Maspin is a member of serpin family with tumor suppressing activity. Initially identified from normal mammary epithelial cells, maspin expression was down-regulated in breast tumor cells by both in vitro assay and by immunostaining of clinical specimen from breast cancer patients. Recently, maspin research has been advanced to clinical research aimed at correlating the tumor progression with the expression level of maspin in breast cancers. However, due to the variation and large sample sizes, no comparison study of maspin expression has been done using various normal and tumor samples. The tissue microarray is a technique recently developed for the standardization and high-throughput screening of clinical markers. We have used the tissue microarray to examine the maspin expression in various normal tissues and cancers. Our data indicated that maspin was expressed at different level in most of human tissues in the array. However, maspin expression was consistently down-regulated during tumor progression. There were no obvious correlation between maspin expression and tumor grades, nor was there any correlation with the age of patients. Since wild-type p53 was found to activate maspin promoter in vitro, we examined weather there was a connection between p53 level and maspin expression in vivo. Our data indicate that maspin expression inversely correlates with mutant p53 level in majority of cancer, suggesting maspin is likely a p53 target gene in vivo.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research