Differential expression of cytokeratin mRNA and protein in normal prostate, prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia, and invasive carcinoma

Yongmin Yang, Junshan Hao, Xiangdang Liu, Bruce Dalkin, Ray B. Nagle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


The expression of cytokeratin (CK) mRNA for CK5, -8, -14, -16, and -19 was investigated in normal prostate, prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN) lesions, and invasive carcinoma us ing in situ hybridization. Protein localization was carried out in adjacent sections using immunohistochemistry, and correlated with mRNA expression. Snap-frozen human prostate samples including 22 examples of normal glands, 20 cases of PIN lesions, and 12 cases of invasive carcinoma were examined. CK5 and -14 mRNA and protein were prominently expressed only in the basal cells of normal glands and PIN lesions. CK14 mRNA was absent in the luminal cells of the most of the PIN lesions but was seen at a low level in some PIN lesions. CK14 protein was not detected in any PIN lesion, suggesting that, if the cell that makes up the PIN lesions is derived from a basal cell, CK14 translation is depressed although a low level of CK14 mRNA may persist. CK8 mRNA and protein were constitutively expressed in all epithelia of normal and abnormal prostate tissues. CK19 mRNA and protein were persistently expressed in both basal and luminal cells of the tubular portion of normal glands as well as PIN lesions, but were expressed heterogeneously in both basal and luminal cells of normal alveoli. CK16 mRNA was expressed in a similar pattern as CK19, but CK16 protein was not detected either in normal or in abnormal prostate tissues. In conclusion, the expression of CK19 in PIN lesions is similar to its tubular expression and would support an origin of PIN lesions from this structure rather than the alveolar portion of the glands. The similar cytokeratin expression between PIN lesions and invasive carcinonta further supports the concept that PIN is a precursor lesion of invasive carcinoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)693-704
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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