Cancer Genet Cytogenet 2008 Nov;187(1):12-8
Laboratory of Human Genetics, Immunology, and Pathology, Faculty of Sciences-Tunis, University of Tunis, Campus Universitaire, El Manar I, Tunis 2092, Tunisia.
Sporadic colorectal tumorigenesis is caused by alterations in the Wnt (APC, CTNNB1) and Ras pathways. Our objective was to analyze the occurrence of these genetic alterations in relation to tumor and patient characteristics. The prevalence of somatic alteration in the hot-spot regions of the APC, BRAF, and CTNNB1 genes was investigated in 48 unselected and unrelated Tunisian patients with sporadic colorectal cancer, and the association between the molecular features at these genes in relation to tumor and patient characteristics (age at diagnosis, sex, tumor localization, stage, and differentiation) was analyzed. Loss of heterozygosity was observed at the APC locus in 52% of the analyzed tumors. 6 novel mutations were detected by polymerase chain reaction sequencing in the mutation cluster region of the APC gene. No mutations were observed in the CTNNB1 gene in any tumor, but 8% of tumors harbored mutation in the BRAF gene. Clinicopathological analyses showed an association between APC point mutations and the earliest occurrence of sporadic colorectal cancer. The findings confirm the heterogeneity of APC gene alteration and also reveal a particular profile of this pathology among Tunisian patients that confirms the epidemiological data for this country.