Enhanced Expression of the Type II Transforming Growth Factor /J Receptor in Human Pancreatic Cancer Cells without Alteration of Type III Receptor Expression

Helmut Friess, Yoichiro Yamanaka, Michael S. Kobrin, Rae Lynn Baldwin, Murray Korc

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

159 Scopus citations


We have recently found that human pancreatic adenocarcinomas exhibit strong immunostaining for the three mammalian transforming growth factor p (TGF-/3) isoforms. These important growth-regulating polypeptides bind to a number of proteins, including the type I TGF-/3 receptor (T/3R-I), type II TGF-/3 receptor (T0R-II), and the type III TGF-/5 receptor (T/3R-III). In the present study we sought to determine whether T/3R-II and T0R-III expression is altered in pancreatic cancer. Northern blot analysis indicated that, by comparison with the normal pancreas, pancreatic adenocarcinomas exhibited a 4.6-fold increase (P < 0.01) in mRNA levels encoding T/3R-II. In contrast, mRNA levels encoding TβR-III were not increased. In situ hybridization showed that TβR-II mRNA was expressed in the majority of cancer cells, whereas mRNA grains encoding TβR-III were detectable in only a few cancer cells and were present mainly in the surrounding stroma. These findings suggest that enhanced levels of TβR-II may have a role in regulating human pancreatic cancer cell growth, while TβR-III may function in the extracellular matrix.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2704-2707
Number of pages4
JournalCancer Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 1993


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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