DCC genetic alterations and expression in endometrial carcinoma

Brigitte M. Ronnett, R. Tucker Burks, Kathleen R. Cho, Lora Hedrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


DCC (Deleted in Colorectal Carcinoma) is a candidate tumor suppressor gene located on the long arm of chromosome 18. DCC was initially identified and cloned during a search for the target gene located in a region of 18q that demonstrated loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in 70 to 80% of colorectal cancers. More recently, the region of 18q harboring the DCC gene has been shown to undergo LOH in approximately 14 to 30% of endometrial carcinomas. These findings suggest that DCC may be a target of LOH in at least some endometrial carcinomas and, therefore, may have a role in the pathogenesis of this common malignancy of the female genital tract. To address this possibility, we analyzed 26 cases of endometrioid endometrial carcinoma for DCC LOH and alterations in an AT microsatellite repeat located in an intron of the DCC gene. LOH was detected in one case (4%). Allelic shifts at the DCC AT repeat were detected in five (19%) additional cases. We also evaluated DCC protein expression by immunohistochemical analysis in normal, hyperplastic, and neoplastic endometrial tissues. Three proliferative and five secretory endometria and one simple endometrial hyperplasia demonstrated staining for DCC. Four of the 26 endometrioid endometrial carcinoma for which frozen tissue was available, including at least one from each histologic grade, and a case of endometrioid carcinoma confined to the endometrium completely lacked detectable staining for DCC. Although DCC LOH was infrequent in endometrial carcinomas, alterations of the gene (LOH or AT repeat alterations) were not uncommon (23% of our cases). In addition, DCC was expressed in normal endometrial tissue, whereas expression was lost in all of the five endometrial carcinomas. The combination of the genetic alterations and loss of DCC protein expression suggests that inactivation of the DCC gene may play a role in the pathogenesis of endometrial carcinoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38-46
Number of pages9
JournalModern Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1997


  • DCC
  • Deleted in Colorectal Cancer
  • endometrial carcinoma
  • immunohistochemistry
  • loss of heterozygosity
  • tumor suppressor gene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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