Journal Article

Polyglycine expansions in eRF3/GSPT1 are associated with gastric cancer susceptibility

M. Brito, J. Malta-Vacas, B. Carmona, C. Aires, P. Costa, A.P. Martins, S. Ramos, A.R. Conde and C. Monteiro

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 26, issue 12, pages 2046-2049
Published in print December 2005 | ISSN: 0143-3334
Published online June 2005 | e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI:
Polyglycine expansions in eRF3/GSPT1 are associated with gastric cancer susceptibility

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  • Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics


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Gastric cancer remains a major cause of death in the developed countries, and a large percentage is still genetically unexplained. Because of their major role in cell survival, mutations in translation factors and altered expression of these genes have been associated with cancer development. Apart from its role in translation termination, the eukaryotic translation release factor 3 (eRF3) is involved in several critical cellular processes, such as cell cycle regulation, cytoskeleton organization and apoptosis. The aim of this study was to evaluate eRF3/GSPT1 gene as a potential genetic susceptibility associated locus for gastric cancer, analysing a stable GGC expansion in exon 1 encoding a polyglycine tract in the N-terminal domain of the protein. DNA was obtained from 139 patients with gastric cancer and from 100 individuals of a healthy control population. The GGC expansion was amplified by PCR and the number of repeats determined by genotyping in an automatic sequencer. There are five known alleles encoding from 8 to 12 glycines. The most common allele encodes 10 glycines. The 12-Gly allele was detected exclusively in the cancer patients (allelic frequency = 5%). Regardless of the genotype, patients with the 12-Gly allele had a 20-fold increased risk for gastric cancer. We also detected a single-base alteration in the gene (G274T) although no correlation with cancer development has been found. Thus, our results show that the GGC expansion may have a potential role in regulating eRF3/GSPT1 expression and/or changing the protein function that can lead to gastric cancer development.

Keywords: AR, androgen receptor; eIF, eukaryotic initiation factor; eRF3, eukaryotic translation release factor 3; PABP, poly-A binding protein

Journal Article.  2821 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

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