Convergence of congenic mapping and allele-specific alterations in tumors for the resolution of the Skts1 skin tumor susceptibility locus.

UCSF Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94143, USA.
Oncogene (Impact Factor: 8.56). 07/2007; 26(28):4171-8. DOI: 10.1038/sj.onc.1210206
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Although several familial cancer genes with high-penetrance mutations have been identified, the major genetic component of susceptibility to sporadic cancers is attributable to low-penetrance alleles. These 'weak' tumor susceptibility genes do not segregate as single Mendelian traits and are therefore difficult to find in studies of human populations. Previously, we have proposed that a combination of germline mapping and analysis of allele-specific imbalance in tumors may be used to refine the locations of susceptibility genes using mouse models of cancer. Here, we have used linkage analysis and congenic mouse strains to map the major skin tumor susceptibility locus Skts1 within a genetic interval of 0.9 cM on proximal chromosome 7. This interval lies in an apparent recombination cold spot, and corresponds to a physical distance of about 15 Mb. We therefore, used patterns of allele-specific imbalances in tumors from backcross and congenic mice to refine the location of Skts1. We demonstrate that this single tumor modifier locus has a dramatic effect on the allelic preference for imbalance on chromosome 7, with at least 90% of tumors from the congenics showing preferential gain of markers on the chromosome carrying the susceptibility variant. Importantly, these alterations enabled us to refine the location of Skts1 at higher resolution than that attained using the congenic mice. We conclude that low-penetrance susceptibility genes can have strong effects on patterns of allele-specific somatic genetic changes in tumors, and that analysis of the directionality of these somatic events provides an important and rapid route to identification of germline genetic variants that confer increased cancer risk.

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    ABSTRACT: Genome-wide association studies have revealed that many low-penetrance cancer susceptibility loci are located throughout the genome; however, a very limited number of genes have been identified so far. Using a forward genetics approach to map such loci in a mouse skin cancer model, we previously identified strong genetic loci conferring resistance to early-stage chemically induced skin papillomas on chromosome 7 with a large number of [(FVB/N×MSM/Ms)×FVB/N] F1 backcross mice. In this report, we describe a combination of congenic mapping and allele-specific alteration analysis of the loci on chromosome 7. We used linkage analysis and congenic mouse strains to refine the location of Stmm1 (Skin tumor modifier of MSM 1) locus within a genetic interval of about 3 cM on proximal chromosome 7. In addition, we used patterns of allele-specific imbalances in tumors from F1 backcross and N10 congenic mice to narrow down further the region of Stmm1 locus to a physical distance of about 5.4 Mb. To gain the insight into the function of Stmm1 locus, we carried out a long term BrdU labelling experiments with congenic mice containing Stmm1 locus. Interestingly, we observed a decrease of BrdU-LRCs (Label Retaining Cells) in a congenic strain heterozygous or homozygous for MSM allele of Stmm1. These results suggest that Stmm1 responsible genes may have an influence on papillomagenesis in the two-stage skin carcinogenesis by regulating epidermal quiescent stem cells.
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    ABSTRACT: MSM/Ms is an inbred mouse strain derived from a Japanese wild mouse, Mus musculus molossinus. In this study, we showed that MSM/Ms mice exhibit dominant resistance when crossed with susceptible FVB/N mice and subjected to the two-stage skin carcinogenesis protocol using 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene (DMBA)/ 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA). A series of F1 backcross mice were generated by crossing p53(+/+) or p53(+/-) F1 (FVB/N × MSM/Ms) males with FVB/N female mice. These generated 228 backcross animals, approximately half of which were p53(+/-), enabling us to search for p53-dependent skin tumor modifier genes. Highly significant linkage for papilloma multiplicity was found on chromosomes 6 and 7 and suggestive linkage was found on chromosomes 3, 5 and 12. Furthermore, in order to identify stage-dependent linkage loci we classified tumors into three categories (<2mm, 2-6mm and >6mm), and did linkage analysis. The same locus on chromosome 7 showed strong linkage in groups with <2mm or 2-6mm papillomas. No linkage was detected on chromosome 7 to papillomas >6mm, but a different locus on chromosome 4 showed strong linkage both to papillomas >6mm and to carcinomas. This locus, which maps near the Cdkn2a/p19(Arf) gene, was entirely p53-dependent, and was not seen in p53 (+/-) backcross animals. Suggestive linkage conferring susceptibility to carcinoma was also found on chromosome 5. These results clearly suggest distinct loci regulate each stage of tumorigenesis, some of which are p53-dependent.
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