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Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2000 Oct;29(2):137-46.

Human acid ceramidase is overexpressed but not mutated in prostate cancer.

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Division of Experimental Pathology, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.


The human acid ceramidase gene, that causes Farber disease, is located in 8p22, a region frequently altered in several cancers, including prostate cancer. Acid ceramidase catalyzes the hydrolysis of ceramide, a potent lipid second messenger molecule that promotes apoptosis and inhibits cellular proliferation. It is not known whether this gene, or its expression, is altered in prostate cancer. Here, we report the structural organization of the human gene, its expression in human tissues, and the identification of several single nucleotide polymorphisms. No cancer-related mutations were found in the gene in a panel of prostate tumor DNAs analyzed, but increased expression was observed in prostate tumor tissues when compared with matched normals. This increase was observed in all three prostate tumor cell lines tested (DU145, LnCAP, and PC3) when compared to a BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia) cell line and 15/36 prostate tumors. These results suggest that acid ceramidase may play an important role in prostate carcinogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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