This study was designed to determine whether changes in p27(Kip1) expression are involved in human hepatocarcinogenesis. We examined the p27(Kip1) mRNA expression in hepatocellular carcinomas and surrounding non-cancerous liver tissue samples from 21 patients using a reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction assay. The mean p27(Kip1) mRNA expression levels (ratio of p27(Kip1)/β-actin mRNA) were significantly lower in hepatocellular carcinomas than in non-cancerous liver tissues (0.49±0.24 versus 0.57±0.22, P<0.05). p27(Kip1) mRNA expression was reduced in 11 (52%) of the 21 hepatocellular carcinomas when compared with the surrounding non-cancerous liver tissues. These findings suggest that reduced p27(Kip1) expression may be at least partly responsible for human hepatocarcinogenesis. Copyright (C) 1998 Elsevier Science Ireland Ltd.
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