• Kumaravel Somasundaram

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • Alterations in tumour suppressor gene p53 in human gliomas from Indian patients

      Pornima Phatak S Kalai Selvi T Divya A S Hegde Sridevi Hegde Kumaravel Somasundaram

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      Alterations in the tumour suppressorp53 gene are among the most common defects seen in a variety of human cancers. In order to study the significance of thep53 gene in the genesis and development of human glioma from Indian patients, we checked 44 untreated primary gliomas for mutations in exons 5–9 of thep53 gene by PCR-SSCP and DNA sequencing. Sequencing analysis revealed six missense mutations. The incidence of p53 mutations was 13⋅6% (6 of 44). All the six mutations were found to be located in the central core domain of p53, which carries the sequence-specific DNA-binding domain. These results suggest a rather low incidence but a definite involvement of p53 mutations in the gliomas of Indian patients.

    • BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline mutation analysis among Indian women from south India: identification of four novel mutations and high-frequency occurrence of 185delAG mutation

      Kannan Vaidyanathan Smita Lakhotia H M Ravishankar Umaira Tabassum Geetashree Mukherjee Kumaravel Somasundaram

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      Mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes profoundly increase the risk of developing breast and/or ovarian cancer among women. To explore the contribution of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations in the development of hereditary breast cancer among Indian women, we carried out mutation analysis of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes in 61 breast or ovarian cancer patients from south India with a positive family history of breast and/or ovarian cancer. Mutation analysis was carried out using conformation-sensitive gel electrophoresis (CSGE) followed by sequencing. Mutations were identified in 17 patients (28.0%); 15 (24.6%) had BRCA1 mutations and two (3.28%) had BRCA2 mutations. While no specific association between BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations with cancer type was seen, mutations were more often seen in families with ovarian cancer. While 40% (4/10) and 30.8% (4/12) of families with ovarian or breast and ovarian cancer had mutations, only 23.1% (9/39) of families with breast cancer carried mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. In addition, while BRCA1 mutations were found in all age groups, BRCA2 mutations were found only in the age group of ≤ 40 years. Of the BRCA1 mutations, there were three novel mutations (295delCA; 4213T → A; 5267T → G) and three mutations that have been reported earlier. Interestingly, 185delAG, a BRCA1 mutation which occurs at a very high frequency in Ashkenazi Jews, was found at a frequency of 16.4% (10/61). There was one novel mutation (4866insT) and one reported mutation in BRCA2. Thus, our study emphasizes the importance of mutation screening in familial breast and/or ovarian cancers, and the potential implications of these findings in genetic counselling and preventive therapy.

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