Tumor Biology

, Volume 33, Issue 6, pp 2289–2298 | Cite as

PRKAR1A overexpression is associated with increased ECPKA autoantibody in liver fluke-associated cholangiocarcinoma: application for assessment of the risk group

  • Watcharin Loilome
  • Sasithorn Yooyuen
  • Nisana Namwat
  • Paiboon Sithithaworn
  • Anucha Puapairoj
  • Junko Kano
  • Masayuki Noguchi
  • Masanao Miwa
  • Puangrat Yongvanit
Research Article


Cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) associated with Opisthorchis viverrini (Ov) chronic infection is the most frequent primary liver cancer in Thailand, and current approaches to early diagnosis and curative treatments are largely disappointing. We hypothesize a role for protein kinase A (PKA) in Ov-induced CCA. First, we studied the PKA isozyme switching in the liver from the hamster CCA model using quantitative (q) PCR, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemical and western blot analysis. Second, the presence of extracellular PKA (ECPKA) in CCA cell lines and their conditioned media was demonstrated by western blot and PKA activity assay. Third, we determined the association between PRKAR1A expression and serum ECPKA autoantibody in patients with CCA by ELISA. We demonstrated that an increased PRKAR1A expression is restricted to the biliary cells starting from week 1, with remarkable up-regulation when CCA has completely developed by week 24. The switching of the PKA regulatory subunit isoforms from PRKAR2B/PKAII to PRKAR1A/PKAI is significantly associated with cholangiocyte proliferation. Further, we observed that human CCA cell lines express PRKAR1A but not PRKAR2B and excrete ECPKA. Finally, ECPKA autoantibodies are detected in serum of patients with CCA, adenocarcinoma, and Ov infection with periductal fibrosis, but not from Ov-infected subjects without periductal fibrosis lesion and healthy controls. We conclude that PKA isozyme switching and the PRKAR1A/PKAI pathway might contribute to the induction of cholangiocyte transformation and proliferation in Ov-induced CCA. Overexpression of PRKAR1A leads to secretion of ECPKA which is associated with serum autoantibody that may constitute a biomarker for human CCA genesis.


Cholangiocarcinoma PKA isozyme switching ECPKA autoantibody Periductal fibrosis 



This work was supported by Khon Kaen University Research Fund (Grant No. 46-03-1-01-04) to PY, Thailand Research Fund (TRF) (Grant No. MRG4980174) to WL, Research Strengthening Grant from BIOTEC-NSTDA, Thailand, and the Higher Education Research Promotion and National Research University Project of Thailand, Office of the Higher Education Commission, through the Health Cluster (SHeP-GMS), Khon Kaen University. We thank Professor Carlo Selmi for his editorial assistance.

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Watcharin Loilome
    • 1
  • Sasithorn Yooyuen
    • 1
  • Nisana Namwat
    • 1
  • Paiboon Sithithaworn
    • 2
  • Anucha Puapairoj
    • 3
  • Junko Kano
    • 4
  • Masayuki Noguchi
    • 4
  • Masanao Miwa
    • 5
  • Puangrat Yongvanit
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry and Liver Fluke and Cholangiocarcinoma Research Center, Faculty of MedicineKhon Kaen UniversityKhon KaenThailand
  2. 2.Department of Parasitology and Liver Fluke and Cholangiocarcinoma Research Center, Faculty of MedicineKhon Kaen UniversityKhon KaenThailand
  3. 3.Department of Pathology and Liver Fluke and Cholangiocarcinoma Research Center, Faculty of MedicineKhon Kaen UniversityKhon KaenThailand
  4. 4.Department of Pathology, Institute of Basic Medical SciencesUniversity of TsukubaTsukubaJapan
  5. 5.Faculty of BioscienceNagahama Institute of Bio-Science and TechnologyNagahamaJapan

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