Research IndicatorsGraph generated 06 August 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.
Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic. Tag cloud generated 06 August, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex
Specific Cancers (4)
Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.
Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).
OMIM, Johns Hopkin University
Referenced article focusing on the relationship between phenotype and genotype.
International Cancer Genome Consortium.
Summary of gene and mutations by cancer type from ICGC
Cancer Genome Anatomy Project, NCI
COSMIC, Sanger Institute
Somatic mutation information and related details
Search the Epigenomics database and view relevant gene tracks of samples.
Latest Publications: SEMA3F (cancer-related)
Rao J, Zhou ZH, Yang J, et al.Semaphorin-3F suppresses the stemness of colorectal cancer cells by inactivating Rac1.
Cancer Lett. 2015; 358(1):76-84 [PubMed
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Tumor cell stemness has been recognized as a key contributor to tumor initiation, progression and recurrence. Our previous studies have found that semaphorin-3F (SEMA3F), an axon guidance molecule in the development of central nervous system, inhibited the growth and metastasis of colorectal cancer (CRC). However, a possible role for SEMA3F in regulating cancer cell stemness remains unknown. Here, we report a novel mechanism of the acquirement of stemness of CRC cells regulated by SEMA3F. Knockdown of SEMA3F significantly promoted the self-renewal and tumorigenicity of CRC cells, and increased the expression of stemness-associated genes, while overexpressing SEMA3F reduced the stemness of CRC cells. Mechanistically, GTP-Rac1 was involved in SEMA3F mediated regulation of CRC cell stemness by targeting the Wnt/β-catenin pathway. Clinically, GTP-Rac1 expression was inversely correlated with SEMA3F levels in CRC samples and patients with SEMA3F(low)/GTP-Rac1(high) CRC showed poorer prognosis. Our findings demonstrate the ability of SEMA3F to inhibit the stemness of human CRC cells by suppressing Rac1 activation, which suggests a novel therapeutic approach for CRC.
Donnard E, Asprino PF, Correa BR, et al.Mutational analysis of genes coding for cell surface proteins in colorectal cancer cell lines reveal novel altered pathways, druggable mutations and mutated epitopes for targeted therapy.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(19):9199-213 [PubMed
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We carried out a mutational analysis of 3,594 genes coding for cell surface proteins (Surfaceome) in 23 colorectal cancer cell lines, searching for new altered pathways, druggable mutations and mutated epitopes for targeted therapy in colorectal cancer. A total of 3,944 somatic non-synonymous substitutions and 595 InDels, occurring in 2,061 (57%) Surfaceome genes were catalogued. We identified 48 genes not previously described as mutated in colorectal tumors in the TCGA database, including genes that are mutated and expressed in >10% of the cell lines (SEMA4C, FGFRL1, PKD1, FAM38A, WDR81, TMEM136, SLC36A1, SLC26A6, IGFLR1). Analysis of these genes uncovered important roles for FGF and SEMA4 signaling in colorectal cancer with possible therapeutic implications. We also found that cell lines express on average 11 druggable mutations, including frequent mutations (>20%) in the receptor tyrosine kinases AXL and EPHA2, which have not been previously considered as potential targets for colorectal cancer. Finally, we identified 82 cell surface mutated epitopes, however expression of only 30% of these epitopes was detected in our cell lines. Notwithstanding, 92% of these epitopes were expressed in cell lines with the mutator phenotype, opening new venues for the use of "general" immune checkpoint drugs in this subset of patients.
London NR, Gurgel RKThe role of vascular endothelial growth factor and vascular stability in diseases of the ear.
Laryngoscope. 2014; 124(8):E340-6 [PubMed
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OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS: Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a critical mediator of vascular permeability and angiogenesis and likely plays an important role in cochlear function and hearing. This review highlights the role of VEGF in hearing loss associated with vestibular schwannomas, otitis media with effusion, and sensorineural hearing loss.
STUDY DESIGN: PubMed literature review.
METHODS: A review of the literature was conducted to determine the role of VEGF in diseases affecting hearing.
RESULTS: Therapeutic efficacy has been demonstrated for the anti-VEGF agent bevacizumab in vestibular schwannomas, with tumor size reduction and hearing improvement in patients with neurofibromatosis type 2. The loss of functional Merlin, the protein product of the nf2 gene, results in a decrease in expression of the anti-angiogenic protein SEMA3F through a Rac-1-dependent mechanism, allowing VEGF to promote angiogenesis. Bevacizumab may therefore restore the angiogenic balance through inhibiting the relative increase in VEGF. Many of the clinical findings of otitis media with effusion can be reproduced by delivery of recombinant VEGF through transtympanic injection or submucosal osmotic pump. VEGF receptor inhibitors have been demonstrated to improve hearing in an animal model of otitis media with effusion. VEGF affects both the inner ear damage and repair processes in sensorineural hearing loss.
CONCLUSIONS: VEGF has an important role in vestibular schwannomas, otitis media with effusion, and sensorineural hearing loss.
BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to establish an osteosarcoma (OS) associated protein-protein interaction network and explore the pathogenesis of osteosarcoma.
METHODS: The gene expression profile GSE9508 was downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus database, including five samples of non-malignant bone (the control), seven samples for non-metastatic patients (six of which were analyzed in duplicate), and 11 samples for metastatic patients (10 of which were analyzed in duplicate). Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between osteosarcoma and control samples were identified by packages in R with the threshold of |logFC (fold change)| > 1 and false discovery rate < 0.05. Osprey software was used to construct the interaction network of DEGs, and genes at protein-protein interaction (PPI) nodes with high degrees were identified. The Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery and WebGestalt software were then used to perform functional annotation and pathway enrichment analyses for PPI networks, in which P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
RESULTS: Compared to the control samples, the expressions of 42 and 341 genes were altered in non-metastatic OS and metastatic OS samples, respectively. A total of 15 significantly enriched functions were obtained with Gene Ontology analysis (P < 0.05). The DEGs were classified and significantly enriched in three pathways, including the tricarboxylic acid cycle, lysosome and axon guidance. Genes such as HRAS, IDH3A, ATP6ap1, ATP6V0D2, SEMA3F and SEMA3A were involved in the enriched pathways.
CONCLUSIONS: The hub genes from metastatic OS samples are not only bio-markers of OS, but also help to improve therapies for OS.
The epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and its reversal, mesenchymal-epithelial transition (MET), are fundamental processes involved in tumor cell invasion and metastasis. SEMA3F is a secreted semaphorin and tumor suppressor downregulated by TGF-β1 and ZEB1-induced EMT. Here, we report that neuropilin (NRP)-2, the high-affinity receptor for SEMA3F and a coreceptor for certain growth factors, is upregulated during TGF-β1-driven EMT in lung cancer cells. Mechanistically, NRP2 upregulation was TβRI dependent and SMAD independent, occurring mainly at a posttranscriptional level involving increased association of mRNA with polyribosomes. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and AKT inhibition blocked NRP2 upregulation, whereas RNA interference-mediated attenuation of ZEB1 reduced steady-state NRP2 levels. In addition, NRP2 attenuation inhibited TGF-β1-driven morphologic transformation, migration/invasion, ERK activation, growth suppression, and changes in gene expression. In a mouse xenograft model of lung cancer, NRP2 attenuation also inhibited locally invasive features of the tumor and reversed TGF-β1-mediated growth inhibition. In support of these results, human lung cancer specimens with the highest NRP2 expression were predominantly E-cadherin negative. Furthermore, the presence of NRP2 staining strengthened the association of E-cadherin loss with high-grade tumors. Together, our results demonstrate that NRP2 contributes significantly to TGF-β1-induced EMT in lung cancer.
Shankar S, Marsh L, Srivastava RKEGCG inhibits growth of human pancreatic tumors orthotopically implanted in Balb C nude mice through modulation of FKHRL1/FOXO3a and neuropilin.
Mol Cell Biochem. 2013; 372(1-2):83-94 [PubMed
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Human pancreatic cancer is currently one of the fourth leading causes of cancer-related mortality with a 5-year survival rate of less than 5 %. Since pancreatic carcinoma is largely refractory to conventional therapies, there is a strong medical need for the development of novel and innovative cancer preventive strategies. The forkhead transcription factors of the O class (FOXO) play a major role in cell proliferation, angiogenesis, metastasis, and tumorigenesis. The objectives of this study were to examine whether FKHRL1/FOXO3a modulates antitumor activity of (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), an active ingredient in green tea, in pancreatic cancer model in vivo. PANC-1 cells were orthotopically implanted into Balb c nude mice and gavaged with EGCG after tumor formation. Cell proliferation and apoptosis were measured by Ki67 and TUNEL staining, respectively. The expression of PI3K, AKT, ERK, and FOXO3a/FKHRL1 and its target genes were measured by the western blot analysis and/or q-RT-PCR. FOXO-DNA binding was measured by gel shift assay. EGCG-treated mice showed significant inhibition in tumor growth which was associated with reduced phosphorylation of ERK, PI3K, AKT, and FKHRL1/FOXO3a, and modulation of FOXO target genes. EGCG induced apoptosis by upregulating Bim and activating caspase-3. EGCG modulated markers of cell cycle (p27/KIP1), angiogenesis (CD31, VEGF, IL-6, IL-8, SEMA3F, and HIF1α), and metastasis (MMP2 and MMP7). The inhibition of VEGF by EGCG was associated with suppression of neuropilin. EGCG inhibited epithelial-mesenchymal transition by upregulating the expression of E-cadherin and inhibiting the expression of N-cadherin and Zeb1. These data suggest that EGCG inhibits pancreatic cancer orthotopic tumor growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis which are associated with inhibition of PI3K/AKT and ERK pathways and activation of FKHRL1/FOXO3a. As a conclusion, EGCG can be used for the prevention and/or treatment of pancreatic cancer.
Zhou X, Ma L, Li J, et al.Effects of SEMA3G on migration and invasion of glioma cells.
Oncol Rep. 2012; 28(1):269-75 [PubMed
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Glioblastoma multiforme is the most aggressive type of brain tumor with a strong ability to invade and migrate into surrounding normal brain tissues, leading to high tumor recurrence and mortality. Most of class-3 semaphorins, especially SEMA3A, SEMA3B and SEMA3F, have been reported to have strong tumor inhibition ability, but the role of SEMA3G in tumor biology is largely unknown. We report here that SEMA3G possesses anti-migration and anti-invasion ability. To determine the potential effects of SEMA3G on migratory and invasive ability, we generated stable SEMA3G expression U251MG cells. We found that stably overexpressed SEMA3G inhibited the migratory and invasive behavior of U251MG cells. In addition, treatment with SEMA3G conditioned media also decreased the migratory and invasive ability of parental U251MG cells. Furthermore, SEMA3G also inhibited the activity of MMP2, an index of tumor invasion ability. Thus, our results suggest that SEMA3G inhibited tumor cell migration and invasion, which may be obtained through cell autonomous or paracrine mechanisms, and SEMA3G is a potential target for antitumor migration and invasion.
Neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) is an autosomal-dominant multiple neoplasia syndrome that results from mutations in the NF2 tumor suppressor gene. Patients with NF2 develop hallmark schwannomas that require surgery or radiation, both of which have significant adverse effects. Recent studies have indicated that the tumor microenvironment-in particular, tumor blood vessels-of schwannomas may be an important therapeutic target. Furthermore, although much has been done to understand how merlin, the NF2 gene product, functions as a tumor suppressor gene in schwannoma cells, the functional role of merlin in the tumor microenvironment and the mechanism(s) by which merlin regulates angiogenesis to support schwannoma growth is largely unexplored. Here we report that the expression of semaphorin 3F (SEMA3F) was specifically downregulated in schwannoma cells lacking merlin/NF2. When we reintroduced SEMA3F in schwannoma cells, we observed normalized tumor blood vessels, reduced tumor burden, and extended survival in nude mice bearing merlin-deficient brain tumors. Next, using chemical inhibitors and gene knockdown with RNA interference, we found that merlin regulated expression of SEMA3F through Rho GTPase family member Rac1. This study shows that, in addition to the tumor-suppressing activity of merlin, it also functions to maintain physiological angiogenesis in the nervous system by regulating antiangiogenic factors such as SEMA3F. Restoring the relative balance of proangiogenic and antiangiogenic factors, such as increases in SEMA3F, in schwannoma microenvironment may represent a novel strategy to alleviate the clinical symptoms of NF2-related schwannomas.
Inactivation of tumor suppressors and inhibitory microenvironmental factors is necessary for breast cancer invasion; therefore, identifying those suppressors and factors is crucial not only to advancing our knowledge of breast cancer, but also to discovering potential therapeutic targets. By analyzing gene expression profiles of polarized and disorganized human mammary epithelial cells in a physiologically relevant three-dimensional (3D) culture system, we identified retinoid orphan nuclear receptor alpha (RORα) as a transcription regulator of semaphorin 3F (SEMA3F), a suppressive microenvironmental factor. We showed that expression of RORα was downregulated in human breast cancer tissue and cell lines, and that reduced mRNA levels of RORα and SEMA3F correlated with poor prognosis. Restoring RORα expression reprogrammed breast cancer cells to form noninvasiveness structures in 3D culture and inhibited tumor growth in nude mice, accompanied by enhanced SEMA3F expression. Inactivation of RORα in nonmalignant human mammary epithelial cells inhibited SEMA3F transcription and impaired polarized acinar morphogenesis. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation and luciferase reporter assays, we showed that transcription of SEMA3F is directly regulated by RORα. Knockdown of SEMA3F in RORα-expressing cancer cells rescued the aggressive 3D phenotypes and tumor invasion. These findings indicate that RORα is a potential tumor suppressor and inhibits tumor invasion by inducing suppressive cell microenvironment.
Nguyen H, Ivanova VS, Kavandi L, et al.Progesterone and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D₃ inhibit endometrial cancer cell growth by upregulating semaphorin 3B and semaphorin 3F.
Mol Cancer Res. 2011; 9(11):1479-92 [PubMed
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Class 3 semaphorins (SEMA), SEMA3B and SEMA3F, are secreted proteins that regulate angiogenesis, tumor growth, and metastasis by binding to their transmembrane receptor complex consisting of plexins and neuropilins (NP). Expression of SEMAs and their receptors was assessed in tissue microarrays by immunohistochemistry. SEMA3B, SEMA3F, and plexin A3 were expressed strongly in normal endometrial tissues, whereas grade-dependent decreases were found in endometrial carcinomas. No change was observed in the expression of plexin A1, NP1, and NP2 in normal versus endometrial cancer tissues. Endometrial cancer cells showed decreased expression of SEMA3B, SEMA3F, and plexin A3 compared with their normal counterparts. Treatment of cancer cells with progesterone (P4) and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D(3) [1,25(OH)(2)D(3)] for a period of 72 hours induced a significant upregulation of SEMA3B and SEMA3F as well as inhibited growth of cancer cells by increasing caspase-3 activity. Cotreatment of cell lines with P4 or 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) and their respective antagonists confirmed the specificity of their actions. Transfection of siRNA-targeting SEMA3B and SEMA3F in endometrial cancer cells attenuated P4 or 1,25(OH)(2)D(3)-induced growth inhibition. Restoration of SEMA3B or SEMA3F expression in cancer cells caused growth inhibition, reduced soft agar colony formation, and cell invasiveness by inhibiting expression of matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2), MMP-9, integrin αvβ3, and proangiogenic genes and by upregulating antiangiogenic genes. Thus, we have identified two new P4 and 1,25(OH)(2)D(3)-regulated antitumor genes for endometrial cancer. These results suggest that the loss of SEMAs contribute to the malignant phenotype of endometrial cancer cells and that reexpression of SEMAs by ectopic expression or with anticancer agents P4 or 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) can be a promising therapeutic treatment against endometrial cancer.
Yoshikawa Y, Sato A, Tsujimura T, et al.Frequent deletion of 3p21.1 region carrying semaphorin 3G and aberrant expression of the genes participating in semaphorin signaling in the epithelioid type of malignant mesothelioma cells.
Int J Oncol. 2011; 39(6):1365-74 [PubMed
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Array-based comparative genomic hybridization analysis was performed on 21 malignant mesothelioma (MM) samples (16 primary cell cultures and 5 cell lines) and two reactive mesothelial hyperplasia (RM) primary cell cultures. The RM samples did not have any genomic losses or gains. In MM samples, deletions in 1p, 3p21, 4q, 9p21, 16p13 and 22q were detected frequently. We focused on 3p21 because this deletion was specific to the epithelioid type. Especially, a deletion in 3p21.1 region carrying seven genes including SEMA3G was found in 52% of MM samples (11 of 14 epithelioid samples). The allele loss of 3p21.1 might be a good marker for the epithelioid MM. A homozygous deletion in this region was detected in two MM primary cell cultures. A heterozygous deletion detected in nine samples contained the 3p21.1 region and 3p21.31 one carrying the candidate tumor suppressor genes such as semaphorin 3F (SEMA3F), SEMA3B and Ras association (RalGDS/AF-6) domain family member 1 (RASSF1A). SEMA3B, 3F and 3G are class 3 semaphorins and inhibit growth by competing with vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) through binding to neuropilin. All MM samples downregulated the expression of more than one gene for SEMA3B, 3F and 3G when compared with Met5a, a normal pleura-derived cell line. Moreover, in 12 of 14 epithelioid MM samples the expression level of SEMA3A was lower than that in Met5a and the two RM samples. An augmented expression of VEGFA was detected in half of the MM samples. The expression ratio of VEGFA/SEMA3A was significantly higher in the epithelioid MMs than in Met5a, RMs and the non-epithelioid MMs. Our data suggest that the downregulated expression of SEMA3A and several SEMA3s results in a loss of inhibitory activities in tumor angiogenesis and tumor growth of VEGFA; therefore, it may play an important role on the pathogenesis of the epithelioid type of MM.
Wu F, Zhou Q, Yang J, et al.Endogenous axon guiding chemorepulsant semaphorin-3F inhibits the growth and metastasis of colorectal carcinoma.
Clin Cancer Res. 2011; 17(9):2702-11 [PubMed
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PURPOSE: To elucidate the role of Semaphorin-3F (SEMA3F), originally described as an axon guiding chemorepulsant implicated in nerve development, in the progression of colorectal carcinoma.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: SEMA3F and its receptor NRP2 were examined in 72 cases of human colorectal carcinoma specimens and cell lines LoVo, SW480, and SW620 with immunohistochemistry and Western blotting. SEMA3F mRNA expression in the frozen tissue specimens and cell lines was examined with quantitative reverse transcriptase-PCR. Confocal laser scanning microscopy was used for detection of cellular localization of the proteins by immunofluorescent staining. MTT assay, flow cytometry, cell adhesion and migration, and xenografts were used to evaluate biological significance of SEMA3F.
RESULTS: SEMA3F was significantly reduced in colorectal carcinoma tissues and cell lines. Overexpression of SEMA3F resulted in reduced proliferation, adhesion to fibronectin, and migratory capability as well as reduced S-phase population and integrin αvβ3 expression of SW480 colon cancer cells. In addition, SEMA3F-overexpressing cells exhibited diminished tumorigenesis when transplanted orthotopically in nude mice and reduced liver metastases. Moreover, transfection of siRNA targeting SEMA3F in colon cancer cells increased their tumorigenicity in vivo.
CONCLUSIONS: Endogenous SEMA3F acts as a suppressor of the growth and metastasis of human colorectal cancer cells.
Id proteins (Id1 to Id4) are helix-loop-helix transcription factors that promote metastasis. It was found that Semaphorin 3F (SEMA3F), a potent inhibitor of metastasis, was repressed by Id2. High metastatic human tumor cell lines had relatively high amounts of Id2 and low SEMA3F levels compared with their low metastatic counterparts. No correlation between metastatic potential and expression of the other Id family members was observed. Furthermore, ectopic expression of Id2 in low metastatic tumor cells downregulated SEMA3F and, as a consequence, enhanced their ability to migrate and invade, two requisite steps of metastasis in vivo. Id2 overexpression was driven by the c-myc oncoprotein. SEMA3F was a direct target gene of the E47/Id2 pathway. Two E-box sites, which bind E protein transcription factors including E47, were identified in the promoter region of the SEMA3F gene. E47 directly activated SEMA3F promoter activity and expression and promoted SEMA3F biological activities, including filamentous actin depolymerization, inactivation of RhoA, and inhibition of cell migration. Silencing of SEMA3F inhibited the E47-induced SEMA3F expression and biological activities, confirming that these E47-induced effects were SEMA3F dependent. E47 did not induce expression of the other members of the SEMA3 family. Id2, a dominant-negative inhibitor of E proteins, abrogated the E47-induced SEMA3F expression and biological activities. Thus, high metastatic tumor cells overexpress c-myc, leading to upregulation of Id2 expression; the aberrantly elevated amount of Id2 represses SEMA3F expression and, as a consequence, enhances the ability of tumor cells to migrate and invade.
Jung SH, Yim SH, Hu HJ, et al.Copy number alterations and expression profiles of candidate genes in a pulmonary inflammatory myofibroblastic tumor.
Lung Cancer. 2010; 70(2):152-7 [PubMed
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Inflammatory myofibroblastic tumor (IMT) is a soft tissue neoplasm composed of myofibroblastic spindle cells accompanied by the inflammatory infiltrate. In addition to its phenotypic ambiguity, pathogenic mechanisms of the IMT also remain elusive. Although several chromosomal aberrations have been identified by karyotyping, detailed characteristics and extent of copy number alterations in IMT are unknown. Copy number alterations of an IMT case were examined using 30K whole-genome oligoarray-comparative genomic hybridization. RNA expression of putative cancer-related genes located in the chromosomal altered regions was assessed by qRT-PCR. We identified seven copy number gained regions, seven lost regions, nine amplifications and six homozygous deletions, which covers 2.5% of total genome. In homozygously deleted regions, RNA levels of putative tumor suppressors, SEMA3B, SEMA3F and SULT2A1, were significantly repressed being consistent with copy number status. In high-level amplification regions, RNA expression of four potential cancer-related genes was examined; GSTT1, ESR1, EVI1 and MITF. Among them, GSTT1 and ESR1 were significantly up-regulated, but EVI1 and MITF showed insignificant elevation of RNA expression. To our knowledge, this is the first genome-wide analysis of copy number alterations in IMT. Most of the putative cancer-related genes identified in this study are supposedly novel in IMT. Taken together, our results will help to elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms of IMT.
Semaphorins comprise a family of molecules that influence neuronal growth and guidance. Class-3 semaphorins, semaphorin-3B (SEMA3B) and semaphorin-3F (SEMA3F), illustrate their effects by forming a complex with neuropilins (NP-1 or NP-2) and plexins. We examined the status and regulation of semaphorins and their receptors in human ovarian cancer cells. A significantly reduced expression of SEMA3B (83 kDa), SEMA3F (90 kDa), and plexin-A3 was observed in ovarian cancer cell lines when compared with normal human ovarian surface epithelial cells. The expression of NP-1, NP-2, and plexin-A1 was not altered in human ovarian surface epithelial and ovarian cancer cells. The decreased expression of SEMA3B, SEMA3F, and plexin-A3 was confirmed in stage 3 ovarian tumors. The treatment of ovarian cancer cells with luteinizing hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and estrogen induced a significant upregulation of SEMA3B, whereas SEMA3F was upregulated only by estrogen. Cotreatment of cell lines with a hormone and its specific antagonist blocked the effect of the hormone. Ectopic expression of SEMA3B or SEMA3F reduced soft-agar colony formation, adhesion, and cell invasion of ovarian cancer cell cultures. Forced expression of SEMA3B, but not SEMA3F, inhibited viability of ovarian cancer cells. Overexpression of SEMA3B and SEMA3F reduced focal adhesion kinase phosphorylation and matrix metalloproteinase-2 and matrix metalloproteinase-9 expression in ovarian cancer cells. Forced expression of SEMA3F, but not SEMA3B in ovarian cancer cells, significantly inhibited endothelial cell tube formation. Collectively, our results suggest that the loss of SEMA3 expression could be a hallmark of cancer progression. Furthermore, gonadotropin- and/or estrogen-mediated maintenance of SEMA3 expression could control ovarian cancer angiogenesis and metastasis.
Gaur P, Bielenberg DR, Samuel S, et al.Role of class 3 semaphorins and their receptors in tumor growth and angiogenesis.
Clin Cancer Res. 2009; 15(22):6763-70 [PubMed
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Class 3 semaphorins (SEMA3) were first identified as glycoproteins that negatively mediate neuronal guidance by binding to neuropilin and repelling neurons away from the source of SEMA3. However, studies have shown that SEMA3s are also secreted by other cell types, including tumor cells, where they play an inhibitory role in tumor growth and angiogenesis (specifically SEMA3B and SEMA3F). SEMA3s primarily inhibit the cell motility and migration of tumor and endothelial cells by inducing collapse of the actin cytoskeleton via neuropilins and plexins. Besides binding to SEMA3s, neuropilin also binds the protumorigenic and proangiogenic ligand vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Although some studies attribute the antitumorigenic and antiangiogenic properties of SEMA3s to competition between SEMA3s and VEGF for binding to neuropilin receptors, several others have shown that SEMA3s display growth-inhibitory activity independent of competition with VEGF. A better understanding of these molecular interactions and the role and signaling of SEMA3s in tumor biology will help determine whether SEMA3s represent potential therapeutic agents. Herein, we briefly review (a) the role of SEMA3s in mediating tumor growth, (b) the SEMA3 receptors neuropilins and plexins, and (c) the potential competition between SEMA3s and VEGF family members for neuropilin binding.
Beuten J, Garcia D, Brand TC, et al.Semaphorin 3B and 3F single nucleotide polymorphisms are associated with prostate cancer risk and poor prognosis.
J Urol. 2009; 182(4):1614-20 [PubMed
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PURPOSE: SEMA3B and SEMA3F are 2 closely related genes lying 80 kb apart on chromosome 3 that have been shown to suppress tumor formation in vivo and in vitro. Each gene has a single nucleotide polymorphism that results in a nonsynonymous coding change, rs2071203 (SEMA3B) and rs1046956 (SEMA3F), as well as noncoding single nucleotide polymorphisms.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed a case-control study of 789 prostate cancer cases and 907 controls from 3 races/ethnicities to determine possible associations of 10 variants with prostate cancer risk or prognosis.
RESULTS: The risk of prostate cancer increased more than 2-fold in Hispanic men with TT alleles at rs2071203 in SEMA3B and with CC alleles for rs2072054 at the 5' end of SEMA3F (OR 2.13, 95% CI 1.12-4.04, p = 0.02 and OR 2.55, 95% CI 1.34-4.84, p = 0.0045, respectively). These 2 single nucleotide polymorphisms were also associated with a poor prognosis in Hispanic men (2.71 and 3.48-fold increased risk). A frequent G-C-G-G-A-T-C-C-T-G haplotype encompassing 10 SNPs was associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer and poor prognosis in Hispanic samples (OR 2.72, 95% CI 1.20-6.12, p = 0.016 and OR 3.32, 95% CI 1.21-9.10, p = 0.02). In nonHispanic white men the T-C-G-A-A-T-C-C haplotype was associated with a high Gleason score (OR 1.44, 95% CI 1.06-1.96, p = 0.021).
CONCLUSIONS: These data indicate that polymorphisms in SEMA3B and SEMA3F are associated with prostate cancer risk and poor prognosis in Hispanic and nonHispanic white men.
SEMA3F is a secreted semaphorin with potent antitumor activity, which is frequently downregulated in lung cancer. In cancer cell lines, SEMA3F overexpression decreases hypoxia-induced factor 1alpha protein and vascular endothelial growth factor mRNA, and inhibits multiple signaling components. Therefore, understanding how SEMA3F expression is inhibited in cancer cells is important. We previously defined the promoter organization of SEMA3F and found that chromatin remodeling by a histone deacetylase inhibitor was sufficient to activate SEMA3F expression. In lung cancer, we have also shown that ZEB-1, an E-box transcription repressor, is predominantly responsible for loss of E-Cadherin associated with a poor prognosis and resistance to epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitors. In the present study, we demonstrated that ZEB-1 also inhibits SEMA3F in lung cancer cells. Levels of ZEB-1, but not ZEB-2, Snail or Slug, significantly correlate with SEMA3F inhibition, and overexpression or inhibition of ZEB-1 correspondingly affected SEMA3F expression. Four conserved E-box sites were identified in the SEMA3F gene. Direct ZEB-1 binding was confirmed by chromatin immunoprecipitation assays for two of these, and ZEB-1 binding was reduced when cells were treated with a histone deacetylase inhibitor. These results demonstrate that ZEB-1 directly inhibits SEMA3F expression in lung cancer cells. SEMA3F loss was associated with changes in cell signaling: increased phospho-AKT in normoxia and increase of hypoxia-induced factor 1alpha protein in hypoxia. Moreover, exogenous addition of SEMA3F could modulate ZEB-1-induced angiogenesis in a chorioallantoic membrane assay. Together, these data provide further support for the importance of SEMA3F and ZEB-1 in lung cancer progression.
Kigel B, Varshavsky A, Kessler O, Neufeld GSuccessful inhibition of tumor development by specific class-3 semaphorins is associated with expression of appropriate semaphorin receptors by tumor cells.
PLoS One. 2008; 3(9):e3287 [PubMed
] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The class-3 semaphorins (sema3s) include seven family members. Six of them bind to neuropilin-1 (np1) or neuropilin-2 (np2) receptors or to both, while the seventh, sema3E, binds to the plexin-D1 receptor. Sema3B and sema3F were previously characterized as tumor suppressors and as inhibitors of tumor angiogenesis. To determine if additional class-3 semaphorins such as sema3A, sema3D, sema3E and sema3G possess anti-angiogenic and anti-tumorigenic properties, we expressed the recombinant full length semaphorins in four different tumorigenic cell lines expressing different combinations of class-3 semaphorin receptors. We show for the first time that sema3A, sema3D, sema3E and sema3G can function as potent anti-tumorigenic agents. All the semaphorins we examined were also able to reduce the concentration of tumor associated blood vessels although the potencies of the anti-angiogenic effects varied depending on the tumor cell type. Surprisingly, there was little correlation between the ability to inhibit tumor angiogenesis and their anti-tumorigenic activity. None of the semaphorins inhibited the adhesion of the tumor cells to plastic or fibronectin nor did they modulate the proliferation of tumor cells cultured in cell culture dishes. However, various semaphorins were able to inhibit the formation of soft agar colonies from tumor cells expressing appropriate semaphorin receptors, although in this case too the inhibitory effect was not always correlated with the anti-tumorigenic effect. In contrast, the anti-tumorigenic effect of each of the semaphorins correlated very well with tumor cell expression of specific signal transducing receptors for particular semaphorins. This correlation was not broken even in cases in which the tumor cells expressed significant concentrations of endogenous semaphorins. Our results suggest that combinations of different class-3 semaphorins may be more effective than single semaphorins in cases in which tumor cells express more than one type of semaphorin receptors.
Segditsas S, Sieber O, Deheragoda M, et al.Putative direct and indirect Wnt targets identified through consistent gene expression changes in APC-mutant intestinal adenomas from humans and mice.
Hum Mol Genet. 2008; 17(24):3864-75 [PubMed
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In order to identify new genes with differential expression in early intestinal tumours, we performed mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid) expression profiling of 16 human and 63 mouse adenomas. All individuals had germline APC mutations to ensure that tumorigenesis was driven by 'second hits' at APC. Using stringent filtering to identify changes consistent between humans and mice, we identified 60 genes up-regulated and 151 down-regulated in tumours. For 22 selected genes--including known Wnt targets--expression differences were confirmed by qRT-PCR (quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction). Most, but not all, differences were also present in colorectal carcinomas. In situ analysis showed a complex picture. Expression of up-regulated genes in adenomas was usually uniform/diffuse (e.g. ITGA6) or prominent in the tumour core (e.g. LGR5); in normal tissue, these genes were expressed at crypt bases or the transit amplifying zone. Down-regulated genes were often undetectable in adenomas, but in normal tissue were expressed in mesenchyme (e.g. GREM1/2) or differentiated cells towards crypt tops (e.g. SGK1). In silico analysis of TCF4-binding motifs showed that some of our genes were probably direct Wnt targets. Previous studies, mostly focused on human tumours, showed partial overlap with our 'expression signature', but 37 genes were unique to our study, including TACSTD2, SEMA3F, HOXA9 and IER3 (up-regulated), and TAGLN, GREM1, GREM2, MAB21L2 and RARRES2 (down-regulated). Combined analysis of our and published human data identified additional genes differentially expressed in adenomas, including decreased BMPs (bone morphogenetic proteins) and increased BUB1/BUB1B. Several of the newly identified, differentially expressed genes represent potential diagnostic or therapeutic targets for intestinal tumours.
BACKGROUND: We identified two 3p21.3 regions (LUCA and AP20) as most frequently affected in lung, breast and other carcinomas and reported their fine physical and gene maps. It is becoming increasingly clear that each of these two regions contains several TSGs. Until now TSGs which were isolated from AP20 and LUCA regions (e.g.G21/NPRL2, RASSF1A, RASSF1C, SEMA3B, SEMA3F, RBSP3) were shown to inhibit tumour cell growth both in vitro and in vivo.
METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The effect of expression HYAL1 and HYAL2 was studied by colony formation inhibition, growth curve and cell proliferation tests in vitro and tumour growth assay in vivo. Very modest growth inhibition was detected in vitro in U2020 lung and KRC/Y renal carcinoma cell lines. In the in vivo experiment stably transfected KRC/Y cells expressing HYAL1 or HYAL2 were inoculated into SCID mice (10 and 12 mice respectively). Tumours grew in eight mice inoculated with HYAL1. Ectopic HYAL1 was deleted in all of them. HYAL2 was inoculated into 12 mice and only four tumours were obtained. In 3 of them the gene was deleted. In one tumour it was present but not expressed. As expected for tumour suppressor genes HYAL1 and HYAL2 were down-expressed in 15 fresh lung squamous cell carcinomas (100%) and clear cell RCC tumours (60-67%).
CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results suggest that the expression of either gene has led to inhibition of tumour growth in vivo without noticeable effect on growth in vitro. HYAL1 and HYAL2 thus differ in this aspect from other tumour suppressors like P53 or RASSF1A that inhibit growth both in vitro and in vivo. Targeting the microenvironment of cancer cells is one of the most promising venues of cancer therapeutics. As major hyaluronidases in human cells, HYAL1 and HYAL2 may control intercellular interactions and microenvironment of tumour cells providing excellent targets for cancer treatment.
Futamura M, Kamino H, Miyamoto Y, et al.Possible role of semaphorin 3F, a candidate tumor suppressor gene at 3p21.3, in p53-regulated tumor angiogenesis suppression.
Cancer Res. 2007; 67(4):1451-60 [PubMed
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Although the regulation of tumor angiogenesis is believed to be one of the core functions of p53, the mechanism still remains to be elucidated. Here, we report that semaphorin 3F (SEMA3F), an axon guidance molecule, is involved in p53-regulated antiangiogenesis. The expression level of SEMA3F mRNA was increased by both exogenous and endogenous p53. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assay indicated that a potent p53-binding sequence in intron 1 of SEMA3F interacts with p53 and that it has a p53-responsive transcriptional activity. Overexpression of SEMA3F inhibited in vitro cell growth of the lung cancer cell line H1299. In nude mice assay, the size of the H1299 tumors expressing SEMA3F was much smaller, and they showed lesser number of blood vessels as compared with the control tumors. Moreover, tumors derived from the p53-knockdown colorectal cancer cell line LS174T displayed a remarkable enhancement of tumor vessel formation as compared with control tumors containing normal levels of p53. The expression levels of SEMA3F and neuropilin-2 (NRP2), the functional receptor for SEMA3F, in p53-knockdown LS174T tumors were lower than those in the control tumors. Adenovirus-mediated SEMA3F gene transfer induced the remarkable in vitro growth suppression of the stable transformant of H1299 cells, which express high levels of NRP2. These results suggest that p53 negatively regulates tumor vessel formation and cell growth via the SEMA3F-NRP2 pathway.
Osada R, Horiuchi A, Kikuchi N, et al.Expression of semaphorins, vascular endothelial growth factor, and their common receptor neuropilins and alleic loss of semaphorin locus in epithelial ovarian neoplasms: increased ratio of vascular endothelial growth factor to semaphorin is a poor prognostic factor in ovarian carcinomas.
Hum Pathol. 2006; 37(11):1414-25 [PubMed
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Semaphorins (SEMAs) compete with vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) for receptor neuropilin 1 (NP1) and 2 (NP2) and suppress angiogenesis. To clarify the involvement of SEMA and VEGF in the development and progression of ovarian carcinoma, we analyzed the immunohistochemical expression of SEMA, VEGF, NP1, and NP2 in 105 epithelial ovarian tumors. In addition, loss of heterozygosity at SEMA gene loci was examined. Strong expression of SEMA was found in 48% of benign, 33% of borderline tumors, and 13% of carcinomas (P < .05). Positivity for SEMA was significantly decreased in stage IV carcinomas and the expression of SEMA was significantly lower in peritoneal metastases than in primary lesions. Expression of SEMA showed a weak inverse correlation with microvessel density, but the correlation was not statistically significant. Loss of heterozygosity at SEMA3B or SEMA3F was demonstrated in none of the benign tumors, 8% of borderline tumors, and 29% of carcinomas. Expression of NP1 and NP2 was significantly higher in carcinomas than in benign tumors (P < .0001 and .0002, respectively). Patients with ovarian carcinoma with a high VEGF/SEMA ratio showed poorer survival than those with a low VEGF/SEMA ratio (P = .005). Decreased expression of SEMA and increased expression of NP1 and NP2 are characteristics of ovarian carcinomas, and loss of SEMA expression may play an important role in ovarian carcinoma progression. A high VEGF/SEMA ratio has adverse prognostic significance in patients with ovarian carcinoma.
Bielenberg DR, Pettaway CA, Takashima S, Klagsbrun MNeuropilins in neoplasms: expression, regulation, and function.
Exp Cell Res. 2006; 312(5):584-93 [PubMed
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Neuropilins (NRP) are membranous receptors capable of binding two disparate ligands, class 3 semaphorins (SEMA) and vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGF), and regulating two diverse systems, neuronal guidance and angiogenesis. The neuropilin genes, NRP1 and NRP2, share similar protein structure, but differ in their expression patterns, regulation, and ligand-binding specificities. NRPs vary in their expression patterns; for example, endothelial cells express both NRP1 and NRP2, lymphatic endothelial cells predominantly express NRP2, and epidermal cells predominantly express NRP1. NRP expression can be differentially regulated by transcription factors, e.g. prox-1 induces NRP2 while suppressing NRP1, or by growth factors, e.g. epidermal growth factor (EGF) induces NRP1 but not NRP2. Nearly all tumor cells express NRP1, NRP2, or both. Carcinomas express NRP1, whereas neuronal tumors and melanomas predominantly express NRP2. SEMAs play a role in neoplasms as angiogenesis inhibitors. For example, SEMA3F, which binds specifically to NRP2, inhibits tumor angiogenesis and metastasis. Metastatic tumor cells lose SEMA3F expression during progression. Therefore, SEMA3F may have therapeutic potential. This article focuses on the role of NRPs and SEMAs in tumor progression and angiogenesis.
Melatonin has been experimentally implicated in skin functions such as hair growth cycling, fur pigmentation, and melanoma control, and melatonin receptors are expressed in several skin cells including normal and malignant keratinocytes, melanocytes, and fibroblasts. Melatonin is also able to suppress ultraviolet (UV)-induced damage to skin cells and shows strong antioxidant activity in UV exposed cells. Moreover, we recently uncovered expression in the skin of the biochemical machinery involved in the sequential transformation of l-tryptophan to serotonin and melatonin. Existence of the biosynthetic pathway was confirmed by detection of the corresponding genes and proteins with actual demonstration of enzymatic activities for tryptophan hydroxylase, serotonin N-acetyl-transferase, and hydroxyindole-O-methyltransferase in extracts from skin and skin cells. Initial evidence for in vivo synthesis of melatonin and its metabolism was obtained in hamster skin organ culture and in one melanoma line. Therefore, we propose that melatonin (synthesized locally or delivered topically) could counteract or buffer external (environmental) or internal stresses to preserve the biological integrity of the organ and to maintain its home-ostasis. Furthermore, melatonin could have a role in protection against solar radiation or even in the management of skin diseases.
Loss of the 3p21.3-encoded semaphorins, SEMA3B and SEMA3F, is implicated in lung cancer development. Although both antagonize VEGF binding/response to neuropilin (NRP) receptors, in lung cancer lines, SEMA3F is predominantly expressed and preferentially utilizes NRP2. In lung cancer patients, SEMA3F loss correlates with advanced disease and increased VEGF binding to tumor cells. In cell lines, VEGF enhances adhesion and migration in an integrin-dependent manner, and exogenous SEMA3F causes cells to round and lose extracellular contacts. Using retroviral infections, we established stable SEMA3F transfectants in two NSCLC cell lines, NCI-H157 and NCI-H460. When orthotopically injected into nude rats, both control lines caused lethal tumors in all recipients. In contrast, all animals receiving H157-SEMA3F cells, survived to 100 days, whereas all H157 controls succumbed. In H460 cells, which express NRP1 but not NRP2, SEMA3F did not prolong survival. This antitumor effect in H157 cells was associated with loss of activated alpha(v)beta(3) integrin and adhesion to extracellular matrix components. In addition, H157-SEMA3F cells, and parental H157 cells exposed to SEMA3F-conditioned medium, showed loss of p42/p44 MAPK phosphorylation. Thus, in this in vivo lung cancer model, SEMA3F has potent antitumor effects, which may impinge on activated integrin and MAPK signaling.
Leivo I, Jee KJ, Heikinheimo K, et al.Characterization of gene expression in major types of salivary gland carcinomas with epithelial differentiation.
Cancer Genet Cytogenet. 2005; 156(2):104-13 [PubMed
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Gene expression profiles were studied in 13 cases of salivary gland carcinoma including mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC), acinic cell carcinoma (ACC), and salivary duct carcinoma (SDC) using a cDNA array. A total of 162 genes were deregulated. Only 5 genes were overexpressed in all carcinomas including fibronectin 1 (FN1), tissue metalloproteinase inhibitor 1 (TIMP1), biglycan (BGN), tenascin-C (HXB), and insulin-like growth factor binding protein 5 (IGFBP5), whereas 16 genes were underexpressed. The small number of similarly deregulated genes in these carcinoma entities suggests an extensive genetic variation between them. This result agrees with the great histopathological diversity of different entities of salivary gland carcinoma. Furthermore, diversity in gene expression between the carcinoma types was identified also by hierarchical clustering. Each carcinoma entity was clustered together but MEC, SDC, and ACC were separated from each other. Significance analysis of microarrays identified 27 genes expressed differently between the groups. In MEC, overexpressed genes included those of cell proliferation (IL-6 and SFN) and cell adhesion (SEMA3F and COL6A3), whereas many underexpressed genes were related to DNA modification (NTHL1 and RBBP4). Apoptosis-related genes CASP10 and MMP11 were overexpressed in SDC, in accordance with the typical tumor necrosis seen in this entity. An intermediate filament protein of basal epithelial cells, cytokeratin 14 (KRT14) was clearly differently expressed between the 3 types of carcinoma, and can be used as an aid in their differential diagnosis. The array results were validated by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry.
Senchenko VN, Liu J, Loginov W, et al.Discovery of frequent homozygous deletions in chromosome 3p21.3 LUCA and AP20 regions in renal, lung and breast carcinomas.
Oncogene. 2004; 23(34):5719-28 [PubMed
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We searched for chromosome 3p homo- and hemizygous losses in 23 lung cancer cell lines, 53 renal cell and 22 breast carcinoma biopsies using 31 microsatellite markers located in frequently deleted 3p regions. In addition, two sequence-tagged site markers (NLJ-003 and NL3-001) located in the Alu-PCR clone 20 region (AP20) and lung cancer (LUCA) regions, respectively, were used for quantitative real-time PCR (QPCR). We found frequent (10-18%) homozygous deletions (HDs) in both 3p21.3 regions in the biopsies and lung cancer cell lines. In addition, we discovered that amplification of 3p is a very common (15-42.5%) event in these cancers and probably in other epithelial malignancies. QPCR showed that aberrations of either NLJ-003 or NL3-001 were detected in more than 90% of all studied cases. HDs were frequently detected simultaneously both in NLJ-003 or NL3-001 loci in the same tumour (P<3-10(-7)). This observation suggests that tumour suppressor genes (TSG) in these regions could have a synergistic effect. The exceptionally high frequency of chromosome aberrations in NLJ-003 and NL3-001 loci suggests that multiple TSG(s) involved in different malignancies are located very near to these markers. Precise mapping of 15 independent HDs in the LUCA region allowed us to establish the smallest HD region in 3p21.3C located between D3S1568 (CACNA2D2 gene) and D3S4604 (SEMA3F gene). This region contains 17 genes. Mapping of 19 HDs in the AP20 region resulted in the localization of the minimal region to the interval flanked by D3S1298 and D3S3623 markers. Only four genes were discovered in this interval, namely, APRG1, ITGA9, HYA22 and VILL.
Slominski A, Pisarchik A, Johansson O, et al.Tryptophan hydroxylase expression in human skin cells.
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2003; 1639(2):80-6 [PubMed
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We attempted to further characterize cutaneous serotoninergic and melatoninergic pathways evaluating the key biosynthetic enzyme tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH). There was wide expression of TPH mRNA in whole human skin, cultured melanocytes and melanoma cells, dermal fibroblasts, squamous cell carcinoma cells and keratinocytes. Gene expression was associated with detection of TPH immunoreactive species by Western blotting. Characterization of the TPH immunoreactive species performed with two different antibodies showed expression of the expected protein (55-60 kDa), and of forms with higher and lower molecular weights. This pattern of broad spectrum of TPH expression including presumed degradation products suggests rapid turnover of the enzyme, as previously reported in mastocytoma cells. RP-HPLC of skin extracts showed fluorescent species with the retention time of serotonin and N-acetylserotonin. Immunocytochemistry performed in skin biopsies localized TPH immunoreactivity to normal and malignant melanocytes. We conclude that while the TPH mRNA and protein are widely expressed in cultured normal and pathological epidermal and dermal skin cells, in vivo TPH expression is predominantly restricted to cells of melanocytic origin.
Lantuéjoul S, Constantin B, Drabkin H, et al.Expression of VEGF, semaphorin SEMA3F, and their common receptors neuropilins NP1 and NP2 in preinvasive bronchial lesions, lung tumours, and cell lines.
J Pathol. 2003; 200(3):336-47 [PubMed
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Two receptors, neuropilin 1 (NP1) and neuropilin 2 (NP2), bind class 3 semaphorins, axon guidance molecules including SEMA3F, the gene for which was isolated from a 3p21.3 deletion in lung cancer. In addition, they bind VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor), enhancing the effects of VEGF binding to KDR/Flk-1. Elevated VEGF levels are associated with the loss and cytoplasmic delocalization of SEMA3F in lung cancer, suggesting competition for their NP1 and NP2 receptors. To determine the timing of these events, we compared by immunohistochemistry VEGF, SEMA3F, NP1 and NP2 expression in 50 preneoplastic lesions and 112 lung tumours. In preneoplastic lesions, VEGF increased from low-grade to high-grade dysplasia (p=0.001) whereas SEMA3F levels remained low. NP1 and NP2 levels increased from dysplasia to microinvasive carcinoma (p=0.0001) and correlated with VEGF expression (p=0.04 and 0.0002, respectively). Non-small cell lung carcinoma overexpressed VEGF and NP1 and NP2 significantly more often than neuroendocrine tumours including small cell lung carcinoma. SEMA3F loss or delocalization correlated with advanced tumour stage. Migrating cells overexpressed VEGF, SEMA3F, NP1 and NP2 with cytoplasmic delocalization of NP1 as demonstrated in an in vitro wound assay. These results demonstrate early alteration of the VEGF/SEMA3F/NP pathway in lung cancer progression.