Elevated protein kinase CK2 activity in chromatin of head and neck tumors: association with malignant transformation

Cancer Lett. 1996 Mar 19;101(1):31-5. doi: 10.1016/0304-3835(96)04110-9.


We hypothesized that malignant transformation of normal mucosa of the upper aerodigestive tract to squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN) might be associated with altered CK2 activity in the chromatin compartment of these tumors. We measured CK2 activity in the cytosol and chromatin of 7 surgical specimens of SCCHN, and 5 specimens of normal oropharyngeal mucosa from non-smokers/non-drinkers. CK2 activity in SCCHN tumors was significantly elevated in both the nuclear chromatin (P < 0.0005) and cytosolic (P <0.04) compartments relative to normal mucosa. These data suggest that activation of dysregulation of the chromatin-associated CK2 signal may play a role in the pathobiology od SCCHN.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / enzymology*
  • Casein Kinase II
  • Cell Nucleus / enzymology
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / metabolism*
  • Chromatin / enzymology*
  • Cytosol / enzymology
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mouth Mucosa / enzymology
  • Oligopeptides / chemistry
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Reference Values


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Chromatin
  • Oligopeptides
  • Casein Kinase II
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases