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Kidney Week 2017: Emerging Role of Malignant Potential of Enzyme in Kidney Cancer

By: Susan Reckling
Posted: Friday, November 3, 2017

In the search for metabolic molecules that may be useful in predicting malignant changes possibly leading to renal cell carcinoma, Ching-Hsien Chen, PhD, of the University of California Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, and colleagues may have found one: methylthioadenosine phosphorylase (MTAP). Based on the results of their study, which were presented today at the American Society of Nephrology’s Kidney Week 2017 (Abstract FR-PO240) in New Orleans, a decrease in MTAP expression may prove to be a prognostic indicator in patients with renal cell carcinoma.

The investigators searched The Cancer Genome Atlas data sets to identify the potential metabolic molecules associated with the progression of renal cell carcinoma. They confirmed gene expression by several methods, including immunohistochemistry, qualitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, and Western blots.

MTAP and its substrate methylthioadenosine were found to be dysregulated in aggressive renal cell carcinoma. In renal cell carcinoma tissues, a decrease in MTAP expression was observed, which seemed to be correlated with tumor grade. In addition, the investigators reported that MTAP gene deletion was linked to worse overall survival in 538 patients with renal cell carcinoma.