Immortalized ovarian surface epithelial cells acquire tumorigenicity by Acrogranin gene overexpression

Oncol Rep. 2007 Feb;17(2):329-33.


Malignant transformation is caused by multi-step genetic mutations, and growth factors are believed to play important roles in developing and maintaining malignant phenotype. However, there is no direct evidence that a specific growth factor contributes to malignant transformation of phenotypically normal cells. In order to assess the function of Acrogranin (also known as granulin epithelial precursor; GEP) in ovarian carcinogenesis, ovarian surface epithelial (OSE) cells, which are supposed to be the origin of primary ovarian epithelial cancer, were transfected with combined genes of hTERT, SV40 LT, and Acrogranin. Introduction of hTERT and SV40 LT was sufficient for immortalizing OSE cells but not enough for tumor formation in nude mice. In contrast, transfection and overexpression of Acrogranin in immortalized OSE cells showed augmented clonogenicity in soft agar and obvious tumorigenicity in nude mice. This is the first study showing evidence that a specific growth factor plays a direct role in malignant transformation in ovarian cancer development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic* / genetics
  • Epithelial Cells / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic*
  • Granulins
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / genetics*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Nude
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / genetics
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Ovary / metabolism*
  • Progranulins
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Time Factors


  • Granulins
  • Grn protein, mouse
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Progranulins
  • RNA, Messenger