Publications & Posters

Decreased concentrations of intracellular signaling proteins in colon cancer patients with BRAF mutations

SCIENTIFIC REPORTS | NOVEMBER 18, 2020

Olsen DA, Thomsen CEB, Andersen RF, Madsen JS, Jakobsen A and Brandslund I.

Sci Rep 10,20113 (2020)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-77109-8

ABSTRACT

The activation of intracellular signaling pathways plays a critical role in cancer pathogenesis. The current study aims to quantify intracellular signaling proteins in localized colon cancer tissue to investigate the prognostic value of these biomarkers and elucidate their possible relations to mutation status. Colon cancer tissue and autologous reference tissue were collected from 176 patients who underwent colon cancer surgery. Assays were developed to quantify ERK, AKT and cyclin d using single-molecule array technology. KRAS/BRAF/PIK3CA mutation status was determined using droplet digital PCR. Patients with BRAF mutations had decreased concentrations of ERK (p = 0.0003), AKT (p = 0.0001) and cyclin d (p = 0.003), while no significant differences were found between patients with KRAS mutations and wild-type patients. None of the investigated proteins were associated with disease-free survival or overall survival when all patients were included. However, when patients were stratified according to mutation status, significant correlations with overall survival were seen for patients with BRAF mutations and AKT (p = 0.002) or ERK (p = 0.03) and for KRAS mutations and cyclin d (p = 0.01). Conclusions: A strong correlation exists between intracellular signaling protein concentrations and mutational BRAF status. Overall survival in colon cancer patients depends on both gene mutation status and signaling protein concentrations.