EMP3 as a tumor suppressor gene for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
ABSTRACT EMP3, epithelial membrane protein 3, was recently reported to be a tumor suppressor gene in neuroblastomas and gliomas. We found that EMP3 was commonly repressed in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cell lines by oligonucleotide microarrays. Its overexpression in ESCC cell lines caused growth inhibition with morphological changes and TERT repression. In addition to promoter hypermethylation, TSA caused repression of EMP3, indicating the involvement of histone deacetylase-regulated repressors. The post-recurrent survival after radical surgery was poorer in ESCC patients with lower EMP3 expression. We propose that EMP3 may be a tumor suppressor gene at the late step of ESCC carcinogenesis.