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Lung Cancer. 2009 May;64(2):155-9. doi: 10.1016/j.lungcan.2008.07.015. Epub 2008 Sep 7.

Aberrant methylation of tumour-related genes in thymic epithelial tumours.

Author information

1
Department of Oncological and Regenerative Surgery, Institute of Health Biosciences, The University of Tokushima Graduate School, Japan.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Thymoma is an uncommon neoplasm derived from epithelial cells of the thymus. Few studies have addressed the genetic alterations that occur in the tumourigenesis of thymoma.

METHODS:

We examined aberrant DNA methylation of DAP-K, p-16, MGMT and HPP1 genes in 26 thymomas and 6 thymic carcinoma to clarify the association between aberrant DNA methylation and clinicopathological features.

RESULTS:

Fifteen (47%) of 32 thymic epithelial tumours showed aberrant methylation. Aberrant methylation was more frequent in thymic carcinoma (86%) than in thymoma (29%). Moreover, the frequency of tumours with methylation of multiple genes in thymic carcinoma was higher than in thymoma (60% vs 20%). In thymoma, the frequency of tumour methylation, including the type A tumour component (28%), was lower than that of tumours with type B tumour component (42%). MGMT methylation was detected in 23% of thymoma and in 83% of thymic carcinoma. The frequency of methylation of the MGMT gene in both tumours was high compared with the other 3 genes.

CONCLUSIONS:

Aberrant DNA methylation was more frequent in thymic carcinoma than in thymoma, and the frequency of DNA methylation in thymic epithelial tumours is roughly parallel to their malignant behaviour.

PMID:
18778870
DOI:
10.1016/j.lungcan.2008.07.015
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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