APC expression in normal human tissues

J Pathol. 1997 Apr;181(4):426-33. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1096-9896(199704)181:4<426::AID-PATH768>3.0.CO;2-T.


The tumour suppressor gene APC codes for a 2843-amino acid protein whose precise functions are still poorly understood. This paper describes the development of two new antisera to APC (to amino- and carboxy-terminal epitopes) which permit localization of the protein by immunohistochemistry in archival paraffin sections. The protein is expressed in a wide variety of normal epithelial tissues. Its distribution frequently coincides with the location of post-replicative cells within tissues. Staining patterns demonstrate that the APC protein, although often diffusely cytoplasmic in distribution, may also accumulate in the apical and immediately subapical regions, or along the lateral margins of certain cells. These results indicate that APC is significant in many tissues in addition to the colorectal epithelium. They are compatible with a function related to signalling at the adherens junction and possibly with other more complex roles in cells committed to terminal differentiation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli Protein
  • Antibody Specificity
  • Blotting, Western
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / genetics
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins / immunology
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins / metabolism*
  • Epithelium / metabolism
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes, APC*
  • Humans
  • Immune Sera
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli Protein
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins
  • Immune Sera