Clinical Research Papers:

The role of E-cadherin and β-catenin in laryngeal cancer

Carlos Eduardo Nardi _, Rogério Aparecido Dedivitis, Ricardo Camillo de Almeida, Leandro Luongo de Matos and Claudio Roberto Cernea

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:30199-30209. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.25680

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Carlos Eduardo Nardi1, Rogério Aparecido Dedivitis1, Ricardo Camillo de Almeida2, Leandro Luongo de Matos3 and Claudio Roberto Cernea4

1Department of Head and Neck Surgery, Hospital das Clínicas, São Paulo School of Medicine, São Paulo, Brazil

2Pathologist, Clínica Diagnos, Santos, Brazil

3Department of Head and Neck Surgery, São Paulo School of Medicine, Assistant, Instituto do Câncer do Estado de São Paulo, ICESP (São Paulo State Cancer Institute), São Paulo, Brazil

4Department of Head and Neck Surgery, São Paulo School of Medicine, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

Correspondence to:

Carlos Eduardo Nardi, email: nardi.cem@gmail.com

Keywords: cadherins; beta-catenin; laryngectomy; laryngeal neoplasms; carcinoma

Received: October 18, 2017     Accepted: June 04, 2018     Published: July 10, 2018


Epithelial cadherins with catenins form the E-cadherin-catenin complex that acts on cell-to-cell adhesion. The loss of these complex lead to the reduction or absence of epithelial cadherin expression in the cell membrane, cytoplasmic accumulation of β-catenin and its translocation to the nucleus, contributing to carcinogenic events. The objective of this study was to evaluate the expression of epithelial cadherin and β-catenin in patients with laryngeal tumor. A retrospective study of 52 patients with glottic or supraglottic squamous cell carcinoma was conducted and evaluated according to the tumor site, histological differentiation, TNM stage, survival analysis and compared with the immunohistochemical expression of epithelial cadherin and β-catenin. We observed statistically significant association between the epithelial cadherin expression reduction and supraglottic localization of the lesion, the presence of cervical metastasis, poorly differentiated tumors and locally advanced tumors when in glottic topography. Related to the expression of β-catenin, statistical significance was also found to the presence of cervical metastasis and tumor of low differentiation with the decreased expression of this marker. Regarding survival analysis, the low expression of β-catenin is related to worse overall survival and the reduction of expression of both markers to worse disease-free survival. We concluded that the reduction in expression of the markers studied leads to a prognostic impact as they are related to tumors with greater local aggressiveness and presence of cervical metastasis.

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