may be clinically useful for detecting occult tumor cells in cervical LNs.

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