Send to

Choose Destination
Anticancer Res. 1999 Jan-Feb;19(1A):481-6.

Expression of P185erbB-2, P160erbB-3, P180erbB-4, and heregulin alpha in human normal bronchial epithelial and lung cancer cell lines.

Author information

National Research Council Canada, Biotechnology Research Institute, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


The receptors erbB-3 and erbB-4 are members of the type 1 tyrosine kinase receptor family which also comprises epidermal growth factor receptor (EGF-R) and erbB-2. ErbB-3 and erbB-4 receptors are known to bind a family of related proteins termed heregulins. In this study, we report differential expression of P185erbB-2, P160erbB-3 and P180erbB-4, and their ligand heregulin alpha, in normal bronchial epithelial, and non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) cell lines. Expression of P185erbB-2 and P160erbB-3 vary from very low to a high level in NSCLC cell lines and a low level in normal bronchial cells. In contrast, P180erbB-4 was detected only in NSCLC cell lines but not in normal bronchial cells. Heregulin alpha is expressed at intermediate levels in the normal and cancer cell lines studied. Immunoprecipitation, using antibodies to erbB-2, erbB-3 or erbB-4 receptors, coupled to phosphotyrosine Western blot analysis indicates that these three receptors are constitutively tyrosine phosphorylated in lung cancer cell lines, but only erbB-2 and erbB-3 are autophosphorylated in normal cells. These data suggest that constitutive activation of erbB-2, erbB-3 and erbB-4 receptors could be induced by heregulin alpha via an autocrine loop mechanism, and that the active forms of erbB-4 may cooperate with the other members of the EGF-receptor family in human lung carcinogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center