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Mol Med Rep. 2014 Sep;10(3):1513-8. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2014.2338. Epub 2014 Jun 17.

Podoplanin‑positive cancer cells at the edge of esophageal squamous cell carcinomas are involved in invasion.

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Vascular Biology Research Institute, Guangdong Pharmaceutical University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510006, P.R. China.
State Key Laboratory of Oncology in Southern China, Sun Yat‑Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510060, P.R. China.
Department of Oncology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan 450052, P.R. China.
Department of Clinical Oncology, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong, SAR, P.R. China.


Podoplanin (PDPN) is a well established lymphatic endothelial marker and has frequently been observed in cancer cells at the edge of cancer masses. Previous studies investigating the association between PDPN expression and patient prognosis have had contradictory results. In the present study, it was hypothesized that the different locations of PDPN‑positive cells may explain these varying results. The present study aimed to focus on PDPN expression at the edge of esophageal cancer cell nests. In order to analyze the clinical significance of this PDPN expression, immunohistochemistry was performed using esophageal cancer tissue microarrays. PDPN expression at the edge of the cancer cell nest was found to be significantly associated with invasion (P<0.05) and poor prognosis (P<0.001) in patients with cancer. To further investigate the role of PDPN expression in cancer cells, the PDPN gene was cloned and transfected into esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cell lines. PDPN expression was also knocked down using small interfering RNA. PDPN‑positive cancer cells were found to exhibit invasion characteristics. Thus, PDPN expression at the edge of a cancer cell nest may indicate invasion and represent a poor prognostic factor for ESCCs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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