Glucose is provided to cells by a family of glucose transport facilitators known as GLUTs. These transporters are expressed in a tissue specific manner and are overexpressed in many primary tumors of these tissues. Regulation of glucose transport facilitator expression has been demonstrated in endometrial tissue and endometrial adenocarcinoma. The following experiments were conducted to quantify and localize the expression of GLUT1 and GLUT8 in benign endometrium and compare this expression to endometrial cancer. Endometrial tissue samples were obtained from random hysterectomy specimens of patients with benign indications for surgery and endometrial cancer. Immunoblot and immunolocatization studies were performed using GLUT1 and GLUT8 specific antisera. Endometrial samples from 65 women who had undergone hysterectomy were examined (n=38 benign, n=27 malignant). A 44 and a 35.4 kDa immunoreacive species was demonstrated in endometrium and endometrial cancer for GLUT1 and GLUT8, respectively. Upregulation of GLUT1 expression was demonstrated with increasing grade of tumors (P<0.002). GLUT8 expression was increased in all tumor subtypes compared to atrophic endometrium (P<0.001). Apical localization by GLUT1 and GLUT8 was demonstrated in endometrial glands. GLUT1 and GLUT8 demonstrated diffuse intracellular localization in the cancer subtypes. GLUT1 and GLUT8 are expressed in both human endometrium and endometrial cancer. There appears to be a step-wise progression in GLUT1 and GLUT8 expression as tumor histopathology worsens. GLUT1 and GLUT8 may be important markers in tumor differentiation, as well as providing energy to rapidly dividing tumor cells.
- Glucose transport facilitators
- Uterine cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine