Novel germline mutations in the APC gene of Cypriot patients with familial and sporadic adenomatous polyposis

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Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) is one of the two commonest familial syndromes that predispose to colorectal cancer. FAP is caused by mutations in the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) tumour suppressor gene that has a high penetrance. The disease is characterized by the occurrence of hundreds to thousands of colorectal polyps, which if left untreated give rise to colorectal cancer. In Cyprus, there are no molecular data available as yet on families with FAP. This work presents the results of APC analysis in our population for the first time. The APC gene was analyzed in 33 DNA samples from 20 individuals belonging to four FAP families and 13 patients with sporadic polyposis. We identified three truncating mutations, four missense mutations and 11 polymorphisms. It is of interest that two of the three truncating mutations, 2307delA and Q1242X, are novel, which supports the existence of a unique genetic pool in the Cypriot population. This ethnic molecular study in addition to highlighting population heterogeneity also contributes to phenotype–genotype associations that are essential for the clinical management of FAP families in Cyprus.

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