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DNA Cell Biol. 2011 Nov;30(11):899-906. doi: 10.1089/dna.2010.1186. Epub 2011 May 25.

Mutational hotspots in the mitochondrial D-loop region of cancerous and precancerous colorectal lesions in Egyptian patients.

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Tropical Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, New Maadi, Cairo, Egypt.


Mutations in the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA) are associated with different types of cancer, specifically colorectal cancer (CRC). However, few studies have been performed on precancerous lesions, such as ulcerative colitis (UC) lesions and adenomatous polyps (AP). The aim of this study was to identify mtDNA mutations in the cancerous and precancerous lesions of Egyptian patients. An analysis of the mutations found in six regions of the mtDNA genome (ND1, ND5, COI, tRNAser, D-loop 1, and 2) in 80 Egyptian patients (40 CRC, 20 UC, and 20 AP) was performed using polymerase chain reaction-single-strand conformational polymorphism techniques and followed up by direct sequencing. The overall incidence of mutations was 25%, 25%, and 35% in CRC, UC, and AP cases, respectively. Although there was no common mutation pattern within each group, a large number of mutations were detected in the D-loop region in all of the groups. Some mutations (e.g., T414G) were detected repeatedly in precancerous (UC and AP) and cancerous lesions. Mutations detected in patients with CRC were predominantly found in the ND1 gene (40%). Our preliminary study suggests that Egyptian patients with CRC have a large number of mtDNA mutations, especially in the D-loop region, which have not been previously reported. Mutations in the mtDNA of precancerous lesions (i.e., AP and UC) may contribute to transformation events that lead to CRC.

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