GLUT-1(+)/TKTL1(+) coexpression predicts poor outcome in oral squamous cell carcinoma

Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol. 2014 Jun;117(6):743-53. doi: 10.1016/j.oooo.2014.02.007. Epub 2014 Feb 22.


Objective: Tumor hypoxia is a crucial negative prognostic factor associated with outcome of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC).

Study design: Expression of glucose transporter 1 (GLUT-1) (solute carrier family 2 [facilitated glucose transporter], member 1 [SLC2A1]) was analyzed in OSCC specimen (n = 161) and cancer cell lines by immunohistochemistry and Western blotting. GLUT-1 expression on protein level was correlated with transketolase-like 1 (TKTL1) expression, clinical characteristics, and effect on survival. Subgroup analysis was performed for GLUT-1/TKTL1 coexpression.

Results: GLUT-1 expression was significantly correlated with TKTL1 expression (P < .0001) and recurrence of the tumor (P = .001). Multivariate analysis did not find GLUT-1 expression to be an independent prognostic factor (P = .2478). GLUT-1(+)/TKTL1(+) subgroup showed the worst effect on survival compared with the GLUT-1(-)/TKTL1(-) subgroup (P = .0002).

Conclusions: This study provides evidence that tumors linked with combined enhanced glucose uptake (GLUT-1(+)) and hypoxia-related glucose metabolism (TKTL1(+)) characteristics (GLUT-1(+)/TKTL1(+) coexpression) are associated with shorter survival in OSCC.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism
  • Blotting, Western
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / metabolism*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / pathology
  • Female
  • Glucose Transporter Type 1 / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mouth Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Mouth Neoplasms / pathology
  • Neoplasm Grading
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Analysis
  • Transketolase / metabolism*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Glucose Transporter Type 1
  • Transketolase