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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(3), 4783-4792; doi:10.3390/ijms14034783
Article

Analysis of Epithelial Growth Factor-Receptor (EGFR) Phosphorylation in Uterine Smooth Muscle Tumors: Correlation to Mucin-1 and Galectin-3 Expression

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Received: 8 January 2013; in revised form: 8 February 2013 / Accepted: 19 February 2013 / Published: 28 February 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Signalling Molecules and Signal Transduction in Cells)
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Abstract: Uterine fibroids are the commonest uterine benign tumors. A potential mechanism of malignant transformation from leiomyomas to leiomyosarcomas has been described. Tyrosine phosphorylation is a key mechanism that controls biological functions, such as proliferation and cell differentiation. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the phosphorylation of epithelial growth factor-receptor (EGFR) in normal myometrium, uterine myomas and uterine leiomyosarcomas. Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue samples from normal myometrium, leiomyomas and leiomyosarcomas were studied. Samples were immunohistochemically (IHC) assessed using the anti-EGFR phosphorylation of Y845 (pEGFR-Y845) and anti-pEGFR-Y1173 phosphorylation-specific antibodies. IHC staining was evaluated using a semiquantitative score. The expression of pEGFR-Y845 was significantly upregulated in leiomyosarcomas (p < 0.001) compared to leiomyomas and normal myometrium. In contrast, pEGFR-Y1173 did not differ significantly between the three groups of the study. Correlation analysis revealed an overall positive correlation between pEGFR Y845 and mucin 1 (MUC1). Further subgroup analysis within the tumoral group (myomas and leiomyosarcomas) revealed an additional negative correlation between pEGFR Y845 and galectin-3 (gal-3) staining. On the contrary no significant correlation was noted within the non-tumoral group. An upregulated EGFR phosphorylation of Y845 in leiomyosarcomas compared to leiomyomas implicates EGFR activation at this special receptor site. Due to these pEGFR-Y845 variations, it can be postulated that MUC1 interacts with it, whereas gal-3 seems to be cleaved from Y845 phosphorylated EGFR. Further research on this field could focus on differences in EGFR pathways as a potentially advantageous diagnostic tool for investigation of benign and malignant signal transduction processes.
Keywords: myometrium; leiomyoma; leiomyosarcoma; phosphorylation; EGFR; tyrosine kinase myometrium; leiomyoma; leiomyosarcoma; phosphorylation; EGFR; tyrosine kinase
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Weissenbacher, T.; Vrekoussis, T.; Roeder, D.; Makrigiannakis, A.; Mayr, D.; Ditsch, N.; Friese, K.; Jeschke, U.; Dian, D. Analysis of Epithelial Growth Factor-Receptor (EGFR) Phosphorylation in Uterine Smooth Muscle Tumors: Correlation to Mucin-1 and Galectin-3 Expression. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 4783-4792.

AMA Style

Weissenbacher T, Vrekoussis T, Roeder D, Makrigiannakis A, Mayr D, Ditsch N, Friese K, Jeschke U, Dian D. Analysis of Epithelial Growth Factor-Receptor (EGFR) Phosphorylation in Uterine Smooth Muscle Tumors: Correlation to Mucin-1 and Galectin-3 Expression. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2013; 14(3):4783-4792.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Weissenbacher, Tobias; Vrekoussis, Thomas; Roeder, David; Makrigiannakis, Antonis; Mayr, Doris; Ditsch, Nina; Friese, Klaus; Jeschke, Udo; Dian, Darius. 2013. "Analysis of Epithelial Growth Factor-Receptor (EGFR) Phosphorylation in Uterine Smooth Muscle Tumors: Correlation to Mucin-1 and Galectin-3 Expression." Int. J. Mol. Sci. 14, no. 3: 4783-4792.


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