Background: Recently, the microRNA-200 family was reported to affect cancer biology by regulating epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT). Especially, the expression of miR-200c has been shown to be associated with upregulating the expression of E-cadherin, a gene known to be involved in pancreatic cancer behavior. However, the significance of miR-200c in pancreatic cancer is unknown.
Methods: In the present study, we investigated the relationship between E-cadherin and miR-200c expression in a panel of 14 pancreatic cancer cell lines and in macro-dissected formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue samples obtained from 99 patients who underwent pancreatectomy for pancreatic cancer. We also investigated the effects of miR-200c on the proliferation and invasion of pancreatic cancer cells.
Results: We found that patients with high levels of miR-200c expression had significantly better survival rates than those with low levels of miR-200c expression. We also found a remarkably strong correlation between the levels of miR-200c and E-cadherin expression.
Conclusions: These data indicate that miR-200c may play a role in the pancreatic cancer biology and may be a novel marker for the prognosis of pancreatic cancer.