Alternative exon-specific PCR method for the analysis of human CD44 isoform expression

Mariano Sánchez Lockhart, María Jose Gravisaco, Claudia Mongini, Claudia Waldner, Elida Alvarez, Silvia Elvira Hajos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


CD44 is a widely expressed cell-surface trans-membrane glycoprotein involved in diverse adhesive processes. Its isoforms have been implicated in tumor progression and are considered a promising marker for evaluation of the metastatic potential of various tumors. Several methods have been described for the analysis of CD44 isoforms in tumor cells, including immuno-histochemistry, RT-PCR followed by hybridization and nested RT-PCR. We describe an alternative nested PCR for the analysis of CD44 isoform expression in various malignancies. Total RNA was isolated from various shock-frozen tissues from human tumors, reverse-transcribed and PCR-amplified using CD44-specific primers. Reverse-transcription was performed by two different methods, either using Tth-polymerase or MMLV-RT. Exon-specific amplification was then carried out using specific primers for each variable exon. Amplification products were assayed by agarose gel electrophoresis. Comparison of the patterns obtained from the first amplification and from the exon-specific amplification allowed to identify exons expressed by tumor tissues, as well as the genomic organization of CD44 isoforms. The method developed proved to be sensitive, reliable and inexpensive in comparison with other methods. It can be performed even in solid tumors and for numerous samples, and is suitable for laboratories with limited resources.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)219-224
Number of pages6
JournalOncology reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1999


  • Adhesion molecules
  • Cd44 isoforms
  • Human tissue
  • RT-PCR
  • Tumor cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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