Key words Anaplastic carcinoma
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Comparative genomic hybridisation (CGH) is a technique which identifies gains and losses of DNA sequence copy number in tumours. We used CGH to search for genetic changes in one of the most aggressive malignancies – anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC). For this purpose, we analysed tumour specimens of nine ATCs and DNA of two ATC cell lines. CGH detected aberrations in 10 of 11 samples, with a mean number of gains or losses per carcinoma of 4.8 (range 0–13). Total or partial changes of chromosome 8 (n=6), including gains or losses of 8p (n=6) or 8q (n=5) were those detected most frequently. Chromosome 5p was amplified in five cases. Gains in two of three samples were found for 3q, 7p, 11q and 20q. Gains in a fewer number were seen for 1p (1 case), 1q (1), 7q (2), 9q (2), 11p (2), 12q (1), 14 (1), 15 (1), 17q (2), 18p (2), 18q (1), 20p (1), 21 (2), Xp (2) and Xq (2). Losses were less frequent than gains and observed for 1p (2 cases), 1q (1), 2p (1), 2q (2), 3p (2), 3q (1), 4q (2), 6q (1), 9p (2), 9q (1), 18p (1), 18q (1) and Y (2). Examples of analysis of tumour sections and cell lines performed by fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) confirmed the gains and losses found by CGH and detected additional signals for 8q21 in tumour cells in a sample with no gains or losses normally in CGH. The results suggest that aberrations of 5p, 8p and 8q, which are rarely found in differentiated thyroid carcinoma, may play an important role in the development of ATC. Therefore, these chromosomes could harbour gene loci potentially involved in the aggressiveness of neoplastic tumours, as shown in tumours such as in this study for ATC.
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