E-cadherin and alpha-, beta- and gamma-catenin expression in prostate cancers: correlation with tumour invasion

Br J Cancer. 1999 Apr;79(11-12):1879-83. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6690299.


The E-cadherin-catenin complex plays an important role in establishing and maintaining intercellular connections and morphogenesis and reduced expression of its constituent molecules is associated with invasion and metastasis. In the present study, we examined E-cadherin and alpha-, beta- and gamma-catenin levels in tumour tissues obtained by radical prostatectomy in order to investigate the relationship with histopathological tumour invasion. Immunohistochemical findings for 45 prostate cancer specimens demonstrated aberrant expression of each molecule to be associated with dedifferentiation and, in addition, alteration of staining patterns for the three types of catenin was significantly correlated with capsular but not lymphatic or vascular invasion. The data thus suggest that three types of catenin may be useful predictive markers for biological aggressiveness of prostate cancer.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cadherins / biosynthesis*
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Desmoplakins
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Prostatectomy
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Trans-Activators*
  • alpha Catenin
  • beta Catenin
  • gamma Catenin


  • CTNNA1 protein, human
  • CTNNB1 protein, human
  • Cadherins
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins
  • Desmoplakins
  • JUP protein, human
  • Trans-Activators
  • alpha Catenin
  • beta Catenin
  • gamma Catenin