Background: Different DNA aberrations processes can cause colorectal cancer (CRC). Herein, we conducted a comprehensive molecular characterization of 27 CRCs from Iranian patients. Materials and Methods: Array CGH was performed. The MSI phenotype and the methylation status of 15 genes was established using MSP. The CGH data was compared to two established lists of 41 and 68 cancer genes, respectively, and to CGH data from African Americans. A maximum parsimony cladogram based on global aberrations was established. Results: The number of aberrations seem to depend on the MSI status. MSI-H tumors displayed the lowest number of aberrations. MSP revealed that most markers were methylated, except RNF182 gene. P16 and MLH1 genes were primarily methylated in MSI-H tumors. Seven markers with moderate to high frequency of methylation (SYNE1, MMP2, CD109, EVL, RET, LGR and PTPRD) had very low levels of chromosomal aberrations. All chromosomes were targeted by aberrations with deletions more frequent than amplifications. The most amplified markers were CD248, ERCC6, ERGIC3, GNAS, MMP2, NF1, P2RX7, SFRS6, SLC29A1 and TBX22. Most deletions were noted for ADAM29, CHL1, CSMD3, FBXW7, GALNS, MMP2, NF1, PRKD1, SMAD4 and TP53. Aberrations targeting chromosome X were primarily amplifications in male patients and deletions in female patients. A finding similar to what we reported for African American CRC patients. Conclusion: This first comprehensive analysis of CRC Iranian tumors reveals a high MSI rate. The MSI tumors displayed the lowest level of chromosomal aberrations but high frequency of methylation. The MSI-L were predominantly targeted with chromosomal instability in a way similar to the MSS tumors. The global chromosomal aberration profiles showed many similarities with other populations but also differences that might allow a better understanding of CRC's clinico-pathological specifics in this population.
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