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Expression of E6AP and PML predicts for prostate cancer progression and cancer-specific death

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Birch S.E., Kench J.G., Takano E., Chan P., Chan A.-L., Chiam K., Veillard A.-S., Stricker P., Haupt S., Haupt Y., Horvath L., Fox S.B.

Annals of oncology : official journal of the European Society for Medical Oncology / ESMO 2014 25:12 (2392-2397)

BACKGROUND: The promyelocytic leukemia (PML) tumor suppressor plays an important role in the response to a variety of cellular stressors and its expression is downregulated or lost in a range of human tumors. We have previously shown that the E3 ligase E6-associated protein (E6AP) is an important regulator of PML protein stability but the relationship and clinical impact of PML and E6AP expression in prostatic carcinoma is unknown.METHODS: E6AP and PML expression was assessed in tissue microarrays from a phase I discovery cohort of 170 patients treated by radical prostatectomy for localized prostate cancer (PC). Correlation analysis was carried out between PML and E6AP expression and clinicopathological variates including PSA as a surrogate of disease recurrence. The results were confirmed in a phase II validation cohort of 318 patients with associated clinical recurrence and survival data.RESULTS: Survival analysis of the phase I cohort revealed that patients whose tumors showed reduced PML and high E6AP expression had reduced time to PSA relapse (P = 0.012). This was confirmed in the phase II validation cohort where the expression profile of high E6AP/low PML was significantly associated with reduced time to PSA relapse (P < 0.001), clinical relapse (P = 0.016) and PC-specific death (P = 0.014). In multivariate analysis, this expression profile was an independent prognostic indicator of PSA relapse and clinical relapse independent of clinicopathologic factors predicting recurrence.CONCLUSION: This study identifies E6AP and PML as potential prognostic markers in localized prostate carcinoma and supports a role for E6AP in driving the downregulation or loss of PML expression in prostate carcinomas.

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