Funding sources This study was supported by LabCorp.
Neuropilin-2 gene expression correlates with malignant progression in cutaneous melanoma
Article first published online: 11 JUN 2014
© 2013 British Association of Dermatologists
British Journal of Dermatology
Volume 171, Issue 2, pages 403–408, August 2014
How to Cite
Rossi, M., Tuck, J., Kim, O.-J., Panova, I., Symanowski, J.T., Mahalingam, M., Riker, A.I., Alani, R.M. and Ryu, B. (2014), Neuropilin-2 gene expression correlates with malignant progression in cutaneous melanoma. British Journal of Dermatology, 171: 403–408. doi: 10.1111/bjd.12801
Conflicts of interest LabCorp has licensed IP around this technology (U.S. pat. 08299216). R.M.A. and B.R. receive sponsored research funding and royalties on this license through Johns Hopkins University.
- Issue published online: 18 AUG 2014
- Article first published online: 11 JUN 2014
- Accepted manuscript online: 20 DEC 2013 08:10AM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 16 DEC 2013
It is currently not possible to predict the metastatic potential of early-stage melanoma lesions by histological examination alone; however, a significant number of thin melanomas will progress over time to advanced disease. Molecular biomarkers that could identify patients with melanoma at high risk at the time of original diagnosis would contribute significantly to improved patient outcomes and increased survival. Neuropilin-2 (NRP2), a cell surface receptor involved in tumour-associated angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis, has recently been shown to be expressed in melanoma.
To evaluate the potential value of NRP2 gene transcript levels as biomarkers for malignant melanoma progression.
We measured NRP2 gene expression in a panel of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue specimens consisting of naevi, primary melanomas and metastatic melanomas using quantitative reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction technique.
NRP2 levels are clearly segregated among the groups of naevi, primary and metastatic melanoma samples with a statistical trend towards increasing NRP2 gene expression correlating with disease progression. Logistic regression analysis reveals that the probability of malignant progression increases with elevated levels of NRP2 (odds ratio of 2·60 with confidence interval 1·29–5·21). Within the group of primary melanomas, there is a positive correlation (r = 0·823) between NRP2 expression and Breslow depth. This correlation was validated in an independent sample set of patients with melanoma.
This preliminary study strongly supports the significance of NRP2 as a useful biomarker for malignant progression of melanoma, which may be useful for early identification of patients with melanoma at high risk.