• gastrointestinal stromal tumour;
  • c-kit gene mutation;
  • neurofibromatosis type 1;
  • NF1 gene mutation


Most sporadic gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GISTs) have somatic c-kit gene mutations that are considered to be causal. Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is caused by mutations of the NF1 gene and NF1 patients have an increased risk of developing GISTs. Since most neoplasms are considered to develop as a result of the combination of several gene mutations, these findings suggest that GISTs from NF1 patients might have somatic c-kit gene mutations and that sporadic GISTs from non-NF1 patients might have somatic NF1 gene mutations. The present study analysed 29 GISTs from seven NF1 patients for c-kit gene mutations and ten sporadic GISTs from ten non-NF1 patients for NF1 mutations. Exons 9, 11, 13, and 17 of the c-kit gene were amplified and directly sequenced after the extraction of genomic DNA from wax-embedded tissues from 26 GISTs from five NF1 patients. The whole coding region of the c-kit cDNA and the whole coding region of the NF1 cDNA were amplified and directly sequenced after RNA extraction and cDNA synthesis in three fresh GIST tissues from two NF1 patients and ten fresh GIST tissues from ten non-NF1 patients. Of the ten sporadic GISTs, eight had heterozygous mutations at exon 11, and one at exon 9, of c-kit. Heterozygous NF1 gene mutations were detected in GISTs from the two NF1 patients from whom fresh tissues were available. None of the 29 GISTs derived from NF1 patients had detectable c-kit gene mutations and none of the ten GISTs derived from non-NF1 patients had detectable NF1 mutations. These results suggest that the pathogenesis of GISTs in NF1 patients is different from that in non-NF1 patients. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.