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Chromosomal deletions at segment 11q23-q24 have been identified in a variety of human epithelial tumors, including cervical carcinoma (CC), indicating the presence in this region of at least a tumor suppressor gene (TSG) involved in the development of these neoplasms. To localize the 11q deletion target more precisely, 54 primary cervical carcinomas were examined for loss of heterozygosity (LOH) using a panel of microsatellite DNA markers mapping to 11 p. 15 and spanning region 11q23-qter. Nineteen tumors were found to have LOH at chromosome 11q. The highest frequency of LOH was observed at locus APOC-3, located in 11q23.1-q23.2, which was deleted in 42% of the informative cases. In contrast, LOH was infrequent at distal 11q in current series of CC. The smallest common region of loss included APOC-3 and was defined distally by marker D11S925 in region 11q23. The present data strongly suggest that the 11q suppressor gene(s) involved in cervical tumorigenesis is likely to be located at chromosome region 11q22-q23.