Recent studies have shown that the deletion of chromosome 3p or the loss of DNA sequences at 3p is generally associated with the development of re-nal cell carcinoma (RCC). However, chromosome analysis of some papil-lary RCCs suggested that this type of tumor differs genotypically from the most common nonpapillary RCCs. Therefore, by using cytogenetic and molecular genetic approaches, we ex-amined human papillary and nonpapil-lary RCCs for the loss of heterozygosity or homozygosity at the short armof chromosome 3. The constitutional heterozygosity for the DNF15S2 locus and for one allele of the c-erbAβ and the c-raf-1 proto-oncogenes was lost in nonpapillary RCCs, where as both al-leles were retained in each papillary RCC analyzed. We conclude that the loss of DNA sequences at the chromo-some 3p region is a genomic change occurring consistently in nonpapillary RCCs, but never occurring in papillary RCCs. [J Natl Cancer Inst 81:527-530,1989]

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