Malignant transformation is thought to be associated with changes in the expression of a number of genes, and this alteration in gene expression is felt to be critical to the development of the malignant phenotype. Sarcomas represent a diverse group of tumors derived from cells of mesenchymal origin. Marked heterogeneity exists in the biological behavior of sarcomas, even within histologic subtypes of sarcomas. In an effort to better understand the biology of liposarcomas, gene expression in normal adipose tissue, lipomas, and liposarcomas was examined using the Affymetrix® microarray technology. Differences in gene expression were quantified as the fold change in gene expression among the sample sets. Differences in gene expression among normal adipose tissue, lipomas, and liposarcomas were observed. In addition, genes expressed uniquely in liposarcoma among these and 18 other tissue sample sets were identified. Gene sets were devised that allowed the separation of liposarcomas from other samples, and most normal adipose tissue from most lipomas using the Eisen clustering software "Cluster." We conclude that differences in gene expression can be identified among different tumors derived from the adipocyte series. Such differences in gene expression may help differentiate among subtypes of sarcomas, and may also yield clues to the pathophysiology of this heterogeneous group of tumors.
- Cancer/testis antigen
- Gene expression