The expression of c-myc and c-H-ras in hyperplastic nodules and hepatocellular carcinomas induced in male B6C3F1 mice after chronic administration of dichloroacetate (DCA) and trichloroacetate (TCA) was studied using in situ hybridization. Expression of c-myc and c-H-ras mRNA was increased in both nodules and carcinomas relative to surrounding tissue and tissues obtained from control animals. Myc expression was similar in hyperplastic nodules and carcinomas induced by DCA, but was significantly higher in TCA-induced carcinomas than in hyperplastic nodules and carcinomas produced by DCA. In carcinomas from animals whose TCA treatment was suspended at 37 weeks, c-myc expression remained high relative to control and surrounding liver tissue at 52 weeks. In contrast, the expression of c-H-ras was consistently elevated in carcinomas from both treatments relative to hyperplastic nodules and non-tumor tissue. Within carcinomas from both treatments, focal areas could be located which expressed even higher levels of c-myc. This heterogeneity was not observed in carcinomas hybridized to c-H-ras-probes. These data suggest that elevated expression of c-H-ras and c-myc might play an important role in the development of hepatic tumors in B6C3F1 mice. Elevated expression of c-H-ras was closely associated with malignancy. Increased c-myc expression does not seem necessary for progression to the malignant state. On the other hand, the increased expression of c-myc appears related to the earlier progression of TCA-induced tumors to the malignant state.
- B6C3F1 mice
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