Int J Biol Sci 2011; 7(6):769-781. doi:10.7150/ijbs.7.769 This issue

Research Paper

Investigating the Pathogenic Role of PADI4 in Oesophageal Cancer

Xiaotian Chang, Xiuli Hou, Jihong Pan, Kehua Fang, Lin Wang, Jinxiang Han

Research Center For Medicinal Biotechnology Center, Shandong Academy of Medicinal Sciences. National Laboratory for Biotech-Drugs Ministry of Health & Provincial Laboratory for Modern Medicine and Technology of Shandong. Jinan, Shandong, 250062. P. R. China.

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Chang X, Hou X, Pan J, Fang K, Wang L, Han J. Investigating the Pathogenic Role of PADI4 in Oesophageal Cancer. Int J Biol Sci 2011; 7(6):769-781. doi:10.7150/ijbs.7.769. Available from

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PADI4 post-translationally converts peptidylarginine to citrulline. PADI4 can disrupt the apoptotic process via the citrullination of histone H3 in the promoter of p53-target genes. The current study focused on PADI4 expression in various subtypes of oesophageal carcinoma (EC) by immunohistochemistry, western blotting and real time PCR. The study also investigated the effect of bile acid deoxycholate (DCA) on PADI4 expression in Eca-109 cells that originated from EC. Apoptosis and DCA-induced toxicity were analyzed by TUNEL, MTT assay and flow cytometry. Additionally, the present study investigated the correlation between single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in PADI4 gene and EC risk in Chinese population using Illumina GoldenGate assay. Compared with paraneoplastic tissues, the transcriptional and translational levels of PADI4 were significantly elevated in oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC, n=9) and oesophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC, n=5) tissues. Immunolabeling detected expression of PADI4 in ESCC tissues (98.56%, n=139), EAC samples (87.5%, n=16) and oesophageal small cell undifferentiated carcinoma (91.7%, n=12) but not in normal tissues (0%, n=16). Furthermore, PADI4 levels is positively correlated with the pathological classification of ESCC (p=0.009). PADI4 expression levels were consistent with the number of apoptotic cells in the induced Eca-109 cells. rs10437048 [OR= 0.012831; 95% CI, 0.001746~0.094278; p=1.556×10-12] were significantly associated with decreased risk of EC, whereas rs41265997 [OR=12.7; 95% CI, 0.857077~33.207214; p=3.896×10-8] were significantly associated with increased risk of EC. rs41265997 in exon 3 of PADI4 gene is non-synonymous and converts ACG to ATG resulting in a threonine /methionine conversion at position 274 of the protein. Haplotypes GC that carries the variant alleles for rs2501796 and rs2477134 was significantly associated with increased risk of EC (frequency=0.085, p=0.0256, OR=2.7). The results suggest that PADI4 expression is related to the tumorigenic process of EC and the DCA-induced apoptosis. The PADI4 gene may be a valid EC susceptibility gene.

Keywords: Peptidyl arginine deaminase type 4 (PADI4/PAD4), oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), oesophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC), deoxycholate (DCA), apoptosis, genotyping, susceptibility, haplotype.