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Head Neck. 2012 Oct;34(10):1470-5. doi: 10.1002/hed.21949. Epub 2011 Nov 22.

Promoter methylation and loss of p16(INK4a) gene expression in head and neck cancer.

Author information

1
Department of Basic Oncology, Oncology Institute, Istanbul University, Istanbul, Turkey.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Silencing of tumor suppressor genes plays a vital role in head and neck carcinogenesis. In this study we aimed to evaluate aberrant p16(INK4a) gene promoter methylation in patients with head and neck cancer.

METHODS:

Methylation of the gene was investigated by bisulfite modification/methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction and gene expression levels were analyzed by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction in tumors and matched normal tissue samples from Turkish patients with head and neck cancer.

RESULTS:

The promoter region of the p16(INK4a) gene was methylated in 67.5% and 28.6% of the primary tumors and the corresponding normal tissue, respectively. This difference was highly significant. In concordance, p16(INK4a) gene expression was downregulated in 67.5% of the tumor samples. Methylation and the absence of expression in the tumors were observed in 48% of the patients.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our data indicate that methylation of the p16(INK4a) gene is a frequent event in primary head and neck cancer and that it plays a major role in the silencing of p16(INK4a) gene expression during tumor development.

PMID:
22106032
DOI:
10.1002/hed.21949
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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