Genetic alterations of chromosome band 9p21-22 in head and neck cancer are not restricted to p16(INK4a)

Pamela Waber, Sandra Dlugosz, Qin Chang Cheng, John Truelson, Perry D. Nisen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Although genetic alterations of chromosome band 9p21-22 occur frequently in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) cell lines, alterations of the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p16(INK4a) located in this region are less common in corresponding primary tumors. To further investigate genetic alterations at 9p21-22 and p16(INK4a) in primary HNSCC, a paired set of 21 tumors and blood specimens that were shown previously to exhibit allelic loss at 3p and elsewhere, were tested for LOH at 9p21-22 using eight different highly polymorphic marker. Sixteen of the samples (81%) exhibited LOH for at least one marker. Frequent LOH was found surrounding p16(INK4a) and at three additional noncontiguous regions of 9p21-22. No homozygous deletions were identified. SSCP screening and direct sequence analysis led to the identification of mutations the p16(INK4a) gene in two tumors. p16(INK4a) was not hypermethylated in any of the samples studied. Furthermore, there was no correlation between LOH at 9p21-22 and the RB1 tumor suppressor gene. These findings indicate that in the set of tumors that we tested, LOH at 9p21-22 is common in primary HNSCC but that genetic alterations of p16(INK4a) located in this region are unusual. Additional tumor suppressor genes at 9p21-22 may therefore be involved in the pathogenesis of this tumor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1699-1704
Number of pages6
Issue number14
StatePublished - 1997


  • Chromosome 9
  • Cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors
  • Loss of heterozygosity
  • P16(INK4a)
  • Squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


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