• basal cell carcinoma;
  • chromosomal imbalance;
  • classical comparative genomic hybridization;
  • skin cancer;
  • chromosomal gain/loss

Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) of the skin is considered to be the most common malignancy in people of European ancestry. It is often not clinically aggressive and has been regarded as genetically stable. However, histopathologic subtypes of BCC differ in their ability to invade surrounding tissues and recur. The aim of this work was to present a comprehensive study of chromosomal imbalances of cutaneous BCC and to correlate the findings with their histopathologic and clinical features. In all, 101 tumor samples were classified according to the current microscopic classification of BCC and then analyzed by comparative genomic hybridization (CGH). Over 60% of BCC were found to carry chromosomal imbalances – partial or whole chromosome gains and losses. Different subtypes of BCC presented common chromosomal alterations. No single chromosomal imbalance was found to be characteristic of a particular subtype of BCC, although the frequency of some chromosomal changes differed from one group to the other. The significance of chromosome 2 gains as a phenomenon that does not coexist with the losses in 9q is discussed.