Correlation between the intercellular adhesion molecule (E-cadherin) and its associated protein (alpha-catenin) expression and metastasis in human digestive cancers

Shiozaki, H.; Gofuku, J.; Inoue, M.; Tamura, S.

Nihon Rinsho. Japanese Journal of Clinical Medicine 53(7): 1602-1606


ISSN/ISBN: 0047-1852
PMID: 7629995
Accession: 042688879

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The immunostaining (ABC method) of E-cadherin and alpha-catenin were performed on 46 esophageal cancers, 67 gastric cancers, 100 colon cancers. E-cadherin and alpha-catenin expression was evaluated as preserved and reduced according to the proportion of positive cells, respectively. The reduction of alpha-catenin expression was more significantly related to lymph node metastasis than that of E-cadherin. Furthermore, the frequency of hematogenous liver metastasis in preserved E-cadherin expression and reduced alpha-catenin expression was significantly higher than that in another combination of E-cadherin and alpha-catenin expression, in gastric and colon cancer. The reduction of alpha-catenin expression was associated with declined intercellular adhesiveness, which occasionally was not accompanied by reduction of E-cadherin. Therefore, the expression of alpha-catenin might more sensitively indicated cell-cell adhesion, predicting tumor metastasis.