Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 53, Issue 2, pp 461–466

Functional Expression of μ-Opioid Receptors in the Human Colon Cancer Cell Line, HT-29, and their Localization in Human Colon

  • Gunnar Nylund
  • Ann Pettersson
  • Cecilia Bengtsson
  • Amir Khorram-Manesh
  • Svante Nordgren
  • Dick S. Delbro
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10620-007-9897-y

Cite this article as:
Nylund, G., Pettersson, A., Bengtsson, C. et al. Dig Dis Sci (2008) 53: 461. doi:10.1007/s10620-007-9897-y

Abstract

We have investigated the functional expression of μ-opioid receptors (MORs) in the human colon cancer cell line, HT-29. As revealed by immunocytochemistry, immunoreactivity was present in both the cytoplasm and nuclei of the cells. Challenge with morphine for 24 h (1 nM to 1 μM) barely affected cell proliferation, while the secretion of urokinase type plasminogen activator (a protease involved in invasion/metastasis) was markedly augmented by a concentration of 0.1 μM. Human colon cancer tissue from 14 consecutively operated patients was investigated by immunohistochemistry. MORs were found in the nuclei of colonocytes and immune cells of the lamina propria in tumor-free tissue. In tumor tissue, immunoreactivity was found in the membrane and often in the nuclei of tumor cells. The current findings suggest that morphine administration could affect tumor progression by interfering with, for example, invasive properties. Our demonstration of a nuclear expression of the MORs appears to be a novel finding.

Keywords

Colon cancer HT-29 human colon cancer cell line Immunohistochemistry μ-Opioid receptors Morphine Proliferation Urokinase type plasminogen activator 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gunnar Nylund
    • 1
  • Ann Pettersson
    • 2
    • 3
  • Cecilia Bengtsson
    • 2
  • Amir Khorram-Manesh
    • 1
  • Svante Nordgren
    • 2
  • Dick S. Delbro
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryKungälv HospitalKungälvSweden
  2. 2.Department of SurgerySahlgrenska University HospitalGöteborgSweden
  3. 3.School of Pure and Applied Natural SciencesUniversity of KalmarKalmarSweden