Astrocytomas and glioblastomas are the most frequent primary brain tumors in adults. Mutations and altered expression of multiple genes have been found to contribute to the genesis of these tumors. However, many factors in the genesis of astrocytic gliomas are not resolved yet. The frequent losses on several chromosomes indicate the role of still unidentified tumor suppressor genes. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on 22q has been described in up to 30% of astrocytic tumors and may be associated with progression to anaplasia. In a first step, information from the nearly finished physical sequence of chromosome 22 were used to map LOH data from 22q deletion studies on different tumor entities to identify potential tumor suppressor gene candidate regions. Next, a series of 153 astrocytic gliomas was examined with 11 polymorphic markers spanning these regions. Forty-nine (32%) astrocytic gliomas exhibited LOH on 22q, 17 (35%) of which lost heterozygosity for all markers and 32 (65%) of which carried interstitial or partial deletions. Two regions were identified on the physical DNA sequence. The centromeric region spans 3 Mb and the telomeric region 2.7 Mb. The reduced size of these regions now allows direct analysis of all genes included. We already performed mutation analysis on 4 candidate genes from these regions (MYO18B, DJ1042K10.2, MKL1 and EP300), but did not find any mutations in astrocytic tumors.
Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.