BMC cancer

Heterogeneity analysis of Metastasis Associated in Colon Cancer 1 (MACC1) for survival prognosis of colorectal cancer patients: a retrospective cohort study.

PMID 25884643


Metastasis of colorectal cancer (CRC) is directly linked to patient survival. We previously identified the novel gene Metastasis Associated in Colon Cancer 1 (MACC1) in CRC and demonstrated its importance as metastasis inducer and prognostic biomarker. Here, we investigate the geographic expression pattern of MACC1 in colorectal adenocarcinoma and tumor buds in correlation with clinicopathological and molecular features for improvement of survival prognosis. We performed geographic MACC1 expression analysis in tumor center, invasive front and tumor buds on whole tissue sections of 187 well-characterized CRCs by immunohistochemistry. MACC1 expression in each geographic zone was analyzed with Mismatch repair (MMR)-status, BRAF/KRAS-mutations and CpG-island methylation. MACC1 was significantly overexpressed in tumor tissue as compared to normal mucosa (p < 0.001). Within colorectal adenocarcinomas, a significant increase of MACC1 from tumor center to front (p = 0.0012) was detected. MACC1 was highly overexpressed in 55% tumor budding cells. Independent of geographic location, MACC1 predicted advanced pT and pN-stages, high grade tumor budding, venous and lymphatic invasion (p < 0.05). High MACC1 expression at the invasive front was decisive for prediction of metastasis (p = 0.0223) and poor survival (p = 0.0217). The geographic pattern of MACC1 did not correlate with MMR-status, BRAF/KRAS-mutations or CpG-island methylation. MACC1 is differentially expressed in CRC. At the invasive front, MACC1 expression predicts best aggressive clinicopathological features, tumor budding, metastasis formation and poor survival outcome.