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Am J Surg Pathol. 2001 Oct;25(10):1231-6.

Molecular genetic evidence for different clonal origin of components of human renal angiomyolipomas.

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Department of Pathology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis 46202, USA.


Renal angiomyolipoma is a benign neoplasm composed of variable proportions of blood vessels, smooth muscle, and adipose tissue. Smooth muscle, adipose tissue, blood vessels, and adjacent normal kidney tissue were separately microdissected from sections prepared from formalin-fixed, paraffin-processed tissues from angiomyolipomas from 18 women. X chromosome inactivation analysis using the methylation pattern at exon 1 of the human androgen receptor gene on chromosome Xq11-12 was used to study the clonal origin of each component. Nonrandom inactivation of X chromosomes was found in six of the 15 informative tumors. The smooth muscle and adipose tissue showed differing patterns of nonrandom inactivation of X chromosomes in five angiomyolipomas and the same pattern of nonrandom inactivation of X chromosomes in one. Samples from the blood vessels showed random inactivation of X chromosomes in all informative cases. Our data showed that the adipose tissue and smooth muscle cells of renal angiomyolipoma are both monoclonal but may arise independently. The coexistence of tumor subclones with morphologic heterogeneity can lead to the formation of a clinically detectable tumor.

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