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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 32

of 'Molecular pathogenesis of exocrine pancreatic cancer'

Genetic alterations of the transforming growth factor beta receptor genes in pancreatic and biliary adenocarcinomas.
Goggins M, Shekher M, Turnacioglu K, Yeo CJ, Hruban RH, Kern SE
Cancer Res. 1998;58(23):5329.
Transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) is an extracellular ligand that binds to a heterodimeric receptor, initiating signals that regulate growth, differentiation, and apoptosis. Many cancers, including pancreatic cancer, harbor defects in TGF-beta signaling and are resistant to TGF-beta-mediated growth suppression. Genetic alterations of DPC4, which encodes a DNA binding protein that is a downstream component of the pathway, most frequently occur in pancreatic and biliary carcinomas. We searched for other targets of mutation of the TGF-beta pathway in these cancers. We report somatic alterations of the TGF-beta type I receptor gene ALK-5. Homozygous deletions of ALK-5 were identified in 1 of 97 pancreatic and 1 of 12 biliary adenocarcinomas. A germ-line variant of ALK-5, presumably a polymorphism, was identified, but no somatic intragenic mutations were identified upon sequencing of all coding regions of ALK-5. Somatic alterations of the TGF-beta type II receptor gene (TGFBR2) were identified in 4 of 97 (4.1%) pancreas cancers, including a homozygous deletion in a replication error-negative cancer and three homozygous frameshift mutations of the poly(A) tract of the TGF-beta type II receptor in replication error-positive cancers. We also studied other related type I receptors of the TGF-beta superfamily. In a panel of pancreas cancers preselected for loss of heterozygosity at the ALK-1 locus, sequencing of all coding exons of the ALK-1 gene revealed no alterations. No homozygous deletions were detected in the ALK-1, ALK-2, ALK-3, or ALK-6 genes in a panel of 86 pancreatic cancer xenografts and 11 pancreatic cancer and 22 breast cancer cell lines. The rate of genetic inactivation of TGF-beta pathway members was determined in 45 pancreatic cancers. Eighty-two % of these pancreatic cancers had genetic inactivation of the DPC4, p15, ALK-5, or TGFBR2 genes. Our results indicate that the TGF-beta type I and type II receptor genes are selective targets of genetic inactivation in pancreatic and biliary cancers.
Department of Oncology, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.