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Tumour Biol. 2003 May-Jun;24(3):109-15.

Abnormal expression of gastric mucin in human and rat aberrant crypt foci during colon carcinogenesis.

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  • 1U-482 INSERM, Hôpital St-Antoine, Paris, France.


Colorectal cancer is a major cause of death in Europe and the USA, and much effort is therefore devoted to improve its early detection. In this article, we report the abnormal expression of gastric mucin in aberrant crypt foci (ACF) that appear in the colon mucosae removed from colorectal cancer patients and rats treated with methyl-N'-nitro-N-nitroso-guanidine (MNNG). We performed the immunoperoxidase test using monoclonal antibodies raised against gastric M1 mucin encoded by the MUC5AC gene and against rat gastric mucins (MAb 660), respectively. In both human and rat colon, these anti-gastric mucin MAbs stained specifically goblet cells within ACF. In humans, the M1/MUC5AC mucin was expressed in the upper part of the glands in hyperplastic ACF and in the typical ACF. In addition, the anti-gastric mucin MAbs stained some rare, scattered, histologically normal glands in the human and rat colon mucosae. These glands may be regarded as precursors of ACF. The abnormal expression of the MUC5AC gene constitutes a novel change in addition to genetic modifications already observed in ACF, and supports our previous findings demonstrating the potential of this gastric mucin as an early marker of human and rat colon carcinogenesis.

Copyright 2003 S. Karger AG, Basel

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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