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Clin Exp Metastasis. 2014 Jan;31(1):15-24. doi: 10.1007/s10585-013-9605-6. Epub 2013 Jul 23.

Mapping protein signal pathway interaction in sarcoma bone metastasis: linkage between rank, metalloproteinases turnover and growth factor signaling pathways.

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Laboratory of Experimental Oncology, Rizzoli Orthopedic Institute, Via di Barbiano 1/10, 40136, Bologna, Italy.


We applied reverse phase protein microarrays technology to map signal pathway interactions in a discovery set of 34 soft tissue sarcoma (STS) bone metastases compared to healthy bone. Proteins associated with matrix remodeling (MMP), adhesion (FAK Y576/577, Syndecan-1), and growth/survival (IGF1R Y1135/1136, PI3K, EGFR) were elevated in metastasis compared to normal bone. Linkage between Syndecan-1, FAK Y576/577, Shc Y317, and EGFR, IGF Y1135/1136, PI3K/AKT was a prominent feature of STS bone metastasis. Elevated linkage between RANKL and 4EBP1 T37/46, EGFR, IGF1R Y1135/1136, Src Y41, Shc Y317, PI3Kp110γ was associated with short survival. Finally, we tested the hypothesis that signal pathway proteins augmented in the STS bone metastasis may provide clues to understand the subset of primary STS that metastasize. The most representative molecules identified in the discovery set were validated on an independent series of 82 primary STS by immunohistochemistry applied to a tissue microarray. The goal was to correlate the molecular profile in the primary tumors with a higher likelihood of metastasis. Elevation of activated kinase substrate endpoints IRS1 S612, 4EBP1 T37/46, FAK Y576/577 and loss of Fibronectin, were associated with a higher likelihood of metastases. These data indicate that the linkage between matrix remodeling, adhesion, and growth signaling may drive STS metastasis and can be the basis for prognostic and therapeutic strategies.

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