Proepithelin encourages cell growth and migration in prostate cancer

Feb 26, 2009

Researchers from Thomas Jefferson University have identified a protein that appears to play a significant role in the growth and migration of prostate cancer cells, especially androgen-independent prostate cancer cells. The study was published in the American Journal of Pathology.

They also found that prostate cancer cells express more of the protein when compared to normal prostate cells, according to Andrea Morrione, Ph.D., an associate professor and director of Urology Research for the Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson.

Dr. Morrione conducted the study with Leonard Gomella, M.D., chairman of the department of Urology, Raffaele Baffa, M.D., an associate professor in the department of Urology, and Renato V. Iozzo, M.D., Ph.D., professor in the department of Pathology, Anatomy and Cell Biology.

Proepithelin is a growth factor that promotes cell cycle progression and cell growth in many cellular systems. According to Dr. Morrione, the overexpression of proepithelin by prostate cancer cells may prove to be a useful clinical marker to diagnose prostate cancer.

The presence of proepithelin also encourages cell migration, which is necessary for tumor metastasis. Thus, it may serve as a marker for metastasis.

Proepithelin has previously been shown to play a role in the formation of bladder cancer, and its overexpression is related to an aggressive form of breast cancer according to Dr. Morrione. It also has been shown to play a role in many other cancers, including glioblastomas, multiple myeloma, renal cell carcinoma, gastric cancer and ovarian cancer.

"There are two possible implications of our findings," Dr. Morrione said. "First, proepithelin could be a therapeutic target since it is overexpressed in prostate cancers.

Second, the overexpression of proepithelin could serve as a biomarker and be a diagnostic tool for prostate cancer."

Although localized prostate cancers are potentially curable by surgery and/or radiation therapy, there is no uniform effective treatment for hormone-refractory prostate cancer. There are no reliable prognostic markers to identify which of patients are likely to progress to metastatic disease.

Source: Thomas Jefferson University

Explore further: Breast cancer is not one disease, experts say

Related Stories

Potential new breathalyzer for lung cancer screening

Feb 18, 2015

Researchers from Chongqing University in China have developed a high sensitive fluorescence-based sensor device that can rapidly identify cancer related volatile organic compounds—biomarkers found exclusively in the exhaled ...

Johnson & Johnson tops 4Q earnings expectations

Jan 20, 2015

The strong dollar and stiff competition for some products squeezed Johnson & Johnson in the fourth quarter and it missed Wall Street expectations for revenue, triggering a rare sell-off of its shares.

Recommended for you

Breast cancer is not one disease, experts say

10 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Breast cancer isn't the same for every woman, even at the cellular level, according to a new statement from four major medical groups focused on the disease.

Teens with breast lumps may be able to avoid invasive biopsy

12 hours ago

If a lump is found in the breast of an adolescent girl, she often will undergo an excisional biopsy. However, breast cancer is rare in adolescents, and the vast majority of teenage breast lumps turn out to be benign masses ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.