Profiling of differential gene expression in Wilms tumor by cDNA expression array

Pediatr Nephrol. 2001 Dec;16(12):1113-21. doi: 10.1007/s004670100040.


In order to identify genes or pathways involved in Wilms tumor etiology, we used the Atlas Cancer cDNA expression array to compare the gene expression profiles of five tumors, one Wilms tumor cell line (SK-NEP1), and normal mature and fetal kidneys. Of 588 genes tested, 153 had a different expression pattern in tumors compared with mature kidney. Ninety-six genes were differentially expressed in tumors compared with both normal mature and fetal kidney, and 57 genes had expression profiles similar to that of fetal kidney, which may reflect the developmental stage of the tumor cells. Comparison of the expression patterns of tumors shows that only 13% of the differentially expressed genes are constantly up- or downregulated in the five tumors tested, and this provides molecular evidence of tumor heterogeneity. We then confirmed the differential expression by an independent method, using quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction for two of the differentially expressed genes, MMP-14 and cyclin D2. Analysis of expression levels in a panel of 40 tumors showed that 30% overexpressed MMP-14 and 80% overexpressed cyclin D2. Profiling of gene expression using cDNA arrays in a large tumor panel will ultimately lead to the molecular classification of tumors, the identification of prognosis markers, and the design of targeted therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cyclin D2
  • Cyclins / genetics
  • Fetus
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Humans
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases, Membrane-Associated
  • Metalloendopeptidases / genetics
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis*
  • Reference Values
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Wilms Tumor / genetics*


  • CCND2 protein, human
  • Cyclin D2
  • Cyclins
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases, Membrane-Associated
  • Metalloendopeptidases