Clinical Oncology

British Journal of Cancer (1998) 78, 1356–1360. doi:10.1038/bjc.1998.684
Published November 1998

Absence of somatic alterations of the EB1 gene adenomatous polyposis coli-associated protein in human sporadic colorectal cancers

P Jaïs1, J-C Sabourin, J Bombled, P Rougier, P Lasser, P Duvillard, J Bénard and B Bressac-de Paillerets

1Unité des Marqueurs Génétiques des Cancers, Institut Gustave Roussy, Villejuif, France



The human EB1 gene product was recently found, by a yeast two-hybrid screening, to be associated with the carboxy terminus of the APC (adenomatous polyposis coli) protein, the product of a tumour-suppressor gene thought to act as a gatekeeper in colorectal carcinogenesis. Because virtually all of the APC mutations result in the synthesis of carboxy-terminal truncated proteins, mutant APC proteins are expected to lose their ability to interact with EB1 gene product. Thus, the interaction between APC and EB1 proteins may be important for the tumour-suppressor activity of APC protein, and raises the hypothesis that EB1 is also involved in sporadic colorectal tumorigenesis. To investigate this hypothesis, somatic mutations in the entire coding sequence of EB1 cDNA were searched by reverse transcriptase single-strand conformational polymorphism (SSCP) analysis in 21 sporadic colorectal cancers and seven adenomas. None of these tumours contained somatic mutation, whereas a silent cDNA variant was identified in 14% of alleles. Furthermore, to investigate whether EB1 locus was included within a region subjected to losses of heterozygosity, four polymorphism markers surrounding EB1 locus were surveyed. Only one out of 28 colorectal tumours contained a loss of heterozygosity at the D20S107 marker. In conclusion, the present findings strongly suggest that EB1 gene is not involved in somatic colorectal carcinogenesis.