Endocrine Pathology

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 222–230 | Cite as

LIMD2 Is Overexpressed in BRAF V600E-Positive Papillary Thyroid Carcinomas and Matched Lymph Node Metastases

  • Maria José Carregosa Pinheiro dos Santos
  • André Uchimura Bastos
  • Vitor Rodrigues da Costa
  • Rosana Delcelo
  • Susan Chow Lindsey
  • Gabriel Avelar Colozza-Gama
  • Hongzhuang Peng
  • Frank J. RauscherIII
  • Gisele Oler
  • Janete Maria CeruttiEmail author


We previously described that LIM domain containing 2 (LIMD2) overexpression was closely correlated with metastatic process in papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC). We here evaluated the expression of LIMD2 in a series of non-metastatic and metastatic PTC and their matched lymph node metastases via immunohistochemistry. LIMD2 was expressed in 74 (81%) of primary PTC and 35 (95%) of lymph node metastases. Sub-analysis performed in 37 matched samples demonstrated that in four cases, LIMD2 is expressed in lymph node metastases, while it is not expressed in primary tumors. Moreover, in eight cases, the staining intensity of LIMD2 was stronger in the patient-matched lymph node metastases than in the primary tumors. Next, the expression of LIMD2 was correlated with clinical pathological parameters and BRAF V600E and RET/PTC mutational status. The expression of LIMD2 in primary tumors was correlated with the presence of BRAF V600E mutation (P = 0.0338). Western blot analysis in thyroid cell lines demonstrated that LIMD2 is expressed in two PTC cell lines, while it is not expressed in normal thyroid and follicular thyroid carcinoma cell lines. Importantly, its expression was higher in a PTC cell line that harbors BRAF V600E mutation than in a PTC cell line that harbors RET/PTC1. The available genomic profiling data generated by The Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network confirmed that LIMD2 expression is higher in BRAF-like PTC samples. Our data suggest that LIMD2 may play an important role in the metastatic process of PTC, predominantly in BRAF V600E-positive tumors.


LIMD2 Papillary thyroid cancer Metastases BRAF V600E and RET/PTC 


Authors’ Contribution

M.J.C.P.S. performed IHC staining, BRAF V600E mutational status, analyzed and interpreted data, and wrote the manuscript draft. A.U.B. performed BRAF and RET/PTC mutational screening and Western blot analysis, analyzed and interpreted data, prepared all figures, and wrote the manuscript. V.R.C. performed RNA extraction and helped with the RET/PTC screening. R.D. revised all slides and analyzed and interpreted the IHC data. S.C.L. revised the clinical data from all patients. G.A.C.G. helped with the BRAF mutational analysis. H.P. and F.R.J. produced the antibodies, interpreted the data, and revised the manuscript. G.O. was responsible for the sample selection, analyzed and interpreted data, and revised the manuscript. J.M.C. designed the experiments, analyzed the data, revised the manuscript critically for important intellectual content, edited the manuscript, and coordinated the study. All authors reviewed the results and approved the final version of the manuscript.

Funding Information

The study was supported by research grants (2014/06570-6) from The São Paulo State Research Foundation (FAPESP) and grant (470441/2013-5) from The Brazilian Research Council (CNPq). A.U.B. (2012/06221-6), G.O. (2012/17545-7), and V.R.C. (2016/25127-1) are FAPESP scholars. J.M.C. is an investigator with the CNPq.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

The study was conducted under the approval of the Review Boards and Research Ethical Committees of UNIFESP (1309/11).

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

12022_2018_9526_Fig4_ESM.gif (8 kb)
Supplementary Fig 1.

LIMD2 expression is higher in BRAF-like samples, according to TCGA. LIMD2 normalized expression data from TCGA research network (paper) was compared in BRAF-like and RAS-like samples. Expression data was normalized by subtracting the mean value of each genomic data from each sample (columns by mean), as suggested by UCSC Cancer Genomics Browser ( (GIF 8 kb)

12022_2018_9526_MOESM1_ESM.tif (181 kb)
High Resolution Image (TIFF 181 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria José Carregosa Pinheiro dos Santos
    • 1
  • André Uchimura Bastos
    • 1
  • Vitor Rodrigues da Costa
    • 1
  • Rosana Delcelo
    • 2
  • Susan Chow Lindsey
    • 3
  • Gabriel Avelar Colozza-Gama
    • 1
  • Hongzhuang Peng
    • 4
  • Frank J. RauscherIII
    • 4
  • Gisele Oler
    • 1
  • Janete Maria Cerutti
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Genetic Bases of Thyroid Tumors Laboratory, Department of Morphology and GeneticsUniversidade Federal de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Department of PathologyUniversidade Federal de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  3. 3.Laboratory of Molecular and Translational Endocrinology, Department of MedicineUniversidade Federal de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  4. 4.The Wistar InstituteUniversity of Pennsylvania and Veterans Affairs Medical CenterPhiladelphiaUSA

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