Polymorphic expression of decay-accelerating factor in human colorectal cancer

Masahiro Nakagawa, Motowo Mizuno, Mikihiro Kawada, Tokurou Uesu, Junichirou Nasu, Kazuaki Takeuchi, Hiroyuki Okada, Yuichi Endo, Teizo Fujita, Takao Tsuji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Background: We have previously shown that expression of decay-accelerating factor (DAF), a complement regulatory protein, is enhanced immunohistochemically on the luminal surface of cancer glands in human colorectal cancer and is detected in stool specimens of patients with colorectal cancer. The amount of DAF present in the stools might be influenced by the stability of DAF on the cell surface which is regulated by biochemical properties such as glycosylation of the protein. In the present study, to help elucidate the mechanism for the release of DAF from human colorectal cancers, we biochemically analyzed DAF expression by western and northern blotting by using surgically resected specimens of colorectal cancers. Methods: Surgically resected colorectal cancer tissues were obtained from 10 patients. Expression of DAF was determined by western and northern blotting, and glycosylation of DAF protein was analyzed with glycosidase digestion. Results: Northern blot analysis demonstrated that the expression of DAF mRNA in colorectal cancer was enhanced two- to threefold compared with normal tissues. In western blotting, expression of DAF protein in the cancer tissue was increased, and heterogeneity in the apparent molecular weight of DAF was observed among patients. When o-linked sugars were removed, this heterogeneity of DAF size diminished. Conclusions: The polymorphic expression of DAF in colorectal cancer is likely to reflect variability in the o-glycosylation of the protein. We speculate that this variability could affect the stability of DAF on the surfaces of cancer cells and, in turn, the amount of DAF shed into the stools of colorectal cancer patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)184-189
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology (Australia)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • CD55 (decay-accelerating factor)
  • Colon cancer
  • Complement regulators
  • O-glycosylation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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