p73 overexpression and nuclear accumulation in hepatitis C virus-associated hepatocellular carcinoma

Romy Zemel, Claud Koren, Larisa Bachmatove, Smadar Avigad, Ella Kaganovsky, Elimelech Okon, Ziv Ben-Ari, Franklin Grief, Merav Ben-Yehoyada, Yosef Shaul, Ran Tur-Kaspa*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


p73 is the first identified homolog of p53, but its function has not been established. Our study investigated the expression of p73 in liver tissue of patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV)-associated hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). RT-PCR was performed on RNA extracted from tumorous and nontumorous liver tissue of HCV-associated HCC, and control tissue and the cDNA were sequenced. Anti-p73 polyclonal antibodies were used for protein analysis and immunohistochemistry, and patients' sera were analyzed for anti-p73 antibodies by radioimmunoassay. Analysis of the p53 gene was performed by SSCP and RFLP-PCR. The p73 mRNA and protein were highly expressed and accumulated in HCC tissues. Immunohistochemical studies revealed significant immunoreactivity in the nuclei of HCC cells. No mutations were detected in the p73 gene or in p53, and no loss of heterozygosity of the p53 gene was found. Anti-p73 antibodies were detected in sera of HCC patients, but were not significantly different from that occurring in non-HCV or non-HCC patients. In conclusion, p73 protein is overexpressed and accumulates in the nuclei of HCV-associated HCCs and may play a role in HCC development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)716-722
Number of pages7
JournalDigestive Diseases and Sciences
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2002


FundersFunder number
Office of the Chief Scientist, Ministry of Health


    • Hepatitis C
    • Hepatocellular carinoma
    • p53
    • p73


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