Published online Sep 26, 2022. doi: 10.12998/wjcc.v10.i27.9657
Peer-review started: May 17, 2022
First decision: June 16, 2022
Revised: June 30, 2022
Accepted: August 21, 2022
Article in press: August 21, 2022
Published online: September 26, 2022
Sex determining region Y-box 2 (SOX2) can promote squamous cell carcinoma (SSC) because it regulates the migration and invasion of several different types of squamous carcinoma cells. However, few studies have examined the prognostic value of SOX2 and its effect on the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in esophageal SSC (ESCC), a cancer characterized by high invasion and rapid metastasis.
To verify the relationship of SOX2 and the EMT in ESCC and determine the prognostic value and significance of SOX2 and protein markers of the EMT in ESCC.
One hundred and eighty-five postsurgical ESCC patients were retrospectively examined. Immunohistochemistry was used to detect SOX2, E-cadherin, and vimentin in ESCC tissues. The chi-square test was used to determine the relationships of the expression of these proteins with clinical data. Kaplan-Meier survival curves were used to evaluate factors associated with overall survival (OS).
SOX2 and vimentin had high expression in ESCC tissues and correlated with the depth of local carcinoma invasion. SOX2 expression had positive correlations with tumor size, vimentin expression, and the EMT, and a negative correlation with E-cadherin expression. Expression of SOX2 and vimentin had negative correlations with OS. SOX2 expression was an independent prognostic risk factor for poor OS in patients with ESCC.
SOX2 expression was an independent risk factor for OS in patients with ESCC and its expression had a positive correlation with the expression of vimentin, a classic marker of the EMT. SOX2 promoted the migration and invasion of ESCC, and this may related to its effect on vimentin in promoting the EMT.
Core Tip: Sex determining region Y-box 2 (SOX2) functions in the pathogenesis of squamous cell carcinoma (SSC) by driving the increase of tumor size and invasion, and is also associated with the expression of β-catenin and the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). Our examination of the role of SOX2 in esophageal SSC (ESCC) indicated that its expression had a positive correlation with vimentin expression, an established marker of the EMT. SOX2 expression was also associated the migration and invasion of ESCC, and this may be related to the upregulation of vimentin and the desreased expression of E-cadherin, which promote the EMT. SOX2 expression was an independent risk factor for poor OS in patients with ESCC.