Increased expression of enhancer of Zeste Homolog 2 (EZH2) differentiates squamous cell carcinoma from normal skin and actinic keratosis
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Enhancer of Zeste Homolog 2 (EZH2) is a polycomb group protein that has been shown to be involved in the progression of multiple human cancers including melanoma. The expression of EZH2 in normal skin and in pre-malignant and malignant cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) has not been studied.
We examined the expression of EZH2 in normal skin, actinic keratosis (AK), SCC in situ, well-differentiated (SCC-WD), moderately-differentiated (SCC-MD) and poorly-differentiated SCC (SCC-PD) to ascertain whether EZH2 expression differentiates these conditions.
Materials and Methods
Immunohistochemical staining for EZH2 was performed on formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded biopsies and a tissue microarray containing normal skin, AK, SCC in situ, and SCC of different grades.
In comparison to the normal skin, EZH2 expression in actinic keratosiswas increased (p = 0.03). Similarly, EZH2 expression in all of the neoplastic conditions studied (SCC in situ, SCC-WD, SCC-MD and SCC-PD) was greatly increased in comparison to both the normal skin and actinic keratosis (p≤0.001).
EZH2 expression increases incrementally from normal skin to AK and further to SCC, suggesting a role for EZH2 in the progression and differentiation of SCC. EZH2 expression may be used as a diagnostic marker for differentiating SCC from AK or normal skin.
Key wordsactinic keratosis EZH2 skin squamous cell carcinoma
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