Expression of the PTEN/FOXO3a/PLZF signalling pathway in pancreatic cancer and its significance in tumourigenesis and progression

SummaryPancreatic cancer (PC) is one of the most lethal gastrointestinal malignancies. The PTEN/AKT signalling pathway is closely related to the tumourigenesis and progression of PC. The downstream effectors, FOXO3a, PLZF and VEGF, are reported to be involved in angiogenesis, lymph node metastasis and poor survival in PC. By using tissue microarrays and immunohistochemistry, we found, that PTEN, FOXO3a and PLZF expression was significantly decreased in PC specimens compared with that in chronic pancreatitis (CP) specimens, while VEGF expression was significantly increased. Furthermore, the expression of PTEN was positively correlated with that of FOXO3a and PLZF but negatively correlated with that of VEGF. Our results suggest that the PTEN/FOXO3a/PLZF signalling pathway may negatively regulate VEGF expression in PC. Through clinical analysis of 69 PC patients, PTEN, FOXO3a and PLZF expression was found to be significantly decreased in specimens from PC patients with lymph node metastasis and poor prognosis, while VEGF expression was significantly increased. Taken together, these reaults suggest that the PTEN/FOXO3a/PLZF signalling pathway may be capable of inhibiting growth and metastasis in PC by regulating VEGF-mediated angiogenesis, which requires further in vivo and in vitro studies and can potentially be a therapeutic target for PC.
Source: Investigational New Drugs - Category: Drugs & Pharmacology Source Type: research

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