We have screened for mutations in exons 5-8 of the p53 gene in a series consisting of 189 patients with urinary bladder neoplasms. 82 (44%) neoplasms were lowly malignant (Ta, G1-G2a) and 106 (56%) were highly malignant (G2b-G4 or > or = T1). Only one mutation was in a lowly malignant urinary bladder neoplasm, in total we found p53 mutations in 26 (14%) of the 189 patients. 30% of the samples had loss of heterozygosity (LOH) for one or both of the p53 exogenic (CA)n repeat and the p53 intragenic (AAAAT)n repeat markers. 31 samples (21%) showed LOH but were not mutated, suggesting other mechanisms inactivating p53 than mutations. 4 mutations were found at codon 280 and 2 mutations were found at codon 285, 2 previously reported hot spots for urinary bladder cancer. The study indicate a boundary between G2a and G2b tumours concerning the occurrence of genetic events affecting p53 function; moderately differentiated (G2) urinary bladder neoplasms probably are genetically heterogeneous which supports the suggestion that they should not be grouped together but instead, for example, be categorized as either lowly or highly malignant.
Copyright 2001 Cancer Research Campaign.