Overexpression of the cell adhesion molecules DDR1, Claudin 3, and Ep-CAM in metaplastic ovarian epithelium and ovarian cancer.
ABSTRACT A better understanding of the molecular pathways underlying the development of epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is critical to identify ovarian tumor markers for use in diagnostic or therapeutic applications. The aims of this study were to integrate the results from 14 transcript profiling studies of EOC to identify novel biomarkers and to examine their expression in early and late stages of the disease.
A database incorporating genes identified as being highly up-regulated in each study was constructed. Candidate tumor markers were selected from genes that overlapped between studies and by evidence of surface membrane or secreted expression. The expression patterns of three integral membrane proteins, discoidin domain receptor 1 (DDR1), claudin 3 (CLDN3), and epithelial cell adhesion molecule, all of which are involved in cell adhesion, were evaluated in a cohort of 158 primary EOC using immunohistochemistry.
We confirmed that these genes are highly overexpressed in all histological subtypes of EOC compared with normal ovarian surface epithelium, identifying DDR1 and CLDN3 as new biomarkers of EOC. Furthermore, we determined that these genes are also expressed in ovarian epithelial inclusion cysts, a site of metaplastic changes within the normal ovary, in borderline tumors and in low-grade and stage cancer. A trend toward an association between low CLDN3 expression and poor patient outcome was also observed.
These results suggest that up-regulation of DDR1, CLDN3, and epithelial cell adhesion molecule are early events in the development of EOC and have potential application in the early detection of disease.
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ABSTRACT: The claudin (CLDN) genes encode a family of proteins involved in the formation and function of tight junctions. CLDN gene expression is frequently altered in several human cancers, and in particular, CLDN3 and CLDN4 are commonly overexpressed in ovarian cancer. However, the mechanisms leading to the deregulation of these genes in cancer remain unclear. In the present study, we have examined the CLDN3 promoter and have identified a minimal region containing an Sp1 site crucial for its activity. In addition, we find that the CLDN3 promoter is regulated through epigenetic processes. Cells that express high levels of CLDN3 exhibit low DNA methylation and high histone H3 acetylation of the critical CLDN3 promoter region, and the reverse is observed in cells that do not express this gene. CLDN3-negative cells can be induced to express CLDN3 through treatment with DNA methyltransferase or histone deacetylase inhibitors. Interestingly, in vitro binding experiments, as well as chip assays show that Sp1 binds the unmethylated promoter much more efficiently, providing a mechanism for CLDN3 silencing in non-expressing cells. Finally, siRNA-mediated knockdown of Sp1 led to a significant decrease of CLDN3 expression at both the mRNA and protein levels, demonstrating a crucial role for this transcription factor in the regulation of CLDN3. Our data provide a basis for CLDN3 expression in ovarian cancer cells, as well as a mechanism for the silencing of this promoter in tumors lacking expression of claudin-3.Cancer biology & therapy 12/2007; 6(11):1733-42. · 2.64 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Ovarian epithelial cancer (OEC) usually presents in the later stages of the disease. Factors, especially those associated with cell-cycle genes, affecting the genesis and tumour progression for ovarian cancer are largely unknown. We hypothesized that over-expressed transcription factors (TFs), as well as those that are driving the expression of the OEC over-expressed genes, could be the key for OEC genesis and potentially useful tissue and serum markers for malignancy associated with OEC. Using a combination of computational (selection of candidate TF markers and malignancy prediction) and experimental approaches (tissue microarray and western blotting on patient samples) we identified and evaluated E2F5 transcription factor involved in cell proliferation, as a promising candidate regulatory target in early stage disease. Our hypothesis was supported by our tissue array experiments that showed E2F5 expression only in OEC samples but not in normal and benign tissues, and by significantly positively biased expression in serum samples done using western blotting studies. Analysis of clinical cases shows that of the E2F5 status is characteristic for a different population group than one covered by CA125, a conventional OEC biomarker. E2F5 used in different combinations with CA125 for distinguishing malignant cyst from benign cyst shows that the presence of CA125 or E2F5 increases sensitivity of OEC detection to 97.9% (an increase from 87.5% if only CA125 is used) and, more importantly, the presence of both CA125 and E2F5 increases specificity of OEC to 72.5% (an increase from 55% if only CA125 is used). This significantly improved accuracy suggests possibility of an improved diagnostics of OEC. Furthermore, detection of malignancy status in 86 cases (38 benign, 48 early and late OEC) shows that the use of E2F5 status in combination with other clinical characteristics allows for an improved detection of malignant cases with sensitivity, specificity, F-measure and accuracy of 97.92%, 97.37%, 97.92% and 97.67%, respectively. Overall, our findings, in addition to opening a realistic possibility for improved OEC diagnosis, provide an indirect evidence that a cell-cycle regulatory protein E2F5 might play a significant role in OEC pathogenesis.BMC Cancer 02/2010; 10:64. · 3.01 Impact Factor
Article: Identification of Receptor Tyrosine Kinase, Discoidin Domain Receptor 1 (DDR1), as a Potential Biomarker for Serous Ovarian Cancer.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Ovarian cancer, one of the most common gynecological malignancies, has an aggressive phenotype. It is necessary to develop novel and more effective treatment strategies against advanced disease. Protein tyrosine kinases (PTKs) play an important role in the signal transduction pathways involved in tumorigenesis, and represent potential targets for anticancer therapies. In this study, we performed cDNA subtraction following polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using degenerate oligonucleotide primers to identify specifically overexpressed PTKs in ovarian cancer. Three PTKs, janus kinase 1, insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor, and discoidin domain receptor 1 (DDR1), were identified and only DDR1 was overexpressed in all ovarian cancer tissues examined for the validation by quantitative real-time PCR. The DDR1 protein was expressed in 63% (42/67) of serous ovarian cancer tissue, whereas it was undetectable in normal ovarian surface epithelium. DDR1 was expressed significantly more frequently in high-grade (79%) and advanced stage (77%) tumors compared to low-grade (50%) and early stage (43%) tumors. The expression of the DDR1 protein significantly correlated with poor disease-free survival. Although its functional role and clinical utility remain to be examined in future studies, our results suggest that the expression of DDR1 may serve as both a potential biomarker and a molecular target for advanced ovarian cancer.International Journal of Molecular Sciences 01/2011; 12(2):971-82. · 2.60 Impact Factor