CD44 and CD74: The promising candidates for molecular targeted therapy in oral squamous cell carcinoma

Pouyan Amini Shakib, Fereshteh Ensani, Afshin Abdirad, Bahareh Valizadeh, Maryam Seyedmajidi, Shima Sum


Background: Considering molecular target therapy concept in the treatment of oral squamous

cell carcinoma (OSCC), many attempts have been performed to introduce an effective molecular

marker during recent years. Several investigations have emphasized on the role of CD44 in various

cancers and few studies have mentioned CD24 and CD74. The purpose of this study was to

investigate the relationship between CD44, CD24 and CD74 expressions and several clinical or

histopathological factors in OSCC patients.

Materials and Methods: In our analytical cross-sectional study, forty primary OSCC specimens

were immunohistochemically stained for CD44, CD24, and CD74 proteins. Then, the relationship

between their expressions and age, sex, lymph node metastasis, and histopathologic grading was

statistically analyzed using Mann-Whitney nonparametric and t-test. Furthermore, P < 0.05 was

considered as signifi cant.

Results: CD44 and CD74 proteins were signifi cantly over-expressed in OSCC patients with

high grade (P = 0.001 and P = 0.001) as compared to those with low grade. Furthermore, CD74

immunoreactivity showed signifi cantly higher expression in patients with lower age (P = 0.039).

Considering lymph node metastasis, we observed signifi cant overexpression of CD74 in patients

with no lymph node involvement (P = 0.033).

Conclusion: Our observations support the signifi cant role of membranous CD44 protein in

progression of OSCC and also introduce CD74 protein as a probable interfering factor in different

aspects of OSCC.

Key Words: Antigen, CD24, CD44, carcinoma, immunohistochemistry, squamous cell of head and neck

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