Background: Carbonic anhydrase IX (CA9) is a transmembrane glycoprotein related to hypoxia. Increased CA9 expression has been associated with decreased survival and cancer progression and has been targeted as a potential therapy for several cancers, including esophageal cancer. The reported percentages of expression of CA9 in esophageal adenocarcinoma vary, and CA9 expression in precancerous esophageal lesions has not been well studied. Methods: In this study, we investigated CA9 expression in esophageal cancers and in precancerous lesions and explored the association of CA9 expression with prognostic factors and with stem cell and tumorigenesis-related markers including BMI1, cyclin E, ki67, MCM4 and MCM7 expression. Previously constructed tissue microarrays consisting of samples of 7 tissue types (columnar cell metaplasia, Barrett esophagus, low- and high-grade dysplasia, esophageal adenocarcinoma, squamous epithelium, and squamous cell carcinoma) were used for the immunostaining of CA9, BMI1, cyclin E, Ki67, MCM4 and MCM7. Results and discussion: CA9 high expression occurred more frequently in glandular mucosa with or without dysplasia than in squamous epithelium or squamous cell carcinoma. Survival duration of esophageal adenocarcinoma did not significantly differ between patients with high CA9 expression and those with low expression. High CA9 expression is significantly associated with BMI1, cyclin E, Ki67, MCM4 and MCM7 expression. Conclusions: High CA9 expression may be related to the acidic environment caused by gastroesophageal reflux disease in the gastroesophageal junction and associated with tumorigenesis through BMI1, MCM4 and MCM7.
- Barrett's esophagus
- Esophageal adenocarcinoma
- Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease