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Mol Cell Biol. May 1987; 7(5): 2019–2023.
PMCID: PMC365313

Amplification of the neu (c-erbB-2) oncogene in human mammmary tumors is relatively frequent and is often accompanied by amplification of the linked c-erbA oncogene.

Abstract

We investigated alterations in the structure and expression of oncogenes in mammary tumors and mammary tumor-derived cell lines. In 16 of 95 samples, we detected amplification of the human neu oncogene, also known as c-erB-2, accompanied by overexpression in the tumors from which intact RNA could be isolated. In 10 of these DNAs, the linked oncogene c-erbA was also amplified, whereas another gene on human chromosome 17, p53, was present in normal copy numbers. Overexpression of c-erbA could not be detected in the tumors analyzed. The relatively high frequency of neu amplification points to a functional role in human breast cancer. Coamplification of the c-erbA oncogene could contribute to this disease as well but is most likely fortuitous.

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