The steady-state levels of mRNA for the poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase (PARP), c-myc, p53, and histone H3 genes were investigated in 31 high-grade B-cell lymphomas by northern blot analysis. The panel included 15 nodal large B-cell lymphomas, nine mediastinal large B-cell lymphomas, and seven sporadic Burkitt's lymphomas. The PARP mRNA level was significantly higher in lymphomas than in control tissues and corresponded with the amount of PARP protein, as assessed by immunoblot analysis in six samples. The level of PARP mRNA was positively correlated with that of p53 mRNA. No correlation was found between the mRNA expression levels of PARP and histone H3, suggesting that PARP expression levels are independent of the proliferation rate of neoplastic cells. In this setting, the strong correlation between PARP and p53 suggests that the high expression of PARP may be associated with ongoing DNA damage in high-grade lymphomas.
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