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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1996 Aug 23;1316(3):203-9.

Coordinate expression of nuclear and mitochondrial genes involved in energy production in carcinoma and oncocytoma.

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  • 1Department of Genetics and Molecular Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.


The expression of mitochondrial and nuclear genes involved in ATP production was examined in renal carcinomas, renal oncocytomas, and a salivary oncocytoma. Renal carcinomas were found to have a reduced mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) content while oncocytomas had increased mtDNA contents. This parallels morphological changes in mitochondrial number in these tumours. In the carcinomas, mtDNA transcripts were decreased 5- to 10-fold relative to control kidneys, suggesting that mitochondrial transcript levels depend on the mtDNA content. In renal oncocytomas, mtDNA transcripts were slightly reduced in spite of a high mtDNA content. However, in the salivary gland oncocytoma, mtDNA transcripts were increased more than 10-fold in parallel with a 10-fold increase in mtDNA content. The expression of the nuclear DNA oxidative phosphorylation genes, ATPsyn beta and ANT2, was reduced up to 4-fold in renal carcinoma. In contrast, the levels of these two nuclear gene transcripts were induced about 4-fold in renal oncocytoma and up to 30-fold in salivary gland oncocytoma. Moreover, the ANT2 precursors were observed to change in oncocytomas. These data suggest a coordinated regulation of nuclear and mitochondrial gene expression in renal carcinomas and the specific induction of nuclear OXPHOS gene expression in oncocytomas.

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