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Br J Cancer. 2013 Jul 9;109(1):68-75. doi: 10.1038/bjc.2013.303. Epub 2013 Jun 27.

Association between ERCC1 and XPA expression and polymorphisms and the response to cisplatin in testicular germ cell tumours.

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Unidad de Investigación Biomédica en Cáncer, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología (INCan)-Instituto de Investigaciones Biomédicas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Avenida San Fernando 22, México D.F. 14080, México.



Cisplatin cures over 80% of testicular germ cell tumours (TGCTs), and nucleotide-excision repair (NER) modifies the sensitivity to cisplatin. We explored the association between NER proteins and their polymorphisms with cisplatin sensitivity (CPS) and overall survival (OS) of patients with non-seminomatous (ns)-TGCTs.


The expression of ERCC1 and XPA and the presence of γH2AX were evaluated in cancer cell lines and in fresh ns-TGCTs. The ERCC1 protein was also determined in ns-TGCTs. The differences between CPS and non-CPS cell lines and patients were analysed by Student's t- or χ(2)-tests. The differences in OS were analysed using the log-rank test, and the hazard ratios (HRs) were calculated using the Cox model.


High ERCC1 expression was observed in the non-CPS cells, and both ERCC1 and γH2AX expressions were augmented after cisplatin treatment. Increased ERCC1 expression was also identified in non-CPS patients. Neither polymorphism was associated with either CPS or OS. The presence of ERCC1 was associated with non-CPS (P=0.05) and adjusted in the prognosis groups. The HR in ERCC1-negative and non-CPS patients was >14.43, and in ERCC1-positive and non-CPS patients the HR was >11.86 (P<0.001).


High levels of ERCC1 were associated with non-CPS, suggesting that ERCC1 could be used as a potential indicator of the response to cisplatin and prognosis in ns-TGCTs.

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