Genomic copy number changes of DNA repair genes ERCC1 and ERCC2 in human gliomas

J Neurooncol. 1995 Oct;26(1):17-23. doi: 10.1007/BF01054765.


Abnormalities of the genomic region of chromosome 19q13.2-13.4 are a common occurrence in brain malignancies and contain a possible tumor suppressor gene involved in gliomas. Since abnormalities of DNA repair are associated with malignancy, we assessed DNA status of the nucleotide excision repair genes located in this area, viz. ERCC1 and ERCC2. Radiodensitometry was used to assess gene copy number in samples obtained from brain tumor specimens from 24 patients. Nine tumors were of lower grade histology (3 pilocytic astrocytomas, 2 gangliogliomas, 4 astrocytomas); 15 tumors were pathologically higher grade (4 anaplastic astrocytomas, 11 glioblastomas). Tumor samples were obtained prior to radiation or chemotherapy. Abnormalities of gene copy number of ERCC1 and ERCC2 were observed in 11/24 specimens (46%). Whereas increased and decreased copy numbers were observed for ERCC1, only decreases in copy number of ERCC2 were seen. Three tumors (all lower grade) showed concurrent allelic loss of ERCC1 and ERCC2. Abnormalities of copy number for these genes were not associated with response to subsequent therapy nor survival. However, allelic loss of ERCC2 was associated with younger age at diagnosis when compared to those specimens which did not show loss. There were no significant differences between lower grade and higher grade tumors with respect to these investigations. Abnormalities in copy number of ERCC1 and ERCC2 are common in glial tumors. Further study of this genomic region is necessary to define the importance of these observations in tumor pathophysiology and treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Astrocytoma / drug therapy
  • Astrocytoma / genetics
  • Brain Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Brain Neoplasms / genetics*
  • DNA Helicases*
  • DNA Probes
  • DNA Repair / genetics*
  • DNA, Neoplasm / analysis
  • DNA, Neoplasm / isolation & purification
  • DNA-Binding Proteins*
  • Densitometry
  • Endonucleases*
  • Female
  • Gene Dosage*
  • Genomic Library
  • Glioblastoma / drug therapy
  • Glioblastoma / genetics
  • Glioma / drug therapy
  • Glioma / genetics*
  • Humans
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Male
  • Proteins / genetics*
  • Survival Rate
  • Transcription Factors*
  • Xeroderma Pigmentosum Group D Protein


  • DNA Probes
  • DNA, Neoplasm
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Proteins
  • Transcription Factors
  • ERCC1 protein, human
  • Endonucleases
  • DNA Helicases
  • Xeroderma Pigmentosum Group D Protein
  • ERCC2 protein, human