Short Communication| Volume 42, ISSUE 12, P1698-1701, August 2006

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(CA)n Microsatellite polymorphism of ERBB-1 in breast cancer


      The aim of this study was to determine polymorphism of repeated sequences (CA)n in the ERBB-1 gene. The study group included 197 breast cancer patients and 180 healthy women. DNA was isolated from fresh-frozen tumour tissue and from peripheral blood. ERBB-1 (CA)n microsatellite polymorphism was examined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). A polymorphic simple sequence repeat region of 9–23 CA repeats was detected in both groups. Homozygotes comprised 22% and 34% of breast cancer patients and controls, respectively (P = 0.009). An allelic imbalance (AI), mostly in the shorter allele, was found in 27% of breast cancer patients. AI occurrence was associated with the lack of oestrogen receptors in tumour cells (P = 0.05); otherwise, there were no correlations between histoclinical features and (CA)n microsatellite polymorphism of ERBB-1. It was concluded that an allelic imbalance is a common feature in breast cancer patients and may coincide with the lack of oestrogen receptors in tumour cells. The clinical relevance of ERBB-1 microsatellite polymorphism in breast cancer remains to be established.


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