Reduced expression of epidermal growth factor receptor related protein in gastric cancer

Moon, W. S.; Tarnawski, A. S.; Chai, J.; Yang, J. I.; Majumdar, A. P. N.
February 2005
Gut;Feb2005, Vol. 54 Issue 2, p201
Academic Journal
Objectives: The recently cloned epidermal growth factor receptor related protein (ERRP) has been proposed to be a negative regulator of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). Because of the causal involvement of EGFR and its ligands in gastric cancer growth, we investigated expression of ERRP and cell proliferation in human gastric cancer. Methods: We examined ERRP expression and localisation in surgical specimens of gastric cancers from 47 patients versus non-malignant gastric mucosa and determined their relationship to cell proliferation and differentiation. We also examined expression of ERRP by western blotting in three different gastric cancer cell lines. To further determine the functional properties of ERRP, we examined the effect of ERRP on epidermal growth factor (EGF) induced EGFR phosphorylation essential for its activation in MKN-28 gastric cancer cells. Results: ERRP expression was dramatically reduced in gastric cancers (34% of all specimens positive) compared with non-malignant gastric mucosa (66% of specimens positive). Expression of ERRP in cancer cells inversely correlated with cell proliferation and grade of malignancy. Cell lines derived from metastatic gastric cancers had reduced ERR!' expression compared with cell lines derived from a non-metastatic cancer. Exogenous ERRP protein markedly inhibited EGF induced EGFR phosphorylation in gastric cancer cells providing a novel molecular mechanism of its action. Conclusions: Our data indicate that downregulation of ERRP could play an important role in gastric cancer differentiation and progression. ERR!' is a negative regulator of tumour cell proliferation and may exert its inhibitory effect, in part, by attenuating EGFR activation.


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