Journal of Gastrointestinal Cancer

, Volume 45, Issue 1, pp 40–47 | Cite as

Role of hMLH1 and E-Cadherin Promoter Methylation in Gastric Cancer Progression

  • Meysam Moghbeli
  • Omeed Moaven
  • Bahram Memar
  • Hamid Reza Raziei
  • Azadeh Aarabi
  • Ezzat Dadkhah
  • Mohammad Mahdi Forghanifard
  • Fatemeh Manzari
  • Mohammad Reza AbbaszadeganEmail author
Original Research



Gastric cancer (GC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related death in Iran. Genome stability is one of the main genetic issues in cancer biology which is governed via the different repair systems such as DNA mismatch repair (MMR). A clear correlation between MMR defects and tumor progression has been shown. Beside the genetic mutations, epigenetic changes also have a noticeable role in MMR defects.


Here, we assessed promoter methylation status and the level of hMLH1mRNA expression as the main component of MMR system in 51 GC patients using the methylation-specific PCR and real-time PCR, respectively. Moreover, we performed a promoter methylation study of the E-cadherin gene promoter.


It was observed that, 12 out of 39 cases (23.5 %) had hMLH1 overexpression. Hypermethylation of hMLH1 and E-cadherin promoter regions were observed in 25.5 and 36.4 %, respectively. Although, there was no significant correlation between hMLH1 mRNA expression and clinicopathological features, there are significant correlations between E-cadherin promoter methylation and tumor stage (p = 0.028) and location (p = 0.025). The rate of hMLH1 promoter methylation in this study was lower than that in the other population, showing the importance of the other mechanisms, in gastric tumorigenesis.


The results of this study indicate that DNA repair system is adversely affected by hypermethylation of hMLH1 in a fraction of gastric cancer patients. Additionally, E-cadherin hypermethylation seen in a subset of our gastric cancer patients is consistent with other reports showing correlation with aggressiveness and metastasis of gastric cancer.


Epigenetic Mismatch Repair System Expressional Analysis Methylation-Specific PCR Iran 



This work was supported by two grants from the Vice Chancellor for Research at Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, no. 85031 and no. 85366.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Meysam Moghbeli
    • 1
  • Omeed Moaven
    • 2
  • Bahram Memar
    • 3
  • Hamid Reza Raziei
    • 1
  • Azadeh Aarabi
    • 1
  • Ezzat Dadkhah
    • 1
    • 4
  • Mohammad Mahdi Forghanifard
    • 5
  • Fatemeh Manzari
    • 1
  • Mohammad Reza Abbaszadegan
    • 1
    • 6
    • 7
    Email author
  1. 1.Division of Human Genetics, Immunology Research Center, Avicenna Research InstituteMashhad University of Medical Sciences (MUMS)MashhadIran
  2. 2.Department of surgeryMassachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  3. 3.Department of PathologyOmeed Hospital, MUMSMashhadIran
  4. 4.School of Systems BiologyGeorge Mason UniversityFairfaxUSA
  5. 5.Department of Biology, Damghan BranchIslamic Azad UniversityDamghanIran
  6. 6.Medical Genetics Research CenterMedical School, MUMSMashhadIran
  7. 7.Avicenna Research InstituteMashhad University of Medical SciencesMashhadIran

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