ERG oncoprotein expression in prostate cancer: Clonal progression of ERG-positive tumor cells and potential for ERG-based stratification

B. Furusato, S. H. Tan, D. Young, A. Dobi, C. Sun, A. A. Mohamed, R. Thangapazham, Y. Chen, G. McMaster, T. Sreenath, G. Petrovics, D. G. McLeod, S. Srivastava, I. A. Sesterhenn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

206 Scopus citations

Abstract

Gene fusions prevalent in prostate cancer (CaP) lead to the elevated expression of the ERG proto-oncogene. ERG activation present in 50-70% of prostate tumors underscores one of the most common oncogenic alterations in CaP. Despite numerous reports of gene fusions and mRNA expression, ERG oncoprotein status in CaP still remains to be defined. Furthermore, development of ERG protein-based assays may provide a new dimension to evaluation of gene fusions involving diverse androgen-regulated promoters and the ERG protein-coding sequence. Through exhaustive evaluations of 132 whole-mount prostates (261 tumor foci and over 200 000 benign glands) for the ERG oncoprotein nuclear expression, we demonstrated 99.9% specificity for detecting prostate tumor cells using a highly specific anti-ERG monoclonal antibody. The ERG oncoprotein expression correlated well with fusion transcript or gene fusion in randomly selected specimens. Strong concordance of ERG-positive foci of prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN) with ERG-positive carcinoma (82 out of 85 sections with PIN, 96.5%) affirms the biological role of ERG in clonal selection of prostate tumors in 65% (86 out of 132) of patients. Conversely, ERG negative PINs were associated with ERG-negative carcinoma. Taken together, the homogeneous and strong ERG expression detected in individual tumors establishes the potential for ERG oncoprotein-based stratification of CaP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)228-237
Number of pages10
JournalProstate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Clonal selection
  • ERG
  • Oncoprotein
  • Patient stratification
  • Prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'ERG oncoprotein expression in prostate cancer: Clonal progression of ERG-positive tumor cells and potential for ERG-based stratification'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this