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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Analysis of ras gene mutations and methylation state in human leukemias.

We have screened a large series of primary human leukemias for activating point mutations at codons 12, 13 and 61 of the N-ras and K-ras proto-oncogenes and at codons 12 and 61 of the H-ras proto-oncogene by using panels of oligonucleotide probes in conjunction with polymerase chain reaction gene amplification. 13 of 64 (20%) acute lymphoblastic leukemia cases had ras gene mutations mostly involving N-ras codon 12/13, G-A (gly-asp) transitions. Consistent with previous studies, a comparable pattern and frequency of ras mutation was found amongst 45 cases of acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplasia. By contrast, of 30 cases of mature B cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia, only one in terminal prolymphocytoid transformation harboured an activated ras gene. These patterns of mutation did not correlate with ras gene methylation state, a finding not obviously compatible with differential gene accessibility being an important determinant of ras gene mutation patterns in leukemogenesis. Our data suggest that activated ras is more important in tumourigenesis of immature than mature lymphocyte progenitors whilst similar mechanisms associated with aetiology and/or target cell susceptibility probably underlie the similar patterns of ras gene mutations seen in acute leukemias of both myeloid and lymphoid cell lineages.[1]


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