Frequent loss of imprinting of the H19 and IGF-II genes in ovarian tumors

Am J Med Genet. 1998 Dec 4;80(4):391-5. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1096-8628(19981204)80:4<391::aid-ajmg16>;2-h.


Several human imprinted genes have been identified and are implicated in genetic diseases and tumorigenesis. We studied alterations of two imprinted genes, the paternally imprinted H19 and maternally imprinted IGF2, in 15 ovarian tumors with various cell types. To know allele-specific expression of the two genes, we analyzed restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLPs) at the 3'-untranslated region (UTR) in their cDNA, compared with those in the respective genomic DNA. As a result, biallelic H19 and IGF2 expression was observed in 8 (62%) of 13 informative (heterozygous) ovarian cancers and in 6 of 11 informative cases, respectively. H19 loss of imprinting (LOI) was most frequently observed in malignant serous cystadenocarcinoma (in four of six cases), whereas IGF2 LOI was not common in malignant epithelial cancers because three of six such LOI events occurred in benign mucinous cystadenomas and non-cancerous endometriotic cyst. Our data suggest that the alteration of H19 and IGF2 imprinting plays differential roles in tumorigenesis and progression of ovarian tumors, depending on the tissue type as well as the developmental stage. Our data may argue against tumor suppressor activity of H19 in ovarian cancers.

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • DNA, Neoplasm / analysis
  • DNA, Neoplasm / genetics
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Genes, Tumor Suppressor / genetics
  • Genomic Imprinting*
  • Humans
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor II / genetics*
  • Muscle Proteins / genetics*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length
  • RNA, Long Noncoding
  • RNA, Untranslated*


  • DNA, Neoplasm
  • H19 long non-coding RNA
  • Muscle Proteins
  • RNA, Long Noncoding
  • RNA, Untranslated
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor II