Molecular Biology Reports

, Volume 39, Issue 5, pp 6171–6178 | Cite as

Epigenetic and genetic analysis of WNT signaling pathway in sporadic colorectal cancer patients from Iran

  • Fakhraddin NaghibalhossainiEmail author
  • Mozhdeh Zamani
  • Pooneh Mokarram
  • Islam Khalili
  • Mozhgan Rasti
  • Zohreh Mostafavi-pour


The WNT signaling is deregulated in most human colorectal cancers (CRC). Promoter methylation has been proposed as an alternative mechanism to inactivate genes in tumors. To gain insight into the methylation silencing of the WNT pathway during colorectal carcinogenesis, we examined the aberrant methylation profile of four genes, APC, Axin1, Axin2, and GSK3β in an unselected series of 112 sporadic colorectal tumors by methylation specific PCR. It has been suggested that the Axin2 C148T SNP is associated with the risk of developing certain types of cancers. To assess the contribution of Axin2 SNP to CRC susceptibility, we examined the Axin2 C148T genotype in CRC patients and 170 healthy controls by PCR-RFLP. The frequency of CRCs with at least one gene methylated was 18.75%. Promoter methylation of Axin2 and APC genes was detected in 7.1 and 11.9% of tumors, respectively. No aberrant methylation was found in Gsk3β and Axin1 gene in these tumor series. The methylation status of APC had no significant association with clinical parameters. But, promoter methylation of Axin2 was sex-related, occurring more frequently in females (P = 0.002). The frequency of Axin2 C148T genotypes were similar in patients and controls. Moreover, we observed no association between the Axin2 SNP and risk of CRC in patients stratified by age, sex, and smoking status. However, the heterozygote CT genotype was associated with a reduced CRC risk in distal patients compared with proximal patients (OR = 0.3; 95% CI 0.1–0.9, P = 0.04). Our findings indicate that Axin1 and GSK3β methylation play a minor role in colorectal carcinogenesis.


Colon cancer WNT signaling AXIN2 P50S SNP Methylation 



This study was part of the dissertation of Mozhdeh Zamani, submitted to Shiraz University of Medical Sciences in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the M.Sc. in biochemistry. This work was supported by a grant from the Vice Chancellor for Research, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fakhraddin Naghibalhossaini
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Mozhdeh Zamani
    • 1
  • Pooneh Mokarram
    • 1
  • Islam Khalili
    • 1
  • Mozhgan Rasti
    • 1
  • Zohreh Mostafavi-pour
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry, School of MedicineShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  2. 2.Autoimmune Research Center, School of MedicineShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  3. 3.Recombinant Protein LaboratoryShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran

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