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Neoplasia. 2005 Jul;7(7):688-95.

Loss of heterozygosity occurs predominantly, but not exclusively, in the epithelial compartment of pleomorphic adenoma.

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Institute of Forensic Medicine, University of Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany.


Pleomorphic adenoma (PA), being the most common benign tumor of the salivary glands, is composed of epithelial and mesenchymal compartments. In this study, we analyzed 19 microsatellite markers from chromosomal arms 6q, 8q, 9p, 12q, and 17p in 31 PAs and 3 carcinoma ex pleomorphic adenomas (CXPAs) as well as 11 other non-PA-related carcinomas of the salivary gland for comparison. In our analysis, we differentiated between epithelial and mesenchymal tissues. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in PAs was most often found in 8q (32%) and 12q (29%). Two of the three CXPAs displayed allelic loss at all chromosomal arms investigated, whereas the results of the non-PA-related carcinomas were rather heterogeneous. LOH could not only be detected in the epithelial, but also in the mesenchymal, compartments of a subset of PAs, especially at chromosomal arm 8q. Concerning the CXPAs, we were able to demonstrate allelic losses not only in the malignant epithelial compartment, but also in the residual adenoma parts. Our data give further evidence that alterations in 8q may be an early event in PA tumorigenesis, whereas LOH in 12q may characterize cells with the potential to transform in CXPAs.

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