RETROTRANSPOSABLE ACTIVATION OF ALU ELEMENTS, GENOMIC INSTABILITY AND CARCINOGENESIS
Alu elements are the most abundant short interspersed repetitive elements (SINEs). Providing insertion mutations or hot spots for unequal homologous recombination (HR), Alus contribute to varieties of genomic diseases. With probes sharing significant similarity with Alus, we performed in situ hybridization to analyze paraffin sections of hepatoma and found that abundance of Alu RNA was notably higher in hepatoma than in adjacent tissues. Based on observations of others laboratories, we speculate that retrotransposable activation of Alu elements might cause genomic instability during carcinogenesis.
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