, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 437-446
Date: 09 Feb 2013

Expression Pattern of Id Proteins in Medulloblastoma

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Inhibitor of DNA binding or inhibitor of differentiation (Id) proteins are up regulated in a variety of neoplasms, particularly in association with high-grade, poorly differentiated tumors, while differentiated tissues show little or no Id expression. The four Id genes are members of the helix-loop-helix (HLH) family of transcription factors and act as negative regulators of transcription by binding to and sequestering HLH complexes. We tested the hypothesis that Id proteins are overexpressed in medulloblastoma by performing immunohistochemistry using a medulloblastoma tissue microarray with 45 unique medulloblastoma and 11 normal control cerebella, and antibodies specific for Id1, Id2, Id3, and Id4. A semi-quantitative staining score that took staining intensity and the proportion of immunoreactive cells into account was used. Id1 was not detected in normal cerebella or in medulloblastoma cells, but 78 % of tumors showed strong Id1 expression in endothelial nuclei of tumor vessels. Id2 expression was scant in normal cerebella and increased in medulloblastoma (median staining score: 4). Id3 expression was noted in some neurons of the developing cerebellar cortex, but it was markedly up regulated in medulloblastoma (median staining score: 12) and in tumor endothelial cells. Id4 was not expressed in normal cerebella or in tumor cells. Id2 or Id3 overexpression drove proliferation in medulloblastoma cell lines by altering the expression of critical cell cycle regulatory proteins in favor of cell proliferation. This study shows that Id1 expression in endothelial cells may contribute to angiogenic processes and that increased expression of Id2 and Id3 in medulloblastoma is potentially involved in tumor cell proliferation and survival.