ABSTRACT: We surveyed the expression of 557 cancer-related genes in 15 cases of well-differentiated OSCC by cDNA microarray analysis. To identify potential biomarkers for lymph node metastasis, all microarray data were compared by the Mann-Whitney test and the significance analysis of microarrays between OSCCs with and those without lymph node metastasis. The tissues of OSCCs with lymph node metastasis exhibited increased expression levels of MMP-1, MMP-3, uPA, integrin-alpha3, paxillin, tenascin C and IL-6 transcripts. All of these genes were included in common clusters on the Cluster/TreeView analysis, implying that functional gene groups of proteolytic enzymes and integrin-related molecules are involved in cervical lymph node metastasis. The results of RTQ-PCR for differentially expressed genes were in accord with those of cDNA microarray analyses, suggesting that the data obtained by microarray gene expression analyses were valid. Consistent with cooperative expression patterns, immunohistochemical analyses demonstrated that products of MMP-1, MMP-3 and uPA were colocalized to components of the neoplastic stroma, particularly mononuclear inflammatory cells with well-developed eosinophilic cytoplasm. Our results suggest that expression levels of molecules involved in tissue remodeling and cell-ECM adhesion, especially MMP-1 and integrin-alpha3, can provide an accurate biomarker system for predicting the risk of cervical lymph node metastasis in OSCC.
International Journal of Cancer 10/2003; 106(5):683-9. · 5.44 Impact Factor