Mesothelin expression correlates with prolonged patient survival in gastric cancer

J Surg Oncol. 2012 Feb;105(2):195-9. doi: 10.1002/jso.22024. Epub 2011 Jul 20.


Purpose: Mesothelin expression is found in normal mesothelium, and cancerous mesothelin has been recently reported in ovarian and pancreas cancer. The clinicopathological implications of mesothelin expression have been discussed with respect to antitumor immunological mechanisms. However, there is no information on mesothelin expression in gastric cancer. The purpose of the current study is to identify the clinical significance of mesothelin in gastric cancer.

Experimental design: A total of 212 gastric cancer patients who received R0 gastrectomy at Kagoshima University Hospital were enrolled in this study. Mesothelin was detected immunohistochemically and visualized by ABC method. Intensity of cancerous mesothelin was divided into two categories (0-50%: negative group and 51-100%: positive group).

Results: Mesothelin expression was detected in the cellular membrane. In accordance with the previous evaluation, patients were divided into two groups [mesothelin-positive group: 124 (59%) and mesothelin-negative group: 88 (41%)]. The mesothelin-positive group had significantly more nodal involvement and significantly deeper tumor invasion than the mesothelin-negative group (P < 0.05). However, by analysis confined to the 117 advanced gastric cancer patients, the 5-year survival rate of the mesothelin-positive group was 55%, which was significantly better than that of the mesothelin-negative group. Multivariate analysis revealed that mesothelin expression is one of the independent prognostic factors of gastric cancer.

Conclusion: Cancerous mesothelin expression in gastric cancer may be a useful tool to predict patient survival.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • GPI-Linked Proteins / metabolism*
  • Gastrectomy
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Stomach Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / pathology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / surgery
  • Survival Rate


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • GPI-Linked Proteins
  • mesothelin