Cdc7 overexpression is an independent prognostic marker and a potential therapeutic target in colorectal cancer

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Abstract

Background: Cdc7 is a widely expressed protein kinase implicated in cell division, cell cycle checkpoint mechanisms and cancer progression. Recently, it has been suggested as a target for anti-cancer therapy. Methods: To determine the relationship of Cdc7 protein expression with tumor phenotype, molecular features and prognosis, 1800 colorectal carcinomas were analyzed by immunohistochemistry on a tissue microarray. Results: Cdc7 expression was considered negative in 33.6 %, weak in 57.2 % and strong in 9.2 % of 1711 interpretable CRCs. Loss of Cdc7 expression was significantly associated with high tumor stage (p < 0.0001) and high tumor grade (p = 0.0077), but was unrelated to the nodal status (p = 0.5957). Moreover, a link between Cdc7 expression and the tubular histological tumor type was seen (p < 0.0001). p53 and Cdc7 expression were significantly linked to each other (p = 0.0013). In a multivariate survival analysis, strong Cdc7 expression of CRC was an independent marker of improved patient survival (p = 0.0031). Conclusion: Our data show that Cdc7 is highly expressed in CRC and a potential therapeutic target in a subset of cancers with high p53 expression. Moreover, our findings strongly argue for a clinical utility of Cdc7 immunostaining as an independent prognostic biomarker in colorectal cancer enabling to select patients for adjuvant treatment.

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Melling, N., Muth, J., Simon, R., Bokemeyer, C., Terracciano, L., Sauter, G., … Marx, A. H. (2015). Cdc7 overexpression is an independent prognostic marker and a potential therapeutic target in colorectal cancer. Diagnostic Pathology, 10(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13000-015-0360-7

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