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J Oral Maxillofac Pathol. 2019 May-Aug;23(2):187-191. doi: 10.4103/jomfp.JOMFP_83_19.

Telomerase in saliva: An assistant marker for oral squamous cell carcinoma.

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Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, King George's Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India.
Department of Biochemistry, King George's Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India.



Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein complex responsible for de novo telomere synthesis and addition of telomeric repeats to existing telomeres. Telomerase activity is generally found to be absent in normal tissues. Telomerase is known to be induced upon malignant transformation of human cells.


In the present study, we analyzed both telomere length and telomerase activity in saliva samples from oral carcinoma patients. The study was done to investigate the presence of telomerase activity in oral squamous cell carcinoma by TRAP assay.


Telomerase activity was detectable in 79 of 100 human OSCC and 51 of 100 premalignant cases and 8 of 100 normal patients.


These results indicate that telomerase is activated frequently during the late stage of oral premalignancy and may play a crucial role in OSCC.


Oral squamous cell carcinoma; saliva; telomerase; telomere

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