Over-expression of osteopontin in non-small cell lung cancers: its clinical significance

Zhi Hu, Ting Xiao, Dong mei Lin, Shu ping Guo, Zi qiang Zhang, Xue bing Di, Shu jun Cheng, Yan ning Gao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: Data obtained from a differentially expressed cDNA library constructed previously in this laboratory demonstrated that the extracellular matrix molecule osteopontin (OPN) is one of most considerably over-expressed genes in non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLCs). The purpose of the present study was to explore the expression status of OPN in a large scale NSCLC tissue samples, and estimate its significance in progression of the malignant disease. METHODS: RT-PCR was performed with the tumor and adjacent normal tissues from 35 patients with NSCLC, at transcriptional levels of OPN. To determine the expression of OPN protein in the tumor tissues, immunohistochemical (IHC) staining was subsequently carried out on paraffin-embedded sections in tissue microarrays containing 662 samples derived from NSCLC cases. The correlation between the expression level of OPN and clinical characteristics was analyzed statistically. RESULTS: Comparing with the paired normal lung tissue, high level RNA of OPN was detected in 80.0% (28/35) of the NSCLC tumor tissues by RT-PCR, which confirmed the information obtained previously by our differentially expressed cDNA library. The results of IHC analysis showed that positively stained OPN protein was observed in 59.6% (331/555) of the tumor tissues, which was remarkably higher than that (25.2%, 27/107) detected in the normal control tissues (P < 0.001). Among the NSCLCs investigated, over-expressed OPN was more frequently found in squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) than in adenocarcinomas. A further analysis on SCCs demonstrated that the rate of over-expressed OPN was significantly different between the primary tumors with and without lymphatic metastases (68.6% vs. 49.7%, P = 0.001), but similar in the primary tumors and their corresponding metastases in lymph nodes (68.6% vs. 75.5%, P = 0.171). CONCLUSION: Expression of OPN protein is distinctly increased in NSCLCs, particularly in SCCs. OPN over-expression is considerably correlated with lymph node metastasis, increasing the risk of tumor metastasis (OR = 2.212). The resulting data suggest that OPN facilitates the progression of NSCLCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)591-595
Number of pages5
JournalZhonghua zhong liu za zhi [Chinese journal of oncology]
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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