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  • Author or Editor: Masato Kochi x
  • By Author: Hirano, Hirofumi x
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Osamu Miyanohara, Hideo Takeshima, Masatomo Kaji, Hirofumi Hirano, Yutaka Sawamura, Masato Kochi and Jun-Ichi Kuratsu

Object. Overexpression of the protooncogene c-kit has been suggested in a gonadal germ cell tumor (GCT). Recently, the soluble isoform of c-kit (s-kit) has been expressed in a variety of cell types. The goal of this study was to investigate the expression of c-kit and the clinical significance of s-kit in patients with GCTs.

Methods. The authors first conducted an immunohistochemical investigation of the expression of the c-kit protein in 27 surgical specimens. In all 18 specimens that contained germinomas, c-kit was diffusely expressed on the cell surface of the germinoma cells, but was not found on lymphocytes or interstitial cells. In seven of eight immature teratomas, only some mature components, such as cartilage and glands, were immunoreactive for c-kit. Syncytiotrophoblastic giant cells (STGCs) demonstrated negative findings as well, suggesting that primarily germinoma cells express c-kit. Next, 47 cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples collected from 32 patients with GCTs (15 samples from patients with pure germinomas, 16 from patients with STGC germinomas, 14 from patients with teratomas, and two from a patient with a choriocarcinoma) were analyzed using a sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The level of s-kit was significantly higher in CSF collected from patients with germinomas and STGC germinomas than in CSF collected from patients with teratomas or non—germ cell brain tumors, or in CSF collected from controls. The concentration of s-kit in CSF was correlated with the patient's clinical course; it was significantly higher in pretreatment samples obtained before and in samples obtained at the time of tumor recurrence than in samples collected from patients in whom the tumor was in remission. The level of s-kit was remarkably high in CSF collected from patients with subarachnoid tumor dissemination.

Conclusions. These results indicate that the concentration of s-kit in CSF may be a useful clinical marker for germinomas, especially for detecting recurrence or subarachnoid dissemination of these lesions.

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Kenji Tada, Shoji Shiraishi, Takanori Kamiryo, Hideo Nakamura, Hirofumi Hirano, Jun-Ichi Kuratsu, Masato Kochi, Hideyuki Saya and Yukitaka Ushio

Object. The most frequent genetic abnormality in human malignant gliomas is loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on chromosome 10. Candidate genes on chromosome 10 that are associated with the prognosis of patients with anaplastic astrocytoma (AA) and glioblastoma (GBM) were evaluated.

Methods. The authors used 12 fluorescent microsatellite markers on both arms of chromosome 10 to study LOH in 108 primary astrocytic tumors. The LOH on chromosome 10 was observed in 11 (32%) of 34 AAs and 34 (56%) of 61 GBMs. No LOH was detected in 13 low-grade gliomas. Loss of heterozygosity was not detected in any AA in the seven patients younger than 35 years, but it was discovered in 41% of the patients older than 35 years. The prognostic significance of LOH at each locus was evaluated in 89 patients older than 15 years; 33 (37%) had supratentorial AAs and 56 (63%) had supratentorial GBMs. The Cox proportional hazards model, adjusted for patient age at surgery, the preoperative Karnofsky Performance Scale score, and the extent of surgical resection revealed that LOH on marker D10S209 near the FGFR2 and DMBT1 genes was significantly associated with shorter survival in patients with AA. The LOH on markers D10S215 and D10S541, which contain the PTEN/MMAC1 gene between them, was significantly associated with shorter survival in patients with GBM.

Conclusions. In the present study it is found that LOH on chromosome 10 is an age-dependent event for patients with AAs and that LOH on marker D10S209 near the FGFR2 and DMBT1 loci is a significantly unfavorable prognostic factor. It is also reported that LOH on the PTEN/MMAC1 gene is a significantly unfavorable prognostic factor in patients with GBM.