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Blood. 2001 Dec 1;98(12):3413-20.

The BCL11 gene family: involvement of BCL11A in lymphoid malignancies.

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Academic Department of Haematology and Cytogenetics, Haddow Laboratories, Institute of Cancer Research, Sutton, United Kingdom.


Many malignancies of mature B cells are characterized by chromosomal translocations involving the immunoglobulin heavy chain (IGH) locus on chromosome 14q32.3 and result in deregulated expression of the translocated oncogene. t(2;14)(p13;q32.3) is a rare event in B-cell malignancies. In contrast, gains and amplifications of the same region of chromosome 2p13 have been reported in 20% of extranodal B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas (B-NHL), in follicular and mediastinal B-NHL, and in Hodgkin disease (HD). It has been suggested that REL, an NF-kappaB gene family member, mapping within the amplified region, is the pathologic target. However, by molecular cloning of t(2;14)(p13;q32.3) from 3 cases of aggressive B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)/immunocytoma, this study has shown clustered breakpoints on chromosome 2p13 immediately upstream of a CpG island located about 300 kb telomeric of REL. This CpG island was associated with a Kr├╝ppel zinc finger gene (BCL11A), which is normally expressed at high levels only in fetal brain and in germinal center B-cells. There were 3 major RNA isoforms of BCL11A, differing in the number of carboxy-terminal zinc fingers. All 3 RNA isoforms were deregulated as a consequence of t(2;14)(p13;q32.3). BCL11A was highly conserved, being 95% identical to mouse, chicken, and Xenopus homologues. BCL11A was also highly homologous to another gene (BCL11B) on chromosome 14q32.1. BCL11A coamplified with REL in B-NHL cases and HD lymphoma cell lines with gains and amplifications of 2p13, suggesting that BCL11A may be involved in lymphoid malignancies through either chromosomal translocation or amplification.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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