Gallbladder adenomas have molecular abnormalities different from those present in gallbladder carcinomas

Ignacio I. Wistuba, Juan F. Miquel, Adi F. Gazdar, Jorge Albores-Saavedra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

113 Scopus citations


Although most gallbladder carcinomas evolve from dysplasia and carcinoma in situ, the role of gallbladder adenomas in the pathogenesis of gallbladder carcinoma is still controversial. A series of molecular changes including loss of heterozygosity (LOH) at 17p (TP53 gene), 13q (RB gene), 18q (DCC gene), and 9p21 (CDKN2a gene) chromosomal regions have been identified in dysplasias, carcinomas in situ, and invasive carcinomas of the gallbladder, whereas mutations in K- and N-ras genes are rare. To determine whether the molecular abnormalities of adenomas are similar to those found in carcinomas, we obtained extracted DNA from precisely microdissected tissue from 16 gallbladder adenomas (14 pyloric and 2 intestinal-type). We determined the presence of mutations in TP53, K-and N-ras genes, and LOH at five chromosomal regions (5q22 APG-MCC region, RB, TP53, DCC and 9p21-CDKN2a). For the TP53 mutation study, single strand conformational polymorphism (SSCP) analysis in exons 4 to 8 were performed. K- and N-ras mutations detection was performed by designed restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) method and sequencing. Only a single LOH (at 5q22) was detected in a gallbladder adenoma of intestinal type. No mutations at the TP53 were detected. Four adenomas (25%) showed K-ras mutations (two in codon 12 and two in codon 61). We conclude that gallbladder adenoma lacks the molecular changes frequently detected in dysplasia, carcinoma in situ, and invasive carcinoma of the gallbladder. Likewise the occurrence of K-ras mutations at codon 12 and 61 in 25% of adenomas strongly suggests that these lesions are not precursors of invasive gallbladder carcinoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-25
Number of pages5
JournalHuman Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1999


  • Gallbladder adenomas
  • Gallbladder carcinoma pathogenesis
  • Ras gene mutations
  • TP53 gene mutations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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