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Chinese Journal of Dental Research
Chin J Dent Res 21 (2018), No. 1     30. Mar. 2018
Chin J Dent Res 21 (2018), No. 1  (30.03.2018)

Page 31-40, doi:10.3290/j.cjdr.a39916, PubMed:29507910

Sonic Hedgehog Signalling Activation Contributes to ALCAM Over-Expression and Poor Clinical Outcome in Patients with Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Chen, Gang / Yan, Ming / Li, Rong Rong / Chen, Wan Tao
Objective: To investigate the Sonic Hedgehog (SHH) signalling molecules and activated leukocyte cell adhesion molecule (ALCAM) expression in the mechanisms regulating invasion and metastasis in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC).
Methods: The expressions of SHH signalling molecules Gli family zinc finger 1/2 (Gli1/Gli2), as well as ALCAM expression, was analysed in 101 OSCC patients by immunohistochemistry. The potential relationship between Gli1/Gli2 and ALCAM in regard to invasion and metastasis were studied by western blot, invasion and wound-healing assays.
Results: Gli1, Gli2 and ALCAM were expressed in 54.5%, 49.5% and 47.5% of the 101 OSCC specimens, respectively. High expression of ALCAM was associated with shorter survival in the patient population (P = 0.018), which was independent of other clinical parameters. Notably, when both ALCAM expression and positive nodal status were considered, an enhanced prediction of clinical outcomes was achieved (P = 0.001). In OSCC cell lines, down-regulation of ALCAM resulted in reduced cell invasion and metastasis. Importantly, SHH activation increased the half-life of ALCAM leading to ALCAM accumulation and increased cell invasion and migration.
Conclusion: ALCAM over-expression in OSCC is an independent prognostic factor for OSCC patients. Its over-expression may be the result of the activation of the SHH signalling pathway and contributes to OSCC progression.

Keywords: ALCAM, Gli1, Gli2, invasion, migration, OSCC