Author(s): TSANNLONG HWANG, TZUTSUNG CHANGCHIEN, CHEECHAN WANG, CHIMING WU
Claudin-4 is a member of a large family of transmembrane proteins known as claudins, which are essential for the formation and maintenance of tight junctions. Our previous studies have revealed that claudin-4 proteins are overexpressed in metastatic gastric cancer. To clarify the roles of claudin-4 in gastric cancer metastasis, human gastric adenocarcinoma (AGS) cells constitutively expressing wild-type claudin-4 were generated. Expression of claudin-4 in AGS cells was found to increase cell invasion and migration, as measured by Boyden invasion chamber assays. Moreover, the claudin-4-expressing AGS cells were found to have increased matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 and -9 expression, indicating that claudin-mediated increased invasion may be mediated through the activation of the MMP protein. Overall, the results suggest that claudin-4 overexpression may promote gastric cancer metastasis through the increased invasion of gastric cancer cells.