ABSTRACT: The majority of tumours in patients with hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer (HNPCC) occur in large intestine and endometrium; also, other tissues are at increased risk. We studied expression of hMLH1 and hMSH2 proteins in 148 normal samples of various tissues from non-HNPCC patients and in 14 normal colon tissues from HNPCC patients. Immunohistochemical technique was used. Intensity of nuclear staining, percentage of stained cells and H-scores were calculated. Tissues were divided into groups. Groups A, B and C included tissues with increased risk of cancer in HNPCC A) stomach, small and large bowel; (B) endometrium; (C) ovary, ureter, urinary bladder, kidney and liver. Group D tissues were without increased risk. Expression of the proteins was significantly higher in groups A, B and C compared with group D (P<0.0001, P=0.0004 for hMSH2 in C versus D). The expression was highest in testis. In colons of HNPCC patients, expression of the mutated gene product was significantly lower than in non-HNPCC patients. In conclusion, hMLH1/hMSH2 protein expression is constitutively higher in certain cell types of certain tissues, including the majority of tissues that are at increased risk of cancer in HNPCC. However, association of strong hMLH1/hMSH2 expression with cancer risk is not strictly valid.
Archiv für Pathologische Anatomie und Physiologie und für Klinische Medicin 03/2005; 446(2):112-9. · 2.49 Impact Factor