A microsatellite evaluation of the genetic status of the p27Kip1 and p21Cip1/WAF1 genes in oesophageal cancer.
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p21 C/P 1/"El and p 2 7K/P 1 are cyclin-dependant kinase inhibitors that fonn an integral part of the cell cycle process. These proteins function as cell-cycle inhibitors, and are able to induce cell cycle arrest by binding to cyclin complexes at key stages. p21 and p27 have been found to be down-regulated in various cancers. This study investigated aberrations at microsatellite markers linked to the p21 and p27 cell cycle genes, in a large cohort of oesophageal squamous cell carcinomas in South Africa. Fluorescent-based PCR were performed on markers linked to both the p21 and p27. The products were run with a 50-500hp marker on 6% denaturing polyacrylamide gels, on the ALFexpresstm' DNA sequencer. The detection and analysis of PCR products was achieved using the AL F e xp res sT M and Fragment M an a aerTm software programmes. Our findings indicate that markers linked to p27 display infrequent aberrations, with loss of heterozygosity ranging from 19% to 37%, and microsatellite instability at 3% to 7%. However, significant relationships between decreased survival time, and aberrations in markers DI2S391 and Dl2S364, were found to exist. Marker D6S1575 linked to p21 displayed frequent allelic loss at 47%, and was comparable to similar studies on the 6p region Further, LOH-Al in this marker was found to be significantly associated with poorly differentiated tumours. The findings from our study indicate that microsatellite aberrations occur infrequently at the p21 and p27 loci in oesophageal cancer. with the exception of marker D6S1575. In addition,this study clearly demonstrates the accuracy and sensitivity of the technology employed. This is the first microsatellite-based investigation of the p21/p27 gene loci in oesophageal cancer in South Africa, using a fluorescent-based PCR assay.