Amplification of the epidermal-growth-factor-receptor gene correlates with different growth behaviour in human glioblastoma

Int J Cancer. 1994 Jan 2;56(1):72-7. doi: 10.1002/ijc.2910560114.


The objective of our study was to determine the frequency of EGF-receptor-gene rearrangement in relation to tumour-growth behaviour in an unselected group of glioma patients. We investigated 73 glial tumours with different grades of malignancy (17 low-grade gliomas, 14 anaplastic variants, and 42 GBM) by Southern analysis, reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) amplification of mRNA, and Western analysis. An amplification of the EGF-receptor gene was present in 19/42 GBM but in only 1 anaplastic astrocytoma. By RT-PCR, 4/19 GBM with gene amplification showed a specific amino-terminal aberrant splice mutation of 801 bp in addition to undeleted mRNA. By Western analysis, 27/42 GBM showed expression of the EGF-receptor protein. Protein levels, however, varied among individual tumours. Four GBM containing an aberrant splice mutation exhibited an immunoreactive protein of 130 kDa MW in addition to the normal EGF-receptor protein p170. All GBM patients underwent surgery followed by a standard course of radiotherapy. Neuroradiological follow-up in 31/42 GBM patients consisted of bimonthly MRI examinations. There was a statistically significant difference in the mean latency period until tumour regrowth of patients suffering from GBM with and without EGF-receptor-gene amplification (9 weeks vs. 32 weeks). Our data indicate more rapid tumour regrowth kinetics of GBM with amplified EGF receptor genes in vivo.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Blotting, Southern
  • Blotting, Western
  • Brain Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Brain Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Child
  • ErbB Receptors / genetics*
  • Female
  • Gene Amplification*
  • Gene Rearrangement
  • Glioblastoma / genetics*
  • Glioblastoma / physiopathology
  • Glioma / genetics
  • Glioma / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • ErbB Receptors