Evaluation of a Hypoxia Regulated Gene Panel in Ovarian Cancer

Amanda F. Baker, Scott W. Malm, Ritu Pandey, Cindy Laughren, Haiyan Cui, Denise Roe, Setsuko K. Chambers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


A panel of nine hypoxia regulated genes, selected from a previously published fifty gene panel, was investigated for its ability to predict hypoxic ovarian cancer phenotypes. All nine genes including vascular endothelial growth factor A, glucose transporter 1, phosphoglycerate mutase 1, lactate dehydrogenase A, prolyl 4-hydroxylase, alpha-polypeptide 1, adrenomedullin, N-myc downstream regulated 1, aldolase A, and carbonic anhydrase 9 were upregulated in the HEY and OVCAR-3 human ovarian cell lines cultured in vitro under hypoxic compared to normoxic conditions as measured by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). The gene panel was also elevated in HEY xenograft tumor tissue compared to HEY cells cultured in normoxia. The HEY xenograft tissue demonstrated heterogeneous positive immunohistochemical staining for the exogenous hypoxia biomarker pimonidazole, and the hypoxia regulated protein carbonic anhydrase IX. A quantitative nuclease protection assay (qNPA) was developed which included the nine hypoxia regulated genes. The qNPA assay provided similar results to those obtained using qRT-PCR for cultured cell lines. The qNPA assay was also evaluated using paraffin embedded fixed tissues including a set of five patient matched primary and metastatic serous cancers and four normal ovaries. In this small sample set the average gene expression was higher in primary and metastatic cancer tissue compared to normal ovaries for the majority of genes investigated. This study supports further evaluation by qNPA of this gene panel as an alternative or complimentary method to existing protein biomarkers to identify ovarian cancers with a hypoxic phenotype.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-56
Number of pages12
JournalCancer Microenvironment
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 22 2015


  • Hypoxia regulated gene panel
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Tumor microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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