Association between sucrase-isomaltase and p53 expression in colorectal cancer

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Cancer Biology



Document Type



Antigens, Differentiation; Antigens, Neoplasm; Colorectal Neoplasms; Galectin 3; Humans; Immunohistochemistry; Membrane Glycoproteins; Prognosis; Sucrase-Isomaltase Complex; Tumor Markers, Biological; Tumor Suppressor Protein p53


BACKGROUND: Sucrase-isomaltase (SI) is a tissue-based phenotypic marker that is an independent prognostic factor in colorectal cancer (CRC). DF3 and galectin 3 are two other tissue-based markers that are upregulated during neoplastic transformation. Because p53 mutations are acquired during neoplastic progression, we reasoned that alterations in SI and p53 may be associated despite an apparent lack of biological interaction.

METHODS: Paraffin sections from 183 patients who underwent surgery at New England Deaconess Hospital (NEDH) between 1965 and 1977 were analyzed first by immunohistochemistry (IHC) for the expression of the markers SI, DF3, and galectin 3, which were scored as absent or present. Paraffin sections from a second group of 59 patients who underwent surgery at NEDH between 1985 and 1992 were analyzed by IHC for the expression of p53 as well as SI, DF3, and galectin 3. p53 nuclear staining was scored as absent or present. Previous work has shown that p53 is mutated in all cells with nuclear staining and in 10% of tumors that are unstained.

RESULTS: SI expression was not associated with the expression of either DF3 or galectin 3, and neither DF3 nor galectin 3 were prognostic factors in CRC. None of the phenotypic markers were associated with any of the clinicopathologic variables. However, 21 of 24 p53-positive cases (88%) expressed SI, whereas 15 of 35 p53-negative cases (43%) were also SI negative (p = 0.02, Fisher exact test). p53 expression was not associated with expression of DF3 or galectin 3.

CONCLUSIONS: SI expression and p53 mutation are associated significantly in CRC. Although the mechanism underlying such an association in presently unknown, the association may define a subset of patients with a worse prognosis.

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Citation: Ann Surg Oncol. 1997 Mar;4(2):176-83.

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