• Open Access

Nucleostemin affects the proliferation but not differentiation of oral squamous cell carcinoma cells


To whom correspondence should be addressed.
E-mail: takaito@kumamoto-u.ac.jp


Nucleostemin (NS) has been reported as essential for stem and cancer cell proliferation. To investigate the significance of NS in oral squamous cell carcinomas (OSCCs), we examined NS expression in neoplastic tissue of the tongue and in OSCC cell lines. Nucleostemin expression in the histological samples showed positive correlation with Ki-67 expression. Furthermore, NS expression was associated with cellular proliferation in OSCC cell lines using siRNA, which upregulated p27, a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor. Regarding OSCC differentiation, NS expression did not influence cornification or oral epithelial differentiation markers such as involucrin and cytokeratin19. Thus, NS is widely expressed in normal and neoplastic oral epithelial tissues, and is likely a marker of proliferation. (Cancer Sci 2011; 102: 1418–1423)