Experimental and molecular pathology

The relationship between semaphorin 3C and microvessel density in the progression of breast and oral neoplasia.

PMID 25910410


This study aimed to identify the expression of semaphorin 3C (SEMA3C) in the normal-metastatic spectrum of breast and oral cancers, and correlate expression with microvessel density (MVD, CD31), a surrogate marker of angiogenesis. Histological analysis revealed that SEMA3C expression was reduced in the development of oral cancer from normal oral tissue (P<0.0001) and expression was inversely correlated with MVD (r=-0.394, P=0.05). In contrast, SEMA3C expression increased in the transition from normal to invasive breast disease in epithelial/tumour cells (P=0.001) and endothelial cells (P=0.006), with both correlating weakly with MVD (r=0.35, p=0.03 and r=0.243, p=0.041 respectively). Furthermore, histological analysis of a breast cancer tissue microarray revealed a weak positive correlation with tumour grade (r=0.305, P=<0.001) and biological phenotype (r=0.237, p=0.004) with tumour cell expression of SEMA3C highest in triple negative and ER-, PR-, HER2+ subtypes. These data suggest that SEMA3C expression is differentially regulated in the development and progression of breast versus oral neoplasia, and that increased expression of SEMA3C may be modulating breast cancer progression and angiogenesis, and could represent a biomarker of metastatic disease.