Disruption of the architectural factor HMGI-C: DNA-binding AT hook motifs fused in lipomas to distinct transcriptional regulatory domains.
Lipomas are one of the most common mesenchymal neoplasms in humans. They are characterized by consistent cytogenetic aberrations involving chromosome 12 in bands q14-15. Interestingly, this region is also the site of rearrangement for other mesenchymally derived tumors. This study demonstrates that HMGI-C, an architectural factor that functions in transcriptional regulation, has been disrupted by rearrangement at the 12q14-15 chromosomal breakpoint in lipomas. Chimeric transcripts were isolated from two lipomas in which HMGI-C DNA-binding domains (AT hook motifs) are fused to either a LIM or an acidic transactivation domain. These results, identifying a gene rearranged in a benign neoplastic process that does not proceed to a malignancy, suggest a role for HMGI-C in adipogenesis and mesenchyme differentiation.