We have found highly predictable patterns of protooncogene expression in cell lines and tumor tissue of neuroblastoma (NB), a tumor of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). These patterns make it possible to recognize two different genetically definable subgroups among histopathologically indistinguishable tumors. Additionally, we have identified a difference in neurotransmitter biosynthetic enzyme activity in these two subgroups of NB. The patterns of protooncogene expression and neurotransmitter biosynthetic enzymes suggests that these tumors arise in different cells of the PNS.
C J Thiele, C McKeon, T J Triche, R A Ross, C P Reynolds, M A Israel