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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1992 Apr 15;89(8):3385-8.

Loss of heterozygosity involving the APC and MCC genetic loci occurs in the majority of human esophageal cancers.

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Department of Medicine (GI Division), University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore.


The tumor suppressor gene APC was recently identified, and the cDNA was cloned from chromosome 5q21. Point mutations affecting APC are seen in the hereditary syndrome familial adenomatous polyposis, and point mutations in APC and a closely linked gene, MCC, as well as loss of heterozygosity involving chromosome 5q have been reported in sporadic colon cancer. To our knowledge, loss of heterozygosity involving APC or MCC or both has not yet been described in any other human cancer besides lung cancer. We used the polymerase chain reaction and DNA content flow cytometric nuclear sorting to examine 30 primary human esophageal cancers for loss of heterozygosity of APC or MCC or both. Loss of one allele was detected in 77% of 26 informative cases. These data suggest that loss of heterozygosity of regions on 5q including the APC and MCC genetic loci is involved in the development and/or progression of most human esophageal cancers. They imply that inactivation of APC, MCC, and/or a linked gene on chromosome 5q plays a role in the pathogenesis of some cancers of the upper gastrointestinal tract, as well as in colon cancer and familial adenomatous polyposis.

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