Inactivation of CACNA1G, a T-type calcium channel gene, by aberrant methylation of its 5' CpG island in human tumors

Minoru Toyota, Coty Ho, Mutsumi Ohe-Toyota, Stephen B. Baylin, Jean Pierre J. Issa

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136 Scopus citations


Using a newly developed PCR-based technique called methylated CpG island amplification, we have identified several DNA fragments that are aberrantly methylated in a colon cancer cell line. One of the fragments, termed MINT31, mapped to human chromosome 17q21, where frequent loss of heterozygosity is detected in various human tumors. By characterizing the genomic sequence around this area, we identified a gene encoding a T-type calcium channel, CACNA1G, as a target for hypermethylation in human tumors. By reverse transcriptase-PCR we detected expression of CACNA1G in normal colon and bone marrow, but expression was absent in the five tumor cell lines in which methylation was found. After treatment with the methylation inhibitor 5- deoxyazacytidine, the expression of CACNA1G was restored in all five cell lines. Detailed methylation mapping of the 5' CpG island by bisulfite-PCR revealed that methylation of a region 300-800 bp upstream of the translation initiation site closely correlated with the inactivation of CACNA1G. This region contained the transcription start site, as determined by 5' rapid amplification of cDNA ends analysis. Aberrant methylation of CACNA1G was also examined in various human primary tumors and was detected in 17 of 49 (35%) colorectal cancers, 4 of 16 (25%) gastric cancers, and 3 of 23 (13%) acute myelogenous leukemia cases. Inactivation of CACNA1G may play a role in cancer development by modulating calcium signaling, which potentially affects cell proliferation and apoptosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4535-4541
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Research
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 15 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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