1|X-linked recessive hypoparathyroidism, due to parathyroid agenesis, has been mapped to a 906-kb region on Xq27 that contains 3 genes (ATP11C, U7snRNA, and SOX3), and analyses have not revealed mutations. We therefore characterized this region by combined analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms and sequence-tagged sites. This identified a 23- to 25-kb deletion, which did not contain genes. However, DNA fiber-FISH and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis revealed an approximately 340-kb insertion that replaced the deleted fragment. Use of flow-sorted X chromosome-specific libraries and DNA sequence analyses revealed that the telomeric and centromeric breakpoints on X were, respectively, approximately 67 kb downstream of SOX3 and within a repetitive sequence. Use of a monochromosomal somatic cell hybrid panel and metaphase-FISH mapping demonstrated that the insertion originated from 2p25 and contained a segment of the SNTG2 gene that lacked an open reading frame. However, the deletion-insertion [del(X)(q27.1) inv ins (X;2)(q27.1;p25.3)], which represents a novel abnormality causing hypoparathyroidism, could result in a position effect on SOX3 expression. Indeed, SOX3 expression was demonstrated, by in situ hybridization, in the developing parathyroid tissue of mouse embryos between 10.5 and 15.5 days post coitum. Thus, our results indicate a likely new role for SOX3 in the embryonic development of the parathyroid glands. 2|Human artificial chromosomes (HACs) provide a unique opportunity to study kinetochore formation and to develop a new generation of vectors with potential in gene therapy. An investigation into the structural and the functional relationship in centromeric tandem repeats in HACs requires the ability to manipulate repeat substructure efficiently. We describe here a new method to rapidly amplify human alphoid tandem repeats of a few hundred base pairs into long DNA arrays up to 120 kb. The method includes rolling-circle amplification (RCA) of repeats in vitro and assembly of the RCA products by in vivo recombination in yeast. The synthetic arrays are competent in HAC formation when transformed into human cells. As short multimers can be easily modified before amplification, this new technique can identify repeat monomer regions critical for kinetochore seeding. The method may have more general application in elucidating the role of other tandem repeats in chromosome organization and dynamics. 3|BACKGROUND: Overexpression of the epidermal growth factor type II receptor HER-2/neu has been associated with resistance to chemotherapy and poor survival in several human tumors. In the current study, the authors have determined the frequency and clinical significance of HER-2/neu gene amplification in uterine serous papillary endometrial carcinoma (USPC), a highly aggressive variant of endometrial carcinoma. METHODS: Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) assay was used to analyze gene amplification in paraffin blocks from 30 women harboring Stage IA-IV USPC treated at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (Little Rock, AR) from 1997 to 2004. Chromosome 17 polysomy status by FISH was also assessed in all specimens. USPC patient survival in relation to HER-2/neu gene amplification was analyzed using Kaplan-Meier curves in conjunction with the log-rank test. RESULTS: Amplification of the HER-2/neu gene by FISH was observed in 14 of the 30 (47%) cases. Heterogeneity was noted in 4 of 14 cases in the amplification of the HER-2/neu gene within the same tumor samples with pockets of amplified tumor cells amidst nonamplified tumor cells. Patients with USPC harboring tumors with HER-2/neu gene amplification had a significantly shorter survival time from diagnosis to disease-related death when compared with FISH-negative patients (P = 0.0008). African-American (AA) patients were found to have a poorer prognosis compared with Caucasian (C) women (P = 0.01) and to harbor USPC with significantly higher levels of HER-2/neu gene amplification (P = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: HER-2/neu gene amplification in USPC was found to be an important prognostic indicator for poor outcome that occurs more frequently in AA when compared with C patients. Determination of HER-2/neu gene amplification may guide clinical management of patients with USPC and may have important implications for the implementation of novel treatment strategies. 4|Genetic variation of the Y chromosome in five Chibchan tribes (Bribri, Cabecar, Guaymi, Huetar, and Teribe) of Costa Rica and Panama was analyzed using six microsatellite loci (DYS19, DYS389A, DYS389B, DYS390, DYS391, and DYS393), the Y-chromosome-specific alphoid system (alphah), the Y-chromosome Alu polymorphism (YAP), and a specific pre-Columbian transition (C-->T) (M3 marker) in the DYS 199 locus that defines the Q-M3 haplogroup. Thirty-nine haplotypes were found, resulting in a haplotype diversity of 0.937. The Huetar were the most diverse tribe, probably because of their high levels of interethnic admixture. A candidate founder Y-chromosome haplotype was identified (15.1% of Chibchan chromosomes), with the following constitution: YAP-, DYS199*T, alphah-II, DYS19*13, DYS389A*17, DYS389B*10, DYS390*24, DYS391*10, and DYS393*13. This haplotype is the same as the one described previously as one of the most frequent founder paternal lineages in native American populations. Analysis of molecular variance indicated that the between-population variation was smaller than the within-population variation, and the comparison with mtDNA restriction data showed no evidence of differential structuring between maternally and paternally inherited genes in the Chibchan populations. The mismatch-distribution approach indicated estimated coalescence times of the Y chromosomes of the Q-M3 haplogroup of 3,113 and 13,243 years before present; for the mtDNA-restriction haplotypes the estimated coalescence time was between 7,452 and 9,834 years before present. These results are compatible with the suggested time for the origin of the Chibchan group based on archeological, linguistic, and genetic evidence. 5|Hereditary gingival fibromatosis (HGF) is a rare, benign disorder characterized by slowly progressive fibrous overgrowth of the gingiva. To date, two loci have been mapped in familial cases with autosomal dominant non-syndromic HGF: GINGF (MIM 135300) on chromosome 2p21-p22 and GINGF2 (MIM 605544) on chromosome 5q13-q22. Of the two loci, only SOS1 (son of sevenless one, MIM 182530) gene underlying GINGF locus has been identified. Ascertainment of a large Chinese family has allowed the mapping of a novel locus to 2p22.3-p23.3, GINGF3. Haplotype construction and analysis localized the new locus to an 11.4-cM interval between markers D2S2221 (telomeric) and D2S1788 (centromeric). The maximum two-point limit of detection (LOD) score of 3.45 (theta=0) and multipoint LOD score of 5.00 for marker D2S390 strongly supported linkage to this region. Thus, this genetic interval is distal to and does not overlap with the previously described locus, GINGF, on 2p21-p22. 6|Autoimmune spondylitis was induced in BALB/c mice and their MHC-matched (BALB/c x DBA/2)F1 and F2 hybrids by systemic immunization with cartilage/intervertebral disk proteoglycan (PG). As in human ankylosing spondylitis, the MHC was the major permissive genetic locus in murine PG-induced spondylitis (PGIS). Two major non-MHC chromosome loci with highly significant linkage were found on chromosomes 2 (Pgis2) and 18 (Pgis1) accounting for 40% of the entire F2 trait variance. The dominant spondylitis-susceptibility allele for Pgis2 locus is derived from the BALB/c strain, whereas the Pgis1 recessive allele was present in the disease-resistant DBA/2 strain. The Pgis1 locus significantly affected the disease-controlling Pgis2 locus, inducing as high incidence of spondylitis in F2 hybrids as was found in the spondylitis-susceptible parent BALB/c strain. Additional disease-controlling loci with suggestive linkage were mapped to the chromosomes 12, 15, and 19. Severity of spondylitis in F2 mice positively correlated with serum levels of amyloid A, IL-6, and Pg-specific Abs, and showed negative correlation with Ag-induced T cell proliferation, IFN-gamma, IL-4, and TNF-alpha production. A major locus controlling serum IL-6 was found on chromosome 14 near osteoclast differentiation factor Tnfsf11. Locus on chromosome 11 near the Stat3 and Stat5 genes controlled serum level of the Ig IgG2a isotype. The two major genetic loci Pgis1 and Pgis2 of murine spondylitis were homologous to chromosome regions in human genome, which control ankylosing spondylitis in human patients. Thus, this animal model of experimentally induced spondylitis might facilitate the identification of spondylitis-susceptibility genes in humans. 7|OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the clinical and serological heterogeneity in patients with anticentromere antibodies (ACA). METHODS: One hundred twenty patients with ACA were analyzed retrospectively. ACA were detected initially on the basis of indirect immunofluorescence on HEp-2 cells, and then antibodies to CENP-B were measured by ELISA. Antibodies to other nuclear antigens were also detected by double immunodiffusion and/or ELISA. RESULTS: Eighty-four patients (70.0%) had systemic sclerosis (SSc; scleroderma) and 36 patients (30.0%) had other rheumatic diseases or miscellaneous disorders. Among patients with SSc, 35 patients (41.7%) had SSc in overlap mostly with Sjögren's syndrome (SS), in part with rheumatoid arthritis and/or primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC). Five of 36 patients (13.9%) without SSc also had overlap syndrome of more than 2 rheumatic diseases or PBC. All CREST features (calcinosis, Raynaud's, esophageal dysmotility, sclerodactyly, telangiectasias) were found significantly more in SSc than in other diseases. A combination of RST was the most frequently seen, followed by CREST and CRST in the SSc group. In contrast, 22 of 36 patients (61.1%) without SSc had no CREST features, and the rest had only Raynaud's phenomenon and/or telangiectasia. Twenty-five of 75 patients (33.3%) with SSc and 6 of 25 patients (24.0%) with other diseases had a slight elevation of creatine phosphokinase concentration with no apparent myositis signs and/or skin lesions, suggesting a new additional sign of patients with ACA. Seventy-two patients (60.0%) had ACA alone and 48 patients (40%) had ACA mixed with other disease marker antinuclear antibodies (ANA). ACA alone occurred more frequently in patients with SSc and in the non-overlap group, whereas patients with ACA mixed with other ANA were more frequently found in the other disease and the overlap syndrome groups. Anti-CENP-B ELISA levels of the SSc group were significantly higher than those of other disease groups in all patients, in patients with ACA alone, and in patients having ACA together with other ANA. The most frequently concurrent ANA were anti-SSA/Ro antibodies; and the other ANA, including anti-SSB/La, RNP, topoisomerase-I, Jo-1, Ku, and dsDNA antibodies, were also positive alone or combined with more than 2 ANA in patients with ACA. Five patients with CREST syndrome having ACA and anti-RNP antibodies had clinical manifestations compatible with mixed connective tissue disease. SS was found in 37.0% of patients who had higher anti-CENP-B ELISA levels and higher coincidence of anti-SSA/Ro antibodies than the patients without SS. CONCLUSION: ACA were positive mostly in patients with SSc with CREST features and partly in other rheumatic disorders. The high levels of ACA may be necessary for the development of CREST features, and frequent concurrence of other disease marker ANA may contribute to the development of heterogeneous clinical characteristics, including overlap syndrome, in patients with ACA. 8|SFRP1, SFRP2, SFRP3, SFRP4, SFRP5, WIF1, DKK1, DKK2, DKK3, DKK4 are secreted-type WNT signaling modulators. SFRP1 tumor suppressor gene at human chromosome 8p11.21 is inactivated in colorectal cancer and other tumors by deletion and by epigenetic CpG hypermethylation. Here, we identified and characterized the rat Sfrp1 gene by using bioinformatics. Rat Sfrp1 gene, consisting of three exons, was located within AC112899.4 genome sequence. Complete coding sequence of rat Sfrp1 was determined by assembling AC112899.4 genome sequence, CK838748 EST, and BF417482 EST. Rat Sfrp1 (314 aa) consisted of a signal peptide (codon 1-31), Frizzled domain with ten conserved Cys residues (codon 49-168), and Netrin (NTR) domain with six conserved Cys residues (codon 186-314). Rat Sfrp1 showed 98.7%, 95.2%, 94.3%, 82.5% and 58.3% total-amino-acid identity with mouse Sfrp1, human SFRP1, cow Sfrp1, chicken sfrp1 and zebrafish sfrp1, respectively. SFRP1 mRNA was expressed in embryonic stem (ES) cells, neuroblastoma, liver adeno-carcinoma, and skin squamous cell carcinoma. Match program revealed that AP1, COMP1, and double ETS1-binding sites were conserved between human SFRP1 and rat Sfrp1 promoters. This is the first report on comparative integromics analyses on Sfrp1 orthologs. 9|BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Recent Icelandic studies have demonstrated linkage for common forms of stroke to chromosome 5q12 and association between phosphodiesterase4D (PDE4D) and ischemic stroke. Using a candidate region approach, we wanted to test the validity of these findings in a different population from northern Sweden. METHODS: A total of 56 families with 117 affected individuals were included in the linkage study. Genotyping was performed with polymorphic microsatellite markers with an average distance of 4.5 cM on chromosome 5. In the association study, 275 cases of first-ever stroke were included together with 550 matched community controls. Polymorphisms were tested individually for association of PDE4D to stroke. RESULTS: Maximum allele-sharing lod score in favor of linkage was observed at marker locus D5S424 (lod score=2.06; P=0.0010). Conditional logistic regression calculations revealed no significant association of ischemic stroke to the defined at-risk allele in PDE4D (odds ratio, 1.1; 95% confidence interval, 0.84 to 1.45). A protective effect may though be implied for 2 of the polymorphisms analyzed in PDE4D. CONCLUSIONS: Using a candidate region approach in a set of stroke families from northern Sweden, we have replicated linkage of stroke susceptibility to the PDE4D gene region on chromosome 5q. Association studies in an independent nested case-control sample from the same geographically located population suggested that different alleles confer susceptibility/protection to stroke in the Icelandic and the northern Swedish populations. 10|Kindler syndrome is a rare hereditary disorder characterized by acral blister formation in infancy and childhood, progressive poikiloderma, cutaneous atrophy and increased photosensitivity. Since it was first described in 1954, less than 100 cases have been reported worldwide. Recently it has been reported that Kindler syndrome is the first genodermatosis caused by a defect in the actin-extracellular matrix linkage, and the gene was mapped to chromosome 20p12.3. The clinical features of the syndrome have been annotated by different authors but the definite of criteria to confirm the diagnosis have not yet been generally accepted. We report a case of Kindler syndrome that presents a full spectrum of clinical manifestations, and we propose a set of clinical criteria for diagnosis. 11|This paper describes results of a population study of two X-linked STR microsatellite markers: DXS7108 and DXS1196. 298 samples of DNA of unrelated persons (male and female) from the Northern part of Poland were analyzed. DNA was isolated using a non-enzymatic method. After amplification PCR products were separated by means of capillary electrophoresis using the ABI PRISM 310 Genetic Analyzer. The most common alleles of each locus were sequenced and used as a control ladder to type unknown samples. Testing for Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium (HWE) showed no significant deviation for these two loci. Statistical parameters (PD, HET, MEC) showed that examined systems are useful in forensic medicine. 12|The biology of CML (chronic myeloid leukaemia) has been extensively investigated as the disease is a paradigm of neoplasms induced when a translocation results in expression of a novel fusion protein, in this instance p210(BCR-ABL). Although CML manifests itself principally as unregulated expansion of the myeloid lineage, the lesion is present in the stem cell population and it has long been assumed that disregulated stem cell kinetics must underlie the basic pathology of the disease. In this review, we present evidence that, in normal haemopoiesis, less primitive precursor cells retain considerable flexibility in their capacity to undergo self-renewal, allowing them to maintain lineage-specific homoeostasis without inflicting proliferative stress upon the stem cell population. This mechanism is dysregulated in CML and we have developed a self-renewal assay for CFU-GM (colony-forming unit-granulocyte/macrophage) which demonstrates that, in CML, the PI (proliferative index) of the myeloid progenitor cell population is increased. The ability to measure the PI as an endpoint of p210(BCR-ABL) expression gives considerable versatility to the in vitro investigation of putative therapeutic regimes in CML. 13|BACKGROUND: Psoriasis is a heritable disease and genome-wide scans have implicated several loci of susceptibility. The gene for MASP-2, a protease involved in complement activation, is located within one of these loci on chromosome 1p. OBJECTIVES: To assess whether partial or total MASP-2 deficiency is a risk factor for developing psoriasis. METHODS: We screened a cohort of patients affected by plaque psoriasis and their parents by restriction fragment length polymorphism analyses. RESULTS: We detected a single nucleotide polymorphism that leads to an amino acid exchange, which results in dissociation of MASP-2 from a carbohydrate recognition complex. CONCLUSIONS: We show that this mutant allele is not associated with psoriasis. There was no favoured transmission from parents to affected offspring. The calculated allele frequency in this psoriasis group (Scottish and English) was 0.0326, and in the unaffected group 0.0379. 14|Aurora B, which is important for cell division control, is highly expressed in large number of cancer cell lines. Hesperadin, a prototype of a pharmacological agent, is a small molecule inhibitor of catalytic activity of Aurora B. In present work we investigate effect of Hesperadin on breast--MCF7 and prostate adenocarcinoma--PC3, cancer cell lines. After Hesperadin treatment we observe stop of cell proliferation due to appearance of multiple mitotic defects caused by Aurora B activity reduction and elimination of checkpoint proteins--such as hBUBR1 and CENP-E--from kinetochores of mitotic chromosomes. 15|The cellular targets of primary mutations and malignant transformation remain elusive in most cancers. Here, we show that clinically and genetically different subtypes of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) originate and transform at distinct stages of hematopoietic development. Primary ETV6-RUNX1 (also known as TEL-AML1) fusions and subsequent leukemic transformations were targeted to committed B-cell progenitors. Major breakpoint BCR-ABL1 fusions (encoding P210 BCR-ABL1) originated in hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), whereas minor BCR-ABL1 fusions (encoding P190 BCR-ABL1) had a B-cell progenitor origin, suggesting that P190 and P210 BCR-ABL1 ALLs represent largely distinct tumor biological and clinical entities. The transformed leukemia-initiating stem cells in both P190 and P210 BCR-ABL1 ALLs had, as in ETV6-RUNX1 ALLs, a committed B progenitor phenotype. In all patients, normal and leukemic repopulating stem cells could successfully be separated prospectively, and notably, the size of the normal HSC compartment in ETV6-RUNX1 and P190 BCR-ABL1 ALLs was found to be unaffected by the expansive leukemic stem cell population. 16|Transcriptional regulatory elements play essential roles in gene expression during animal development and cellular response to environmental signals, but our knowledge of these regions in the human genome is limited despite the availability of the complete genome sequence. Promoters mark the start of every transcript and are an important class of regulatory elements. A large, complex protein structure known as the pre-initiation complex (PIC) is assembled on all active promoters, and the presence of these proteins distinguishes promoters from other sequences in the genome. Using components of the PIC as tags, we isolated promoters directly from human cells as protein-DNA complexes and identified the resulting DNA sequences using genomic tiling microarrays. Our experiments in four human cell lines uncovered 252 PIC-binding sites in 44 semirandomly selected human genomic regions comprising 1% (30 megabase pairs) of the human genome. Nearly 72% of the identified fragments overlap or immediately flank 5' ends of known cDNA sequences, while the remainder is found in other genomic regions that likely harbor putative promoters of unannotated transcripts. Indeed, molecular analysis of the RNA isolated from one cell line uncovered transcripts initiated from over half of the putative promoter fragments, and transient transfection assays revealed promoter activity for a significant proportion of fragments when they were fused to a luciferase reporter gene. These results demonstrate the specificity of a genome-wide analysis method for mapping transcriptional regulatory elements and also indicate that a small, yet significant number of human genes remains to be discovered. 17|The rapid increase in adenocarcinoma of the lung and mortality amongst women strongly suggests that gender differences exist in sensitivity to certain tobacco carcinogens. In the current study, we performed the mutagen-sensitivity assay, with the tobacco-specific nitrosamine 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK), to test the hypothesis that women are more sensitive to the genotoxic effects of NNK than men. Chromosome aberration (CA) frequencies in peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) from 99 patients were evaluated before and after in vitro exposure to NNK. Because the Thr241Met polymorphism in the DNA-repair gene XRCC3 is associated with increased risk of tobacco-related cancers, especially among women, we also tested the hypothesis that individuals who inherit the homozygous variant 241Met allele are more sensitive to the genotoxic effects of NNK. CA frequency was significantly higher 1 hr after NNK treatment in women, compared with men (P = 0.02). When smoking and gender were considered together, a significant interaction was observed. PBLs from female smokers had significantly higher frequencies of NNK-induced CA, compared with female nonsmokers 1 hr after treatment (P = 0.02). We observed no overall effect of the Thr241Met polymorphism on NNK-induced CA in men, women, smokers, or nonsmokers. Overall, our data indicate that women are more sensitive to the genotoxic effects of NNK than men. Because in past years smoking among women has increased, and in view of the close correlation between NNK exposure and adenocarcinoma of the lung, our data provide a plausible explanation for the recent increase in the incidence of this cancer among women. 18|A diagnostic triad characterizes Brugada syndrome. It consists of a right bundle branch block, ST-segment elevation in leads V1-V3 and sudden cardiac death (SCD). Approximately 50% of patients with Brugada syndrome noted to have familial occurrence, this suggests a genetic component of the disease. Mutations in gene SCN5A, an encoder for human cardiac sodium channel on chromosome 3p21, causes Brugada syndrome. Before considering the diagnosis of Brugada syndrome, exclude precordial ST-segment elevation secondary to acute coronary syndrome, electrolyte imbalance, myocarditis, drug over dosage (cocaine, tricyclic antidepressants), and arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy/dysplasia. Intravenous administration of ajmaline, flecainide, and procainamide may exaggerate the ST-segment elevation, or unmask it when it is initially absent in patients with suspected Brugada syndrome. Programmed electrical stimulation (PES) may help in risk stratification, and in some cases, establish the diagnosis. However, the accuracy of PES in predicting outcome is debatable, especially in patients showing an asymptomatic Brugada ECG, and reporting no family history of SCD. Treatment with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) is the only established effective therapy for the disease. With ICD therapy, the mortality rate at a 10 year follow-up was 0%. Supporting data for long-term pharmacological therapy with quinidine, or isoproterenol for prevention of SCD, in these patients, is uncomplete. Future advances in understanding the molecular mechanisms of Brugada syndrome may provide answers to many of the controversial issues in the management of this disease. 19|Focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) is a kidney disorder of unknown etiology, and up to 20% of patients on dialysis have been diagnosed with it. Here we show that a large family with hereditary FSGS carries a missense mutation in the TRPC6 gene on chromosome 11q, encoding the ion-channel protein transient receptor potential cation channel 6 (TRPC6). The proline-to-glutamine substitution at position 112, which occurs in a highly conserved region of the protein, enhances TRPC6-mediated calcium signals in response to agonists such as angiotensin II and appears to alter the intracellular distribution of TRPC6 protein. Previous work has emphasized the importance of cytoskeletal and structural proteins in proteinuric kidney diseases. Our findings suggest an alternative mechanism for the pathogenesis of glomerular disease. 20|Glaucoma is the second largest blinding disorder, after cataract, affecting about 67 million people worldwide. In India about 1.5 million people are blind due to glaucoma. Primary open angle glaucoma is the major sub-type of glaucoma affecting all ages and is genetically complex. Myocilin and optineurin are two different genes that have been implicated for primary open angle glaucoma. This review is focused on the studies being conducted in India on primary open angle glaucoma to identify the molecular defects and new directions undertaken using bioinformatic approaches towards a better understanding of the disease. 21|Pseudogenes, in the case of protein-coding genes, are gene copies that have lost the ability to code for a protein; they are typically identified through annotation of disabled, decayed or incomplete protein-coding sequences. Processed pseudogenes (PPsigs) are made through mRNA retrotransposition. There is overwhelming genomic evidence for thousands of human PPsigs and also dozens of human processed genes that comprise complete retrotransposed copies of other genes. Here, we survey for an intermediate entity, the transcribed processed pseudogene (TPPsig), which is disabled but nonetheless transcribed. TPPsigs may affect expression of paralogous genes, as observed in the case of the mouse makorin1-p1 TPPsig. To elucidate their role, we identified human TPPsigs by mapping expressed sequences onto PPsigs and, reciprocally, extracting TPPsigs from known mRNAs. We consider only those PPsigs that are homologous to either non-mammalian eukaryotic proteins or protein domains of known structure, and require detection of identical coding-sequence disablements in both the expressed and genomic sequences. Oligonucleotide microarray data provide further expression verification. Overall, we find 166-233 TPPsigs ( approximately 4-6% of PPsigs). Proteins/transcripts with the highest numbers of homologous TPPsigs generally have many homologous PPsigs and are abundantly expressed. TPPsigs are significantly over-represented near both the 5' and 3' ends of genes; this suggests that TPPsigs can be formed through gene-promoter co-option, or intrusion into untranslated regions. However, roughly half of the TPPsigs are located away from genes in the intergenic DNA and thus may be co-opting cryptic promoters of undesignated origin. Furthermore, TPPsigs are unlike other PPsigs and processed genes in the following ways: (i) they do not show a significant tendency to either deposit on or originate from the X chromosome; (ii) only 5% of human TPPsigs have potential orthologs in mouse. This latter finding indicates that the vast majority of TPPsigs is lineage specific. This is likely linked to well-documented extensive lineage-specific SINE/LINE activity. The list of TPPsigs is available at: http://www.biology.mcgill.ca/faculty/harrison/tppg/bppg.tov (or) http:pseudogene.org. 22|CD45 is a hematopoietic lineage-restricted antigen that is expressed on all hematopoietic cells except for some mature cell types. Cells expressing CD45 and CD34 but lacking CD38 and lineage antigens (CD45+CD34+CD38-Lin- cells) are well-documented hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), and CD45+CD34-CD38-Lin- cells are probably less mature HSCs. In myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), the malignant transformation site is a matter of debate, and CD45+CD34+CD38-Lin- HSCs were recently reported to be clonal. In the study reported here, we detected CD45-CD34-CD38-Lin- cells in the peripheral blood and bone marrow of patients with MDS and isolated them by successive application of density centrifugation, magnetic cell sorting, and fluorescence-activated cell sorting. Fluorescence in situ hybridization showed that CD45-CD34-CD38-Lin- cells had the same chromosomal aberration as the myeloblasts. In addition to CD45- and CD34-, they lacked CD117 and CD133 expression. Generally, MDS cells have extremely reduced hematopoietic potential compared with normal hematopoietic cells, but we documented the following in some patients. Freshly isolated CD45-CD34-CD38-Lin- cells did not form any hematopoietic colonies but had long-term culture-initiating cell activity. When cocultured with stroma cells, CD45-CD34-CD38-Lin- cells showed only weak potential for proliferation and differentiation, yet they differentiated into CD34+ cells and then mature myeloid cells. This newly identified cell population represents the most immature immunophenotype so far identified in the hematopoietic lineage and is involved in the malignant clone in MDS. 23|Vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) (OMIM %193000), a common cause of childhood renal failure, is strongly influenced by hereditary factors. Familial VUR most closely conforms to autosomal-dominant inheritance, but because of variable penetrance and expressivity, large multigenerational pedigrees tractable to linkage analysis have been difficult to ascertain. A single genome-wide study of familial VUR has demonstrated linkage to chromosome 1p13, with 78% locus heterogeneity. Previous studies in humans have also suggested loci on chromosomes 6p21, 10q26, and 19q13, whereas mutations in ROBO2 were recently reported in some patients with VUR. Replication of these studies was attempted in seven previously undescribed families from Italy and the United States. Simulation studies, assuming 50% locus heterogeneity, showed that these kindreds had 85% power to replicate linkage and 53% power to achieve genome-wide significance at candidate intervals. Thirty-five markers on chromosomes 1p13, 3p12, 6p21, 10q26, and 19q13 were genotyped and analysis of linkage under a variety of models was performed. Parametric analysis excluded linkage to all candidate loci under genetic homogeneity; moreover, the data did not support statistically significant linkage under models of locus heterogeneity. Similarly, nonparametric, allele-sharing analysis did not reveal any evidence of linkage at any of the loci tested. Thus, despite sufficient power, linkage of familial VUR to previously reported candidate intervals could not be replicated. These data demonstrate substantial genetic heterogeneity of VUR and suggest that mapping strategies relying on a large number of kindreds or single "loaded" pedigrees will be most effective to achieve replication or detection of linkage. 24|The PTEN gene, located on chromosome 10, is a phosphatase in the phosphatidylinositol 3'-kinase (PI3'K)-mediated signal transduction pathway. PTEN inhibits the activation of Akt, a serine-threonine kinase involved in proliferative metabolic and anti-apoptotic pathways, and has tumor suppressor properties. We used a PTEN adenoviral vector, Ad-MMAC, to assess the role of PTEN in the treatment of prostate cancer. Infection of Ad-MMAC in PC-3 and LNCaP prostate cancer cells (PTEN deleted, up-regulation of phosphorylated Akt) resulted in PTEN expression and significantly decreased growth compared with Ad-CTR or mock infected cells. Infection of Ad-MMAC did not inhibit the growth of DU-145 cells (wild-type PTEN). Combination therapy with Ad-MMAC and doxorubicin improved the efficacy of PTEN gene therapy in PC-3 and DU-145 cells. These data demonstrate that PTEN gene therapy can effectively treat some prostate cancers that have genomic alterations in PTEN. In others, PTEN gene therapy combined with chemotherapy is more effective. 25|Genomes of solid tumors are characterized by gains and losses of regions, which may contribute to tumorigenesis by altering gene expression. Often the aberrations are extensive, encompassing whole chromosome arms, which makes identification of candidate genes in these regions difficult. Here, we focused on narrow regions of gene amplification to facilitate identification of genetic pathways important in oral squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) development. We used array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) to define minimum common amplified regions and then used expression analysis to identify candidate driver genes in amplicons that spanned <3 Mb. We found genes involved in integrin signaling (TLN1), survival (YAP1, BIRC2), and adhesion and migration (TLN1, LAMA3, MMP7), as well as members of the hedgehog (GLI2) and notch (JAG1, RBPSUH, FJX1) pathways to be amplified and overexpressed. Deregulation of these and other members of the hedgehog and notch pathways (HHIP, SMO, DLL1, NOTCH4) implicates deregulation of developmental and differentiation pathways, cell fate misspecification, in oral SCC development. 26|The capacity to correct a mutant gene within the context of the chromosome holds great promise as a therapy for inherited disorders but fulfilling this promise has proven to be challenging. However, steady progress is being made and the development of gene repair as a viable and robust approach is underway. Here, we present some of the recent advances that are helping to shape our thinking about the feasibility and the limitations of this technique. For the most part, these advances center on understanding the regulation of the reaction and validating its application in animal models. 27|We describe a method for monitoring chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients treated with imatinib that uses fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) to detect BCR-ABL in peripheral blood (PB) granulocytes. First, we compared this method, termed Neutrophil-FISH, with interphase FISH (i-FISH) analysis of bone marrow (BM), i-FISH analysis of PB mononuclear cells, and conventional cytogenetic analysis (CCA) of BM in 30 consecutive CML patients. We found the percentage of BCR-ABL-positive neutrophils as determined by Neutrophil-FISH to correlate best with the percentage of Philadelphia chromosome-positive metaphases in the BM determined by CCA (y = 0.8818x + 5.7249; r(2) = 0.968).We then performed a serial Neutrophil-FISH study of 10 chronic-phase CML patients treated with imatinib and found that the technique could clearly separate imatinib responders from nonresponders within 12 weeks of drug administration. There was a significant difference in the percentages of BCR-ABL-positive neutrophils between responder (mean 3 SD, 18.2% 3 11.8%) and nonresponder (82.4% 3 5.1%) groups at 12 weeks (P < .0001, Student t test).Together with real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis, Neutrophil-FISH represents another useful method for monitoring CML patients during the primary myelosuppressive stage of imatinib therapy because it is a quick, simple, and reliable method for assessing cytogenetic response. 28|The Prader-Willi/Angelman Critical Region (PWACR; Chromosome 15q11-13) is of interest as a potential locus for genes conferring susceptibility to autism spectrum disorders (ASD). This report describes a female proband referred for evaluation of a possible ASD. Genetic analyses indicated that the proband, her father and one of her sisters, carried a paternally derived interstitial duplication involving 15q11-13. The proband showed evidence of ASD (PDD-NOS), borderline mental retardation, mild hypotonia and joint laxity. Her father and her sister were of normal intelligence and neither was thought to have an ASD, although speech/language difficulties and some autistic type behaviours were reported to have been present early in the development of the sister. This is one of the first reports of a child with a paternal duplication and an autism spectrum disorder. More research is required to determine whether paternally derived duplications that involve 15q11-13 are associated with developmental impairments. 29|Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), like other autoimmune diseases, has a complex genetic basis. Rapid technical advances in high-throughput genotyping and analysis have now reached a point where genes of low-to-moderate risk can be identified using a variety of study designs, including whole genome association studies. The availability of large, well-characterized populations of cases and controls are critical to the success of these efforts. A functional variant (R620W) of the intracellular protein tyrosine phosphatase N22 (PTPN22) has now been conclusively shown to confer approximately two-fold risk for seropositive RA as well as several other autoimmune disorders. PTPN22 appears to act primarily by setting thresholds for T-cell receptor signaling, and the current data suggest that the PTPN22 620W allele is likely to be a general risk factor for the development of humoral autoimmunity. PTPN22 is expressed widely in hematopoietic cells, but other than in T cells, its role is unknown. These results provide strong evidence for the longstanding hypothesis that common genes underlie different autoimmune phenotypes and emphasize that finding genes of only moderate risk can provide important insights into disease pathogenesis. 30|The genetic structure of 26 identified nationalities from Yunnan Province of China was studied using Y chromosome haplogroups. A total of 12 haplogroups were obtained in 1214 male samples from all the nationalities. The genetic relationships among 26 nationalities were studied. The ethnic groups were compared according to their different ancient lineages. The ancient lineages had their own characteristics in the distribution of Y chromosome haplogroups. Our results showed that Yunnan Province has great genetic diversity in its people. The ethnic groups differ from each other in the number of haplogroups and haplogroup frequencies. The genetic evidence was in agreement with the study of linguistic and historical records. 31|The first flow cytometric analyses were of total cellular DNA or protein content. The advent of labeled antibodies, first polyclonal and then monoclonal, led to the analysis of cellular content of specific antigen molecules and a myriad of immunological applications. Although, strictly speaking, it is incorrect to use the word "cytometry" for anything that does not refer to cellular measurements, the term has been used for a variety of non-cellular measurements such as chromosome analysis and solution molecular measurements. In recent years, there has been an increase in the development of methods to analyze molecules and their properties in solution. These analyses have ranged from ensemble measurements, primarily fluorescence-based immunoassays, to single molecule detection with applications in DNA analysis. 32|An important proportion of the human genome is organized in regions of high linkage disequilibrium (LD) and low haplotype diversity, referred to as haplotype blocks. Here, we perform a genome-wide screen of haplotype-like blocks presenting just two main haplotypes at a frequency higher than 1%, based on single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) frequencies from two populations: African-Americans and Caucasians, using data from the Celera SNP database. These haplotype-like blocks of reduced diversity are more abundant and of longer size in Caucasians, in agreement with population history. Several of the discovered blocks are good candidates for targets of natural selection, such as those blocks containing a cluster of bitter taste receptors or the apolipoprotein L1. In addition, several genes putatively involved in susceptibility to common diseases are included in these haplotype-like blocks of reduced diversity. This fact may present important implications in association studies, leading to a reduction of genotyping efforts. 33|PURPOSE: To report the phenotype and characterization of a new, naturally occurring mouse model of hereditary retinal degeneration (rd12). METHODS: The retinal phenotype of rd12 mice were studied using serial indirect ophthalmoscopy, fundus photography, electroretinography (ERG), genetic analysis including linkage studies and gene identification, immunohistochemistry, and biochemical analysis. RESULTS: Mice homozygous for the rd12 mutation showed small punctate white spots on fundus examination at 5 months of age. The retina in the rd12 homozygote had a normal appearance at the light microscopic level until 6 weeks of age when occasional voids appeared in the outer segments (OS) of the photoreceptor (PR) cells. The outer nuclear layer (ONL) appeared normal until 3 months of age though more obvious voids were detected in the OS. By 7 months of age, 6 to 8 layers of ONL remained in the mutant retina, and the OS were obviously shorter. The first sign of retinal degeneration was detected at the electron microscopic level around 3 weeks of age when occasional small lipid-like droplets were detected in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). By 3 months of age, much larger, lipid-like droplets accumulated in RPE cells accompanied by some OS degeneration. While the histology indicated a relatively slow retinal degeneration in the rd12 homozygous mutant mice, the rod ERG response was profoundly diminished even at 3 weeks of age. Genetic analysis showed that rd12 was an autosomal recessive mutation and mapped to mouse chromosome 3 closely linked to D3Mit19, a location known to be near the mouse Rpe65 gene. Sequence analysis showed that the mouse retinal degeneration is caused by a nonsense mutation in exon 3 of the Rpe65 gene, and the gene symbol for the rd12 mutation has been updated to Rpe65rd12 to reflect this. No RPE65 expression, 11-cis retinal, or rhodopsin could be detected in retinas from rd12 homozygotes, while retinyl esters were found to accumulate in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). CONCLUSIONS: Mutations in the retinal pigment epithelium gene encoding RPE65 cause an early onset autosomal recessive form of human retinitis pigmentosa, known as Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), which results in blindness or severely impaired vision in children. A naturally arising mouse Rpe65 mutation provides a good model for studying the pathology of human RPE65 mutations and the effects of retinyl ester accumulation. 34|OBJECTIVES: Several studies have suggested mitochondrial abnormality in bipolar disorder. We reported the association of mitochondrial complex I subunit gene, NDUFV2 at 18p11, with bipolar disorder. A decrease in the mRNA expression of this gene was found in patients with bipolar disorder compared with controls. However, it was unclear whether only the NDUFV2 gene exhibited the decreased expression level in bipolar disorder. The aim of this study was to clarify the association of other nuclear-encoded complex I subunit genes and mitochondria-related genes with bipolar disorder. METHODS: We quantified the mRNA expression level of five nuclear-encoded mitochondrial complex I subunit genes located at the chromosomal regions linked with bipolar disorder other than NDUFV2, three complex IV subunit genes, and four mitochondrial transcription-related genes using a real-time quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction method in the lymphoblastoid cell lines from 21 patients with bipolar disorder and 11 controls. RESULTS: Decreased mRNA expression in patients with bipolar I disorder compared with control subjects was found in most of the complex I subunit genes. In addition, decreased expression levels of these genes correlated with that of NDUFV2. No statistically significant alterations of mRNA expression levels were found between bipolar patients and controls among two of three complex IV subunit genes and all transcription-related genes. CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that the decreased expression of NDUFV2 has a considerable effect on other subunit genes in the mitochondrial respiratory chain and presents further evidence of the biological significance of NDUFV2 in bipolar disorder. 35|Genome-wide screening of DNA copy number aberrations in 27 cell lines derived from non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLCs), using a custom-made comparative genomic hybridization (CGH)-array, identified a homozygous deletion of the deleted in bladder cancer 1 gene (DBC1) in one cell line. Homozygous deletion of DBC1, located at 9q33.1, was also observed in two of 53 primary NSCLC tumors examined. Moreover, 21 of the other 26 cell lines showed complete loss of DBC1 expression, although normal lung tissues express this gene, and treatment with 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine restored expression of DBC1. Hypermethylation in part of a CpG island around the exon 1 of DBC1 has been reported in urothelial cancers, but the potential association between methylation and expression status was never clarified in that disease. In our experiments, a different part of the same CpG island showed promoter activity in vitro and was frequently methylated in our cell lines and primary tumors of NSCLC, where methylation status correlated inversely with gene expression. Among our primary NSCLC cases, methylation of the DBC1 promoter occurred more frequently in men, elderly patients and smokers than in women, younger patients and nonsmokers respectively, but it was not correlated with tumor stage or histology. Exogenous overexpression of DBC1 in NSCLC cell lines lacking its expression inhibited cell growth. Our results provide the first evidence that DBC1 is a likely tumor suppressor for NSCLC; silencing of the gene through homozygous deletion or methylation of its promoter region may be associated with progression of this disease. 36|In all, 85% of Ewing's sarcoma family tumors (ESFT), a neoplasm of unknown histogenesis, express EWS-FLI1 transcription factor gene fusions. To characterize direct target genes avoiding artificial model systems, we cloned genomic DNA from ESFT chromatin precipitating with EWS-FLI1. We now present a comprehensive list of 99 putative transcription factor targets identified, for the first time, by a hypothesis-free approach based on physical interaction. Gene-derived chromatin fragments co-precipitating with EWS-FLI1 were nonrandomly distributed over the human genome and localized predominantly to the upstream region and the first two introns of the genes. At least 20% of putative direct EWS-FLI1 targets were neural genes. One-third of genes recovered showed a significant ESFT-specific expression pattern and were found to be altered upon RNAi-mediated knockdown of EWS-FLI1. Among them, MK-STYX, encoding a MAP kinase phosphatase-like protein, was consistently expressed in ESFT. EWS-FLI1 was found to drive MK-STYX expression by binding to a single ETS binding motif within the first gene intron. MK-STYX serves as precedence for successful recovery of direct EWS-FLI1 targets from the authentic ESFT cellular context, the most relevant system to study oncogenic mechanisms for the discovery of new therapeutic targets in this disease. 37|Complete or partial triplication of human chromosome 21 results in Down syndrome (DS). To analyze differential gene expressions in amniotic fluid (AF) cells of DS, we used a DNA microarray system to analyze 102 genes, which included 24 genes on chromosome 21, 28 genes related to the function of brain and muscle, 36 genes related to apoptosis, 4 genes related to extracellular matrix, 8 genes related to other molecular function and 2 house-keeping genes. AF cells were collected from 12 pregnancies at 16-18 weeks of gestation in DS (n=6) and normal (n=6) subjects. Our DNA microarray experiments showed that the expressions of 11 genes were altered by at least 2-folds in DS, as follows. Ten genes, COL6A1, CASP5, AKT2, JUN, PYGM, BNIP1, OSF-2, PRSS7, COL3A1, and MBLL were down-regulated and GSTT1 was only up-regulated. The differential expressions of GSTT1 and COL3A1 were further confirmed by semi-quantitative RT-PCR for each sample. The gene dosage hypothesis on chromosome 21 may explain the neurological and other symptoms of DS. However, our results showed that only two genes (COL6A1 and PRSS7), among 24 genes on chromosome 21, were down-regulated in the AF cells of DS. Our data may provide the basis for a more systematic identification of biological markers of fetal DS, thus leading to an improved understanding of pathogenesis for fetal DS. 38|The post-irradiation changes of dicentric and centric ring levels were studied in Chernobyl liquidators using the data of 507 individual chromosomal surveys of persons sampled at different time after their activities at Chernobyl NPP accident zone. The time-effect relationship within 0-10.5 years after exposure was displayed as exponential decline of the mean chromosome exchange frequency with average decay half-time 2.2 y. During 10.5-13 years after exposure the increasing and stabilization of chromosome exchange yield on the level 2-3-times higher than control was observed. In the first few months after irradiation the dicentric and centric ring frequency in liquidators had the clear reverse correlation with the duration of person's duties at the Chernobyl zone. The parameters of unstable chromosome exchange elimination were independent on the initially induced aberration yield, that resulted in earlier reaching the subcontrol level in persons who had more protracted duration of duties at the Chernobyl accident zone. 39|Because Caenorhabditis elegans lacks several components of the de novo sterol biosynthetic pathway, it requires sterol as an essential nutrient. Supplemented cholesterol undergoes extensive enzymatic modification in C. elegans to form other sterols of unknown function. 7-Dehydrocholesterol reductase (DHCR) catalyzes the reduction of the Delta7 double bond of sterols and is suspected to be defective in C. elegans, in which the major endogenous sterol is 7-dehydrocholesterol (7DHC). We microinjected a human DHCR expression vector into C. elegans, which was then incorporated into chromosome by gamma-radiation. This transgenic C. elegans was named cholegans, i.e., cholesterol-producing C. elegans, because it was able to convert 7DHC into cholesterol. We investigated the effects of changes in sterol composition on longevity and stress resistance by examining brood size, mean life span, UV resistance, and thermotolerance. Cholegans contained 80% more cholesterol than the wild-type control. The brood size of cholegans was reduced by 40% compared to the wild-type control, although the growth rate was not significantly changed. The mean life span of cholegans was increased up to 131% in sterol-deficient medium as compared to wild-type. The biochemical basis for life span extension of cholegans appears to partly result from its acquired resistance against both UV irradiation and thermal stress. 40|Positive linkage of schizophrenia to chromosome 8p22-21 loci had been reported in the Caucasian samples. This study was designed to replicate this finding by using eleven microsatellite markers on chromosome 8p22-21 in 52 Taiwanese schizophrenic families with at least two affected siblings. Two phenotype models (narrow: DSM-IV schizophrenia only; and broad: including schizophrenia, schizoaffective, and other non-affective psychotic disorders) were used to define the disease phenotype. Maximum non-parametric linkage scores (NPL score) of 2.45 (P = 0.008) and 1.89 (P = 0.02) were obtained for the marker D8S1222 under the broad and narrow models, respectively. Positive linkage was found across about a 4-cM region. The marker D8S1222 was about 400 kbp distal to the exon 1 of glial growth factor 2 (GGF2), an isoform of Neuregulin 1 gene (NRG1), which has been highly suggested to be a candidate gene for schizophrenia. The results provide suggestive linkage evidence of schizophrenia to loci near NRG1 on chromosome 8p21 in an ethnically distinct Taiwanese sample. Further exploration of the candidate gene and nearby chromosome regions is warranted. 41|Telomeres are the tandem repetitive sequence at the end of chromosomes and its integrity is crucial for cell vitality. We studied the effect of (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), one of the major tea polyphenols, on telomeres in HeLa, 293 cells and MRC-5 fibroblasts. At concentrations of above 50 microM, EGCG was found to causes telomere fragmentation in HeLa cells as a result of single-strand breaks in a dose-dependent manner. Treatment of EGCG also caused telomere fragmentation in 293 cells but had little or only marginal effect on MRC-5 fibroblasts. The telomere fragments detected by electrophoresis showed a unique size distribution that seems to suggest that the strand breaks were not produced randomly, but with preference at some specific sites. We speculate that the differential effect of EGCG in inducing telomere fragmentation in HeLa and 293 verse MRC-5 cells might be relevant to the apoptosis-inducing effect of EGCG on cancerous cells but not on normal cells. 42|Background: The spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) imparts fidelity to chromosome segregation by delaying anaphase until all sister chromatid pairs have become bipolarly attached. Mad2 is a component of the SAC effector complex that sequesters Cdc20 to halt anaphase. In prometaphase, Mad2 is recruited to kinetochores with the help of Mad1, and it is activated to bind Cdc20. These events are linked to the existence of two distinct conformers of Mad2: a closed conformer bound to its kinetochore receptor Mad1 or its target in the checkpoint Cdc20 and an open conformer unbound to these ligands. Results: We investigated the mechanism of Mad2 recruitment to the kinetochore during checkpoint activation and subsequent transfer to Cdc20. We report that a closed conformer of Mad2 constitutively bound to Mad1, rather than Mad1 itself, is the kinetochore receptor for cytosolic open Mad2 and show that the interaction of open and closed Mad2 conformers is essential to sustain the SAC. Conclusions: We propose that closed Mad2 bound to Mad1 represents a template for the conversion of open Mad2 into closed Mad2 bound to Cdc20. This simple model, which we have named the "Mad2 template" model, predicts a mechanism for cytosolic propagation of the spindle checkpoint signal away from kinetochores. 43|DNA is packaged as chromatin in the interphase nucleus. During mitosis, chromatin fibers are highly condensed to form metaphase chromosomes, which ensure equal segregation of replicated chromosomal DNA into the daughter cells. Despite >1 century of research on metaphase chromosomes, information regarding the higher order structure of metaphase chromosomes is limited, and it is still not clear which proteins are involved in further folding of the chromatin fiber into metaphase chromosomes. To obtain a global view of the chromosomal proteins, we performed proteome analyses on three types of isolated human metaphase chromosomes. We first show the results from comparative proteome analyses of two types of isolated human metaphase chromosomes that have been frequently used in biochemical and morphological analyses. 209 proteins were quantitatively identified and classified into six groups on the basis of their known interphase localization. Furthermore, a list of 107 proteins was obtained from the proteome analyses of highly purified metaphase chromosomes, the majority of which are essential for chromosome structure and function. Based on the information obtained on these proteins and on their localizations during mitosis as assessed by immunostaining, we present a four-layer model of metaphase chromosomes. According to this model, the chromosomal proteins have been newly classified into each of four groups: chromosome coating proteins, chromosome peripheral proteins, chromosome structural proteins, and chromosome fibrous proteins. This analysis represents the first compositional view of human metaphase chromosomes and provides a protein framework for future research on this topic. 44|Persistent organochlorine pollutants (POPs) such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p'-DDE), the major metabolite of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), are stable lipophilic compounds widely found in the environment and in the general population. They can enter the food chain, and their negative impact on male reproduction is currently under active scrutiny. To explore the hypothesis that environmental exposure to these compounds is associated with altered sperm chromatin structure integrity in human sperm, we conducted a study of 176 Swedish fishermen (with low and high consumption of fatty fish, a very important exposure source of POPs). We determined serum levels of 2,2',4,4',5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (CB-153) and p,p'-DDE, and we used the sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA) to assess sperm DNA/chromatin integrity. When CB-153 serum levels (individual dose range, 39-1,460 ng/g lipid) were categorized into equally sized quintiles, we found an association with the DNA fragmentation index (%DFI). A significantly lower %DFI was found in the lowest CB-153 quintile (< 113 ng/g lipid) compared with the other quintiles; there was a similar tendency, although not statistically significant, between %DFI and p,p'-DDE. These results suggest that POP exposure may have a slight negative impact on human sperm chromatin integrity. 45|Complex forms of hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) are rare and usually transmitted in an autosomal recessive pattern. A family of four generations with autosomal dominant hereditary spastic paraplegia (AD-HSP) and a complex phenotype with variably expressed co-existing ataxia, dysarthria, unipolar depression, epilepsy, migraine, and cognitive impairment was investigated. Genetic linkage analysis and sequencing of the SPG4 gene was performed and electrophysiologic investigations were carried out in six individuals and positron emission tomography (PET) in one patient. The disease was linked to the SPG4 locus on chromosome 2p as previously reported for pure HSP. Sequence analysis of the SPG4 (spastin) gene identified a novel 1593 C > T (GLN490Stop) mutation leading to premature termination of exon 12 with ensuing truncation of the encoded protein. However, the mutation was only identified in those individuals who were clinically affected by a complex phenotype consisting of HSP and cerebellar ataxia. Other features noted in this kindred including epilepsy, cognitive impairment, depression, and migraine did not segregate with the HSP phenotype or mutation, and therefore the significance of these features to SPG4 is unclear. Electrophysiologic investigation showed increased central conduction time at somatosensory evoked potentials measured from the lower limbs as the only abnormal finding in two affected individuals with the SPG4 mutation. Moreover, PET of one patient showed significantly relatively decreased regional cerebral blood flow in most of the cerebellum. We conclude that this kindred demonstrates a considerable overlap between cerebellar ataxia and spastic paraplegia, emphasizing the marked clinical heterogeneity of HSP associated with spastin mutations. 46|By comparing differential gene expression in the insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-IR null cell fibroblast cell line (R- cells) with cells overexpressing the IGF-IR (R+ cells), we identified the Mystique gene expressed as alternatively spliced variants. The human homologue of Mystique is located on chromosome 8p21.2 and encodes a PDZ LIM domain protein (PDLIM2). GFP-Mystique was colocalized at cytoskeleton focal contacts with alpha-actinin and beta1-integrin. Only one isoform of endogenous human Mystique protein, Mystique 2, was detected in cell lines. Mystique 2 was more abundant in nontransformed MCF10A breast epithelial cells than in MCF-7 breast carcinoma cells and was induced by IGF-I and cell adhesion. Overexpression of Mystique 2 in MCF-7 cells suppressed colony formation in soft agarose and enhanced cell adhesion to collagen and fibronectin. Point mutation of either the PDZ or LIM domain was sufficient to reverse suppression of colony formation, but mutation of the PDZ domain alone was sufficient to abolish enhanced adhesion. Knockdown of Mystique 2 with small interfering RNA abrogated both adhesion and migration in MCF10A and MCF-7 cells. The data indicate that Mystique is an IGF-IR-regulated adapter protein located at the actin cytoskeleton that is necessary for the migratory capacity of epithelial cells. 47|A DNA variant, rs734232, altering a RUNX1 binding site was recently reported as susceptibility allele at PSORS2 (17q25) in cohorts of psoriasis patients from the US. A testing of this variant in psoriasis patients from Germany did not confirm this association in 300 trios nor in two case-control studies with 281 patients with psoriasis vulgaris and 375 patients with psoriatic arthritis, respectively. These results fail to support rs734232 as a psoriasis susceptibility factor in German psoriasis patients. 48|Plk1 is a multifunctional protein kinase involved in regulation of mitotic entry, chromosome segregation, centrosome maturation, and mitotic exit. Plk1 is a target of DNA damage checkpoints and aids resumption of the cell cycle during recovery from G2 arrest. The polo-box domain (PBD) of Plk1 interacts with phosphoproteins and localizes Plk1 to some mitotic structures. In a search for proteins that interact with the PBD of Plk1, we identified two of the minichromosome maintenance (MCM) proteins, Mcm2 and Mcm7. Co-immunoprecipitation and immunoblot analysis showed an interaction between full-length Plk1 and all other members of the MCM2-7 protein complex. Endogenous Plk1 co-immunoprecipitates with basal forms of Mcm7 as well as with slower migrating forms of Mcm7, induced in response to DNA damage. The strongest interaction between endogenous Plk1 and Mcm7 was detected in a soluble chromatin fraction. These findings suggest a new function for Plk1 in coordination of DNA replication and mitotic events. 49|Eukaryotic chromatin structure limits the initiation of DNA replication spatially to chromosomal origin zones and temporally to the ordered firing of origins during S phase. Here, we show that the level of histone H4 acetylation correlates with the frequency of replication initiation as measured by the abundance of short nascent DNA strands within the human c-myc and lamin B2 origins, but less well with the frequency of initiation across the beta-globin locus. Treatment of HeLa cells with trichostatin A (TSA) reversibly increased the acetylation level of histone H4 globally and at these initiation sites. At all three origins, TSA treatment transiently promoted a more dispersive pattern of initiations, decreasing the abundance of nascent DNA at previously preferred initiation sites while increasing the nascent strand abundance at lower frequency genomic initiation sites. When cells arrested in late G1 were released into TSA, they completed S phase more rapidly than untreated cells, possibly due to the earlier initiation from late-firing origins, as exemplified by the beta-globin origin. Thus, TSA may modulate replication origin activity through its effects on chromatin structure, by changing the selection of initiation sites, and by advancing the time at which DNA synthesis can begin at some initiation sites. 50|We have analysed Y chromosome polymorphism on six STR markers (DYS19, DYS389I, DYS390, DYS391, DYS392, and DYS393) and eight classical UEP markers (SRY10831a, YAP, SRY4064, M2, 92R7, M9, SRY2627 and 12f2) in three distinct ethnical, linguistic and cultural groups of Jerba island (Berbers, Arabs and a Jerban group of Sub-Saharan origin). Fst genetic distance and principal co-ordinate analysis based on STR haplotype frequencies, showed a genetic differentiation between the three Jerban groups and a genetic relationship between Jerban Berbers and Mozabites (a well defined Berber group in Algeria). Compound use of UEP and STR markers have increased discriminatory capacity. The detection of the most common haplotype (H9) in both Berbers and Mozabites may be useful in forensic special cases. 51|A glia-mediated, inflammatory immune response is an important component of the neuropathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease, of the midlife neurodegeneration of Down's syndrome, and of other age-related neurodegenerative conditions. All of these conditions are associated with early and often dramatic activation of, and cytokine overexpression in, microglia and astrocytes, sometimes decades before pathological changes consistent with a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease are apparent, as in patients with Down's syndrome or head injury. Brains of normal elderly individuals also often show Alzheimer-type neuropathological changes, although to a lesser degree than those seen in Alzheimer's disease itself. These normal age-related glial changes, likely a response to the normal wear and tear of the aging process, raise the threshold of glial activation and thus may explain the fact that even genetically determined Alzheimer's disease, resulting from genetic mutations such as those in beta-amyloid precursor protein and presenilins or from genetic duplication such as of chromosome 21, only shows the full manifestation of the disease decades after birth. In the more common sporadic form of Alzheimer's disease, age-related increases in glial activation and expression of cytokines may act in synergy with other genetic and acquired environmental risks to culminate in the development of disease. 52|Based on gene profiling, two entities of uveal melanomas exist. So far, these two entities can be distinguished by the chromosome 3 status which strongly associates with the metastatic potential of the tumours. Reorganization of the extracellular matrix is one of the steps towards dissemination of tumour cells. In the present study, we examined the tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinases (TIMP) 3 expression in 19 uveal melanomas and compared the results with histopathological and genetic features. The expression level of TIMP-3 mRNA as determined by microarray analysis was associated with the chromosome 3 status of the tumour (p = 0.003). All tumours with disomy 3 showed moderate to high expression of TIMP-3 mRNA, whereas TIMP-3 was highly expressed in one tumour, less expressed in 3 tumours and absent in the remaining 6 tumours with monosomy 3. Immunohistochemistry for TIMP-3 was positive in 9/19 tumours, but only in 3 tumours were more than 5% of the tumour cells stained positive. There was no association between immunohistochemical detection of TIMP-3 and chromosome 3 status. In tumours with disomy 3, we found none or very few TIMP-3-positive cells though the mRNA level was high which indirectly postulates posttranscriptional problems in protein biosynthesis in this entity of uveal melanomas. There was a trend between TIMP-3 protein expression and both cell type (p = 0.11) and presence of loops and/or networks (p = 0.06) in tumour which may indicate a role of TIMP-3 in the biology of uveal melanoma. 53|Most tumor cells are characterized by increased genomic instability and chromosome segregational defects, often associated with hyperamplification of the centrosome and the formation of multipolar spindles. However, extra centrosomes do not always lead to multipolarity. Here, we describe a process of centrosomal clustering that prevented the formation of multipolar spindles in noncancer cells. Noncancer cells needed to overcome this clustering mechanism to allow multipolar spindles to form at a high frequency. The microtubule motor cytoplasmic dynein was a critical part of this coalescing machinery, and in some tumor cells overexpression of the spindle protein NuMA interfered with dynein localization, promoting multipolarity. 54|OBJECTIVE: The authors previously reported two families (pedigrees 324 and 5501) in which Darier's disease-a rare, autosomal dominant skin disease-and bipolar disorder cosegregate. In each of these families there is complete cosegregation of mood disorder with a segment of chromosome 12q23-q24, consistent with the existence of a highly penetrant dominant variant. Here molecular genetic analyses aimed at localizing and identifying the susceptibility gene in this region are reported. METHOD: In the two families, the authors undertook 1) linkage and haplotype studies using 45 highly polymorphic molecular genetic markers in order to delineate the region of interest and 2) direct analysis of genes within this region. RESULTS: Linkage and haplotype information from the most severely affected individuals defined a region of interest that spanned two neighboring regions of 19 megabases (Mb) (D12S362-D12S1646) and 7 Mb (D12S1718-D12S837). Information from all individuals refined the region of interest to 6.5 Mb (D12S127-D12S1646). Systematic study of the coding and flanking intronic regions of 25 known genes within this latter region failed to identify any highly penetrant autosomal dominant disease-conferring mutations in these pedigrees. CONCLUSIONS: This linkage and haplotype analysis, together with data from several other linkage studies, provides compelling evidence for the existence in the 12q23-q24 region of one or more genes involved in the pathogenesis of bipolar disorder. Further molecular genetic analysis of this region is required to identify the gene(s). 55|Molecular cytogenetic techniques enabled us to clarify numerical and structural alterations previously detected by conventional cytogenetic techniques in 37 patients who had myelodysplastic syndromes with complex karyotypes. Using high-resolution comparative genomic hybridization (HR-CGH), we found the most recurrent alterations to be deletion of 5q (70%), 18q (35%), 7q (32%), 11q (30%), and 20q (24%), gain of 11q (35%) and 8q (24%), and trisomy of chromosome 8 (19%). Furthermore, in 35% of the patients, 20 amplifications were identified. These amplifications were shown by FISH to involve some genes previously described as amplified in hematological malignancies, such as ERBB2, MLL, and RUNX1. In addition, two other genes, BCL6 and BCL2, which are classically related to apoptosis and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, were shown for the first time to be involved in amplification. Genomic alterations involving different subtelomeric regions with losses in 4p16, 5p15.3, 6q27, 18p11.3, and 18q23 and gains in 1p36.3 and 19p13.3 were detected by HR-CGH. Array CGH analysis of the subtelomeric regions in some samples was able to confirm a number of these alterations and found some additional alterations not detected by conventional CGH. 56|We study the effects of the genetic sequence on the propagation of nonlinear excitations in simple models of DNA in which we incorporate actual data from the human genome. We show that kink propagation requires forces over a certain threshold, a phenomenon already found for aperiodic sequences [F. Domínguez-Adame et al., Phys. Rev. E 52, 2183 (1995)]. For forces below threshold, the final stop positions are highly dependent on the specific sequence. Contrary to the conjecture advanced by Domínguez-Adame and co-workers, we find no evidence supporting the dependence of the kink dynamics on the information content of the genetic sequences considered. We discuss possible reasons for that result as well as its practical consequences. Physically, the results of our model are consistent with the stick-slip dynamics of the unzipping process observed in experiments. We also show that the effective potential, a collective coordinate formalism introduced by Salerno and Kivshar [Phys. Lett. A 193, 263 (1994)], is a useful tool to identify key regions in DNA that control the dynamical behavior of large segments. As a side result, we extend the previous studies on aperiodic sequences by analyzing the effect of the initial position of the kink, leading to further insight on the phenomenology observed in such systems. 57|Myoepithelium is an integral part of the mammary ductal and lobular architecture, positioned between luminal cells and the basement membrane. We describe the first report on cytogenetic findings in an adenomyoepithelioma of the breast with a balanced t(8;16)(p23;q21), and provide gene expression profile using Affymetrix GeneChip U95AV2 (Affymetrix, Santa Clara, CA). Differential analysis identified 857 genes with 2-fold or more mRNA change in comparison to pooled normal breast control; immunohistochemical analysis was used to confirm these results in a limited number of genes. Expression results were grouped based on the chromosomal location of the genes and associated protein function, and identified several potential pathogenetic mechanisms (autocrine and paracrine growth stimuli) in the development of myoepithelial tumors. 58|OBJECTIVE: To report the first known case of 6p deletion presenting in utero with hydrops fetalis and multiple anomalies in the second trimester of pregnancy. METHODS: A thirty-year-old woman (gravida 3 para 1 abortion 1) was referred to our hospital at 18 weeks of gestation because of suspicion of fetal anomaly on routine ultrasound examination. A detailed anomaly scan revealed a single viable fetus with marked skin edema, marked ascites, pleural effusion, hydronephrosis of left kidney, absence of right kidney, cardiac anomaly and oligohydramnios. The fetal face was not visible due to the fetal position. Fetal karyotyping revealed 46,XX,del(6)(p21.3). The couple opted to terminate the pregnancy. RESULTS: A hydropic female fetus was aborted and the autopsy revealed hydrops fetalis with bilateral cleft lips, hydronephrosis of left kidney, absence of right kidney, spleen, and thymus gland, truncus arteriosus, and single umbilical artery. Cord blood and tissue culture confirmed that the fetus had deletion of chromosome 6p. CONCLUSION: Deletion of short arm of chromosome 6 can result in hydrops fetalis in early pregnancy. 59|The CYP3A genes reside on chromosome 7q21 in a multigene cluster. The enzyme products of CYP3A4 and CYP3A43 are involved in testosterone metabolism. CYP3A4 and CYP3A5 have been associated previously with prostate cancer occurrence and severity. To comprehensively examine the effects of these genes on prostate cancer occurrence and severity, we studied 622 incident prostate cancer cases and 396 controls. Substantial and race-specific linkage disequilibrium was observed between CYP3A4 and CYP3A5 in both races but not between other pairs of loci. We found no association of CYP3A5 genotypes with prostate cancer or disease severity. CYP3A43*3 was associated with family history-positive prostate cancer (age- and race-adjusted odds ratio = 5.86, 95% confidence interval, 1.10-31.16). CYP3A4*1B was associated inversely with the probability of having prostate cancer in Caucasians (age-adjusted odds ratio = 0.54, 95% confidence interval, 0.32-0.94). We also observed significant interactions among these loci associated with prostate cancer occurrence and severity. There were statistically significant differences in haplotype frequencies involving these three genes in high-stage cases (P < 0.05) compared with controls. The observation that CYP3A4 and CYP3A43 were associated with prostate cancer, are not in linkage equilibrium, and are both involved in testosterone metabolism, suggest that both CYP3A4*1B and CYP3A43*3 may influence the probability of having prostate cancer and disease severity. 60|Tenosynovial giant cell tumor (TSGCT) is a disease of disputed etiology and pathogenesis. Some investigations indicate a neoplastic origin of the tumors; others indicate that they are polyclonal and inflammatory. The cytogenetic and molecular genetic features of TSGCTs are largely unknown, as only some 20 localized and 30 diffuse tumors with cytogenetic aberrations have been reported. The most common karyotypic aberrations have been trisomy for chromosomes 5 and 7 and translocations involving chromosomal area 1p11-13. We decided to screen the genomes of TSGCTs by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) to perform interphase fluorescence in situ hybridization (IP-FISH), looking for numerical aberrations of chromosomes 1, 5, and 7, and to analyze the tumors for microsatellite instability. Except for two diffuse TSGCTs that came fresh to us, and which, by karyotyping, exhibited t(1;22)(p13;q12) and a t(1;1)(q21;p11) and +7, respectively, all studies had to be performed on formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded material. DNA was extracted from 51 localized and nine diffuse TSGCTs. CGH was successful for 24 tumors, but none of them showed copy number changes. The IP-FISH studies showed trisomy 7 in 56% of the tumors (15/27), whereas chromosomes 1 and 5 seemed to be disomic in all TSGCTs. All informative tumors were wild-type by microsatellite instability analysis. 61|Lamina-associated polypeptide (LAP) 2alpha is a LEM (lamina-associated polypeptide emerin MAN1) family protein associated with nucleoplasmic A-type lamins and chromatin. Using live cell imaging and fluorescence microscopy we demonstrate that LAP2alpha was mostly cytoplasmic in metaphase and associated with telomeres in anaphase. Telomeric LAP2alpha clusters grew in size, formed 'core' structures on chromatin adjacent to the spindle in telophase, and translocated to the nucleoplasm in G1 phase. A subfraction of lamin C and emerin followed LAP2alpha to the core region early on, whereas LAP2beta, lamin B receptor and lamin B initially bound to more peripheral regions of chromatin, before they spread to core structures with different kinetics. Furthermore, the DNA-crosslinking protein barrier-to-autointegration factor (BAF) bound to LAP2alpha in vitro and in mitotic extracts, and subfractions of BAF relocalized to core structures with LAP2alpha. We propose that LAP2alpha and a subfraction of BAF form defined complexes in chromatin core regions and may be involved in chromatin reorganization during early stages of nuclear assembly. 62|Haplotypes have played a major role in the study of highly-penetrant single-gene disorders, and recent evidence that the human genome has hot-spots and cold-spots for recombination have suggested that haplotype-based methods may play a key role in the study of common complex traits. This report reviews the motivation of using haplotypes for the study of the genetic basis of human traits, ranging from biologic function, to statistical power advantages of haplotypes, to linkage disequilibrium fine-mapping. Recent developments of regression models for haplotype analyses are reviewed, offering a synthesis of current methods, as well as their limitations and areas that require further research. Regression models provide significant advantages, such as the ability to control for non-genetic covariates, the effects of the haplotypes can be modeled, step-wise selection can be used to screen for a subset of markers that explain most of the association, haplotype x environment interactions can be evaluated, and regression diagnostics are well developed. Despite these strengths, the current regression methods tend to lack the sophisticated population genetic perspectives offered by coalescent and other similar approaches. Future work that links regression methods with population genetic models may prove beneficial. 63|The observation that transcriptionally active genes generally replicate early in S phase and observations of the interaction between transcription factors and replication proteins support the thesis that promoter elements may have a role in DNA replication. To test the relationship between transcription and replication we constructed HeLa cell lines in which inducible green fluorescent protein (GFP)-encoding genes replaced the proximal approximately 820-bp promoter region of the c-myc gene. Without the presence of an inducer, basal expression occurred from the GFP gene in either orientation and origin activity was restored to the mutant c-myc replicator. In contrast, replication initiation was repressed upon induction of transcription. When basal or induced transcription complexes were slowed by the presence of alpha-amanitin, origin activity depended on the orientation of the transcription unit. To test mechanistically whether basal transcription or transcription factor binding was sufficient for replication rescue by the uninduced GFP genes, a GAL4p binding cassette was used to replace all regulatory sequences within approximately 1,400 bp 5' to the c-myc gene. In these cells, expression of a CREB-GAL4 fusion protein restored replication origin activity. These results suggest that transcription factor binding can enhance replication origin activity and that high levels of expression or the persistence of transcription complexes can repress it. 64|The population genetic data of 18 X-chromosomal short tandem repeat (STR) markers DXS6807, DXS8378, DXS9895, DXS9902, DXS6810, DXS7132, DXS981, DXS6800, DXS9898, DXS6789, DXS101, DXS6797, GATA172D05, GATA165B12, HPRTB, GATA31E08, DXS8377, and DXS7423 were analyzed in samples of unrelated 220 males and 181 females from Korean population. The exact test for genotype distribution of the markers showed no significant deviation from the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Allele frequencies between male and female samples were not significantly different in all examined markers. All examined males and females showed different hemizygotic haplotype and combined genotypes, respectively. Four cases of mutation were found in GATA172D05, GATA31E08, DXS7132, and HPRTB from the analysis of 95 father-child-mother trios. Details of X chromosomal STRs in Koreans would be useful in paternity tests and forensic purposes as well as whole X-chromosomal mapping studies. 65|Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic, autoimmune disorder influenced by multiple genetic and environmental factors. Linkage of SLE to chromosome 16q12-13 (LOD score=3.85) was first identified in pedigrees collected at the University of Minnesota, and has been replicated in several independent SLE collections. We performed fine mapping using microsatellites to further refine the susceptibility region(s), and the best evidence for linkage was identified at marker D16S3396 (LOD=2.28, P=0.0006). Evidence of association was suggested in the analysis of all families (D16S3094, P=0.0516) and improved to the level of significance (P=0.0106) when only the Caucasian families were analyzed. Subsets of pedigrees were then selected on the basis of clinical manifestations, and these subsets showed evidence for association with several markers: GATA143D05 (renal, P=0.0064), D16S3035 (renal, P=0.0418), D16S3117 (renal, P=0.0366), D16S3071 (malar rash, P=0.03638; neuropsychiatric, P=0.0349; oral ulcers, P=0.0459), D16S3094 (hematologic, P=0.0226), and D16S3089 (arthritis, P=0.0141). Together, these data provide further evidence that an important susceptibility gene(s) for SLE is located at 16q12. 66|Hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT) or Rendu-Osler-Weber disease is an autosomal dominant disorder characterized by an aberrant vascular development. The resulting vascular lesions range from smaller mucocutaneous telangiectases to large visceral arteriovenous malformations, especially in the skin, lung, gastrointestinal tract and the brain. Mutations in the genes encoding endoglin (ENG, chromosome 9q34) and activin A receptor type-like kinase 1 (ALK-1, also named ACVRL1, chromosome 12q13) are associated with HHT1 and HHT2, respectively. We report here on the genetic and molecular heterogeneity found in the HHT population in the Netherlands. Probands of 104 apparently unrelated families were studied and we performed sequence analysis on both the ENG gene and ALK-1 gene. In most of the probands, we found a mutation in one of the two genes: 53% in the ENG gene and 40% in the ALK-1 gene. In 7% of the families no ENG or ALK1 mutation was found. The mutations detected were deletions, insertions, nonsense, missense and splice site mutations. The majority were novel mutations. 67|We show that common heterochromatin antigenic protein markers [HP1alpha, -beta, -gamma and mono-, di-, and trimethylated histone H3 lysine 9 (H3K9)], although present in human blood progenitor CD34+ cells, differentiated lymphocytes, and monocytes, are absent in neutrophil granulocytes and to large extent, in eosinophils. Monomethylated and in particular, dimethylated H3K9 are present to variable degrees in the granulocytes of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients, without being accompanied by HP1 proteins. In patients with an acute phase of CML and in acute myeloid leukemia patients, strong methylation of H3K9 and all isoforms of HP1 are detected. In chronic forms of CML, no strong correlations among the level of histone methylation, disease progression, and modality of treatment were observed. Histone methylation was found even in "cured" patients without Philadelphia chromosome (Ph) resulting from +(9;22)(q34;q11) BCR/ABL translocation, suggesting an incomplete process of developmentally regulated chromatin remodeling in the granulocytes of these patients. Similarly, reprogramming of leukemia HL-60 cells to terminal differentiation by retinoic acid does not eliminate H3K9 methylation and the presence of HP1 isoforms from differentiated granulocytes. Thus, our study shows for the first time that histone H3 methylation may be changed dramatically during normal cell differentiation. The residual histone H3 methylation in myeloid leukemia cells suggests an incomplete chromatin condensation that may be linked to the leukemia cell proliferation and may be important for the prognosis of disease treatment and relapse. 68|Defects in kinetochore proteins often lead to aneuploidy and cancer. Mis12-Mtw1 is a conserved, essential kinetochore protein family. Here, we show that a Mis12 core complex exists in Schizosaccharomyces pombe and human cells. Nine polypeptides bind to human hMis12; two of these, HEC1 and Zwint-1, are authentic kinetochore proteins. Four other human proteins of unknown function (c20orf172, DC8, PMF1 and KIAA1570) correspond to yeast Mis12-Mtw1 complex components and are shown to be required for chromosome segregation in HeLa cells using RNA interference (RNAi). Surprisingly, hMis12 also forms a stable complex with the centromeric heterochromatin components HP1alpha and HP1gamma. Double HP1 RNAi abolishes kinetochore localization of hMis12 and DC8. Therefore, centromeric HP1 may be the base to anchor the hMis12 core complex that is enriched with coiled coils and extends to outer Zwint-1 during mitosis. 69|Studies of mouse models for multistage carcinogenesis have led to the identification of a susceptibility locus for skin tumor development (Skts9) in the proximal region of mouse chromosome 16. This chromosome region shows a loss of heterozygosity or an allelic imbalance in mouse skin and pancreatic islet carcinoma, and has been associated with angiogenesis. The microsatellite marker D16Mit2, which has the strongest linkage to skin tumor susceptibility, was used to screen a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library, leading to the identification of the histidine-rich glycoprotein (Hrg) and Fetuin-B as the most tightly linked genes. These genes are members of a cystatin-like superfamily that includes the neighboring genes Kng and Ahsg/Fetuin. Overexpression of Fetuin-B in skin squamous carcinoma cells led to suppression of tumor growth in nude mice. The neighboring genes Kng and Ahsg also have potential roles in angiogenesis and (or) tumor development, and several genes in this locus may be candidates for the Skts9 gene. 70|When added for a short period (2-4 h) to cells, the kinase inhibitor staurosporine (STS), can trigger double strand breaks, the formation of nuclear foci containing phosphorylated H2AX, Chk2, and p53, a decrease in transcription, and a minor degree of peripheral chromatin condensation. This "preapoptotic chromatin condensation" (PACC) occurs before mitochondrial membrane permeabilization (MMP) and caspase activation become detectable and is not inhibited by Z-VAD-fmk or Bcl-2. PACC is followed by classical apoptosis, when cells are cultured overnight, even when STS is removed from the system. After overnight incubation, STS-pretreated cells manifest mitochondrial cytochrome c release, caspase activation, phosphatidylserine exposure, and apoptotic DNA fragmentation. Caspase or MMP inhibitors did not influence the advent of PACC yet did suppress the evolution of PACC toward apoptosis. Importantly, two unrelated MMP inhibitors (viral mitochondrial inhibitor of apoptosis (vMIA) from cytomegalovirus and mitochondrion-targeted Bcl-2) had a larger range of effects than the pan-caspase inhibitor Z-VAD-fmk. Caspase inhibition simply prevented the transition from PACC to apoptosis yet did not reverse PACC and did not restore transcription. In contrast, Bcl-2 and vMIA allowed for the repair of the DNA lesions, correlating with the reestablishment of active transcription. PACC could also be induced by a gross perturbation of RNA synthesis or primary DNA damage. Again, inhibition of MMP (but not that of caspases) reversed PACC induced by these stimuli. In synthesis, our data reveal the unexpected capacity of STS to induce DNA lesions and suggest qualitative differences in the cytoprotective and DNA repair-inducing potential of different apoptosis inhibitors. 71|To identify the chromosomal aberrations associated with the progression of liver cancer, we applied expression imbalance map analysis to gene expression data from 31 hepatocellular carcinomas and 19 noncancerous tissues. Expression imbalance map analysis, which detects mRNA expression imbalance correlated with chromosomal regions, showed that expression gains of 1q21-23 (74%), 8q13-21 (48%), 12q23-24 (41%), 17q12-21(48%), 17q25 (25%), and 20q11 (22%) and losses of 4q13 (48%), 8p12-21 (32%), 13q14 (32%), and 17p13 (29%) were significantly associated with hepatocellular carcinoma. Most regions with altered expression identified by expression imbalance map were also identified in previous reports using comparative genomic hybridization. We demonstrated chromosomal copy number gain in 1q21-23 and loss in 17p13 by genomic quantitative PCR, suggesting that gene expression profiles reflect chromosomal alterations. Furthermore, expression imbalance map analysis revealed that more poorly differentiated hepatocellular carcinoma contain more chromosomal alterations, which are accumulated in a stepwise manner in the course of hepatocellular carcinoma progression: expression imbalance of 1q, 8p, 8q, and 17p occur as early events in hepatocarcinogenesis, and 12q, 17q25 and 20q occur as later events. In particular, expression gain of 17q12-21 and loss of 4q were seen to accumulate constantly through the dedifferentiation process. Our data suggest that gene expression profiles are subject to chromosomal bias and that expression imbalance map can correlate gene expression to gene loci with high resolution and sensitivity. 72|Alginate, an exopolysaccharide produced by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, provides the bacterium with a selective advantage that makes it difficult to eradicate from the lungs of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. Previous studies identified a gene, algX, within the alginate biosynthetic gene cluster on the P. aeruginosa chromosome. By probing cell fractions with anti-AlgX antibodies in a Western blot, AlgX was localized within the periplasm. Consistent with these results is the presence of a 26-amino-acid signal sequence. To examine the requirement for AlgX in alginate biosynthesis, part of algX in P. aeruginosa strain FRD1::pJLS3 was replaced with a nonpolar gentamicin resistance cassette. The resulting algXDelta::Gm mutant was verified by PCR and Western blot analysis and was phenotypically nonmucoid (non-alginate producing). The algXDelta::Gm mutant was restored to the mucoid phenotype with wild-type P. aeruginosa algX provided on a plasmid. The algXDelta::Gm mutant was found to secrete dialyzable oligouronic acids of various lengths. Mass spectroscopy and Dionex chromatography indicated that the dialyzable uronic acids are mainly mannuronic acid dimers resulting from alginate lyase (AlgL) degradation of polymannuronic acid. These studies suggest that AlgX is part of a protein scaffold that surrounds and protects newly formed polymers from AlgL degradation as they are transported within the periplasm for further modification and eventual transport out of the cell. 73|Trisomy 21 is the most common chromosomal aberration in live births. In this study we employed human chromosome 21-specific short tandem repeat (STR) DNA markers to determine the numbers of chromosome 21 present in fetal cells. Forty amniotic fluid samples from pregnancies complicated with fetal Down syndrome and 98 samples from euploid pregnancies were analyzed for D21S11 and interferon-alpha receptor (IFNAR) gene intervening sequence. Fluorescent dye-labeled primers were used in PCR amplification of these 2 markers. The PCR amplicon was analyzed with an automatic DNA sequence analyzer. The results showed that 35 of 40 fetal Down syndrome samples analyzed for IFNAR showed 3 distinct peaks, while 24 of 30 cases analyzed for D21S11 showed 3 distinct peaks. Two Down syndrome samples showed two uneven peaks. By analyzing 98 euploid pregnancies as controls, the ratios of area under the peaks were determined to be 1.31 +/- 0.22 and 1.96 +/- 0.18 (mean +/- SD) for the euploid pregnancies and pregnancies complicated by fetal Down syndrome with 2 peaks, respectively. Our data showed that altogether 39 of 40 (97.5%) Down syndrome cases were correctly identified based on either the 3-peak pattern in one or more of the DNA markers or the relative peak area ratio calculation. In conclusion, polymorphic STR DNA markers are useful for determining the numbers of chromosome 21 in fetal cells. The high sensitivity and automation of the procedures suggest a good prospect for use of this method in prenatal detection of fetal Down syndrome. However, this is a preliminary investigation and a large-scale study is necessary to validate the clinical application of this protocol. 74|Exo1 was first isolated as a 5' --> 3' exonuclease activity induced during meiosis in fission yeast and since that time has been implicated in a multitude of eukaryotic DNA metabolic pathways that include DNA repair, recombination, replication, and telomere integrity. Involvement in multiple pathways affecting genomic stability makes EXO1 a logical target for mutation during oncogenesis. Here, we review studies in several experimental systems that shed light on the role of Exo1 in these DNA transaction pathways, particularly those that may relate to oncogenesis. 75|Lung carcinomas are cytogenetically highly complex. In spite of this, patterns of recurrent chromosome aberrations have emerged. Apart from the frequent loss of 3p, losses of 4q, 5q, 8p, 9p, 10q, 13q, and 17p are common and gains often include 1q, 3q, 5p, and 8q. In the present study, we retrieved all aberrant lung carcinoma karyotypes, in total 432 cases, from the Mitelman Database of Chromosome Aberrations in Cancer and identified the most frequent imbalances. Each case was then classified with respect to the presence or absence of these imbalances and the data were statistically analyzed by means of principal component analysis, multidimensional scaling, and hierarchical cluster analysis. The analyses suggest that lung cancer develops through three pathways, initiated by +7, 3p-, and +12, respectively, and that the 3p- pathway is dominated by losses and the +12 pathway by gains. Gain of chromosome 7 was shown to be both important in the 3p- pathway and also forming a group of tumors containing +7 and +20 (with few additional changes). The distribution of the number of imbalances per tumor indicated that the karyotypic evolution might pass through three different phases. Phase I is characterized by tumors with few changes and by well-separated 3p- and +12 pathways. Phase II cases have an increased number of imbalances and exhibit less distinct 3p- and +12 pathways. Phase III tumors are polyploid and highly complex. No marked differences between the karyotypic profiles were found among morphologic subtypes, suggesting that lung cancer morphology is independent of the particular cytogenetic pathway operating in the tumor cells. 76|This article reviews published data on familial recurrent hydatidiform mole with particular reference to the genetic basis of this condition, the likely outcome of subsequent pregnancies in affected women and the risk of persistent trophoblastic disease following molar pregnancies in these families. Familial recurrent hydatidiform mole is characterized by recurrent complete hydatidiform moles of biparental, rather than the more usual androgenetic, origin. Although the specific gene defect in these families has not been identified, genetic mapping has shown that in most families the gene responsible is located in a 1.1 Mb region on chromosome 19q13.4. Mutations in this gene result in dysregulation of imprinting in the female germ line with abnormal development of both embryonic and extraembryonic tissue. Subsequent pregnancies in women diagnosed with this condition are likely to be complete hydatidiform moles. In 152 pregnancies in affected women, 113 (74%) were complete hydatidiform moles, 26 (17%) were miscarriages, 6 (4%) were partial hydatidiform moles, and 7 (5%) were normal pregnancies. Molar pregnancies in women with familial recurrent hydatidiform mole have a risk of progressing to persistent trophoblastic disease similar to that of androgenetic complete hydatidiform mole. 77|OBJECTIVES: To develop a reliable and specific technique for rapid prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. METHODS: High throughput real-time PCR technique was used to measure the DSCR3 gene dosage of genomic DNAs from uncultured amniocytes of fetuses, lymphocytes of trisomy 21 syndrome patients, and normal people, compared to conventional cytogenetic karyotype analysis. RESULTS: The DSCR3/GAPDH ratio of uncultured amniocytes in trisomy 21 syndrome fetuses to normal fetuses was 1.69 +/- 0.17 to 1.06 +/- 0.14, respectively (p < 0.001); and the DSCR3/GAPDH ratio of lymphocytes in trisomy 21 syndrome children to normal people was 1.67 +/- 0.13 to 0.99 +/- 0.10, respectively (p < 0.001). Real-time PCR technique effectively differentiates the normal fetuses from the trisomy 21 syndrome fetuses; therefore, compared to the results of the conventional cytogenetic karyotype analysis, the DSCR3/GAPDH ratios of trisomy 21 syndrome fetuses are significantly higher than those of normal fetuses. CONCLUSION: Because the DSCR3/GAPDH ratio of trisomy 21 syndrome fetuses is significantly higher than that of normal fetuses, the genomic DNA real-time PCR technique may be a reliable and specific method for the rapid prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome. 78|The aim of this study was to define the endemic clones of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) among strains collected between September, 2001, and February, 2003, at the regional hospital of Nový Jicín, Czech Republic. The isolates were characterized by susceptibility tests, HindIII ribotyping, and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. Representatives of each clonal type were analyzed by multilocus sequence typing and staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec (SCCmec) typing. The prevalence of the most important macrolide (ermA, ermB, ermC, and msrA) and aminoglycoside (aac6'-aph2", aph3', and ant4') resistance genes was evaluated as well. Our results document the existence of two international MRSA clones: (1) the Iberian clone (ST247:SCCmec IA:PFGE A:ribotype H2), endemic in the hospital and associated to a single multiresistant phenotype; and (2) clone EMRSA-15 (ST22:SCCmec IV:PFGE H-ribotype H7), appearing in the beginning of 2002 and associated with three phenotypes. These two clones could be distinguished by antibiogram, distribution of macrolide and aminoglycoside resistance genes (ermA, aac6'-aph2", ant4' versus ermC and msrA in a few isolates), production of beta-lactamase, and presence of enterotoxin A (in the Iberian clone). 79|Tumors arise from normal cells through the acquisition of multiple genetic alterations that endow cancer cells with the phenotypes associated with neoplasia. Although we still lack a complete understanding of the specific complement of mutations that together program the behavior of any particular cancer, several lines of evidence indicate that many of these alterations perturb regulatory networks critical for cell proliferation, growth, and survival. As such, cancer cells maintain a precarious balance among unfettered proliferation, genomic instability, cell cycle arrest, and apoptosis. This year's Beatson International Cancer Conference focused on recent advances in our understanding of the pathways that regulate senescence, apoptosis, and cancer. 80|The genome of Vibrio cholerae consists of two circular chromosomes of different sizes. Here, a comparative analysis of the replication origins of the large chromosomes (oriCIvc) of classical and El Torbio types of the pathogen is reported. Extensive nucleotide sequence analyses revealed that the oriCIvc region has six DnaA boxes instead of the five found in Escherichia coli oriC. The additional DnaA box, designated Rv, was unique in V. cholerae as well as in other members of the family Vibrionaceae. However, Rv was not found to be essential for the autonomous replication function of the 307-bp oriCIvc minimal region. In contrast to El Tor and the recently evolved V. cholerae 0139 strains, the oriCIvc region of the classical biotype showed only a single base transition (T-->G) in a highly conserved AT-rich 13-mer R repeat region. From the minichromosome copy number and its transformational efficiency analyses, it appears that the single base substitution in the oriCIvc of the classical biotype has a significant effect on its replication initiation. 81|Tau gene mutations with insoluble Tau neuropathology have been identified in pedigrees with frontotemporal dementia with parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17 (FTDP-17). Other neurodegenerative diseases, including progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) and corticobasal degeneration (CBD), are also characterised by insoluble Tau neuropathology. This study sought to determine the nature and frequency of tau gene mutations in an affected proband cohort of patients within this spectrum of neurodegenerative diseases. Sixty-four individuals with clinical features consistent with FTD and other tauopathies were referred over a three year period. There was neuropathological confirmation of disease in 30%. Individuals were screened for mutations in the coding region and flanking intronic regions of the tau gene by direct sequencing of PCR products. Four confirmed tau gene mutations were identified representing 6.3 % for the total affected proband cohort. Tau gene mutations were found in three of twelve (25%) of the cases with a family history of dominantly inherited frontotemporal dementia, but in only one of 25 cases without a family history (4 %). Although tauopathies have been considered to result from genetic defects, screening for tau gene mutations in sporadic cases is not likely to identify pathogenic mutations. 82|Turner syndrome, a genetic disorder that results from the complete or partial absence of an X chromosome in females, has been associated with specific impairment in visuospatial cognition. Previous studies have demonstrated a relationship between parietal lobe abnormalities and visuospatial deficits in Turner syndrome. We used high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging to measure parietal lobe subdivisions in 14 participants with Turner syndrome (mean age 13 years 5 months, SD 5 years) and 14 age-matched controls (mean age 13 years 5 months, SD 4 years 7 months) to localize neuroanatomical variations more closely. Scans were acquired and analyzed for 14 females with Turner syndrome. Analyses of variance were used to investigate differences in regional parietal lobes. Females with Turner syndrome showed a bilateral parietal lobe reduction, specifically in the superior parietal and postcentral gyri. Full-scale IQ scores were significantly positively correlated with postcentral tissue volume in the Turner syndrome group. Structural differences in the parietal lobe are localized specifically to the anterior and superior parietal lobe and might be related to the visuospatial and visuomotor deficits associated with Turner syndrome. 83|PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To summarize recent findings in the study of the 'hereditary stomatocytoses and allied disorders', diseases in which the red cell membrane leaks Na and K, disturbing the osmotic homeostasis of the cell. RECENT FINDINGS: Recent work has emphasized the diversity of these conditions, especially evident in the variations in temperature dependence of the cation leak. The association between the dehydrated, xerocytic form that maps to chromosome 16, with perinatal ascites is confirmed. Two cases that may represent a new hematoneurologic syndrome have been recognized. SUMMARY: These leaky-membrane diseases fall into three main categories. The 'dehydrated' or xerocytic form maps to chromosome 16 and shows a minimal leak, and can show an excess of phosphatidylcholine in the membrane. Some of these xerocytic cases show a syndrome of self-limiting perinatal ascites of unknown cause. A second group shows very variable temperature dependence in the cation leak. The most severe 'overhydrated' form shows very leaky cells and the 32 kD stomatin protein is missing, although the gene is not mutated. This deficiency seems to be the result of a trafficking problem. The protein is associated with cholesterol and sphingomyelin-rich 'rafts' and may be some kind of partner protein for a membrane-bound proteolytic system. 84|Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) represents the most common cause of anovulatory infertility and affects 5-10% of women of reproductive age. The etiology of PCOS is still unknown. The current study is the first to describe consistent differences in gene expression profiles in human ovaries comparing PCOS patients vs. healthy normoovulatory individuals. The microarray analysis of PCOS vs. normal ovaries identifies dysregulated expression of genes encoding components of several biological pathways or systems such as Wnt signaling, extracellular matrix components, and immunological factors. Resulting data may provide novel clues for ovarian dysfunction in PCOS. Intriguingly, the gene expression profiles of ovaries from (long-term) androgen-treated female-to-male transsexuals (TSX) show considerable overlap with PCOS. This observation provides supportive evidence that androgens play a key role in the pathogenesis of PCOS. Presented data may contribute to a better understanding of dysregulated pathways in PCOS, which might ultimately reveal novel leads for therapeutic intervention. 85|A 38-year-old woman had noticed sclerodactylia and Raynaud's phenomenon 10 months before consultation. She was diagnosed as having systemic sclerosis (SSc) based on the skin sclerosis of her arms, chest, and face. Antinuclear antibody (ANA) level was 1:1280 with a speckled pattern, but specific autoantibodies were negative. Following the treatment with oral prednisolone and D-penicillamine, her skin sclerosis gradually improved. Three months after initiation of prednisolone, she presented Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. About 1 year after the first admission, the pattern of indirect immunofluorescence staining changed from the speckled pattern to the discrete speckled pattern, and simultaneously anticentromere antibody (ACA) was detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Her skin sclerosis rapidly and remarkably improved after appearance of ACA. It is generally considered that once certain SSc-specific autoantibody occurs, it does not disappear and change into other specificity of autoantibody thereafter. This case suggests that the presence of ACA closely correlates with clinical features and also suggests that clinical features may change during the clinical course with the appearance of another specific ANA. This case is very rare because such a case was not reported previously. 86|The yeast SWI/SNF ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complex was first identified and characterized over 10 years ago (F. Winston and M. Carlson. 1992. Trends Genet. 8: 387-391.) Since then, the number of distinct ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complexes and the variety of roles they play in nuclear processes have become dizzying (J.A. Martens and F. Winston. 2003. Curr. Opin. Genet. Dev. 13: 136-142; A. Vacquero et al. 2003. Sci. Aging Knowledge Environ. 2003: RE4)--and that does not even include the companion suite of histone modifying enzymes, which exhibit a comparable diversity in both number of complexes and variety of functions (M.J. Carrozza et al. 2003. Trends Genet. 19: 321-329; W. Fischle et al. 2003. Curr. Opin. Cell Biol. 15: 172-183; M. Iizuka and M.M. Smith. 2003. Curr. Opin. Genet. Dev. 13: 1529-1539). This vast complexity is hardly surprising, given that all nuclear processes that involve DNA--transcription, replication, repair, recombination, sister chromatid cohesion, etc.--must all occur in the context of chromatin. The SWI/SNF-related ATP-dependent remodelers are divided into a number of subfamilies, all related by the SWI2/SNF2 ATPase at their catalytic core. In nearly every species where researchers have looked for them, one or more members of each subfamily have been identified. Even the budding yeast, with its comparatively small genome, contains eight different chromatin remodelers in five different subfamilies. This review will focus on just one subfamily, the Imitation Switch (ISWI) family, which is proving to be one of the most diverse groups of chromatin remodelers in both form and function. 87|Comparative genomic hybridization to bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC)-arrays (array-CGH) is a highly efficient technique, allowing the simultaneous measurement of genomic DNA copy number at hundreds or thousands of loci, and the reliable detection of local one-copy-level variations. We report a genome-wide amplification method allowing the same measurement sensitivity, using 1 ng of starting genomic DNA, instead of the classical 1 microg usually necessary. Using a discrete series of DNA fragments, we defined the parameters adapted to the most faithful ligation-mediated PCR amplification and the limits of the technique. The optimized protocol allows a 3000-fold DNA amplification, retaining the quantitative characteristics of the initial genome. Validation of the amplification procedure, using DNA from 10 tumour cell lines hybridized to BAC-arrays of 1500 spots, showed almost perfectly superimposed ratios for the non-amplified and amplified DNAs. Correlation coefficients of 0.96 and 0.99 were observed for regions of low-copy-level variations and all regions, respectively (including in vivo amplified oncogenes). Finally, labelling DNA using two nucleotides bearing the same fluorophore led to a significant increase in reproducibility and to the correct detection of one-copy gain or loss in >90% of the analysed data, even for pseudotriploid tumour genomes. 88|Ewing's sarcoma was diagnosed in three men, one aged 22 and two aged 30. The disease was diagnosed by biopsy and chromosome investigations (t(11;22)-translocation). In the youngest patient with localised disease, supplementary radiotherapy was withheld in view of the good results of induction chemotherapy, surgery and consolidation chemotherapy. However, four months later, there was a localised recurrence, again followed by induction chemotherapy, chemotherapy at high dosage, stem cell transplantation, radiotherapy and finally surgical intervention, after which a complete remission was achieved. The 30-year-old man with localised disease was given induction chemotherapy, surgery, consolidation chemotherapy and radiotherapy; 14 months after the diagnosis he was in good condition. The other 30-year-old man had metastases in TXII and both lungs. Despite intensive therapy he died 8 months after diagnosis. Ewing's sarcoma is a musculoskeletal malignancy that occurs in children and adolescents but also in young adults. It generally manifests itself as a painful swelling originating in bone or soft tissue. There are often accompanying symptoms such as weight loss and fever. In 20-25% of cases there are already metastases (to the lungs, bone and bone marrow) by the time of diagnosis. The diagnosis and treatment of this rare, therapy-sensitive disease should take place in a study setting and in co-operation with a multidisciplinary sarcoma working group. 89|The incidence of cutaneous malignant melanomas is growing faster than that of any other cancer and therefore posing a major heath threat worldwide. In melanocytic skin tumours, the feasibility of correlating a specific pathological stage with a corresponding genetic alteration provides a remarkable opportunity to study the multistep tumorigenesis model. This multistep melanoma tumorigenesis is best described as a continuum of transformation of the melanocytes, melanocytic dysplasia, and melanoma formation. These steps involve genotypic alterations including loss of tumour suppressor genes, microsatellite instability, and alterations of the mismatch repair system. This review seeks to examine melanoma tumorigenesis based on these genetic changes. 90|Gene amplifications have been observed in many different tumor cells, and many of these changes are related to tumor pathogenesis. Comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) using metaphase chromosomes can detect changes in chromosome copy number with a resolution of 10-20 Mb. Current advances in CGH analysis in a microarray format allow us to refine such changes down to the gene level. We applied microarray technology to detect novel gene amplification in a malignant mixed tumor of salivary gland. Besides detecting previously known gene amplifications (MDM2 and MYC), we identified four other highly amplified genes located at 8q11.2 approximately q13: MGC2177, PLAG1, PSMC6P, and LYN. The amplification was further validated with real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction. 91|Although length of the telomeric DNA tract varies widely across evolution, a species-specific set point is established and maintained by unknown mechanisms. To investigate how telomere length is controlled in Arabidopsis thaliana, we analyzed bulk telomere length in 14 wild-type accessions. We found that telomere tracts in Arabidopsis are fairly uniformly distributed throughout a size range of 2 to 9 kb. Unexpectedly, telomeres in plants of the Wassilewskija ecotype displayed a bimodal size distribution, with some individuals harboring telomeres of 2 to 5 kb and others telomeres of 4 to 9 kb. F1 and F2 progeny of a cross between long and short telomere parents had intermediate telomeres, implying that telomere length in Arabidopsis is not controlled by a single genetic factor. We provide evidence that although global telomere length is strictly regulated within an ecotype-specific range, telomere tracts on individual chromosome ends do not occupy a predetermined length territory. We also demonstrate that individual telomere tracts on homologous chromosomes are coordinately regulated throughout development and that telomerase acts preferentially on the shortest telomeres. We propose that an optimal size for telomere tracts is established and maintained for each Arabidopsis ecotype. 92|Oesophageal cancer is one of the ten leading causes of cancer mortality worldwide. Earlier loss of heterozygosity (or allelic imbalance) studies have implicated regions on chromosomes 3p, 5q, 9p, 13q, 17p, 17q, and 18q in the development of sporadic oesophageal cancer and recent data have linked the familial tylosis with oesophageal cancer (TOC) gene-containing region on chromosome 17q25 with this cancer. We have studied allelic imbalance (AI) at microsatellite markers both closely linked to and distant from the TOC gene locus in 60 sporadic squamous cell oesophageal cancers from Iran and have investigated the most likely candidate gene by mutation analysis in these tumours. Forty-four out of these 60 samples (73%) show allelic imbalance at one or more loci within or adjacent to the TOC minimal region, while the highest incidence of AI was observed at the D17S2244 and D17S2246 loci (almost 70% AI in informative cases), correlating with the TOC minimal region. Analysis of the coding regions of a candidate gene in these tumours failed to show an equivalently high incidence of mutation, although two mutations and one polymorphism were observed. These data support and extend previous observations that the TOC region of chromosome 17q25 may be involved in the aetiology of the sporadic form of oesophageal cancer from a number of different geographical populations and suggest that the causative gene may be epigenetically silenced rather than mutated. 93|Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on chromosome arm 7q31 is found in many prostate tumors. Such alterations are generally associated with inactivation of tumor suppressor genes. It has been shown previously that the main region of LOH at 7q31 spans the interval between the D7S486 and D7S2460 microsatellite loci, which contains several candidate tumor suppressor genes (TSG) such as TES, CAV2, CAV1, MET, CAPZA2, ST7 and WNT2. We tested 41 human sporadic prostate tumors for 7q31 LOH by using 5 polymorphic markers overlapping the critical region and used a real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay to study the expression of the 7 candidate TSGs located in this genomic region. We found that CAV1, CAV2, MET and TES mRNA expression was lower in prostate tumors than in normal prostate tissues. Our immunohistochemical results and previously published data on the compartmental expression of these messenger RNAs in stromal and epithelial cells suggest that TES is the best candidate tumor suppressor gene at 7q31. 94|Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the presence of autoantibodies against intracellular components, the formation of immune complexes, and inflammation in various organs, typically the skin and kidney glomeruli. The etiology of the disease is not well understood but is most likely the result of the interaction between genetic and environmental factors. In order to identify susceptibility loci for SLE, we have performed genome scans with microsatellite markers covering the whole genome in families from Argentina, Italy, and Europe. The results reveal a heterogeneous disease with different susceptibility loci in different family sets. We have found significant linkage to chromosome 17p12-q11 in the Argentine set of families. The maximum LOD score was given by marker D17S1294 in combination with D17S1293, when assuming a dominant inheritance model (Z = 3.88). We also analyzed a repeat in the promoter region of the NOS2A gene, a strong candidate gene in the region, but no association was found. The locus on chromosome 17 has previously been identified in genetic studies of multiple sclerosis families. Several other interesting regions were found at 1p35, 1q31, 3q26, 5p15, 11q23 and 19q13, confirming previously identified loci for SLE or other autoimmune diseases. 95|A series of 12 human gliomas was established as xenografts in nude mice and used to evaluate the relationship between histology, genetic parameters, and response to alkylating agents. Eight were high-grade oligodendroglial tumors, and four were glioblastoma. They were characterized for their genetic alterations, including those considered as "early" alterations, namely loss of chromosome 1 +/- loss of chromosome 19q, TP53 mutation, and those considered as "late" alterations, namely loss of chromosome 10, loss of chromosome 9p, EGFR genomic amplification, PTEN mutation, CDKN2A homozygous deletion, and telomerase reactivation. Chemosensitivity of xenografts to four alkylating agents, temozolomide (42 mg/kg, days 1-5, p.o.), 1,3-bis(2-chloroethyl)-1-nitrosourea (5 mg/kg, day 1, i.p.), Ifosfamide (90 mg/kg, days 1-3, i.p.), and carboplatin (66 mg/kg, day 1, i.p.) was tested by administration of drugs to tumor-bearing mice. Although each tumor presented an individual response pattern, glioblastoma had a lower chemosensitivity than oligodendrogliomas, and temozolomide was the most effective drug. Deletion of 1p +/- 19q was associated with higher chemosensitivity, whereas late molecular alterations, particularly EGFR amplification, were associated with chemoresistance. These results suggest that the combined use of histology and molecular markers should eventually be helpful selecting the most appropriate agents for treatment of malignant oligodendrogliomas and astrocytomas. 96|In addition to increased DNA-strand exchange, a cytogenetic feature of cells lacking the RecQ-like BLM helicase is a tendency for telomeres to associate. We also report additional cellular and biochemical evidence for the role of BLM in telomere maintenance. BLM co-localizes and complexes with the telomere repeat protein TRF2 in cells that employ the recombination-mediated mechanism of telomere lengthening known as ALT (alternative lengthening of telomeres). BLM co-localizes with TRF2 in foci actively synthesizing DNA during late S and G2/M; co-localization increases in late S and G2/M when ALT is thought to occur. Additionally, TRF1 and TRF2 interact directly with BLM and regulate BLM unwinding activity in vitro. Whereas TRF2 stimulates BLM unwinding of telomeric and non-telomeric substrates, TRF1 inhibits BLM unwinding of telomeric substrates only. Finally, TRF2 stimulates BLM unwinding with equimolar concentrations of TRF1, but not when TRF1 is added in molar excess. These data suggest a function for BLM in recombination-mediated telomere lengthening and support a model for the coordinated regulation of BLM activity at telomeres by TRF1 and TRF2. 97|OBJECTIVE: Loss of the fragile histidine triad (Fhit) protein has been documented in cervical cancer and dysplasia. The goal of this study was to confirm the utility of homozygous deletions, aberrant methylation, and immunohistochemical evaluations of FHIT as functionally relevant determinants of FHIT expression. METHODS: We studied matched DNA, RNA, and protein from nine early-passage cervical cancer cell lines. DNA markers spanning FHIT were used to examine the extent of homozygous deletions for each cell line. 5 CpG island methylation of FHIT was investigated by methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays. FHIT transcripts were characterized by reverse transcriptase (RT)-PCR. Western blot analysis and immunohistochemistry were performed to characterize Fhit protein expression. RESULTS: Homozygous deletions were found in six of nine cervical cancer cell lines, but only one had homozygous deletions involving an exon. All nine lines had both methylated and unmethylated alleles according to methylation-specific PCR. Loss of wild-type FHIT transcripts were found in five of nine lines. By western blot analysis, Fhit protein expression was lost in five of nine lines, producing an exact correlation with RT-PCR results. Immunohistochemical staining was concordant with Fhit protein expression by western blotting in eight of nine cell lines. CONCLUSION: A perfect correlation was found between FHIT mRNA expression and western blot analysis. Assays for Fhit protein expression and large FHIT homozygous deletions are representative biomarkers of Fhit expression. By contrast, the aberrant methylation assay is not concordant with FHIT gene expression, and we suggest caution in its use as a functionally relevant biomarker for cervical cancer. 98|Lipoblastoma is a tumor of adipose tissue that usually occurs in young children. Most lipoblastomas occur on the extremities, trunk, and head and neck, and most have rearrangements of the 8q region. We describe a lipoblastoma in a 12-month-old boy who presented with a rapidly enlarging scrotal mass. Electron microscopy revealed features consistent with immature adipocytes, and cytogenetic analysis revealed the following karyotype: 57,XY,+4,+6,+7,der(8)t(8;12) (q22;q13), +der(8)t(8;12) (q22;q13), +9,+10,+12,-16,+17,+der(18)t(8;18)(q22;q23),+19,+20. Interestingly, the breakpoint on chromosome 12 (q13) is the same as that seen in lipoblastomas. To our knowledge, this is the first reported case of such a complex karyotype in lipoblastoma and adds to the expanding list of karyotypic abnormalities seen in such tumors. 99|Linkage of body mass index (BMI) to a broad region of chromosome 7q22-35 has been reported in multiple studies. We previously published a multipoint LOD score of 4.9 at D7S1804 for BMI from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Family Heart Study. Leptin (LEP), the human homolog of the mouse obesity (ob) gene, is positioned near the linkage peak and is the most prominent candidate gene in this region. Interest in LEP as a susceptibility gene for human obesity has led to numerous linkage and association studies, but the results of these studies are still controversial. In the present study, we employed family-based tests of association with both a quantitative measure of BMI adjusted for age and sex and a dichotomously defined obesity trait. We genotyped 29 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) spanning 240 kb around the LEP gene in the 82 extended pedigrees with the strongest evidence for linkage. When the programs TRANSMIT and FBAT were used, a number of SNPs showed association in men but not women, for both the quantitative and qualitative trait definitions (P<.05). Five SNPs (H1328084, H1328083, H1328082, H1328081, and H1328080) positioned 2 kb beyond the previously defined promoter region showed strong association in single-marker and multiple-marker haplotype analysis. This five-marker haplotype (frequency 49% in this sample) is overtransmitted to obese offspring (P=.00005). All five of these SNPs are predicted to modify transcription-factor binding sites. This may indicate new functional variants in an extended promoter region of LEP. 100|Expression of human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) is regulated by the viral transcriptional activator Tax. Tax activates viral transcription through interaction with the cellular transcription factor CREB and the coactivators CBP/p300. In this study, we have analyzed the role of histone deacetylase 1 (HDAC1) on HTLV-1 gene expression from an integrated template. First we show that trichostatin A, an HDAC inhibitor, enhances Tax expression in HTLV-1-transformed cells. Second, using a cell line containing a single-copy HTLV-1 long terminal repeat, we demonstrate that overexpression of HDAC1 represses Tax transactivation. Furthermore, a chromatin immunoprecipitation assay allowed us to analyze the interaction of transcription factors, coactivators, and HDACs with the basal and activated HTLV-1 promoter. We demonstrate that HDAC1 is associated with the inactive, but not the Tax-transactivated, HTLV-1 promoter. In vitro and in vivo glutathione S-transferase-Tax pull-down and coimmunoprecipitation experiments demonstrated that there is a direct physical association between Tax and HDAC1. Importantly, biotinylated chromatin pull-down assays demonstrated that Tax inhibits and/or dissociates the binding of HDAC1 to the HTLV-1 promoter. Our results provide evidence that Tax interacts directly with HDAC1 and regulates binding of the repressor to the HTLV-1 promoter. 101|Telomeres, the ends of chromosomes, shorten with each cell division in human somatic cells, because of the end-replication problem, C-strand processing and oxidative damage. On the other hand, the reverse transcriptase telomerase can add back telomeric repeats at the telomere ends. It has been suggested that once telomeres have reached a critical length, cells cease proliferation, also known as senescence. Evidence is accumulating that telomere shortening and subsequent senescence might play a crucial role in life-threatening diseases. So far, mathematical models described telomere shortening as an autonomous process, where the loss per cell division does not depend on the telomere length itself. In this study, published measurements of telomere distributions in human fibroblasts and human endothelial cells were used to show that telomeres shorten in a length-dependent fashion. Thereafter, a mathematical model of telomere attrition was composed, in which a shortening factor and an autonomous loss were incorporated. It was assumed that the percentage of senescence was related to the percentage of telomeres below a critical length. The model was compared with published data of telomere length and senescence of human endothelial cells using the maximum likelihood method. This enabled the estimation of physiologically important parameters and confirmed the length-dependency of telomere shortening. 102|We hypothesized that keloids are composed of polyclonal fibroblasts and are not tumors derived from a single abnormal cell. That is, they are not monoclonal fibroblast neoplasms but rather are formed by intrinsically normal polyclonal fibroblasts that are responding to an abnormal extracellular signal.This hypothesis was tested using a polymerase chain reaction-based assay to examine X-chromosome inactivation and thereby determine clonality of keloid tissue. Six of 12 keloid samples analyzed were polyclonal. Three were genetically noninformative, and 3 were monoclonal.The presence of polyclonal specimens is consistent with our hypothesis and predicts that keloids result from intrinsically normal fibroblasts that are responding to an abnormal extracellular signal. This result can guide future genetic and molecular studies to identify this proposed abnormal regulatory signal, which we expect to be an important regulator of normal and diseased scarring. 103|Chromosome 9 is highly structurally polymorphic. It contains the largest autosomal block of heterochromatin, which is heteromorphic in 6-8% of humans, whereas pericentric inversions occur in more than 1% of the population. The finished euchromatic sequence of chromosome 9 comprises 109,044,351 base pairs and represents >99.6% of the region. Analysis of the sequence reveals many intra- and interchromosomal duplications, including segmental duplications adjacent to both the centromere and the large heterochromatic block. We have annotated 1,149 genes, including genes implicated in male-to-female sex reversal, cancer and neurodegenerative disease, and 426 pseudogenes. The chromosome contains the largest interferon gene cluster in the human genome. There is also a region of exceptionally high gene and G + C content including genes paralogous to those in the major histocompatibility complex. We have also detected recently duplicated genes that exhibit different rates of sequence divergence, presumably reflecting natural selection. 104|Genomic fingerprints of mutagenic agents would have wide applications in the field of cancer biology, epidemiology and prevention. The differential spectra of chromosomal aberrations induced by different clastogens suggest that ratios of specific aberrations can be exploited as biomarkers of carcinogen exposure. We have tested this hypothesis using the novel technique of multicolor banding in situ hybridization (mBAND) in human peripheral blood lymphocytes exposed in vitro to X rays, neutrons, heavy ions, or the restriction endonuclease AluI. In the heavy-ion-irradiated cells, we further analyzed aberrations in chromosome 5 using multicolor FISH (mFISH). Contrary to the expectations of biophysical models, our results do not support the use of the ratios of inter-/intrachromosomal exchanges or intra-/interarm intrachanges as fingerprints of exposure to densely ionizing radiation. However, our data point to measurable differences in the ratio of complex/simple interchanges after exposure to different clastogens. These data should be considered in current biophysical models of radiation action in living cells. 105|A compromised mitotic checkpoint, the primary mechanism for ensuring that each new cell receives one copy of every chromosome, has been implicated as a contributor to carcinogenesis. However, a checkpoint response is shown here to be essential for cell survival, including that of chromosomally instable colorectal cancer cells. Reducing the levels of the checkpoint proteins BubR1 or Mad2 in human cancer cells or inhibiting BubR1 kinase activity provokes apoptotic cell death within six divisions except when cytokinesis is also inhibited. Thus, suppression of mitotic checkpoint signaling is invariably lethal as the consequence of massive chromosome loss, findings that have implications for inhibiting proliferation of tumor cells. 106|Normal human diploid cells do not spontaneously immortalize in culture, but instead enter replicative senescence after a finite number of population doublings. Ablation of key checkpoint arrest or cancer-suppressor genes, through dominantly inherited germline mutation (p53+/-, Li-Fraumeni) or viral oncogene expression (SV40 large T, HPV16/18, and E6/E7) can lead to escape from senescence, additional doublings, and entrance into crisis phase, where immortal clones emerge at low frequency. In the vast majority of cases, telomerase is reactivated and telomeres are stabilized. Here we describe the spontaneous immortalization of clinically normal fibroblasts derived from colonic stroma of a familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) patient. The preimmortal (C26C) and the spontaneously immortalized derivative (C26Ci) cells are heterozygous for a characterized germline mutation in exon 15 of the adenomatous polyposis coli gene. Immortalization was accompanied by spontaneous reactivation of endogenous telomerase and establishment of telomeres at presenescent lengths. Normal checkpoint behavior is retained and a diploid karyotype is maintained. These cells provide a valuable new addition to the limited number of spontaneously immortalized human cell types, particularly fibroblast cells, and will be useful in experimentally determining the functional pathways in neoplastic development and in the identification of potential molecular targets for cancer chemoprevention. 107|Clear cell sarcoma of soft tissue (CCSST), also known as malignant melanoma of soft parts, represents a rare lesion of the musculoskeletal system usually affecting adolescents and young adults. CCSST is typified by a chromosomal t(12;22)(q13;q12) translocation resulting in a fusion between the Ewing sarcoma gene (EWSR1) and activating transcription factor 1 (ATF1), of which the activity in nontransformed cells is regulated by cyclic AMP. Our aim was to identify critical differentially expressed genes in CCSST tumor cells in comparison with other solid tumors affecting children and young adults to better understand signaling pathways regulating specific features of the development and progression of this tumor entity. We applied Affymetrix Human Genome U95Av2 oligonucleotide microarrays representing approximately 12,000 genes to generate the expression profiles of the CCSST cell lines GG-62, DTC-1, KAO, MST2, MST3, and Su-CC-S1 in comparison with 8 neuroblastoma, 7 Ewing tumor, and 6 osteosarcoma cell lines. Subsequent hierarchical clustering of microarray data clearly separated all four of the tumor types from each other and identified differentially expressed transcripts, which are characteristically up-regulated in CCSST. Statistical analysis revealed a group of 331 probe sets, representing approximately 300 significant (P < 0.001) differentially regulated genes, which clearly discriminated between the CCSST and other tumor samples. Besides genes that were already known to be highly expressed in CCSST, like S100A11 (S100 protein) or MITF (microphthalmia-associated transcription factor), this group shows an obvious portion of genes that are involved in cyclic AMP response or regulation, in pigmentation processes, or in neuronal structure and signaling. Comparison with other expression profile analyses on neuroectodermal childhood tumors confirms the high robustness of this strategy to characterize tumor entities based on their gene expression. We found the avian erythroblastic leukemia viral oncogene homologue 3 (ERBB3) to be one of the most dramatically up-regulated genes in CCSST. Quantitative real-time PCR and Northern blot analysis verified the mRNA abundance and confirmed the absence of the inhibitory transcript variant of this gene. The protein product of the member of the epidermal growth factor receptor family ERBB3 could be shown to be highly present in all of the CCSST cell lines investigated, as well as in 18 of 20 primary tumor biopsies. In conclusion, our data demonstrate new aspects of the phenotype and the biological behavior of CCSST and reveal ERBB3 to be a useful diagnostic marker. 108|Telomeric chromatin has peculiar features with respect to bulk chromatin, which are not fully clarified to date. Nucleosomal arrays, reconstituted on fragments of human telomeric DNA and on tandemly repeated tetramers of 5S rDNA, have been investigated at single-molecule level by atomic force microscopy and Monte Carlo simulations. A satisfactory correlation emerges between experimental and theoretical internucleosomal distance distributions. However, in the case of telomeric nucleosomal arrays containing two nucleosomes, we found significant differences. Our results show that sequence features of DNA are significant in the basic chromatin organization, but are not the only determinant. 109|OBJECTIVE: To assess cytologic and cytogenetic abnormalities following round spermatid injection. DESIGN: Prospective analysis. SETTING: In vitro fertilization centers. PATIENT(S): Fourteen couples accepted to a round spermatid injection (ROSI) and preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) program after appropriate counseling. INTERVENTION(S): ROSI, PGD, with fluorescence in situ hybridization for chromosome enumeration. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): Cytologic and cytogenetic abnormalities in oocytes, zygotes, and blastomeres. RESULT(S): The fertilization rate following ROSI was 36%. Only 11 of 143 (7.7%) oocytes developed to have several blastomeres. Cytologic and cytogenetic abnormalities accounted for the vast majority of blockage at oocyte, zygote, and early mitotic division stages. Four biopsied embryos were normal. These and seven others were implanted, but no pregnancy was achieved. CONCLUSION(S): A PGD diagnosis for common aneuploidies and blastocyst stage transfer is feasible for ROSI cases. Failure with ROSI is cause primarily by chromosome abnormalities, so use of ROSI in assisted reproductive technologies should be limited. 110|Each of our cells inherit their genetic information in the form of chromosomes from a mother cell. In order that we obtain the full genetic complement, cells need to ensure that replicated chromosomes are accurately split and distributed during cell division. Mistakes in this process lead to aneuploidies, cells with supernumerous or missing chromosomes. Most aneuploid human embryos are not viable, and if they are, they develop severe birth defects. Aneuploidies later in human life are frequently found associated with the development of malignant cancer. DNA replication during S-phase is linked to segregation of the sister copies in mitosis by sister chromatid cohesion. A chromosomal protein complex, cohesin, holds replicated sister DNA strands together after their synthesis. This allows pairs of replication products to be recognised by the spindle apparatus in mitosis for segregation into opposite direction. At anaphase onset, cohesin is destroyed by a site-specific protease, separase. Here I review what we have learned about the molecular mechanism of sister chromatid cohesion. Cohesin forms a large proteinaceous ring that may hold sister chromatids by encircling and topological trapping. To understand how cohesin links newly synthesised replication products, biochemical assays to study the enzymology of cohesin will be required. 111|Duchenne and Becker Muscular Dystrophy (DMD and BMD) are caused, in the majority of cases, by deletions in the dystrophin gene ( DMD). Here we describe the unprecedented case of a BMD patient carrying a large out-of-frame intragenic deletion, together with an inversion in the DMD gene, resulting in the inclusion of a novel exon in the transcript. Multiplex PCR amplification revealed the presence of a 48-52 exon deletion, but transcript analysis identified two unexpected products, neither of them including exon 53. The shorter mRNA derived from the juxtaposition of exons 47-54 (in-frame), while the longer one resulted from the inclusion of a novel 73-bp exon between exons 47 and 54. Sequence analysis revealed that the inserted sequence derived from an inverted portion of intron 53; its inclusion is predicted to determine protein truncation. The presence of a genomic inversion involving exon 53 and flanking regions was confirmed, and inversion/deletion breakpoints were sequenced. The inverted 73-bp sequence displays splicing signals at both ends and thus it is probably recognized as a novel exon when the partially inverted hnRNA is processed. These findings highlight the importance of mRNA analysis on patients that, based on routine DNA screenings, do not follow the reading-frame rule. This is the first reported patient carrying both an intragenic deletion and inversion in the DMD locus. This case might provide further insight into both the mechanisms that determine genomic rearrangements in the DMD locus and the molecular signals that drive exon inclusion. 112|Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in MECP2, encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). The onset of symptoms in RTT is delayed until 6-18 months and 4-6 months in the Mecp2(-/+) mouse model, corresponding to a dynamic and gradual accumulation of MeCP2 expression in individual neurons of the postnatal brain. Because of X chromosome inactivation (XCI), cells within RTT females are mosaic for expression of the heterozygous MECP2 mutation. Using the targeted Mecp2 mouse model, we investigated the effect of Mecp2 mutation on XCI and developmental MeCP2 expression in wild-type (wt)-expressing neurons by quantitative laser scanning cytometry. Mecp2(-/+) female mice exhibited uniform regional distribution of Mecp2 mutant-expressing cells in brain, but unbalanced XCI in the population, favoring expression of the Mecp2 wt allele. Interestingly, MeCP2 expression in Mecp2 wt-expressing cells from Mecp2(-/+) mice was significantly lower than those from Mecp2(+/+) age-matched controls. The negative effect of Mecp2 mutation on wt Mecp2 expression correlated with the percentage of Mecp2 mutant-expressing cells in the cortex. Similar results were observed in two RTT females with identical MECP2 mutations but different XCI ratios. These results demonstrate that Mecp2-mutant neurons affect the development of surrounding neurons in a non-cell-autonomous manner and suggest that environmental influences affect the level of MeCP2 expression in wt neurons. These results help in explaining the role of XCI in the pathogenesis of RTT and have important implications in designing therapies for female RTT patients. 113|Although the significance of tumour site for estimating malignant potential in gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GISTs) has recently been recognized, site-specific genetic patterns have not to date been defined. This study examined 52 c-kit-positive primary GISTs (with a mean follow-up of 42.3 months in 51 cases) from three different locations (35 gastric, 12 small intestinal, and five colorectal) using comparative genomic hybridization (CGH). In general, tumour site correlated with key prognostic factors, including tumour size, mitotic rate, proliferative activity, and probable malignant potential. Furthermore, several DNA copy number changes showed a site-dependent pattern. These included losses at 14q (gastric 83%, intestinal 35%; p = 0.001), losses at 22q (gastric 46%, intestinal 82%; p = 0.02), losses at 1p (gastric 23%, intestinal 88%; p = 1 x 10(-5)), losses at 15q (gastric 14%, intestinal 59%; p = 0.002), losses at 9q (gastric 14%, intestinal 53%; p = 0.006), and gains at 5p (gastric 11%, intestinal 53%; p = 0.002). These data demonstrate strong site-dependent genetic heterogeneity in GISTs that may form a basis for subclassification. Prognostic evaluation of DNA copy number changes identified losses at 9q as a site-independent prognostic marker associated with shorter disease-free survival (p = 0.03) and overall survival (p = 0.002). Furthermore, 9q loss also appeared to carry prognostic value in predicting overall survival for patients with advanced or progressive GISTs (p = 0.003). 114|We describe a new PDGFRB fusion associated with a t(5;14)(q33;q24) in a patient with a longstanding chronic myeloproliferative disorder with eosinophilia. After confirmation of PDGFRB involvement and definition of the chromosome 14 breakpoint by fluorescence in situ hybridization, candidate partner genes were selected on the basis of the presence of predicted oligomerization domains believed to be an essential feature of tyrosine kinase fusion proteins. We demonstrate that the t(5;14) fuses PDGFRB to NIN, a gene encoding a centrosomal protein with CEP110-like function. After treatment with imatinib, the patient achieved hematological and cytogenetical remission, but NIN-PDGFRB mRNA remained detectable by reverse transcription-PCR. 115|We report the prenatal diagnosis of an extra der(4) resulting from 4:2 malsegregation of a maternal balanced complex translocation involving chromosomes 4, 10, and 11. The woman was referred for amniocentesis because of recurrent miscarriages. Fluorescence in situ hybridization was performed in order to characterize the complex chromosome rearrangement. Following genetic counselling, the couple decided to terminate the pregnancy. 116|From the study of numerical and structural chromosomal abnormalities, there is convincing evidence and accumulating information of a direct karyotype to phenotype correlation. Knowledge of phenotypic consequences of a specific chromosomal imbalance is important for genetic counseling and prenatal diagnosis. However, for unbalanced non-Robertsonian translocations a precise karyotype to phenotype correlation is difficult to predict for several reasons: (I) unbalanced non-Robertsonian translocations are rare, (II) the published case reports are often not age-matched, (III) varying breakpoints result in different lengths of the monosomic and trisomic segments and therefore the phenotype will depend on additional genes present or the loss of coding regions, and (IV) the combination of the same trisomy with different monosomies, or vice versa, can result in diverging phenotypes. Therefore, the study of the karyotype to phenotype correlation in affected relatives of the same age and the identical unbalanced translocation provides a good model to investigate phenotypic consequences of a specific genetic imbalance. We report of two second trimester fetuses with the identical major partial trisomy 9 (9pter-9q22.2) and minor partial trisomy 7 (q35-qter) resulting from a familial translocation (7;9)(q35;q22.2)mat. One fetus presented with a Dandy-Walker malformation, polymicrogyria, and mild dysmorphic features, whereas the other fetus showed unilateral cleft lip and palate without cerebral anomalies. Potential mechanisms for this different phenotypic expression of the same unbalanced translocation resulting in partial trisomy 9 and 7 in the two cousins and possible consequences for genetic counseling and prenatal diagnosis are discussed. 117|Recently, metric linkage disequilibrium (LD) maps that assign an LD unit (LDU) location for each marker have been developed (Maniatis et al. 2002). Here we present a multiple pairwise method for positional cloning by LD within a composite likelihood framework and investigate the operating characteristics of maps in physical units (kb) and LDU for two bodies of data (Daly et al. 2001; Jeffreys et al. 2001) on which current ideas of blocks are based. False-negative indications of a disease locus (type II error) were examined by selecting one single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) at a time as causal and taking its allelic count (0, 1, or 2, for the three genotypes) as a pseudophenotype, Y. By use of regression and correlation, association between every pseudophenotype and the allelic count of each SNP locus (X) was based on an adaptation of the Malecot model, which includes a parameter for location of the putative gene. By expressing locations in kb or LDU, greater power for localization was observed when the LDU map was fitted. The efficiency of the kb map, relative to the LDU map, to describe LD varied from a maximum of 0.87 to a minimum of 0.36, with a mean of 0.62. False-positive indications of a disease locus (type I error) were examined by simulating an unlinked causal SNP and the allele count was used as a pseudophenotype. The type I error was in good agreement with Wald's likelihood theorem for both metrics and all models that were tested. Unlike tests that select only the most significant marker, haplotype, or haploset, these methods are robust to large numbers of markers in a candidate region. Contrary to predictions from tagging SNPs that retain haplotype diversity, the sample with smaller size but greater SNP density gave less error. The locations of causal SNPs were estimated with the same precision in blocks and steps, suggesting that block definition may be less useful than anticipated for mapping a causal SNP. These results provide a guide to efficient positional cloning by SNPs and a benchmark against which the power of positional cloning by haplotype-based alternatives may be measured. 118|Additional chromosomal aberrations occur frequently in Philadelphia chromosome positive (Ph+) acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) of childhood. The treatment outcome of these patients is heterogeneous. This study assessed whether such clinical heterogeneity could be partially explained by the presence and characteristics of additional chromosomal abnormalities. Cytogenetic descriptions were available for 249 of 326 children with Ph+ ALL, diagnosed and treated by 10 different study groups/large single institutions from 1986 to 1996. Secondary aberrations were present in 61% of the cases. Chromosomes 9, 22, 7, 14, and 8 were most frequently abnormal. Most (93%) karyotypes were unbalanced. Three main cytogenetic subgroups were identified: no secondary aberrations, gain of a second Ph and/or >50 chromosomes, or loss of chromosome 7, 7p, and/or 9p, while other secondary aberrations were grouped as combinations of gain and loss or others. Of the three main cytogenetic subgroups, the loss group had the worst event-free survival (P=0.124) and disease-free survival (P=0.013). However, statistical significance was not maintained when adjusted for other prognostic factors and treatment. Karyotypic analysis is valuable in subsets of patients identified by molecular screening, to assess the role of additional chromosomal abnormalities and their correlation with clinical heterogeneity, with possible therapeutic implications. 119|In this study, we characterized the chromosomal composition of an intra-abdominal soft tissue sarcoma diagnosed as a malignant fibrous histiocytoma (MFH). By applying a combination of spectral karyotyping, G-banding, and comparative genomic hybridization (CGH), this case was shown to carry large chromosome markers with material mainly from chromosomes 6 and 8. Further characterization of this unique tumor revealed high-level amplifications at the 6q21 approximately q23, 8p21 approximately pter, 8q24 approximately qter, and 12q13 approximately q21 regions. Using array CGH, these amplified regions were found to include MASL1 in 8p, as well s MDM2 and CDK4 in 12q, which have been shown to be amplified in MFH. Similarly, gains of 6q and 8q have also been seen in MFH. In conclusion, our study demonstrates the occurrence of large chromosome markers in MFH and suggests that the regions 6q21 approximately q23, 8p21 approximately pter, 8q24 approximately qter, and 12q13 approximately q21 might harbor oncogenes that could play a role in MFH's tumorigenesis. In addition, gain of 12q13 approximately q21, which is typical of well-differentiated liposarcoma, may also occur in MFH, supporting the previously suggested overlap in genetic etiologies between these two tumor types. 120|The genes UL18, UL19, UL26, UL26.5, UL35 and UL38 of Marek's disease virus 1 (MDV-1) strain RB1B, encoding the homologues of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) capsid proteins VP23, VP5, VP21-VP24, preVP22a, VP26 and VP19C, were identified and sequenced. Recombinant baculoviruses were used to express the six capsid genes in insect cells. Coexpression of the six genes or of UL18, UL19, UL26.5 and UL38 in insect cells resulted in the formation of capsids with a large core. In addition, electron microscopy of thin sections clearly revealed the presence of large numbers of small spherical particles. Experimental coinfection demonstrated that these small particles were associated with production of the preVP22a protein. 121|To reveal the relationship between hypodiploidy with 30 to 39 chromosomes and near-triploidy in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), we studied 24 patients presenting with one of these aneuploidies among 623 adults with ALL registered in the Leucemie Aigue Lymphoblastique de l'Adulte (LALA) protocols. The 2 ploidy groups presented a striking similarity of their cytogenetic profiles: chromosomes 2, 3, 4, 7, 13, 15, 16, and 17, significantly monosomic in hypodiploidy 30 to 39, were also frequently disomic in near-triploidy, whereas those retained in pairs in hypodiploidy 30 to 39 were frequently tetrasomic in near-triploidy. DNA content data revealed the simultaneous presence of 2 aneuploid peaks in most tested cases (DNA indexes: 0.72-0.87/1.39-1.89) and a multiple correspondence analysis applied on cytogenetic profiles ascertained their strong relationship. We thus assumed that near-triploidy derives from the duplication of hypodiploidy with 30 to 39 chromosomes and that both aneuploid groups are 2 expressions of the same disease. These 24 patients presented with B-cell phenotype, low leukocytoses (median white blood cell count, 4.2 x 10(9)/L), and poor prognosis (complete remission, 57%; median disease-free-survival, 8 months; median survival, 10.4 months) comparable to that of Ph(+) patients treated according to the same protocol. We suggest that hypodiploidy with 30 to 39 chromosomes or near-triploidy should be regarded as a new high-risk factor in the risk stratification of adult ALL protocols. 122|Human fetuses are thought to be highly sensitive to radiation exposure because diagnostic low-dose X rays have been suggested to increase the risk of childhood leukemia. However, animal studies generally have not demonstrated a high radiosensitivity of fetuses, and the underlying causes for the discrepancy remain unidentified. We examined atomic bomb survivors exposed in utero for translocation frequencies in blood lymphocytes at 40 years of age. Contrary to our expectation of a greater radiosensitivity in fetuses than in adults, the frequency did not increase with dose except for a small increase (less than 1%) at doses below 0.1 Sv, which was statistically significant. We interpret the results as indicating that fetal lymphoid precursor cells comprise two subpopulations. One is small in number, sensitive to the induction of both translocations and cell killing, but rapidly diminishing above 50 mSv. The other is the major fraction but is insensitive to registering damage expressed as chromosome aberrations. Our results provide a biological basis for resolving the long-standing controversy that a substantial risk of childhood leukemia is implicated in human fetuses exposed to low-dose X rays whereas animal studies involving mainly high-dose exposures generally do not confirm it. 123|Critical telomere shortening induces senescence in many normal human cell types grown in culture. Recent data have revealed that dysfunctional telomeres can resemble certain forms of DNA damage, and point to a role for DNA damage signaling in the establishment and maintenance of telomere-initiated senescence. Here, we review these new observations and highlight potential avenues of future research. We consider the identities of the key DNA damage response factors involved in senescence and discuss a model for the molecular events occurring in pre-senescent cells that ultimately lead to a permanent cell cycle arrest phenotype. 124|BACKGROUND/AIMS: It has been well accepted that there is an allelic imbalance at a subtelomeric region of chromosome 1p in various human malignancies including hepatocellular carcinoma. We conducted a detailed deletion mapping study at 1p36 loci in 65 hepatocellular carcinomas as an initial step towards positional cloning of the target gene. METHODOLOGY: We performed a fine-scale deletion mapping using 10 highly polymorphic microsatellite markers along the telomeric region of 1p (1p32-p36.3) and compared the clinicopathologic features with allelic imbalance of 1p36 loci. RESULTS: Allelic imbalance occurred in at least one locus on 1p in 32 (49.2%) of the 65 cases. Consequently, it was confirmed that a common region of overlaps was restricted to 1p36 and it was further clearly demonstrated that there were at least three independent regions in 1p36 (1p36.1, p36.2'36.3 and p36.3). An apparent trend towards significance has been demonstrated between allelic imbalance at 1p36 loci and tumors with classifcation T1-T2 (p<0.01). CONCLUSIONS: The present study demonstrated that the shortest region of overlap was confined within 1p36 chromosomal sub-band in human hepatocellular carcinoma, which might be involved in an early step of hepatocarcinogenesis, and it encourages future studies to identify the putative tumor suppressor gene(s) at 1p36. 125|The fragile histidine triad (FHIT) gene, located at chromosome 3p14.2, is deleted in many solid tumors, including lung cancer. Its protein product is presumed to have tumor suppressor function. We investigated the incidence of loss of heterozygosity and loss of FHIT expression in a series of non-small-cell lung carcinomas and its correlation to apoptosis, proliferation index and prognosis. FHIT expression was determined by immunohistochemistry in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissues from 54 squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) and 44 adenocarcinomas (AC) of the lung. DNA from frozen tumor and corresponding normal tissues were analyzed for allelic losses at two loci located internal (D3S1300, D3S1234) and three loci in flanking regions centromeric and telomeric (D3S1210, D3S1312, D3S1313) to the FHIT gene. Apoptosis was detected by terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL). Proliferation index was determined with ki-67 and flow cytometric analysis. We correlated the results with tumor histology, prognosis and some immunohistochemical markers (p53, bcl-2, bax, c-myc, p21(waf1), cyclin-D1). FHIT expression was related to tumor histology: 52 of 54 (96.3%) SCC and 20 of 44 (45.5%) AC were negative for FHIT (P<0.0001). We found LOH at 3p14.2 in 67.8% of the 98 cases: 72.3% of SCC and 61.4% of AC. Loss of FHIT expression was associated with a higher proliferation index (ki-67, P=0.007; flow cytometry, P<0.004) and lower apoptotic index (P=0.018). LOH at FHIT gene were associated to a high proliferation (flow cytometry, P<0.001) and lower apoptotic level (P=0.043). The log-rank test demonstrated a significant inverse correlation (P=0.039) between loss of FHIT expression and patient survival. FHIT plays an important role in the development of non-small-cell lung cancer, particularly in SCC. Loss of FHIT protein is correlated with a high proliferation and low apoptotic index in tumor cells, and is an independent prognostic indicator for the clinical outcome in patients with these tumors. 126|BACKGROUND: There is substantial evidence for a significant genetic component to the risk for alcoholism. However, susceptibility loci or genes for alcohol dependence remain largely unknown. To identify susceptibility loci for alcohol dependence, we selected 329 extended families from the Framingham Heart Study population in which at least one family member reported alcohol consumption during the interview in 1970-1971, and performed genome-wide linkage analyses using various analytical methods. RESULTS: Multi-point sib-pair regression analysis using the SIBPAL program of S.A.G.E. provided strong evidence for linkage of alcohol dependence to chromosomes 9 (p-value < 0.0001) and weak evidence to chromosomes 15 and 16 (p-value < 0.005). To confirm these findings, we re-analyzed the same data set by various methods implemented in GENEHUNTER and found that only one region was significant with a LOD score > 2.0 by the variance-component method. This region is located on chromosome 9 between markers GATA21F05 and GATA81C04. CONCLUSION: Analyses of the Framingham Heart Study population provided evidence of genetic susceptibility loci for alcohol dependence on chromosomes 9, 15, and 16. The genomic region identified on chromosome 9 was particularly interesting because the region has also been previously reported to be linked to alcohol dependence in the American Indian population by another group. 127|X linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA) is an immunodeficiency disease caused by mutations in the gene coding for Bruton's agammaglobulinemia tyrosine kinase (BTK), that is involved in signal transduction pathways regulating survival, activation, proliferation, and differentiation of B lineage lymphoid cells. XLA is a primary immunodeficiency disorder characterized by lack of mature, circulating B lymphocytes, and recurrent infections. Using Single Strand Conformation Polymorphism (SSCP) followed by direct sequencing we investigated 57 patients with XLA phenotype, with or without a positive family history, from 52 unrelated families enrolled in the Italian XLA Multicenter Clinical Study. We have identified 25 recurrent mutations, 22 novel mutations including one large deletion comprising the coding sequence from exon 11 to 18. Among the mutations identified, three were detected in different unrelated families, whereas all the others were private mutations. 128|Wegener's granulomatosis (WG) is a systemic disease with complex genetic background. It is characterized by necrotizing granulomatous inflammation of the upper and lower respiratory tract, glomerulonephritis, vasculitis and the presence of antineutrophil cytoplasmatic autoantibodies (C-ANCAs) in sera of patients. Here, we report on an extended association screen (EAS) with 202 microsatellite markers, representing apoptosis-related genes and further genes down-regulated in apoptotic neutrophils, using pooled DNA of 150 Northern German patients suffering from WG and 100 healthy Northern German controls. Six microsatellite allele patterns were found significantly associated with WG, three of which could be confirmed by individual genotyping. One marker remained significantly associated after multiple corrections. This marker representing the retinoid X receptor beta gene (RXRB, P=7.60x10(-6), distance to gene: approximately 5.3 kb) is localised in the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) region between the HLA-DPB1 and DAXX genes. HLA-DPB1 typing and fine mapping of the region with additional microsatellites and single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) revealed a strong association of WG with the significantly over-represented DPB1*0401 ( P=1.51x10(-10), OR=3.91) allele compared with the control cohort. In addition, an extended haplotype DPB1*0401/RXRB03 was identified showing an even stronger association with WG ( P=7.13x10(-17), OR=6.41). These results represent the strongest association of a genomic region with WG, suggesting a major genetic contribution in the aetiology of the disease. Thus, our data demonstrate that EAS may be a valuable alternative approach for determining genetic predisposition factors in multifactorial diseases. 129|Cell cycle events must be faithfully executed and properly integrated to ensure genetic stability. The Mps1 family of protein kinases has recently emerged as a critical regulator of genetic stability, because they regulate several processes central to mitotic fidelity. The spindle checkpoint monitors alignment of mitotic chromosomes, and centrosomes control cell cycle entry, mitotic spindle assembly, and cytokinesis. Several studies have shown that vertebrate orthologues of budding yeast Mps1p regulate the spindle checkpoint. More recently it has been demonstrated that human Mps1 is also required for centrosome duplication, normal mitotic progression, and cytokinesis. 130|OBJECTIVES: Allogeneic transplantation may offer a curative approach to multiple myeloma (MM). We retrospectively analyzed the outcome of patients with multiple myeloma undergoing allogeneic stem cell transplantation in the context of beta(2) microglobulin and chromosome 13q. METHODS: All 13 patients with MM, who were referred to our center for allogeneic stem cell transplantation, were evaluated. Median age of patients was 38 yr, eight patients had chemo-sensitive disease, and median time between diagnosis of MM and transplantation was 15 months. Engraftment, acute and chronic graft vs. host disease, response to treatment, disease-free survival, and overall survival were evaluated according to standard criteria. RESULTS: There was one transplant-related death. Among 12 evaluable patients, seven patients (58%) achieved a complete remission (CR), and four patients (33%) achieved a partial remission. Acute graft vs. host disease occurred in 46% of patients, and chronic graft vs. host disease in 42% of available patients. After a median follow-up of 69.5 months (range, 5-128) nine patients (70%) are still alive, and six of them have remained progression free. Among five patients with low beta(2) microglobulin and normal chromosome 13q, four patients achieved a CR, with CR duration >5 yr in three of them. Among seven patients with elevated ss(2) microglobulin and/or deletion of chromosome 13q, only three CR were observed, with two patients still in CR on days +920 and +161, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Allogeneic stem cell transplantation in patients with MM results in promising rates of CR, but durable remissions are predominantly seen in patients with favorable prognostic parameters. 131|Aggressive natural killer-cell leukemia (ANKL) is a rare form of large granular lymphocyte leukemia, which is characterized by a systemic proliferation of NK cells. The clinical features of 22 ANKL cases were analyzed. Hepatomegaly (64%), splenomegaly (55%) and lymphadenopathy (41%) were also frequently observed. Leukemic cells were identified as CD1-, CD2+, surface CD3-, CD4-, CD5-, CD7+, CD8+/-, CD10-, CD11b+/-, CD13-, CD16+, CD19-, CD20-, CD25-, CD33(-), CD34-, CD38+, CD56+, CD122+, HLA-DR+ and TCR-. Two of the 16 cases examined for CD57 were positive and three of the seven cases examined for cytoplasmic CD3. Epstein-Barr virus was detected in the tumor cells of 11 of the 13 cases examined. No common cytogenetic abnormalities were identified and 6q anomaly was detected in only one. Three of 13 patients treated with chemotherapy containing anthracycline/anthraquinone attained complete remission, in contrast to none of the eight who were treated with regimens without anthracycline. Although the overall prognosis was poor with a median survival of 58 days, those who attained remission showed better prognosis (P=0.005). These findings suggest that ANKL is an entity of mature cytotoxic NK-cell neoplasms with distinct phenotype and disease presentations. Intensive treatment for ANKL may result in a better prognosis. 132|PURPOSE: Rapamycin inhibits the serine-threonine kinase mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), blocking phosphorylation of p70 S6 kinase (S6K1) and 4E-binding protein 1 (4E-BP1) and inhibiting protein translation and cell cycle progression. Rapamycin and its analogues are currently being tested in clinical trials as novel-targeted anticancer agents. Although rapamycin analogues show activity in clinical trials, only some of the treated patients respond. The purpose of this study is to identify determinants of rapamycin sensitivity that may assist the selection of appropriate patients for therapy. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Breast cancer cell lines representing a spectrum of aberrations in the mTOR signaling pathway were tested for rapamycin sensitivity. The expression and phosphorylation state of multiple components of the pathway were tested by Western blot analysis, in the presence and absence of rapamycin. RESULTS: Cell proliferation was significantly inhibited in response to rapamycin in 12 of 15 breast cancer cell lines. The ratio of total protein levels of 4E-BP1 to its binding partner eukaryotic initiation factor 4E did not predict rapamycin sensitivity. In contrast, overexpression of S6K1, and phosphorylated Akt independent of phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted from chromosome 10 status, were associated with rapamycin sensitivity. Targeting S6K1 and Akt with small interfering RNA and dominant-negative constructs, respectively, decreased rapamycin sensitivity. Rapamycin inhibited the phosphorylation of S6K1, ribosomal S6 protein, and 4E-BP1 in rapamycin-resistant as well as -sensitive cells, indicating that its ability to inhibit the mTOR pathway is not sufficient to confer sensitivity to rapamycin. In contrast, rapamycin treatment was associated with decreased cyclin D1 levels in the rapamycin-sensitive cells but not in rapamycin-resistant cells. CONCLUSIONS: Overexpression of S6K1 and expression of phosphorylated Akt should be evaluated as predictors of rapamycin sensitivity in breast cancer patients. Furthermore, changes in cyclin D1 levels provide a potential pharmacodynamic marker of response to rapamycin. 133|Formin homology proteins with FH1 and FH2 domains are signaling effectors for assembly and polarization of actin filaments. FH1 is the binding domain for Profilin, SRC, EMS1/Cortactin, FNBP1, FNBP2, FNBP3, FNBP4 and WBP4/Fbp21, while FH2 is the actin-filament modification domain. Here, we identified and characterized a novel member of Formin-homology gene family, Diaphanous homology 3 (DIAPH3), by using bioinformatics. DIAPH3 isoform 1, corresponding to 3'-truncated FLJ34705 cDNA and 5'-divergent IMAGE5265490 cDNA, encodes full-length DIAPH3 protein (1112 aa), while DIAPH3 isoform 2, identical to NM_030932.2 cDNA, encodes N-terminally truncated DIAPH3 protein (849 aa). DIAPH3 isoform 1, consisting of exons 1-27, was expressed in lymph node, erythroid progenitor cells as well as in pancreatic cancer. DIAPH3 isoform 2, consisting of exons 1b and 8-27, was expressed in testis. DIAPH3 gene at human chromosome 13q21.2 was found to encode two isoforms due to alternative splicing of the alternative promoter type. Full-length human DIAPH3 protein, consisting of FDD, FH1 and FH2 domains, showed 51.3% total-amino-acid identity with DIAPH1, and 57.3% total-amino-acid identity with DIAPH2. FMNL1/FMNL, FMNL2/FHOD2, FMNL3/WBP3, DAAM1, DAAM2, DIAPH1, DIAPH2 and DIAPH3 were classified as the FDD-type Formin homology proteins, while GRID2IP/Delphilin, FHOD1, Fmn1 and Fmn2 were classified as the non-FDD-type Formin homology proteins. This is the first report on identification and characterization of human DIAPH3 gene. 134|Submicroscopic rearrangements involving chromosome ends are responsible for the unexplained mental retardation and multiple congenital anomalies observed in a number of patients. We have studied a patient with mental retardation, significant microcephaly, alopecia universalis, and other anomalies who carries an unbalanced segregant from a cryptic reciprocal translocation involving chromosomes 9 and 19. FISH studies using subtelomere specific probes revealed a derivative chromosome 9 in which the 9q subtelomeric sequence has been replaced by 19p subtelomeric sequence. As a result, the patient has partial monosomy 9q and partial trisomy 19p. The patient inherited the derivative 9 from his father, who carries a cryptic apparently balanced reciprocal translocation involving the terminal regions of 9q and 19p. This case is exceptional in that reports of rearrangements involving distal chromosome 9q and 19p are rare. This study demonstrates the utility of subtelomere specific FISH probes for detecting cryptic subtelomeric rearrangements in patients with idiopathic mental retardation and normal appearing karyotypes. 135|OBJECTIVES: To present the clinical, cytogenetic, and molecular findings of prenatally diagnosed mosaic trisomy 16. CASE: A 30-year-old gravida 2, para 1 woman was referred for amniocentesis because of a positive maternal serum screen result with elevated maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein (MSAFP) and maternal serum free beta-human chorionic gonadotrophin (MSfreebeta-hCG). Cytogenetic analysis of amniotic fluid at 21 weeks' gestation revealed mosaicism for trisomy 16, 47,XX,+16[3]/46,XX[15]. Ultrasonography demonstrated right diaphragmatic hernia and agenesis of left umbilical artery. The pregnancy was terminated subsequently. The karyotype of the cord blood was 46,XX. Cytogenetic analyses of the multiple sampled tissue specimens showed a karyotype of 47,XX,+16 in the placenta and 47,XX,+16/46,XX with various levels of trisomy 16 in the umbilical cord and skin. Molecular studies showed that the trisomy 16 in the placenta was likely to have resulted from a maternal meiosis II nondisjunction error. Partial dosage increase of an extra maternal allele was noted in the skin and umbilical cord. CONCLUSION: Fetuses with mosaic trisomy 16 may be associated with congenital diaphragmatic hernia and elevated MSAFP and MShCG. Fetal blood sampling is of a limited value in confirming mosaic trisomy 16 ascertained through amniocentesis. 136|The human Siva gene is localized to chromosome 14q32-33 and gives rise to the full-length predominant form, Siva-1 and a minor alternate form, Siva-2 that appears to lack the proapoptotic properties of Siva-1. Our recent work has shown that the missing region in Siva-2 encodes a unique twenty amino acid putative amphipathic helical region (SAH, residues 36-55 in Siva-1). Despite the fact that Siva-1 does not belong to the BCL-2 family, it specifically interacts with the anti-apoptotic protein BCL-XL and sensitizes MCF7 breast cancer cells expressing BCL-XL to UV radiation induced apoptosis. Deletion mutagenesis has mapped the necessary region to the SAH in Siva-1. In this paper we demonstrate that the SAH region in Siva-1 is sufficient to specifically interact with the anti-apoptotic members of the BCL2 family such as BCL-XL and BCL-2 but not its apoptotic member BAX. Using transient transfections and direct microinjection of synthetic SAH peptides, we also demonstrate that the SAH region is sufficient to inhibit the BCL-XL mediated cell survival and render MDA-MB-231 and MCF7 breast cancer cells expressing BCL-XL highly susceptible to UV radiation induced apoptosis. The underlying mechanism of action of SAH mediated inhibition of BCL-XL (and/or BCL2) cell survival appears to be due to loss of mitochondrial integrity as reflected in enhanced cytochrome c release leading to the activation of caspase 9 and finally caspase 3. 137|BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: The collagen alpha2(I) gene (COL1A2) on chromosome 7q22.1, a positional and functional candidate for intracranial aneurysm (IA), was extensively screened for susceptibility in Japanese IA patients. METHODS: Twenty-one single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of COL1A2 were genotyped in genomic DNA from 260 IA patients (including 115 familial cases) (mean age, 59.9 years) and 293 controls (mean age, 61.6 years). Differences in allelic and genotypic frequencies between the patients and controls were evaluated with the chi(2) test. Circular dichroism spectrometry was monitored with collagen-related peptides that mimic triple-helical models of type I collagen with Ala-459 and Pro-459 to estimate the conformation and stability of alterations. RESULTS: Significant genotypic association in the dominant model was observed between an exonic SNP of COL1A2 and familial IA patients (chi(2)=11.08; df=1; P=0.00087; odds ratio=3.19; 95% CI, 2.22 to 6.50). This SNP induces Ala to Pro substitution at amino acid 459, located on a triple-helical domain. Circular dichroism spectra showed that the Pro-459 peptide had a higher thermal stability than the Ala-459 peptide. CONCLUSIONS: The variant of COL1A2 could be a genetic risk factor for IA patients with family history. 138|The requirement for sufficient quantities of starting RNA has limited the ability to evaluate multiple transcripts using reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). In this study, we demonstrate the utility of linear RNA amplification for RT-PCR analysis of multiple gene transcripts including a chromosomal translocation, using the t(2;5)(p23;q35) as a model. RNA from the t(2;5)-positive cell line, SU-DHL-1, and the t(2;5)-negative cell line, HUT-78, was extracted and exposed to two rounds of linear amplification. RT-PCR using cDNA from the resultant amplified (a) RNA and total RNA resulted in the 177 bp NPM-ALK fusion gene product from the SU-DHL-1 cell line, but not from aRNA or total RNA from the HUT-78 cell line. DNA sequencing of the RT-PCR products from total and aRNA of SU-DHL-1 cells demonstrated identical sequences corresponding to the NPM-ALK fusion gene. Evaluation of 25 snap-frozen tissue samples, including eight NPM-ALK-positive ALCLs demonstrated 100% concordance of t(2;5) detection between cDNA from total RNA and that from aRNA. Our results show that linear amplification of RNA can enhance starting RNA greater than 200-fold and can be used for rapid and specific detection of multiplex gene expression from a variety of sources. This method can generate a renewable archive of representative cDNA, which can be used for retrospective screening of stored samples as well as positive controls for the clinical molecular diagnostic laboratory. 139|BACKGROUND: Apolipoprotein E (apoE) is encoded by a polymorphic gene located on chromosome 19. The three common apoE alleles are epsilon2, epsilon3 and epsilon4. We studied the frequencies of the apoE alleles and genotypes in the three ethnic groups-Malay, Chinese and Indian-in Malaysia using DNA amplification followed by agarose gel electrophoresis. METHODS: EDTA blood was collected and DNA was extracted using proteinase K-SDS digestion and purified by phenol-chloroform extraction. The apoE gene sequence was amplified using the PCR and apoE genotyping was performed by restriction enzyme digestion with HhaI. RESULTS: Genotyping of the apoE gene produces six genotypes-E2/E2, E2/E3, E3/E3, E2/E4, E3/E4 and E4/E4. The most common apoE genotype in the Malays, Chinese and Indians studied was E3/E3, thus the most common apoE allele was epsilon3. The three common apoE genotypes were E3/E3 followed by E3/E4 and E2/E3, except in the Indians where E2/E3 was not detected. The three apoE alleles were confirmed in the Malays, Chinese and Indians except for the epsilon2 allele which was absent in the Indians. CONCLUSION: The combined frequency of the apoE alleles in the Malays, Chinese and Indians was 0.058, 0.829 and 0.114 for epsilon2, epsilon3 and epsilon4, respectively. 140|OBJECTIVE: The prevalence of gout and hyperuricemia in Taiwanese aborigines is remarkably high. Although previous studies have failed to find evidence of a major gene responsible for gout, the disease is thought to involve genetic predisposition. We sought to determine whether genetic factors for familial gout exist among Taiwanese aborigines, and, if so, their chromosomal location. METHODS: We first performed complex segregation analysis. The study sample comprised 945 relatives distributed in 64 pedigrees; among them, 261 affected members (including probands) were found. In all of the aboriginal probands with gout, the disease was diagnosed and confirmed by rheumatologists. Blood specimens were then collected from 127 individuals living in one community that was used in the segregation analysis (from 25 pedigrees, 36 nuclear families, and 112 full sibpairs), and sibpair linkage analysis and a combined transmission disequilibrium test (TDT) method were used to test the genetic components. RESULTS: In segregation analysis, after adjusting for sex and age, an autosomal-arbitrary major gene model was found to fit the data best, with disease allelic frequency of 0.31 and susceptibility of 0.92. In sibpair analysis, there was a clustering of many flanking markers showing significant linkage, including D1S498 (regression coefficient -0.52), D1S2635 (regression coefficient -0.47), and D1S196 (regression coefficient -0.51), in the 1q21 region of chromosome 1 (all P < 0.005). Results of the combined TDT showed that the marker D1S484 was significantly associated (had linkage) with allele 1 and was transmitted more frequently than other markers to the affected offspring (P < 0.005). CONCLUSION: Results of this study provide evidence of a genetic basis for familial gout in the aboriginal Taiwanese population and suggest that a susceptibility locus may be located in the 1q21 region of chromosome 1. 141|Senescence is a permanent form of cell cycle arrest that limits the proliferation of damaged cells and may contribute to tumor suppression and aging. We recently demonstrated that some senescent cell types undergo dramatic changes in chromatin organization that are dependent on the retinoblastoma protein and are associated with the stable repression of some E2F target genes. Here we show how these changes might contribute to the stability of the senescent state. 142|The study of chronic myeloid leukemia has yielded many insights, especially after the discovery of the Ph chromosome, into the pathogenesis of leukemia and other forms of malignant disease. Most recently, knowledge of the central function of the BCR-ABL fusion gene led to the development of a small molecule, imatinib, that has proved remarkably effective at reducing the number of leukemia cells in individual CML patients and promises to prolong life substantially in comparison with earlier treatments. However, many questions relating to this exciting new agent remain unanswered, for example, how exactly it works, how patients develop resistance and what can be done to prevent or delay its onset, and whether any patient can really be "cured" by its use. 143|Pathological examinations, using a panel of tau and other antibodies, were performed on the brains from 55 consecutively acquired cases of frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). Clinically, these comprised 31 cases of frontotemporal dementia (FTD), 10 cases of motor neurone disease inclusion dementia (MNDID), seven cases of progressive aphasia (PA), four cases of semantic dementia (SD) and three cases of progressive apraxia (PAX). Tau pathology, in the form of neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) and glial cell tangles, was present in six cases of FTD with parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17, five of these cases resulting from +16 splice-site mutation and one from +13 mutation in the tau gene. The insoluble tau proteins were comprised mostly of four-repeat (4-R) isoforms. Eight other cases of FTD, one of PA and all three cases of PAX showed tau-positive inclusions (Pick bodies) and swollen cells (Pick cells), characteristic of Pick's disease. In these cases, the insoluble tau proteins were present in most instances as three-repeat (3-R) tau isoforms, although two cases with a mixture of 3-R and 4-R isoforms were seen. One other case of FTD showed an unusual pathology characterized by massive extracellular deposition of tau protein, composed of 4-R tau isoforms, within white matter without neuronal or glial cell inclusions. However, 33 (60%) of 55 FTLD cases showed no tau pathology in the brain, except for the rare NFTs, composed of a mix of 3-R and 4-R isoforms, in some of the more elderly cases. Of these 33 cases, 13 had FTD, 10 had MNDID, six had PA and four had SD. The pathological changes present were those of a superficial cortical laminar microvacuolation with mild subpial and subcortical gliosis; the 10 MNDID cases had ubiquitin-positive inclusions in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus. These 33 nontau FTLD cases, along with five Alzheimer's disease (AD) and six Huntington's disease (HD) cases with severe pathology, showed a variable loss of soluble tau proteins, broadly comparable with the extent of neuronal loss from the cortex and loss of the intracortical perikaryal marker, NeuN, but unrelated to proteins within afferent projection fibres such as neurofilament and alpha-synuclein. Levels of tau mRNA were decreased in parallel in the tau-negative FTLD cases and in the severe AD and HD cases. Hence, the loss of tau from these 33 nontau FTLD cases is just one aspect of a neurodegenerative process that destroys many components of the nerve cell machinery and does not represent a specific disordering of the cell's ability to form tau proteins or incorporate these into microtubules. 144|Replication of mammalian chromosomes depends on the activation of a large number of origins of DNA replication distributed along the chromosomes. We have focused our attention on a human DNA region, named ARSH1, localized to chromosome 2, that had been previously shown to act as an episomal origin in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In the present study we have used a nascent strand DNA abundance assay to map initiation sites for DNA replication in in vivo human chromosomes around a 5 kb region encompassing ARSH1. This analysis applied to a 1-1.4 kb nascent DNA strand fraction isolated from normal skin fibroblasts revealed the presence of two major initiations sites surrounding the ARSH1 region. With an equivalent DNA fraction obtained from HeLa cells, in addition to these sites, a broad initiation profile was observed which included the ARSH1 region. This DNA region however was not sufficient to support episomal replication of an ARSH1-containing plasmid transfected into HeLa cells. 145|Autosomal dominant cerebellar ataxias constitute one of the most clinically, neuropathologically, and genetically heterogeneous groups of neurodegenerative disorders. Approximately 50 to 80% of the families carry mutations in genes known to be implicated in spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs). Numerous loci (SCAn) also have been mapped, often in single families, but the responsible genes have not yet been identified. This suggests further genetic heterogeneity. We have ascertained 18 subjects from a large French family in which cerebellar ataxia and prominent sensory neuropathy segregated as a dominant trait. Intrafamilial variability was high regarding age at onset (17 months to 39 years), severity, and the clinical picture that ranged from pure sensory neuropathy with little cerebellar involvement to a Friedreich's ataxia-like phenotype. After excluding known genes/loci responsible for SCA and hereditary sensory neuropathies, we detected linkage with chromosome 2p markers in a genomewide screen. We designated this new locus SCA25 after testing of 16 additional markers. Maximum two-point logarithm of odds scores of 3.15 and 3.10 were obtained at D2S2378 and D2S2734, respectively. Haplotype analysis defined a critical 12.6cM region of 15Mb between D2S2174 and D2S2736. No linkage to this locus was found in four other families. This interval contains several genes that could be responsible for the disease. One of these genes, CRIPT, encodes a postsynaptic protein, but no mutations were found by direct sequencing, excluding its responsibility in the disease. CAG repeat expansions often are involved in SCA pathogenesis, but no pathological expansions were found at the protein or at the DNA level using the 1C2 antibody and the repeat expansion detection method, respectively. The gene responsible for SCA25 remains to be identified. 146|Patients with schizophrenia (n=11) and bipolar affective disorder (n=17) from the relatively isolated population of the Faroe Islands were genotyped for 34 polymorphic markers on chromosome 4 in a search for allelic association and haplotype sharing among distantly related patients. When considering bipolar patients only, there was no clearcut support for any region on chromosome 4. The two-marker segment D4S394-D4S2983 at 4p16.1 was, however, supported by a P-value of 0.0162. For patients with schizophrenia, there was reasonable support for 4p16.1 as marker D4S2281 (P=0.0019), a two-marker segment (D4S2281-D4S1605, P=0.0009) and a three-marker segment (D4S2923-D4S2928-D4S1582, P-0.0005) appeared to be associated with schizophrenia, with some alleles/haplotypes occurring with different frequencies in patients compared to controls. When combining both psychiatric disorders, chromosome 4p16.1 received further support from five partially overlapping two- and three-marker segments (D4S394-D4S2983, P=0.0039; D4S2281-D4S1605, P=0.0027 and D4S394-D4S2983-D4S2923, P=0.006; D4S2923-D4S2928-D4S1582, P=0.00007; D4S1582-D4S1599-D4S2281, P=0.005). Increased haplotype sharing in patients with schizophrenia and in the combined data set was partly supported by Fisher's exact test and tests based on the genealogy. Our study yields support for a common risk gene for schizophrenia and bipolar affective disorder on the short arm of chromosome 4, as suggested by previous findings in the neighbouring Scottish population. 147|OBJECTIVE: To study the possibility of curing chronic myeloid leukemia with autogeneic hemopoietic stem cell transplantation in patients with negative Philadelphia (Ph) chromosome induced by imatinib mesylate (STI 571) treatment. METHODS: Two patients with chronic myeloid leukemia in chronic phase, who had 90% Ph chromosome-positive cells and bcr/abl fusion gene-positive cells as shown by interphase fluorescence in situ hybridization (I-FISH), failed to respond favorably to interferon-alpha therapy in the treatment courses of 7 and 8 months, respectively. Treatment with STI 571 at a daily dose of 300 to 400 mg for 5 months to 8 months was subsequently implemented, after which the Ph chromosome and bcr/abl fusion genes became normal in detection for 3 times. Peripheral blood haemopoietic stem cell mobilization was then initiated by intravenous injection of cytarabine (2.0 g/d) for 3 days, etoposide (0.2 g/d) for 3 d and cyclophosphamide (1.0 g/d) for one day. When the white blood cell was below 1.0x10(9)/L, the G-CSF (300 microg/d) was administered subcutaneously for 5 or 6 d, and the peripheral blood mononuclear cells were collected by CS3000 Plus blood cell separator. The percentage of bcr/abl fusion gene-positive cells among CD34(9) cells enriched by MiniMAC ranged from 11% to 14%. After 3 or 4 weeks, the patients received total body irradiation at 9 Gy given in 2 fractions, with intravenous injection of cyclophosphamide (60 mg/kg daily) and etoposide (300 mg/d) for 2 d. On the day of transplantation, the collected mononuclear cells were 4.17x10(8)/kg and 3.9x10(8)/kg, with CD34(+)/ cells reaching 4.89x10(6)/kg.b.w and 4.89x10(6)/kg. CsA was also used since day -1 to day +13 of the transplantation for prevention of graft-versus-host disease. G-CSF was administrated daily at the dose of 300 microg subcutaneously from day +3 to +12. RESULTS: After the transplantation, the absolute neutrophil count (ANC) took a mean of 11 d to exceed 0.5x10(9)/L in these two patients, and 19 and 21 d, respectively, were needed for the platelet count to exceed 20x10(9)/L. The two patients showed cytogenetic relapse at 120 and 300 d after the transplantation, respectively. CONCLUSION: Autogeneic peripheral blood stem cells transplantation after Ph chromosome is negative in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia, who receive STI 571 treatment, may also relapse, and more radical elimination of Ph chromosome-positive cells is needed. 148|PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Aside from bone marrow transplantation, a definitive cure for Philadelphia (Ph) chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) has yet to be developed. Although Imatinib, the first molecularly targeted drug developed for CML has achieved a remarkable success, the emergence of resistance to this agent mitigates the prospect of a cure for this leukemia. Though a variety of resistance mechanisms can arise, in the majority of patients resistance coincides with reactivation of the tyrosine kinase activity of the BCR-ABL fusion oncoprotein. This can result from gene amplification and, more importantly, point mutations that disrupt the bind of imatinib to BCR-ABL itself. In this review, we aim to define and illuminate mechanisms of resistance and describe how drug resistance is shedding new light on kinase domain regulation. RECENT FINDINGS: In light of recent studies and publications, it is now clear that Imatinib exerts its inhibitory action by stabilizing the inactive non ATP-binding conformation of BCR-ABL and that mutations even outside the kinase domain can lead to enhanced autophosphorylation of the kinase, thereby stabilizing the active conformation that resists imatinib binding. So far, 25 different substitutions of 21 amino acid residues of BCR-ABL have been detected in CML patients. In addition, it has been recently illustrated that mutations preexist the onset of treatment and that some confer a more aggressive disease phenotype. Finally it has been shown that molecular remission is almost never reached through Imatinib therapy. SUMMARY: The most common mechanism of relapse for CML patients treated with Imatinib is the appearance of point mutations in the BCR-ABL oncogene that confer resistance to this drug. Insights into the emerging problem of resistance should promote the rational development of alternative, synergistic, and potentially curative treatment strategies. 149|Localized aggressive periodontitis (LAP; previously known as localized juvenile periodontitis) is one of the rapidly progressive periodontal diseases. Certain forms of familial LAP show a simple Mendelian pattern of transmission. However, no gene mutation has been identified to be responsible for the LAP phenotype. As an initial step to identify a gene mutation associated with LAP, we have performed genetic linkage analysis with four multigenerational families exhibiting the LAP phenotype. Affected individuals in the families were identified based on clinical and laboratory criteria in an attempt to define a homogeneous phenotype, since the clinical presentation of LAP may represent a manifestation of a heterogeneous group of diseases. The LAP phenotype is linked to a DNA marker, D1S492, with LOD score 3.48, theta=0.00. The haplotype analysis of the chromosome interval associated with D1S492 indicates that a LAP locus is located between D1S196 and D1S533 on chromosome 1, covering about 26 million DNA basepairs. We have also examined the DNA sequence of prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2 or cyclooxygenase 2, COX2) since prostaglandin 2 (PGE2), the product of COX2, is upregulated in LAP patients and COX2 is located between D1S196 and D1S533. No mutation in COX2 was identified in the patients. 150|This study describes the physical and linkage mapping of 42 gene-associated markers developed from mammary gland-derived expressed sequence tags to the cattle genome. Of the markers, 25 were placed on the USDA reference linkage map and 37 were positioned on the Roslin 3000-rad radiation hybrid (RH) map, with 20 assignments shared between the maps. Although no novel regions of conserved synteny between the cattle and the human genomes were identified, the coverage was extended for bovine chromosomes 3, 7, 15, and 29 compared with previously published comparative maps between human and bovine genomes. Overall, these data improve the resolution of the human-bovine comparative maps and will assist future efforts to integrate bovine RH and linkage map data. 151|In our previous genome-wide scan of Finnish nuclear families, obesity was linked to chromosome Xq24. Here we analyzed this 15-Mb region by genotyping 9 microsatellite markers and 36 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for 11 positional and functional candidate genes in an extended sample of 218 obese Finnish sibling pairs (sibpairs) (BMI > 30 kg/m2). Evidence of linkage emerged mainly from the obese male sibpairs, suggesting a gender-specific effect for the underlying gene. By constructing haplotypes among the obese male sibpairs, we restricted the region from 15 Mb to 4 Mb, between markers DXS8088 and DXS8067. Regional functional candidate genes were tested for association in an initial sample of 117 cases and 182 controls. Significant evidence was observed for association for an SNP in the 3'-untranslated region of the solute carrier family 6 member 14 (SLC6A14) gene (P = 0.0002) and for SNP haplotypes of the SLC6A14 gene (P = 0.0007-0.006). Furthermore, an independent replication study sample of 837 cases and 968 controls from Finland and Sweden also showed significant differences in allele frequencies between obese and non-obese individuals (P = 0.003). The SLC6A14 gene is an interesting novel candidate for obesity because it encodes an amino acid transporter, which potentially regulates tryptophan availability for serotonin synthesis and thus possibly affects appetite control. 152|Autosomal recessive limb-girdle muscular dystrophy linked to 19q13.3 (LGMD2I) was recently related to mutations in the fukutin-related protein gene (FKRP) gene. Pathogenic changes in the same gene were detected in congenital muscular dystrophy patients (MDC1C), a severe disorder. We have screened 86 LGMD genealogies to assess the frequency and distribution of mutations in the FKRP gene in Brazilian LGMD patients. We found 13 Brazilian genealogies, including 20 individuals with mutations in the FKRP gene, and identified nine novel pathogenic changes. The commonest C826A European mutation was found in 30% (9/26) of the mutated LGMD2I alleles. One affected patient homozygous for the FKRP (C826A) mutation also carries a missense R125H change in one allele of the caveolin-3 gene (responsible for LGMD1C muscular dystrophy). Two of her normal sibs were found to be double heterozygotes. In two unrelated LGMD2I families, homozygous for novel missense mutations, we identified four asymptomatic carriers, all older than 20 years. Genotype-phenotype correlation studies in the present study as well as in patients from different populations suggests that the spectrum of variability associated with mutations in the FKRP gene seems to be wider than in other forms of LGMD. It also reinforces the observations that pathogenic mutations are not always determinant of an abnormal phenotype, suggesting the possibility of other mechanisms modulating the severity of the phenotype that opens new avenues for therapeutic approaches. 153|We undertook a genomewide linkage study in a total of 353 affected sib pairs (ASPs) with schizophrenia. Our sample consisted of 179 ASPs from the United Kingdom, 134 from Sweden, and 40 from the United States. We typed 372 microsatellite markers at approximately 10-cM intervals. Our strongest finding was a LOD score of 3.87 on chromosome 10q25.3-q26.3, with positive results being contributed by all three samples and a LOD-1 interval of 15 cM. This finding achieved genomewide significance (P<.05), on the basis of simulation studies. We also found two regions, 17p11.2-q25.1 (maximum LOD score [MLS] = 3.35) and 22q11 (MLS = 2.29), in which the evidence for linkage was highly suggestive. Linkage to all of these regions has been supported by other studies. Moreover, we found strong evidence for linkage (genomewide P<.02) to 17p11.2-q25.1 in a single pedigree with schizophrenia. In our view, the evidence is now sufficiently compelling to undertake detailed mapping studies of these three regions. 154|Telomeric DNA is composed of a region of duplex telomeric tract followed by a single-strand overhang on the 3' G-rich strand. The DNA is packaged by proteins that associate directly with the single- and double-strand regions of the telomeric tract and by their associated proteins. This review discusses the evidence that G-strand overhangs are present on both ends of eukaryotic chromosomes and the steps needed to generate these overhangs. The overhangs are protected by specialized G-overhang-binding protein and/or invasion by the overhang of the duplex region of the telomeric tract to form a structure called a 't-loop'. The G-overhang-binding proteins identified from different species are described, and their properties compared. The data supporting the existence of t-loops at native telomeres is discussed, and the conditions required to promote their in vitro formation are presented. 155|We applied a dual-color interphase in situ fluorescence hybridization (I-FISH) technique using centromeric probes specific to chromosomes 7 and 8 on 20 control samples in order to define the statistical model best suited to determine cutoff values for detection of small abnormal clones. We found that the Poisson model is a more appropriate approach than a Gaussian model. Then, based on the analysis of 91 samples from 80 patients with myelocytic malignant hemopathies and either clonal or nonclonal -7 or +8 as determined with conventional cytogenetics (CC), we compared the respective power of I-FISH and CC for detection of aneuploidy, with special emphasis on the potential contribution of I-FISH as a complement to CC in the case of small abnormal clones. The I-FISH results were positive in samples with clonal -7 or +8 according to CC analysis. Whereas I-FISH was negative in samples with nonclonal -7 according to CC, thus confirming the reliability of the criteria used to define the clonality of -7; the situation was different with nonclonal +8. I-FISH revealed the clonality of +8 in most samples with single-cell +8. In several cases, however, the unquestionable clonal nature of +8, as evidenced during follow-up, could not be established with either CC or I-FISH according to accepted criteria. Our data suggest that, in case of a single metaphase with +8, the general rule should be amended and the single-cell +8 should be considered and reported as potentially clonal. 156|OBJECTIVE: To describe cases of trisomy 22 detected prenatally on second-trimester sonography and to review the literature on similar cases, with special emphasis on the prenatal findings and pregnancy outcome. METHODS: We performed follow-up second-trimester sonography and fetal karyotyping on 3 pregnant women who were referred because of abnormal findings on initial second-trimester scans. We also conducted a literature search for other reports of sonographic findings in trisomy 22. RESULTS: Fetal abnormalities shown on sonography included nuchal thickening, mild generalized skin edema, an atrioventricular septal defect, an interventricular septal defect, edema of the scalp, face, and neck, severe left pleural effusion with a marked mediastinal shift, ascites, agenesis of the diaphragm, ambiguous genitalia, a single umbilical artery, bradycardia, a multicystic left kidney, and an absent right kidney. All 3 fetuses had karyotypes indicating trisomy 22. One pregnancy was terminated at the parents' request, and 2 ended in fetal death at 23 and 26 weeks. Our literature search revealed only 1 previous report of second-trimester sonographic diagnosis of trisomy 22. We found 3 other reports describing prenatal diagnosis in the third trimester, but only limited information on the sonographic findings was available. CONCLUSIONS: Second-trimester sonography provides valuable clues for the prenatal diagnosis of several chromosomal disorders, including trisomy 22. Prenatal karyotyping is warranted if fetal growth restriction is detected in the second trimester, especially if associated with congenital defects. 157|Our previous studies demonstrate that introduction of a approximately 70 cM region (now estimated at 63.75 Mb by the Human Genome Project) of human chromosome 12 into the highly metastatic Dunning rat prostate cancer cell line AT6.1 results in >30-fold (>/=90%) reduction in the number of overt metastases in spontaneous metastasis assays. We report the further localization and biological characterization of the metastasis-suppressor activity encoded by a reduced region of chromosome 12. To localize this metastasis-suppressor activity, a panel of AT6.1 microcell hybrids that retain varying portions of human chromosome 12 was constructed and subjected to sequence-tagged site (STS)-based PCR analysis and assessment of in vivo metastatic ability. Data from these complementary approaches localized the metastasis-suppressor activity to a approximately 4.2 Mb portion of human chromosome 12q24.3 comprised of 3 separate regions. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunoblotting were used for differential expression analyses to identify which characterized genes, predicted gene sequences and expressed sequence tags (ESTs) within this region could be responsible for the observed metastasis suppression. Comprehensive in vivo studies showed that suppressed AT6.1-12 hybrids that retain the metastasis-suppressor region on 12q24.3 are capable of arriving at the secondary site, but are not able to persist there. Thus, unlike other metastasis-suppressor genes characterized to date, the metastasis-suppressor gene encoded by this region appears to utilize a different biologic mechanism to suppress the growth of overt metastases at the secondary site. 158|Mobius syndrome is a rare disorder characterized by agenesis or aplasia of the facial or abducens nerve motor nuclei and other features including central nervous system and behavioral abnormalities. We report an adult case of Mobius syndrome variant presenting with poor impulse control, aggression, and exhibitionism. Karyotyping revealed a 46 XY, t(1;13)(p34.3;q12.3) translocation. The subject had been presented 20 years previously as the index case of a three-generation pedigree. 159|The generation, transmission (e.g. power lines, transformers, service wires, and electrical panels), and use (e.g. home appliances, such as electric blankets, shavers, and televisions) of electrical energy is associated with the production of weak electric and magnetic fields (EMF) which oscillate 50 (Europe) or 60 (USA) times per second (power-line frequency), falling in the extremely-low frequency (ELF) region of the electromagnetic spectrum. Epidemiological reports suggest a possible association between exposure to ELF-EMF and an increased risk of cancer (e.g. childhood acute leukaemia). Benzene is an established human leukomogen. This xenobiotic, which is unlikely to be the ultimate carcinogen, is metabolized in the liver to its primary metabolite phenol, which is hydroxylated to hydroquinone (1,4-benzenediol) and 1,2,4-benzenetriol. In this in vitro approach, to test the genotoxic and / or co-genotoxic potency of ELF-EMF, the cytokinesis block micronucleus (MN) method with Jurkat cells has been used. A 50 Hz magnetic field (MF) of 5 mT field strength was applied for different length of time (from 1 to 24 h), either alone or with benzene, 1,4-benzenediol, or 1,2,4-benzenetriol. Our preliminary results show that, after 24 h exposure, the frequency of micronucleated cells in MF-exposed cultures is 1.9 fold higher than in sham-exposed (control) cultures. Benzene exposure does not show any cytogenetic activity, whereas 1,4-benzenediol or 1,2,4-benzenetriol alone significantly affect the number of MN in Jurkat cells, as compared to untreated cultures. Moreover, co-exposure to ELF-MF does not seem to affect the frequency of micronuclei induced by benzene, 1,4-benzenediol, or 1,2,4-benzenetriol. 160|There have been significant advances recently in the understanding of the molecular causes of nephrogenic diabetes insipidus. The resistance of the collecting duct to the action of vasopressin in this disorder results from abnormalities in several of the intricate steps that mediate the increase in principal cell hydraulic conductivity in response to the hormone. In this article, we review the current understanding of the known genetic causes of nephrogenic diabetes insipidus that affect the binding of vasopressin to the V2 receptor and subsequent intracellular signaling events, as well as the translocation of aquaporin-2 water channels to the apical membrane. In addition, genetic diseases, which decrease collecting-duct water absorption by diminishing the interstitial medullary osmolarity, are discussed. 161|Our previous work showed that acquisition of immortality at the dysplasia stage of oral cancer progression was consistently associated with four changes: loss of retinoic acid receptor (RAR)-beta and p16INK4A expression, p53 mutations and activation of telomerase. One atypical dysplasia (D17) that underwent delayed senescence after an extended lifespan showed loss of RAR-beta and p16INK4A/p14ARF expression, but retained functional wild-type p53 and telomerase was not activated. We now demonstrate that retroviral delivery of hTERT results in telomere lengthening and immortalization of D17 without loss of functional wild-type p53 activity. In contrast, the expression of hTERT in two other typical mortal dyplasia cultures (that retain RAR-beta and p16INK4A expression) does not extend their lifespan, even though telomeres are lengthened. 162|At the current state of knowledge, the biological effects both in vitro and in vivo connected to low frequency electromagnetic fields (ELF) are not univocally interpreted. Indeed a lot of literature seems strictly related to the particular experimental procedure depending both on the biological target and the exposure features under consideration. The best studied biological parameters in vitro are kinetics of cell proliferation, change in enzymatic activities, intramembrane ionic flux and integrity of chromosome complement. In general, the study on genotoxic effects induced by simultaneous exposure to electromagnetic fields and known chemical or physical mutagenes is based on the theory that electromagnetic fields may interfere with mutagenic substances rather than affect directly genetic material. In addition, studies in vivo confirm different results both in different animal species and in different (nervous, neuroendocrine, immunitary systems). Finally, in order to evaluate the wide research activity on this subject, we need to take into account the main standard criteria adopted by the world scientific community, such as the peer review process and the confirmation of experimental data by means of independent repetitions. 163|In eukaryotes, motifs such as silencers, enhancers and locus control regions act over thousands of base pairs to regulate adjacent genes; insulators limit such effects, and barriers confine repressive heterochromatin to particular chromosomal segments. Recent results show that many of these motifs are nongenic transcription units, and two of them directly contact their targets lying further down the chromosome to loop the intervening DNA: the barriers (scs and scs') flanking the 87A7 heat-shock locus in the fly contact each other, and a locus control region touches the beta-globin gene in the mouse. I hypothesize that the act of transcription underlies the function of these regulators; active polymerizing complexes tend to cluster into 'factories' and this facilitates molecular contact between the transcribed regulator and its distant (and transcribed) target. 164|Tailor-made medical treatment based on the polymorphism of genes encoding drug-metabolizing enzymes has been advocated and is being tried on an experimental basis at numerous centers. If DNA polymorphism analysis becomes routine in tailor-made medical treatment, it will be very useful in forensic identification. In this study, we determined the genotype frequencies of five p450 (CYP) isoform genes, CYP1A2, CYP2D6, CYP2E1, CYP2C9 and CYP2C19 in 196 Japanese individuals to evaluate their forensic usefulness. These genes encode the most important enzymes among the CYP superfamily that metabolize clinically used drug. The frequency of each allele agreed well with those reported previously and their genotype frequencies did not deviate from those expected from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. CYP2C subfamilies such as CYP2C9 and CYP2C19 on chromosome 10 showed high sequence homology, as high as over 95% in the regions flanking polymorphic sites. Although 3240 genotype combinations of these five CYP isoform genes are theoretically possible, 101 combinations were detected in this study. The genotype frequencies of these five isoform genes excluded their linkage. The following two genotype combinations showed the highest frequency of 0.036: CYP1A2*1A/*1A, CYP2D6*1/*10, CYP2E1*1/*1, CYP2C9*1/*1 and CYP2C19*1/*1 and CYP1A2*1A/*1C, CYP2D6*1/*10, CYP2E1*1/*1, CYP2C9*1/*1 and CYP2C19*1/*1. Thus, genotyping of CYP isoform genes should be useful in forensic identification. 165|BACKGROUND: Cryptic chromosome aberrations, i.e. those that are not observed by routine chromosome analysis (G-banding), can cause a plethora of developmental abnormalities, usually at least a combination of various dysmorphic signs and mental retardation. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We present the current molecular cytogenetic methods for detection of cryptic chromosome aberrations, with special emphasis on comparative genomic hybridisation (CGH), a DNA-based screening method. RESULTS: Using comparative genomic hybridisation with high-resolution analysis, we were able to detect a chromosome aberration in 10 % of patients found to have normal karyotypes by standard chromosome analysis. INTERPRETATION: Though the sensitivity of comparative genomic hybridisation is still insufficient for finding a deletion in most of the well-known microdeletion syndromes, the diagnostic yield of genomic imbalances is better than for all other laboratory investigations except routine G-banding. 166|Cayman ataxia is a recessive congenital ataxia restricted to one area of Grand Cayman Island. Comparative mapping suggested that the locus on 19p13.3 associated with Cayman ataxia might be homologous to the locus on mouse chromosome 10 associated with the recessive ataxic mouse mutant jittery. Screening genes in the region of overlap identified mutations in a novel predicted gene in three mouse jittery alleles, including the first mouse mutation caused by an Alu-related (B1 element) insertion. We found two mutations exclusively in all individuals with Cayman ataxia. The gene ATCAY or Atcay encodes a neuron-restricted protein called caytaxin. Caytaxin contains a CRAL-TRIO motif common to proteins that bind small lipophilic molecules. Mutations in another protein containing a CRAL-TRIO domain, alpha-tocopherol transfer protein (TTPA), cause a vitamin E-responsive ataxia. Three-dimensional protein structural modeling predicts that the caytaxin ligand is more polar than vitamin E. Identification of the caytaxin ligand may help develop a therapy for Cayman ataxia. 167|PURPOSE: To examine the effects of soft contact lenses on tear breakup time (TBUT), basal Schirmer test result, and the conjunctival surface in patients wearing contact lenses. METHODS: In this study, conjunctival cytologic changes, TBUT, and Schirmer test function alterations of soft contact lens wearers were evaluated by impression cytology. The study included 100 eyes of 50 soft contact lens wearers who were followed up in the Department of Ophthalmology of Dicle University and 80 eyes of 40 subjects as a control group. After TBUT and basal Schirmer test, conjunctival surface epithelial morphology was investigated using impression cytology. After the materials were appropriately stained, they were evaluated according to the Nelson grading scale. RESULTS: Contact lens wearers were divided into three groups according to the duration of contact lens wear. When these groups were evaluated according to the Nelson grading method, 21% of cases were grade 0; 32% were grade 1; and 28% were grade 3. There were statistically significant differences in epithelial cell morphology, goblet cell density, snakelike chromatin changes, TBUT, and basal Schirmer test result between the control and study groups. CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that TBUT and Schirmer test result be carefully monitored in contact lens wearers. Impression cytology may be used as a safe, simple, and noninvasive method in the diagnosis of ocular surface alternations in patients with contact lens intolerance. 168|The distal short arm of chromosome 1 is commonly deleted in a variety of human neoplasms including gastrointestinal cancer. Genetic alterations of the retinoblastoma protein-interacting zing-finger gene (RIZ)1 including loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at 1p36, frameshift mutations, and promoter hypermethylation were reported previously in several cancers. In this study, we evaluated RIZ1 in 30 primary gastric cancers and found frameshift mutations in two cases (6.7%). Moreover, using real-time quantitative methylation-specific PCR, methylation of the RIZ1 promoter was detected in 11 (37%) cases. In all 11 cases with methylation, inactivation of the second allele occurred through frameshift mutation, LOH or promoter methylation. Our results suggest that RIZ1 is a specific target of inactivation in human gastric cancer. 169|PURPOSE: The prognosis of inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) remains poor despite the use of multimodality treatments, with a 10-year survival rate of not >30%. Clinicopathological and biological predictors of outcome are inadequate in this setting. Analysis of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) can provide a molecular portrait of the genetic alterations underlying stepwise cancer progression. We tested the value of LOH patterns as diagnostic and prognostic markers in IBC. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: In a previous study of 64 patients with IBC who were treated homogeneously between 1988 and 1999, we determined LOH frequencies at 71 loci located in 20 chromosomal regions associated with primary breast cancer. Six of these regions bore alterations that were less frequent in non-IBC. In the present study, we sought correlations between these molecular data and the clinicopathological features and clinical outcome of the same 64 patients. RESULTS: With the exception of stage IV disease, extensive breast inflammation at first clinical examination was the main factor associated with poor outcome (P = 0.00065 versus localized inflammation). The overall frequency of LOH was also higher in this group (P = 0.000073). LOH patterns differed between patients with localized and extensive breast inflammation. CONCLUSION: Patients with IBC can be separated into two major prognostic groups on the basis of initial clinical signs, which appear to be subtended by different molecular alterations. 170|Recently, a putative functional polymorphism (-141C Ins/Del) in the 5'-flanking region of the dopamine D2 receptor was found. An association of the Ins allele with schizophrenia has been described in a Japanese sample. In the present study this association was examined in a German schizophrenia patient population. In a family based approach 190 German family trios were analyzed for the -141C Ins/Del genotype. Using the transmission disequilibrium test (TDT) we found no evidence for an association of the Ins allele with schizophrenia (TDT = 0.152, P = 0.696). In parallel, we performed an independent case control study with 268 schizophrenic patients and 244 controls. Again, we did not detect an overrepresentation of the Ins allele in patients (P = 0.124). Thus, our data do not support the hypothesis that the -141C Ins variant plays a major role in predisposition to schizophrenia. To confirm our conclusion further preferentially family based studies are needed. 171|BACKGROUND: Cytosolic aldehyde dehydrogenase, or ALDH1A1, functions in ethanol detoxification, metabolism of neurotransmitters, and synthesis of retinoic acid. Because the promoter region of a gene can influence gene expression, the ALDH1A1 promoter regions were studied to identify polymorphism, to assess their functional significance, and to determine whether they were associated with a risk for developing alcoholism. METHODS: Sequence analysis was performed in the promoter region by using Asian, Caucasian, and African American subjects. The resulting polymorphisms were assessed for frequency in Asian, Caucasian, Jewish, and African American populations and tested for associations with alcohol dependence in Asian and African American populations of alcoholics and controls. The functional significance of each polymorphism was determined through in vitro expression analysis by using HeLa and HepG2 cells. RESULTS: Two polymorphisms, a 17 base pair (bp) deletion (-416/-432) and a 3 bp insertion (-524), were discovered in the ALDH1A1 promoter region: ALDH1A1*2 and ALDH1A1*3, respectively. ALDH1A1*2 was observed at frequencies of 0.035, 0.023, 0.023, and 0.012 in the Asian, Caucasian, Jewish, and African American populations, respectively. ALDH1A1*3 was observed only in the African American population, at a frequency of 0.029. By using HeLa and HepG2 cells for in vitro expression, the activity of the luciferase reporter gene was significantly decreased after transient transfection of ALDH1A1*3-luciferase compared with the wild-type construct ALDH1A1*1-luciferase. In an African American population, a trend for higher frequencies of the ALDH1A1*2 and ALDH1A1*3 alleles was observed in a population of alcoholics (p = 0.03 and f = 0.12, respectively) compared with the control population. CONCLUSIONS: ALDH1A1*2 and ALDH1A1*3 may influence ALDH1A1 gene expression. Both ALDH1A1*2 and ALDH1A1*3 produce a trend in an African American population that may be indicative of an association with alcoholism; however, more samples are required to validate this observation. The underlying mechanisms contributing to these trends are still unknown. 172|INTRODUCTION: The purpose of this study was to determine the frequency of translocations and insertions in the blood of long-term pilots in relation to estimated cumulative radiation dose received while flying, and to compare that to the frequency in a group of similarly aged men without a history of frequent airline travel. METHODS: Healthy, non-smoking male pilots aged 40-60 yr were recruited from a single airline. Non-pilot controls were recruited from healthy, non-smoking professional males in the same age range and without a history of frequent flying. Eligibility was determined based on screening surveys. Career pilot radiation doses were calculated individually using airline flight profiles, personal flight history, and the CARI computer program. Translocation frequency was determined using fluorescence in situ hybridization. RESULTS: Blood samples for chromosome analysis were provided by 19 individuals. The mean number of metaphases counted per subject was 2802 in the pilots and 3000 in the controls. The mean number of translocations per cell (genome equivalent) was significantly higher among the pilots (mean +/- SE; 0.0031 +/- 0.0008) than among the controls (0.0010 +/- 0.0003) (p = 0.03, Mann-Whitney U test). However, within the 26 to 72 millisievert range encountered in this study, observed values among the pilots did not follow the dose-response pattern expected based on available models for chronic low dose radiation exposure. CONCLUSIONS: There was a statistically significant higher number of translocations per cell among pilots than among controls, although the expected dose-response relationship for radiation was not observed among the pilots. 173|BACKGROUND: Hyperparathyroidism is a common endocrinopathy characterised by the formation of parathyroid tumours. In this study, we determine the role of the recently identified gene, HRPT2, in parathyroid tumorigenesis. METHODS: Mutation analysis of HRPT2 was undertaken in 60 parathyroid tumours: five HPT-JT, three FIHP, three MEN 1, one MEN 2A, 25 sporadic adenomas, 17 hyperplastic glands, two lithium associated tumours, and four sporadic carcinomas. Loss of heterozygosity at 1q24-32 was performed on a subset of these tumours. RESULTS: HRPT2 somatic mutations were detected in four of four sporadic parathyroid carcinoma samples, and germline mutations were found in five of five HPT-JT parathyroid tumours (two families) and two parathyroid tumours from one FIHP family. One HPT-JT tumour with germline mutation also harboured a somatic mutation. In total, seven novel and one previously reported mutation were identified. "Two-hits" (double mutations or one mutation and loss of heterozygosity at 1q24-32) affecting HRPT2 were found in two sporadic carcinomas, two HPT-JT-related and two FIHP related tumours. CONCLUSIONS: The results in this study support the role of HRPT2 as a tumour suppressor gene in sporadic parathyroid carcinoma, and provide further evidence for HRPT2 as the causative gene in HPT-JT, and a subset of FIHP. In light of the strong association between mutations of HRPT2 and sporadic parathyroid carcinoma demonstrated in this study, it is hypothesised that HRPT2 mutation is an early event that may lead to parathyroid malignancy and suggest intragenic mutation of HRPT2 as a marker of malignant potential in both familial and sporadic parathyroid tumours. 174|Many human chromosomal abnormality syndromes include specific cognitive and behavioural components. Children with Prader-Willi syndrome lack a paternally derived copy of the proximal long arm of chromosome 15, and eat uncontrollably; in Angelman syndrome lack of a maternal contribution of 15q11-q13 results in absence of speech, frequent smiling and episodes of paroxysmal laughter; deletions on 22q11 can be associated with obsessive behaviour and schizophrenia. The neurodevelopmental disorder Williams-Beuren syndrome (WBS), is caused by a microdeletion at 7q11.23 and provides us with one of the most convincing models of a relationship that links genes with human cognition and behaviour. The hypothesis is that deletion of one or a series of genes causes neurodevelopmental abnormalities that manifest as the fractionation of mental abilities typical of WBS. Detailed molecular characterization of the deletion alongside well-defined cognitive profiling in WBS provides a unique opportunity to investigate the neuromolecular basis of complex cognitive behaviour, and develop integrated approaches to study gene function and genotype-phenotype correlations. 175|Progress in our understanding of the molecular basis of heritable diseases, through identification of specific mutations, has provided a foundation for the development of DNA-based prenatal diagnosis. Genetic analysis of fetal DNA is now routinely performed from chorionic villus samples obtained as early as the tenth week of gestation or by amniocentesis from week 15 onwards. However, both of these approaches involve invasive procedures with increased risk of fetal loss. To avoid such complications, attempts have been made to develop non-invasive tests through the identification, characterization and isolation of fetal cells or free fetal DNA from the maternal circulation. Recently, progress has been made towards the development of novel strategies that are expected to provide non-invasive means for early prenatal diagnosis in pregnancy. 176|Analyses of mtDNA and Y-chromosome variation were performed in a sample of Iraqis, a scarcely investigated population of the "Fertile Crescent." A total of 216 mtDNAs were screened for the diagnostic RFLP markers of the main Eurasian and African haplogroups. A subset of these samples, whose HVS-I sequences were previously obtained, was also examined by high-resolution restriction analysis. The Y-chromosome variation was investigated in 139 subjects by using 17 biallelic markers and the 49a,f/Taq I system. For both uniparental systems, the large majority of the haplogroups observed in the Iraqi population are those (H, J, T, and U for the mtDNA, and J(xM172) and J-M172 for the Y chromosome) considered to have originated in the Middle East and to have later spread all over Western Eurasia. However, about 9% of the mtDNAs and 30% of the Y-chromosomes most likely represent arrivals from distant geographic regions. The different proportion of long-range genetic input observed for the mtDNA and the Y chromosome appears to indicate that events of gene flow to this area might have involved mainly males rather than females. 177|OBJECTIVE: To analyse patient data to elucidate the apparent association between an abnormal karyotype and tricuspid regurgitation found during fetal echocardiography at early gestations. SETTING: Tertiary referral centre for fetal medicine and cardiology. METHODS: Fetuses between 11 and 14 weeks' gestation were selected for detailed echocardiography. Referral reasons were increased nuchal translucency, a suspected cardiac or extracardiac malformation, and a family history of cardiac malformation. INTERVENTION: The fetus was imaged transabdominally. The four chamber view, outflow tracts, arterial duct, and aortic arch were assessed on cross sectional imaging and colour flow mapping. Pulsed Doppler of the atrioventricular valves was recorded if possible. Subsequently, the fetal karyotype was ascertained by chorionic villous sampling. RESULTS: Pulsed Doppler recording of the tricuspid valve was obtained for 262 fetuses. Tricuspid regurgitation was present in 70 (27%) of these, of whom 58 (83%) proved to have karyotype anomalies. In contrast, 68 (35%) of those without tricuspid regurgitation were found to have karyotype anomalies (95% confidence interval 36% to 59%, p < 0.001). Structural heart defects were detected in 34 of the 58 (59%) with tricuspid regurgitation and in 22 (32%) of those without. The chromosome defect most frequently found to be associated with tricuspid regurgitation was trisomy 21, but all types of karyotypic anomalies were seen in association. CONCLUSION: A careful search for tricuspid regurgitation is an important aspect of the evaluation of the early fetus, as this is frequently a marker for chromosomal defects even in the absence of structural heart disease. 178|We propose a method to analyze haplotype effects using ideas derived from Bayesian spatial statistics. We assume that two haplotypes that are similar to one another in structure are likely to have similar risks, and define a distance metric to specify the appropriate level of closeness between the two haplotypes. Through the choice of distance metric, varying levels of population genetics theory can be incorporated into the modeling process, including some that allow estimation of the location of the disease causing mutation(s). This location can be estimated, along with the other parameters of the model, using Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) estimation methods. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the model on two real datasets, a well-known dataset used to fine-map the gene for cystic fibrosis, and one used to localize the gene for Friedreich's ataxia. 179|Huntington's disease (HD) is a chronic neurodegenerative disorder, characterized by the following triad of clinical hallmarks: chorea, cognitive impairment and behavior disorders [8]. In 1993 the gene responsible for HD, whose mutation results in HD, was identified and mapped on the chromosome 4p16.3 [6]. The mutation is a characteristic expansion of a CAG nucleotide triplet. In this paper we present a 36-years-old female patient with HD who was submitted to a complete diagnostic procedure including genetic testing. Her pedigree was reconstructed using available medical documentation and tracing other members of her family. 180|OBJECTIVES: To confirm previous whole-genome scan results of mapping type 2 diabetes susceptibility genes in chromosome 1 in Northern Chinese Han population by conducting a new genome scan with both an enlarged number of type 2 diabetes families and a new set of microsatellite markers. METHODS: A genome scan method was applied. After multiplexed PCR, electrophoreses, genescan and genotyping analysis, size informations for all loci were obtained, and a further study was done using both parametric and non-parametric linkage analysis to calculate the P-values and Z-values of these loci. RESULTS: A total of 34 microsatellite markers distributed within 5 regions along chromosome 1 were surveyed, and 12,000 genotypes were screened. Evidence of linkage with diabetes was identified for 8 of the 34 loci (all the P-values of the 8 loci distributed in 3 regions were lower than 0.05, and the highest Z-value was 2.17). Interestingly, all the 5 markers at the P terminal 1p36.3-1p36.23 region, spanning a long range of 16.9 cM, suggested to be linked with the disease. The results of the other two regions were not consistent with the previous ones. CONCLUSIONS: The study results have confirmed those gained in the previous genome-wide scan. The fact that all 5 loci at the P terminal region displayed linkage with diabetes suggests that more than 1 susceptibility gene may reside in this region. 181|OBJECTIVE: To estimate the prevalence, incidence, survival, and disease characteristics of systemic sclerosis (SSc) in the Detroit tricounty area. METHODS: A census of SSc cases for the period 1989-1991 was conducted in the Detroit area, using multiple sources for case identification. Diagnoses were verified by medical record review. Capture-recapture analysis was used to estimate the total SSc population. Cases of localized scleroderma (morphea and linear disease) were excluded. RESULTS: Based on 706 verified cases of SSc, prevalence was initially estimated to be 242.0 cases per million adults (95% confidence interval [95% CI] 213-274), with an annual incidence of 19.3 new cases per million adults per year (95% CI 12.4-30.2). Capture-recapture analysis, based on the degree of overlap of verified cases among multiple sources, resulted in a revised prevalence estimate of 276 cases per million adults (95% CI 245-310). Sex- and race-specific prevalence estimates were significantly higher for women than for men, and for blacks than for whites. The average age at diagnosis was significantly younger for blacks than for whites. Compared with white patients, black patients were almost twice as likely to have diffuse disease (prevalence proportion ratio 1.86, 95% CI 1.48-2.35). Median survival was approximately 11 years. Factors negatively affecting survival included male sex (hazard ratio 1.81, 95% CI 1.29-2.55) and older age at diagnosis (hazard ratio 1.04, 95% CI 1.03-1.05). CONCLUSION: This study establishes baseline estimates of SSc occurrence and characteristics in a large US cohort consisting primarily of black adults and white adults. These data should facilitate research regarding the role of geographic, ethnic, racial, and environmental factors for this disease in comparison populations. 182|The core-binding factor (CBF) leukemias are the subtype of acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) associated with the highest response to therapy and longest remission duration. Although CBF leukemias have two distinctly different morphologic and clinical presentations (i.e., AML M2 and AML M4eo), their molecular pathophysiology is linked by their abnormalities in different subunits of CBF, a transcription factor important in several pathways in hematopoietic cells. This article summarizes the recent biologic and clinical advances made in the treatment of these diseases. 183|Congenital cataracts are a common cause of preventable blindness in children. We studied autosomal dominant congenital cataracts in 38 families and examined linkage between cataract loci and the crystallin genes on chromosomes 2, 11, 17, 21, and 22. We used clinical information to group families with phenotypically similar cataracts and analyzed the genetic data in these groups. Although LOD scores > 3.0 were not obtained, we found some support for linkage to four of the chromosomal regions examined, namely 2q33-35, 17q11.2-12, 21q22.3, and 22q11.2. 184|Mice and humans are at opposite ends of the mammalian spectrum of longevity. A major question in biology is whether this difference can be accounted for by differences in the properties of cells from these two species. A new publication from Judith Campisi's lab reports that human cells in culture are more resistant than mouse cells to the damaging effects of 20% oxygen. The greater burden of DNA damage sustained by mouse cells causes them to rapidly enter a phase of culture in which most cells enter permanent growth arrest (replicative senescence). However, some mouse cells usually escape from senescence and then grow into an immortal cell line. This never happens in human fibroblast cell cultures. Human cells also eventually enter replicative senescence in culture, but this phenomenon is caused by shortening of telomeres and not by DNA damage of the type responsible for mouse cell senescence. Human fibroblasts never spontaneously escape from senescence. This Perspective reviews differences between mouse and human cells that could account for these differences in behavior. Some evidence indicates that human cells are generally more resistant than mouse cells to oxidative damage to DNA, but more needs to be done to confirm this finding and to understand the underlying mechanisms. Whether or not there are differences in the amount of DNA damage caused by oxygen or in the early phase of repair, there may be important differences in the later consequences of DNA damage. Mouse cells appear to be able to continue to divide with DNA damage that has not been repaired or has been misrepaired, and becomes fixed in the form of chromosomal abnormalities. The checkpoints that cause cells to stop dividing when chromosomes develop abnormalities (aberrations or shortened telomeres) appear to operate more efficiently in human cells. Much more work is needed to understand the basis for these differences and the implications for aging and cancer. 185|Altered neuronal endocytosis is the earliest known pathology in sporadic Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Down syndrome (DS) brain and has been linked to increased Abeta production. Here, we show that a genetic model of DS (trisomy 21), the segmental trisomy 16 mouse Ts65Dn, develops enlarged neuronal early endosomes, increased immunoreactivity for markers of endosome fusion (rab5, early endosomal antigen 1, and rabaptin5), and endosome recycling (rab4) similar to those in AD and DS individuals. These abnormalities are most prominent in neurons of the basal forebrain, which later develop aging-related atrophy and degenerative changes, as in AD and DS. We also show that App, one of the triplicated genes in Ts65Dn mice and human DS, is critical to the development of these endocytic abnormalities. Selectively deleting one copy of App or a small portion of the chromosome 16 segment containing App from Ts65Dn mice eliminated the endosomal phenotype. Overexpressing App at high levels in mice did not alter early endosomes, implying that one or more additional genes on the triplicated segment of chromosome 16 are also required for the Ts65Dn endosomal phenotype. These results identify an essential role for App gene triplication in causing AD-related endosomal abnormalities and further establish the pathogenic significance of endosomal dysfunction in AD. 186|Neuroblastoma is one of the most common solid tumors of childhood. Despite the most recent advances in combined therapy, the overall survival of patients with disseminated disease has not improved in the last 20 years. On the contrary, the increased knowledge of the genetic and molecular abnormalities that characterize neuroblastoma allowed the identification of several important prognostic factors and possible pathways of neuroblastoma development. Moreover, several other structural and numerical non-random chromosome abnormalities were recognized by comparative genomic hybridization and their role is actively investigated. More recently, it has become evident also that epigenetic factors may alter the pattern of expression of multiple genes whose role in neuroblastoma begins to be understood. It is thus likely that a combination of events that include gene translocation and rearrangement and the altered methylation of crucial genes, contribute to neuroblastoma development and progression and are likely responsible for the clinical heterogeneity of this tumor. 187|The pig delta gene is located approximately 3.4 kb downstream of the second transmembrane exon of the micro gene and shows a similar genomic structure to its counterpart in cow with three exons encoding the CH1, CH2, and CH3 domains. The porcine genomic deltaCH1 exon has been replaced by a recent duplication of the micro CH1 and its flanking sequences, a genetic event that also led to the formation of a short switch delta region, immediately upstream of the delta gene. The deltaCH1 exhibits a 98.7% similarity (314 of 318 bp) to the micro CH1 at the DNA level, whereas the homologies between the deltaCH2 and micro CH3, and the deltaCH3 and micro CH4 are only 33.3 and 35.8%, respectively. Either of the two CH1 exons ( micro and delta) could be observed in the expressed porcine IgD H chain cDNA sequences VDJ- micro CH1-H-deltaCH2-deltaCH3 or VDJ-deltaCH1-H-deltaCH2-deltaCH3, showing a pattern that has not been observed previously in vertebrates. In addition, transfection of a human B cell line, using artificial constructs resembling the porcine C micro -Cdelta locus, also generated both VDJ- micro CH1-deltaCH1-H1-deltaCH2 and VDJ -deltaCH1-H1-deltaCH2 transcripts. An examination of the pig delta genomic sequence shows a putative, second hinge region-encoding exon. Due to the lack of a normal branchpoint sequence for RNA splicing, this exon is not present in the normal pig delta cDNA. However, the exon could be spliced into most of the expressed transcripts in vitro in cell transfection experiments after introduction of a single T nucleotide to restore the branchpoint sequence upstream of the putative H2 exon. 188|We diagnosed Pallister-Mosaic syndrome (PMS) in a 4-month-old female infant. In addition to the presence of non-specific anomalies, involving anorectal, finger and ear anomalies, characteristic cranio-facial features and irregular skin lesions that appeared after age 2 months suggested the possibility of genetic mosaicism, PMS in particular. Fluorescence in situ hybridization technique revealed an extra copy of chromosome 12p; i (12p) in 30% of cultured skin fibroblasts. When focal skin lesions accompany neurodevelopmental disabilities in early infancy, genetic analysis for mosaicism should be considered for differential diagnosis. Significantly, we describe several phenotypic features and neuroimaging findings of the PMS in the present case, which have not been described in previous reports. The neuroimaging abnormalities we encountered, such as polymicrogyria, speculating congenital brain anomaly, may explain the severe motor and intellectual disabilities of PMS. 189|The analysis of chromosomal abnormalities is important for the study of hematological neoplastic disorders since it facilitates classification of the disease. The ability to perform chromosome analysis of cryopreserved malignant marrow or peripheral blast cells is important for retrospective studies. In the present study, we compared the karyotype of fresh bone marrow cells (20 metaphases) to that of cells stored with a simplified cryopreservation method, evaluated the effect of the use of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) as an in vitro mitotic index stimulator, and compared the cell viability and chromosome morphology of fresh and cryopreserved cells whenever possible (sufficient metaphases for analysis). Twenty-five bone marrow samples from 24 patients with hematological disorders such as acute myeloid leukemia, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, chronic myeloid leukemia, megaloblastic anemia and lymphoma (8, 3, 3, 8, 1, and 1 patients, respectively) were selected at diagnosis, at relapse or during routine follow-up and one sample was obtained from a bone marrow donor after informed consent. Average cell viability before and after freezing was 98.8 and 78.5%, respectively (P < 0.05). Cytogenetic analysis was successful in 76% of fresh cell cultures, as opposed to 52% of cryopreserved samples (P < 0.05). GM-CSF had no proliferative effect before or after freezing. The morphological aspects of the chromosomes in fresh and cryopreserved cells were subjectively the same. The present study shows that cytogenetic analysis of cryopreserved bone marrow cells can be a reliable alternative when fresh cell analysis cannot be done, notwithstanding the reduced viability and lower percent of successful analysis that are associated with freezing. 190|A comprehensive hematological and molecular analysis of 57 beta thalassemic heterozygotes, 28 homozygotes, 18 double heterozygotes, 3 compound heterozygotes beta thal/beta S and one compound heterozygote beta thal/Hb Newcastle, in 46 Moroccan families with at least one beta thalassemia patient is reported. Six major mutations: beta(0)39 (C-->T), beta(0)FsCD8(-AA), beta(+)IVS1,nt6 (T-->C) and beta(0)IVS1,nt1 (G-->A), beta(0)FsCD6 (-A) and beta(+)-29 (A-->G) cap site account for 75% of the 86 independent beta thal chromosomes studied. For the first time, an extensive mutation/haplotype study has been performed on the Moroccan population, and data are consistent with the geographical location of the country and historical links with both the Mediterranean and the Sub-Saharan Africa communities. Despite the heterogeneous spectrum of mutations, good genetic counseling can be offered to the carrier population. This study focuses on the analysis of fetal hemoglobin levels in beta thalassemic heterozygotes and its correlation with beta globin cluster polymorphic markers in this population. Fetal hemoglobin levels in heterozygotes vary from trace quantities to 17.9% (2.38 g/dl) of total hemoglobin in the adult. No statistically significant correlation was found, either between genders and HbF levels, or between the mutation and the HbF level, with the exception of mutation beta(0)FSCD6(-A). We have examined the alpha globin genotype and the beta globin genotype of heterozygotes, namely, the extended haplotype, which includes the XmnI site at -158 bp of the Ggamma gene and the microsatellite (AT)(x)T(y) at -540 bp of the beta globin gene. In this sample, we confirm the existence of linkage disequilibrium between the C-->T variation at -158 bp of Ggamma globin gene (XmnI(+)) and Orkin's haplotypes III, IV, or IX (the 5' subhaplotype class A). At 5' beta globin gene, we observe exclusively the allele (AT)(7)T(7). In the beta thalassemic heterozygotes studied, no correlation of those genetic markers with HbF levels is observed. 191|The Mohr-Tranebjaerg syndrome (MTS) is a rare neurodegenerative disorder characterized by early-onset deafness, dystonia and further neurological abnormalities such as cortical blindness, spasticity, dementia and mental retardation. Causative mutations were identified within the deafness-dystonia peptide (DDP1/TIMM8a) gene on the X-chromosome. The DDP1 protein is located in the intermembrane space of human mitochondria. Here, it acts in a complex together with its partner protein Tim13 in a chaperone-like manner to facilitate the import of nuclear-encoded precursor proteins into the mitochondrial inner membrane. Thus, MTS is a novel type of mitochondrial disorder. To obtain more insight into the pathophysiology of this neurodegenerative disorder, we performed for the first time a comprehensive clinical and functional characterization of a patient suffering from MTS. This patient exhibited a typical combination of deafness, dystonia and visual loss. Sequence analysis of the patient's DDP1 gene revealed a G to C transversion at nucleotide position 38 of the first exon. The mutation affects the ATG start codon, thereby changing methionine to isoleucine (M1I), and leads to a complete absence of the DDP1 protein. In addition, the partner protein Tim13 was found to be significantly reduced, suggesting that Tim13 requires the presence of DDP1 for its stabilization. The assessment of mitochondrial functions showed the enzyme activities of the mitochondrial energy-generating systems to be normal in the muscle biopsy. Structural abnormalities or aggregations of mitochondria were absent. Electron microscopy revealed only a mild neurogenic atrophy. Neurophysiological investigations showed cochlear dysfunction and disturbance of visual pathways. PET and MRI studies revealed a multifocal pattern of neurodegeneration with hypometabolic areas predominantly located over the right striatum and parietal cortex and marked atrophy of the occipital lobes. Although the visual loss is caused predominantly by neurodegeneration of the visual cortex, degeneration of the retina and the optic nerve contributes to the visual impairment. The pathological changes in basal ganglia and sensory cortex demonstrate the disintegration of subcortico-cortical circuits and correlate well with the clinical presentation of multifocal dystonia. The data presented here showed that, in contrast to most of the known mitochondrial disorders, MTS appears not to be associated with a functional defect of the energy generation system of the mitochondria. Whereas the specific mitochondrial dysfunction leading to neuronal loss in MTS remains to be clarified, the electrophysiological and neuroimaging findings allowed the multifocal manifestation of neurodegenerative lesions in MTS to be characterized specifically. 192|Spinocerebellar ataxia type 4 (SCA4) is an autosomal dominant disorder mapped to chromosome 16q22.1 in a large Utah kindred. The clinical phenotype is characterized by cerebellar ataxia with sensory neuropathy. We describe a five-generation family from northern Germany with similar clinical findings linked to the same locus. Haplotype analyses refined the gene locus to a 3.69 cM interval between D16S3019 and D16S512. Analysis of nine CAG/CTG tracts in this region revealed no evidence for a repeat expansion. 193|A number of genes are known to control the development of the testis but the transcription factor SRY encoded on the Y-chromosome is considered to play the major role in initiating the first step in determining testicular differentiation. Mutations in this gene usually result in gonadal dysgenesis, but it is interesting to note that at least three of these mutations have been found to be familial. Furthermore, fewer than 10% of true hermaphrodites carry an XY karyotype, and so far only two patients have been documented to carry a mutation in the SRY gene. We have identified a familial mutation in the SRY gene involving a previously described locus. The index patient was born with severely ambiguous genitalia and on histological examination the gonads revealed true hermaphroditism, containing ovarian as well as testicular tissue. The father, his three brothers, and his first-born son carry the identical mutation. The severely feminized XY individual was diagnosed shortly after birth, gonadectomized and raised as female. SRY was determined by PCR and subsequently sequenced using cycle sequencing. A previously published point mutation was identified at nucleotide position 680 resulting in a non-conservative exchange of the amino acid iso-leucine at position 90 into methionine. This position represents a mutational 'hot spot', which seems to retain a certain amount of protein activity, enabling normal male development in some individuals. The patient is the third one reported in whom a mutation in the SRY gene results in ovarian-like development. Since ovarian development in XY individuals is extremely rare, its mechanism is of great interest. Further studies in this family might allow the identification of factors initiating and stimulating ovarian development. How far these infantile ovaries would have developed normally, however, is merely speculative. 194|Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a disease that is characterized by fibroblast accumulation and activation in the distal airspaces of the lung. We hypothesized that fibrotic lung fibroblasts migrate/invade across basement membranes by integrin-mediated mechanisms as a means of entering alveoli. We demonstrate that in lung fibroblasts derived from patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, fibronectin signaling is both necessary and sufficient for basement membrane migration/invasion across basement membranes. This effect is mediated through the alpha5beta1 integrin because blockade of fibronectin-alpha5 integrin ligation attenuated this response. In contrast, ligation of alpha4beta1 integrin inhibits basement membrane invasion by normal lung fibroblasts but not by fibrotic lung fibroblasts. This phenotypic difference is not related to surface expression of the alpha4beta1 integrin, as demonstrated by flow cytometry. In normal lung fibroblasts but not in fibrotic lung fibroblasts, we show that ligation of alpha4beta1 integrin induces a significant increase in phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) activity. Fibrotic lung fibroblasts express constitutively less PTEN mRNA and protein as well as phosphatase activity in comparison to normal lung fibroblasts. Together, these data suggest that a loss of alpha4beta1 signaling via PTEN confers a migratory/invasive phenotype to fibrotic lung fibroblasts. Furthermore, this study implicates a loss of PTEN function in the pathophysiology of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. 195|The MST1R (RON) gene, that maps at 3p21.3, encodes a protein tyrosine kinase receptor comprised of an extra-cellular domain that contains the ligand binding pocket and an intracellular region where the kinase domain is located. It controls cell survival and motility programs related to invasive growth. With the single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) method, a C to A nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) was found in intron 18 of the gene. The SNP has a frequency of 0.28 among African-American, 0.25 among Caucasian CEPH and 0.09 among Asian healthy individuals. During these studies, an alternatively spliced cDNA of MST1R, lacking exon 19, was also found that may result from this change. 196|BACKGROUND: Steroid-resistant nephrotic syndrome (SRNS) and congenital anomalies of kidney and urinary tract (CAKUT) are major causes of renal dysfunction in children. Although a few patients with 13q deletion have been previously reported with renal anomalies, the association of SRNS with 13q has not been reported and critical regions associated with CAKUT have not been identified. We present the results of deletion mapping studies to identify the critical regions. METHODS: Cytogenetic and deletion mapping studies were performed on DNA obtained from peripheral blood of two children with renal anomalies and interstitial deletion of 13q as well as their parents. Twenty eight microsatellite markers with a spacing of 1-8 Mb (1-3 cM) were utilized. RESULTS: The patients (both males, 5 and 10 years old) had varying severity of developmental delay and other neurologic disorders. The renal involvement included hydronephrosis, ureterocele, renal dysplasia, and mesangioproliferative SRNS. Our studies imply existence of at least two critical regions in the 13q area that are linked to CAKUT. The first is a 7 Mb region defined by markers D13S776 and D13S891 shared by both patients. The second is a much larger region extending at least 33 Mb above D13S776 seen in one patient with severe renal malformations and SRNS. CONCLUSION: We report an association of chromosome 13q with CAKUT as well as SRNS. Our studies suggest the presence of more than one gene in this region that is likely to be involved in renal development and function. 197|The N279K mutation on the tau gene of chromosome 17 leads to an inherited condition that involves pallido-ponto-nigral degeneration (PPND). Patients with PPND develop dementia, but the pattern and onset of cognitive dysfunction has not yet been delineated. Four affected patients underwent neurocognitive evaluation within the first 2 years of PPND motor onset; one of whom underwent five serial neurocognitive evaluations, and another who was not diagnosed with PPND until the third annual evaluation. Impaired letter fluency was found in the early stages of PPND and was also shown to precede the onset of motor symptoms by 2 years. Trail Making A (visual scanning and motor speed) and Trail Making B (divided attention) were impaired within the first 2 years of the disease in all but one patient, but this individual showed clinically significant decline on these tasks by the third year of the disease. Learning, memory, and timed visuospatial sequencing skills were variably affected. Results reveal disproportionate frontal-executive dysfunction early in PPND disease course, a pattern similar to what has been reported in other FTDP-17 kindreds and in sporadic PSP. In addition, results suggest that letter fluency may be a sensitive predictor of incipient PPND. 198|The most common treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is the alkylating agent chlorambucil (CLB), with or without prednisone. In the present study, our aim was to evaluate whether treatment with CLB for more than one year induced genetic changes manifested by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) as new chromosomal aberrations. We also studied whether CLB affected the pattern of replication by using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). We found a similar rate of asynchronous pattern of replication in both treated and untreated patients with CLL. Most of the aberrations found with CGH were previously reported in CLL. More prognostically unfavorable aberrations and more cases with genetic changes were found in the treated group. The changes found were not typical of the secondary genetic aberrations associated with alkylating agents. Thus, we conclude that treatment of CLL with CLB for at least a year does not affect the parameters analyzed in this study. Longer studies are needed to further explore the effects of alkylating agents on normal and malignant cells. 199|We performed comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) and high-resolution deletion mapping of the long arm of chromosome 2 (2q) in invasive cervical carcinoma (CC). The CGH analyses on 52 CCs identified genetic losses at 2q33-q36, gain of 3q26-q29, and frequent chromosomal amplifications. Characterization of 2q deletions by loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in 60 primary tumors identified two sites of minimal deleted regions at 2q35-q36.1 and 2q36.3-q37.1. To delineate the stage at which these genetic alterations occur in CC progression, we analysed 33 cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) for LOH. We found that 89% of high-grade (CINII and CINIII) and 40% of low-grade (CINI) CINs exhibited LOH at 2q. To identify the target tumor suppressor gene (TSG), we performed an extensive genetic and epigenetic analyses of a number of candidate genes mapped to the deleted regions. We did not find inactivating mutations in CASP10, BARD1, XRCC5, or PPP1R7 genes mapped to the deleted regions. However, we did find evidence of downregulated gene expression in CFLAR, CASP10 and PPP1R7 in CC cell lines. We also found reactivated gene expression in CC cell lines in vitro after exposure to demethylating and histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibiting agents. Thus, these data identify frequent chromosomal amplifications in CC, and sites of TSGs at 2q35-q36.1 and 2q36.3-q37.1 that are critical in CC development. 200|We previously performed a genome-wide linkage study of intracranial aneurysm (IA) and found positive evidence of linkage at chromosomes 5q22-31, 7q11, and 14q22. In the present study, we focus on 5q31, where three candidate genes, fibroblast growth factor 1 (FGF1), fibrillin 2 (FBN2), and lysyl oxidase gene ( LOX) lie, and evaluate associations with IA. Genomic DNAs were obtained from 172 IA patients and 192 controls. Association analysis was performed with ten, five, and four single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) identified in FGF1, FBN2, and LOX, respectively. A difference in allelic frequency was observed for only the SNP at intron 4 in FGF1 (chi(2)=4.44, df=1, P=0.035). Although a haplotype association was observed with the combination of ten SNPs in FGF1 (chi(2)=16.04, df=1, P=0.00006), significant haplotype associations were not observed when haplotypes were constructed with the three, two, and four SNPs in FGF1 according to the linkage disequilibrium structure. No associations of FBN2 and LOX with IA were detected in the present study. 201|Aim of this study was to confirm the initial results of a clinical trial on the treatment of Fabry's disease carried out in 13 Italian Nephrology Units. Fabry's disease is a rare, X-linked inherited disease, characterized by a-galactosidase (a-GAL) deficiency, a lysosomial enzymatic activity that results in the accumulation of neutral glycosphingolipids in the endothelial cells of the whole body, and causes painful crises, acroparesthesiae, angiokeratomas, corneal and lens dystrophy, and progressive damage to kidneys, heart and central nervous system, as well as potentially leading to death. The present availability of the recombinant form of a-GAL allows us to prevent or stop the long-term complications of this disease. A clinical trial, generously supported by Genzyme, was started on February 2001. In this trial 20 patients affected by Fabry's disease were periodically treated with agalsidase-beta, the commercial form of the enzyme. The initial results of the trial have indicated that the drug is capable of reducing both the number and intensity of painful crises, improving the patient's sensation of well-being, thus suggesting that this therapeutic approach might theoretically increase life expectancy in these patients. 202|The CCND1-EMS1 locus on human chromosome 11q13 is amplified in esophageal cancer, bladder tumors, and breast cancer. During analyses of FGF gene cluster within the CCND1-EMS1 locus, we identified a 5'-truncated partial cDNA (NM_018043.1) derived from the uncharacterized FLJ10261 gene. Here, we characterized the FLJ10261 gene by using bioinformatics. NM_018043.1 cDNA corresponded to the nucleotide position 1129-4258 of 4558-bp DKFZp686O1156 cDNA, and the nucleotide position 50-3010 of DKFZ-p686O1156 was the coding region of the FLJ10261 gene. FLJ10261 gene, consisting of 26 exons, was located between FGF3 and FADD genes within the CCND1-EMS1 locus. Two FLJ10261 isoforms with or without exon 15 were transcribed due to alternative splicing. FLJ10261 mRNA was expressed in head and neck tumors, parathyroid tumors, breast, pancreatic, and gastric cancer. Mouse Flj10261 gene (AK052589) was located between Fgf3 and Fadd genes on mouse chromosome 7. Human FLJ10261 gene was homologous to C12orf3 gene on human chromosome 12p13, C11orf25 gene on 11p14, and FLJ34272 gene on 12q23. Human FLJ10261 protein showed 89.8% total-amino-acid identity with mouse Flj10261 protein, and also 58.4%, 38.3%, and 38.6% identity with human C12orf3, C11orf25, and FLJ34272/BAC03704 proteins, respectively. FLJ10261, C12orf3, C11orf25 and FLJ34272 proteins were eight-transmembrane proteins with N- and C-terminal tails facing the cytoplasm, which might function as transporters for unidentified substrates. This is the first report on comprehensive characterization of the FLJ10261 gene located within the CCND1-ORAOV1-FGF19-FGF4-FGF3-FLJ10261-FADD-PPFIA1-EMS1 locus on human chromosome 11q13. 203|Our previous studies utilized a microcell hybrid (MCH) cell line-based functional model of tumor suppression to localize a liver tumor suppressor to human chromosome 11, map the suppressor locus to a <1-Mb region within human 11p11.2, and identify a number of expressed sequence tags (ESTs) and genes that represent candidate liver tumor suppressor genes. The Human Genome Project has recently positioned a number of additional genes, ESTs, and predicted genes within the human 11p11.2 liver tumor suppressor region. In this study, we analyzed 26 ESTs and genes (known and predicted) that have been localized to human 11p11.2. Four of these ESTs/genes (FLJ23598, FLJ10450, KIAA1580, SYT13) mapped to the minimal tumor suppressor region of human 11p11.2, the smallest region conferring suppression of tumorigenicity in the MCH cell lines. Each of these ESTs/genes were expressed among an index panel of suppressed MCH cell lines (derived from GN6TF rat liver tumor cells), suggesting that these ESTs/genes represent excellent candidates for the human 11p11.2 liver tumor suppressor gene. To verify the candidate status of these sequences, 8 additional MCH cell lines (derived from GN3TG and GP10TA rat liver tumor cells) were analyzed. Three ESTs/genes (FLJ23598, FLJ10450, KIAA1580) proved to be less than ideal candidates, based upon their loss from suppressed MCH cell lines (DNA deletion), and/or their retention and expression in a non-suppressed MCH cell line. In contrast, SYT13 is present in the DNA from all suppressed MCH cell lines (n=10), and is deleted in a non-suppressed MCH cell line. Furthermore, SYT13 mRNA is expressed in 100% of suppressed cell lines, and is not expressed in the non-suppressed MCH cell line or in MCH-derived tumor cell lines (n=6). These results suggest that SYT13 is an excellent candidate for the human 11p11.2 liver tumor suppressor gene based upon its: i) location within the human 11p11.2 liver tumor suppressor region; ii) loss from the DNA of a non-suppressed MCH cell line that lacks the human 11p11.2 liver tumor suppressor region; iii) expression among suppressed MCH cell lines; and iv) lack of expression by MCH-derived tumor cell lines. 204|Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), also designated matrixins, hydrolyze components of the extracellular matrix. These proteinases play a central role in many biological processes, such as embryogenesis, normal tissue remodeling, wound healing, and angiogenesis, and in diseases such as atheroma, arthritis, cancer, and tissue ulceration. Currently 23 MMP genes have been identified in humans, and most are multidomain proteins. This review describes the members of the matrixin family and discusses substrate specificity, domain structure and function, the activation of proMMPs, the regulation of matrixin activity by tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases, and their pathophysiological implication. 205|Cleft lip with or without cleft palate is a common birth defect affecting 1 in every 700 live births. Several genetic loci are believed to be involved in the pathogenesis of syndromic and non-syndromic clefting. We identified a pericentric inversion of chromosome 4, inv(4)(p13q21) that segregates with cleft lip in a two-generation family. By using a combination of fluorescence in situ hybridization, yeast artificial chromosome, bacterial artificial chromosome contig mapping, and database searching we mapped and sequenced the inversion breakpoint region. The pericentric inversion disrupts a gene (ACOD4) on chromosome 4q21 that codes for a novel acyl-CoA desaturase enzyme. The 3.0 kb human ACOD4 cDNA spans approximately 170 kb and is composed of five exons of ACOD4. The inversion breakpoint is located in the second exon. The 3.0 kb mRNA is expressed at high level in fetal brain; a lower expression level was found in fetal kidney. No expression of ACOD4 was detected in fetal lung or liver or in adult tissues. The five exons code for a protein of 330 amino acids, with a predicted molecular weight of 37.5 kDa. The protein is highly similar to acyl-CoA desaturases from Drosophila melanogaster to Homo sapiens. The catalytically essential histidine clusters and the potential transmembrane domains are well conserved. 206|The crystal deposition arthropathies comprise a host of disorders that may occur idiopathically or as secondary manifestations of associated diseases. Rarely, crystal deposition presents as a familial disorder. Most affected family members display radiographically detectable crystals of calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate in their joint spaces. In genetic studies of familial calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate deposition disease, a region on the short arm of chromosome 5 was found to be genetically linked to the phenotype displayed by several of these families. Among the positional candidates at this locus was ANKH, the human homolog of a gene that is responsible for the phenotype of progressive ankylosis (ank) in the mouse. ANKH codes for a transmembrane protein that appears to regulate the transport of inorganic pyrophosphate. It was analyzed as a potential positional candidate gene for calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate deposition disease, and in several unrelated families, sequence variants were identified that segregated with the calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate deposition disease phenotype among affected members. A discussion of ANKH as the familial calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate deposition disease gene is presented. 207|Of 85 patients with ALS, the authors identified 3 patients with balanced translocations and 2 patients with pericentric inversions, all affecting distinct chromosomal loci. The high rate of constitutional aberrations (5.9%) suggests that ALS is, in part, associated with recombination-based rearrangements of genomic sequences. 208|Human CD99 (MIC2) is a 32 kDa cell surface protein and its encoding gene is localized to the pseudoautosomal regions of both Xp and Yp chromosomes. Although sequences of several genes such as human PBDX and MIC2R are known to be related to that of CD99, the murine counterpart of CD99 has not been reported. Here we have identified a novel CD99 mouse paralog, named as CD99L2 (CD99 antigen-like 2), and its human, rat and zebrafish genes. Unlike the rapidly evolved CD99 gene, these CD99L2 genes were highly conserved among those species. However, the genomic organization of human and mouse CD99L2 genes showed a difference in their exon numbers possibly due to exon duplication during evolution. In addition, comparative analysis of the cDNA sequences identified the presence of variants in the region around the exons 3 and 4 even within a species due to a differential splicing event, resulting in species-specific patterns in their transcripts. As determined by in situ hybridization analysis, the CD99L2 gene appeared to be expressed particularly high in neuronal cells despite its ubiquitous distribution. The highly expression on neuronal cells without any variations between species reflects a dominant role of this molecule during neural development. Amino acid sequence alignment revealed five putative functional regions highly conserved between CD99L2 and CD99, indicating a close relationship between the two genes. Moreover, human and mouse CD99L2 were located on their X chromosomes, respectively, whereas the zebrafish mic2l1 gene was in the LG7 chromosome. These observations support the inference that the evolutionary conserved gene, CD99L2, originated from a common ancestor gene of CD99, and its high conservation among species implies at least some essential function. 209|BACKGROUND: The genes encoding the cytokines IL-4, IL-5, IL-13, and GM-CSF are located in close proximity on human chromosome 5. We have previously described a motif in the promoters of these genes with a common palindromic sequence: CCAAG em leader CTTGG. These half sites are variably spaced and, within GMCSF, flank a second internal palindromic site. The GMCSF palindrome was shown to act as a strong enhancer of transcription when linked to a heterologous promoter. OBJECTIVE: We sought to determine whether the related palindromic elements from IL4, IL5, and IL13 also act as enhancers of gene transcription. METHODS: Reporter plasmids driven by palindromic elements were transfected into Jurkat T and HeLa cells to determine enhancer activity, and T-cell extracts were used in electrophoretic mobility shift and methylation interference assays to determine the DNA-binding characteristics of palindrome-binding proteins. RESULTS: Enhancer activity was observed in unactivated T cells and HeLa cells, whereas in T cells the IL4 palindrome mediated an activation-specific response. Mutational analysis of this element revealed that both halves of the CCAAG em leader CTTGG palindrome and part of the intervening sequence were essential for mediating interaction with protein complexes. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays suggested that the 4 palindromes bound similar factors because complexes formed between Jurkat nuclear extracts and each palindromic element showed identical mobility, and these elements were able to cross-compete for binding. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that constitutively expressed factors are involved in mediating the enhancer function of these elements in T cells and that these factors might either be present or have closely related homologues in other cell types. Also, an activation-dependent factor might be recruited to modulate the function of the IL4 element. 210|The 22q11.2 deletion (del22q11.2) syndrome is a genetic condition with wide interfamilial and intrafamilial variability in clinical expression. The aim of the present study was to review the prevalence of parental transmission in our series of patients with del22q11.2, and to analyse clinical findings of the affected parents. Parental transmission of del22q11.2 in our series was 17.2% (15/87), with a preferential maternal transmission (10/15). One or more major features of del22q11.2 were found in all deleted parents, but one of the mothers showed extremely mild clinical anomalies. The present data demonstrate that it should be current policy to test both parents of patients with del22q11.2, irrespective of the parental phenotype, in view of the fact that extremely mild clinical features can be detected in parents of deleted patients. This would provide accurate genetic counselling to del22q11.2 families, as relatively asymptomatic parents must be advised of the 50% risk of transmitting the deletion in a subsequent pregnancy. Various genetic and non-genetic factors, including modifier genes at separate loci, mosaicism, unstable mutations, allelic variations at the haploid locus, chance and environmental interaction, can be hypothesized to be involved in variable clinical expression, even in the same family. 211|Hepatitis C virus (HCV) may be associated with the mixed cryoglobulinemia syndrome and other B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders (LPDs). The t(14;18) translocation may play a pathogenetic role. Limited data are available regarding the effects of antiviral therapy on rearranged B-cell clones. We evaluated the effects of interferon and ribavirin on serum, B-lymphocyte HCV RNA, and t(14; 18) in 30 HCV+, t(14;18)+ patients without either mixed cryoglobulinemia syndrome or other LPDs. The t(14;18) translocation was analyzed by both bcl-2/JH polymerase chain reaction and bcl-2/JH junction sequencing in peripheral blood mononuclear cells in all patients. Fifteen untreated patients with comparable characteristics served as controls. Throughout the study, the presence or absence of both t(14;18) and HCV RNA sequences were, in most cases, associated in the same cell samples. At the end of treatment, t(14;18) was no longer detected in 15 patients (50%) with complete or partial virologic response, whereas it was persistently detected in nonresponders (P <.05), as well as in 14 of 15 control patients. In 4 responder patients, t(14;18) and HCV RNA sequences were no longer detected in blood cells after treatment, but were again detected after viral relapse; the same B-cell clones were involved in the pretreatment and posttreatment periods. In conclusion, this study suggests that antiviral therapy may induce regression of t(14;18)-bearing B-cell clones in HCV+ patients and that this phenomenon may be related, at least in part, to the antiviral effect of therapy. This in turn suggests that antiviral treatment may help prevent or treat HCV-related LPDs. 212|A 12-year-old Japanese boy with mental retardation and facial dysmorphism developed frequent convulsions, and hypocalcemia due to hypoparathyroidism was recognized. Chromosomal analysis involving the fluorescence in situ hybridization method revealed a microdeletion of 22q11.2. However, other laboratory examinations revealed no cardiac anomaly, thymic hypoplasia, or cleft palate. It is well known that typical cases of 22q11 deletion syndrome have a cardiac anomaly, thymic hypoplasia and a cleft palate. However, the phenotype of 22q11 deletion syndrome is diverse, and hypoparathyroidism and facial dysmorphism have been reported in nine cases, including this case, associated with 22q11 deletion. This combination of clinical manifestations could be given another term, such as hypoparathyroidism-facial syndrome. Some hypoparathyroidism patients due to 22q11.2 deletion may be misdiagnosed as having idiopathic hypoparathyroidism, and a child diagnosed as having hypoparathyroidism should be examined for chromosomal 22q.11.2. deletion. 213|Loss of heterozygosity of chromosome 16q occurs in 17-25% of Wilms' tumors. Two cadherin genes mapping to 16q22 were chosen as candidate gens: E-CAD, encoding epithelial cadherin, because it is involved in kidney development and it was recently reported to be a WT1 target; and KSP-CAD because it encodes a kidney-specific cadherin. By RT-PCR analysis in a series of 39 Wilms' tumors, we identified a very low expression of E-CAD and KSP-CAD in 72% and 95% of the tumors, respectively. To ascertain whether down-expression of these genes could be related to WT1 alterations in tumors, we looked for a relationship between WT1 and CAD expression. Our data suggest (i) the existence of alternative mechanisms for regulating E-CAD expression, and (ii) that E-CAD does not belong to the WT1 pathway that is altered in Wilms' tumorigenesis. 214|PURPOSE: Very few tumor molecular markers have been identified that are highly specific for breast cancer cells when applied to blood and bone marrow (BM). Stanniocalcin (STC)-1 is a recently discovered human gene that has been implicated in cellular calcium homeostasis and resistance to hypoxia and is located on chromosome 8p in a region associated with amplification in breast cancer. We investigated STC-1 mRNA as a potential molecular marker for detection of breast cancer metastasis in the blood and BM. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Using the reverse transcriptase-PCR and electrochemiluminescence detection assay to assess for STC-1 mRNA expression, we evaluated 7 breast cancer cell lines, 34 primary breast cancer tumors, and the BM of 71 patients and the blood of 58 patients with American Joint Committee on Cancer stage 0-IV breast cancer. RESULTS: In this cohort of primarily early-stage breast cancer patients, the detection of STC-1 mRNA in the BM and blood significantly correlated with multiple histopathological prognostic factors, including primary tumor size, number of positive lymph nodes, T stage, M stage, N stage, and overall American Joint Committee on Cancer stage. STC-1 mRNA was not detected in the blood or BM of volunteers without cancer. In situ hybridization studies with a STC-1 antisense RNA probe also confirmed STC-1 mRNA expression in breast cancer cell lines and primary breast tumors. CONCLUSIONS: STC-1 is proposed as a novel, specific, and clinically useful molecular marker for detecting occult breast cancer cells in the BM and blood. 215|The authors report the first Thai family with cerebral autosomal dominant arteriopathy with subcortical infarcts and leukoencephalopathy (CADASIL) in which the family members had a classical history of progressive vascular dementia. The proband was a 31-year old Thai male who presented with an acute stroke in the subcortical region. His past history revealed mental disturbance, including poor judgement and regressive behavior as well as mood changes for 1 year. He did not have a history of migraine or any other vascular risk factors except for a strong family history of ischemic stroke and progressive dementia. Magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated multiple small infarctions in the subcortical white matter of the bilateral frontal, parietal and occipital lobes with another small lesion in the pons. Genetic study demonstrated a Notch 3 mutation consisting of the substitution of a nucleotide at position 406 in exon 3 leading to the replacement of an Arginine by Cysteine at position 110 in the 2nd EGF motif, which is compatable with CADASIL. 216|Despite their terminally differentiated status, vulnerable neurons in Alzheimer's disease (AD) display evidence of cell cycle activation, suggesting that mitotic dysfunction may be important in disease pathogenesis. To further delineate the role of mitotic processes in disease pathogenesis, we investigated phosphorylated histone H3, a key component involved in chromosome compaction during cell division. Consistent with an activation of the mitotic machinery, we found an increase in phosphorylated histone H3 in hippocampal neurons in AD. However, rather than within the nucleus as in actively dividing cells, activated phosphorylated histone H3 in AD is restricted to the neuronal cytoplasm despite activation of the mitotic machinery. Therefore, the aberrant cytoplasmic localization of phosphorylated histone H3 indicates a mitotic catastrophe that leads to neuronal dysfunction and neurodegeneration in AD. 217|This paper presents a novel clustering technique known as adaptive double self-organizing map (ADSOM). ADSOM has a flexible topology and performs clustering and cluster visualization simultaneously, thereby requiring no a priori knowledge about the number of clusters. ADSOM is developed based on a recently introduced technique known as double self-organizing map (DSOM). DSOM combines features of the popular self-organizing map (SOM) with two-dimensional position vectors, which serve as a visualization tool to decide how many clusters are needed. Although DSOM addresses the problem of identifying unknown number of clusters, its free parameters are difficult to control to guarantee correct results and convergence. ADSOM updates its free parameters during training, and it allows convergence of its position vectors to a fairly consistent number of clusters provided that its initial number of nodes is greater than the expected number of clusters. The number of clusters can be identified by visually counting the clusters formed by the position vectors after training. A novel index is introduced based on hierarchical clustering of the final locations of position vectors. The index allows automated detection of the number of clusters, thereby reducing human error that could be incurred from counting clusters visually. The reliance of ADSOM in identifying the number of clusters is proven by applying it to publicly available gene expression data from multiple biological systems such as yeast, human, and mouse. ADSOM's performance in detecting number of clusters is compared with a model-based clustering method. 218|Specific cytogenetic changes observed in various tumors indicate that a chromosomal event may play a key role in malignant transformation. We present a patient with keratoacanthoma with a sole chromosome abnormality. The karyotype found in short-term culture was 46,XY,t(2;8)(p13;p23); a normal male chromosome complement was also found. The finding of t(2;8) as a sole anomaly suggests that this aberration is a primary change in keratoacanthoma and might be important in the pathobiology of this tumor. 219|Mouse-human somatic cell hybrids have been extensively used in the molecular genetic dissection of human disease-related chromosome rearrangements because of their ability to selectively and randomly eliminate human chromosomes. This technology allows the isolation of structural chromosome abnormalities, which then allows determination of the precise molecular address of chromosome breakpoints associated with deletions and translocations, down to the nucleotides involved. The main confounding problem with the analysis of somatic cell hybrids is determining the exact chromosome complement unequivocally and quickly. Spectral karyotyping can identify each of the individual human chromosomes in a normal metaphase spread, as well as structural chromosome rearrangements-although, because of potential cross-hybridization between the human probe and mouse DNA sequences during the hybridization reaction, it has not been determined whether the same analysis will selectively identify human chromosomes on a mouse background. We show (to our knowledge, for the first time) that, under modified conditions of chromosomal in situ suppression hybridization, the standard spectral karyotyping probe does not cross-react with mouse chromosomes and can be used to identify subtle structurally rearranged chromosomes in hybrid cells. This analysis allows for the rapid and unequivocal identification of the human chromosome complement in these hybrids, as well as structural chromosome rearrangements that occur between mouse and human chromosomes that might otherwise confound the analysis. 220|CONTEXT: The molecular genetic events involved in the pathogenesis of mature B-cell leukemias with more than 55% prolymphocytes are not well characterized. We have encountered 2 such cases in which conventional cytogenetic analysis identified Burkitt lymphoma-type chromosomal translocations involving 8q24. OBJECTIVE: To assess these 2 cases for involvement of the c-myc gene using fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis with probes specific for the c-myc and immunoglobulin heavy-chain (IgH) genes. RESULTS: In both cases, conventional cytogenetic analysis demonstrated complex karyotypes, including chromosomal translocations involving 8q24. In case 1, a case of de novo prolymphocytic leukemia, the t(8;14)(q24;q32) was detected. In case 2, a case of chronic lymphocytic leukemia in prolymphocytoid transformation, the t(8;22)(q24;q11) was identified. Fluorescence in situ hybridization studies showed c-myc/IgH fusion signals in case 1, proving the presence of the t(8;14). Split c-myc signals without fusion to IgH were observed in case 2, proving c-myc gene rearrangement and consistent with the t(8;22). CONCLUSION: These results suggest that c-myc gene alterations may be involved in the pathogenesis of a subset of mature B-cell leukemias with more than 55% prolymphocytes. 221|Based on the symmetry of transmitted/nontransmitted alleles from heterozygous parents under the null hypothesis of no association, the work proposed here establishes a general statistical framework for constructing association tests with data from nuclear families with multiple affected children. A class of association tests is proposed for both diallelic and multiallelic markers. The proposed test statistics reduce to the transmission disequilibrium test for trios, to T(su) by Martin et al. ([1997] Am. J. Hum. Genet. 61:439-448) for affected sib pairs, and to the pedigree disequilibrium test by Martin et al. ([2000] Am. J. Hum. Genet. 67:146-154); [2001] Am. J. Hum. Genet. 68:1065-1067) when using affected sibships only. The association test used in simulation and for real data (sitosterolemia) is the one which has the best overall power in detecting association. This association test is generally more powerful than the association tests proposed by Martin et al. ([2000] Am. J. Hum. Genet. 67:146-154); [2001] Am. J. Hum. Genet. 68:1065-1067) when using only affected sibships. For the sitosterolemia data set, the association test has its most significant result (P-value=0.0012) for the marker locus on the same bacterial artificial chromosome as the disease locus. 222|OBJECTIVE: To test if the three most common mutations contributing to Crohn's disease on the CARD15/NOD2 gene could contribute also to genetic susceptibility to systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), which has been found to be linked to the region of chromosome 16q13 where the CARD15 gene is located. METHODS: We obtained DNA samples from the blood of 189 SLE patients (according to the American College of Rheumatology classification criteria) and 194 controls of Spanish ancestry. Genotypes for the three CARD15 mutations (3020insC, 2722G>C and 2104C>T) were determined by hybridization with fluorescence resonance energy transfer probes on a LightCycler real-time polymerase chain reaction system. RESULTS: CARD15 genotypes were similar in SLE patients and in controls from the general population (allelic frequencies for 3020insC 0.013 in SLE patients vs 0.013 in controls; for 2722G > C 0.011 vs 0.008; and for 2104C > T 0.032 vs 0.051). CONCLUSION: We did not find evidence that the Crohn's disease-associated mutations on CARD15 contributed to SLE susceptibility. 223|Distinction of oligodendrogliomas from other gliomas is clinically important, but the histologic diagnosis of oligodendroglioma has been a difficult and notoriously subjective task. Testing for loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on chromosomal arms 1p and 19q, the genetic signature of oligodendroglioma, has emerged as a useful, objective adjunct to the traditional histologic evaluation. However, LOH testing of glioma specimens has not yet been widely implemented, presumably because of a lack of a practical LOH assay. We describe a 1p and 19q LOH assay suitable for routine diagnostics. In contrast to traditional microsatellite-based LOH analysis, we show that detection of LOH is usually possible even without normal tissue or blood from the same patient. A small area of tumor on a single paraffin section is sufficient for the assay. The assay protocol consists of a one-step DNA extraction, multiplex PCR for microsatellites on 1p and 19q, and capillary electrophoresis of the PCR products. LOH is detected by analysis of the allelic patterns and by integration of data from multiple highly polymorphic microsatellites. In a validation study on 19 gliomas, the results were concordant with results obtained by established methods and correlated well with histologic diagnoses. Because only a paraffin section is required, the pathologist can perform both the traditional histopathologic evaluation and this supporting molecular assay from the material at hand. 224|Melanoma's incidence and mortality for certain groups has appeared to level off after a steady increase over the last half century. This trend is suspected to be due to better detection and removal of thin, biological early melanomas. However, to date, no prospective evidence exists to clearly demonstrate the efficacy of prevention and early detection in decreasing melanoma mortlity. Nonetheless, many studies suggest that both self-assessment of risk factors or clinician examination can identify a proportion of patients at highest risk for melanoma who may benefit from behavior modification (primary prevention) and routine screening (secondary prevention). Compromising these goals is the fact that neither the clinical or histologic diagnosis of melanoma is 100% accurate. Clinical diagnosis of melanoma, based on evaluation of a skin lesion's color and shape, correlates best with the experience of the clinician. Ancillary technologies have been developed to improve clinical accuracy of suspicious skin lesions but a subset of melanomas exist that do not fall in the spectrum of the 'ABCDE' guidelines commonly used for melanoma identification. Similarly, at the histologic level (the 'gold standard' of diagnosis), overlap exists between benign and malignant melanocytic proliferations leading to both over and underdiagnosis of melanoma. A better understanding of melanoma's pathogenesis has identified disease-related biomarkers that may more reliably differentiate a melanocytic nevus from melanoma. In this paper, we review current and novel, potentially more accurate, biomarkers and supplementary technologies that can be used for the prevention, screening and diagnosis of melanoma. 225|The puffer fish Takifugu rubripes (Fugu), with its compact genome, is an ideal model organism for comparative genomics. Sonic hedgehog (Shh) is a key protein in the patterning of differentiating cells during embryonic development. We have sequenced the Fugu Shh gene and compared it with the mammalian and zebrafish orthologs, identifying a number of novel conserved, non-coding sequences upstream of exon one and within the two introns. Additional conserved sequences serve to delineate activator regions and enhancers previously characterized through functional analysis. Control elements can thus be rapidly and effectively predicted by comparative methodology in its own right as well as complementing other, functional methods. This work demonstrates the value of using Fugu in comparative genomics, which has allowed identification of new putative regulatory elements, as well as corroborating enhancers identified by the more traditional deletion mapping method. 226|This study identifies multiple copies of the AML1 gene on a duplicated chromosome 21, dup(21), as a recurrent abnormality in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Clusters of AML1 signals were visible at interphase by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). In metaphase, they appeared tandemly duplicated on marker chromosomes of five distinct morphological types: large or small acrocentrics, metacentrics, submetacentrics or rings. The markers comprised only chromosome 21 material. Karyotypes were near-diploid and, besides dup(21), no other established chromosomal changes were observed. A total of 20 patients, 1.5 and <0.5% among consecutive series of childhood and adult ALL respectively, showed this phenomenon. Their median age was 9 years, white cell counts were low and all had a pre-B/common immunophenotype. Although this series is not the first report of this abnormality, it is the largest, permitting a detailed description of the variety of morphological forms that duplicated chromosome 21 can assume. 227|We analyzed the genetic aberrations on chromosome arms 1p, 10q, and 14q, which are thought to be loci that include putative tumor suppressor genes in meningiomas. We initially conducted molecular genetic testing on a total of 72 tumors including 15 atypical and 8 anaplastic meningiomas using double-target fluorescence in situ hybridization. An incidence of deletion of 1p was observed in 16.3% of histologically benign, 86.7% of atypical, and 87.5% of anaplastic meningiomas. Microsatellite analysis for loss of heterozygosity on 1p, 10q, and 14q was performed in 15 tumors (6 benign, 6 atypical, and 3 anaplastic meningiomas). We detected alimited deleted region on 1p36 in two tumors and suggest a new consistent region of deletion at 1p36.21 approximately p23 distal to D1S507 and proximal to D1S214, which spans 8.21 megabases. In addition, loss of 10q was detected in two of three secondary atypical meningiomas, and loss of 14q in two of three primary anaplastic meningiomas. We suggest that one of the putative suppressor genes is located at 1p36.21 approximately p23, and that 10q loss may contribute to the malignant progression from benign to atypical meningiomas. 228|OBJECTIVE: The frequency of Y-chromosome material is high in Turner syndrome (TS), but the ocurrence of gonadoblastoma seems to be low. We performed a study to evaluate whether DNA analysis might be a useful tool in the evaluation of patients with TS. SUBJECTS: Unrelated patients with TS (n = 52) of Venezuelan mestizo ethnic origin were diagnosed by cytogenetic analysis as having TS. METHODS: Clinical assessment, karyotyping, endocrine evaluation, fluorescence in situ hybridization, and polymerase reaction chain analysis of the Y-chromosome loci. RESULTS: We found that 7.69% (4 of 52) patients with TS had Y-chromosome material. A low occurrence of gonadoblastoma was also found (2 of 52 [3.85%]). Two patients showed a 45,X/46,XY karyotype, and gonadoblastoma in the gonadal biopsy specimen was not found. Two patients had no Y chromosome on initial karyotype; they were positive on lymphocyte DNA to Y-sequences specific. Both patients (45,X) had bilateral gonadoblastoma. The four patients with Y-chromosome material in peripheral blood lymphocytes had Y-chromosome sequences on gonadal DNA. Fluorescence in situ hybridization confirmed their Y-chromosome origin. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that the detection of Y-chromosome material should be carried out in all patients with TS and not be limited to patients with TS with cytogenetically identifiable Y chromosome and/or virilization. 229|Nanomanipulation and nanoextraction on a scale close to and beyond the resolution limit of light microscopy is needed for many modern applications in biological research. For the manipulation of biological specimens a combined microscope allowing for ultraviolet (UV) microbeam laser manipulation together with manipulation by an atomic force microscope (AFM) was used. In a one-step procedure, human metaphase chromosomes were dissected optically by the UV-laser ablation and mechanically by AFM manipulation. With both methods, sub-400-nm cuts could be achieved routinely. Thus, the AFM is an indispensable tool for in situ quality control of nanomanipulation. However, already on this scale the dilation of the topographic AFM image due to the tip geometry can become significant. Therefore the AFM images were restored using a tip geometry obtained by a blind tip-reconstruction algorithm. Cross-sectional analysis of the restored image reveals a 380-nm-wide UV-laser cut and AFM cuts between 70 nm and 280 nm. 230|Here, we describe the identification of three human genes with altered expression in thyroid diseases. One of them corresponds to insulin-like growth factor binding protein 5 (IGFBP5), which has already been described as over expressed in other cancers and, for the first time, is identified as overexpressed in thyroid tumors. The other genes, named 44 and 199, are ESTs with yet unknown function and were mapped on human chromosomes seven and four, respectively. We determined by RT-PCR the expression level of these genes in ten samples of disease-free thyroid, ten of goiter, nine of papillary carcinoma, ten of adenoma and seven of follicular carcinoma and the significance of observed differences was statistically determined. IGFBP-5 and gene 44 were significantly overexpressed in papillary carcinoma when compared to normal and goiter. Genes 44 and 199 were differentially expressed in follicular carcinoma and adenoma when compared to normal thyroid tissue. 231|Linkage analysis has identified a susceptibility locus for type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) on chromosome 1q21-q23 in several populations. Results from recent prospective studies indicate that increased levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of immune system activation, are predictive of diabetes, independent of adiposity. Because CRP is located on 1q21, we considered it a potential positional candidate gene for T2DM. We therefore evaluated CRP and the nearby serum amyloid P-component, APCS, which is structurally similar to CRP, as candidate diabetes susceptibility genes. Approximately 10.9kb of the CRP-APCS locus was screened for polymorphisms using denaturing high performance liquid chromatography and direct sequencing. We identified 27 informative polymorphisms, including 26 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and 1 insertion/deletion, which were divided into 7 linkage disequilibrium clusters. We genotyped representative SNPs in approximately 1300 Pima samples and found a single variant in the CRP promoter (SNP 133552) that was associated with T2DM (P=0.014), as well as a common haplotype (CGCG) that was associated with both T2DM (P=0.029) and corrected insulin response, a surrogate measure of insulin secretion in non-diabetic subjects (P=0.050). Linkage analyses that adjusted for the effect of these polymorphisms indicated that they do not in themselves account for the observed linkage with T2DM on chromosome 1q. However, these findings suggest that variation within the CRP locus may play a role in diabetes susceptibility in Pima Indians. 232|Very-long-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (VLCAD) is a major enzyme catalysing the first step in mitochondrial beta-oxidation of long-chain fatty acids. During analysis of the VLCAD promoter, we discovered that another gene, discs-large-related 4 (DLG4), overlaps VLCAD and is transcribed in the opposite direction. DLG4 encodes postsynaptic density-95 (PSD95) protein, which plays critical roles in the formation and maintenance of synaptic junctions. The transcription start site of the VLCAD gene was determined by primer extension analysis and the overlapping structure of VLCAD and DLG4 was clarified. VLCAD and DLG4 are arranged in a head-to-head orientation on chromosome 17p13, and share a 245 bp overlapping region that contains part of DLG4 exon 1 and the entire exon 1 of VLCAD including 62 bp of protein coding sequence. Despite the overlap of their 5' ends, DLG4 and VLCAD exhibit peak mRNA expression in different tissues, suggesting that they are independently regulated at the transcriptional level. Interestingly, VLCAD and DLG4 genes do not overlap in the mouse or Drosophila genomes. 233|In this study, we report two cases each with a complex chromosome rearrangement concealing a submicroscopic terminal deletion. The first case had a mos 46,XX,der(1)t(1;9)(p36.3;p13). ish der(1)(wcp9 +, 1ptel-, 9ptel +, pan tel +)[88]/46,XX. ish del(1)(1ptel -, 9ptel -, pan tel +)[12] karyotype. Scrutiny by FISH using wcp 9, 1ptel, 9ptel, and pan telomeric probes found a subtelomeric 1ptel deletion on the der(1) in the abnormal cell line and on a chromosome 1 in the apparently normal cell line. The telomere (TTAGGG)n, however, was present on the terminal ends of both copies of chromosome 1 in the apparently normal and abnormal cell lines. The second case had a de novo mos 46,X,der(X)t(X;22)(p22.3;q11.2),inv dup(22)(q11.2).ish der(X)(wcpX +,wcp22 +,KAL +, STS -,Xptel -,BCR +),inv dup(22)(wcp22 +,TUPLE ++,BCR -)[85]/45,X,der(X)t(X;22)(p22.3;q11.2),- 22[15].ish der(X)(wcpX +,wcp22 +, KAL +,STS -,Xptel -,BCR +) karyotype. FISH probes identified a terminal Xpter deletion, distal to the KAL gene. The two rearrangements are hypothesized to have been initiated by a terminal deletion. We propose a model for the formation of the rearrangement in Case 1, which invokes independent telomere stabilization of the sister chromatids. A terminal deletion 1pter in meiosis, was followed by acquiring or regenerating a telomere (TTAGGG)n cap on one chromatid and the other chromatid was involved in a translocation with a chromosome 9 chromatid. Following segregation of this chromosome the viable cell line survives to form the mosaic karyotype. Our findings suggest that subtelomeric deletions should be ruled out in cases with complex and simple rearrangements involving the terminal regions. 234|The splicing of nascent mRNA precursors is an essential step for the expression of all intron-containing eukaryotic genes. Removal of intron sequences from nascent transcripts is mediated by the spliceosome, a large multicomponent complex. We describe here the identification of two genes encoding related, putative splicing factors on human chromosome 19p13.11, SF4 (splicing factor 4) and SFRS14 (splicing factor arginine/serine-rich 14). Both genes encode proteins containing a SURP motif; this domain is found in several splicing proteins including Drosophila alternative splicing regulator, suppressor-of-white-apricot (SWAP) and the yeast splicing factor, prp21p. In addition, SF4 and SFRS14 contain a G-patch domain at their C-termini, a motif present in a large number of eukaryotic RNA-binding proteins. SFRS14 also contains an N-terminal region that is rich in arginine/serine residues, suggesting SFRS14 is a novel member of the SR-related family of pre-mRNA processing factors. We have also identified the mouse orthologues of SF4 and SFRS14, based on conserved domain organization and high sequence similarity. Interestingly, SFRS14 undergoes alternative 3'-end processing events that are conserved between human and mouse, suggesting a functional significance. 235|A proportion of gastrinomas demonstrates aggressive growth, and most deaths occur in this group. Little is known about the molecular pathogenesis of growth of this tumor, and there are no predictive factors that are useful in an individual patient. Chromosome 1 (Chr 1) loss of heterozygosity (LOH) is frequent in a number of nonendocrine tumors and in a few endocrine tumors, and its presence can correlate with tumor aggressiveness and survival. In gastrointestinal endocrine tumors including gastrinomas, little data are available on Chr 1 LOH, and the limited results are contradictory. In the present study we determine whether Chr 1 LOH occurs in gastrinomas and is associated with aggressive growth by performing Chr 1 allelotyping with microsatellite markers in microdissected tumor tissue from 27 human gastrinomas and the leukocyte DNA of the patients. Detailed clinical pathological correlations were possible, because tumor growth in all of the patients was prospectively assessed with yearly imaging studies. Twelve gastrinomas (44%) had Chr 1 LOH, and in all of the cases 1q LOH occurred. 1q LOH was associated with aggressive growth (P = 0.0004), presence of liver metastases (P = 0.019), and postoperative development of hepatic metastases (P = 0.017). Eight (75%) of the 12 tumors with 1q LOH had 1q31-32 LOH over a 17.3 cM region, whereas LOH in 6 tumors (50%) occurred at 1q21-23 over a 12.3 cM area. The presence of 1q31-32 LOH and 1q21-23 LOH correlated with aggressive tumor growth (P = 0.0056 and P = 0.0031, respectively), and with postoperative development of liver metastases (P = 0.0114 and P = 0.011, respectively). These data suggest that 1q LOH is not infrequent in gastrinomas and could be a molecular/genetic prognostic factor for aggressive growth that could be useful clinically. The high frequent allelic loss at 1q31-32 as well as 1q21-23, which was associated with tumor aggressive growth, suggests these two regions harbor putative tumor suppressor gene(s) that are important for aggressive growth of this tumor. 236|The aim of this study was a clonal analysis of gliomatosis cerebri (GC), a rare disease characterized by diffuse, extensively infiltrating glial tumors of the central nervous system. Two females of the series were not informative in assays for X-chromosomal inactivation, and a polycytosine tract of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) was tested as a clonal marker. Following fluorescent PCR, a fraction of human individuals shows several electrophoretic bands in normal tissues, some of which can be lost in corresponding glial tumors. Two male patients of our series fulfilled this prerequisite and were thus informative. In patient 1, four tumor samples from the left temporal and occipital cortex, histologically corresponding to WHO grades III and IV, showed an identical loss of bands, which was not observed in tumor-free brain and in tumors from the left cerebellum, from fornix and corpus callosum, and from the right occipital cortex, corresponding to WHO grades III and IV. Since this patient exhibited a TP53 mutation in exon 7, we sequenced this exon in all tissue samples of this individual. The mutation was found selectively in the tumor samples with a loss of mtDNA bands. In patient 2, all tumors (histologically corresponding to WHO grade II) from putamen, thalamus, midbrain and right parietal cortex exhibited an identical loss of bands in the mtDNA analysis. Taken together, these results support that even distant tumors in a patient with GC can share a common clonal origin. They demonstrate the extraordinary mobility and infiltrative power of these tumor cells. 237|A designing method for chromosome automatic analyzing system is presented in the paper. The system accomplishes chromosome automatic recognizing, sorting, pairing, picking out aberrant chromosomes and then makes diseases-diagnosis. 238|OBJECTIVES: Presently, conventional cytogenetic analysis of metaphase chromosomes remains the reference approach in prenatal diagnosis. However, this method is labor-intensive and time-consuming. The first step toward the rapid identification of aneuploidies is achieved by interphase fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with centromeric or locus-specific probes. Spot counting using this type of probes is a reliable approach, but is very time-consuming with some technical and biological limitations. In this study, we present a new FISH method using image cytometry for the detection of trisomy 21 within interphase nuclei. METHODS: The method is based on a comparative quantitation of the fluorescence signals emitted by whole chromosome 21 and 22 painting probes cohybridized on interphase nuclei. The chromosomal imbalance was determined with an automated image cytometer by detecting an abnormal ratio of both fluorescence emissions when compared with the ratio obtained in normal cells. RESULTS: Ten blood samples and twenty amniotic fluids were analyzed. Results from FISH and standard cytogenetics were compared and 100% correlation was achieved. CONCLUSIONS: This method, which enables an easy detection of chromosomal imbalances without a need for metaphase preparations, can be applied to the diagnosis of trisomy 21 and extended to other disorders with chromosomal imbalances. Compared to other interphase FISH techniques, it avoids spot-scoring difficulties. 239|DNA methylation of the 5' region of genes is often associated with gene silencing in X-chromosome inactivation and imprinting. Recent studies have indicated that altered DNA methylation plays a role in the inactivation of multiple tumor suppressor genes and DNA repair genes such as p16INK4A and hMLH1. Colorectal adenomas have a relatively high frequency of methylation, and aberrant methylation is an early event during tumorigenesis. In aging patients, even colon epithelium which appears to be normal showed a significant amount of methylation in a subset of the genes. Colon mucosa from patients with inflammatory bowel disease also showed a high level of methylation. DNA methylation can be a specific diagnostic marker in gastrointestinal cancer and inflammatory bowel disease, for which there is no perfect marker for a noninvasive diagnosis. 240|Differential drug response is most often likely to be a complex trait, controlled by the combined influences of multiple genes and environmental influences. As a result of theoretical and technical limitations, to date, most clinically useful pharmacogenomic studies in humans have been limited to a small number of candidate genes that have a relatively major impact on drug response. Here, the problems involved in identifying genes that underlie drug response in humans are discussed and the power of mouse genetics as a tool for pharmacogenomic discovery is highlighted. 241|Genital human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are carcinogenic to humans and are associated with most cases of cervical cancer, genital and laryngeal warts, and certain cutaneous neoplastic lesions. Five of the more than 50 known genital HPV types, HPV-6, -11, -16, -18 and -31, have become the models to study gene expression. The comparison of the studies of these five viruses and analyses of the genomic sequences of those genital HPV types that have not been transcriptionally studied make it likely that genital HPVs share most strategies for regulating their transcription. These strategies are quite different from those of unrelated human and animal papillomaviruses. Among these common properties are (i) a specific promoter structure allowing for fine-tuned negative feedback, (ii) a transcriptional enhancer that is specific for epithelial cells, (iii) regulation by progesterone and glucocorticoid hormones, (iv) silencers, whose principal function appears to be transcriptional repression in the basal layer of infected epithelia, (v) specifically positioned nucleosomes that mediate the functions of some enhancer and the silencer factors, (vi) nuclear matrix attachment regions that can, under different conditions, repress or stimulate transcription, and (vii) as yet poorly understood late promoters positioned very remote from the late genes. Most of these properties are controlled by cellular proteins that, due to their simultaneous importance for cellular processes, may not be useful as HPV-specific drug targets. It should be possible, however, to target complex cis-responsive elements unique to these HPV genomes by nucleotide sequence-specific molecules, such as antisense RNA, polyamides and artificial transcription factors. The application of small molecule-based drugs may be restricted to target proteins encoded by the HPV DNA, such as the replication factor E1 and the transcription/replication factor E2. 242|BACKGROUND: Patients with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) show chromosomal aberrations in skin and blood lymphocytes. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the significance of peripheral blood clonal or non-clonal chromosomal abnormalities in comparison with the clinical course of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma patients. PATIENTS/METHODS: Five patients with large-plaque parapsoriasis (LPP) or with follicular mucinosis, eight with mycosis fungoides and two with Sézary syndrome were followed for an average of 54 months. G-banding and enzyme-detected in situ hybridization (EDISH) were used to identify aberrations in chromosomes 1, 6, 8, 9, 11, 13/21, 15 or 17, that had previously showed frequent aberrations. RESULTS: The aberration rates of all chromosomes studied differed between patients with active disease and healthy or photochemotherapy-treated controls by EDISH or G-banding (P < 0.01 to P < 0.05). Patients in complete remission differed from healthy controls for aberrations of chromosomes 1, 6 and 11, and from patients with active, progressing disease for chromosomes 1, 6, 8, 11 and 17 (P < 0.01 to P < 0.05, EDISH or G-banding). All 11 samples representing active, progressing disease showed elevated levels of chromosome 8 aberrations in EDISH. The change in chromosomal aberration rate and clinical condition between two consecutive samples agreed for chromosomes 1, 8, 9 and 15 (G-banding) and for chromosome 17 (G-banding and EDISH; kappa > 0.5-0.6). Six of seven patients (five CTCL, one LPP patient) with clonal chromosomal aberrations by G-banding showed continuously active disease and four of them, but none of the other patients, died within 30 months of the detection of the clone. CONCLUSIONS: The rate of chromosomal aberrations associates with the activity of CTCL, and has prognostic significance. Aberrations of chromosomes 1, 6 and 11, although increasing with activity of the disease, seem to be a hallmark of existing disease, detectable even in remission. Aberrations of chromosomes 8 and 17 especially associate with active or progressive disease. 243|Adeno-associated virus type 2 (AAV-2) establishes latency by site-specific integration into a unique locus, AAVS1, on human chromosome 19 (chr19). To study the kinetics and frequency of chr19-specific integration, a rapid, sensitive and quantitative real-time PCR assay specific for AAV inverted terminal repeat (ITR)-chr19 junction sequences was developed. Since the assay only detected right-hand AAV ITR-specific integration events, the development of a complementary left-hand ITR-specific real-time PCR assay is described. The time-course of left-hand ITR-dependent AAV integration at AAVS1 of chr19 was determined in AAV-2-infected HeLa cells. Both the kinetics and frequencies of left-hand ITR-dependent integration were found to be similar to those of the right-hand ITR. In addition, left-hand ITR-specific fusion sequences and chromosomal breakpoints within AAVS1 were variable, yet were the same as those found in right-hand ITR-chr19 junction sequences. Thus, the AAV-2 genome integrates site-specifically into chr19 with similar efficiency in either orientation. 244|Epigenetic modifications of the genome play a significant role in the elaboration of the genetic code as established at fertilisation. These modifications affect early growth and development through their influence on gene expression especially on imprinted genes. Genome-wide epigenetic reprogramming in germ cells is essential in order to reset the parent-of-origin specific marking of imprinted genes, but may have a more general role in the restoration of totipotency in the early embryo. In a similar way, on somatic nuclear cloning, a differentiated cell must become 'reprogrammed' restoring totipotency in order to undergo development. Here we discuss the dynamic epigenetic reprogramming that takes place during normal development and highlight those areas with relevance to somatic nuclear cloning and the possibility of improving the efficiency of this process. We propose the concept of 'epigenetic checkpoints' for normal progression of development and the loss of totipotency. 245|Fetal cells in maternal blood represent the future of prenatal screening and diagnosis. The possibility of analyzing fetal cells recovered from maternal blood could provide screening and diagnostic protocols characterized by high sensitivity and specificity with no direct risk to the developing fetus. Years of investigation have thus far not led to the development of reliable and consistent protocols; nonetheless, fetal cell recovery promises to be an attractive addition to noninvasive prenatal diagnosis. 246|In developed countries, interest in cutaneous aging is in large part the result of a progressive, dramatic rise over the past century in the absolute number and the proportion of the population who are elderly (Smith et al, 2001). The psychosocial as well as physiologic effects of skin aging on older individuals have created a demand for better understanding of the process and particularly for effective interventions. Skin aging is a complex process determined by the genetic endowment of the individual as well as by environmental factors. The appearance of old skin and the clinical consequences of skin aging have been well known for centuries, but only in the past 50 y have mechanisms and mediators been systematically pursued. Still, within this relatively short time there has been tremendous progress, a progress greatly enhanced by basic gerontologic research employing immunologic, biochemical, and particularly molecular biologic approaches (Figs 1, 2). 247|Kinetochores are the chromosomal sites for spindle interaction and play a vital role for chromosome segregation. The composition of kinetochore proteins and their cellular roles are, however, poorly understood in higher eukaryotes. We identified a novel kinetochore protein family conserved from yeast to human that is essential for equal chromosome segregation. The human homologue hMis12 of yeast spMis12/scMtw1 retains conserved sequence features and locates at the kinetochore region indistinguishable from CENP-A, a centromeric histone variant. RNA interference (RNAi) analysis of HeLa cells shows that the reduced hMis12 results in misaligned metaphase chromosomes, lagging anaphase chromosomes, and interphase micronuclei without mitotic delay, while CENP-A is located at kinetochores. Further, the metaphase spindle length is abnormally extended. Spindle checkpoint protein hMad2 temporally localizes at kinetochores at early mitotic stages after RNAi. The RNAi deficiency of CENP-A leads to a similar mitotic phenotype, but the kinetochore signals of other kinetochore proteins, hMis6 and CENP-C, are greatly diminished. RNAi for hMis6, like that of a kinetochore kinesin CENP-E, induces mitotic arrest. Kinetochore localization of hMis12 is unaffected by CENP-A RNAi, demonstrating an independent pathway of CENP-A in human kinetochores. 248|OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether chorionic villus sampling (CVS) is associated with an increase in fetomaternal cell trafficking. DESIGN: Prospective study. SETTING: King's College London School of Medicine, King's College Hospital. SAMPLE: Eighteen singleton pregnancies undergoing CVS for fetal karyotyping at 11-14 weeks of gestation and subsequently found to have chromosomal defects. METHOD: Maternal blood samples were obtained immediately before and at 3-14 (median 5) days after CVS. Fetal erythroblasts were isolated using triple density gradient separation and anti-CD71 magnetic cell sorting techniques. The enriched erythroblasts were stained with Kleihauer-Giemsa and with fluorescent antibodies for the epsilon (epsilon) and gamma (gamma) globin chains. The percentage of fetal cells positive for each stain was calculated. Fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) for X- and Y-chromosomes was also performed. Comparison was made in the proportion of enriched fetal cells between the pre-CVS and post-CVS samples. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The proportion of fetal erythroblasts in maternal blood. RESULTS: The percentage of erythroblasts enriched from maternal blood that stained positive for epsilon and gamma globin chains and with Kleihauer-Giemsa was significantly higher in the post-CVS samples compared with the pre-CVS samples. FISH analysis for the Y-chromosome confirmed the increase in fetal cell proportion in the post-CVS samples. The percentage difference in fetal cells decreased significantly with time interval from CVS. CONCLUSION: CVS results in an increase in fetomaternal cell trafficking, which continues to be present for several days after the procedure. 249|A baby born to an epileptic mother had dysmorphological features associated with 47,XXX karyotype. The mother had been treated with valproic acid (1800mg per day) and lamotrigine (100mg per day) throughout pregnancy. Dysmorphological features detected in baby were intrauterine growth retardation, hypertelorism, flattened nasal bridge, low set malformed auriculas, micrognathia, very small an bow-shaped mouth with thin upper lip, cleft palate, arachnodactyly, camptodactyly, secundum atrial septal defect, bilateral hammer toes and decreased creases on the soles. At 6 months old she showed motor retardation. The molecular analysis of parents revealed that extra X chromosome was inherited from the mother. In this case whether the dysmorphological features and 47,XXX karyotype were caused by lamotrigine and valproic acid treatment during pregnancy or coincidence is in question. 250|Genotyping costs still preclude analysis of a comprehensive SNP map in thousands of individual subjects in the search for disease susceptibility loci. Allele frequency estimation in DNA pools from cases and controls offers a partial solution, but variance in these estimates will result in some loss of statistical power. However, there has been no systematic attempt to quantify the several sources of error in previous studies. We report an analysis of the magnitude of variance components of each experimental stage in DNA pooling studies, and find that a design based on the formation of numerous small pools of approximately 50 individuals is superior to the formation of fewer, larger pools and the replication of any of the experimental stages. We conclude that this approach may retain an effective sample size greater than 68% of the true sample size, whilst offering a 60-fold reduction in DNA usage and a greater than 30-fold saving in cost, compared to individual genotyping. The possibility of combining pooling with informed selection of haplotype tag SNPs is also considered. In this way further savings in efficiency may be possible by using pooled allele frequency estimates to infer haplotype frequencies and hence, allele frequencies at untyped markers. 251|BACKGROUND: The 22q11.2 chromosome deletion syndrome occurs at a frequency of 1 in 4000 live births. Fluorescent in situ hybridization is a reliable means of testing for this genetic abnormality. OBJECTIVE: To describe the otolaryngologic manifestations of the 22q11.2 deletion syndrome to improve recognition and management of these disorders. PATIENTS AND DESIGN: A retrospective medical record review of 102 patients with chromosome 22q 11.2 deletions confirmed by fluorescent in situ hybridization. SETTING: A multidisciplinary 22q11.2 deletion clinic at an academic children's hospital. OUTCOME MEASURE: All otolaryngologic problems were recorded, including facial dysmorphic features, velopharyngeal insufficiency, speech and airway abnormalities, feeding difficulties, gastroesophageal reflux, hearing loss, otitis media, sinus problems, and vascular anomalies. Additionally, available objective test results were recorded, including those from audiograms, imaging studies, endoscopies, speech evaluations, and vascular studies. RESULTS: Dysmorphic facial features were found in most patients. Velopharyngeal incompetence was noted in 76 patients, while overt submucosal clefts were found in 11 patients. Most patients had speech and language delays. In addition, 53 patients had chronic or recurrent otitis media, and 28 had recurrent sinorhinitis. Furthermore, feeding problems were found in 48 patients, while vascular anomalies of the head and neck were found in 16 patients. CONCLUSION: Otolaryngologic abnormalities are relatively common and important to recognize with the 22q11.2 deletion syndrome. 252|Historically, obstetrician/gynaecologists have utilized screening procedures as a major component of their routine clinical practice. The Papanicolaou (Pap) smear technique for cervical cancer is more than 50 years old and has saved countless lives by identifying who among the supposedly low-risk group of patients is in fact at high risk of cervical cancer. The introduction of alpha-fetoprotein screening for neural tube defects in the 1970s, low alpha-fetoprotein level for Down syndrome in the 80s, multiple markers in the 90s and now, after the millennium combined ultrasound and biochemistry for a more precise risk identification, has radically changed our approach towards optimizing the sensitivity, specificity and positive and negative predictive values of screening. As these techniques improve, old mainstays of attributable risks such as advanced maternal age will probably fade into oblivion as stand-alone criteria. The specifics of screening techniques will vary by disorder, but the general principles are important and can be applied to all new technologies as they come on line. In fact, the real 'take-home message' is that one must use these principles when looking at new technologies to understand their role in emerging practice. 253|We report on nine children with Shwachman-Diamond syndrome (SDS), eight of whom had clonal abnormalities of chromosome 7. Seven children had an isochromosome 7 [i(7)(q10)] and one a derivative chromosome 7, all with an apparently identical (centromeric) breakpoint. Children with SDS are predisposed to myelodysplasia (MDS) and acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) often with chromosome 7 abnormalities. Allogeneic transplants have been used to treat these children, however, they are a high-risk transplant group and require careful evaluation. Three of the children were transplanted but only one survived, who to our knowledge remains the longest surviving SDS transplant patient (4.5 years +). The six non-transplanted children are well. In classic MDS, chromosome 7 abnormalities are associated with rapid progression to acute leukaemia; however, we present evidence to suggest that isochromosome 7q may represent a separate disease entity in SDS children. This is a particularly interesting finding given that the SDS gene has recently been mapped to the centromeric region of chromosome 7. Our studies indicate that i(7)(q10) is a relatively benign rearrangement and that it is not advisable to offer allogeneic transplants to SDS children with i(7)(q10) alone in the absence of other clinical signs of disease progression. 254|Mucinous cancers of the breast are distinguished histologically by their abundant pools of mucin and low degree of nuclear pleomorphism. Relative to the more common breast cancers of no distinctive type (ductal carcinoma), mucinous cancers have a relatively favorable prognosis. In a study of chromosomal changes in mucinous cancers, we evaluated the extent of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at chromosomal regions commonly deleted in usual infiltrating ductal carcinoma, including markers on chromosomal arms 1p, 1q, 3p, 6q, 8p, 9p, 11p, 11q, 13q, 16q, 17p, and 17q. Remarkably, we found an average frequency of LOH of only 1.9 of these 12 chromosomal arms in 18 cases of mucinous carcinoma, compared to an average frequency of LOH of 6.4 of these same chromosomal arms in cases of infiltrating ductal cancer. In three of the 18 cases of mucinous carcinoma studied, including one case with regional lymph node metastases, no LOH was seen at any of the 12 chromosomal regions studied. We considered the possibility of other chromosomal loci being more commonly affected in mucinous cancers and conducted comparative genomic hybridization on six of the cases. These studies demonstrated a low overall frequency of genomic copy number changes (mean of 3.1 changes per case) and failed to reveal any other chromosomal locus with frequent losses that had not been evaluated by microsatellite analysis. Together, these data indicate that mucinous cancers of the breast do not have the extensive genomic alterations that are typically found in more common variants of breast cancer. Thus, mucinous cancers most likely have less genetic instability than most other forms of breast cancer and the molecular pathogenesis of this form of breast cancer is likely to be substantially different than that of usual ductal breast cancer. 255|MAD2 is a key component of the spindle checkpoint that delays the onset of anaphase until all the kinetochores are attached to the spindle. It binds to human p55CDC and prevents it from promoting destruction of an anaphase inhibitor, securin. Here we report the characterization of a novel MAD2-binding protein, CMT2. Upon the completion of spindle attachment, formation of the CMT2-MAD2 complex coincides with dissociation of the p55CDC-MAD2 complex. Overexpression of CMT2 in cells arrested by the spindle checkpoint causes premature destruction of securin and allows exit from mitosis without chromosome segregation. Depletion of CMT2 induces cell death following a transient delay in the onset of anaphase. These results indicate that CMT2 interacts with the spindle checkpoint and coordinates cell cycle events in late mitosis. 256|Type 2 diabetes is a heterogeneous disorder of glucose metabolism characterized by insulin resistance, beta-cell dysfunction, and increased glucose production by the liver. Given the high degree of genetic heterogeneity, multiple genes with small to moderate effects may influence susceptibility to diabetes. To circumvent this limitation, we searched for quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that explain the variation in susceptibility of type 2 diabetes in a single extended family, as these individuals are likely to share polymorphisms. We collected genotypic and phenotypic data on 152 individuals ascertained through a multimedia campaign in France to find diabetes-prone families for genetic studies. The effects of genes and covariates (age and sex) on diabetes status were estimated using a threshold model and a maximum likelihood variance component approach. We obtained suggestive evidence of linkage (logarithm of odds [LOD] = 2.4) for diabetes status on chromosome 5q. Within the 1-LOD unit support interval, there are two strong candidates: PCSK1 and CAST. Furthermore, we have obtained a replication (LOD = 1.6) for a QTL for type 2 diabetes on chromosome 11 detected by Hanson and colleagues (1998). 257|The number of AgNORs per nucleus correlates with cellular proliferation and independently with malignant change. AgNOR number was studied in 200 cases of squamous cell carcinoma of head and neck, the count increased with increasing grade and the size became smaller and irregular with increasing grade of carcinoma. This study seems to suggest that this method has utility in grading of squamous cell carcinoma of head and neck. 258|To explore mechanisms for specificity of function within the family of E2F transcription factors, we have identified proteins that interact with individual E2F proteins. A two-hybrid screen identified RYBP (Ring1- and YY1-binding protein) as a protein that interacts specifically with the E2F2 and E2F3 family members, dependent on the marked box domain in these proteins. The Cdc6 promoter contains adjacent E2F- and YY1-binding sites, and both are required for promoter activity. In addition, YY1 and RYBP, in combination with either E2F2 or E2F3, can stimulate Cdc6 promoter activity synergistically, dependent on the marked box domain of E2F3. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, we show that both E2F2 and E2F3, as well as YY1 and RYBP, associate with the Cdc6 promoter at G(1)/S of the cell cycle. In contrast, we detect no interaction of E2F1 with the Cdc6 promoter. We suggest that the ability of RYBP to mediate an interaction between E2F2 or E2F3 and YY1 is an important component of Cdc6 activation and provides a basis for specificity of E2F function. 259|We compared instrumental analysis of enriched cord blood nucleated red blood cells (CB-NRBC) out of in vitro contamination preparations of dilutions of minute volumes of male cord blood into peripheral blood from nonpregnant women. This was done using the laser scanning cytometer (LSC) and the Metafer/RCDetect microscope scanning system, both allowing for relocation of positive cells defined on the basis of fluorescence parameters. Both instruments were efficient in performing scanning and relocation; a difference in the recovery of CB-NRBC was not significant and can be explained by the method of preparation used. 260|Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC) is classified into six cell pathological types by the Thoenes classification (5). Deletion of DNA (loss of heterozeigosity: LOH) is seen with a high frequency in human RCC of all 6 types at chromosome 3p 14-25. The presence of at least three tumor suppressor genes at this domain has been pointed out. The VHL gene, one of the tumor suppressor genes (TSG), was identified in 1993 at chromosome 3p25-26 as the gene responsible for VHL disease. As a consequence, it was demonstrated that inactivation of the von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) gene is responsible for sporadic clear cell RCC. Activating mutations of c-Met receptor type tyrosine kinase has been demonstrated in papillary renal cell carcinoma families. Possible involvement of the FHIT tumor suppressor gene, located at the fragile site (FRA3B) of chromosome 3p14, has been detected in sporadic RCC. Recently, methylation of RASSF1A at chromosome 3p21.3 was pointed out in sporadic RCC. Thus, it has become apparent that chromosome 3p14-25 3 has possible TSGs for RCC. Furthermore, it was pointed out in April that germline mutation of fumarate hydratase, a Krebs cycle enzyme (FH), is present in multiple cutaneous and uterine leiomyomatosis families that develop papillary RCC. The functional significance in these genes for the development of RCC is still not apparent, except for the VHL gene. Thus, there is still a long way to go before we find all responsible TSGs in all pathological subtypes in sporadic RCC. 261|A recent study has identified the variation in the ADAM33 gene as an important risk factor for asthma. This is not only good news for asthma sufferers, suggesting new directions for diagnostics and treatment, but also provides encouragement that unravelling the genetics of common diseases may not be quite as hard as had been feared. 262|Adjuvant chemotherapy reduces the incidence of distant metastasis and increases survival of patients with colorectal cancer. However, predictive markers are needed to define subsets of patients with stage II and III disease that may benefit from adjuvant treatment. A secreted member of the TNF receptor superfamily, the decoy receptor 3 (DcR3), was reported to be amplified in colorectal cancer as a negative regulator of Fas-mediated apoptosis. We analyzed DcR3 gene copy number and protein expression in a large series of tumors from a randomized multicenter trial of 5-fluorouracil/mitomycin C (FU/MMC) adjuvant chemotherapy of the Swiss Group for Clinical Cancer Research (SAKK 40/81), using real-time quantitative PCR and immunohistochemistry on tumor microarrays. Results of gene status and protein expression of DcR3 were correlated with disease-free and overall survival of patients. We observed amplification of the DcR3 gene in 185/294 (63%) and overexpression of the DcR3 protein in 163/223 (73%) of colorectal tumors. Multivariate analysis showed no prognostic effect of DcR3 gene amplification and protein overexpression. However, adjuvant chemotherapy was significantly more beneficial in patients with normal DcR3 gene copy number than in patients with amplification (DFS: HR 2.84, 95% CI 1.16-6.98, p = 0.02; OS: HR 3.15, 95% CI 1.19-8.32, p = 0.02), whereas DcR3 protein overexpression did not influence the effect of adjuvant chemotherapy (DFS: HR 1.02, 95% CI 0.65-1.60, p = 0.95; OS: HR 0.95, 95% CI 0.61-1.49, p = 0.83). We conclude that amplification of the 20q13 locus is a predictive marker for adjuvant chemotherapy in colorectal cancer. 263|PURPOSE: We studied the incidence of chromosomal anomalies in patients with cryptorchidism and hypospadias to determine the value of routine karyotyping in this population. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Blood samples from 984 patients with cryptorchidism and/or hypospadias were studied for chromosome analysis. RESULTS: Chromosomal anomalies were detected in 27 of the 916 patients (2.94%) with cryptorchidism and in 7 of the 100 (7%) with hypospadias. There were chromosomal aberrations in 13 of the 706 patients (1.84%) with isolated cryptorchidism (no additional congenital abnormalities) and in 14 of the 210 (6.67%) with cryptorchidism with associated anomalies. We identified normal karyotypes in 26 patients with isolated hypospadias, although 7 of the 74 (9.46%) with hypospadias and additional abnormalities had chromosomal aberrations. CONCLUSIONS: It is important to perform karyotyping in these patients, mainly when they show associated abnormalities other than cryptorchidism or hypospadias. However, cost-benefit analysis must be done in each case. 264|Okihiro syndrome refers to the association of forearm malformations with Duane syndrome of eye retraction. Based on the reported literature experience, clinical diagnosis of the syndrome can be elusive, owing to the variable presentation in families reported. Specifically, there is overlap of clinical features with other conditions, most notably Holt-Oram syndrome, a condition resulting from mutation of the TBX5 locus and Townes-Brocks syndrome, known to be caused by mutations in the SALL1 gene. Arising from our observation of several malformations in Okihiro syndrome patients which are also described in Townes-Brocks syndrome, we postulated that Okihiro syndrome might result from mutation of another member of the human SALL gene family. We have characterized the human SALL4 gene on chromosome 20q13.13-q13.2. Moreover, we have identified literature reports of forelimb malformations in patients with cytogenetically identifiable abnormalities of this region. We here present evidence in 5 of 8 affected families that mutation at this locus results in the Okihiro syndrome phenotype. 265|Adenylosuccinate lyase is an enzyme used in parasite nucleotide salvage pathways that cleaves adenylosuccinate into adenosine 5'-monophosphate and fumarate. A cDNA encoding adenylosuccinate lyase from the trematode parasite Schistosoma mansoni has been cloned for analysis. Sequencing of the cDNA revealed an open reading frame of 1454 nucleotides that codes for a protein with a predicted mass of about 54.5 kDa. Comparative analysis of the predicted protein sequence shows that S. mansoni adenylosuccinate lyase has a lot of similarity with human adenylosuccinate lyase. Genomic analysis using S. mansoni adenylosuccinate lyase-containing bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones revealed a gene of approximately 19.4 kb consisting of eight exons and seven introns. Intron 6 was found to contain a novel 2.9 kb long terminal repeat retrotransposon with direct terminal repeats of 500 nucleotides. Fluorescence in situ hybridisation mapping localised S. mansoni adenylosuccinate lyase to the Z and W chromosomes. Analysis of S. mansoni adenylosuccinate lyase mRNA expression levels using real time reverse transcriptase (RT)-PCR showed that S. mansoni adenylosuccinate lyase is expressed at higher levels in the female worms than in the male worms and is expressed at different levels than other purine nucleotide salvage enzymes. Male homogenate showed a specific activity of 10.3 units/mg protein while the female showed a specific activity of 24.2 units/mg protein. These data indicate that S. mansoni adenylosuccinate lyase is an important parasite enzyme and should be examined as a potential chemotherapeutic target. 266|The putative tumour suppressor gene EP300 is located on chromosome 22q13 which is a region showing frequent loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in colon, breast and ovarian cancers. We analysed 203 human breast, colon and ovarian primary tumours and cell lines for somatic mutations in EP300. LOH across the EP300 locus was detected in 38% of colon, 36% of breast, and 49% of ovarian primary tumours but no somatic mutations in EP300 were identified in any primary tumour. Analysis of 17 colon, 11 breast, and 11 ovarian cancer cell lines identified truncating mutations in 4 colon cancer cell lines (HCT116, HT29, LIM2405 and LIM2412). We confirmed the presence of a previously reported frameshift mutation in HCT116 at codon 1699 and identified a second frameshift mutation at codon 1468. Bi-allelic inactivation of EP300 was also detected in LIM2405 that harbours an insC mutation at codon 927 as well an insA mutation at codon 1468. An insA mutation at codon 1468 was identified in HT29 and a CGA>TGA mutation at codon 86 was identified in LIM2412. Both these lines were heterozygous across the EP300 locus and western blot analysis confirmed the presence of an apparently wild-type protein. Our study has established that genetic inactivation of EP300 is rare in primary colorectal, breast and ovarian cancers. In contrast, mutations are common among colorectal cancer cell lines with 4/17 harbouring homozygous or heterozygous mutations. The rarity of EP300 mutations among these tumour types that show a high frequency of LOH across 22q13 may indicate that another gene is the target of the loss. It is possible that bi-allelic inactivation of EP300 is not necessary and that haploinsufficiency is sufficient to promote tumorigenesis. Alternatively, silencing of EP300 may be achieved by epigenetic mechanisms such as promoter methylation. 267|Identification of specifically expressed genes in the adult or fetal testis is very important for the study of genes related to the development and function of the testis. In this study, a human adult testis cDNA microarray was constructed and hybridized with 33P-labeled human adult and embryo testis cDNA probes, respectively. After differential display analyzing, a number of new genes related to the development of testis and spermatogenesis had been identified. One of these new genes is tsMCAK. tsMCAK was expressed 2.62 folds more in human adult testis than fetal testis. The full length of tsMCAK is 2401 bp and contains a 2013 bp open reading frame, encoding a 671-amino-acid protein. Sequence analysis showed that it has a central kinesin motor domain and is homologous to HsMCAK gene of the somatic cells. Blasting human genome database localized tsMCAK to human chromosome 1P34 and further investigation showed that it is a splice variant of HsMCAK. The tissue distribution of tsMCAK was determined by RT-PCR and it is expressed highly and specifically in the testis. Southern blot studies of its expression in patients with infertility indicated its specific expression in spermatogenic cells and its correlation with male infertility. The above results suggested that tsMCAK is a candidate gene for the testis-specific KRPs and its specific expression in the testis was correlated with spermatogenesis and may be correlated with male infertility. 268|A number of common contiguous gene syndromes have been shown to result from nonallelic homologous recombination (NAHR) within region-specific low-copy repeats (LCRs). The reciprocal duplications are predicted to occur at the same frequency; however, probably because of ascertainment bias and milder phenotypes, reciprocal events have been identified in only a few cases to date. We previously described seven patients with dup(17)(p11.2p11.2), the reciprocal of the Smith-Magenis syndrome (SMS) deletion, del(17)(p11.2p11.2). In >90% of patients with SMS, identical approximately 3.7-Mb deletions in 17p11.2 have been identified. These deletions are flanked by large (approximately 200 kb), highly homologous, directly oriented LCRs (i.e., proximal and distal SMS repeats [SMS-REPs]). The third (middle) SMS-REP is inverted with respect to them and maps inside the commonly deleted genomic region. To investigate the parental origin and to determine whether the common deletion and duplication arise by unequal crossovers mediated through NAHR between the proximal and distal SMS-REPs, we analyzed the haplotypes of 14 families with SMS and six families with dup(17)(p11.2p11.2), using microsatellite markers directly flanking the SMS common deletion breakpoints. Our data indicate that reciprocal deletion and duplication of 17p11.2 result from unequal meiotic crossovers. These rearrangements occur via both interchromosomal and intrachromosomal exchange events between the proximal and distal SMS-REPs, and there appears to be no parental-origin bias associated with common SMS deletions and the reciprocal duplications. 269|Alterations of chromosomal region 8p11-21 are very frequent in human cancers, and especially in breast cancer; yet, most of the genes involved have not been identified. We performed laser capture microdissection in a series of 52 consecutive breast tumor samples to obtain pure tumor cells without surrounding normal breast. To determine genomic subregions in which some of the cancer genes may be located, we conducted a search for loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at 13 microsatellite markers from this region. Two-thirds of the tumors showed LOH at least at one marker. Microdissection of pure tumor samples was helpful to precisely define four LOH subregions. No LOH was observed in the corresponding peritumoral tissues. We studied by immunohistochemistry (IHC) on tissue-microarrays the expression in the same tumors, of the protein product of three potential tumor genes lying close to or within the subregions of LOH. In most samples, the TACC1 gene product was downregulated in tumor cells as compared to normal cells. Our results show that the centromeric portion of chromosome arm 8p is frequently altered in breast tumor cells. 270|The Wisconsin hypoalpha mutant (WHAM) chicken has a >90% reduction in plasma HDL due to hypercatabolism by the kidney of lipid-poor apoA-I. The WHAM chickens have a recessive white skin phenotype caused by a single-gene mutation that maps to the chicken Z-chromosome. This corresponds to human 9q31.1, a chromosomal segment that contains the ATP-binding cassette protein-1 (ABCA1) gene, which is mutated in Tangier Disease and familial hypoalphalipoproteinemia. Complete sequencing of the WHAM ABCA1 cDNA identified a missense mutation near the N-terminus of the protein (E89K). The substitution of this evolutionary conserved glutamate residue for lysine in the mouse ABCA1 transporter leads to complete loss of function, resulting principally from defective intracellular trafficking and very little ABCA1 reaching the plasma membrane. The WHAM chicken is a naturally occurring animal model for Tangier Disease. 271|A 32-year-old woman with relapsed Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukaemia was treated with imatinib mesylate (formerly STI571), a selective inhibitor of BCR/ABL tyrosine kinase. Although the initial marrow response was good and stably maintained, she subsequently relapsed with extensive infiltration of leukaemic cells into the central nervous system (CNS). After controlling her CNS disease with additional intrathecal chemotherapy, we measured the concentration of imatinib in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and blood simultaneously. The concentration of imatinib in CSF was about 92-fold lower than that in blood. These results suggest that imatinib poorly penetrates the blood-brain barrier and has limited activity against CNS leukaemia. 272|PURPOSE: To describe an infant affected by Klinefelter syndrome, who also demonstrated clinical signs of Moebius syndrome. METHODS: A clinical case report. RESULTS: A male infant was born full-term to a healthy couple after an unremarkable pregnancy. Several dysmorphic features and generalized hypotonia were noted at birth. Chromosome study revealed a 47, XXY chromosome pattern, which is consistent with Klinefelter syndrome. The patient also demonstrated clinical findings of Moebius syndrome: bilateral horizontal gaze palsy, bilateral cranial nerve seven palsy, pointed tongue, pectoral muscle hypoplasia, and clubfeet. CONCLUSION: We report the first clinical case of a patient with Klinefelter syndrome who was also affected by Moebius syndrome. Although clinically intriguing, coexistence of the two syndromes most likely represents a chance occurrence. 273|BACKGROUND: Dysplasia is an important feature of leukoplakia. Because agreement among oral pathologists is poor regarding lesional diagnosis, silver stainable nucleolar organizer regions (AgNORs) as replicatory markers may have a place in objectively characterizing dysplasia in tissue specimens. METHODS: We studied 41 normal oral epithelia, 51 oral leukoplakia (26 dysplastic, 25 non-dysplastic), and 51 cases of squamous cell carcinoma specimens for their mean AgNOR counts. RESULTS: Mean AgNOR counts increased gradually from normal epithelium to non-dysplastic to dysplastic leukoplakia to squamous cell carcinoma. Using ROC analysis, we determined a mean AgNOR count cut-point (2.37) that can be used to distinguish between dysplastic and non-dysplastic leukoplakia. The test had a sensitivity of 75% and specificity of 83% with area under the curve being 88%. CONCLUSIONS: Mean AgNOR count could be a valuable criterion for defining objective parameters for diagnosis/determination of dysplasia distinguishing between dysplastic and non-dysplastic leukoplakia. 274|We have determined the nucleotide sequence of a zebrafish cDNA clone that codes for a cellular retinol-binding protein type II (CRBPII). Radiation hybrid mapping revealed that the zebrafish and human CRBPII genes are located in syntenic groups. In situ hybridization and emulsion autoradiography localized the CRBPII mRNA to the intestine and the liver of adult zebrafish. CRBPII and intestinal fatty acid binding protein (I-FABP) mRNA was colocalized to the same regions along the anterior-posterior gradient of the zebrafish intestine. Similarly, CRBPII and I-FABP mRNA are colocalized in mammalian and chicken intestine. CRBPII mRNA, but not I-FABP mRNA, was detected in adult zebrafish liver which is in contrast to mammals where liver CRBPII mRNA levels are high during development but rapidly decrease to very low or undetectable levels following birth. CRBPII and I-FABP gene expression appears therefore to be co-ordinately regulated in the zebrafish intestine as has been suggested for mammals and chicken, but CRBPII gene expression is markedly different in the liver of adult zebrafish compared to the livers of mammals. As such, retinol metabolism in zebrafish may differ from that of mammals and require continued production of CRBPII in adult liver. The primary sequence of the coding regions of fish and mammalian CRBPII genes, their relative chromosomal location in syntenic groups and possibly portions of the control regions involved in regulation of CRBPII gene expression in the intestine appear therefore to have been conserved for more than 400 million years. 275|Essential hypertension (EH) is a complex disorder that results from the interaction of a number of susceptibility genes and environmental factors. We studied an isolated Sardinian village (Talana) in which the prevalence of hypertension is comparable to that in most Western populations. Talana exhibits features, such as slow demographic growth, high inbreeding, a low number of founders, stable lifestyle and culture, and accurate genealogical records, that make it suitable for the study of complex disorders. Clinical assessment of the entire adult population (N= approximately 1,000) identified approximately 100 hypertensive subjects. For our study, we selected the individuals with the most-severe EH (i.e., diastolic blood pressure >100 mm Hg), belonging to a single deep-rooted pedigree (12 generations), whose common ancestors lived in the 17th century. We performed a three-stage genomewide search using 36 affected individuals, by means of parametric linkage and allele-sharing approaches. LOD scores >1 were observed on chromosomes 1, 2, 13, 15, 17, and 19 (stage I). The most striking result was found in a 7.57-cM region on chromosome 2p24-p25. All five nonparametric linkage statistics estimated by the SimWalk2 program lie above the significance threshold of P<.008 for the whole region. Similar significance was obtained for 2p24-25 when parametric linkage (LOD score 1.99) and linkage disequilibrium mapping (P=.00006) were used, suggesting that a hypertension-susceptibility locus is located between D2S2278 and D2S168. This finding is strengthened by a recent report of linkage with marker D2S168 in a hypertensive sib-pair sample from China. 276|Interleukin 6 (IL-6), which was originally identified as a B-cell differentiation factor, is now known to be a multifunctional cytokine that regulates the immune response, hematopoiesis, the acute phase response, and inflammation. Deregulation of IL-6 production is implicated in the pathology of several disease processes. The expression of constitutively high levels of IL-6 in transgenic mice results in fatal plasmacytosis, which has been implicated in human multiple myeloma. Increased IL-6 levels are also observed in several diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic-onset juvenile chronic arthritis (JCA), osteoporosis, and psoriasis. IL-6 is critically involved in experimentally induced autoimmune disease, such as antigen-induced arthritis (AIA), and experimental allergic encephalomyelitis. All these clinical data and animal models suggest that IL-6 plays critical roles in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases. Here we review the evidence for the involvement of IL-6 in the pathophysiology of autoimmune diseases and chronic inflammatory proliferative diseases (CIPD) and discuss the possible molecular mechanisms of its involvement. 277|The human thyroid hormone receptor-associated protein (TRAP)-Mediator complex was originally identified as a large multimeric complex that copurifies with the thyroid hormone receptor (TR) from HeLa cells and markedly enhances TR-mediated transcription in vitro. More recent studies have implicated TRAP-Mediator as a coactivator for a broad range of nuclear hormone receptors as well as other classes of transcriptional activators. Here we present evidence that TRAP-Mediator plays a functional role in androgen receptor (AR)-mediated transcription. We show that several subunits of the complex ligand-dependently coimmunoprecipitate with AR from both prostate cancer LNCaP cells and from HeLa cells stably transfected with AR. The 220-kDa subunit of the complex (TRAP220) can contact the ligand-binding domain of AR in vitro, possibly implicating TRAP220 involvement in targeting AR to the holocomplex. Consistent with a TRAP-Mediator coactivator role, transient overexpression of the TRAP220, TRAP170, and TRAP100 subunits enhanced ligand-dependent transcription by AR in cultured cells. Finally, chromatin immunoprecipitation assays show that TRAP220 is recruited to the androgen-responsive prostate-specific antigen gene promoter in vivo in ligand-stimulated LNCaP cells. Collectively, these data suggest that TRAP-Mediator may play an important coregulatory role in AR-mediated gene expression. 278|The parental origin of the X chromosome of 45,X females has been the subject of many studies, and most of them have shown that the majority (60-80%) of the X chromosomes are maternal in origin. However, studies on the parental origin of normal X chromosomes are relatively limited for Turner syndrome (TS) females with sex chromosome aberrations. In this study, we used PCR-based typing of highly polymorphic markers and an assay of methylation status of the androgen receptor gene to determine the parental origin of normal X chromosomes in 50 unbiased TS females with a variety of karyotypes. Our results showed a higher paternal meiotic error rate leading to the generation of abnormal sex chromosomes, especially in the case of del(Xp) and abnormal Y chromosomes. Isochromosome Xq and ring/marker X chromosomes, on the other hand, were equally likely the result of both maternal and paternal meiotic errors. A thorough review of previous results, together with our data suggests, that the majority of TS karyotype are caused by paternal meiotic errors that generate abnormal sex chromosomes, and that most 45,X cells are generated by mitotic loss of these abnormal sex chromosomes, resulting in maternal X dominance in these cells. 279|Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is characterized by a specific chromosome translocation t(15;17), which results in the fusion of the promyelocytic leukemia gene (PML) and retinoic acid receptor alpha gene (RARalpha). APL can be effectively treated with the cell differentiation inducer all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). NB4 cells, an acute promyelocytic leukemia cell line, have the t(15;17) translocation and differentiate in response to ATRA, whereas HL-60 cells lack this chromosomal translocation, even after differentiation by ATRA. To identify changes in the gene expression patterns of promyelocytic leukemia cells during differentiation, we compared the gene expression profiles in NB4 and HL-60 cells with and without ATRA treatment using a cDNA microarray containing 10,000 human genes. NB4 and HL-60 cells were treated with ATRA (10(-6)M) and total RNA was extracted at various time points (3, 8, 12, 24, and 48h). Cell differentiation was evaluated for cell morphology changes and CD11b expression. PML/RARalpha degradation was studied by indirect immunofluoresence with polyclonal PML antibodies. Typical morphologic and immunophenotypic changes after ATRA treatment were observed both in NB4 and HL-60 cells. The cDNA microarray identified 119 genes that were up-regulated and 17 genes that were down-regulated in NB4 cells, while 35 genes were up-regulated and 36 genes were down-regulated in HL60 cells. Interestingly, we did not find any common gene expression profiles regulated by ATRA in NB4 and HL-60 cells, even though the granulocytic differentiation induced by ATRA was observed in both cell lines. These findings suggest that the molecular mechanisms and genes involved in ATRA-induced differentiation of APL cells may be different and cell type specific. Further studies will be needed to define the important molecular pathways involved in granulocytic differentiation by ATRA in APL cells. 280|Telomere dysfunction and associated fusion-breakage in the mouse encourages epithelial carcinogenesis and a more humanized genomic profile that includes nonreciprocal translocations (NRTs). Here, array comparative genomic hybridization was used to determine the pathogenic significance of NRTs and to determine whether telomere dysfunction also drives amplifications and deletions of cancer-relevant loci. Compared to tumors arising in mice with intact telomeres, tumors with telomere dysfunction possessed higher levels of genomic instability and showed numerous amplifications and deletions in regions syntenic to human cancer hotspots. These observations suggest that telomere-based crisis provides a mechanism of chromosomal instability, including regional amplifications and deletions, that drives carcinogenesis. This model provides a platform for discovery of genes responsible for the major cancers affecting aged humans. 281|Y-chromosomal DAZ (deleted in azoospermia) and autosomal DAZ-like (DAZL) comprise a gene family involved in gametogenesis. Y-chromosomal and autosomal genes only co-exist in humans and old world monkeys, indicating that DAZ genes are a recent acquisition of the Y chromosome. In most mammals, the ancestral Dazl alone is sufficient to complete gametogenesis. It is not yet understood why humans and old world monkeys have a second set of genes that are apparently necessary for spermatogenesis, since deletions removing the Y-chromosomal DAZ are often associated with azoo- or oligospermia. We used transgenic mice carrying either human DAZL or human DAZ on a mouse Dazl null background to investigate the functions of the human homologues. Both transgenes enabled prophase spermatocytes to be produced, mainly of the leptonema/zygonema stage, but failed to promote differentiation into mid- to late pachytenes. The presence of human DAZL resulted in a larger amount of early germ cells compared with that observed in DAZ. The degree of rescue was independent of copy number, integration site or presence of the DAZ repeat region for the DAZ transgenes. These findings confirm that DAZL and DAZ can only substitute for early functions of the murine homologue resulting in the establishment of the germ cell population and partial progression into meiosis. 282|Dysmorphology is the branch of clinical genetics in which clinicians and researchers study and attempt to interpret the patterns of human growth and structural defects. Reaching an accurate diagnosis for children with dysmorphic signs is important to their families, because it makes available all the accumulated knowledge about the relevant condition and may provide the family with the opportunity for interaction with patient or parent support groups. I show in this review that reaching a diagnosis in dysmorphology involves an approach that is not fundamentally different from that of other medical disciplines. Cytogenetic and molecular techniques continue to improve our ability to make precise syndrome diagnoses; however, these tests are expensive and should be used selectively. 283|The role of estrogens in the development and physiology of the male reproductive tract remains provocative, with a growing body of evidence suggesting that estrogens are able to influence normal testis development and physiology, through their classical receptors, estrogen receptor (ER)-alpha and ER-beta. We describe the identification and characterization of a new promoter that is involved in the expression of ER-alpha in the epididymis and in testis. This promoter lies on chromosome 6q25.1, approximately 16 kb upstream of the first coding exon of ER-alpha. Sequence analysis indicates that this promoter has a conventional TATA box and GC box but no upstream CAAT sequence. Alternative splicing results in at least two species of mRNA encoding ER-alpha being synthesized from this promoter. Transcription profiling of human tissues shows that, among those tested, this promoter is predominantly active only in testis and epididymal tissues. Transient transfection assays using this new promoter in a number of cell lines indicate that the region we have identified functions as a promoter and that tissue-specific regulation is likely to be dependent on inhibitory sequences greater than 1 kb upstream of the transcription start site. 284|The objective of this study was to detect the incidence and prognostic value of chromosomal aberrations in metaphase chromosomes (hypodiploidy, hyperdiploidy and/or structural abnormalities) in Ta and T1 transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) of the bladder. Of 266 patients, the metaphase chromosomes of the primary tumour were studied using a direct microscopic analysis and classified into two categories: normal and abnormal. Recurrence and progression were prospectively recorded during a median follow-up period of 40 months and in a retrospective analysis compared with other prognostic factors. Chromosomal abnormalities were found in 48% of Ta tumours and in 92% of T1 tumours. In univariate analysis, chromosomal abnormalities were associated with recurrence-free survival ( P=0.03) and progression-free survival ( P=0.01). In multivariate analysis, chromosomal abnormalities (RR=1.98) and age (RR=0.64) were independent predictors of recurrence-free survival but not progression-free survival. 285|Our recent genome-wide allelotyping analysis of gallbladder carcinoma identified 3p, 8p, 9q and 22q as chromosomal regions with frequent loss of heterozygosity. The present study was undertaken to more precisely identify the presence and location of regions of frequent allele loss involving those chromosomes in gallbladder carcinoma. Microdissected tissue from 24 gallbladder carcinoma were analysed for PCR-based loss of heterozygosity using 81 microsatellite markers spanning chromosome 3p (n=26), 8p (n=14), 9q (n=29) and 22q (n=12) regions. We also studied the role of those allele losses in gallbladder carcinoma pathogenesis by examining 45 microdissected normal and dysplastic gallbladder epithelia accompanying gallbladder carcinoma, using 17 microsatellite markers. Overall frequencies of loss of heterozygosity at 3p (100%), 8p (100%), 9q (88%), and 22q (92%) sites were very high in gallbladder carcinoma, and we identified 13 distinct regions undergoing frequent loss of heterozygosity in tumours. Allele losses were frequently detected in normal and dysplastic gallbladder epithelia. There was a progressive increase of the overall loss of heterozygosity frequency with increasing severity of histopathological changes. Allele losses were not random and followed a sequence. This study refines several distinct chromosome 3p, 8p, 9q and 22q regions undergoing frequent allele loss in gallbladder carcinoma that will aid in the positional identification of tumour suppressor genes involved in gallbladder carcinoma pathogenesis. 286|The effects of lemon pure essential oils on the heat shock-induced apoptosis in human astrocytes cell line CCF-STTG1 were examined. In previous studies, heat shock has been reported to induce the apoptosis or programmed cell death through the activation of caspase-3. Treatment of heat shock on CCF-STTG1 cells markedly induced apoptotic cell death as determined by flow cytometry. Interestingly, pre-treatment with lemon pure essential oils on CCF-STTG1 cells inhibited the heat shock-induced apoptosis. Lemon oil also inhibited the heat shock-induced apoptosis in primary cultured rat astrocytes. To determine whether lemon oil inhibits the heat shock-induced activation of the apoptotic proteases, activation of caspase-3 was assessed by Western blotting. DNA fragmentation, giemsa staining, and heat shock-induced activation of caspase-3 were blocked by lemon pure essential oil, which is consistent with flow cytometry. Poly-ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP), the cysteine protease substrate, was fragmented as a consequence of apoptosis by heat shock. Lemon oil inhibited the PARP fragmentation. These results suggest that lemon pure essential oils may modulate the apoptosis through the activation of the interleukin-1 beta -converting enzyme-like caspases. 287|In a metabolic study of [1-(14)C]geranylgeranial involving rat thymocytes, the radioactivity was mainly incorporated into two metabolites, Z1 and Z2, the latter moving slower than the former on a silica-gel thin-layer plate. The time course of Z1 and Z2 formation superficially suggested a precursor-product relationship between Z1 and Z2. The two metabolites were chemically converted to their methyl esters on treatment with trimethylsilyl diazomethane. Z1 was cochromatographed with E,E,E-geranylgeranoic acid (GGA). Z2 was prepared in a large quantity from geranylgeranial using thymocytes, and purified by TLC followed by ESI (negative ion mode) or EI mass-spectrometry. The observation of a negative ion at m/z 305 on ESI and a molecular ion at m/z 306 (C(20)H(34)O(2)) with fragments similar to GGA on EI implied that Z2 was dihydroGGA, which has been detected in the urine and serum of patients with Refsum disease. The EI mass spectrum of (R)-2,3-dihydroGGA was identical to that of Z2. The diastereomeric amide synthesized from metabolite Z2 with (R)-1-(1-naphtyl)ethylamine was cochromatographed with (R acid, R) amide, not with (S acid, R) amide, which were similarly synthesized from (R)- and (S)-2,3-dihydroGGAs, respectively. In another metabolic study on [1-(14)C]geranylgeraniol (GGOH), the radioactivity was similarly incorporated into a metabolite corresponding to (R)-2,3-dihydroGGA. (R)-2,3-DihydroGGA induced DNA ladder formation with a maximum at 15 mciroM in thymocytes. However, 2,3-dihydrofarnesoic acid did not induce it at all. 288|153Sm-EDTMP is a radiopharmaceutical used in nuclear medicine for relief of metastatic bone pain with promising results, but there are few studies about the effects of 153Sm-EDTMP in human cells. This study was conducted for the evaluation of the cytogenetic effects of 153Sm-EDTMP in blood lymphocytes from patients with bone metastases (without previous radio or chemotherapy), using the chromosome aberration technique. The degree of cytological damage found in in vivo blood cells of patients was compared with those found in in vitro in an adjusted dose-response curve. Blood samples were collected before and 1 hr after the administration of 153Sm-EDTMP(about 42.31 MBq/kg). The frequency of structural chromosome aberration per cell observed in 1 hr samples (0.054+/-0.035 CA/cell) was higher than basal ones (0.031+/-0.026 CA/cell), although this difference was not statistically significant (p= 0.101). For in vitro assay, blood samples were exposed to different concentrations of 153Sm-EDTMP, during 1 hr (0.37-1.11 MBq/ml). An increase in the frequency of chromosome aberration per cell as a function of the radioactive concentration was found. The data were adjusted by linear regression model (Y= 3.52+/-2.24 x 10(-2) + 11.15+/-3.46 x 10(-2) X). The frequency of aberration/cell found in vivo was 0.054 and for the same activity in vitro was 0.098, this difference being statistically significant (p = 0.02). This result may be related to blood clearance, osteoblastic activity and individual variability. For a more accurate analysis, the study of more donors is necessary. 289|We examined more than 700 DNA sequences (full length chromosomes and plasmids) for stretches of purines (R) or pyrimidines (Y) and alternating YR stretches; such regions will likely adopt structures which are different from the canonical B-form. Since one turn of the DNA helix is roughly 10 bp, we measured the fraction of each genome which contains purine (or pyrimidine) tracts of lengths of 10 bp or longer (hereafter referred to as 'purine tracts'), as well as stretches of alternating pyrimidines/purine (pyr/pur tracts') of the same length. Using this criteria, a random sequence would be expected to contain 1.0% of purine tracts and also 1.0% of the alternating pyr/pur tracts. In the vast majority of cases, there are more purine tracts than would be expected from a random sequence, with an average of 3.5%, significantly larger than the expectation value. The fraction of the chromosomes containing pyr/pur tracts was slightly less than expected, with an average of 0.8%. One of the most surprising findings is a clear difference in the length distributions of the regions studied between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Whereas short-range correlations can explain the length distributions in prokaryotes, in eukaryotes there is an abundance of long stretches of purines or alternating purine/pyrimidine tracts, which cannot be explained in this way; these sequences are likely to play an important role in eukaryotic chromosome organisation. 290|OBJECTIVE: To validate a new combination of a viability assay and Fluorescence in Situ Hybridsation (FiSH) techniques using X- or Y-DNA probes to assay the viability of each single population within bidirectional mixed lymphocyte cultures (MLCs). STUDY DESIGN: We determined the absolute viable lymphocyte counts of each population in bidirectional maternal-fetal MLCs as well as in bidirectional MLCs between male and female unrelated adults using a combination of a viability assay and additional sex discrimination by FiSH, and compared the results with the classical tritiated thymidine incorporation assay and with sex discrimination by metaphase number. RESULTS: The results of the total viability assay correlated with those of the tritiated thymidine incorporation assay. The differentiation of each single population by FiSH showed, as in the metaphase assay, that the relationship between viable maternal and neonatal cells was shifted significantly (p<0.05) towards the neonatal cells, while the relationship of the viable cells in the MLCs between unrelated adults was balanced. CONCLUSION: Our results show that X/Y discrimination by FiSH would be a useful tool for analyzing the immunologic network by bidirectional MLCs. The main advantage over sex discrimination by metaphase counting is that not only the proliferating cells but all viable cells are taken into account. An additional aspect would be the possibility to sort the cells according to surface markers (e.g. CD8+ HLA DR+) before discrimination by X and Y chromosomes. 291|OBJECTIVE: To determine the common deletion region of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on chromosome 8p21-8p22 in adenocarcinomas of lung, and facilitate identification of candidate tumor suppressor genes associated with adenocarcinoma of lung. METHODS: PCR and microsatellite analysis were used to examine the LOH frequency of 17 microsatellite loci at the 8p21-8p22 in the samples resected from 32 patients with lung adenocarcinoma and adenosquamous carcinoma. The relationship of LOH for each marker to pathological grade and that to clinical stage are investigated. RESULTS: Thirty-one out of the 32 (96.67%) samples showed allelic loss in at least one of the 17 markers. The most frequent LOH loci were mainly located in the three regions: D8S254-261, D8S1827-1731, and D8S1135 loci. Among them, the LOH frequency of D8S261 locus was related to the stage of tumor (P < 0.05). CONCLUSION: An interval of common deletion on chromosome 8p22, encompassing D8S254-261, D8S1827-1731 and D8S1135, might harbor candidate tumor suppressor gene(s) associated with pathogenesis of adenocarcinoma of lung. 292|We present a case of a girl with both Angelman syndrome and split-cord malformation. The child was initially referred at the age of 2.5 years, for developmental delay and a possible diagnosis of spina bifida occulta, based on the presence of a hair tuft located on the midline of the lumbar area. Magnetic resonance imaging of the spine showed split-cord malformation below L1, whereas a cytogenetically detected deletion of chromosome bands 15q11-q13 (SNRPN) confirmed the clinical diagnosis of Angelman syndrome. Split-cord malformation or diastematomyelia is a rare form of spina bifida occulta that occurs sporadically and is not particularly related to specific syndromes. Hair patches or other distinctive cutaneous stigmata such as those seen in the present case have not, to our knowledge, been reported in other patients with Angelman syndrome; therefore, the association of Angelman syndrome and split-cord malformation in this child is probably coincidental. Spinal cord abnormalities have not been consistently reported in patients with Angelman syndrome; only one adult patient with Angelman syndrome and spina bifida occulta has been reported, and this association was probably considered fortuitous. However, some relatively uncommon clinical features such as deterioration of gait, lower limb malformations, and bladder dysfunction, particularly as the patients age, although nonspecific, are reminiscent of such a cause. We therefore urge clinicians to look for cutaneous stigmata along the spine and consider the evaluation of the spinal cord in children with apparent paraparesis, out of proportion to that usually seen in Angelman syndrome, should our case report not just be a coincidental observation. 293|Seventeen children with congenital generalized lipodystrophy or Berardinelli-Seip Congenital Lipodystrophy (BSCL) from 12 consanguineous sibships were observed in Oman. All children had widespread absence of adipose tissue from infancy together with apparent muscle hypertrophy and hepatomegaly. They did not appear to represent a single homogenous entity, and it was possible to subclassify the cases into two distinct groups. In the first group of seven cases, the features were similar to other published cases with acanthosis nigricans, raised insulin levels, and insulin resistance. In this group, there was an association between the degree of acanthosis nigricans and the severity of the disorder. Molecular analysis of these cases showed homozygosity at the BSCL2 locus on chromosome 11q13 in four of the seven cases. In the second group of ten cases, there were striking abnormalities in both skeletal and nonskeletal muscle. Reduced exercise tolerance and percussion myoxedema were observed in skeletal muscle, while infantile hypertrophic pyloric stenosis, prominent veins (phlebomegaly), disturbance of cardiac rhythm, and cardiomyopathy were observed in nonskeletal muscle. There was evidence against homozygosity in some cases for the known loci for BSCL, and this group may represent a new clinical syndrome with lipodystrophy at a different genetic location. 294|Two site-specific shuttle integration vectors were developed with two different chromosomal bacteriophage integration sites to facilitate strain construction in Listeria monocytogenes. The first vector, pPL1, utilizes the listeriophage U153 integrase and attachment site within the comK gene for chromosomal insertion. pPL1 contains a useful polylinker, can be directly conjugated from Escherichia coli into L. monocytogenes, forms stable, single-copy integrants at a frequency of approximately 10(-4) per donor cell, and can be used in the L. monocytogenes 1/2 and 4b serogroups. Methods for curing endogenous prophages from the comK attachment site in 10403S-derived strains were developed. pPL1 was used to introduce the hly and actA genes at comK-attBB' in deletion strains derived from 10403S and SLCC-5764. These strains were tested for second-site complementation in hemolysin assays, plaquing assays, and cell extract motility assays. Unlike plasmid-complemented strains, integrated pPL1-complemented strains were fully virulent in the mouse 50% lethal dose assay. Additionally, the PSA phage attachment site on the L. monocytogenes chromosome was characterized, and pPL1 was modified to integrate at this site. The listeriophage PSA integrates in the 3' end of an arginine tRNA gene. There are 17 bp of DNA identity between the bacterial and phage attachment sites. The PSA prophage DNA sequence reconstitutes a complete tRNA(Arg) gene. The modified vector, pPL2, was integration proficient at the same frequency as pPL1 in common laboratory serotype 1/2 strains as well as serotype 4b strains. 295|The t(8;21)(q22;q22) translocation, which fuses the ETO gene on human chromosome 8 with the AML1 gene on chromosome 21 (AML1-ETO), is one of the most frequent cytogenetic abnormalities associated with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). It is seen in approximately 12 to 15% of AML cases and is present in about 40% of AML cases with a French-American-British classified M2 phenotype. We have generated a murine model of the t(8;21) translocation by retroviral expression of AML1-ETO in purified hematopoietic stem cells (HSC). Animals reconstituted with AML1-ETO-expressing cells recapitulate the hematopoietic developmental abnormalities seen in the bone marrow of human patients with the t(8;21) translocation. Primitive myeloblasts were increased to approximately 10% of bone marrow by 10 months posttransplant. Consistent with this observation was a 50-fold increase in myeloid colony-forming cells in vitro. Accumulation of late-stage metamyelocytes was also observed in bone marrow along with an increase in immature eosinophilic myelocytes that showed abnormal basophilic granulation. HSC numbers in the bone marrow of 10-month-posttransplant animals were 29-fold greater than in transplant-matched control mice, suggesting that AML1-ETO expression overrides the normal genetic control of HSC pool size. In summary, AMLI-ETO-expressing animals recapitulate many (and perhaps all) of the developmental abnormalities seen in human patients with the t(8;21) translocation, although the animals do not develop leukemia or disseminated disease in peripheral tissues like the liver or spleen. This suggests that the principal contribution of AML1-ETO to acute myeloid leukemia is the inhibition of multiple developmental pathways. 296|The observations of Skakkebaek and the evolution of the concept of intratubular germ cell neoplasia (or testicular intraepithelial neoplasia (TIN)) indicate that most, but not all, germ cell tumors of the testis evolve from a common neoplastic precursor lesion: intratubular germ cell neoplasia, unclassified type (IGCNU). It is defined as the presence of malignant germ cells within the seminiferous tubules. At 5 years about 50% of patients with a testicular biopsy positive for IGCNU have developed invasive germ cell tumors, and only a small fraction remain free of invasive tumors by 7 years. Orchiectomy is the treatment of choice in patients with unilateral IGCNU, and low-dose radiation is efficacious in patients with bilateral IGCNU (although sterility is certain). So far, there is only one published report of occurrence of two cases of germ cell cancer despite previous local radiotherapy to the testis. A recent study demonstrated an estimated risk of recurrent IGCNU following chemotherapy of 21% and 42% at 5 and 10 years, respectively. 297|Both cytogenetically visible and cryptic deletions of the terminal region of chromosome 22q are associated with a clinical phenotype including mental retardation, delay in expressive speech development, hypotonia, normal to accelerated growth and minor facial dysmorphic features. The genes responsible for the development of the phenotype have not yet been identified, but a distal localization is probable, since the cytogenetically visible and the cryptic deletions show a similar pattern of symptoms. We report a 33-year-old woman with a submicroscopic 22q13 deletion, mild mental retardation, speech delay, autistic symptoms and mild facial dysmorphic features. The deletion was mapped by FISH using cosmid probes from terminal 22q13, and the size of the deletion was estimated to be 100 kb. Three genes are affected by the deletion in this patient. ACR and RABL2B are deleted and proSAP2 is disrupted. This observation, together with recently published data, supports the notion that proSAP2 is the most important contributor to the 22q13 deletion phenotype. 298|PURPOSE: The "nail-patella syndrome" (NPS) is an autosomal dominant hereditary systemic disease. The underlying defect of the LMX1B gene is localised on chromosome 9q34 and causes various typical clinical signs such as onychodysplasia, patella hypoplasia, renal involvement and open angle glaucoma. PATIENTS: A 42-year-old mother and her 4-year-old son were examined in our hospital in order to exclude ocular involvement in a genetically confirmed "nail-patella syndrome". A clinical examination including corneal topography, gonioscopy as well as measurement of intraocular pressure and bulbus length was performed. RESULTS: The examination of both patients showed NPS-specific symptoms, however the boy revealed no indications of glaucoma. He suffered from marked amblyopia caused by excessive astigmatism of the left eye and a bilateral moderate hyperopia. CONCLUSION: Because of the co-segregation between the syndrome and open angle glaucoma, NPS patients should undergo regular ophthalmological controls including measurement of intraocular pressure. Experiments on mice have shown that mutations of the LMX1B gene result in alterations of several structures of the anterior segments. Thus, the described refraction abnormality could be the consequence of structural changes at the corneal level due to NPS. 299|BACKGROUND: Polymorphisms within the beta subunit of the high-affinity receptor for IgE (Fc epsilon R1-beta ) on chromosome 11q13 have been related to atopy and asthma and the lymphotoxin alpha (LT alpha) gene on chromosome 6 is implicated in asthma. OBJECTIVE: To elucidate the association of polymorphisms in the Fc epsilon R1-beta and LT alpha genes to IgE responses and asthma in a family-orientated rural population. METHODS: A total of 461 adult farmers, who participated in an epidemiological follow-up study on respiratory symptoms among farmers on the Swedish island of Gotland, were examined. The traits assessed included serum total IgE, IgE antibody responses to 21 common inhalant allergens and asthma. RESULTS: The 237G mutation was only detected in seven persons. Atopy was found to be associated with the RsaI-ex7 AB-genotype (OR = 1.9; P = 0.04). The RsaI-ex7 B allele had a significant influence on IgE responses to pollens and dust mites (OR = 5.5; P = 0.03 and OR = 5.2; P = 0.049, respectively). The influence of this allele was stronger when the association towards single dust mite species (Lepidoglyphus destructor) was estimated (OR = 7.1, P = 0.03) and the association increased even more when the major allergen of L. destructor (rLep d 2) was analysed (OR = 11.2, P = 0.02). These associations were independent of sex, age and smoking, and the estimates of RsaI-in2 independent of RsaI-ex7. RsaI-in2, RsaI-ex7 and LT alpha genotypes were unassociated with total serum IgE. No significant difference in the distribution of RsaI-in2, RsaI-ex7 and LT alpha genotypes was found among subjects with atopy or asthma compared to healthy controls. CONCLUSION: This study supports the notion that polymorphisms in the Fc epsilon R1-beta gene have significant effects on IgE responsiveness. Secondly, dust mites in rural populations influence the expression of genes on chromosome 11q13. 300|The history of a forty year old patient is presented who was admitted with a clinical picture of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Laboratory findings, bone marrow morphology and molecular investigations supported this diagnosis, including b3/a2 as well as b2/a2 chimeric mRNA expression in support of a Philadelphia chromosome positive chronic myeloproliferation. In a fraction of the bone marrow content, however, an infiltrate different from that of CML could be seen. In addition, the morphology, cytochemistry, immunophenotyping and molecular analysis indicated that the coexisting neoplasia is hairy cell leukemia (HCL). Cell lineage specific interphase cytogenetic analysis proved a clonal relationship between the two neoplasias in a way that the HCL arose from one of the B-cells which, based on two cytogenetic markers, belonged to the original CML clone. 301|Familial hypomagnesemia with secondary hypocalcemia (OMIM 602014) is an autosomal recessive disease that results in electrolyte abnormalities shortly after birth. Affected individuals show severe hypomagnesemia and hypocalcemia, which lead to seizures and tetany. The disorder has been thought to be caused by a defect in the intestinal absorption of magnesium, rather than by abnormal renal loss of magnesium. Restoring the concentrations of serum magnesium to normal values by high-dose magnesium supplementation can overcome the apparent defect in magnesium absorption and in serum concentrations of calcium. Life-long magnesium supplementation is required to overcome the defect in magnesium handling by these individuals. We previously mapped the gene locus to chromosome 9q in three large inbred kindreds from Israel. Here we report that mutation of TRPM6 causes hypomagnesemia with secondary hypocalcemia and show that individuals carrying mutations in this gene have abnormal renal magnesium excretion. 302|We studied the distribution of Y-chromosome specific haplotypes (detected by the TaqI polymorphism of probes p49a,f) on a total of 328 Corsican males native of the regions of Ajaccio, Bastia and Corte. Three haplotypes are differential among regions: haplotype XV (A3 C1 D2 F1 I1), preponderant in the North of the island, haplotype V (A2 C0 D0 F1 I1) in the South, and haplotype XII (A3 C0 D1 F1 I0) in the highlands of the centre. Distribution of haplotypes can be explained by Corsican history and geography. 303|Several studies have previously provided some albeit weak evidence for linkage or association between chromosome 19q13 and multiple sclerosis (MS) susceptibility. We performed a two-stage association analysis with 19 markers spanning 7 Mb/5.5 cM of 19q13. In stage 1 analysis (135 MS families) allelic and haplotypic associations were found with markers within or close to the ApoE-ApoC subregion. These observations were taken as a hypothesis, which was tested in stage 2 in 125 families. However, none of the initial associations were replicated suggesting that they were most likely due to chance. Linkage analysis was performed in 27 Finnish multiplex families using 10 microsatellites spanning 23 Mb/24 cM of 19q13. DNA was available from 72 MS patients and 150 unaffected relatives. Parametric and non-parametric linkage analyses did not provide evidence for linkage when all families were tested. After stratifying the families according to HLA-DR15 there was weak evidence for linkage to the 19q13.1 subregion in DR15 negative families (LOD(max)=1.8). Taken together these results do not support a major role of chromosome 19q13.2-q13.3 in MS susceptibility among Finnish MS patients, whereas conclusions on the 19q13.1 subregion are less clear and this region requires further study. 304|Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by fragile bones and high susceptibility to low-trauma fractures. It is a serious health problem, especially in elderly women. Bone mineral density (BMD) has been employed most commonly as the index for defining and studying osteoporosis. BMD has high genetic determination, with heritability ranging from 50 to 90%. Various gene-mapping approaches have been applied to identify specific genes underlying osteoporosis, largely using BMD as the study phenotype. We review here the genetic determination of osteoporosis as defined by BMD and discuss a fundamental issue we encounter in genetic research in osteoporosis: the choice of phenotype(s) to study. We briefly summarize and discuss advantages and disadvantages of various approaches used in genetic studies of osteoporosis. Finally, we review and discuss the current status for mapping and identification of genes for osteoporosis. We focus on linkage studies in humans and quantitative trait loci mapping in mice to supplement the already extensive reviews of association studies made by many investigators for candidate genes. 305|Inactivation of the PTEN/MMAC1 tumor suppressor gene has been linked to tumor progression in several human malignancies. However, the role of PTEN/MMAC1 in the development and progression of the major renal cell carcinoma morphotypes remains controversial. We examined microdissected specimens from 80 conventional (clear cell) renal cell carcinomas (cRCC), 27 papillary renal cell carcinomas (pRCC), and 16 chromophobe renal cell carcinomas (chRCC) for loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at and around the PTEN/MMAC1 locus and for mutations in the PTEN/MMAC1 gene. The results of the molecular studies were correlated with tumor stage, grade, and patient survival. LOH at one or more of the examined loci occurred in 37.5% of cRCC, 29.6% of pRCC and 87.5% of chRCC specimens. The chRCC specimens showed increasing rates of LOH the further that a marker was located toward the q telomer of chromosome 10, consistent with nonspecific genetic disarray in genomically highly unstable tumors. No such pattern was discernible in the cRCC and pRCC. In the cRCC, LOH at intragenic PTEN/MMAC1 microsatellite markers (indicating deletional events involving the actual PTEN/MMAC1 gene) was significantly associated with tumor death, with 85.7% of such patients dying, whereas only 45.3% of patients without intragenic LOH died (P =.018). There were no PTEN/MMAC1 mutations in our specimens. We conclude that PTEN/MMAC1 inactivation may play a role in the progression of cRCC. Biallelic inactivation may preferentially occur by nonmutational mechanisms, or, alternatively, haploinsufficiency of PTEN/MMAC1 may be sufficient to affect tumor progression in cRCC. 306|Ganglioglioma is a mixed neuronal and glial tumor first described by Perkin in 1926. Because of its rare occurrence in the central nervous system, the pathogenesis of this neoplasm is still largely unknown. Previous studies of ganglioglioma mainly focused on histologic features, immunohistochemical analysis, clinical treatment, and patient outcome. Very few cytogenetic and molecular genetic studies have been reported on this neoplasm. To better understand the mechanism underlying the development of ganglioglioma, we performed comparative genomic hybridization analysis to investigate chromosomal imbalances across the entire genome in five cases of gangliogliomas. Loss of genetic material on the short arm of chromosome 9 was a common genetic alteration found in three of five cases. Overrepresentation of partial or the whole chromosome 7 was another recurrent chromosomal imbalance, confirmed by fluorescence in situ hybridization. Immunohistochemical analysis was performed; all five cases revealed no reaction or low expression for epidermal growth factor receptor antibody. Our study highlights chromosomal regions for further fine mapping and investigation of candidate tumor suppressor genes involved in the pathogenesis of ganglioglioma. 307|Hemangioblastomas of the central nervous system (CNS) may occur sporadically or in association with von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) syndrome. The authors present four patients with no family history or clinical evidence of VHL syndrome in whom extensive, progressive, en plaque coating of the brainstem and spinal cord with hemangioblastomas developed 1 to 8 years after complete resection of a solitary cerebellar hemangioblastoma. Analysis included detailed physical, biochemical, radiological, and pathological examinations in all four patients, combined with family pedigree analysis. In addition, a detailed investigation of the VHL gene was undertaken. Allelic loss, comparative genomic hybridization (CGH), single-stranded conformational polymorphism screening, CpG island methylation status, and X chromosome inactivation clonality analyses were performed. Although there was no evidence of germline alterations in the VHL gene on clinical and radiological examination or in the family history (all four patients) or analysis of peripheral blood (three patients), somatic deletion of one copy of the VHL gene occurred in these tumors. These findings indicate that the multiple, separate deposits of tumors were likely derived from a single clone. Results of CGH indicate that one or several additional genes are probably involved in the malignant behavior of the hemangioblastomas in these patients. Furthermore, the malignant biological and clinical behavior of these tumors, in which multiple sites of subarachnoid dissemination developed 1 to 8 years after initial complete resection, followed by progressive tumor growth and death of the patients, occurred despite a histological appearance typical of benign hemangioblastomas. Malignant hemangioblastomatosis developed 1 to 8 years after resection of an isolated cerebellar hemangioblastoma. Alterations of the VHL gene may be permissive in this setting, but other genes are likely to be the source of the novel biological and clinical presentation of the disseminated hemangioblastomas in these patients. This appears to represent a novel condition in which the product of one or more mutations in several genes permits malignant tumor behavior despite retention of a benign histological picture, a circumstance previously not recognized in CNS tumors. 308|Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) play a vital role in cellular growth control, but far less is known about these signalling pathways in the context of embryonic development. Duration and magnitude of MAPK activation are crucial factors in cell fate decisions, and reflect a balance between the activities of upstream activators and specific MAPK phosphatases (MKPs). Here, we report the isolation and characterization of the murine Pyst3 gene, which encodes a cytosolic dual-specificity MKP. This enzyme selectively interacts with, and is catalytically activated by, the 'classical' extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs) 1 and 2 and, to a lesser extent, the stress-activated MAPK p38alpha. These properties define the ability of this enzyme to dephosphorylate and inactivate ERK1/2 and p38alpha, but not JNK (c-Jun N-terminal kinase) in vivo. When expressed in mammalian cells, the Pyst3 protein is predominantly cytoplasmic. Furthermore, leptomycin B causes a complete redistribution of the protein to the nucleus, implicating a CRM (chromosomal region maintenance)1/exportin 1-dependent nuclear export signal in determining the subcellular localization of this enzyme. Finally, whole-mount in situ hybridization studies in mouse embryos reveal that the Pyst3 gene is expressed specifically in the placenta, developing liver and in migratory muscle cells. Our results suggest that this enzyme may have a critical role in regulating the activity of MAPK signalling during early development and organogenesis. 309|We experienced a case of 62-year-old woman who was admitted for the evaluation of her trembling hands. She was diagnosed as Williams syndrome (WS) by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis. She was short in stature, had a characteristic face and moderate mental retardation, whereas she was talkative and gregarious. She also presented impaired visuospatial cognition, cerebellar ataxia and tremor like involuntary movement of the hands. No remarkable abnormality is noted in MRI of the brain. MRA study of the brain revealed the arteriosclerotic vascular change, such as elongation of basilar artery and dilatation of bilateral carotid arteries. Heterozygous microdeletion of chromosome 7q11.23 of this patient is typical for WS, the delction including elastin (ELN) and LIMK 1 gene. Although she was complicated by diabetes mellitus and hyperlipidemia, she had no cardiovascular abnormalities like supravalvular aortic stenosis (SVAS), and survived to her age in good condition. The tremor-like involuntary movement disappeared after her discharge and its mechanism remains to be elucidated. 310|OBJECTIVE: To determine whether microchimerism can be implicated in Sjögren's syndrome (SS) by studying minor salivary glands, one of the targets of the disease. METHODS: Labial salivary gland (LSG) biopsy specimens from 16 female patients with primary SS and 11 with systemic sclerosis (SSc) (a disease in which microchimerism is frequently detected) were analyzed. All 27 women had a history of pregnancy with a male baby. Specimens were microdissected, and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed using the unique sex-determining region Y gene probe. RESULTS: The sensitivity of PCR for detecting male cells in LSG was high; the presence of 3 male cells was consistently detected in DNA extracted from a normal female LSG specimen to which male DNA had been added, and 1 male cell was detected in 50% of specimens analyzed. Male DNA was not found in any of the specimens from the 16 SS patients but was detected in 5 (45%) of 11 SSc specimens (P = 0.006). No differences in the rate of detection were found between patients with diffuse and limited SSc (male DNA detected in 2 of 3 and 3 of 8, respectively; P = 0.55) or between patients with and those without secondary SS (1 of 6 and 4 of 5, respectively; P = 0.08). CONCLUSION: The results of our study strengthen the possibility that microchimerism is implicated in SSc. This is the first study to demonstrate the presence of chimeric cells in LSG from 45% of SSc patients, independent of the presence of secondary SS. However, microchimerism was not detected in LSG from patients with primary SS, suggesting that the pathogenesis of the 2 diseases is different. 311|PURPOSE: Differential cDNA library screening was performed on 7 human lung adenocarcinomas and 7 human lung squamous cell carcinomas and their corresponding adjacent normal tissues using a human lung cDNA library constructed from the normal bronchoalveolar cells of a 72-year-old male smoker. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Of the 2758 clones that were differentially expressed between normal and tumor tissues in the preliminary cDNA library screening analysis, 1163 clones were confirmed by dot blot, revealing a confirmation rate of >40%. DNA of confirmed clones was sequenced and was subjected to GenBank Blast searches. RNA expression levels were then individually analyzed by semiquantitative reverse transcription-PCR. RESULTS: Ninety-two genes/sequences were differentially expressed in adenocarcinomas and/or squamous cell carcinomas compared with their corresponding normal tissues. Several genes were underexpressed by at least 50% in both tumor types such as c-fos, decorin, alpha-2-macroglobulin, platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule 1, EGR1, and fibronectin. Ribosomal protein S3 was underexpressed only in squamous cell carcinomas, whereas expression of hepatocyte growth factor activator inhibitor type 2, ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme UBC9, and clone 333E23 on chromosome Xq21.1 were altered only in adenocarcinomas. Several genes discovered recently of which the functions are unknown, such as KIAA0728 and KIAA0425, were also differentially expressed in both adenocarcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas of the lung. CONCLUSIONS: Many of these known and novel genes may be involved in human lung tumorigenesis; therefore, additional characterization is warranted and will be beneficial to the understanding of this deadly disease. 312|Weill-Marchesani syndrome (WMS) is a rare disease characterized by short stature, brachydactyly, joint stiffness, and characteristic eye abnormalities, including microspherophakia, ectopia lentis, and glaucoma. Both autosomal recessive and autosomal dominant modes of inheritance have been described in association with WMS. We have performed a genome-wide search in two large consanguineous families of Lebanese and Saudian origin consistent with an autosomal recessive mode of inheritance. Here, we report the linkage of the disease gene to chromosome 19p13.3-p13.2 (Zmax=5.99 at theta=0 at locus D19S906). A recombination event between loci D19S905 and D19S901 defines the distal boundary, and a second recombination event between loci D19S221 and D19S840 defines the proximal boundary of the genetic interval encompassing the WMS gene (12.4 cM). We hope that our ongoing studies will lead to the identification of the disease-causing gene. 313|In some Palestinian communities, the prevalence of inherited prelingual deafness is among the highest in the world. As an initial step towards understanding the genetic causes of hearing loss in the Palestinian population, 48 independently ascertained probands with non-syndromic hearing loss were evaluated for mutations in the connexin 26 gene. Of the 48 deaf probands, 11 (23%) were homozygous or compound heterozygous for mutations in GJB2. Five different mutations were identified: ivs1(+1) G-->A, 35delG, 167delT, T229C, 235delC. Nine deaf probands were homozygous and only two compound heterozygous. Among 400 hearing Palestinian controls, one carrier was observed (for 167delT). We show that GJB2 ivs1(+1) G-->A disrupts splicing, yielding no detectable message. Linkage disequilibrium analysis suggests, in the Palestinian and Israeli populations, a common origin of the 35delG mutation, which is worldwide, and of 167delT, which appears specific to Israeli Ashkenazi and Palestinian populations. A high prevalence of deafness, high frequency of homozygosity rather than compound heterozygosity among deaf, and low mutation carrier frequency together reflect the high levels of consanguinity of many extended Palestinian families. Some of the 25 families with multiple cases of inherited prelingual deafness and wildtype GJB2 sequences may represent as-yet-unknown genes for inherited hearing loss. 314|X chromosome inactivation results in dosage equivalency for X-linked gene expression between males and females. However, some X-linked genes show variable X inactivation, being expressed from the inactive X in some females but subject to inactivation in other women. The human tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 ( TIMP1) gene falls into this category. As TIMP1 and its target metalloproteinases are involved in many biological processes, women with elevated TIMP1 expression may exhibit different disease susceptibilities. To address the potential impact of variable X inactivation, we analyzed TIMP1 expression levels by using an RNase protection assay. The substantial variation of TIMP1 expression observed in cells with monoallelic TIMP1 expression precluded analysis of the contribution of the inactive X to total TIMP1 RNA levels in females, so we examined expression in rodent/human somatic cell hybrids. TIMP1 expression levels varied more widely in hybrids retaining an inactive X than in those with an active X chromosome, suggesting variable retention of the epigenetic silencing mechanisms associated with X inactivation. Therefore, we investigated the contribution of methylation at the promoter to expression level variation and found that methylation of the TIMP1 promoter correlated with instability and low level expression, whereas stable TIMP1expression from the inactive X equivalent to that seen from the active X chromosome was observed when the promoter was unmethylated. Since all female cell lines examined showed methylation of the TIMP1 promoter, the contribution of expression from the inactive X appears minimal. However, as women age, they may accumulate cells stably expressing TIMP1 from the inactive X, with a resulting increase of TIMP1, which may explain some sex differences in various late-onset disorders. 315|Recent progress in the development of single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) maps within genes and across the genome provides a valuable tool for fine-mapping and has led to the suggestion of genomewide association studies to search for susceptibility loci for complex traits. Test statistics for genome association studies that consider a single marker at a time, ignoring the linkage disequilibrium between markers, are inefficient. In this study, we present a generalized T2 statistic for association studies of complex traits, which can utilize multiple SNP markers simultaneously and considers the effects of multiple disease-susceptibility loci. This generalized T2 statistic is a corollary to that originally developed for multivariate analysis and has a close relationship to discriminant analysis and common measure of genetic distance. We evaluate the power of the generalized T2 statistic and show that power to be greater than or equal to those of the traditional chi2 test of association and a similar haplotype-test statistic. Finally, examples are given to evaluate the performance of the proposed T2 statistic for association studies using simulated and real data. 316|One of the major progress in fetal medicine in recent years is the increased sensitivity of sonographic screening for foetal malformations, due to technical improvement but also to a better training of professionals. Screening for chromosomal abnormalities is no longer based on maternal age alone. Second trimester maternal serum screening (MSS) is increasingly used: thus in 1997, 376,798 MSS tests were performed in France, yielding to the prenatal diagnosis of 391 cases of Down's syndrome. First trimester sonographic nuchal translucency measurement (NTM) is an effective screening method when performed under stringent conditions. Quality control however, is more difficult to implement on a large scale for NTM than for MSS. Performing screening tests sequentially carries a danger of generating an unnecessarily high number of amniocentesis, which may be obviated by a rational calculation of an individual's risk to carry an aneuploid baby. First trimester MSS is expected to become standard practice in the next years, probably in combination with NTM. Cytogenetics underwent substantial innovations recently, due to the ever-increasing use of molecular cytogenetics. FISH techniques allow: 1) precise analysis of unexpected structural chromosomal abnormalities diagnosed by routine amniocentesis, 2) rapid screening of the most common aneuploidies by amniocentesis when a fetal structural anomaly is detected by 3rd trimester ultrasound, 3) diagnosis of micro-deletions suspected by fetal ultrasound or post-mortem. Prenatal diagnosis by maternal blood sampling and fetal cells or DNA analysis is now part of routine clinical practice in selected cases, such as fetal sexing in families affected by an X linked disease. Thus one can select those pregnancies eligible to invasive prenatal diagnosis. Pre implantation diagnosis, which has not been legal in France until 1999 is now increasingly used as an alternative to first trimester diagnosis. As for fetal therapy, a major recent breakthrough is the prenatal management of twin to twin transfusion syndrome by either amnioreduction or laser coagulation of inter-twin vascular shunts. In addition, new pathophysiologic concepts involving the renin angiotestin system could lead to further therapeutic innovations. A European randomised trial is now being completed to establish the respective indications of drainage and Laser. All this underscores that fetal medicine is no longer solely a succession of dramatic technical breakthroughs, but is entered an era of large-scale diffusion that requires evidence based evaluation. 317|Pseudoachondroplasia (PSACH) (OMIM#177170) and multiple epiphyseal dysplasia (MED) are separate but overlapping osteochondrodysplasias. PSACH is a dominantly inherited disorder characterized by short-limb short stature, loose joints, and early-onset osteoarthropathy. The diagnosis is based on characteristic clinical and radiographic findings. Only mutations in the cartilage oligomeric matrix protein (COMP) gene have been reported in PSACH, and all family studies have been consistent with linkage to the COMP locus on chromosome 19. Multiple epiphyseal dysplasia (MED) is a relatively mild chondrodysplasia but like PSACH, MED causes early-onset joint degeneration, particularly of the large weight-bearing joints. Given the clinical similarity between PSACH and MED, it was not surprising that the first MED locus identified was the COMP gene (EDM1). Mutations causing MED have now been identified in five other genes (COL9A1, COL9A2, COL9A3, DTDST, and MATN3), making MED one of the most genetically heterogeneous disorders. This article reviews the clinical features of PSACH and MED, the known mutations, and the pathogenetic effect of COMP mutations on the cartilage extracellular matrix. 318|X-linked mental retardation (XLMR) is an inherited condition that causes failure to develop cognitive abilities, owing to mutations in a gene on the X chromosome. The latest XLMR update lists up to 136 conditions leading to 'syndromic', or 'specific', mental retardation (MRXS) and 66 entries leading to 'nonspecific' mental retardation (MRX). For 9 of the 66 MRX entries, the causative gene has been identified. Our recent discovery of the contiguous gene deletion syndrome ATS-MR (previously known as Alport syndrome, mental retardation, midface hypoplasia, elliptocytosis, OMIM #300194), characterized by Alport syndrome (ATS) and mental retardation (MR), indicated Xq22.3 as a region containing one mental retardation gene. Comparing the extent of deletion between individuals with ATS-MR and individuals with ATS alone allowed us to define a critical region for mental retardation of approximately 380 kb, containing four genes. Here we report the identification of two point mutations, one missense and one splice-site change, in the gene FACL4 in two families with nonspecific mental retardation. Analysis of enzymatic activity in lymphoblastoid cell lines from affected individuals of both families revealed low levels compared with normal cells, indicating that both mutations are null mutations. All carrier females with either point mutations or genomic deletions in FACL4 showed a completely skewed X-inactivation, suggesting that the gene influences survival advantage. FACL4 is the first gene shown to be involved in nonspecific mental retardation and fatty-acid metabolism. 319|The in vitro Comet assay, a sensitive, quick and relatively cheap test, could become a valid alternative to the commonly used in vitro chromosomal aberration test, in the preliminary evaluation of new chemical entities early in the development of new pharmaceuticals. A validation of the Comet assay procedure using whole human blood or CHL cells was carried out in comparison with a cytogenetic test utilizing the same target cells with the following compounds which demonstrated positive results in standard chromosomal aberration tests: two well-documented clastogens, methyl methanesulphonate and cyclophosphamide, and eight novel drugs in early development. A 3 h exposure time, in both the absence and presence of metabolic activation, was used for the in vitro Comet assay. Agreement between the results of the Comet assay and the chromosomal aberration tests was found to be satisfactory on a qualitative basis, although positive results in the Comet assay were always at higher doses than in the cytogenetic test. This indicates a reduction in sensitivity using the former genotoxicity end-point. In order to try to explain this observation, a range of exposure times (0.25, 0.5, 1, 2 and 3 h) were investigated in two further experiments to determine the optimal time for detecting Comet induction in this assay procedure. Maximum levels of DNA damage (in terms of Comet induction) were recorded at earlier sampling times (0.25-1 h) in whole human blood using the same positive doses observed in HPLT. Further studies need to be performed to confirm these findings. It is possible that strand breaks are too short lived to allow detection after a 3 h treatment period (due to preferential repair), indicating the need for shorter exposure times in some cases to optimize their detection. 320|AIMS: Cytogenetic data on solitary fibrous tumours (SFT) are very limited. We studied a benign pleural SFT for its ultrastructural and immunohistochemical details, and made cytogenetic analyses for comparison with other genetic and ultrastructural studies of SFT. RESULTS: Immunohistochemistry showed strong positivities for CD34 and vimentin, but no reactions with anti-cytokeratins and epithelial membrane antigens. Electron microscopy revealed primitive desmosomes in our SFT. The results thus evinced fibroblast-like cells with intermediate epithelial-mesenchymal character. Comparative genomic hybridization of the tumour revealed losses of 1p33-->pter, 17pter q21, entire copies of chromosomes 19 and 22, and gains of 1p21-p22, 2q23-q32.3, 3pl2-q13.2, 4p14-q28, 6p12-q21, 9p21-->pter and 13q21-q31. Furthermore, there was loss of 20q, as was previously reported elsewhere in a case of benign and a case of malignant SFT. CONCLUSIONS: The results furnish further evidence of the involvement of -20q in SFT. In addition, they show that SFT may have complex genomic imbalances and primitive features, despite having a benign appearance. 321|Autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP) is a heterogeneous set of progressive retinopathies caused by several distinct genes. One locus, the RP10 form of adRP, maps to human chromosome 7q31.1 and may account for 5-10% of adRP cases among Americans and Europeans. We identified two American families with the RP10 form of adRP by linkage mapping and used these families to reduce the linkage interval to 3.45 Mb between the flanking markers D7S686 and RP-STR8. Sequence and transcript analysis identified 54 independent genes within this region, at least 10 of which are retinal-expressed and thus candidates for the RP10 gene. A screen of retinal transcripts comparing retinas from normal mice to retinas from crx-/crx- knockout mice (with poorly differentiated photoreceptors) demonstrated a 6-fold reduction in one candidate, inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase 1 (IMPDH1; EC Since many of the genes known to cause retinitis pigmentosa are under CRX control in photoreceptors, IMPDH1 became a high-priority candidate for mutation screening. DNA sequencing of affected individuals from the two American RP10 families revealed a GAC-->AAC transition in codon 226 substituting an asparagine for an aspartic acid in both families. The identical mutation was also found in a British RP10 family. The Asp226Asn missense mutation is present in all affected individuals tested and absent from unaffected controls. The aspartic acid at codon 226 is conserved in all IMPDH genes, in all species examined, including bacteria, suggesting that this mutation is highly deleterious. Subsequent screening of probands from 60 other adRP families revealed an additional family with this mutation, confirming its association with retinitis pigmentosa and the relatively high frequency of this mutation. Another IMPDH1 substitution, Val268Ile, was also observed in this cohort of patients but not in controls. IMPDH1 is a ubiquitously expressed enzyme, functioning as a homotetramer, which catalyzed the rate-limiting step in de novo synthesis of guanine nucleotides. As such, it plays an important role in cyclic nucleoside metabolism within photoreceptors. Several classes of drugs are known to affect IMPDH isoenzymes, including nucleotide and NAD analogs, suggesting that small-molecule therapy may be available, one day, for RP10 patients. 322|BACKGROUND/AIMS: Fas-induced apoptosis is one of the main forms of apoptosis occurring in hepatocytes. We have previously demonstrated that the human hepatoma cell line Hep3B is resistant to Fas-mediated apoptosis. In this study, we investigated whether the human Fas receptor itself, or the Fas transduction pathway was responsible for the resistant phenotype. METHODS: Clones of Hep3B cells overexpressing the mouse Fas gene (Hep3B(mfas)) were generated by transfection, and apoptosis was studied by (i) chromatin condensation and nuclear fragmentation, (ii) flow cytometry, (iii) DNA fragmentation and (iv) poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase cleavage. RESULTS: Use of the species-specific and agonistic anti-mFas monoclonal antibody (JO2), showed that the mFas receptor was correctly routed to the plasma membrane of Hep3B(mfas) cells. Using the four above-mentioned criteria, we demonstrated that JO2 triggered mFas-mediated apoptosis of Hep3B(mfas), but not of Hep3B(pCi) cells (transfected with an empty vector). CONCLUSIONS: Our data show (i) that the Fas signaling pathway can be completed when a functional mFas receptor is expressed in Hep3B cells, and thus, (ii) that the death-inducing signaling complex components and the effector caspases are functional in Hep3B cells. Moreover, they suggest that the Fas subunits are not pre-assembled at the cell membrane before receptor-ligand interaction. 323|Evaluating the potential genetic components of complex disease will likely be aided through the use of dense polymorphism maps. Previously, we reported evidence for linkage with diabetic nephropathy on chromosome 3q in a region encompassing the type 1 angiotensin II receptor (AGTR1) gene. To further investigate any role for this gene in disease onset, we set out to design a dense polymorphism map spanning the AGTR1 locus for the purpose of association studies. Toward this goal, we have developed a technique for rapid identification of polymorphisms in long stretches of genomic DNA. This approach uses long-range PCR, DNA pooling, and transposon-based DNA sequencing. Using this technique, we efficiently validated and genotyped 18 polymorphisms spanning the 60.5-kb AGTR1 locus. Our panel of polymorphisms has an average spacing of 3.2 kb and an average minor allele frequency of 24%. 324|The authors describe a clear cell chondrosarcoma of the larynx. The clear cell type is a rare variant of chondrosarcoma that only twice has been reported in this localization. The light-microscopic diagnosis of the actual case was confirmed by immunohistochemical results, in particular by positive staining for S-100 protein and collagen type II, and ultrastructural findings. Loss of heterozygosity analysis demonstrated allelic loss at 9p22 and 18q21, but neither in the region of the Rb gene on chromosome 13q nor at the p53 locus on chromosome 17p where allelic loss has already been reported in chondrosarcomas. Furthermore, our molecular genetic investigations revealed a methylation of the cell cycle control gene p16, which is localized on chromosome 9p. This characteristic has been recorded previously only in high-grade chondrosarcomas. Mutations in the exons of p16, alterations of the putative tumor suppressor gene MMAC1/PTEN on chromosome 10q, or an amplification of the cyclin D1 gene (CCND1) on 11q13, which were found to be changed in other studies of chondrosarcomas, could not be demonstrated here. 325|A pleomorphic undifferentiated tumor primarily located in the retroperitoneum with a phenotype compatible with an extraosseous Ewing tumor/peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor (ET/pPNET) pattern and unusual molecular features is described. Immunohistochemically, HBA-71 (CD99/mic2) and several neural markers were intensively expressed together with scattered cells expressing carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA). Short-term culture showed biphasic neuroblastic and epithelioid cell populations, with the latter expressing germ cell markers (CEA, alpha-fetoprotein, and the beta-subunit of chorionic gonadotrophin). Conventional cytogenetics displayed several chromosomic rearrangements, especially a complex translocation t(17,2,22,13) (q21::q11-->q33::q12-->q13::q14). These structural abnormalities were confirmed using fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis. Molecular studies revealed EWS-FEV fusion transcripts (exon 7 of the EWS gene and exon 2 of the FEV gene). In addition, a new p53 mutation not previously reported in ET/pPNET involving exon 5 codon 138: GCC to GAC (Ala/Asp) was detected.In our case, we emphasize the presence of atypical features not only from the phenotypic point of view but also at the genetic level as well as the value of detecting such markers in the differential diagnosis with other abdominal pleomorphic tumors. 326|Telomeres are distinctive structures, composed of a repetitive DNA sequence and associated proteins, that cap the ends of linear chromosomes. Telomeres are essential for maintaining the integrity and stability of eukaryotic genomes. In addition, under some circumstances, telomeres can influence cellular gene expression. In mammals, the length, structure, and function of telomeres have been proposed to contribute to cellular and organismal phenotypes associated with cancer and aging. Here, we discuss what is known about the basis for the links between telomeres, aging and cancer, and some of the known and proposed consequences of telomere dysfunction and maintenance for mammalian cells and organisms. 327|X-linked hyper-IgM syndrome (XHIM) is a rare primary immunodeficiency disorder, caused by mutations of the gene encoding CD40 ligand (CD40L; CD154). We report the clinical manifestations and mutational analysis of the CD40L gene observed in a male patient from a XHIM family. Having hypogammaglobulinemia and elevated IgM, the 3-yr-old boy exhibited the characteristic clinical features of XHIM. The patient suffered from frequent respiratory infections, and chronic enteritis caused by Cryptosporidium parvum. In addition, a lymph node biopsy and a culture from this sample revealed C. neoformans infection. Activated lymphocytes from the patient failed to express CD40L on their surface as assessed by flow cytometry and a missence mutation (W140R) was found at the XHIM hotspot in his CD40L cDNA to confirm the diagnosis. Genetic analysis of the mother and sister showed a heterozygote pattern, indicating carrier status. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the molecular diagnosis of an XHIM patient in Korea. 328|We report a male patient with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML; French-American-British M2) associated with AML1-ETO. Cytogenetic studies showed a complex karyotype including a novel translocation (8;21;14)(q22;q22;q24) in all analyzed cells. This three-way translocation was confirmed with spectral karyotyping. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis for AML1-ETO chimeric transcripts showed the presence of the fusion product with the expected size. Translocation (8;21;14)(q22;q22;q24) is a novel variant of t(8;21)(q22;q22), possibly having a common molecular pathogenetic mechanism. 329|Cryptic subtelomeric chromosome anomalies have been recognized as a significant cause of dysmorphology and mental retardation. To determine whether the clinical cytogenetics laboratory should screen routinely for these aberrations, we have tested 250 patients with idiopathic mental retardation/developmental delay, either isolated (53) or associated with dysmorphic features and/or malformations in the absence of a recognizable syndrome (197). All had normal karyotypes at the 550-850 band level. Subtelomeric anomalies were found in 1/53 of the first group (1.9%) and 8/197 of the second group (4.1%). In one patient, two separate anomalies were present: a deletion (not inherited) and a duplication (inherited). It is possible that one of these 10 observed aberrations might represent a rare and previously unreported polymorphism and one a rare cross-hybridization. Our study supports the proposition that cryptic subtelomeric rearrangements are a significant cause of idiopathic mental retardation/developmental delay, but both the diversity of the phenotypes of the positive cases and the wide diversity of their associated chromosome abnormalities emphasize the central problem for the clinical cytogenetics laboratory-that of choosing the most productive patient base for this useful diagnostic test. 330|Isolated hereditary renal magnesium (Mg) wasting may result from mutations in the renal tubular epithelial cell tight junction protein paracellin-1 gene or the tubular Na(+),K(+)-ATPase gamma-subunit gene FXYD2. The FXYD2 gene mutation was discovered in two Dutch families as an autosomal dominant disorder. It is characterized by isolated renal Mg wasting with resultant symptomatic hypomagnesemia. The defective FXYD2 gene in these families mapped to chromosome 11q23. Here, we describe an American family with a similar phenotype but without linkage to the 11q23 locus; in testing 22 individuals in the pedigree multipoint LOD scores for five different loci from the 11q23 region were equal to -2.97. Compared with unaffected family members and normal controls, affected family members harbored significant reductions in the serum and lymphocyte Mg concentrations and in the serum immunoreactive PTH level with a 4-fold increase in the mean fractional urinary Mg excretion rate during a normomagnesemic clamp. Bone mineral density at the lumbar spine and proximal femur was significantly reduced in affected family members. In conclusion, our data demonstrate locus heterogeneity for the phenotype of isolated renal Mg wasting with hypomagnesemia and suggest that hypomagnesemia, at least in this pedigree, may be associated with low bone mass. 331|Cryptosporidium parvum proteases have been associated with release of infective sporozoites from oocysts, and their specific inhibition blocks parasite excystation in vitro. Additionally, proteases have been implicated in the processing of parasite adhesion molecules found on the surface of sporozoites and merozoites. In this study, we cloned and expressed the C. parvum aminopeptidase N gene by screening a large insert, P1 artificial chromosome library with a probe identified from a Cryptosporidium genome survey-sequencing project. Analysis of the predicted protein encoded by the 2.3 kb gene demonstrated a high degree of homology with prokaryotic and eukaryotic aminopeptidases. The 783 amino acid sequence predicted a M(r) of approximately 89,000. The active site sequence was found to be highly conserved when compared with other Apicomplexan aminopeptidases. Motifs commonly found in aminopeptidases of this class and a unique single Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) tripeptide motif predictive of cell adhesion were identified. The aminopeptidase N mRNA was expressed in infective sporozoites and during the infection of human HCT-8 enterocytes as revealed by reverse transcription PCR. 332|Social phobia, particularly in its generalized form, has a genetic component in its etiology as suggested by positive twin studies and child temperament studies of social anxiety. Observations from functional imaging research suggest that dopamine function may be abnormal in the brains of patients with social phobia. Our investigation examined polymorphisms in the dopamine D2, D3 and D4 receptor genes, plus the dopamine transporter gene in a sample consisting of 17 multiplex social phobia families. We employed both parametric and non-parametric methods to test for linkage. Linkage was excluded for all loci under the broad diagnostic category. In the medium diagnostic category, the D3 receptor gene showed non-significant positive LOD scores (LOD = 0.62). We are able to clearly exclude a major effect for each of the four dopamine gene markers under the broad diagnosis of social phobia. Additional studies of dopamine system genes will be necessary to define clearly their role in social phobia. 333|Chromatin remodeling is a key step in overcoming the nucleosomal repression of active transcription in eukaryotes. The mammalian SWI/SNF ATP-dependent chromatin-remodeling complexes contain multiple subunits. The ATPase activities in these complexes are attributable to either BRG-1 or the related Brahma protein. The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR), after binding xenobiotic ligands such as 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), associates with the AHR nuclear translocator (ARNT), and the dimer so formed activates transcription of several genes, including the cytochrome P4501A1 (CYP1A1) gene. We show that BRG-1 potentiates AHR/ARNT-mediated reporter gene activity in a TCDD-dependent fashion in Hepa1c1c7 cells. Introduction of BRG-1 into the BRG-1- and hBrm-deficient SW13 and C33A human cell lines also enhances expression from a transiently transfected AHR/ARNT-dependent reporter gene. Replenishment of BRG-1 to SW13 cells also restores endogenous cytochrome P4501A1 (CYP1A1) gene expression, whereas an ATPase-deficient mutant of BRG-1 is unable to do so. Chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis demonstrated that BRG-1 associates with the enhancer region of the mouse CYP1A1 gene in vivo in a TCDD- and ARNT-dependent fashion, suggesting the specific recruitment of BRG-1 by AHR/ARNT. Finally, we demonstrate that the glutamine-rich subdomain of the transcriptional activation domain of AHR can interact with BRG-1. Together these studies reveal a functional involvement of BRG-1 in activating CYP1A1 gene transcription and implicate the importance of ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling activity on inducible gene expression mediated by AHR/ARNT. 334|X-linked myotubular myopathy (MTM1) is a rare developmental disorder of skeletal muscle that is characterized by the presence of abnormal central nuclei in biopsy specimens taken from affected individuals. To date 133 different mutations have been identified in the MTM1 gene worldwide. We report here mutations detected in 50 additional U.S. families with biopsy-proven MTM1. Forty-one of the patients have not been described previously, including 18 with novel mutations. Eighty-eight percent of the mothers of sporadic cases that were studied were identified as carriers, extending the previously reported high-carrier frequency for this disorder. Clinical information collected on the majority of patients helps to further correlate genotype with phenotype, and implications of these data for genetic counseling in families are discussed. 335|To address the possible genetic relationship between primary mediastinal large-B-cell lymphoma (PMLBCL) and diffuse large-B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), we compared DNA copy number changes identified by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) analysis of 40 PMLBCL and 91 DLBCL tumors. We assessed their karyotypes by G-banding; amplification of MYC, BCL2, and REL genes by Southern blotting; and incidence of nonpolymorphic BCL6 mutations by single-strand conformation polymorphism analysis (SSCP). Overall, CGH identified overlapping and nonoverlapping patterns of DNA copy number changes in the two groups. Among the latter changes, gains of chromosomes 8, 11, 15, and 16 and losses of chromosomes 5, 10, 15, 16, 17, and 20 were seen only in DLBCL, and gains of chromosomes 10, 21, and 22 and losses of chromosomes 11, 13, and 18 were seen only in PMLBCL. Several overlapping changes were identified in both groups, with variation in incidence. Statistical analysis of these changes showed significant gains of chromosomes 3 (P G and delEX1-EX7, account for more than 95% of disease alleles. The reported method of genotyping for the delEX1-EX7 mutation involves a cumbersome multistep procedure. In the present study, a new simplified one-step procedure is described that detects this mutation in both patients and carriers. An improved procedure is also described for detection of the IVS3-1A --> G mutation. Using these improved procedures, we have characterized the ML IV mutant alleles in 27 patients and 95 of their relatives from 22 families, and in 123 unrelated and unaffected Ashkenazi Jewish controls. Of the 27 ML IV patients, 16 patients (59.3%) were found to be homozygous for the IVS3-1A --> G mutation and 1 patient (3.7%) homozygous for the delEX1-EX7 mutation. Additionally, 9 patients (33.3%) were compound heterozygotes for IVS3-1A --> G/delEX1-EX7. Among the 123 Ashkenazi Jewish controls, two individuals were identified as heteroallelic with one IVS3-1A --> G mutation (carrier frequency: approximately 1 in 61); none showed the delEX1-EX7 mutation. The modifications described here provide a more facile means of genotyping patients and carriers and expand the possibilities for screening at-risk populations. 367|Chromosomal aberrations were comparatively assessed in nuclei extracted from synovial tissue, primary-culture (P-0) synovial cells, and early-passage synovial fibroblasts (SFB; 98% enrichment; P-1, P-4 [passage 1, passage 4]) from patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA; n = 21), osteoarthritis (OA; n = 24), and other rheumatic diseases. Peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL) and skin fibroblasts (FB) (P-1, P-4) from the same patients, as well as SFB from normal joints and patients with joint trauma (JT) (n = 4), were used as controls. Analyses proceeded by standard GTG-banding and interphase centromere fluorescence in situ hybridization. Structural chromosomal aberrations were observed in SFB (P-1 or P-4) from 4 of 21 RA patients (19%), with involvement of chromosome 1 [e.g. del(1)(q12)] in 3 of 4 cases. In 10 of the 21 RA cases (48%), polysomy 7 was observed in P-1 SFB. In addition, aneusomies of chromosomes 4, 6, 8, 9, 12, 18, and Y were present. The percentage of polysomies was increased in P-4. Similar chromosomal aberrations were detected in SFB of OA and spondylarthropathy patients. No aberrations were detected in i) PBL or skin FB from the same patients (except for one OA patient with a karyotype 45,X[10]/46,XX[17] in PBL and variable polysomies in long-term culture skin FB); or ii) synovial tissue and/or P-1 SFB of normal joints or of patients with joint trauma. In conclusion, qualitatively comparable chromosomal aberrations were observed in synovial tissue and early-passage SFB of patients with RA, OA, and other inflammatory joint diseases. Thus, although of possible functional relevance for the pathologic role of SFB in RA, these alterations probably reflect a common response to chronic inflammatory stress in rheumatic diseases. 368|Protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) consists of 3 subunits: the catalytic subunit, C, and the regulatory subunits, A and B. The A and C subunits both exist as 2 isoforms (alpha and beta) and the B subunit as multiple forms subdivided into 3 families, B, B' and B". It has been reported that the genes encoding the Aalpha and Abeta subunits are mutated in various human cancers, suggesting that they may function as tumor suppressors. We investigated whether Aalpha and Abeta mutations occur in human gliomas. Using single strand conformational polymorphism analysis and DNA sequencing, 58 brain tumors were investigated, including 23 glioblastomas, 19 oligodendrogliomas and 16 anaplastic oligodendrogliomas. Only silent mutations were detected in the Aalpha gene and no mutations in the Abeta gene. However, in 43% of the tumors, the level of Aalpha was reduced at least 10-fold. By comparison, the levels of the Balpha and Calpha subunits were mostly normal. Our data indicate that these tumors contain very low levels of core and holoenzyme and high amounts of unregulated catalytic C subunit. 369|Alterations of glycine receptor alpha1 and beta subunit genes have been associated with hypertonic motor disorders in both mice and humans. Mutations in genes encoding other ligand- and voltage-gated ion channels have been identified in rare monogenic forms of idiopathic generalized epilepsies (IGE). We tested the hypothesis that allelic variants of the glycine receptor subunit genes, GLRA3 and GLRB, both localized on chromosome 4q, confer susceptibility to common subtypes of IGE. Mutation screening was carried out in index patients of 14 IGE families. No pathogenic mutation was found, but two intronic polymorphisms were detected in the GLRB gene, and four intronic, three exonic, and one 3'-UTR polymorphisms were identified for the GLRA3 gene. Subsequent screening for exonic and 3'-UTR polymorphisms in GLRA3 showed no statistical difference between a group of sporadic IGE patients (n = 104) and a control group (n = 141). The genotype frequencies for exonic and 3'-UTR polymorphisms in GLRA3 showed no statistically significant difference between IGE patients (n = 104) and an ethnically matched control group (n = 141). Thus, no association between IGE and alterations in GLRA3 or GLRB genes could be detected, indicating that both genes do not play a major causative role in the epileptogenesis of common IGE subtypes. Still, these novel single nucleotide polymorphisms may be useful markers for candidate gene analyses of other disorders. 370|We report a prenatal case of a maternally inherited abnormal chromosome 16, originally interpreted as a pericentric inversion only, but after family studies re-interpreted as a pericentric inversion (16) accompanied by an unbalanced (7;16) translocation. Because of the inversion 16 and an elder son with developmental delay and craniofacial dysmorphic features, in the past karyotyped as 46,XY, the chromosomes 16 of the mother and son were carefully re-examined. Using a whole chromosome 16 paint and sub-telomere probes of 16p and 16q, the karyotype of the mother was shown to be 46,XX,inv(16)(p11.2q23.2).ish t(7;16)(q36;p13.3)inv(16). Subsequently one chromosome 16 of the elder son appeared to be a der(16)t(7;16)(q36;p13.3). This is probably the result of a meiotic crossover between the chromosomes 16 in the mother. The prenatal karyotype was finally interpreted as 46,XY,inv(16)(p11.2q23.2).ish der(16)t(7;16)(q36;p13.3)inv(16). This is the same cytogenetic imbalance as his elder brother: a partial trisomy of chromosome 7 (q36-->qter) and a partial monosomy of chromosome 16 (p13.3-->pter). 371|The recurrent translocation t(5;11)(q35;p15.5) associated with a 5q deletion, del(5q), has been reported in childhood acute myeloid leukemia (AML). We report the cloning of the translocation breakpoints in de novo childhood AML harboring a cryptic t(5;11)(q35;p15.5). Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis demonstrated that the nucleoporin gene (NUP98) at 11p15.5 was disrupted by this translocation. By using 3'--rapid amplification of complementary DNA ends (3'-RACE) polymerase chain reaction, we identified a chimeric messenger RNA that results in the in-frame fusion of NUP98 to a novel gene, NSD1. The NSD1 gene has 2596 amino acid residues and a 85% homology to the murine Nsd1 with the domain structure being conserved. The NSD1 gene was localized to 5q35 by FISH and is widely expressed. The reciprocal transcript, NSD1-NUP98, was also detected by reverse transcriptase--polymerase chain reaction. This is the first report in which the novel gene NSD1 has been implicated in human malignancy. (Blood. 2001;98:1264-1267) 372|Recent spectacular advances in the technologies and strategies for DNA sequencing have profoundly accelerated the detailed analysis of genomes from myriad organisms. The past few years alone have seen the publication of near-complete or draft versions of the genome sequence of several well-studied, multicellular organisms - most notably, the human. As well as providing data of fundamental biological significance, these landmark accomplishments have yielded important strategic insights that are guiding current and future genome-sequencing projects. 373|We report on a 4(1/2)-year-old girl, who presented with multiple minor anomalies consistent with trisomy for 4p. GTG-banding identified a de novo terminal inversion duplication of distal 4p, dup(4)(p16.3p15.3). Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with a wcp4 probe confirmed the chromosome 4 origin of the additional material. FISH with a 4p subtelomere probe, D4F26, showed no signal on the dup(4) chromosome identifying a deletion of this region. Molecular analysis of 4p STS loci confirmed the subtelomeric deletion and showed loss of the paternal allele in this region. The paternal origin of the deleted region and homozygosity for one of the two paternal alleles within the region of the duplication suggests that a sister chromatid rearrangement on the paternal chromosome 4 was involved in the formation of the dup(4) chromosome. To date, the best characterized mechanisms of formation of chromosome duplications are terminal inversion duplications of 8p, which were shown to be derived from rearrangements at maternal meiosis-I. Our data show that mechanisms other than a maternal meiosis-I rearrangement can lead to the formation of terminal inversion duplications. FISH analysis with the appropriate subtelomeric probes is warranted in terminal inversion duplications to check for associated deletions. 374|The appearance and expansion of donor white blood cells in a recipient after transfusion has many potential biologic ramifications. Although patients with HIV infection are ostensibly at high risk for microchimerism, transfusion-associated graft-versus-host disease (TA-GVHD) is rare. The purpose of this study was to search for sustained microchimerism in such patients. Blood samples were collected from 93 HIV-infected women (a subset from the Viral Activation Transfusion Study, an NHLBI multicenter randomized trial comparing leukoreduced versus unmodified red blood cell [RBC] transfusions) before and after transfusions from male donors. Donor lymphocytes were detected in posttransfusion specimens using a quantitative Y-chromosome-specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay, and donor-specific human leukocyte antigen (HLA) alleles were identified with allele-specific PCR primers and probes. Five of 47 subjects randomized to receive nonleukoreduced RBCs had detectable male lymphocytes 1 to 2 weeks after transfusion, but no subject had detectable male cells more than 4 weeks after a transfusion. In 4 subjects studied, donor-specific HLA haplotypes were detected in posttransfusion specimens, consistent with one or more donors' cells. None of 46 subjects randomized to receive leukoreduced RBCs had detectable male lymphocytes in the month after transfusion. Development of sustained microchimerism after transfusion in HIV-infected patients is rare; HIV-infected patients do not appear to be at risk for TA-GVHD. 375|We present here an in vivo view of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II promoter assembly, nucleosome modifications and gene expression mediated by the class II transactivator (CIITA). Acetylation and deacetylation of histones H3 and H4 at the HLA-DRA promoter were found to occur during a time-course that depended on CIITA expression and binding. Expression of a CIITA mutant, which lacked the activation domain, induced H4 but not H3 histone acetylation. This suggested that multiple histone acetyltransferase activities are associated with MHC class II expression. H4 acetylation was mapped to Lys8, which implicated several histone acetyltransferases as possible modulators of this activity. 376|In this review we summarize current knowledge on sonographic findings of the umbilical cord and the risk they impose for chromosomal abnormalities of the fetus. A Medline search of the literature was performed and the pertinent English-language literature was reviewed. Anatomical and Doppler abnormalities of the umbilical cord may be associated with an increased risk of chromosomal aberrations in the fetus. Therefore, level II prenatal sonography should also include a careful examination of the umbilical cord. 377|p53 tumor suppressor is a subject of several post-translational modifications, including phosphorylation, ubiquitination and acetylation, which regulate p53 function. A new covalent modification of p53 at lysine 386 by SUMO-1 was recently identified. To elucidate the function of sumoylated p53, we compared the properties of wild type p53 and sumoylation-deficient p53 mutant, K386R. No differences were found between wild type p53 and K386R mutant of p53 in transactivation or growth suppression assays. Moreover, overexpression of SUMO-1 has no effect on p53-regulated transcription. Biochemical fractionation showed that sumoylated p53 is localized in the nucleus and is tightly bound to chromatin structures. p53 and SUMO-1 co-localized in PML nuclear bodies in 293 cells and the nucleoli in MCF7 and HT1080 cells. However, sumoylation-deficient p53 mutant showed a similar pattern of intranuclear localization, suggesting that SUMO-1 does not target p53 to subnuclear structures. These data indicate that SUMO-1 modification of p53 at lysine 386 may not be essential for p53's cellular localization, transcriptional activation, or growth regulation. 378|OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to determine the frequency of chromosome 22q11 deletions in patients with isolated anomalies of the aortic arch and its branches. BACKGROUND: Chromosome 22q11 deletions are often present in patients with certain forms of congenital cardiovascular disease, including tetralogy of Fallot, truncus arteriosus and interruption of the aortic arch. Among patients with these anomalies, chromosome 22q11 deletion is more common in those with abnormal aortic arch laterality or branching. METHODS: We studied 66 patients with isolated anomalies of the aortic arch and no associated intracardiac defects for deletions within chromosome 22q11, using fluorescence in situ hybridization with the cosmid probe N25 (D22S75). Arch anomalies included: double aortic arch (n = 22); right aortic arch with aberrant left subclavian artery (n = 28); right aortic arch with mirror-image branching and a vascular ring formed by a left-sided ductus from the descending aorta (n = 5); right aortic arch with mirror-image branching and no vascular ring (n = 4); and left aortic arch with aberrant right subclavian artery (n = 7). In addition, four patients had a cervical aortic arch, four had aortic coarctation and six had hypoplasia/atresia of the proximal pulmonary arteries. RESULTS: Chromosome 22q11 deletions were found in 16 patients (24%) across the full spectrum of anomalies studied. Among the morphologic variables analyzed, only hypoplasia/atresia of the proximal pulmonary arteries correlated with the deletion (p = 0.03). Among patients with a double arch, the frequency of chromosome 22q11 deletion was higher in those with an atretic minor arch than it was in those with a patent minor arch (p = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Chromosome 22q11 deletion is associated with isolated anomalies of laterality or branching of the aortic arch in 24% of cases in our series. These findings should alert the clinician to consider deletion screening in patients with isolated anomalies of the aortic arch. 379|We report a 6-year-old female patient presenting with a sudden and severe single episode of rhabdomyolysis in which screening for a metabolic disorder was negative. Four months after the episode a muscle biopsy was performed and showed a mild pattern of necrosis/regeneration. Upon immunofluorescence, a mosaic pattern of dystrophin deficiency was found, and in the dystrophin deficient muscle fibres, the four proteins of the sarcoglycan complex were also lacking. Genetic analysis showed a duplication of exons 3 to 17 on one X-chromosome of the proband, but not on the mother's X-chromosome. A clearly skewed X-inactivation (85% of the defective X being active) was found and is consistent with the patient being symptomatic. To our knowledge, a spontaneous rhabdomyolysis in a female Duchenne muscular dystrophy carrier has never been reported. 380|Persistent lymphocytosis in large granular lymphocyte leukemia (LGL) may result from defects in activation- or Fas crosslinking-induced cell death. Here we show that Fas crosslinking and CD3 activation causes apoptosis of in vitro activated CD8 T cells, but not of freshly isolated CD8 T cells. Death was partially blocked by a neutralizing antibody to FasL. Inhibition of metalloproteinase-mediated FasL solubilization significantly potentiated induction of cell death. Furthermore, CD3 plus CD28 stimulation resulted in telomeric erosion in LGL cells, and ultimately proliferation ceased. Together, these data indicate that activation- and proliferation-related cell death mechanisms are functional in LGL cells. 381|Most of the Epstein-Barr virus genome in latently infected cells is in a standard nucleosomal structure, but the region encompassing oriP and the Epstein-Barr virus-encoded small RNA (EBER) genes shows a distinctive pattern when digested with micrococcal nuclease. This pattern corresponds to a previously mapped nuclear matrix attachment region. Although the EBER genes are adjacent to oriP, there is only a two- to fourfold effect of oriP on EBER expression. However, sequences containing a consensus ATF site upstream of EBER1 are important for EBER1 expression. 382|X-linked lymphoproliferative disease (XLP) is a rare immune disorder commonly triggered by infection with Epstein-Barr virus. Major disease manifestations include fatal acute infectious mononucleosis, B-cell lymphoma, and progressive dys-gammaglobulinemia. SAP/SH2D1A, the product of the gene mutated in XLP, is a small protein that comprises a single SH2 domain and a short tail of 26 amino acids. SAP binds to a specific motif in the cytoplasmic tails of the cell surface receptors SLAM and 2B4, where it blocks recruitment of the phosphatase SHP-2. Here it is reported that Ly-9 and CD84, 2 related glycoproteins differentially expressed on hematopoietic cells, also recruit SAP. Interactions between SAP and Ly-9 or CD84 were analyzed using a novel yeast 2-hybrid system, by COS cell transfections and in lymphoid cells. Recruitment of SAP is most efficient when the specific tyrosine residues in the cytoplasmic tails of Ly-9 or CD84 are phosphorylated. It is concluded that in activated T cells, the SAP protein binds to and regulates signal transduction events initiated through the engagement of SLAM, 2B4, CD84, and Ly-9. This suggests that combinations of dysfunctional signaling pathways initiated by these 4 cell surface receptors may cause the complex phenotypes of XLP. (Blood. 2001;97:3867-3874) 383|PURPOSE: To examine the role of the nuclear genome in affecting the phenotypic expression of the simplest model of a mitochondrial DNA disease, maternally transmitted deafness. METHODS: Linkage analysis in families with maternally inherited deafness associated with the homoplasmic A1555G mutation. RESULTS: Significant linkage and linkage disequilibrium on chromosome 8 was identified. CONCLUSIONS: This finding represents the first identification of a modifier locus for a human mitochondrial DNA disease and supports the concept of mitochondrial DNA diseases having complex genetic inheritance. The eventual identification of this modifier gene will provide insights into the pathophysiological pathways determining the clinical expression of mitochondrial DNA diseases, an important step toward diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. 384|Testicular cancer is the most common neoplasia occurring in the young male population. The PEB (cisplatin, etoposide and bleomycin) adjuvant chemotherapy usually proposed after orchidectomy in non seminomatous tumours, and in metastatic seminomas, has improved the long-term survival of these patients. Following an azoospermic period, sperm cell recovery is generally observed after treatment delivery, but little is known about the genetic consequences on these new spermatozoa. To estimate the chromosomal consequences of this chemotherapy on sperm cells during the period of recovery of spermatogenesis, sperm cell aneuploidy was studied in testicular cancer patients, at 6-18 months after PEB adjuvant chemotherapy delivery, using fluorescence in-situ hybridization (FISH) of chromosomes 7, 16, 18, X and Y with specific DNA probes. A significant increase in the frequency of diploidy and disomy for chromosomes 16, 18 and XY was observed in treated patients compared with a healthy control group. Spermatozoa aneuploidy occurring during the spermatogenesis recovery period might be a possible side effect of the PEB regimen. Thus, practitioners should be advised to provide counselling about the need for an appropriate duration of contraception. Moreover, genetic counselling should be offered in cases of pregnancy occurring soon after the end of chemotherapy. 385|A large proportion of patients with oligoasthenoteratozoospermia (OAT) have an abnormal karyotype and hence they produce aneuploid gametes. However, a normal karyotype does not exclude the chance of having germ cell aneuploidy, since an altered intra-testicular environment not only damages spermatogenesis, but may also disrupt the mechanisms controlling chromosomal segregation during meiosis. Therefore, this study was undertaken to evaluate the rate of aneuploidy in the spermatozoa of selected patients with abnormal sperm parameters. For this purpose, sperm aneuploidy rate for chromosomes 8, 12, 18, X and Y was evaluated by multicolour fluorescence in-situ hybridization (FISH) in nine patients with teratozoospermia alone and 19 OAT patients of presumably testicular origin. Thirteen normozoospermic healthy men served as controls. Patients with teratozoospermia or OAT had significantly greater disomy and diploidy rates compared with controls, whereas the rate of nullisomy was similar. XY disomy was very low in all groups, suggesting that chromosomal non-disjunction occurs mainly during the second meiotic division. Autosome 12 disomy rate was low in both patients and controls. There was a marked variability of total sperm aneuploidy rate in both groups of patients. Sperm aneuploidy rate was negatively correlated with sperm concentration and particularly with the percentage of normal forms. In conclusion, patients with teratozoospermia or OAT have an increased rate of sperm aneuploidy. This increase is similar in both groups, suggesting that teratozoospermia may be the critical sperm parameter associated with aneuploidy. 386|Three groups of women (aged 20-40 years) exposed to different levels of dioxins were studied in Chapaevsk town: 15 women working at the chemical fertilizer plant where occupational exposure to dioxins is possible; 16 women without dioxins occupational exposure, but living as far as 1-3 km from the plant; 14 women without dioxins occupational exposure and living as far as 5-8 km from the plant. No personal correlation related to dioxins exposure was found by chromosome aberrations (CA) in peripheral blood lymphocytes, micronuclei (MN) and nuclear anomalies in buccal mucosa cells. There were no significant differences between the groups in CA and MN. Karyopyknosis and karyorrhexis were significantly increased in the highest exposed group. 387|The INK4a/ARF locus encodes two cell cycle-regulatory proteins, p16(INK4a)and p14(ARF). Inactivation of the p16(INK4a)(MTS1) tumor suppressor gene by mutations, promoter methylation or gene deletions is a common event in the development of many different human tumors. The present report describes a novel polyA mononucleotide repeat situated 7.2 kb on the telomeric side of the INK4a/ARF locus. This highly polymorphic microsatellite marker (heterozygote frequency: 0.78) proved to be efficient for p16 allele loss and microsatellite instability analyses in human colon cancer. 388|In acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) there are frequently complex karyotypes with multiple structurally altered chromosomes, many of which are marker chromosomes of unknown origin. The aim of this study was to apply comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) to cases of AML or MDS in transformation submitted for routine cytogenetic analysis to investigate whether this approach would yield any further information and, if possible, to predict which cases would benefit from CGH analysis. Nineteen cases with AML or MDS in transformation were analyzed. CGH revealed nine cases with gains or losses of chromosomal material. In six of these cases the chromosomal location of this material was not apparent from cytogenetic analysis especially when multiple markers were present. By using fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with specific libraries for the chromosome regions that showed discordance between CGH and conventional cytogenetics, we were able to identify the chromosome location of material within the karyotype. In this group of six patients, four cases of an unbalanced translocation involving regions of chromosomes 5 and 17 were characterized. Three of these cases had additional abnormalities, including two cases with regions of amplification in which oncogenes are located (MYC, MLL) and one case with a dic(7;21)(p10;p10). In all six cases it was possible to characterize complex chromosomal aberrations such as derivative chromosomes, marker chromosomes, and ring chromosomes. This study demonstrates that CGH can detect true gain and loss of critical chromosome regions more accurately than conventional karyotyping in cases with very complex karyotypes, and can thus prove useful in predicting prognosis and pinpointing areas of the genome that require further study. Also, CGH can be a useful technique to identify the origin of marker chromosomes, and it can assist in choice of probes for confirmatory FISH, when there is no clue provided from the analysis of G-banded chromosomes. 389|Comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) studies have shown that chromosome 8 is a frequent target for chromosomal aberrations in breast cancer. We characterized these aberrations of chromosome 8 in 16 breast cancer cell lines (BT-474, BT-549, CAMA-1, DU-4475, MCF-7, MDA-MB-134, MDA-MB-157, MDA-MB-361, MDA-MB-415, MDA-MB-436, MPE600, SK-BR-3, T-47D, UACC-812, UACC-893 and ZR-75-1) by CGH, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with arm- and locus-specific probes, and spectral karyotyping (SKY). Chromosome 8 was structurally abnormal in 13 of 16 cell lines. Loss of 8p was detected in nine cell lines, gain of entire 8q in six cell lines, 8q21-qter in three, 8q23-qter in two, and 8q12-qter and 8p21-q21 in one cell line. Extra copies of the C-MYC oncogene were found in 11 cell lines, but high-level amplification only in SK-BR-3. Derivative chromosomes including material from chromosomes 8 were complex, and the breakpoints were strikingly dissimilar. Chromosome 11 was the most frequent translocation partner with chromosome 8 (in 7 cell lines). Isochromosomes and/or isoderivative 8q were found in four cell lines. The high frequency and complexity of alterations at 8q indicate a significant pathogenetic role in breast cancer. The high-level amplification of c-myc is less common than previously thought. 390|The usefulness of association studies for fine mapping loci with common susceptibility alleles for complex genetic diseases in outbred populations is unclear. We investigate this issue for a battery of tightly linked anonymous genetic markers spanning a candidate region centered around a disease locus, and study the joint behavior of chi-square statistics used to discover and to localize the disease locus. We used simulation methods based on a coalescent process with mutation, recombination, and genetic drift to examine the spatial distribution of markers with large noncentrality parameters in a case-control study design. Simulations with a disease allele at intermediate frequency, presumably representing an old mutation, tend to exhibit the largest noncentrality parameter values at markers near the disease locus. In contrast, simulations with a disease allele at low frequency, presumably representing a young mutation, often exhibit the largest noncentrality parameter values at markers scattered over the candidate region. In the former cases, sample sizes or marker densities sufficient to detect association are likely to lead to useful localization, whereas, in the latter case, localization of the disease locus within the candidate region is much less likely, regardless of the sample size or density of the map. The effects of increasing sample size or marker density are also investigated. Based upon a single marker analysis, we find that a simple strategy of choosing the marker with the smallest associated P value to begin a laboratory search for the disease locus performs adequately for a common disease allele. We also investigated a strategy of pooling nearby sites to form multiple allele markers. Using multiple degree of freedom chi-square tests for two or three nearby sites, we found no clear advantage of this form of pooling over a single marker analysis. Genet. Epidemiol. 20:432-457, 2001. Published by Wiley-Liss, 2001. 391|Anomalous junction of pancreaticobiliary duct (AJPBD) patients has an increased risk of gallbladder and bile duct carcinomas. However, the relevance of carcinoma with AJPBD is not fully clarified. We performed analysis of loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at p53 locus and immunohistochemistry of p53 and K-ras gene mutation in five cases of gallbladder carcinoma associated with AJPBD. LOH of p53 locus and overexpression of p53 were detected in two out of five (40%) and five out of five (100%), respectively, in the present study. K-ras gene mutation at codon 12 and 13 was not detected (0%, 0/5). These results suggest that aberrations of p53 are involved in carcinogenesis of gallbladder carcinoma associated with AJPBD. Next, in order to find the genetic events besides K-ras mutation and overexpression of mutant p53 in this disease, LOH analysis was performed using 72 microsatellite markers. High frequency of allelic loss (> 50%) was found on 2p (81.8%), 4p (50%), 4q (50%), 8q (60%), 9q (50%), 10p (50%), 14p (60%), 14q (50%), 16p (60%), 19p (50%), 21p (50%) and Xp (66.6%). The highest deletion regions on chromosome 2p24 (3/3, 100%), 14q22 (3/4, 75%) and 21q22 (3/4, 75%) were found. The present study suggests that gallbladder carcinoma associated with AJPBD has high frequent allelic loss and has two new regions which may harbor putative tumor suppressor genes. 392|Mutations in the PHEX gene (phosphate-regulating gene with homologies to endopeptidases on the X chromosome) are responsible for X-linked hypophosphataemia, and studies in the Hyp mouse model of the human disease implicate the gene product in the regulation of renal phosphate (P(i)) reabsorption and bone mineralization. Although the mechanism for PHEX action is unknown, structural homologies with members of the M13 family of endopeptidases suggest a function for PHEX protein in the activation or degradation of peptide factors involved in the control of renal P(i) transport and matrix mineralization. To determine whether PHEX has endopeptidase activity, we generated a recombinant soluble, secreted form of human PHEX (secPHEX) and tested the activity of the purified protein with several peptide substrates, including a variety of bone-related peptides. We found that parathyroid-hormone-related peptide(107-139) is a substrate for secPHEX and that the enzyme cleaves at three positions within the peptide, all located at the N-terminus of aspartate residues. Furthermore, we show that osteocalcin, PP(i) and P(i), all of which are abundant in bone, are inhibitors of secPHEX activity. Inhibition of secPHEX activity by osteocalcin was abolished in the presence of Ca(2+). We suggest that PHEX activity and mineralization may be controlled in vivo by PP(i)/P(i) and Ca(2+) and, in the latter case, the regulation requires the participation of osteocalcin. 393|The microdeletion 4p16 has been found in two rare syndromes. Until now they were considered as two different syndromes: the Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome (WHS) and the Pitt-Rogers-Danks (PRDS) syndrome characterized by a growth retardation before and after birth, microcrania, seizures, characteristic face with thin mouth, maxillary hypoplasia, short and large philtrum, characteristic nose and mental retardation. A case with 4p-16 microdeletion with phenotype characteristics similar to PRDS is reported. The patients described as PRDS are sometimes less seriously affected than patients with WHS. In fact, cases of death are not indicated in the first year of life, internal malformations are less frequent and the face lacks the typical Greek warrior helmet Recent studies have shown that WSS and PRDS are due to the absence of similar if not identical genetic segments and the clinical differences observed could be the outcome of an allele variation on the remaining homologous part. 394|We report two patients with trisomy 21 whose karyotypes revealed unusual translocations. In the first case there was a tandem translocation with two chromosomes 21 attached to the long arm of chromosome 10 (45,XX + tan(10:21;21). In the second case there was an inverted tandem translocation between two chromosomes 21 attached through their long arms (46,XY + dic(21q:21q). The clinical picture in both patients was not different from the usually found in trisomy 21. Since the parent's karyotypes were normal in both cases, it is assumed that both translocations arose "de novo". The need for karyotyping all cases of Down syndrome is emphasized. 395|Human lipocalin-1 (Lcn-1, also called tear lipocalin), a member of the lipocalin structural superfamily, is produced by a number of glands and tissues and is known to bind an unusually large array of hydrophobic ligands. Apart from its specific function in stabilizing the lipid film of human tear fluid, it is suggested to act as a physiological scavenger of potentially harmful lipophilic compounds, in general. To characterize proteins involved in the reception, detoxification, or degradation of these ligands, a cDNA phage-display library from human pituitary gland was constructed and screened for proteins interacting with Lcn-1. Using this method an Lcn-1 interacting phage was isolated that expressed a novel human protein. Molecular cloning and analysis of the entire cDNA indicated that it encodes a 55-kDa protein, lipocalin-1 interacting membrane receptor (LIMR), with nine putative transmembrane domains. The cell membrane location of this protein was confirmed by immunocytochemistry and Western blot analysis of membrane fractions of human NT2 cells. Independent biochemical investigations using a recombinant N-terminal fragment of LIMR also demonstrated a specific interaction with Lcn-1 in vitro. Based on these data, we suggest LIMR to be a receptor of Lcn-1 ligands. These findings constitute the first report of cloning of a lipocalin interacting, plasma membrane-located receptor, in general. In addition, a sequence comparison supports the biological relevance of this novel membrane protein, because genes with significant nucleotide sequence similarity are present in Takifugu rubripes, Drosophila melanogaster, Caenorhabditis elegans, Mus musculus, Bos taurus, and Sus scrofa. According to data derived from the human genome sequencing project, the LIMR-encoding gene has to be mapped on human chromosome 12, and its intron/exon organization could be established. The entire LIMR-encoding gene consists of about 13.7 kilobases in length and contains 16 introns with a length between 91 and 3438 base pairs. 396|The histological subtype of alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma (AR) is characterised by the cytogenetic translocation t(2;13)(q35;q14) in approximately 70% of cases, a rearrangement rarely present in the embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma (ER) subtype. The MYCN gene is amplified in some cases of AR. We present a young man with an unusual pattern, namely solid variant of AR with hypotetraploidy and the t(2;13) in an unbalanced form. The MYCN gene was not amplified on FISH, but showed increased copy number, consistent with ploidy. 397|Primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH) represents the end stage of a disruption of pulmonary vascular integrity, of unknown cause. Although PPH is associated with several systemic disorders, there have hitherto been few clues as to the aetiological factors responsible for the pathogenesis of this condition. As an example of the application of modern molecular genetics and positional cloning, this leader describes the range of studies currently under way, which aim to find the gene that underlies PPH, and summarises the implications of the identification of such a gene. 398|Immunoglobulin gene recombination can result in the assembly of self-reactive antibodies. Deletion, anergy or receptor editing normally silence B cells that produce these autoantibodies. Receptor editing is highly efficient in mouse B cells that carry pre-recombined autoantibody transgenes or gene "knock-ins". However, it has been difficult to identify cells that have edited receptors in unmanipulated mice and humans. To try to identify such cells we isolated and characterized B cells that coexpress surrogate and conventional light chains (V-preB+L+) from the blood of normal human donors. V-preB+L+ B cells express RAG mRNA, display an unusual heavy and light chain antibody repertoire consistent with antiself reactivity, and show evidence of receptor editing. These cells accumulate in the joints of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, consistent with a role for V-preB+L+ B cells and receptor editing in autoimmune disease. 399|Sudden cardiac death occurs in the United States with an incidence greater than 300,000 persons per year. The underlying cause of death is commonly considered to be due to primary or secondary arrhythmias. In cases in which no structural heart disease can be identified, the long QT syndromes (LQTS) are now commonly considered as likely causes. Multiple genes causing LQTS have been identified thus far, all encoding cardiac ion channels. These include two potassium channel alpha-subunits (KVLQT1, HERG), two potassium channel beta-subunits (minK, MiRP1), and one sodium channel gene (SCN5A). The purpose of this review is to describe the current understanding of the molecular genetics of LQTS and the resultant phenotypes. 400|The International Olympic Committee (IOC) officially mandated gender verification for female athletes beginning in 1968 and continuing through 1998. The rationale was to prevent masquerading males and women with "unfair, male-like" physical advantage from competing in female-only events. Visual observation and gynecological examination had been tried on a trial basis for two years at some competitions leading up to the 1968 Olympic Games, but these invasive and demeaning processes were jettisoned in favor of laboratory-based genetic tests. Sex chromatin and more recently DNA analyses for Y-specific male material were then required of all female athletes immediately preceding IOC-sanctioned sporting events, and many other international and national competitions following the IOC model. On-site gender verification has since been found to be highly discriminatory, and the cause of emotional trauma and social stigmatization for many females with problems of intersex who have been screened out from competition. Despite compelling evidence for the lack of scientific merit for chromosome-based screening for gender, as well as its functional and ethical inconsistencies, the IOC persisted in its policy for 30 years. The coauthors of this manuscript have worked with some success to rescind this policy through educating athletes and sports governors regarding the psychological and physical nature of sexual differentiation, and the inequities of genetic sex testing. In 1990, the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) called for abandonment of required genetic screening of women athletes, and by 1992 had adopted a fairer, medically justifiable model for preventing only male "impostors" in international track and field. At the recent recommendation of the IOC Athletes Commission, the Executive Board of the IOC has finally recognized the medical and functional inconsistencies and undue costs of chromosome-based methods. In 1999, the IOC ratified the abandonment of on-site genetic screening of females at the next Olympic Games in Australia. This article reviews the history and rationales for fairness in female-only sports that have led to the rise and fall of on-site, chromosome-based gender verification at international sporting events. 401|Radiation hybrid mapping (RH mapping) is considered as one of the main methods of constructing physical maps of mammalian genomes. In introduction, theoretical prerequisites of developing of the RH mapping and statistical methods of data analysis are discussed. Comparative characteristics of universal commercial panels of the radiation hybrid somatic cells (RH panels) are shown. In experimental part of the work, RH mapping is used to localise nucleotide sequences adjacent to NotI sites of human chromosome 3 with the aim to integrate contig map of NotI clones to comprehensive maps of human genome. Five nucleotide sequences adjacent to the sites of integration of papilloma virus in human genome and expressed in the cells of cervical cancer were localised. It was demonstrated that the region 13q14.3-q21.1 was enriched with nucleotide sequences involved in the processes of oncogenesis. RH mapping can be considered as one of the most perspective applications of the modern radiation biology in the field of molecular genetics, that is, in constructing physical maps of mammalian genomes with high resolution level. 402|Domestic dog breeds show a wide variety of morphologies and offer excellent opportunities to study the molecular genetics of phenotypic traits. We are interested in exploring this potential and have begun by investigating the genetic basis of a short-tail trait. Our focus has been on the T gene, which encodes a T-box transcription factor important for normal posterior mesoderm development. Haploinsufficiency of T protein underlies a short-tail phenotype in mice that is inherited in an autosomal dominant fashion. We have cloned the dog homolog of T and mapped the locus to canine Chromosome (Chr) 1q23. Full sequence analysis of the T gene from a number of different dog breeds identified several polymorphisms and a unique missense mutation in a bob-tailed dog and its bob-tailed descendants. This mutation is situated in a highly conserved region of the T-box domain and alters the ability of the T protein to bind to its consensus DNA target. Analysis of offspring from several independent bobtail x bobtail crosses indicates that the homozygous phenotype is embryonic lethal. 403|Y-chromosome DNA profiles are promising tools in population genetics and forensic science. Here we present DNA profiles of 300 unrelated Y-chromosomes of Norwegian origin. The profile is composed of eight short tandem repeats (STRs) and one single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP). In more than 2/3 of the haplotypes the modular structure in the 5' end of the minisatellite locus DYF155S1 was revealed by minisatellite variant repeat PCR (MVR-PCR) These haplotypes were also typed for deletions of fragment 50f2C (DYF155S2). Allele distribution and paternity exclusion parameters are given for each marker. The degree of haplotype diversity and its implication for statistics are evaluated. In the 300 samples 177 different haplotypes were encountered, of which 137 were observed once only. Analysis showed that the main source of variation is within the population. The Fst values were less than 0.015 in general. Haplotype grouping by the SNP demonstrated two haplogroups (Tat/T and Tat/C). Haplogroup Tat/C--found in 5.7% of the present material - is the same haplogroup as encountered in 60% of Finnish males [Am. J. Hum. Genet. 62 (1998) 1171]. Mutation analysis in 150 father/son pairs (a total of 1200 meiotic events) revealed an average mutation frequency of 0.0042 (95% CI 0.0014-0.0097). 404|Linkage and association of polymorphic markers in the chromosome 5q31-q33 cytokine cluster to atopy and asthma associated phenotypes have been reported by a number of groups. To investigate this region, 29 polymorphic markers were used to genotype a combined set of 233 families. These markers were ordered based upon the genetic data, supplemented by published genetic and physical maps. Significant two-point linkage was observed for asthma (most significant marker IRF1, P = 0.0002) and atopy (CD14SNP, P = 0.0001). Allelic association was observed between D5S463 and atopy (P = 0.002) and the skin prick test index (P = 0.04). The data support the possibility of three asthma/atopy loci in the 5q31-q33 region, each with a relatively small effect. 405|The publication of the first almost complete sequence of a human chromosome (chromosome 22) is a major milestone in human genomics. Together with the sequence, an excellent annotation of genes was published which certainly will serve as an information resource for numerous future projects. We noted that the annotation did not cover regulatory regions; in particular, no promoter annotation has been provided. Here we present an analysis of the complete published chromosome 22 sequence for promoters. A recent breakthrough in specific in silico prediction of promoter regions enabled us to attempt large-scale prediction of promoter regions on chromosome 22. Scanning of sequence databases revealed only 20 experimentally verified promoters, of which 10 were correctly predicted by our approach. Nearly 40% of our 465 predicted promoter regions are supported by the currently available gene annotation. Promoter finding also provides a biologically meaningful method for "chromosomal scaffolding", by which long genomic sequences can be divided into segments starting with a gene. As one example, the combination of promoter region prediction with exon/intron structure predictions greatly enhances the specificity of de novo gene finding. The present study demonstrates that it is possible to identify promoters in silico on the chromosomal level with sufficient reliability for experimental planning and indicates that a wealth of information about regulatory regions can be extracted from current large-scale (megabase) sequencing projects. Results are available on-line at http://genomatix.gsf.de/chr22/. 406|Many pathogenic and commensal organisms are multidrug resistant due to exposure to various antibiotics. Often, this antimicrobial resistance is encoded by integrons that occur on plasmids or that are integrated into the bacterial chromosome. Integrons are commonly associated with bacterial genera in the family Enterobacteriaceae. We determined that class 1 integrases were present in approximately 46% of the isolates from the family Enterobacteriaceae; class 2 integrases were present only among Escherichia coli and Salmonella isolates. Seven percent of veterinary isolates were positive for class 3 integrase by DNA-DNA hybridization but could not be confirmed to be positive by PCR. None of the veterinary isolates possessed the class 4 integrase gene. The distribution of these integrase genes was variable within the members of the family Enterobacteriaceae when some or all integrase classes were absent from a particular genus. There was also considerable variability in the distribution of these integrases within a species, depending on the animal host. Unlike the class 1 integrases, the other integrase class, intI2, appears to be more restricted in its distribution among the members of the family Enterobacteriaceae. There is also considerable variability in the distribution of the class 1 integrases within E. coli strains isolated from different food animals. The class 1 integrases are the most widely disseminated of the four classes among the members of the family Enterobacteriaceae from both the clinical and normal flora of animals. This is the first report to closely examine the distribution of class 2 integrases in members of the family Enterobacteriaceae isolated in the United States. 407|In southern Africa, brown oculocutaneous albinism (BOCA) is a distinct pigmentation phenotype. In at least two cases, it has occurred in the same families as tyrosinase-positive oculocutaneous albinism (OCA2), suggesting that it may be allelic, despite the fact that this phenotype was attributed to mutations in the TYRP1 gene in an American individual of mixed ancestry. Linkage analysis in five families mapped the BOCA locus to the same region as the OCA2 locus (maximum LOD 3.07; theta=0 using a six-marker haplotype). Mutation analysis of the human homologue of the mouse pink-eyed dilution gene (P), in 10 unrelated individuals with BOCA revealed that 9 had one copy of the 2.7-kb deletion. No other mutations were identified. Additional haplotype studies, based on closely linked markers (telomere to centromere: D15S1048, D15S1019, D15S1533, P-gene 2.7-kb deletion, D15S219, and D15S156) revealed several BOCA-associated P haplotypes. These could be divided into two core haplotypes, suggesting that a limited number of P-gene mutations give rise to this phenotype. 408|PURPOSE: In in vivo models, radiation-induced genomic instability correlates with the risk of breast cancer development. In addition, homozygous mutations in tumor suppressor genes associated with breast cancer development adversely affects the processing and repair of radiation-induced DNA damage. We performed a case-control study to determine whether an assay measuring radiation-induced chromatid breaks correlated with the risk of having bilateral breast cancer. METHODS AND MATERIALS: Patients were prospectively studied on an institutional review board-approved protocol. We included only women with bilateral breast cancer as cases to obtain patients with a presumed genetic susceptibility for breast cancer. Controls were healthy women without a previous cancer history. A mutagen sensitivity assay using gamma-radiation was performed on lymphocytes obtained from 26 cases and 18 controls. One milliliter of whole blood was cultured with 9 mL of blood medium for 91 h and then treated with 125 cGy using a Cs-137 irradiator. Following an additional 4 h in culture, cells were treated with Colcemid for 1 h to arrest cells in metaphase. The number of chromatid breaks per cell was counted using a minimum of 50 metaphase spreads for each sample. RESULTS: Cases had a statistically higher number of gamma-radiation-induced chromatid breaks per cell than controls, with mean values of 0.61 +/- 0.24 vs. 0.45 +/- 0.14, respectively (p = 0.034, Wilcoxon rank sum test). Using the 75th percentile value in the control group as a definition of radiation sensitivity, the radiation-sensitive individuals had a 2.83-fold increased odds ratio for breast cancer development compared with individuals who were not radiation sensitive (95% confidence intervals of 0.83 and 9.67). CONCLUSIONS: These preliminary data suggest that sensitivity to radiation-induced chromatid breaks in lymphocytes correlates with the risk of bilateral breast cancer. Although the differences between cases and controls were statistically significant, the small sample size necessitates that this finding be validated in a larger study. More data are also needed to determine whether this sensitivity is limited to breast cancer patients with a genetic susceptibility for the disease or also applies to the general breast cancer population. 409|To our knowledge, 58 cases of trisomy 14 in association with hematological malignancies have been reported, predominantly in myeloid malignancies. We report two patients with trisomy 14 associated with myelodysplasia. The bone marrow showed trilineage dysplasia, monocytosis and only mild thrombocytopenia. A nonmosaic karyotype was seen in both patients and survival from diagnosis was short (<1 year). The features are consistent with data from other published cases and support the hypothesis that trisomy 14 is a non-random karyotypic abnormality, with defined clinical associations and a poor prognosis. 410|OBJECTIVE: To analyze the chromosomal status of human embryos obtained from frozen-thawed oocytes. DESIGN: Fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of embryos obtained after oocyte cryopreservation. SETTING: Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Perugia, Italy, and the Instituto Valenciano de Infertilidad, Spain. PATIENT(S): Oocyte donors (n = 43). Fertilization, development, and chromosomal status of the embryos were compared with a control group (n = 18) of patients undergoing preimplantation genetic diagnosis for sex chromosome-linked diseases. INTERVENTION(S): Collection of oocytes after conventional ovarian stimulation and cryopreservation using propanediol as the cryoprotectant and a slow freezing procedure. Microinjection of surviving metaphase II oocytes and evaluation of fertilization and embryo development up to blastocyst stage. Chromosomal analysis after embryo biopsy. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): Survival, fertilization, and blastocyst rates. Embryo chromosomal analysis employing specific probes for chromosomes 13,18,21, X and Y. RESULT(S): The overall survival rate was 59.4%. There was no difference between cryopreservation and control groups in fertilization rates (76.5% vs. 90.5%) or blastocyst development (29.6% vs. 35%). The percentage of blastocysts from the original number of cryopreserved oocytes was only 5.6%, comparable to the 5.9% obtained in the control group. The percentage of embryos with abnormal number of chromosomes in the cryopreservation group (28.6%) was comparable to the 26% observed in the controls. CONCLUSION(S): Fertilization and cleavage rates after oocyte freezing are acceptable. Survival is, however, still poor, leading to overall results that make the technique clinically inefficient. There is no increase in the rate of chromosomal abnormalities, indicating that the technique is, nevertheless, safe enough to be further explored and improved. 411|Ataxia with oculomotor apraxia (AOA) is characterized by early-onset cerebellar ataxia, ocular apraxia, early areflexia, late peripheral neuropathy, slow progression, severe motor handicap, and absence of both telangiectasias and immunodeficiency. We studied 13 Portuguese families with AOA and found that the two largest families show linkage to 9p, with LOD scores of 4.13 and 3.82, respectively, at a recombination fraction of 0. These and three smaller families, all from northern Portugal, showed homozygosity and haplotype sharing over a 2-cM region on 9p13, demonstrating the existence of both a founding event and linkage to this locus, AOA1, in the five families. Three other families were excluded from this locus, demonstrating nonallelic heterogeneity in AOA. Early-onset cerebellar ataxia with hypoalbuminemia (EOCA-HA), so far described only in Japan, is characterized by marked cerebellar atrophy, peripheral neuropathy, mental retardation, and, occasionally, oculomotor apraxia. Two unrelated Japanese families with EOCA-HA were analyzed and appeared to show linkage to the AOA1 locus. Subsequently, hypoalbuminemia was found in all five Portuguese patients with AOA1 with a long disease duration, suggesting that AOA1 and EOCA-HA correspond to the same entity that accounts for a significant proportion of all recessive ataxias. The narrow localization of AOA1 should prompt the identification of the defective gene. 412|Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) is a mitogen found in CUG-initiated 21-25 kDa ("hi") or AUG-initiated 16-18 kDa ("lo") forms. Previously we demonstrated that "hi"-but not "lo"-FGF-2 caused a distinct nuclear phenotype characterized by apparently condensed chromatin present as separate clumps in the nucleus of cardiac myocytes. In this manuscript we investigated whether these effects were related to apoptosis or mitosis and whether they reflected a direct effect of "hi" FGF-2 on chromatin. Myocytes overexpressing "hi" FGF-2 and presenting the clumped chromatin phenotype: (i) were not labeled above background with antibodies to phosphorylated histones H1 and H3 used as indicators of mitotic chromatin condensation; (ii) did not stain positive for TUNEL; (iii) their nuclear lamina, visualized by anti-laminB immunofluorescence, appeared intact; (iv) neither caspase inhibitors, nor Bcl-2 or "lo" FGF-2 overexpression prevented the manifestation of the compacted nuclear phenotype. Purified recombinant "hi" FGF-2 was more potent than "lo" FGF-2 in promoting the condensation/aggregation of chick erythrocyte chromatin partially reconstituted with histone H1 in vitro. We conclude that the DNA phenotype induced by "hi" FGF-2 in cardiac myocytes likely reflects a direct effect on chromatin structure that does not require the engagement of mitosis or apoptosis. By affecting chromatin compaction "hi" FGF-2 may contribute to the regulation of gene expression. 413|We report the clinical and genetic linkage analysis of a large Tunisian family with thirteen affected patients suffering from Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease with pyramidal involvement. The inheritance is autosomal recessive. The clinical phenotype is consistent in all patients. It is characterized by onset during the first decade, a progressive course and distal atrophy in all four limbs, associated with a mild pyramidal syndrome. Nerve biopsy in two patients showed severe axonal neuropathy. Genetic linkage excluded known loci of different genetic forms of Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, familial spastic paraplegia and familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. A significant lod score was obtained with marker D8S286, confirming linkage to chromosome 8q21.3. The clinical syndrome observed in this family seems to correspond to a new genetic form of autosomal recessive Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. 414|Walleye dermal sarcoma virus (WDSV) induces tumors and allows or possibly directs tumor regression. WDSV encodes a putative cyclin homologue, Orf A, and six variant Orf A transcripts have been identified. Northern analysis indicated that a 3.3-kb transcript, encoding full-length Orf A, is the predominant transcript in developing, but not regressing, tumors. Three Orf A proteins, one full-length and two amino-truncated forms, were expressed in mammalian and piscine cells, and their intracellular locations were determined. The full-length form was nuclear and concentrated in interchromatin granule clusters, defined by colocalization with SC-35. The amino-truncated forms were cytoplasmic. Fusion of amino-terminal portions of Orf A to a heterologous protein demonstrated that residues 1-112 were necessary for nuclear localization. Mutation of aa K80 and/or E110 disrupted nuclear localization, suggesting a mechanism similar to that of cellular A- and D-type cyclins for its nuclear import. 415|A brief description is given of two patients with gyral abnormalities associated with neurogenic limb abnormalities. 416|In human fibroblasts, N:-phosphoacetyl-L-aspartate (PALA) and gamma-radiation induce reversible and irreversible p53-mediated G(1) cell cycle arrest, respectively. By coupling the premature chromosome condensation technique to fluorescence in situ hybridization, we found no evidence of DNA damage after PALA treatment. We used representational difference analysis (cDNA-RDA) to study changes in gene expression after PALA treatment and gamma-radiation in normal human fibroblasts. The mammary-derived growth inhibitor (MDGI) gene was expressed in PALA-treated cells. Ectopic MDGI expression arrested PALA-treated but not irradiated RKO cells. Expression of an antisense RNA against MDGI resulted in partial G(1) escape of PALA-treated human fibroblasts. The tumor necrosis factor stimulated gene 6, TSG-6, seems to be under the control of p53 and is only and specifically induced upon PALA treatment. In irradiated cells we have identified 'novel' genes that are differentially expressed, along with known genes not previously linked to cell cycle control. Some of these 'novel' genes correspond to clones in the expressed sequence tag (EST) database; one of them shows identity with ESTs mapping to a region on chromosome 7, where gene(s) involved in replicative senescence and frequently deleted in tumors are located. Thus, PALA treatment and gamma-irradiation elicit a pattern of differential gene expression that could contribute to a quiescence or senescence-like phenotype. 417|PURPOSE: Using published FISH data for chromosome aberration production in human fibroblasts by hard X-rays to test a breakage-and-reunion model. METHODS: The model assumed pairwise misrejoining, random apart from proximity effects, of DNA double-strand break (DSB) free ends. CAS (chromosome aberration simulator) Monte Carlo computer software implementing the model was modified to use a distance algorithm for misrejoining instead of using DSB interaction sites. The modification (called CAS2) allowed a somewhat more realistic approach to large-scale chromatin geometry, chromosome territories and proximity effects. It required adding a third adjustable parameter, the chromosome territory intersection factor, quantifying the amount of intertwining among different chromosomes. RESULTS: CAS2 gave somewhat better results than CAS. A reasonable fit with a few discrepancies was obtained for the frequencies at three different radiation doses of many different aberration types and of aberrations involving various specific chromosomes in a large data set using one-paint FISH scoring. The optimal average chromosome territory intersection factor was approximately 1.1, indicating that, for an arbitrarily chosen location in the nucleus, on average slightly more than two chromosomes have very nearby loci. Without changing the three parameter values, a fit was also obtained for a corresponding, smaller, two-paint data set. CONCLUSIONS: A random breakage-and-reunion model incorporating proximity effects by using a distance algorithm gave acceptable approximations for many details of hard X-ray aberration patterns. However, enough discrepancies were found that the possibility of an additional or alternate formation mechanism remains. 418|In the past decade, maternally inherited disorders have been described manifesting as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. These are primarily associated with defects in oxidative metabolism due to an alteration in mitochondrial DNA. Although the biochemistry and molecular biology is well-defined, there is little information regarding clinical presentation and course. Reported manifestations can be broad and can include myopathy, encephalopathy, stroke-like episodes, hearing loss, cardiomyopathy, multiorgan dysfunction and sudden death. Predominant or exclusive involvement of the heart is rare. We report the clinical presentations, investigations, pathologic findings, and clinical course in two families with two mitochondrial tRNA defects with exclusive cardiac involvement and demonstrable clinical heterogeneity based on the percentage of mutant tRNA. 419|The flowering plant Arabidopsis thaliana is an important model system for identifying genes and determining their functions. Here we report the analysis of the genomic sequence of Arabidopsis. The sequenced regions cover 115.4 megabases of the 125-megabase genome and extend into centromeric regions. The evolution of Arabidopsis involved a whole-genome duplication, followed by subsequent gene loss and extensive local gene duplications, giving rise to a dynamic genome enriched by lateral gene transfer from a cyanobacterial-like ancestor of the plastid. The genome contains 25,498 genes encoding proteins from 11,000 families, similar to the functional diversity of Drosophila and Caenorhabditis elegans--the other sequenced multicellular eukaryotes. Arabidopsis has many families of new proteins but also lacks several common protein families, indicating that the sets of common proteins have undergone differential expansion and contraction in the three multicellular eukaryotes. This is the first complete genome sequence of a plant and provides the foundations for more comprehensive comparison of conserved processes in all eukaryotes, identifying a wide range of plant-specific gene functions and establishing rapid systematic ways to identify genes for crop improvement. 420|Gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) is the most common mesenchymal tumor of the gastrointestinal tract. Since c-kit mutation occurs only in one-third of GIST, there might be other molecular mechanisms. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH), microsatellite instability (MSI) and NF2 gene mutation were investigated in 22 GISTs (9 low-risk and 13 high-risk tumors). LOH and MSI were evaluated using 41 markers on 21 chromosomal arms, and NF2 gene mutation was examined by PCR-SSCP. High frequency of LOH was observed on 14q (9 / 19, 47%), and 22q (17 / 22, 77%). The frequencies were similar in low-risk and high-risk tumors, and were unrelated with gastric or intestinal origin. Two other abnormalities, additional LOH on other chromosomes and MSI at more than two loci, were characteristic of the high-risk tumors (P < 0.05). NF2 gene mutation was identified in two cases showing 22q-LOH (8 bp deletion on the splice donor site of exon 7, and 1 bp insertion at position 432 of exon 4, which resulted in nonsense mutation). There was no significant correlation between these results and c-kit gene mutation, which was observed in 8 of 22 tumors. Suppressor genes on 14q and 22q may be involved, independently of c-kit gene mutation, in the development of GIST. NF2 contributes as a tumor suppressor in a small subset of GIST. These abnormalities are presumably followed by increased genetic instability. 421|OBJECTIVES: The syndrome of X-linked sideroblastic anaemia with ataxia is rare, described only twice in the literature. The aim was to obtain clinical neurological and haematological data about this rare syndrome throughout adult life. METHODS: A family is described with two affected brothers and two affected maternal uncles. The family was evaluated clinically. Haematological investigations included full blood count, blood film, iron studies, free erythrocyte protoporphyrin (FEP) concentrations and a bone marrow examination where possible. RESULTS: Core neurological features included motor delay, ataxia evident from early childhood, and dysarthria. Neurological features were non-progressive until the fifth decade when slow progression became evident. Some family members showed mild spasticity. Patients usually have a mild asymptomatic anaemia or a borderline decreased mean corpuscular volume. Blood film examination showed Pappenheimer bodies. Bone marrow examination showed ring sideroblasts, indicating raised erythrocyte iron. Free erythrocyte protoporphyrin (FEP) concentrations were raised. CONCLUSIONS: Haematological features are subtle and can be easily overlooked, and individual patients may not display all the abnormal features. X-linked ataxias are rare and incorrect genetic advice may be given if the diagnostic haematological features of X-linked sideroblastic anaemia are overlooked. Males with early onset ataxia should have a haematological evaluation including a blood film, with a bone marrow examination if abnormal blood count indices and measurement of FEP concentrations raise suspicion. The condition has parallels with Pearson's syndrome and Friedreich's ataxia. All three conditions are associated with mitochondrial iron handling defects and ataxia. The human ATP binding cassette gene (hABC7) is a candidate gene and requires further investigation. 422|Defects in a triad of organelles (melanosomes, platelet granules, and lysosomes) result in albinism, prolonged bleeding, and lysosome abnormalities in Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome (HPS). Defects in HPS1, a protein of unknown function, and in components of the AP-3 complex cause some, but not all, cases of HPS in humans. There have been 15 inherited models of HPS described in the mouse, underscoring its marked genetic heterogeneity. Here we characterize a new spontaneous mutation in the mouse, cappuccino (cno), that maps to mouse chromosome 5 in a region conserved with human 4p15-p16. Melanosomes of cno/cno mice are immature and dramatically decreased in number in the eye and skin, resulting in severe oculocutaneous albinism. Platelet dense body contents (adenosine triphosphate, serotonin) are markedly deficient, leading to defective aggregation and prolonged bleeding. Lysosomal enzyme concentrations are significantly elevated in the kidney and liver. Genetic, immunofluorescence microscopy, and lysosomal protein trafficking studies indicate that the AP-3 complex is intact in cno/cno mice. It was concluded that the cappuccino gene encodes a product involved in an AP-3-independent mechanism critical to the biogenesis of lysosome-related organelles. (Blood. 2000;96:4227-4235) 423|The fact that proteins such as Ras, Rac and RhoA require farnesylation or geranylgeranylation to induce malignant transformation prompted many investigators to develop farnesyltransferase (FTase) and geranylgeranyltransferase I (GGTase I) inhibitors (FTIs and GGTIs, respectively) as novel anticancer drugs. Although FTIs have been shown to antagonise oncogenic signalling, reverse malignant transformation, inhibit human tumour growth in nude mice and induce tumour regression in transgenic mice without any signs of toxicity, their mechanism of action is not known. This review will focus on important mechanistic issues as well as bench to bedside translational issues. These will include the relevance to cancer therapy of the alternative geranylgeranylation of K-Ras when FTase is inhibited; a thorough discussion about evidence for and against the involvement of inhibition of prenylation of Ras and RhoB in the mechanism of FTIs' antitumour activity as well as effects of FTIs and GGTIs on the cell cycle machinery and the dynamics of bipolar spindle formation and chromosome alignment during mitosis. Bench to bedside issues relating to the design of hypothesis-driven clinical trials with biochemical correlates for proof-of-concept in man will also be discussed. This will include Phase I issues such as determining maximally tolerated dose (MTD) versus effective biological dose (EBD), as well as whether Phase II trials are still needed for clinical evaluations of anti-signalling agents. Other questions that will be addressed include: what levels of inhibition of FTase activity are required for tumour response in Phase II clinical evaluations? What FTase substrates are most relevant as biochemical correlates? Are signalling pathways such as H-Ras/PI3K/Akt and K-Ras/Raf/MEK/Erk significant biological readouts? Does Ras mutation status predict response? What are appropriate clinical end-points for FTI Phase II trials? For this latter important question, time to tumour progression, median survival, percentage of patients that progress, clinical benefits and improvement in quality of life will all be discussed. 424|Neurofibromatosis 2 (NF2) is an autosomal dominant disorder characterized by schwannomas and meningiomas that develop after inactivation of both copies of the NF2 gene. Approximately half of all patients with NF2 have unaffected parents and the disease results from new mutations at the NF2 locus. Loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in tumor specimens due to deletions covering the normal NF2 allele can be used to infer the haplotypes surrounding underlying mutations and determine the allelic origin of new mutations. We studied 71 sporadic NF2 patients using both LOH and pedigree analysis and compared the parental origin of the new mutation with the underlying molecular change. In the 45 informative individuals, 31 mutations (69%) were of paternal and 14 (31%) were of maternal origin (P=0.016). Comparison with corresponding constitutional mutations revealed no correlation between parental origin and the type or location of the mutations. However, in 4 of 6 patients with somatic mosaicism the NF2 mutation was of maternal origin. A slight parent of origin effect on severity of disease was found. Further clinical and molecular studies are needed to determine the basis of these unexpected observations. 425|Loss of DNA mismatch repair because of hypermethylation of the hMLH1 gene promoter occurs at a high frequency in a number of human tumors. A role for loss of mismatch repair (MMR) in resistance to a number of clinically important anticancer drugs has been shown. We have investigated whether the demethylating agent 2'-deoxy-5-azacytidine (DAC) can be used in vivo to sensitize MMR-deficient, drug-resistant ovarian (A2780/cp70) and colon (SW48) tumor xenografts that are MLH1 negative because of gene promoter hypermethylation. Treatment of tumor-bearing mice with the demethylating agent DAC at a nontoxic dose induces MLH1 expression. Re-expression of MLH1 is associated with a decrease in hMLH1 gene promoter methylation. DAC treatment alone has no effect on the growth rate of the tumors. However, DAC treatment sensitizes the xenografts to cisplatin, carboplatin, temozolomide, and epirubicin. Sensitization is comparable with that obtained by reintroduction of the hMLH1 gene by chromosome 3 transfer. Consistent with loss of MMR having no effect on sensitivity in vitro to Taxol, DAC treatment has no effect on the Taxol sensitivity of the xenografts. DAC treatment does not sensitize xenografts of HCT116, which lacks MMR because of hMLH1 mutation. Because there is emerging data on the role of loss of MMR in clinical drug resistance, DAC could have a role in increasing the efficacy of chemotherapy for patients whose tumors lack MLH1 expression because of hMLH1 promoter methylation. 426|A newborn was found to have an isochromosome for the short arm of chromosome 9, i(9p) and a jumping translocation of the whole long arm. In 94.4% metaphases, 9q was fused to the telomere of chromosome 19p and, in 5.6% of metaphases, 9q was fused to the telomere of chromosome 8p. The net result was trisomy for the short arm of chromosome 9. With the pan telomere probe, fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) investigations found an interstitial telomere on the der(19) and der(8). The 9 beta and classical satellite probes gave a signal only on the long arm of chromosome 9 involved in the jumping translocation. The 9 alpha satellite probe hybridized to i(9p) and not to the other derivative chromosomes. A combination of chromosome 9 (red) and chromosome 19 (green) paint probes used to rapidly screen metaphases for the jumping translocation found 88 metaphases had a der(19)t(9;19) and 4metaphases had a der(8)t(8;9). For the first time, the junction of a jumping translocation has been shown to involve the telomere sequence (TTAGGG)n and beta-satellite sequences by FISH. In this paper, we also review the simultaneous occurrence of an isochromosome for the short arm and translocation of the whole long arm and constitutional jumping translocations. 427|This article is based on the study of 52 cases of Turner's syndrome, born between 1980 and 1996 and recorded in the Registry of Congenital Anomalies in the Canton of Vaud. In most cases the cytogenetic analysis was based on maternal multiple-marker screening, sonography findings or maternal age. The most common chromosome abnormality is complete monosomy X. The rare cases of mosaic and the one case of isochromosome mainly involve livebirths. Morphological analysis of foetuses revealed hygroma colli (84%) and hydrops (63%), frequently associated with major cardiac malformations. The livebirths present growth retardation, pterygium colli and facial dysmorphic features, but rarely complex malformations. In the light of our data, the probability of survival to birth is 0.8% and the prevalence in all clinical pregnancies is 1.1%. 428|We describe a family with direct transmission of a duplication of 8p12-->8p21.1. The phenotype of affected relatives included mild mental retardation but no minor anomalies. The duplication was identified by means of GTG-banding and fluorescence in situ hybridization with a probe specific for 8p12 generated by microdissection and degenerate oligonucleotide primed-polymerase chain reaction. Assay of glutathione reductase, which has been localised to 8p21.1, was significantly increased when compared with controls with normal chromosomal constitution. To the best of our knowledge, a proximal direct duplication of 8p restricted to subbands p12-->p21.1 has not been reported so far. The reported aberration is compared with other partial duplications of 8p, in particular to inversion duplications 8p and to small direct distal duplications involving 8p23.1. Am. J. Med. Genet. 94:306-310, 2000. 429|Prediction of evolution of secondary hyperplasia and tumours of the parathyroid glands is still a problem in histopathology. To assess whether the quantity of silver-stained nucleolar organiser region (AgNOR) proteins might be used as a prognostic tool in parathyroid pathology, a standardised AgNOR analysis has been performed on 19 cases of parathyroid hyperplasia caused by secondary hyperparathyroidism (PH), 8 cases of adenoma (PA) and 10 cases of carcinoma (PC). Clinico-pathological data and follow-up information were available. On formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded sections, the visualisation and quantification of AgNORs were achieved according to the 1995 guidelines of the Committee on AgNOR Quantification. Then, the mean area (square micrometres) of AgNORs per nucleus (NORA) was evaluated by means of an image analyser and specific softwares. After testing the normal distribution of NORA values, statistical parametric tests were utilised; Kaplan-Meier and Cox multivariate analyses were also performed. In parathyroid lesions, a progressive increase of mean NORA values was observed from PH (2.895 microm2; SE 0.171) through PA (3.638 microm2; SE 0.125) to PC (4.701 microm2; SE 0.179); these differences were highly significant (P<0.001), although some degree of overlap was found among single NORA values. A significantly higher mean NORA value was revealed in PC with distant metastases than was noted in cases with no current clinical evidence of disease progression. Furthermore, a significantly (P<0.001) higher mean NORA value was encountered in the group of PH with recurrences (3.600 microm2; SE 0.106) than in nonrecurrent PH (2.261 microm2; SE 0.087). Multivariate analyses indicated that the NORA value was an independent prognostic parameter determining the risk of recurrence in PH. We suggest that AgNOR quantity may be a promising additional tool for predicting the biological behaviour of parathyroid lesions. 430|During phagocytosis, gp91(phox), the catalytic subunit of the phagocyte NADPH oxidase, becomes activated to produce superoxide, a precursor of microbicidal oxidants. Currently increasing evidence suggests that nonphagocytic cells contain similar superoxide-producing oxidases, which are proposed to play crucial roles in various events such as cell proliferation and oxygen sensing for erythropoiesis. Here we describe the cloning of human cDNA that encodes a novel NAD(P)H oxidase, designated NOX4. The NOX4 protein of 578 amino acids exhibits 39% identity to gp91(phox) with special conservation in membrane-spanning regions and binding sites for heme, FAD, and NAD(P)H, indicative of its function as a superoxide-producing NAD(P)H oxidase. The membrane fraction of kidney-derived human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells, expressing NOX4, exhibits NADH- and NADPH-dependent superoxide-producing activities, both of which are inhibited by diphenylene iodonium, an agent known to block oxygen sensing, and decreased in cells expressing antisense NOX4 mRNA. The human NOX4 gene, comprising 18 exons, is located on chromosome 11q14.2-q21, and its expression is almost exclusively restricted to adult and fetal kidneys. In human renal cortex, high amounts of the NOX4 protein are present in distal tubular cells, which reside near erythropoietin-producing cells. In addition, overexpression of NOX4 in cultured cells leads to increased superoxide production and decreased rate of growth. The present findings thus suggest that the novel NAD(P)H oxidase NOX4 may serve as an oxygen sensor and/or a regulator of cell growth in kidney. 431|Muscle pathology in McLeod syndrome is usually mild; patchy necrotic or regenerating fibres, occasional internal nuclei, and the absence of an inflammatory cell infiltrate are the usual findings. We report on a 29 year old man presenting with chronic fatiguability and excessive sweating in whom an open quadriceps muscle biopsy demonstrated grouped necrotic fibres accompanied by striking patchy mononuclear cell infiltrates. The diagnosis of McLeod syndrome was made on the basis of red blood cell acanthocytosis, raised serum creatine kinase, and weak expression of Kell blood group antigens. The quadriceps muscle infiltrate consisted principally of histologically typical macrophages. These cells had prominent nucleoli, displayed numerous mitoses, and were strongly CD68+. A small population of typical CD3+, CD43+ lymphocytes was also present. In addition, a small population of large atypical CD3+ cells was noted. Immunoperoxidase stains for CD20, CD30, CD79a, and CD56 were negative. Immunocytochemical studies for the common muscular dystrophies were normal. The muscle biopsy findings highlight a potential for confusion of this condition with idiopathic polymyositis. The expanding range of muscle pathology reported in McLeod syndrome, to which this case adds, may reflect variable involvement of the XK gene on chromosome Xp21, or of the adjacent loci of Duchenne muscular dystrophy and chronic granulomatous disease. 432|Neuromuscular ataxia, nma, is a new autosomal recessive mutation that arose spontaneously in CBA/J inbred mice at The Jackson Laboratory. The mutation, now maintained on the B6C3FeF(1) hybrid background, when homozygous, causes small size, uncoordinated gait, dysmetria, dystonia, general weakness, and death shortly after weaning. No biochemical or morphological abnormalities have been detected. We used an intercross between the B6C3FeF(1) mutant and CAST/Ei to map the nma mutation to the proximal end of Chr 12. The most likely gene order places the mutation between D12Mit270 and D12Mit54, non-recombinant with D12Mit2 in 96 tested meioses. 433|BACKGROUND: To identify nuclei and lesions with great specificity, a large set of karyometric features is arranged in the form of a linear profile, called a nuclear signature. The karyometric feature values are normalized as z-values. Their ordering along the profile axis is arbitrary but consistent. The profile of the nuclear signature is distinctive; it can be characterized by a new set of variables called contour features. A number of data reduction methods are introduced and their performance is compared with that of the karyometric features in the classification of prostatic, colonic, and esophageal lesions. METHODS: Contour characteristics were reduced to descriptive statistics of the set of z-values in the nuclear signature and to sequence information. The contour features derived were (1) relative frequencies of occurrence of z-values and of their differences and (2) co-occurrence statistics, run lengths of z-values, and statistics of higher-order dependencies. Performance was evaluated by comparing classification scores of diagnostic groups. RESULTS: Rates for correct classification by karyometric features alone and contour features alone indicate equivalent performance. Classification by a combined set of features led to an increase in correct classification. CONCLUSIONS: Image analysis and subsequent data reduction of nuclear signatures of contour features is a novel method, providing quantitative information that may lead to an effective identification of nuclei and lesions. 434|We postulated that a deficiency of flavin monooxygenase (FMO)-a ferrireductase component of cells-could produce sideroblastic anemia. FMO is an intracellular ferrireductase which may be responsible for the obligatory reduction of ferric to ferrous iron so that reduced iron can be incorporated into heme by ferrochelatase. Abnormalities of this mechanism could result in accumulation of excess ferric iron in mitochondria of erythroid cells to produce ringed sideroblasts and impair hemoglobin synthesis. To investigate this hypothesis we obtained blood from patients with sideroblastic anemia and normal subjects. Extracts of peripheral blood lymphocytes were used to measure ferrireduction by utilization of NADPH. Lymphoid precursors are reported to accumulate iron in mitochondria similarly to erythroid precursors. Utilization of lymphoid precursors avoided the need for bone marrow aspirations. We studied three patients with sideroblastic anemia. One patient and his asymptomatic daughter had a significant decrease in ferrireductase activity. They also had markedly diminished concentrations of FMO in lymphocyte protein extracts on Western blots. This was accompanied by increased concentration of mobilferrin in the extracts. These results suggest that abnormalities of FMO and mobilferrin may cause sideroblastic anemia and erythropoietic hemochromatosis in some patients. 435|Primary aldosteronism (PAL) has been traditionally regarded as a rare cause of hypertension and not worth looking for in the absence of hypokalemia. However, the availability of the aldosterone/renin ratio as a screening test and its application to a wider population of hypertensives has resulted in a marked increase in detection rate, suggesting that PAL is common, with most patients being normokalemic. The spectrum of PAL has been expanded further by the study of familial varieties, in which family screening efforts have permitted the recognition of earlier, sometimes even pre-clinical, stages of disease. Familial hyperaldosteronism type I(FH-I) In FH-I, inheritance of a 'hybrid' 11beta-hydroxylase/aldosterone synthase gene causes adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH)-regulated aldosterone and 'hybrid steroid' (18hydroxy-cortisol and 18-oxo-cortisol) overproduction. Genetic testing, by Southern blot or polymerase chain reaction-based techniques, has greatly facilitated detection, being more convenient and more reliable than dexamethasone suppression testing, and has led to a fuller appreciation of the marked phenotypic variability in this disorder. The demonstration of excessive, abnormally regulated aldosterone production in normotensive subjects with FH-I suggests that absence of hypertension in such individuals cannot merely be attributed to lack of expression of the hybrid gene. Determinants of hypertension severity may include patient gender, gender of affected parent, degree of hybrid gene expression, and interactions with other genetic and environmental factors. Detailed biochemical studies, including analyses of aldosterone/PRA/cortisol 'day-curve' levels, have led to a fuller understanding of aldosterone regulation both before and in response to glucocorticoid treatment in this condition, and prompted a re-examination of current approaches to treatment Unless ACTH is completely suppressed by glucocorticoid treatment, the hybrid gene dominates over the wild-type aldosterone synthase genes in terms of aldosterone production, both in untreated and treated FH-I. This may in part be due to an abnormality affecting the functional expression of the 'wild-type' genes. Demonstration of persisting hybrid gene expression in patients rendered normotensive by very low doses of glucocorticoids suggests that currently recommended doses, aimed at normalizing aldosterone regulation (rather than blood pressure), may be too high, and may therefore place patients at unnecessary risk of developing Cushingoid side effects. Familial hyperaldosteronism type II (FH-II) Like FH-I, FH-II is associated with hyperaldosteronism and probable autosomal dominant inheritance. Unlike FH-I, hyperaldosteronism in FH-II is not dexamethasone suppressible, and is not associated with the hybrid gene mutation. Detection of adrenal mass lesions, which are frequently (17 of 57 patients in the Greenslopes Hospital series) responsible for PAL in FH-II, does not help to differentiate FH-II from FH-I, since mass lesions may also be common in that condition (detected in seven of 21 patients). Biochemically and morphologically, FH-II is indistinguishable from apparently non-familial PAL, and demonstrates similar variability even among individuals of the same family. In one informative family available for linkage analysis, FH-II does not segregate with either the AT1 gene or the CYP11B2 gene, or any other genetic defect in the chromosome 8q21-8qtel region. A genome-wide search is in progress. As has already occurred in FH-I, the elucidation of underlying genetic mutations in FH-II is likely to facilitate early detection, thereby helping to broaden its spectrum and to permit close follow-up and appropriately timed institution of specific therapy, and wider detection among patients with hypertension of potentially curable or specifically treatable forms. 436|Locus control regions (LCRs) alleviate chromatin-mediated transcriptional repression. Incomplete LCRs partially lose this property when integrated in transcriptionally restrictive genomic regions such as centromeres. This frequently results in position effect variegation (PEV), i.e. the suppression of expression in a proportion of the cells. Here we show that this PEV is influenced by the heterochromatic protein SUV39H1 and by the Polycomb group proteins M33 and BMI-1. A concentration variation of these proteins modulates the proportion of cells expressing human globins in a locus-dependent manner. Similarly, the transcription factors Sp1 or erythroid Krüppel-like factor (EKLF) also influence PEV, characterized by a change in the number of expressing cells and the chromatin structure of the locus. However, in contrast to results obtained in a euchromatic locus, EKLF influences the expression of the gamma- more than the beta-globin genes, suggesting that the relief of silencing is caused by the binding of EKLF to the LCR and that genes at an LCR proximal position are more likely to be in an open chromatin state than genes at a distal position. 437|The use of the real-time reverse-transcription polymerase-chain reaction (RT-PCR) method to quantify BCR-ABL transcripts before and after allogeneic transplant was prospectively studied in 65 patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). The expression of the BCR-ABL transcript was determined and normalized using the glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) housekeeping gene product as an endogenous reference. In the single step real-time PCR assay, tenfold serial dilutions of cDNA of the K5652 cell line remained positive down to 100 pg cDNA only. However, molecular relapses of CML after transplant were only safely detectable when a nested real-time PCR assay was performed, which was able to detect 1-10 pg cDNA from a tenfold serial dilution. The median normalized BCR-ABL transcript level was measured as 0.004% in 17 patients with a molecular relapse, 0.4% in 7 patients with a cytogenetic relapse, 2.6% in 36 patients with a stable phase of CML, and 36% in 5 patients with a relapse in a blast crisis. The analyzed median normalized amount of BCR-ABL transcript differed significantly (P<0.001) between the various disease stages. In ten CML patients with relapse, the real-time PCR method was used to monitor the response of various immunotherapies as donor leukocyte infusions, withdrawal of immunosuppression, or interferon-alpha application. The results of the quantitative evaluation of BCR-ABL transcripts reflected very well the clinical effect of the different applied immunotherapies. The new real-time PCR method seems to be a suitable technique for the early detection of relapse after allogeneic transplant in patients with the BCR-ABL transcript. Its ability to distinguish between molecular and cytogenetic relapse (P<0.001) allows early therapeutic decisions. 438|Since the discovery of the first mutations that cause hereditary ataxias in the early 1990s, there has been continuous progress in deciphering the molecular pathogenesis of degenerative ataxias. Recent research in Friedreich's ataxia, the most frequent recessive ataxia, has provided further evidence that the clinical phenotype of this disorder is caused by abnormal oxidative phosphorylation due to mitochondrial dysfunction. The dominantly inherited spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs) are genetically heterogeneous. Up to now, 11 distinct loci have been identified. The mutations that cause SCA1, SCA2, SCA3, SCA6 and SCA7 share the common feature of an expanded CAG sequence, encoding an abnormally long polyglutamine tract within the respective gene products. Recent pathogenetic research points to the importance of abnormal protein-protein interaction and altered gene transcription. The aetiology of many sporadic ataxias remains obscure. In some patients, association of ataxia with specific serum antibodies (antigliadin, antiglutamic acid decarboxylase) suggests an immune pathogenesis. 439|In the present study, we analyzed both telomere length and telomerase activity in surgical and autopsy samples of non-neoplastic mucosa and carcinomas of the stomach. Telomere length, determined by Southern blot analysis, demonstrated progressive shortening with age in non-neoplastic gastric mucosal specimens from 38 human subjects aged between 0 and 99 years, with an average annual loss rate of 46 base pairs (bp). The mean (+/- SD) telomere length in 21 gastric carcinomas was 7.0 +/- 1.6 x 10(3) base pairs (1.6 kbp). In 20 (95%) of the 21 subjects, the values were smaller than those in the nonneoplastic gastric mucosa (mean shortening 1.8 kbp), although a strong correlation was observed for the paired data (r = 0.69, P = 0.0004). Similarly, telomere lengths in carcinomas were shorter than those for intestinal metaplasia (a mean difference of 1.1 kbp). Telomerase activity, estimated using the telomeric repeat amplification protocol assay, was positive in 18 (86%) of the 21 gastric carcinomas, without significant differences among the three histological types (well, moderately, and poorly differentiated adenocarcinomas) or with sex or age. The results suggest that telomere length and possibly shortening rates vary with the individual, and that examination of both non-neoplastic mucosa and tumors is necessary to improve our understanding of the significance of telomerase in neoplasia. 440|The signaling activity of Platelet-derived growth factors A and B (PDGF-A and PDGF-B) that is mediated through the two receptor kinases, PDGFR-alpha and PDGFR-beta has been shown to be critical for the development of the cardiovascular organs, the kidney, the lung and the central nervous system. During the cloning of genes for VEGF related proteins, we isolated a mouse cDNA that can encode for a protein of 345 amino acids. A comparison of the amino acid sequence reveals that this predicted gene product displays 95% identity to human PDGF-C. The mouse Pdgfc gene maps to a region of chromosome 17 that is syntenic to human chromosome 6p21.3 In E9. 5-E15.5 mouse embryo, Pdgfc is widely expressed in the surface ectoderm and later in the germinal layer of the skin, the olfactory and otic placode and their derivatives and the lining of the oral cavity. In the gut and visceral organs, such as the lung and the kidney, Pdgfc mRNA is first expressed in the endodermal epithelium and later in mesenchymal tissues associated with the endodermal structures. Similar to other PDGFs, Pdgfc is widely expressed in mesenchymal precursors and the myoblast of the smooth and skeletal muscles. Contrary to PDGF-A, Pdgfc is not expressed in the central nervous system, except in the cerebellum, and neurogenic derivatives of the neural crest cells. Pdgfc is also absent from the heart and the vascular endothelium 441|Numerical chromosomal abnormalities are a well known characteristic of human cancer, but no "chromosome-wide investigation" encompassing almost all of the chromosomes has ever been reported. Furthermore, although the multistep process of carcinogenesis is widely accepted in human cancer, the stepwise numerical aberration of chromosomes has never been addressed. Touch preparations of 24 (male 20, female 4) surgically resected gastric cancer tissue samples in various stages in terms of depth of invasion were analyzed by fluorescence in situ hybridization using centromere-specific probes including 17 chromosomes, 1-4, 6-8, 10-12, 15-18, 20, X, and Y. Microwave irradiation was performed to increase the sensitivity and specificity of the signal. The depth of the tumor invasion in the gastric wall and histological subtypes were recorded by viewing the histology of the adjacent portion. Numerical chromosomal abnormalities of chromosomes 1 and 2 were found most frequently and from the early stage of gastric cancer. The abnormalities observed were limited to chromosomes 1, 2, 4, and 20 in tumors invading to the middle layer of the submucosa of the gastric wall, but these became more extensive, involving almost all of the chromosomes investigated when the tumor had invaded beyond the proper muscle of the gastric wall. Centromeric numbers of chromosomes 3 and 18 were exceptionally stable even after the tumor progressed to advanced stage. These profiles of the sequential process of numerical chromosomal abnormality were similar in both mucocellular and tubular-type gastric cancer, but the prevalence was significantly lower in the mucocellular type (39.0% versus 68.0%). On the basis of fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of 17 different chromosome centromeres in gastric cancer in various stages, we conclude that the earliest events in gastric carcinogenesis in terms of chromosomal abnormality occur in chromosomes 1 and 2 and that chromosomal numerical aberrations expand in a stepwise manner with cancer progression. 442|Adenomatous polyps (AP) of the gastrointestinal tract in children are very rare. Because of their potential malignancy, they are of great clinical importance. There is little experience in the management of children with AP. The immunohistochemical expression of the Lewis blood group antigens (BGA) (sialosyl-Le(a), Le(a), Leb, Le(x), and Le(y)) and the number of activated nucleoli with the silver staining method for nucleolar organizer regions (AgNORs) were studied in two children with AP. In a girl with isolated AP of the stomach and colon, it was found that antigens Le(b) and s-Le(a) were expressed extensively in the gastric adenoma, and sialosyl-Le(a) throughout the entire length of the rectal adenoma crypts, but in the AgNORs stain the number of nucleoli ranged from two to four, evidencing changes of a benign character. In the case of familial adenomatous polyposis diagnosed in a 9-year-old boy, in some colonic adenomas the number of activated nucleoli was greater than five, and the Le(b) antigen was expressed in superficial epithelial cells in one of the adenomas. Also, extensive expression of antigens Le(y) and s-Le(a) throughout the entire length of the crypt in another polyp removed was observed. We believe that immunohistochemical study of the intensity and extent of the expression of Lewis BGA in the polyp tissue simultaneously with the determination of the number of activated nucleoli by the AgNORs staining method can be helpful in better analysis of cytological risk factors of a malignant transformation. 443|Vascular anomalies are congenital lesions that usually occur sporadically, but can be inherited. Previously, we have described that venous malformations, localized bluish-purple skin lesions, are caused by an activating mutation in the TIE2/TEK receptor. Moreover, we mapped another locus to chromosome 1p21-p22, for venous malformations with glomus cells (VM-GLOM). Here we report a physical map, based on 18 overlapping YAC clones, spanning this 5-Mb VMGLOM locus, from marker GATA63C06 to D1S2664. In addition, we report a sequence-ready PAC map of 46 clones covering 1.48 Mb within the YAC contig, a region to which we have restricted VMGLOM. We describe 21 new STSs and nine novel CA repeats, seven of which are polymorphic. These data will enable positional cloning of genes for diseases mapped to this locus, including the VMGLOM gene, likely a currently unknown regulator of vasculogenesis and/or angiogenesis. 444|A significant proportion of familial breast cancers cannot be explained by mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes. We applied a strategy to identify predisposition loci for breast cancer by using mathematical models to identify early somatic genetic deletions in tumor tissues followed by targeted linkage analysis. Comparative genomic hybridization was used to study 61 breast tumors from 37 breast cancer families with no identified BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations. Branching and phylogenetic tree models predicted that loss of 13q was one of the earliest genetic events in hereditary cancers. In a Swedish family with five breast cancer cases, all analyzed tumors showed distinct 13q deletions, with the minimal region of loss at 13q21-q22. Genotyping revealed segregation of a shared 13q21 germ-line haplotype in the family. Targeted linkage analysis was carried out in a set of 77 Finnish, Icelandic, and Swedish breast cancer families with no detected BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations. A maximum parametric two-point logarithm of odds score of 2.76 was obtained for a marker at 13q21 (D13S1308, theta = 0.10). The multipoint logarithm of odds score under heterogeneity was 3.46. The results were further evaluated by simulation to assess the probability of obtaining significant evidence in favor of linkage by chance as well as to take into account the possible influence of the BRCA2 locus, located at a recombination fraction of 0.25 from the new locus. The simulation substantiated the evidence of linkage at D13S1308 (P < 0.0017). The results warrant studies of this putative breast cancer predisposition locus in other populations. 445|Bent tail (BN:) is a spontaneous, semi-dominant mutation on the mouse X chromosome that produces tail deformities and, rarely, open neural tube defects. Analysis of 292 normal male and affected male and female progeny from an intraspecific back-cross involving BN: supports a gene order of cen-DXMit89-18.5 +/- 2.3 cM-DXMit166-1.4 +/- 0.7 cM-BN:-1.0 +/- 0.6 cM-DXMit140 -4.8 +/- 1.3 cM-DXBay6-tel. A high frequency of sex chromosomal non-disjunction, unrelated to the BN: mutation, was also identified in the background strain. Refined genetic and physical mapping of the BN: critical region demonstrate that the mutation is associated with a <170 kb submicroscopic deletion that includes the anonymous microsatellite marker DXMit208 as well as the entire Zic3 locus. Human mutations in ZIC3 are associated with left-right axis malformations (MIM 306955, 208530, 207100). Abnormalities of abdominal and thoracic situs were also detected in viable BN: males and females. The presence of anal and spinal abnormalities in some of the human patients and the deletion of Zic3 in BN: mice support a key role for this gene in neural tube development and closure. 446|The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is located on human Chromosome 6 and includes clusters of class I, class II, and class III genes. Centromeric to the class I region is a cluster of genes designated as MHC class IV encoding genes involved in immunity and inflammation, including the 1C7 gene. The human 1C7 gene has several alternatively spliced forms and potentially codes for proteins with at least three unique carboxy termini. 1C7 mRNA in human (h1C7) is present in spleen, tonsil, B and NK cell lines, and with a different splicing pattern in liver. The 1C7 RNA and protein are present at highest levels in the germinal center of the lymphoid follicles in tonsil. The protein is expressed in NKL cells, tonsil, and unexpectedly in brain. In contrast, the mouse 1C7 gene is transcribed in liver but is predicted to be a pseudogene. However, the 1C7 homologue expressed in rat is predicted to have long stretches of amino acids essentially identical to the human protein. 447|It has been known for some time that the neurofibrillary pathology in Alzheimer's disease consists of so-called paired helical and straight filaments made up of the microtubule-associated protein tau. The degree of dementia observed in the disease correlates better with the extent of neurofibrillary pathology than with the Abeta amyloid deposits, the other characteristic defining pathological fibrous deposit in Alzheimer's disease. However, no familial cases of Alzheimer's disease have been genetically linked to the tau protein locus. Recently a group of frontotemporal dementias with parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17 has been shown to be caused by mutations in the tau gene. Some are missense mutations giving altered tau proteins, whereas others affect the splicing of the pre-mRNA and change the balance between different tau isoforms. Histologically these diseases are all characterised by various kinds of filamentous tau protein deposits, mostly in the complete absence of Abeta deposits. The abnormal tau filaments show different morphologies, depending on the nature of the tau mutation. These diseases show that tau mutations can be a prime cause of inherited dementing illness and may throw some light on the pathological process in the much larger number of sporadic cases of Alzheimer's disease. 448|Cytogenetic data obtained from investigating 1001 patients of Down syndrome (DS) and their parents over a period of 20 years (January 1979-January 1999) are presented. The frequency of pure trisomy, mosaicism and translocation was 87.92, 7.69 and 4.39 per cent respectively. The origin of the extra chromosome 21 due to meiotic non-disjunction was 79.24 per cent maternal and 20.76 per cent paternal. A high frequency of acrocentric chromosome associations was also observed in mothers of children of Down syndrome, this might have predisposed to an enhanced risk for non-disjunction. Birth order of DS showed a higher number of first and second borns. Reproductive performances of the parents indicated a high rate of abortions, compared to controls. Cytogenetic investigations carried out over these years greatly helped in the management of these children and for counseling the affected families. 449|Functional inactivation of the tsg101 gene in mouse fibroblasts results in cell transformation and the ability to form metastatic tumors in nude mice. The human tsg101 gene was mapped to chromosome 11q15.1-2 and found to mutate in some cancer patients. To test the expression pattern of the tsg 101 gene in Chinese breast cancer patients, we analyzed the mRNA by RT-PCR in 51 breast cancer patients. The full-length tsg101 and 7 truncated transcripts were detected in both normal and matched tumor tissues. A short transcript with a deletion of nucleotides 154-1054 is frequently presented in late-stage breast cancers. TSG101 protein expression was also detected by Western blot analysis in 30 breast cancer patients. A predicted full-length 46 kDa and three proteins with smaller molecular weight were detected. The full-length 46 kDa protein was less expressed in tumor specimens. Immunohistochemical stains from 10 patients of each stage 0-4 revealed that TSG101 protein was predominantly present in the cytoplasm. Cell nuclei were occasionally immunopositive and the chromosomes were deeply stained during cell division. The intracellular location and the expression of TSG101 protein were both not stage-dependent in primary breast cancers. In addition, normal mammary glands were more homogenously immunopositive than invasive ductal carcinoma. These results support the notion that the aberrant expression of TSG101 in breast cancer is associated with altered cell growth. 450|The clonality of multifocal bladder tumors has been studied over the years with some controversial results. We have examined 5 patients with 2-11 low-grade superficial multifocal bladder tumors for loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at 87 loci on 9 chromosomes. When LOH was detected at a given marker, the tumors consistently showed deletion of a specific allele, suggesting the monoclonality of the patients' tumors. No allelic imbalancies were detected between heterozygote alleles, and the allelic losses were only slightly biased toward the loss of the shorter alleles as the overall ratio was 0.48 +/- 0.10 (0.50 for nonbiased). We calculated the probabilities for monoclonality using binomial distribution. The use of multiple tumors with multiple microsatellite markers gives high statistical power for the calculation. The combined probabilities for monoclonality varied from 0.984 to (1-4 x 10(-28)). Thus, in most (4/5) cases, the probability for polyclonality was <2 x 10(-16). These results demonstrate that superficial multifocal bladder tumors are most likely of monoclonal origin. 451|A subset of inattentive children have an underlying problem in sustaining wakefulness ("vigilance"). This disorder of vigilance, termed Weinberg's syndrome, is characterized by difficulty in maintaining wakefulness and alertness as evidenced by (among other symptoms) motor restlessness (fidgeting and moving about, yawning and stretching, talkativeness) and complaints of tiredness. During tasks requiring concentration (continuous mental activity) such as reading, children with Weinberg's syndrome will daydream, lose interest, complain of boredom, and become increasingly restless. Napping, while infrequent, usually is not refreshing. A distinct personality described by family members and friends as kind, affectionate, compassionate, or "angelic" also seems to characterize this condition. Weinberg's syndrome has a familial pattern suggesting autosomal-dominant inheritance. Additional neurophysiologic, pharmacotherapeutic, epidemiologic, and genetic studies will be necessary for a full understanding of Weinberg's syndrome. 452|Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome(BWS) is one of the most common overgrowth syndrome and is believed that imprinted genes contribute to the phenotypes of syndrome. Embryonic tumors are observed in 7.5%-10.0% of BWS, so BWS could be classified in one of the familial cancer syndrome. We describe here the causative mechanisms of BWS, mechanisms of tumorigenesis related to the BWS, and what to be uncovered in the next step. 453|OBJECTIVE: We report the prenatal detection by fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of a male fetus with trisomy 18. STUDY DESIGN: Total nucleated cells recovered from 7 mL of maternal peripheral blood by means of double-density gradient centrifugation were cultured for 3 days in a devised medium. RESULTS: Fetal cells with X- and Y-specific signals were detected in all the established cultures, but the yield and purity were higher in the culture from the 1077 Ficoll layer. Cumulatively, 84 fetal cells were recorded by analysis of 5640 cells. The hematopoietic lineages involved in the production of the fetal cells in culture were not assessed. For the cultures established with the 1119 Ficoll layer, the involvement of progenitors or precursors of the erythroid lineage was assumed because postculture sorting was directed toward cells expressing the erythropoietin receptor. CONCLUSION: We conclude that culturing total nucleated cells from maternal blood is a new procedure that could prove valuable in the detection of the main fetal aneuploidies affecting pregnant populations. 454|Tuberous sclerosis is an autosomal dominant hereditary disease caused by mutations in either the TSC1 or the TSC2 tumor suppressor gene. The TSC1 gene on chromosome 9q34 encodes a 130 kDa protein named hamartin, and the TSC2 gene on chromosome 16p13.3 codes for tuberin, a 200 kDa protein. Here we show that expression of hamartin, assayed by immunoblot analyses, is high in G(0)-arrested cells and hamartin is expressed throughout the entire ongoing cell cycle. An interaction of hamartin and tuberin can be detected in every phase of the cell cycle. Ectopic expression of high levels of hamartin attenuates cellular proliferation. We provide evidence that this effect could depend on a coiled-coil region earlier proposed to be involved in binding of hamartin to tuberin. Further investigations revealed that hamartin affects cell proliferation via deregulation of G(1) phase. Our data have a clear impact on understanding the role of hamartin during development of this disease. 455|HumDXS9898 also known as CHLC x GATA 126G01 is a tetrameric microsatellite marker located at the Xq21.33 pericentromeric region. In kinship testing HumDXS9898 is suitable for concomitant use with HumHPRTB and HumDXS6807 which are separated from HumDXS9898 by genetic map distance of 150 and 80 cM, respectively. HumDXS9898 is closely linked to HumARA. In the German population, HumDXS9898 exhibits seven clearly distinguishable alleles ranging from 189 to 214 basepairs in size. Deviation from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium could not be detected. The observed heterozygosity was 0.75 for females and the mean exclusion probability was 0.73 for female children. Mutations were not found in the present material. 456|Telomerase activity was examined by the telomeric repeat amplification protocol assay in 25 cases of lung adenocarcinoma, in relation to cancer cell differentiation, proliferation, and chromosome alterations. Telomerase activity, chromosome alterations, and cell proliferation assessed by Ki-67 labeling were significantly lower (P < .001 to .05) in well-differentiated (10 cases) than in moderately differentiated (8 cases) or poorly differentiated (7 cases) lesions. Telomerase activity by semiquantitative analysis with scoring of 0 to 3 was significantly correlated with similarly graded chromosome alterations (P < .05) and Ki-67 labeling indices (P < .002). Telomerase activity and chromosome alteration (T-C) indices generated by multiplication of telomerase activity and chromosome alteration scores also showed a significant correlation with cell differentiation. The Clara cell subtype, confirmed by electron microscopic analysis, significantly predominated in the well-differentiated group, showing a low grade of telomerase activity and chromosome alterations and low Ki-67 labeling indices, suggesting clinical relevance. No significant association of telomerase activity was found with p53 protein accumulation or Bcl-2 protein expression. The good correlation of telomerase activity with chromosome alterations, cell differentiation, and Ki-67 labeling indices suggests that this parameter might have potential application in estimation of prognosis. 457|Benzene is an established human carcinogen, producing leukemia, hematotoxicity and perhaps lymphoma. Its carcinogenicity is most likely dependent upon its conversion to phenol and hydroquinone, the latter being oxidized to the highly toxic 1,4-benzoquinone in the bone marrow. Exposure of human lymphocytes and cell lines to hydroquinone has previously been shown to cause various forms of genetic damage, including aneusomy and the loss and gain of chromosomes. However, the target cells for leukemogenesis are the pluripotent stem cells or early progenitor cells which carry the CD34 antigen (CD34(+) cells). In this study, human cord blood, which is particularly rich in CD34(+) cells, was exposed to hydroquinone for 72 h in a medium that favored CD34(+) cell survival and growth. CD34(+) and CD34(-) cells were then isolated. Fluorescence in situ hybridization was employed to determine the level of aneusomy of chromosomes 7 and 8 in both cell types. CD34(+) cells were generally more susceptible to aneusomy induction by hydroquinone than CD34(-) cells. Increased trisomy and monosomy of chromosomes 7 and 8 were observed in CD34(+) cells (P(trend) < 0.001), whereas in CD34(-) cells only an increased level of monosomy 7 was detected (P(trend) = 0.002). Particularly striking effects of hydroquinone were observed in CD34(+) cells on monosomy 7 and trisomy 8, two common clonal aberrations found in myeloid leukemias, suggesting that these aneusomies produced by hydroquinone in CD34(+) cells play a role in benzene-induced leukemogenesis. 458|The cases of children indicate suffering from X-linked ichthyosis accompanied by atopic diseases (bronchial asthma, allergic rhinitis, allergic conjunctivitis, atopic dermatitis) which developed in infancy. The examinations revealed microdeletion of the steroid sulfatase region (Xp22.3), increased total IgE value and polysensibilization. It seems that the steroid sulphatase deficiency in ichthyosis played a role in the development of the atopic diseases. The present study suggests the commencement of a strict diet and antihistamine therapy, already in its infancy, in order to prevent the development of the accompanying atopic diseases. 459|Minisatellites have been found in association with important features of human genome biology such as gene regulation, chromosomal fragile sites, and imprinting. Our knowledge of minisatellite biology has greatly increased in the past 10 years owing to the identification and careful analysis of human hypermutable minisatellites, experimental models in yeast, and recent in vitro studies of minisatellite recombination properties. In parallel, minisatellites have been put forward as potential biomarkers for the monitoring of genotoxic agents such as ionizing radiation. We summarize and discuss recent observations on minisatellites. In addition we take advantage of recent whole chromosome sequence data releases to provide a unifying view which may facilitate the annotation of tandem repeat sequences. 460|A case of extraskeletal myxoid chondrosarcoma (EMC) in which there was histochemical, immunohistochemical, and ultrastructural evidence of neuroendocrine differentiation is reported. Genetic investigations showed the recently described novel translocation t(9;17)(q22;q11.2) and associated fusion of the CHN and RBP56 genes, contrasting with the translocation t(9;22)(q22;q12) and EWS/CHN gene fusion found in the majority of EMCs. 461|Bovine expressed sequence tags (ESTs) containing microsatellites are suitable markers for both linkage and comparative maps. We isolated clones from a bovine fetal thigh skeletal muscle cDNA library that were positive for a (CA)10 probe. Thirty individual clones were isolated and characterised by sequencing. Sequences from the 5' and 3' ends of a clone were considered as separate ESTs until a contiguous sequence was identified. A total of 47 ESTs were sequenced from the 5' and/or 3' ends and full sequence was obtained for the 30 clones. BLAST nucleotide analysis identified significant homology to known mammalian coding regions for 31 of the bovine ESTs, 30 of which also matched human ESTs or sequence-tagged sites (STS). The remaining 16 bovine ESTs represented novel transcripts. Microsatellites were isolated in 27 of the ESTs, 11 of which were developed into markers and placed on the MARC bovine linkage map. Human cytogenetic map positions were available for 20 of the 30 human EST orthologs, and a putative bovine map position for 17 of the sequences could be inferred using comparative mapping data. These results demonstrated that mapping bovine ESTs containing microsatellites is a plausible strategy to increase the density of gene markers on the bovine linkage and comparative maps. 462|Genetic abnormalities were detected by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) in 12 ovarian clear cell adenocarcinomas. DNA sequence copy number abnormalities (CNAs) occurring in more than 20% of the cancers included increased copy numbers of 8q11-q13, 8q21-q22, 8q23, 8q24-qter, 17q25-qter, 20q13-qter and 21q22-qter and reduced copy numbers of 19p. Increases in copy numbers of 8q11-q13, 8q21-q22, 8q23 and 8q24-qter occurred more frequently in disease-free patients than in recurrent/non-surviving patients (p < 0.05). However, increases in copy numbers of 17q25-qter and 20q13-qter occurred more frequently in recurrent/non-surviving patients than in disease-free patients (p < 0.05). Furthermore, increases in copy numbers of 17q25-qter and 20q13-qter occurred together (p < 0.05). Additionally, there were negative correlations between increases in copy numbers of 8q21-q22 and 17q25-qter, and between 8q21-q22 and 20q13-qter (p < 0.05). It appears that ovarian clear cell adenocarcinomas can be classified into two subtypes, one being cancer with an increase in copy numbers of 8q and the other being cancer with increases in copy numbers of 17q25-qter and 20q13-qter. 463|This report describes the primary structure and functional characteristics of human ATA1, a subtype of the amino acid transport system A. The human ATA1 cDNA was isolated from a placental cDNA library. The cDNA codes for a protein of 487 amino acids with 11 putative transmembrane domains. The transporter mRNA ( approximately 9.0 kb) is expressed most prominently in the placenta and heart, but detectable level of expression is evident in other tissues including the brain. When expressed heterologously in mammalian cells, the cloned transporter mediates Na(+)-coupled transport of the system A-specific model substrate alpha-(methylamino)isobutyric acid. The transport process is saturable with a Michaelis-Menten constant of 0. 89 +/- 0.12 mM. The Na(+):amino acid stoichiometry is 1:1 as deduced from the Na(+)-activation kinetics. The transporter is specific for small short-chain neutral amino acids. The gene for the transporter is located on human chromosome 12. 464|The involvement of Sertoli cells in different spermatogenic impairments has been studied by an immunohistomorphometric technique using cytokeratin-18 (CK-18) as a marker for immature Sertoli cells. CK-18 is known to be expressed in Sertoli cells during prenatal and prepubertal differentiation and is normally lost at puberty. Forty-nine azoospermic men were included in the current study. Quantitative measurements on testicular biopsies revealed the highest CK-18 expression in the mixed atrophy biopsies (22 men), a lower expression in the Sertoli cell-only (SCO) biopsies (12 men), and minimal residual staining in the group considered as representing normal spermatogenesis (six obstructive azoospermia patients). The cytokeratin immunopositive-stained tubules were associated either with arrest in spermatogenesis or with SCO. Examination of sections from nine men with microdeletions in the AZF region of the Y chromosome revealed that these men were either negative for CK-18 expression or showed only weak residual staining. This may suggest that the spermatogenic defect in the AZF-deleted men originates in the germ cell and has no impact on Sertoli cell maturation. The cause that determined the spermatogenic defect in the other cases of male infertility with high CK-18 expression may have damaged both the Sertoli and the germ cells. 465|OBJECTIVE: To describe, by morphometric and chromatin texture analysis, a series of adrenal gland lesions, including Cushing's and Conn's adenomas and incidentalomas. STUDY DESIGN: The material for the study consisted of five consecutive cases of incidentaloma, three cases of Conn's adenoma and three cases of Cushing's adenoma. Also included were five cases of adrenal carcinoma. Sections were stained according to the Feulgen procedure. Measurements were taken from the nodules and from two different zones, identified as outer and inner parts, of the normal-appearing adrenal cortex adjacent to the tumor. Data on approximately 50 nuclei were recorded for each of these three sites (tumor and outer and inner normal-appearing adrenal cortex). The nuclei were subjected to feature extraction and were analyzed by identification procedures--i.e., establishing nuclear and lesion signatures. RESULTS: The total optical density (OD) distributions of the nuclei from the normal-appearing adrenal cortex pointed to their diploid or near-diploid nature. In incidentalomas there was a very small increase in the number of nuclei, with increased total OD. In Conn's adenoma there was a noticeable but modest extension of the total OD distribution into the higher OD range. This trend continued for Cushing's adenoma. The pixel OD histograms for nuclei from normal-appearing tissue and from incidentalomas were hardly distinguishable. Starting with nuclei from Conn's adenoma, a shift toward lower pixel OD values began. The trend continued for nuclei from Cushing's adenoma and was very pronounced for nuclei from carcinoma. The nuclear signatures showed no appreciable difference between nuclei from normal-appearing cortex and from incidentaloma. Nuclei from Conn's adenoma were more similar to those from normal tissue in their signatures than nuclei from Cushing's adenoma. In fact, the nuclear signatures from Cushing's adenoma were almost identical to those of carcinoma. The lesion signatures for normal tissue, incidentaloma and Conn's adenoma confirmed the results seen in the nuclear signatures. There was a very modest increase in the number of nuclei with greater deviation from normal in incidentalomas, and the trend was more obvious in Conn's adenoma. However, in Cushing's adenoma there was a very substantial increase in the number of nuclei, with large deviations of their nuclear chromatin texture from normal. CONCLUSION: Computer-assisted analysis of nuclear characteristics proved useful in identifying and describing differences between groups of tumors arising in the adrenal cortex and highlighted the similarity between incidentalomas and adjacent normal-appearing cortex and between Cushing's adenoma and adrenal carcinoma. 466|The frequency of multiple sclerosis (MS) with clinical onset before 16 years of age in different regions of Russia fluctuates from 2 to 10% of all MS patients. One of the most frequent signs of MS manifestation and/or exacerbation at this age is optic neuritis (ON). Forty-seven children with MS were observed in Moscow. Diagnosis of MS in every case was clinically definite and proved by serial MRI. Clinico-tomographic dissociation was noticed: numerous large lesions, typical for MS on T2 images were often seen in children with mild or moderate residual neurological symptoms. All patients had relapsing/remitting MS course, mean EDSS was 2.24+/-0.26. Thirty-eight children (80%) had ON at least once, ten (21.3%) - twice or more times. In several cases ON had subclinical course or might be missed and the damage of the optic nerve with partial atrophy was found only after complex ophthalmological investigation including visual evoked potentials. Thus, the clinical course of MS and ON have some peculiarities in children and may be genetically based. Analyses of allelic polymorphisms of HLA-DR and TNF loci on chromosome 6 was performed. Data from children with MS were compared with data from their parents, healthy controls and other MS patients from the same ethnic group. Children with MS had increased frequency of DR2(15) and TNF-a11, but not TNF-a9 as adult MS patients from the same ethnic group. The presence of TNF-a7, rare in adult patients, could be proposed as a marker of early MS onset. 467|Two HeLa variants defective in the mismatch repair protein hPMS2 were isolated by selection for methylation tolerance. Neither variant expressed detectable hPMS2 protein as determined by western blotting. Cell extracts were defective in correcting a single base mispair and were unable to perform mismatch repair-dependent processing of a methylated DNA substrate. Correction of the repair defect and restoration of sensitivity to a methylating agent was achieved by introducing a wild-type copy of chromosome 7 on which the hPMS2 gene is located. Loss of hPMS2 function in the HeLa variants was associated with a 5-fold increase in mutation frequency in the supF gene of the pZ189 shuttle vector. Wild-type levels of mutagenesis were restored by the transferred chromosome 7. Comparisons of mutational spectra identified multiple base substitutions, frameshifts and, to a lesser extent, single base pair changes as the types of mutation which are selectively increased in a hPMS2-defective background. The location of multiple mutations and frameshifts indicates that misalignment-mediated mutagenesis could underlie most of these events. Thus the mutator phenotype associated with loss of hPMS2 most likely arises because of the failure to correct replication slippage errors. Our data also suggest that a considerable fraction of mutagenic intermediates are recognized by the hMutSbeta complex and processed via the hMLH1/hPMS2 heterodimer. 468|Some insight into human evolution has been gained from the sequencing of four Y chromosome genes. Primary genomic sequencing determined gene SMCY to be composed of 27 exons that comprise 4,620 bp of coding sequence. The unfinished sequencing of the 5' portion of gene UTY1 was completed by primer walking, and a total of 20 exons were found. By using denaturing HPLC, these two genes, as well as DBY and DFFRY, were screened for polymorphic sites in 53-72 representatives of the five continents. A total of 98 variants were found, yielding nucleotide diversity estimates of 2.45 x 10(-5), 5. 07 x 10(-5), and 8.54 x 10(-5) for the coding regions of SMCY, DFFRY, and UTY1, respectively, with no variant having been observed in DBY. In agreement with most autosomal genes, diversity estimates for the noncoding regions were about 2- to 3-fold higher and ranged from 9. 16 x 10(-5) to 14.2 x 10(-5) for the four genes. Analysis of the frequencies of derived alleles for all four genes showed that they more closely fit the expectation of a Luria-Delbrück distribution than a distribution expected under a constant population size model, providing evidence for exponential population growth. Pairwise nucleotide mismatch distributions date the occurrence of population expansion to approximately 28,000 years ago. This estimate is in accord with the spread of Aurignacian technology and the disappearance of the Neanderthals. 469|Vascular endothelial cells (VEC) transduce mitogenic and chemoattractant signals in response to erythropoietin (Epo). An analysis of changes in gene expression in VEC would be helpful to understanding the molecular nature of mitogenic signals. An effective method for analysis of gene expression is through differential display. Using this approach, we obtained from Epo-treated human microvascular endothelial cells (HMVEC) a cDNA fragment with characteristics of the 3'end of mRNA. Using the cDNA fragment, we then isolated a full-length clone from a HMVEC cDNA library. The cDNA of interest encodes a protein consisting of 404 amino acids with a carboxy-terminal end sequence identical to glialblastoma cell differentiation factor-related protein (GBDR1). Northern blot analysis showed that GBDR1 mRNA was ubiquitously expressed in human tissues. In Southern blot analysis, GBDR1 cDNA identified a single gene on chromosome 9. Since analysis of the amino acid sequence revealed several putative phosphorylation sites for different protein kinases, the GBDR1 protein was expressed and purified from bacterial extracts and, as predicted, casein kinase II phosphorylated GBDR1 in vitro. Immunofluorescence and biochemical data revealed that the GBDR1 protein is not entirely localized in the cytosolic fraction, suggesting that it may interact with another protein(s). These findings demonstrate that GBDR1 is an intracellular signaling molecule that may play a role in the regulation of endothelial cell growth. 470|We report an infant with holoprosencephaly (HPE), sacral anomalies, and situs ambiguus with a 46,XY,der(7)t(2;7)(p23.2;q36.1) karyotype as a result of an adjacent-1 segregation of a t(2;7)pat. The chromosomal abnormality was diagnosed prenatally after sonographic detection of HPE in the fetus. The baby was born at 37 weeks gestation, and died in the newborn period; he had dysmorphic features consistent with HPE sequence. Postmortem internal evaluation showed semilobar HPE, abdominal situs ambiguus, multiple segments of bowel atresia, dilatation of the ureters, and bony sacral anomalies. Molecular analysis confirmed hemizygosity for the SHH and HLXB9 genes, which are likely to be responsible for the HPE and sacral phenotypes, respectively. Immunohistochemical studies showed intact dopaminergic pathways in the mesencephalon, suggesting that midbrain dopamine neuron induction appears to require only one functioning SHH allele. 471|The acromesomelic dysplasias (AMDs) are a group of genetic disorders that primarily affect the middle and distal segments of the extremities. A form of AMD is present on the isolated island of St Helena in the South Atlantic, which has a population of approximately 5500 derived from a number of founder individuals. DNA from four affected individuals and 11 first-degree relatives in four related nuclear families segregating an AMD was collected for gene mapping studies. Six consecutive markers on chromosome 9, spanning an approximately 5 cM region, showed identical homozygosity in all affected individuals, thus identifying a region of homozygosity by descent. Multipoint analysis generated a maximum lod score of Z = 2.85. These data localize the gene for this dysplasia to the pericentromeric region of chromosome 9 where the gene for the Maroteaux form of AMD is situated. The identification of the gene responsible for this disorder may shed further light on the complex processes involved in limb morphogenesis. 472|Malignant ovarian germ cell tumors (OGCTs) include immature teratomas (ITs), dysgerminomas (DGs), endodermal sinus tumors (ESTs), choriocarcinomas, and embryonal carcinomas. Knowledge about the genetic changes associated with malignant OGCT development is sparse. We therefore analyzed 25 OGCTs (12 DGs, 4 ESTs, and 9 ITs) for gains and losses by comparative genomic hybridization. In total, more gains than losses were observed, and the number of alterations ranged from 0-20 per tumor. The average number of changes among DGs, ESTs, and ITs was 10, 6, and 1.4, respectively. The most common changes in DGs were gains from chromosome arms 1p (33%), 6p (33%), 12p (67%), 12q (75%), 15q (42%), 20q (50%), 21q (67%), and 22q (58%); gains of the whole of chromosomes 7 (42%), 8 (42%), 17 (42%), and 19 (50%); and losses from 13q (58%). Two of three DGs with a gonadoblastoma component showed gains of 3p21 and loss of 5p, whereas none of the nine pure DGs had these changes, suggesting that they might be characteristic either of gonadoblastoma or of DG developing from a gonadoblastoma. Gain of 12p and gain from 1q were seen in three of four ESTs, whereas gains from 3p, 11q, and Xp and loss from 18q were each found in two tumors. Five of the ITs revealed changes (range, 1-4 changes/tumor), with gains from 1p, 16p, 19, and 22q each being found in two tumors. We conclude that ovarian DGs and ESTs seem to develop via the same genetic pathways that are already known for testicular germ cell tumors. On the other hand, ITs do not exhibit gain of 12p and also typically show fewer changes than other malignant OGCTs, indicating that they arise via different pathogenetic mechanisms. 473|The human CD80 costimulatory molecule is an important signal between professional antigen-presenting cells and T helper cells. The immunobiology of CD80 expression by keratinocytes, especially during allergic and irritant contact dermatitis, however, is less well understood. CD80 cell surface expression and gene transcription by keratinocytes was increased when keratinocytes were exposed to certain allergens (chemicals that induce inflammation via hapten-specific T cells) and irritants (chemicals that are toxic to epidermal cells). Therefore, the human CD80 promoter was cloned and luciferase reporter constructs containing various promoter fragments were engineered. Promoter mapping of these CD80 constructs in transiently transfected keratinocytes showed that a construct containing the proximal 231 bp immediately upstream of the transcription start site of the CD80 promoter was most active in keratinocytes and was inducible to a level ranging from 2- to 10-fold higher in keratinocytes treated with certain allergens and irritants, compared with untreated keratinocytes. This pattern of promoter fragment activity in keratinocytes is identical to that found in professional antigen-presenting cells. This is the first demonstration that the CD80 promoter is active in keratinocytes and that this activity is further increased in keratinocytes treated with certain allergens and irritants. These data suggest that allergens and irritants may, in part, break peripheral tolerance by their direct effects on keratinocyte costimulatory molecule expression, thereby facilitating interactions with epidermotropic T helper cells via the CD80-CD28 or CTLA-4 pathways. 474|Centromere protein A (CENP-A) is a variant of histone H3 with more than 60% sequence identity at the C-terminal histone fold domain. CENP-A specifically locates to active centromeres of animal chromosomes and therefore is believed to be a component of the specialized centromeric nucleosomes on which the kinetochores are assembled. Here we report that CENP-A, highly purified from HeLa cells, can indeed replace histone H3 in a nucleosome reconstitution system mediated by nucleosome assembly protein-1 (NAP-1). The structure of the nucleosomes reconstituted with recombinant CENP-A, histones H2A, H2B, and H4, and closed circular DNAs had the following properties. By atomic force microscopy, "beads on a string" images were obtained that were similar to those obtained with nucleosomes reconstituted with four standard histones. DNA ladders with repeats of approximately 10 bp were produced by DNase I digestion, indicating that the DNA was wrapped round the protein complex. Mononucleosomes isolated by glycerol gradient sedimentation had a relative molecular mass of approximately 200 kDa and were composed of 120-150 bp of DNA and equimolar amounts of CENP-A, and histones H4, H2A, and H2B. Thus, we conclude that CENP-A forms an octameric complex with histones H4, H2A, and H2B in the presence of DNA. 475|Comparative genomic hybridisation (CGH) is a technique which identifies gains and losses of DNA sequence copy number in tumours. We used CGH to search for genetic changes in one of the most aggressive malignancies--anaplastic thyroid carcinoma (ATC). For this purpose, we analysed tumour specimens of nine ATCs and DNA of two ATC cell lines. CGH detected aberrations in 10 of 11 samples, with a mean number of gains or losses per carcinoma of 4.8 (range 0-13). Total or partial changes of chromosome 8 (n=6), including gains or losses of 8p (n=6) or 8q (n=5) were those detected most frequently. Chromosome 5p was amplified in five cases. Gains in two of three samples were found for 3q, 7p, 11q and 20q. Gains in a fewer number were seen for 1p (1 case), 1q (1), 7q (2), 9q (2), 11p (2), 12q (1), 14 (1), 15 (1), 17q (2), 18p (2), 18q (1), 20p (1), 21 (2), Xp (2) and Xq (2). Losses were less frequent than gains and observed for 1p (2 cases), 1q (1), 2p (1), 2q (2), 3p (2), 3q (1), 4q (2), 6q (1), 9p (2), 9q (1), 18p (1), 18q (1) and Y (2). Examples of analysis of tumour sections and cell lines performed by fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) confirmed the gains and losses found by CGH and detected additional signals for 8q21 in tumour cells in a sample with no gains or losses normally in CGH. The results suggest that aberrations of 5p, 8p and 8q, which are rarely found in differentiated thyroid carcinoma, may play an important role in the development of ATC. Therefore, these chromosomes could harbour gene loci potentially involved in the aggressiveness of neoplastic tumours, as shown in tumours such as in this study for ATC. 476|Members of the Sox gene family encode transcription factors that have diverse and important functions during development. We have recently described the cloning of chick and mouse Sox14 and the expression of these genes in a population of ventral interneurons in the embryonic spinal cord. We report here the cloning and sequencing of the human orthologue of Sox14. Human SOX14 shows remarkable sequence conservation compared with orthologues from other vertebrate species and probably mirrors the expression of these genes in the developing brain and spinal cord. Using radiation hybrid mapping and fluorescence in situ hybridisation, we have localised SOX14 close to the sequence tagged site D3S1576 on human chromosome 3q23. Three congenital disorders have been localised to this region: blepharophimosis-ptosis-epicanthus inversus syndrome (BPES), Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy type IIB (CMT2B) and Mobius syndrome type 2 (MBS2). We have found that SOX14 is unlikely to be involved in any of these disorders because of the position of SOX14 proximal to a BPES breakpoint and the lack of SOX14 coding region alterations in BPES, CMT2B and MBS2 patients. 477|Papillary thyroid carcinomas, most of which are characterized by slow growth and good prognosis, account for the majority of thyroid carcinomas. To provide appropriate postoperative management, it is important to classify them by prediction of their prognosis. To find genetic markers associated with poor prognosis, allelic loss at all 39 nonacrocentric chromosome arms was compared in 24 deceased cases and 45 age-, sex-, stage-, and type-matched survived cases. Allelic loss was examined in primary tumors from both groups using highly polymorphic microsatellite markers on 39 nonacrocentric autosomal arms. Age at diagnosis, sex, stage, and types of tumors were matched between the two groups. No recurrent tumor was used for DNA analysis. Mean fractional allelic loss in the deceased and survived cases was 0.10+/-0.08 and 0.03+/-0.05 (P < 0.001). The survived cases showed marginal frequencies of allelic loss throughout all chromosome arms except 22q. The deceased cases showed frequent allelic losses on chromosomes 1q (37%), 4p (21%), 7q (20%), 9p (36%), 9q (31%), and 16q (29%), with significant difference (P < 0.05). These chromosome regions may include tumor suppressor genes whose inactivation is associated with aggressive phenotypes of papillary thyroid carcinoma. 478|The idiopathic inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), consisting of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, are complex genetic disorders involving chronic inflammation of the intestines. Multiple genetic loci have been implicated through genome-wide searches, but refinement of localization sufficient to undertake positional cloning efforts has been problematic. This difficulty can be obviated through identification of ancestrally shared regions in genetic isolates, such as the Chaldean population, a Roman Catholic group from Iraq. We analyzed four multiply affected American Chaldean families with inflammatory bowel disease not known to be related. We observed evidence for linkage and linkage disequilibrium in precisely the same region of chromosome band 1p36 reported previously in an outbred population. Maximal evidence for linkage was observed near D1S1597 by multipoint analysis (MLOD = 3.01, P = 6.1 x 10(-5)). A shared haplotype (D1S507 to D1S1628) was observed over 27 cM between two families. There was homozygous sharing of a 5 cM portion of that haplotype in one family and over a <1 cM region in the second family. Homozygous sharing of this haplotype near D1S2697 and D1S3669 was observed in one individual in a third multiply affected family, with heterozygous sharing in a fourth family. Linkage in outbred families as well as in this genetic isolate indicates that a pathophysiologically crucial IBD susceptibility gene is located in 1p36. These findings provide a unique opportunity to refine the localization and identify a major susceptibility gene for a complex genetic disorder. 479|Wilms' tumor (WT) is associated with loss of heterozygosity at chromosome 11p13, the site of the Wilms' tumor suppressor gene, WT1. Although the preferential loss of maternal alleles suggested that differential allelic expression of WT1 might occur, this has not been evident in normal fetal tissues or WTs. In this study, we show that the WT1 antisense regulatory region is differentially methylated, with Southern blot analysis of four loss of heterozygosity-negative WTs and their corresponding normal kidneys indicating that allelic methylation is lost in WTs. Reverse transcription-PCR expression analysis correlates methylation with monoallelic expression of the antisense WT1 transcript (WT1-AS) in normal kidney. However, WTs display hypomethylation and biallelic expression of WT1-AS. Our findings are consistent with imprinting of WT1-AS in normal kidney and the relaxation of imprinting in Wilms' tumorigenesis. This identifies the WT1 antisense regulatory region in intron 1 as a primary site for epigenetic deregulation at chromosome 11p13 in WTs. 480|Methylthioadenosine phosphorylase (MTAP) deficiency in tumors can be therapeutically exploited for selective therapy. Many tumors lacking MTAP have been found to homozygously delete the chromosome 9p region containing the p16 tumor suppressor gene. Several methods have been used to detect chromosome 9p deletions in primary tumors. However, the accurate diagnosis of chromosome 9p deletions has been hampered by the presence of contaminating normal cells. In search of an accurate and sensitive diagnostic method, we have developed the real-time polymerase chain reaction assay using the TaqMan chemistry for quantitative detection of MTAP and p16 gene deletions. The assay's feasibility was tested with peripheral blood leukocytes (PBL) from 29 patients with adult T cell leukemia (ATL) previously analyzed with Southern blot analysis and validated on 39 PBL or bone marrow samples from childhood T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL). Homozygous deletions of MTAP and p16 genes were detected respectively in six (20.7%) and eight (27.6%) of 29 ATL samples and in 15 (38.5%) and 23 (59%) of 39 T-ALL samples. The results correlated well with those of Southern blot analysis. It is of significance that the newly developed method can successfully detect homozygous deletions of these genes in samples containing as low as 33% blast cells. This rapid and sensitive method may be useful in searching for candidates for selective therapy targeting MTAP deficiency. 481|Human inherited cataract is both clinically diverse and genetically heterogeneous. Here we report the identification of the first mutations affecting the major intrinsic protein of the lens, MIP, encoded by the gene MIP on 12q14. MIP is a member of the aquaporin family of membrane-bound water channels. The mutations identified are predicted to disturb water flux across the lens cell membrane. 482|Six different domains of CAG repeats from a human chromosome 12 specific cosmid library were identified, cloned, and sequenced. These CAG repeat domains were localized into the human chromosomic region 12q24.1. Five of them constitute repeat candidates for expansions in autosomal dominant neurological disorders with genetic anticipation, and they can also contribute to the chromosome walking in the human genome project. 483|We have identified a new human p53 homologue, p40 (p51/p63). This gene was mapped to the distal arm of 3q and was found to be essential for normal epithelial development. We used microsatellite and FISH analyses to search for genetic alterations of p40 in primary HNSCC. A more precise localization of p40 was completed using 6 known markers on 3q and a newly isolated microsatellite marker within the p40 gene. We also determined the genomic organization of the p40 gene using human YAC and BAC clones. Microsatellite analysis revealed that 14 of 26 (54%) primary HNSCC had allelic imbalance in at least 1 of the 7 microsatellite loci. However, FISH analysis with a p40 probe showed that a majority of HNSCC had an increased copy number of the locus regardless of allelic status. Thus, overrepresentation of the p40 locus may play an important role in the development of HNSCC. 484|OBJECTIVES: A critical issue in the management of prostate cancer is the ability to distinguish patients at risk of disease recurrence. The aim of this study was to determine whether specific physical alterations of chromosome 8 may be associated with disease recurrence and poor outcome using postoperative prostate-specific antigen (PSA) values as surrogate end points. METHODS: To test this hypothesis, we examined paired normal and tumor radical prostatectomy tissues from 25 patients with prostate cancer for chromosome 8 alterations using dual fluorescence in situ hybridization with a fluorescein-labeled 8p22-specific (8p) cosmid probe and a rhodamine-labeled 8-centromere-specific (8c) probe. The probes were enumerated in 200 nuclei per tissue. RESULTS: Of the 25 tumors examined, 22 demonstrated distinct classes of genetic alterations, or nuclear types, including disomy for 8p and 8c (1 tumor), loss of 8p and disomy for 8c (10 tumors), or loss of 8p concurrent with gain of 8c (11 tumors). The presence of even a small population of tumor nuclei characterized by the loss of 8p concurrent with the gain of 8c was correlated with poor tumor grade (P = 0.009), preoperative PSA values 11 ng/mL or higher (P = 0.022), high tumor stage (P = 0.086), and detectable, rising postoperative PSA values (P = 0.086). These observations are consistent with the hypothesis that a gain of chromosome 8 is associated with poor outcome in prostate cancer. CONCLUSIONS: 8p loss concurrent with 8c gain may successfully predict disease recurrence and poor clinical outcome before the observation of detectable postoperative PSA values in patients with prostate cancer. 485|In both human and mouse, the Igf2 gene, localized on chromosomes 11 and 7, respectively, is expressed from the paternally inherited chromosome in the majority of tissues. Insulin-like growth factor-II (IGF-II) plays an important role in embryonic growth, and aberrant IGF2 expression has been documented in several human pathologies, such as Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS), and a wide variety of tumors. Human and mouse genetic data strongly implicate another gene, CDKN1C (p57(kip2)), located in the same imprinted gene cluster on human chromosome II, in BWS. p57(KIP2) is a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor and is required for normal mouse embryonic development. Mutations in CDKN1C (p57(kip2)) have been identified in a small proportion of patients with BWS, and removal of the gene from mice by targeted mutagenesis produces a phenotype with elements in common with this overgrowth syndrome. Patients with BWS with biallelic expression of IGF2 or with a CDKN1C (p57(kip2)) mutation, as well as overlapping phenotypes observed in two types of mutant mice, the p57(kip2) knockout and IGF-II-overexpressing mice, strongly suggest that the genes may act in a common pathway of growth control in situations where Igf2 expression is abnormal. Herein, we show that p57(kip2) expression is reduced on IGF-II treatment of primary embryo fibroblasts in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, p57(kip2) expression is down-regulated in mice with high serum levels of IGF-II. These data suggest that the effects of increased IGF-II in BWS may, in part, be mediated through a decrease in p57(kip2) gene expression. 486|The mammalian 2'-5' oligoadenylate synthetases (2'-5'OASs) are enzymes that are crucial in the interferon-induced antiviral response. They catalyze the polymerization of ATP into 2'-5'-linked oligoadenylates which activate a constitutively expressed latent endonuclease, RNaseL, to block viral replication at the level of mRNA degradation. A molecular evolutionary analysis of available OAS sequences suggests that the vertebrate genes are members of a multigene family with its roots in the early history of tetrapods. The modern mammalian 2'-5'OAS genes underwent successive gene duplication events resulting in three size classes of enzymes, containing one, two, or three homologous domains. Expansion of the OAS gene family occurred by whole-gene duplications to increase gene content and by domain couplings to produce the multidomain genes. Evolutionary analyses show that the 2'-5'OAS genes in rodents underwent gene duplications as recently as 11 MYA and predict the existence of additional undiscovered OAS genes in mammals. 487|Translocations of the chromosomal locus 11q23 that disrupt the MLL gene (alternatively ALL-1 or HRX) are frequently found in children's leukemias. These events fuse the MLL amino terminus in frame with a variety of unrelated proteins. Up to date, 16 different fusion partners have been characterized and more are likely to exist. No general unifying property could yet be detected amongst these proteins. We show here that the frequent MLL fusion partner ENL at 19p13.1 interacts with the human homologue of the mouse Abl-Interactor 1 (ABI1) protein. ABI1 in turn, is fused to MLL in the t(10;11)(p11.2;q23) translocation. ABI1 was identified as an ENL binding protein by a yeast two-hybrid screen. The interaction of ENL and ABI1 could be verified in vitro by far-Western blot assays and GST-pulldown studies as well as in vivo by co-immunoprecipitation experiments. A structure-function analysis identified an internal region of ENL and a composite motif of ABI1 including an SH3 domain as mutual binding partners. These data introduce novel aspects that might contribute to the understanding of the process of leukemogenesis by MLL fusion proteins. 488|In a 35-year old man with deep venous thrombosis liver metastases of an adenocarcinoma were observed. The primary tumour was not found. The patient had pigmentations on the lips and hamartomatous polyposis of the intestine. These findings indicate Peutz-Jeghers syndrome. In this syndrome there is an increased risk of, notably, gastrointestinal malignancy at an early age. Recent investigations have shown that Peutz-Jeghers syndrome is associated with a mutation in the STK11 gene on chromosome 19. 489|Chromosomal analysis of pre-implantation embryos was carried out in patients with a poor prognosis of full term pregnancy, which underwent induction of multiple follicular growth. In all, 1034 embryos generated from 191 stimulated cycles were screened for nine chromosome aneuploidy by using the multicolour fluorescence in situ hybridisation technique. Thirty-five percent of the diagnosed embryos were chromosomally normal, whereas the remaining presented with numerical abnormalities, which made them not suitable for transfer. The results obtained confirmed that the incidence of abnormalities is mostly dependent on age; however, monosomy and trisomy are more frequent in poor responders. Accordingly, the pregnancy rate per started cycle was significantly higher in women with a normal response to gonadotropic stimulation (33% vs. 8%, P<0. 001). These findings indicate that poor responder patients are physiologically exposed not only to reduced chances of implantation, but also to an increased risk of spontaneous abortion and trisomic pregnancies. 490|The deficiency of porin isoform 1 (HVDAC1) in human skeletal muscle has been associated with a pathological phenotype related to defects in the bioenergetic metabolism. In the best studied case, porin deficiency was not apparent in cultured fibroblasts: this observation raised the conclusion that no molecular defect was in the cDNA sequence coding for the protein. To get more insight in the pathogenetic mechanism that is involved in porin isoform 1 deficiency, we have determined the whole structure of the corresponding human gene. On the basis of the corresponding mouse gene structure and the human cDNA sequence, we designed long extension PCR amplifications using the whole genomic DNA as a template. Exonic/intronic regions were isolated and the exons and surrounding introns sequenced. The 5' and 3' extremities of the gene were determined by genome walking. The porin isoform 1 human gene is made up of 9 exons and spans about 33 kbp. A whole panel of PCR parameters was set and is now ready to be used for specific amplification upon patients' genomic DNA. The analysis of the putative promoter sequence was performed. It revealed the presence of a sterol Repressor element (SRE), an SRY, the testis-determining factor, and a nuclear respiratory factor 2 (NRF-2) binding site. These sites, according to results from literature, could be involved in the functional modulation of the gene expression. 491|The sequence from a human EST (IMAGE:259322) with homology to the nucleotide-sensitive chloride conductance regulator (ICln) was used to screen a human aortic cDNA library. The probe sequence was from a region of the EST lacking homology to ICln, and the goal was to isolate an ICln-like gene. A 2843bp cDNA clone with an open reading frame coding for a 561 amino acid protein was isolated. This clone had no homology to ICln. PROSITE analysis of the putative protein sequence reveals one tudor and two K homology (KH) domains. The gene has therefore been named TDRKH. Both KH and tudor motifs are involved in binding to RNA or single-strand DNA. PCR analysis demonstrated that TDRKH is alternatively spliced in several ways and alternatively polyadenylated at multiple sites. Northern analysis confirmed the presence of messages of multiple lengths with predominant bands at 2.8 and 4.0 kb and also demonstrated that TDRKH is widely expressed in human tissues. Within an intron of TDRKH, there is a region with 90% homology to ICln. This sequence, which is incorporated into the alternatively spliced message represented by IMAGE:259322, contains a 2 bp deletion that disrupts the ICln reading frame and therefore represents an ICln pseudogene. The TDRKH gene was mapped to the Epidermal Differentiation Complex (EDC) at chromosome 1q21 by radiation hybrid mapping and STS content of genomic clones from that region. The EDC contains a large cluster of related genes involved in terminal differentiation of the epidermis. It remains to be determined whether TDRKH has a specific role in epithelial function. 492|Inactivation of the beta4 subunit of the calcium channel in the mouse neurological mutant lethargic results in a complex neurological disorder that includes absence epilepsy and ataxia. To determine the role of the calcium-channel beta4-subunit gene CACNB4 on chromosome 2q22-23 in related human disorders, we screened for mutations in small pedigrees with familial epilepsy and ataxia. The premature-termination mutation R482X was identified in a patient with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. The R482X protein lacks the 38 C-terminal amino acids containing part of an interaction domain for the alpha1 subunit. The missense mutation C104F was identified both in a German family with generalized epilepsy and praxis-induced seizures and in a French Canadian family with episodic ataxia. These coding mutations were not detected in 255 unaffected control individuals (510 chromosomes), and they may be considered candidate disease mutations. The results of functional tests of the truncated protein R482X in Xenopus laevis oocytes demonstrated a small decrease in the fast time constant for inactivation of the cotransfected alpha1 subunit. Further studies will be required to evaluate the in vivo consequences of these mutations. We also describe eight noncoding single-nucleotide substitutions, two of which are present at polymorphic frequency, and a previously unrecognized first intron of CACNB4 that interrupts exon 1 at codon 21. 493|Several gene duplication events have led to the creation of at least five distinct members of the neuropeptide Y gene family. We now reveal that the most recent of these events, involving the PYY-PPY gene cluster on chromosome 17q21.1, has led to the creation of novel PYY- and PP-like genes on chromosome 17q11 in the human genome. Sequence analysis of the novel human PYY2 and PPY2 genes shows an extensive homology to the peptide YY-pancreatic polypeptide genes, at the level of gene structure, nucleotide sequence, and primary amino acid sequence. The extremely high degree of homology between the PYY-PPY and the PYY2-PPY2 gene clusters, in both coding regions and especially noncoding regions, suggests that the PYY2 and PPY2 genes have arisen by a very recent gene duplication. Similar gene duplication events of the PYY-PPY gene cluster have also occurred in other species, including cow and baboon, but have not been confirmed in the rat and mouse genomes. Interestingly, despite the greater than 92% nucleotide sequence identity between these new genes, a few specific mutations have resulted in significantly altered peptide sequences. These altered sequences are accompanied by acquisition of new functions apparently unrelated to the neurotransmitter/endocrine role of PYY and PPY, as demonstrated by the major involvement of bovine PYY2, also known as seminal plasmin, in the fertilization process. 494|Although telomerase is the major mechanism for telomere elongation in most cells, telomerase-independent mechanisms of telomere maintenance can allow cell survival. Yeast cells that lack telomerase maintain telomere length through a form of recombination known as gene conversion. Understanding the role that telomeric recombination might play in mammalian cells has important implications for cancer therapeutics. 495|Human papilloma virus (HPV) infection is the crucial step in the initiation of cervical carcinomas. In addition, HPV18 has been implicated in tumour progression and adverse clinical outcome. We determined the HPV types in 12 primary cervical carcinomas and 12 cell lines and compared the findings with the comparative genetic hybridisation (CGH) pattern of chromosomal alterations. The most frequent alteration was the deletion at 3p14 followed by the loss of 2q34-q36 along with 3q gain. High risk HPV types were detected in all samples except one primary tumour. In contrast to the normal distribution, HPV18 was present in 75% of cases including all cell lines. The cell lines carried a higher number of genetic alterations and a different CGH pattern for several chromosomes than the primary tumours, despite microdissection. Purely HPV18 positive cases indicated a high incidence of imbalances at specific loci with peaks of the histogram coinciding with known HPV integration sites. The study suggests that HPV infection is associated with a recurrent pattern of chromosomal changes in cervical carcinomas and that the development and progression of these alterations is triggered by integration into the host genome. 496|PURPOSE: To generate dose-response curves for X-ray-induced chromosomal aberrations analysed in human blood lymphocytes using telomeric and centromeric peptide nucleic acid (PNA) probes. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Isolated human lymphocytes were X-irradiated with doses of 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6 Gy. Aberrations were analysed in the first post-irradiation metaphases using telomeric and centromeric PNA probes. RESULTS: Similar to the dose-response curves for the yield of dicentrics and centric rings, the dose-response curves for interstitial fragments and incomplete elements (derived from either terminal deletions or incomplete exchanges) follow a linear-quadratic function. Furthermore, it was estimated that 76% of excess acentric fragments originate from complete exchanges (interstitial deletions) and only 24% from incomplete exchanges or terminal deletions. CONCLUSIONS: Interstitial fragments form a major class of radiation-induced chromosomal aberrations. They are induced about half as frequently as dicentrics over the whole dose range investigated. The comparable trend of the dose-response curve for the different aberrations, including incomplete elements, indicates that all detected aberrations are formed by a similar underlying mechanism. It also suggests that the ratio between non- or incomplete repair (leading to open ends of broken chromosomes) and incorrect repair (leading to exchange aberrations) is independent of dose. 497|Topoisomerase IIalpha (topoIIalpha) is a key enzyme in DNA replication and a molecular target for many anti-cancer drugs called topoII inhibitors. The topoIIalpha gene is located at chromosome band 17q12-q21, close to the ErbB-2 oncogene (HER-2/neu), which is the most commonly amplified oncogene in breast cancer. Because of the physical proximity to ErbB-2, copy number aberrations may also occur in the topoIIalpha gene. These topoIIalpha gene copy number aberrations may be related to the altered chemosensitivity to topoII inhibitors that breast cancers with ErbB-2 amplification are known to have. We used fluorescence in situ hybridization to study copy number aberrations of both topoIIalpha and ErbB-2 in nine breast cancer cell lines and in 97 clinical breast tumors, which were selected for the study according to their ErbB-2 status by Southern blotting. TopoIIalpha-protein expression was studied with Western blot and sensitivity to doxorubicin (a topoII inhibitor) with a 96-well clonogenic in vitro assay. Two of the five cell lines with ErbB-2 gene amplification (SK-BR-3 and UACC-812) showed amplification of topoIIalpha. In MDA-361 cells, ErbB-2 amplification (14 copies/cell) was associated with a physical deletion of topoIIalpha (four copies of chromosome 17 centromere and two copies of topoIIalpha). The topoIIalpha amplification in UACC-812 cells was associated with 5.9-fold-increased topoIIalpha protein expression and 2.5-fold-increased sensitivity to the topoII inhibitor, doxorubicin, whereas the deletion in MDA-361 leads to decreased protein expression (45% of control) and a 2.4-fold-increased chemoresistance in vitro. Of 57 ErbB-2-amplified primary breast carcinomas, 25 (44%) showed ErbB-2-topoIIalpha coamplification and 24 (42%) showed a physical deletion of the topoIIalpha gene. No topoIIalpha copy number aberrations were found in 40 primary tumors without ErbB-2 amplification. TopoIIalpha gene amplification and deletion are common in ErbB-2-amplified breast cancer and are associated with increased or decreased sensitivity to topoII inhibitors in vitro, respectively. These findings may explain the altered chemosensitivity to topoII inhibitors reported in ErbB-2-amplified breast cancers. 498|Bilharzial bladder cancer is the most common malignant neoplasm in Egypt, also occurring with a high incidence in other regions of the Middle East and East Africa. In a previous study, using centromere probes specific for chromosomes 3, 4, 7-11, 16, and 17, we demonstrated that monosomy of chromosome 9 (48.4%), and numerical aberrations of chromosome 17 (19.4%) were the most common observed imbalances. The present study extends the establishment of the baseline cytogenetic profile of this type of malignancy. Interphase cytogenetics by fluorescence in situ hybridization with the use of a panel of centromere-associated DNA probes for chromosomes 1, 2, 5, 6, 12, 13/21, 14, 15, 18, 19, 20, X, and Y was performed on paraffin-embedded bladder specimens from 25 Egyptian patients affected with bilharzial bladder cancer. No numerical aberrations were detected in the 25 cases for chromosomes 1, 2, 5, 6, 12, 13/21, 14, 15, 18, 19, 20, and X. However, loss of chromosome Y was observed in 7 of the 17 male cases studied (41.2%). No significant correlation was observed between loss of the Y chromosome and any of the different clinicopathologic characteristics of these cases. These data suggest that loss of the Y chromosome is the second frequent event that can occur in bilharzial bladder cancer. A molecular genetic model of bilharzial bladder cancer is evolving. 499|The voltage-sensitive sodium channel confers electrical excitability on neurons, a fundamental property required for higher processes including cognition. The ion-conducting alpha-subunit of the channel is regulated by two known auxiliary subunits, beta1 and beta2. We have identified rat and human forms of an additional subunit, beta3. It is most closely related to beta1 and is the product of a separate gene localized to human chromosome 11q23.3. When expressed in Xenopus oocytes, beta3 inactivates sodium channel opening more slowly than beta1 does. Structural modeling has identified an amino acid residue in the putative alpha-subunit binding site of beta3 that may play a role in this difference. The expression of beta3 within the central nervous system differs significantly from beta1. Our results strongly suggest that beta3 performs a distinct neurophysiological function. 500|Stimulation of the platelet nonintegrin collagen receptor, glycoprotein VI, evokes a signaling response similar to that induced by antigen receptor activation in B and T lymphocytes. A key transducer of the lymphocyte signaling pathways is the Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk)/Tec kinase family, which connects receptors to the elevation of intracellular-free calcium levels. An important signaling function for Btk in collagen-induced platelet activation in vitro was recently demonstrated by other researchers using Btk-deficient platelets from patients with X-linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA). Since Btk-deficiency does not induce an overt platelet-based bleeding disorder in vivo, collagen receptor responses may include other Btk/Tec kinase family members in normal platelets. Both Btk and Tec had increased tyrosine following stimulation of collagen receptors or CD32 cross-linking. Data from kinetic analyses and inhibitor studies and the use of phosphopeptide-specific antibodies recognizing 2 Btk regulatory phosphorylated tyrosine residues suggest a mechanism for coordinate recruitment of Btk and Tec through the immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif, Src family kinases, and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase. In XLA platelets, collagen treatment increased tyrosine phosphorylation of Tec and several other signaling proteins, including Lyn, Fyb, Slp-76, and the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein. This indicates that important elements of the collagen signaling pathway proximal and distal to Btk and Tec are preserved despite the lack of functional Btk. The results are consistent with the conclusion that activation of Tec may sustain XLA platelet function in vivo, while some in vitro assays of nonintegrin collagen receptor signaling through the Btk/Tec kinase family reflect the additive dosage of the transducers. (Blood. 2000;95:1663-1670)