Expression of the Receptor for Hyaluronic Acid–Mediated Motility (RHAMM) in Endometrial Cancer is Associated With Adverse Histologic Parameters and Tumor Progression


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Abstract

Endometrial cancer is one of the most common gynecologic malignancies worldwide. Only 2 agents have been approved by Food and Drug Administration for endometrial cancer since 1971. There is a need to identify molecular targets to treat advanced endometrial cancer. The receptor for hyaluronic acid–mediated motility (RHAMM) is upregulated in various types of cancer. Here, we aimed to determine the clinical significance of RHAMM expression in endometrial cancer. Two hundred twenty-five cases of endometrial cancer, including serous and endometrioid types, and 8 cases of normal endometrium were used for studying RHAMM protein levels. The Cancer Genome Atlas database was also queried for RHAMM mRNA expression in endometrial cancer. Increased expression of RHAMM protein was seen in endometrial cancer compared with no or weak expression in normal endometrium. RHAMM expression positively correlated with tumor grade. RHAMM expression was significantly increased in endometrial serous carcinomas, which are high-grade, aggressive types of endometrial cancer, compared with the relatively less aggressive endometrioid carcinomas. RHAMM expression also correlated with the presence of lymphovascular invasion. RHAMM mRNA expression correlated with decreased survival in The Cancer Genome Atlas cohort. Therefore, increased RHAMM expression in endometrial cancer is associated with high-grade tumors and is indicative of more aggressive behavior. These findings suggest RHAMM as a prognostic factor in endometrial cancer and as a potential therapeutic target in advanced endometrial cancer for future studies.

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