Genomic imprinting plays a role in influencing the parental origin of genes involved in cancer–specific rearrangements. We have analysed 22 neuroblastomas with N–myc amplification to determine the parental origin of the amplified N–myc allele and the allele that is deleted from chromosome 1p. We analysed DNA from neuroblastoma patients and their parents, using four polymorphisms for 1 p and three for the N–myc amplicon. We determined that the paternal allele of N–myc was preferentially amplified (12 out of 13 cases; P = 0.002). However, the paternal allele was lost from 1 p in six out of ten cases, consistent with a random distribution (P > 0.2). These results suggest that parental imprinting influences which N–myc allele is amplified in neuroblastomas, but it does not appear to affect the 1p allele that is deleted in the cases that we have examined.
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