Down-regulation of serum/glucocorticoid regulated kinase 1 in colorectal tumours is largely independent of promoter hypermethylation.
Lessi F., Beggs A., de Palo M., Anti M., Macarone Palmieri R., Francesconi S., Gomes V., Bevilacqua G., Tomlinson I., Segditsas S.
BACKGROUND: We have previously shown that serum/glucocorticoid regulated kinase 1 (SGK1) is down-regulated in colorectal cancers (CRC) with respect to normal tissue. As hyper-methylation of promoter regions is a well-known mechanism of gene silencing in cancer, we tested whether the SGK1 promoter region was methylated in colonic tumour samples. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated the methylation profile of the two CpG islands present in the promoter region of SGK1 in a panel of 5 colorectal cancer cell lines by sequencing clones of bisulphite-treated DNA samples. We further confirmed our findings in a panel of 10 normal and 10 tumour colonic tissue samples of human origin. We observed CpG methylation only in the smaller and more distal CpG island in the promoter region of SGK1 in both normal and tumour samples of colonic origin. We further identified a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP, rs1743963) which affects methylation of the corresponding CpG. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results show that even though partial methylation of the promoter region of SGK1 is present, this does not account for the different expression levels seen between normal and tumour tissue.