Proto-oncogene restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLPs) were investigated in a group of 23 patients with squamous cell carcinomas of the larynx. The frequency of the rare 5 kb c-mos allele was significantly higher than that observed in control groups of patients with colorectal neoplasms or lymphoproliferative disorders. In addition, the 2 patients heterozygous at the c-mos locus (TC-8 and TC-10) were the only 2 of our series to develop multiple malignancies. Also, the 10 kb L-myc allele was remarkably more represented in patients with laryngeal carcinoma when compared to controls. These findings suggest that c-mos and L-myc RFLPs might be helpful in identifying those individuals who are at a higher risk of developing laryngeal carcinomas. Single allele amplification of L-myc, c-myb and c-mos proto-oncogenes, with no concomitant mRNA hyperexpression, were observed in 3 cases. The results obtained seem to rule out a direct pathogenetic role of these proto-oncogenes and suggest that the amplification of other closely linked genes, located on chromosomes 1, 6 and 8, respectively, may be causally associated with the development of these tumors. No allelic deletions at the c-myb locus were observed, whereas a loss of a c-Ha-ras-1 allele was demonstrated in one of the 11 heterozygous patients. Thus, the analysis of polymorphic proto-oncogenes in laryngeal carcinomas allowed us to identify a group of genetic abnormalities (chromosomes 1, 6 and 8 gene amplifications and c-Ha-ras-1 deletions) which may be involved in the development or progression of these tumors.
- Allelic deletions
- Gene amplifications
- Laryngeal carcinomas
- Restriction fragment length polymorphisms
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