Somatic mutations in the E-cadherin (CDH1) gene have frequently been reported in cases with diffuse gastric and lobular breast cancers. Recently, germline mutations have been identified in families with diffuse gastric cancers. In families with hereditary prostate cancer (HPC), a significant association of prostate cancer, gastric and/or breast cancer has been observed in epidemiological studies. The aim of this study was to investigate if germline mutations in CDH1 could explain the risk for cancer in HPC families with an excess of gastric and breast cancer. In total, 17 members from 13 HPC families and 3 members from 3 families with hereditary gastric cancer (HGC) were screened for germline CDH1 sequence alterations using PCR/Denaturing HPLC for initial screening of nucleotide variants followed by confirmatory direct sequencing analysis. The frequency of identified novel germline mutations were tested for in 136 cases with hereditary prostate cancer and 215 cases of sporadic prostate cancer with 422 age matched controls in an allelic discrimination assay. In total, 8 sequence variants were detected in 20 samples tested. In the HPC families, we found 2 missense mutations, A592T in exon 12 and a novel D777N in exon 15 and a mutation in intron 5, 687+92T>A. A previously known polymorphism in exon 13 and 3 sequence variations in introns and untranslated regions were also found, of which the significance is unknown. In HGC-023 with early onset diffuse gastric cancer a truncating mutation, R335X, was identified in exon 7. None of the missense mutations or 687+92T>A were found in the extended HPC material or in the sporadic prostate cancer cases with age-matched controls in the allelic discrimination assay. We found several germline mutations of unknown clinical significance in the CDH1 gene that probably do not explain the association of prostate, gastric and/or breast cancers in the HPC-families. Two missense mutations and a mutation in intron 5 were identified that do not influence the risk of hereditary or sporadic prostate cancer in general and are considered to be pedigree specific. In a family with hereditary gastric cancer of the diffuse type, we identified the first truncating germline mutation in a Scandinavian family.
Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.