Background: Prostate cancer (PC) , a common malignant tumor, is the second-leading cause of cancer death among American men. Its successful treatment greatly relies on the early diagnose. Engrailed-2 (EN2) has been confirmed being existed with a high level in the urine of PC patients. In this study, to explore the application of EN2 in PC, we detected the immunohistochemical staining difference and EN2 expression level between benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and PC.
Methods: We developed a monoclonal antibody against the helix 3 in EN2 and confirmed its specificity with Western blotting (WB) and immunofluorescence detecting the subcellular localization of endogenous and exogenous EN2 in three PC cell lines (LNCap, PC3, and DU145). We conducted immunohistochemical staining using this homemade antibody, and RT-PCR to detect the expression of EN2 in 25 PC and 25 BPH cases , and analyzed the correlation of EN2 expression and PC clinical staging.
Results: The results of WB and immunofluorescence showed our homemade EN2 monoclonal antibody could specifically bind endogenous and exogenous EN2 protein in three different PC cell lines. Endogenous EN2 was generally expressed in the cytoplasm and exogenous EN2 mostly existed in the nucleus of these cell lines. Immunohistochemical staining in PC had extremely stronger signals than that in BPH, suggesting a higher EN2 expression level in PC, which was confirmed by RT-PCR. Interestingly, the stained areas in BPH tissues were mainly in nucleus and cytoplasm, while in PC tissues were mainly on cytomembrane. Moreover, the expression level of EN2 was positively correlated with the PC clinical staging.
Conclusion: Using our homemade EN2 antibody, we have found different staining patterns and expression level of EN2 in BPH and PC，which may be helpful to predict prostatic disease progression.