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Br J Cancer. 2012 Jan 17;106(2):262-8. doi: 10.1038/bjc.2011.534. Epub 2011 Dec 6.

Severe reaction to radiotherapy for breast cancer as the presenting feature of ataxia telangiectasia.

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  • 1School of Cancer Sciences, College of Medical and Dental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Vincent Drive, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Severe early and late radiation reaction to radiotherapy is extremely rare in breast cancer patients. Such a reaction prompted an investigation into a 44-year-old mother (patient A-T213).

METHODS:

A neurological examination was performed and blood lymphocytes and skin fibroblasts were assessed for radiosensitivity chromosomally and by colony-forming assay. The ATM gene was sequenced and ATM mutations modelled by site-directed mutagenesis. The ATM kinase activity was also assessed.

RESULTS:

Patient A-T213 was normally ambulant with no ataxia and minimal other neurological features. T lymphocytes and skin fibroblasts were unusually radiosensitive, although less sensitive than in classical ataxia telangiectasia (A-T). A lymphoblastoid cell line and skin fibroblasts expressed ATM protein with some retained kinase activity. One missense ATM mutation c.8672G>A (p.Gly2891Asp) and a c.1A>G substitution were identified. In the modelling system, the p.Gly2891Asp mutant protein was expressed and shown to have residual ATM kinase activity.

CONCLUSION:

Patient A-T213 has a milder form of A-T with biallelic ATM mutations, which may have contributed to breast cancer development, and certainly caused the severe radiation reaction. Ataxia telangiectasia should be investigated as a potential cause of untoward severe early and late radiation reactions in breast cancer patients.

PMID:
22146522
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3261689
Free PMC Article

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