eISSN: 1896-9151
ISSN: 1734-1922
Archives of Medical Science
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SCImago Journal & Country Rank
2/2020
vol. 16
 
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abstract:
Basic research

Ultrastructure of gap junction and Cx43 expression in gastric cancer tissues of the patients

Chun-Hui Li
,
Mei-Ling Hao
,
Yu Sun
,
Zhu-Jun Wang
,
Jian-Ling Li

Arch Med Sci 2020; 16 (2): 352–358
Online publish date: 2020/02/04
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Introduction
Gap junctions are intercellular channels formed by connexin facilitating communication between cells by allowing transfer of ions and small signaling molecules. Connexin 43 (Cx43) is the most ubiquitous connexin in human tissues. Ample evidence suggests the role of gap junction and its connexins such as connexin 43 in human cancers including gastric cancer, which has an important place in the worldwide incidence of cancer and cancer-related deaths. Due to a number of contradictory studies and insufficient detailed examination in specific cancers, such as gastric cancer, more data on the role of gap junctions and their connexins such as Cx43 involved in gastric cancer remain necessary.

Material and methods
Transmission electron microscopy, Western blotting and RT-PCR were used to show the ultrastructure damage of the gap junction in the gastric carcinoma tissue as well as the expression of Cx43 protein and mRNA, respectively.

Results
Ultrastructure damage of the gap junction in gastric carcinoma tissue was shown while poorly differentiated tissue experienced greater damage. The expression of Cx43 protein and mRNA was higher in healthy gastric tissue than in carcinomatous gastric tissue (p < 0.05). There was higher expression of Cx43 protein and mRNA in high-medium differentiation than in poor differentiation (p < 0.05). Cx43 protein and mRNA expression is not statistically significant for different ages and sex (such as for > 56 and ≤ 56 years) (p > 0.05).

Conclusions
Ultrastructural changes of gap junctions with abnormal Cx43 expression are associated with occurrence and development of gastric cancer, which provides a new research direction for gastric cancer pathogenesis and targeted therapy.

keywords:

gastric carcinoma, gap junction, Cx43, ultrastructure

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