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Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2008 Jun;17(6):1374-9. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-07-2656. Epub 2008 Jun 9.

BAGE hypomethylation, a new epigenetic biomarker for colon cancer detection.

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  • 1Institut de Génétique Humaine, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique UPR 1142, Montpellier, France.

Abstract

Early detection of colorectal cancer is a decisive step in the successful and complete cure of the disease. Epigenetic markers, in particular, those based on aberrant DNA methylation, can be used to diagnose cancer. B melanoma antigens (BAGE) are a family of genes and truncated genes located in the heterochromatic regions of several human chromosomes. Our previous work showed that BAGE loci (i.e., genes and truncated genes) were hypermethylated in normal tissues and hypomethylated in 98% of human cancers. In the present study, we analyzed DNA methylation of the BAGE loci in 54 colon cancers and in neighboring histopathologic normal tissue samples. Using a combined bisulfite restriction assay, we showed that BAGE loci were hypomethylated in 81% of carcinoma samples. Colon cancer could be diagnosed with 94% specificity, 83% sensitivity, and 89% accuracy. No correlation was found between DNA methylation of BAGE loci and age, gender of patients, nor with the tumor stage or site. Based on the hypothesis that during neoplastic transformation, hypomethylation occurs in juxtacentromeric CpG islands, we suggest that other genes located in the heterochromatic compartment should be tested. These new markers enrich the list of currently studied epigenetic alterations in colon cancer and could be associated with hypermethylation markers to develop reliable diagnostic tests.

PMID:
18541613
DOI:
10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-07-2656
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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