Expression of B7-H4 in blood of patients with gastric cancer predicts tumor progression and prognosis

J Surg Oncol. 2010 Dec 1;102(7):748-52. doi: 10.1002/jso.21722.


Background and objectives: B7-H4 is a novel molecular B7 ligand that plays an important role as a negative regulator of the T cell-mediated immune response. However, the clinical significance of B7-H4 expression in gastric cancer remains uncertain. Here, we assessed B7-H4 expression in blood of patients with gastric cancer to determine whether or not it can predict tumor progression and prognosis.

Methods: We measured B7-H4 mRNA expression by quantitative RT-PCR in five gastric cell lines as well as in blood specimens from 94 patients with gastric cancer and from 22 healthy volunteers.

Results: Significantly more B7-H4 mRNA copies were found in gastric cell lines and in blood from patients with gastric cancer than in blood from healthy volunteers (P < 0.0001 and P < 0.0001, respectively). B7-H4 expressed in 71 (75.5%) of 94 patients with gastric cancer significantly correlated with depth of tumor invasion, lymph node metastasis, and overall stage (P = 0.006, P = 0.001, and P < 0.001, respectively). The 5-year survival rate was significantly lower in patients with than without B7-H4 expression (P = 0.04).

Conclusions: The evaluation of B7-H4 expression in blood is a useful tool for predicting the progression of gastric cancer and prognosis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • B7-1 Antigen / blood*
  • B7-1 Antigen / genetics
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / blood*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Gastrectomy
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms / blood*
  • Liver Neoplasms / secondary
  • Liver Neoplasms / surgery
  • Lung Neoplasms / blood*
  • Lung Neoplasms / secondary
  • Lung Neoplasms / surgery
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Stomach Neoplasms / blood*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / pathology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / surgery
  • Survival Rate
  • V-Set Domain-Containing T-Cell Activation Inhibitor 1


  • B7-1 Antigen
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • RNA, Messenger
  • V-Set Domain-Containing T-Cell Activation Inhibitor 1
  • VTCN1 protein, human