Introduction/Background*LIMA1 or EPLIN is a cytoskeleton-associated protein involved in cytoskeleton regulation and dynamics, by inhibiting actin filament depolymerization and cross-linking filaments. The role of LIMA1 has been investigated in several malignant diseases including prostate, esophageal, breast and ovarian cancer. Its expression is often lost or aberrant in tumor cells leading to aggressive phenotypes. The aim of this study was to systematically assess the expression of LIMA1 in cervical cancer.
Methodology Immunohistochemical analysis using anti-EPLIN antibody was performed in 22 cases of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia, 14 cases of adenocarcinoma including one case with mucinous and one case with endometrioid adenocarcinoma, 5 cases of adenosquamous carcinoma, 25 cases of squamous cell carcinoma and 11 normal samples. The correlation of LIMA1 aberrant expression and disease progression was performed using the medical records of patients. Clinical samples of normal and tumor tissues were surgically excised, following an informed consent from all participants.
Result(s)*The levels of LIMA1 expression were low for healthy specimens, and limited to the cells of the basal membrane. LIMA1 expression showed a slight increase in the cases of intraepithelial neoplasia; however, it was quite low in cells displaying a HPV cytopathic effect (koilocytosis). On the contrary, the LIMA1 levels of both cytoplasmic and cell-membrane staining were significantly increased in the cases of adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. Lastly, LIMA1 was highly expressed in undifferentiated, non-keratinizing, squamous cell carcinoma associated with poor prognosis.
Conclusion*Our results demonstrate that LIMA1 is differentially expressed not only in normal and cervical cancer tissues, but also in precancerous lesions and malignant cervical neoplasia, highlighting its role in cervical cancer progression and its potential exploitation as a prognostic factor.
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