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Pancreatology. 2008;8(4-5):488-97. doi: 10.1159/000151776. Epub 2008 Sep 3.

Enhanced ENA-78 and IL-8 expression in patients with malignant pancreatic diseases.

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Department of General, Visceral, Vascular and Paediatric Surgery, University of the Saarland, Homburg/Saar, Germany.



Pancreatic cancer is characterized by perineural invasion, early lymph node and liver metastases, and an extremely dismal prognosis. In the present study we aimed at investigating the expression profile of pro-inflammatory and angiogenic CXC chemokines as potential factors contributing to the aggressive biology of this gastrointestinal malignancy.


Protein expression profiles of the CXC chemokines growth-related oncogene alpha (GRO-alpha/CXCL1), epithelial cell-derived neutrophil-activating peptide-78 (ENA-78/CXCL5), granulocyte chemoattractant protein-2 (GCP-2/CXCL6), neutrophil-activating protein-2 (NAP-2/CXCL7), and interleukin-8 (IL-8/CXCL8) were assessed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in pancreatic carcinoma, cancer of the papilla of Vater, pancreatic cystadenoma, and chronic pancreatitis specimens.


IL-8 and ENA-78 protein expression was most pronounced in pancreatic carcinoma specimens, showing an 11-fold and 17-fold overexpression in comparison with non-affected neighbouring tissues, a 66-fold and 24-fold upregulation compared to pancreatic cystadenoma, and a 6-fold and 9-fold overexpression with respect to chronic pancreatitis, respectively (p < 0.05 between all groups). In addition, a close correlation between IL-8 and ENA-78 protein expression and advanced pancreatic carcinomas in relation to the T category was evident (p < 0.05).


Our results demonstrate that ELR+ CXC chemokines are differentially expressed in malignant and non-malignant human pancreatic specimens, suggesting a potential contribution of these chemokines to the pathogenesis of pancreatic carcinoma.

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