Research Papers:

Epstein-Barr virus latent membrane protein 2A suppresses the expression of HER2 via a pathway involving TWIST and YB-1 in Epstein-Barr virus-associated gastric carcinomas

Yi-wang Zhang, Xiao-xiao Zhao, Cui Tan, Zhi-gang Zhang, Ye Jiang, Jian-ning Chen, Hong-bo Wei, Ling Xue, Hai-gang Li, Hong Du and Chun-kui Shao _

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Oncotarget. 2015; 6:207-220. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.2702

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Yi-wang Zhang1, Xiao-xiao Zhao1, Cui Tan4, Zhi-gang Zhang1, Ye Jiang1, Jian-ning Chen1, Hong-bo Wei2, Ling Xue3, Hai-gang Li4, Hong Du5 and Chun-kui Shao1

1 Department of Pathology, The Third Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China

2 Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery, The Third Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China

3 Department of Pathology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Zhongshan Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China

4 Department of Pathology, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China

5 Department of Pathology, Guangzhou First Municipal People’s Hospital, Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China


Chun-kui Shao, email:

Keywords: EBVaGC; HER2; LMP2A; TWIST; YB-1

Received: August 20, 2014 Accepted: November 06, 2014 Published: November 06, 2014


To explore HER2 expression in Epstein-Barr virus-associated gastric carcinoma (EBVaGC) and the possible mechanisms causing down-regulation of HER2 expression in EBVaGC, we first evaluated HER2 and LMP2A expression on a clinicopathological-features matched cohort including 78 EBVaGC and 216 EBV-negative gastric carcinoma (EBVnGC) cases by immunohistochemistry. Cases with high HER2 expression in EBVaGC were significantly less than in EBVnGC (5.1% versus 23.7%; p<0.001), and none of the 34 LMP2A+ EBVaGC showed high HER2 expression. Further, overexpressing LMP2A in EBV-negative SGC7901 cells significantly decreased HER2, TWIST and YB-1 mRNA by 36.1%±8.1%, 87.6%±14.0% and 83.8%±5.7%, and protein by 44%, 57% and 49%, respectively. Additionally, the nucleus/cytoplasm ratios of TWIST and YB-1 were also decreased by 85% and 80%, respectively. Silencing LMP2A by siRNA in EBV-positive SNU719 cells for 48 h significantly increased HER2, TWIST and YB-1 mRNA to 276.7%±14.6%, 1284.8%±38.2% and 332.0%±15.5% and protein to 212%, 457% and 232%, respectively. The nucleus/cytoplasm ratios of TWIST and YB-1 were up-regulated by 4.00- and 3.57-fold, respectively, following LMP2A down-regulation. Moreover, LMP2A+/HER2low EBVaGC cases presented the best overall survival compared with LMP2A-/HER2low and LMP2A-/HER2high cases (p=0.003, log-rank test). These results suggest that LMP2A may suppress the HER2 expression through the TWIST/YB-1 axis in EBVaGC.

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