Background: Lysyl oxidase catalyzes a key step in the cross-linking of collagen and elastin in the extracellular matrix. Recent studies have documented differential lysyl oxidase expression in the stromal reaction to colon, breast, prostate, and lung cancer. The present study was undertaken to test the hypothesis that lysyl oxidase mRNA and protein expression decrease with advancing tumor stage in patients with bronchogenic carcinoma.
Methods: Tumor specimens were obtained from 17 patients undergoing resection for bronchogenic carcinoma. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to determine steady-state lysyl oxidase mRNA expression, and protein expression was qualitatively assessed by immunohistochemistry.
Results: Real-time polymerase chain reaction studies documented a 3.4-fold graded decrease in lysyl oxidase mRNA levels as tumors progressed from stage I to IV. Similar qualitative changes in lysyl oxidase protein expression were demonstrated by immunohistochemistry.
Conclusions: These results support the hypothesis that variations in lysyl oxidase expression may correlate with the invasive and metastatic potential of bronchogenic carcinoma.