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Genomics. 2002 May;79(5):703-10.

Identification of EPSTI1, a novel gene induced by epithelial-stromal interaction in human breast cancer.

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Structural Cell Biology Unit, Department of Medical Anatomy A, the Panum Institute, University of Copenhagen, Blegdamsvej 3, DK-2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark.


During growth, invasion, and metastasis, tumor cells interact extensively with the surrounding stroma. To identify genes that are upregulated during this process, we compared mRNA pooled from tumor cells and fibroblasts cultured separately to mRNA from cells in coculture. Using differential display (DD), a transcript representing a novel gene, designated epithelial-stromal interaction 1 (breast) (EPSTI1), was identified. EPSTI1 showed no homology to any known gene, but matched a cluster of expressed-sequence tags (ESTs). The full-length cDNA of 1508 bp was generated by 5'-RACE, included an open reading frame (ORF) encoding a putative 307-amino-acid protein, and mapped to chromosome 13q13.3. EPSTI1 was highly upregulated in invasive breast carcinomas compared with normal breast. In a tissue mRNA panel the most prominent expression of EPSTI1 was found in placenta. Thus, EPSTI1 is a novel human gene expressed in tissues characterized by extensive epithelial-stromal interaction, and expression of this gene may be a crucial event in invasion and metastasis of cancer.

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