S100A4 Is a Strong Negative Prognostic Marker and Potential Therapeutic Target in Adenocarcinoma of the Stomach and Esophagus

Cells. 2022 Mar 21;11(6):1056. doi: 10.3390/cells11061056.


Deregulated Wnt-signaling is a key mechanism driving metastasis in adenocarcinoma of the gastroesophageal junction and stomach (AGE/S). The oncogene S100A4 was identified as a Wnt-signaling target gene and is known to promote metastasis. In this project, we illuminate the role of S100A4 for metastases development and disease prognosis of AGE/S. Five gastric cancer cell lines were assessed for S100A4 expression. Two cell lines with endogenous high S100A4 expression were used for functional phenotyping including analysis of proliferation and migration after stable S100A4 knock-down. The prognostic value of S100A4 was evaluated by analyzing the S100A4 expression of tissue microarrays with samples of 277 patients with AGE/S. S100A4 knock-down induced lower migration in FLO1 and NCI-N87 cells. Treatment with niclosamide in these cells led to partial inhibition of S100A4 and to reduced migration. Patients with high S100A4 expression showed lower 5-year overall and disease-specific survival. In addition, a larger share of patients in the S100A4 high expressing group suffered from metachronous metastasis. This study identifies S100A4 as a negative prognostic marker for patients with AGE/S. The strong correlation between S100A4 expression, metastases development and patient survival might open opportunities to use S100A4 to improve the prognosis of these patients and as a therapeutic target for intervention in this tumor entity.

Keywords: S100A4; esophageal cancer; gastric cancer; metastasis; niclosamide.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma* / metabolism
  • Esophagus / pathology
  • Humans
  • Prognosis
  • S100 Calcium-Binding Protein A4 / genetics
  • S100 Proteins* / genetics
  • S100 Proteins* / metabolism
  • Stomach / pathology


  • S100 Calcium-Binding Protein A4
  • S100 Proteins
  • S100A4 protein, human