Expression of N-myc downstream regulated gene 1 (NDRG1)/Ca2+-associated protein 43 (Cap43) in cancer cells is a predictive marker of good or poor prognosis depending on tumor type. In this study, we examined whether NDRG1/ Cap43 is a marker of good or poor prognosis in gastric cancer patients, and whether it is associated with tumor stromal responses, including angiogenesis and macrophage infiltration. The expression levels of NDRG1/Cap43, the number of CD68- positive macrophages and the CD34-positive microvessel density were analyzed by immunohistochemistry in 129 gastric cancer patients, including 65 with the intestinal type and 64 with the diffuse type. The expression of NDRG1/Cap43 in the nucleus and the membrane was evaluated. Nuclear NDRG1/ Cap43 expression was found in 20/65 (30.8%) patients with the intestinal type and in 9/64 (14.1%) patients with the diffuse type of gastric cancer. Nuclear NDRG1/Cap43 expression was significantly associated with pathological stage in the intestinal type (P=0.002), but not in the diffuse type (P=0.039). Nuclear NDRG1/Cap43 expression was also closely associated with infiltrating macrophages (P=0.001) and tumor angiogenesis (P=0.001) in the intestinal type. Furthermore, nuclear NDRG1/Cap43 expression was associated with poor prognosis in both the intestinal (P=0.001) and the diffuse types of gastric cancer (P=0.047). By contrast, membranous NDRG1/ Cap43 expression was not associated with the overall survival of gastric cancer patients with either the intestinal or diffuse type of gastric cancer. The expression of NDRG1/cap43 in the nucleus may be a predictive biomarker for malignant progression in the intestinal type of gastric cancer, preferable to the expression of NDRG1/Cap43 in the membrane.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Immunology and Microbiology (miscellaneous)
- Cancer Research