beta-Catenin mutation and its nuclear localization are confirmed to be frequent causes of Wnt signaling pathway activation in pilomatricomas

Jianxin Xia, Kazunori Urabe, Yoichi Moroi, Tetsuya Koga, Hong Duan, Yulin Li, Masutaka Furue

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Background: beta-Catenin has been shown to play an important role in the formation of hair follicle-related tumors, including pilomatricomas. Several investigators have shown that beta-catenin gene mutation is observed in pilomatricomas. However, the relationship between the pattern of beta-catenin localization in the cell and beta-catenin gene mutation is still controversial. Objectives: This work was performed to determine the frequency of beta-catenin nuclear localization in pilomatricoma, the relationship between the pattern of beta-catenin localization and beta-catenin mutation, and the involvement of APC mutation. Methods: Typical 32 pilomatricomas were examined for beta-catenin expression by immunostaining. Genomic DNA was extracted, amplified and sequenced from 23 pilomaticomas with nuclear beta-catenin staining and 4 pilomaticomas without nuclear beta-catenin staining. Mutations of beta-catenin gene were confirmed by subcloning assay and restriction endonuclease assay. Results: Using immunostaining, we found that 81% (26/32) of pilomatricomas displayed nuclear beta-catenin staining in basophilic cells. Sequence analysis revealed that 61% (14/23) contained mutations in exon 3 of beta-catenin. However, no mutations were detected in 4 pilomaticomas without beta-catenin nuclear staining. Detected mutations were adjacent to or abolished well-known regulatory phosphorylation sites of beta-catenin. APC gene mutations were not detected in 27 pilomatricomas with/without beta-catenin nuclear staining. Conclusions: These results confirmed that beta-catenin mutation and its nuclear localization are frequent causes of Wnt signaling pathway activation and suggested that beta-catenin activation mutations contribute to tumorigenesis of pilomatricomas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-75
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Dermatological Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2006


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Dermatology

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