T-cadherin is a unique receptor of adiponectin, which plays a critical role in various angiogenesis. In the present study, T-cadherin expression in tumor vessels of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and, subsequently, the molecular mechanism, which induced T-cadherin expression in sinusoidal endothelial cells were investigated. Sinusoidal endothelium in nontumorous liver, chronic hepatitis, or liver cirrhosis expressed little or no T-cadherin. By contrast, T-cadherin was found in intratumoral capillary endothelial cells of 34 out of 63 HCC specimens. In positive cases, focal T-cadherin expression was found in well-differentiated HCC, whereas diffuse and intense T-cadherin expression was observed in poorly differentiated HCC specimens. T-cadherin was much expressed in intratumoral capillary endothelial cells in a less differentiated HCC region than that in a well-differentiated region in five specimens, in which various differentiated HCC components were coexistent. In a double-cell chamber assay, fibroblast growth factor-2 appeared to have a critical role to induce T-cadherin in cultured liver sinusoidal endothelial cells. The present finding indicated that T-cadherin was selectively expressed in intratumoral capillary endothelial cells of many HCCs, increasingly expressed as tumor progression, and T-cadherin may have a positive role in angiogenesis of HCC. In addition, cross talk between the signal pathways mediated by fibroblast growth factor-2 and adiponectin was suggested.
- Hepatocellular carcinoma
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology