Differences in the expression of epithelial-mesenchymal transition related molecules between primary tumors and pulmonary metastatic tumors in colorectal cancer

Hidenori Kouso, Tokujiro Yano, Riichiroh Maruyama, Yasunori Shikada, Tatsuro Okamoto, Akira Haro, Yoshihiro Kakeji, Yoshihiko Maehara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a key event in cancer metastasis. This study immunohistochemically examined the expression of EMT-related molecules in both primary colorectal cancer and pulmonary metastases, and analyzed the expression pattern. Methods: Ten patients with colorectal cancer that underwent surgical resections for both the primary tumor and metastatic pulmonary tumors were included. The expression status of EMT-related molecules was examined using immunohistochemical staining. Results: Nine of the 10 cases maintained the expression of both E-cadherin and β-catenin in the primary site. The expression of E-cadherin and β-catenin in the pulmonary metastatic site was preserved in 10 and 12 out of 15 metastatic lesions, respectively. The EMT-related transcription factor, Twist, was positively expressed in all 10 cases, Smad interacting protein 1 (Sip1) in 9, Snail in 4 and Slug in 3 of the primary sites. On the other hand, staining for Twist, Sip1 and Snail at the metastatic pulmonary site, was negative in all 10 cases. Conclusion: The expression of EMT-related transcription factors in metastatic pulmonary tumors from colorectal cancer decreased in comparison to the primary tumors. These findings suggested that the expression status of EMT-related transcription factors might play an important role in the implantation of metastatic foci.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-80
Number of pages8
JournalSurgery today
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2013


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery

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