Endocrine Abstracts (2012) 29 P102

Proteomic approach to human adrenocortical cancer biology

G. Poli, E. Ceni, E. Michelucci, L. Canu, V. Piccini, G. Nesi, G. Cantini, G. Moneti, A. Galli, M. Mannelli & M. Luconi


University of Florence, Florence, Italy.


Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare tumor with poor prognosis due to its highly malignant phenotype and lack of effective treatment options.

The etiology of ACC is still unknown. To better understand the pathogenesis of this type of tumor and to determine differentially abundant proteins and candidate biomarkers for adrenal cancer diagnosis and prognosis, we used a novel approach based on two-dimensional differential gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE). Protein samples were isolated from 10 ACC and 11 normal adrenal tissues (NOR) and subjected to 2D-DIGE analysis. Minimal fluorescent dye labeling was applied and electrophoresis performed with triple samples (normal and tumor; internal control) for each gel. After excision from preparative gels, sixty spots were identified by mass spectrometry. Most of the corresponding proteins associated with spots was significantly up-regulated in tumor compared with normal tissue (fold increase: 2–9.7; cut-off: 1.5). Among them, some were associated with glycolysis and the Warburg effect and others were structural proteins already identified as involved in other tumor types. These data suggest that some of the identified proteins could represent valid diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers also for ACC. Our findings support the application of proteomics not only for elucidating ACC biology but also for its potential transferability to clinics.

Declaration of interest: The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest that could be perceived as prejudicing the impartiality of the research project.

Funding: This work was supported, however funding details unavailable.

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